Amber Waves of Grain -- To Feed the Nation; You Need a Third National Bank
Solving the food shortages now facing our nation requires a thoughtful set of actions. Whether you focus on the shortage of baby formula, the lack of fertilizer delivered to farmers, or the ever-changing array of empty shelves in the grocery store, one thing stands out: The Biden collective has been a disaster, dramatically exacerbating an already present crisis in American agriculture.
All of the measures presented here start conceptually with the indispensable creation of a Third National Bank and its national credit directed to the nation’s productive enterprises. Only national banking, replacing the bankrupt Federal Reserve central banking system, can organize the required flow of productive credits into the real economy, to grow our population and the productivity of our nation. This is particularly true for modern, capital, and technology intensive agriculture. In addition, vigorous anti-trust enforcement must be undertaken against the agricultural cartels which are invariably tied to the speculative practices of the City of London and Wall Street. They now dictate both farm prices and farm products.
The first step in securing the food supply involves paying the actual farmer—not the meatpacker, grain or fertilizer cartel—but the farmers. When you, or your neighbor, are paying outrageous prices at the grocery store, you are NOT paying the farmer and his family. Rather, the predatory grain, meatpacking, fertilizer, and grain cartels are stealing both the farmer’s livelihood and your paycheck.
To be clear, we require an end to financialized, short-sighted decision-making that narrows all production of essentials—even baby formula!—to a vulnerable few facilities. We require capital investment on a very, very, large scale, but not into corporate farms. We must end “just-in-time” and “lean manufacturing” gimmicks, as those schemes have also been applied to growing and raising our food.
On average, our farmers lose money every year. In nine of the last 10 years, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) has reported that the average funds generated on-farm for farm operators to meet living expenses and debt obligations have been negative. Across our nation, their on-farm toils have contributed less than 25% of the average family farm’s household income. They would starve or go bankrupt if they did not take up shift jobs in power plants, work in lumberyards, or manage a gas station. 75% of their family income has been earned off-farm, and yet they have farmed, days and often nights, to produce.
For the recent decades, our farmers and ranchers toil and produce largely out of love for what they do—reflecting the Biblical injunction of Genesis 1:28—they are productive human beings and will not “adjust” to being something else. They were paid little, and there is no bumper crop of young farmers eagerly waiting to take their place, given the sacrifices made by the present generation of farmers. That is why the average age of our farmers is now over 57 years.
Securing our future food supply requires a new generation of family farmers, but to a young man or woman, the owning and running of a farm or ranch is financially daunting—with the cost of land, the developments in agricultural technology, and new required inputs requiring investment, but now resulting in low returns. At the same time, they must learn the next wave of technology, from autonomous tractors and lasers, temperature and moisture sensors, aerial imaging with drones, and GPS technology, and somehow pay for it all.
In addition to paying farmers at a rate which allows them to farm and to reinvest in their operations sufficiently to ensure continuous advanced productivity, we must create hundreds of thousands of new family farms and ranches. Our nation requires diversified family farms and diversified crops again. We need family farms that are no longer the prey of the global futures and commodity markets, with lives hanging on the price offered for a sole commodity: that single, market-dictated “cash crop.”
Finally, multiplying the number of family farms requires more freshwater and electrical power, expanded and advanced freight service into vibrant growing rural communities, and reasonably priced inputs such as fertilizer!
Farm Demographics Today
Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) data shows that over the last 60 years, in many agriculturally important regions of the US (much of Texas, the Eastern Uplands (see map), and the Basin & Range) total production expenditures have far surpassed production revenues. Whole regions of our nation are being ground into dust.
US Farm Regions as Defined by the FDA
Overall, for the whole country, from 2015 to 2019, an average of 28.9% of counties nationally reported negative realized net farm income as compared to 1.0% over the period from 1969 to 1973. In other words, our farmers & ranchers—and their families—are subsidizing our nation’s food costs! (And these figures already include the “direct payments” to farmers from federal programs, including federal crop insurance, indemnity payments, and crop subsidies.)
National median farm income earned by farm households—that is on the farm—were forecast by the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) to decrease in 2021 further to -$1,344 from -$1,198 in 2020. Off-farm income has been keeping farm debt low with the bankruptcy rate at 3 per 10,000 farms. The current farm debt-to-asset ratio is only 14%.
Family farms (in which the majority of the business is owned by the operator and individuals related to the operator) of various types accounted for about 98 percent of US farms as of 2020. In the most recent survey, there were 2.02 million US farms in 2020, down from 2.20 million in 2007. It is clear that we are losing farms and farmers. Under these circumstances, how long do you think our nation can keep producing? Is it any wonder that we have food shortages?
Where Will Our Future Farmers Come From?
To a large extent, farmers are still trained through hands-on experience and self-education—and certainly there is no requirement of a sheepskin. However, many farmers and ranchers now have bachelor’s degrees. Associate’s and bachelor’s degrees in agriculture-related fields are more and more the norm, in fields such as agricultural engineering, soil science, agronomy, agricultural economics, farm management, animal husbandry, or dairy science. Aspiring farmers also learn through apprenticeships, or by working with experienced farmers.
Farmers and ranchers must continually analyze livestock and land quality, operate, and maintain complex agricultural machines and ever-more sophisticated equipment, while making hard business decisions. Successful farmers must overcome natural obstacles in weather and plant & animal diseases, and—until we change it—those obstacles created by predatory financial markets in the form of wild price vacillations. In short, our farmers are among the most sophisticated producers in our nation.
Our land-grant university system remains critical to both future farmer training and to producing the technological innovations which increase agricultural productivity. These programs require support and expansion. Additionally, we need to expand educational programs about farming throughout the nation, encouraging such organizations as Future Farmers of America and high school curricula devoted to the subject in many states.
Credit from a Third National Bank, extended to young, qualified would-be farmers, is going to be crucial in driving the productive expansion of our farm and ranch communities.
Untangling the Web of Monetarism, Deceit
Consider the City of London/Wall Street “market-driven” trend toward agricultural “monoculture” and “specialization” over the span of the Twentieth Century. This created an American agricultural sector in which one group of farmers (grain producers) essentially produce for export, for ethanol, and for inputs to one other group (livestock producers). Meanwhile, the production of produce—fruit and vegetables—has been increasingly moved outside the country altogether.
In this Agriculture Report, the beef, corn and produce (fruits & vegetables) portions of our agricultural economy will be discussed.
Just four meatpackers—Cargill, Tyson Foods, JBS, and National Beef Packing—now control 55% to 85% of the entire hog, cattle, and chicken markets. There has been noise about diversifying the meat packing cartel coming from the Biden collective, but no actual solutions. (Likewise in terms of the predatory fertilizer cartel, see below).
Beef cattle production is perhaps the most important agricultural industry in the United States, consistently accounting for the largest share of total cash receipts for agricultural commodities. In 2021, cattle production was forecast to represent about 17 percent of the $391 billion in total cash receipts for all agricultural commodities. Yet farmers and ranchers are getting a fraction of the price that citizens pay for their product in the supermarket.
Most cattle ranchers today do not generally raise their cattle and take them to sell to cattle buyers at auction. Most ranches are now cow-calf operations, or “backgrounding” or “stocker” stage operations, which sell their calves (or larger, young cattle), to be finished on the largely cartel-controlled feedlots. This year, calves were forecast to sell at about $1.60 a pound, but August Feeder futures were by May, about $1.81 a pound, compared to a futures price of about $1.58 a pound this past March.
Oligopoly in the Meat Packing Industry
The beef packing industry had a four-firm concentration ratio of 36% in 1980 (USDA-GIPSA, 2006). However, already by 1995, the four-firm cartel concentration for beef packers exceeded 80% and has officially remained near or above that level ever since. (USDA-AMS, 2020b; USDA-GIPSA, 2006)
Price-fixing: A 2022 Iowa State University study shows that “multiplant coordination” among beef packers is actually behind the farm-to-wholesale spreads in prices. Multi-plant coordination is defined as the firm-level coordination of procurement and slaughter activities across plants by multi-plant beef packers, with the goal of maximizing corporate-level—as opposed to plant-level—profits. In short, plants are being shut down in order to force cattle ranchers to compete for access to a shrinking number of packing houses. This leads, in turn, to shrinking young cattle herds, as farmers and ranchers are squeezed out.
The open scandal is that the farmer/rancher share of the price of beef sales is acknowledged to have dropped to about 37%—while the price of beef has risen spectacularly. This is shown in the farm-to-wholesale price spread, which had almost doubled. Meatpacking firms are circumventing the cattle auctions (“spot”) process that ranchers had long relied on to get the best competitive price. The meatpackers’ cartel squeezes ranchers to sell at pre-agreed prices to the packers. The packers then own the “feeder cattle”’ in advance, through these futures contracts.
70 to 75 percent of all US beef ultimately comes from cattle fed in feedlots, but again the ownership of feedlots has been concentrated and intertwined with the meatpacking cartel. Feedlots with 1,000-head-or-greater capacity are less than 5 percent of the total number of feedlots, but they now market 80 to 85 percent of these “fed cattle.” Feedlots with a capacity of 32,000 head or more market around 40 percent of fed cattle. The top three feedlot states (Texas, Nebraska, and Kansas) now market almost 60 percent of the cattle fed in the United States.
Just to give a sense of the intertwined nature of Wall Street, the meatpacking cartel, and the big feedlots: In 2018, the sale of Five Rivers Cattle Feeding, previously owned by cartel member JBS USA, was completed to asset management firm Pinnacle Asset Management, L.P. of New York. Pinnacle Asset Management, L.P., is “a private . . . alternative asset management firm,” based at 712 Fifth Avenue, New York. In 2022, Five Rivers Feeding had over 900,000 cattle in 11 yards in six states.
National Beef, another member of the meatpacking cartel, is owned by Marfrig, the second largest Brazilian food processing company and largest beef producer in the world. U.S. Premium Beef, LLC also has an ownership interest in National Beef and also owns/controls High Choice Feeders, LLC, a part of the feedlot business. National Beef partners with High Choice Feeders, with some 1,400 feedlots in seven states through their processing plants in Liberal, Kansas; Dodge City, Kansas: and Tama, Iowa.
The situation is no better when it comes to pork and poultry. Most pork production today is by contract farming. Foods, Inc., Triumph Foods, LLC, and Tyson Foods, Inc.—control over 80 percent of the wholesale market, and are facing price-fixing charges.
Similarly, over 90% of poultry production is contract farmed. The farmer is now reduced to a sharecropper, being told how and what he will produce. The inputs are provided and deducted from the final product. In October of 2020, Pilgrim’s Pride Corporation announced that it has entered into a plea agreement with the US Department of Justice, Antitrust Division, in which it will pay a fine of $110.5 million for restraint of competition that affected three contracts for the sale of chicken products to one customer in the United States, the company said in a news release.
Corn for What, and How Much?
Today, 35-40 percent of US corn is burned in making the fuel, ethanol. No kidding. More than thirty million acres of some the most valuable US farm land are devoted to this—feeding the grain cartel, not people, while tying up vital productive capacity. The major commodity cartel participants in the globalized food system, including Archer Daniels Midland (ADM), Bunge, Cargill and Louis Dreyfus, collectively known as the ABCD quartet of traders (along with Nestlé S.A.), share a significant presence in a range of basic commodities, controlling as much as 90 per cent of the global grain trade. The major traders do not just trade physical commodities—they operate from the farm to food manufacturing. They provide seed, fertilizer, herbicides, and pesticides to growers, and buy agricultural outputs and store them in their own facilities. They act as landlords, pork and poultry producers, food processors, biofuel providers, and providers of financial services in commodity markets. Traders are part of the post-1971 transformation of food production into a complex, globalized and financialized business. See here and here.
A total of over 90 million acres of land are planted in corn every year, most in the Heartland region (Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, and parts of Minnesota, South Dakota, Nebraska, Missouri, Kentucky, and Ohio). Many of these corn growers say that the ethanol corn market “saved agriculture.” Almost every gallon of gas sold in the US now contains 10.1 percent ethanol. It was dictated in the 2005 Energy Policy Act and upgraded in the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007. The Renewable Fuel Standard has driven corn prices higher by 30%, and increased corn acreage by 8.7% on 6.9 million acres between 2008-2016. Archer-Daniels-Midland has prospered. (Although all grain prices are now going up, the 30% increase was there before the current Ukraine war).
99% of corn grown is dent corn (field corn), which is used in ethanol, as feed for livestock, and also made into food additives—starch, sweetners, corn oil. Less than one percent of all corn grown in the United States is the sweet corn that we eat in the unprocessed form. Corn is now the largest crop in terms of sales, accounting for 26.5 percent of total crop sales in the US.
Corn is also the most subsidized crop. The US distributes around $20-25 billion in agricultural subsidies to farming businesses yearly. But 15 percent of farm businesses receive 85 percent of these subsidies. Almost all subsidies go to grain: corn, soybeans, wheat, cotton, and rice—with corn receiving the largest share. In 2019, those subsidies, were about 20% of all farm income. In 2020, they were 39%, due to special programs intended to blunt the effects of COVID and China’s counter-tariffs.
Both Republicans and Democrats in Congress support ethanol, particularly in the Heartland states, and particularly because of the enormous apparent importance of corn to US agriculture: corn represents 26.5 percent of total crop sales in the US.
The subsidized nature of corn exports, also means it is arguably exported below actual cost. It beats out corn production in other countries, as do other subsidized grain exports. Take the case of Mexico. Mexico is now importing 35-40% of the corn it uses from the US. The US, in 2018-2019, provided 98 percent of Mexico’s corn imports, and that was 25% of US corn exports.
With the original NAFTA, this US-subsidized corn contributed to a 413 percent increase in US corn exports to Mexico, and a 66 percent decline in Mexican producer prices from the 1990’s to 2005. Thousands of Mexican farmers were bankrupted and fled the land—many coming to the US illegally. The once proud nation of Mexico is now dependent on corn imports from the US. Utilizing now cheapened labor, Mexico now grows much of the produce (vegetables and fruits) we need in the US. Neither the US, nor Mexico benefit in this swindle.
The fundamental question posed by current corn production practices remains: Why are we utilizing highly productive farmland and productive farm labor to obsessively produce for ethanol. Why are we growing food to burn rather than eat?
The return to diversified family farms, which produce and grow some mix of cattle, hogs or chickens; grow feed grains; and market their produce represents a return to sanity. Not only is this better for the development of soil and soil science, it portends better farm incomes—with a return to parity pricing as we outline below. This renaissance of farming is absolutely critical to regrow our rural communities, towns, and cities across middle America—to thereby multiply and diversify local businesses and manufacturing as a byproduct of meeting the needs of productive and prosperous farm families.
Vegetable and Fruit Produce and Their Importation
Under conditions of Wall Street speculation-driven policies, we now import almost two-thirds of our fresh fruit and one-third of out fresh vegetables—constituting $23 billion dollars in imports in FY2019. The same goes for nuts. Mexico is the source of half of our fresh fruit imports and three quarters of US fresh vegetables. Rather than invest in capital intensive agriculture, the food cartels have moved the production offshore, where cheap, even virtual slave labor conditions predominate. The growing of row crops in the US has become virtually a niche market—devoutly organic, and produced for high end restaurants and “eat local” foodies.
As of FY2019 the US exported $23 billion in horticultural products and imported $66 billion in horticultural products. Of course, there are some tropical fruits that only grow to our South. There are also seasonal differences, and there is demand for seasonal produce year round in US grocery stores.
However, this dependence upon foreign production of produce is not in our national interest. With capital investment available, as opposed to predatory “market efficiencies,” the further mechanization of produce agriculture can rapidly expand. Relatively good machines now exist for mechanically harvesting most fruits and vegetables for processing—including berries. You can see how these machines work online. A particularly fun video compares produce harvesting—old and new.
Farmers are squeezed by the concentrated market power in the agricultural input industries. We previously discussed the meatpacking industry regarding beef. The same goes for fertilizer, feed, and perhaps also equipment suppliers. Here we briefly discuss fertilizer. For nitrogen, phosphate, and potassium, a handful of fertilizer companies control access.
Consolidated through well-known mergers, the total number of fertilizer firms shrank from 46 to 13 firms between 1984 and 2008. The major cartel is made up of CF Industries, Mosaic, Nutrien, Yara North American, and ICI Fertilizers. There has been little expansion of fertilizer production. In fact, these companies have generally proclaimed their commitment instead to “share buy-backs” and stockholder dividends since the beginning of 2022. Already in 2021, US fertilizer prices to farmers increased by 60%—and in some cases by twice that amount.
The Biden collective made the whole situation far worse, with the seizure of Russian Central Bank foreign reserves, and the oil and gas embargo. Russia is a major fertilizer producer and exporter. See here and here.
Already in early February, before the Ukraine war, producers were complaining that they had difficulty purchasing crop inputs from suppliers for the 2022 crop season. Survey respondents reported difficulty in purchasing a broad spectrum of crop inputs including herbicides, insecticides, fertilizer, and farm machinery parts. Now, Union Pacific has announced a 20% reduction in available space to CF Industries, which ships scheduled nitrogen fertilizer to farmers in the West. The Surface Transportation Board has held hearings in recent weeks on this matter.
We need to bring down the cost of all major inputs—particularly fertilizer—but also the insecticides, herbicides, and seeds needed by farmers. In farming over the last 70 years, labor and land inputs declined by 76 and 28%, respectively. But the use of other “intermediate goods”—which includes energy, fertilizer, pesticides, purchased services, seeds, and feed had increased by 133% (USDA ERS, 2020c). Those are the figures before the accelerated run up of these material requirements in the last 14 months. Anti-trust laws must be utilized against the cartels controlling these inputs now. Additional Nitrogen (ammonia) plants need to be built, and they can be built anywhere you have natural gas—as the nitrogen is literally in the air everywhere.
Farm Inputs, Then and Now
Parity Prices Required for Agriculture
In a parity system, farmers are paid a price for a crop that reflects the average real cost to produce that particular crop and return a fair profit. In the “parity years” of 1942-1952, the farm program achieved approximately 100% of parity or better for US agriculture. Parity prices ensure not only that the farmer is paid, but that the farmer has a capacity to then reinvest into his land, and equipment, and to grow his productive capacities. Further, with parity pricing, he or she does not have to work off-the-farm to secure a living and avoid bankruptcy. The security provided by actually paying the producer for the crop, can and will attract a new generation of technologically proud farmers.
We are not discussing here the USDA’s farm loan programs, the Federal Farm Credit System, and FarmerMac—many of which came into being during the period of the US farm parity program. Suffice it to say that without a floor under farm prices, they cannot effectively support a healthy American agriculture sector.
The Federal agricultural subsidies programs, in their many reiterations, were never intended to replace the Federal parity program. Because they don’t have to pay, the grain, meatpacker, and fertilizer cartels will support a farm subsidy every time—over parity. Parity, combined with anti-trust action, takes away their “Big Steal.”
The Federal ag subsidies concept aids in the consolidation of agriculture as a mere extension of manufacturing—and that under conditions in which manufacturing has been “financialized,” ruined by failing “just-in-time,” and “lean manufacturing,” computerized cost/benefit digital schemes. The consequence of City of London/Wall Street cartelization of the Ag industry has been the destabilization of our nation’s agricultural production and now growing food shortages—just as we also witness the vaporization of similar “supply chains” through the rest of our economy. Remember, a mere of 15 percent of farm businesses receive 85 percent of these Ag subsidies.
If the parity price established for field corn (dent corn) were $7 a bushel, no field corn could be sold in the US for any purpose for less than $7 a bushel. Parity pricing doesn’t prevent selling at a higher price, based on quality, but it doesn’t guarantee any market at a higher price. The US Department of Agriculture maintains annual records of indexed parity prices (indexed to account for inflation) for a wide range of farm commodities. (See page 21)
The History of Agricultural Parity Law in the US
President Roosevelt and the US Congress passed the Agricultural Adjustment Act of 1933, which included a parity plan for raising farm prices. (The act was struck down in 1938, but the parity program stood.) A key mechanism adopted in the plan was the “90% of parity loan rate” program. The government would advance the farmer 90% of the parity price of what he would produce; the farmer would later sell his crop and pay off the loan. Or if he didn’t find buyers, he “forfeited” his crop to the government—legally paying off the said loan. This plan also imposed acreage limitations on farmers in return for Federal benefit payments. By limiting the supply of farm products produced, the Act specifically sought to raise prices and reestablish the relative purchasing power of farmers. A fair price paid to farmers was set, based upon an agreed “base period.” As already said, farm parity was achieved in 1942-1952, which years are often referred to as the “parity years.”
There were four general parts to this parity program: 1. minimum farm Price Floors; 2. Supply Reductions, as needed, to balance supply and demand; 3. also maximum farm Price Ceilings; 4. a trigger to release stored Federal Reserve Supplies of food as needed to address price spikes due to production shortages, or for other overriding needs.
The original 1910-1914 base period for indexing current parity prices was chosen because, it was agreed, that parity-like conditions had then existed in farm prices, and rural-urban standards of living were considered roughly equivalent. The prosperous 5-10 year period before 1914 is sometimes referred to as the “Golden Age” of agriculture, and the relative price level of this time shaped the thinking about legislating “parity” farm prices.
(Starting in the late 1950s or early 1960s, however, USDA altered the parity standard with other base periods. The lower standards are often called “rigged parity” among parity supporters. We will avoid that debate here.)
However, in the 1950’s, disputes broke out over several aspects of the parity pricing system in the “booming” post-WWII economy. This included opposition by farmers to limits placed on acreage that could be planted—acreage allotments that limited grain farmers in terms of what they could produce and sell.
Modern inputs rapidly increased post-WWII yields. Higher yields led to more limits on acreage allotments. More limits on acreage spurred farmers to grow more on their land that was in production. The government ended up holding large Federal stores of surpluses forfeited by farmers under the parity loan/price support policy.
Republicans, Heartland corn growers, and the Farm Bureau led the effort to throw out the parity system—seeking to end the fixed parity loan rates and the acreage controls that accompanied them. They were opposed by many farmers—especially in the South and Great Plains. This was a real brawl in the House and Senate in Washington, DC. The Agricultural Act of 1956 created the Soil Bank program (Title I of the Soil Bank Act), to take more land out of production in an effort to reduce these surpluses. Then in 1958 Congress allowed corn farmers a referendum, to be held no later than December 15, 1958, to end acreage allotments in corn production. With the option of voting to discontinue parity by voting themselves out, corn growers chose to end parity.
Another critical issue, but less talked about, centered on relative rates of scientific and technological advance. Critics argued that the parity program ignored changes in relative productivity. For instance, if productivity in agriculture (relative to the 1909–1914 base period) rose faster than in US industry, the parity price would be too high, and vice versa. Further these relationships would change, and change again, over time. The original Federal parity legislation assumed there was a balance between farm and city living standards and buying power, and sought to maintain this balance. As we think through what it will take to raise farm incomes throughout our nation, and raise the economic and cultural well-being of the communities they exist in, that still needs to be seriously considered.
In an important related aspect, it seems that commodity prices, paid to farmers and ranchers, cannot simply be adjusted for inflation, for the period between 1914 and 2022. A simple inflation calculator gives the figure that a dollar in 1914 is equivalent to 29 dollars today. But advances in farmer productivity, the result of advances in soil science, farm technologies, seed and fertilizer have also tremendously increased the yield per acre of grains. Wheat yields were reportedly 16 bushels an acre in 1914. Today the average yield is about 40 bushels an acre. Thus, a parity pricing system in agriculture today would have to be structured differently than in the 1930’s legislation.
Yet the principle must be the same: the farmer must be paid for his labor and his crop in such a way as to ensure continuously increasing productivity.
After 1954, the highest degree of parity for major crops occurred in 1973 and 1974—following the huge grain sale to Russia, when 91% and 86% of parity was achieved, respectively. During at least one of these two years, the major grain prices rose above 100% of parity, as did sugarcane and sugar beet prices. Soybean and peanut prices reportedly rose to just under 100% of parity.
Consider: our farmers and ranchers are the most advanced agricultural producers in the world! Despite everything, the output of our American farms and ranches nearly tripled between 1948 and 2017. That was as agricultural employment fell in absolute numbers, and as its share of total US employment. From 1948 to 2017, agricultural employment (including anyone working on farms, or in the forestry, logging, fishing, and related areas) as a share of total US employment, fell from 13 percent to a mere 2 percent—according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics. This has happened largely as the result of advanced technologies and advances in agricultural science being deployed by our farmers—not because they were getting paid to do this.
We recall the first Thanksgiving and give thanks. The thanks we give is truly an expression of human emotion, born of our reflection upon the bounty we have received, and recognition that from this very bounty, and the seeds we thereby harvest, we will plant again and reap again, to thus secure our posterity. This is not merely a cycle, but even in the simplest three-dimensional, draftsman-like drawing, can perhaps be best represented as a conical process upward—and outward, as in life’s self-similar growth and unfolding. Let us rebuild a diversified, sovereign, and self-sufficient American agriculture again, dedicated to building an ever better and more beautiful nation and world.
For further reading, this writer recommends Robert L. Baker’s 2019 report, “One Million New Family Farms, More Farms, More Factories, More Future!” which remains a valuable resource.