Follow Farmers’ Lead and Work Together for the Common Good

Everyone seems to be tired of politics. I have orders from within my house to write about something else – anything else! So let’s talk about farming…

Many recent news stories have reminded that electricity started here in farm country. In fact, it started right in my home county! The Reeve Electric Association Plant in Franklin County, now the REA Power Plant Museum, was the first farmer-owned power plant west of the Mississippi River. Some local farmers got together in the 1930s and formed a cooperative. In later years, a group of farmers formed a cooperative to buy inputs and sell produce. Some of my neighbors put together sow co-ops in the 1970s as a way to have a steady supply of healthy pigs.

Another angle on this concept of cooperatives is a group of farmers who live and work in colonies. I deal with “colonial farmers” for many of the inputs I use to construct and remodel pig barns. When I visit the colonies to get parts, I’m always fascinated by talking to the young men. Our chats give me a picture of their lives, and I know it gives them an idea of what my life is like.

Why am I talking about these forms of business or ways of living? Some of these systems and communities closely resemble forms of government. (I promise that I’m not talking politics now!) I find this topic even more interesting now that so many people a voicing their opinions on how a certain type of government is better, or more “fair,” than another.

History is filled with the answers to questions currently being raised! I once read a coffee table book about the history of the world. (Yes, I realize how ironic it is that such a heavy topic would be addressed in a coffee table format.) It was very interesting reading.

My point is that people change and evolve over time. We’re influenced by what happens in our lives, so everyone has a different perspective based on his or her experiences. Religious beliefs also greatly influence our thoughts and behaviors. History is filled with numerous examples of how religion plays a major role in most countries. Even countries that tried to eliminate religion were indeed influenced by religion.

History as a way of repeating itself, know. That’s why it’s so important that we take the time to study the facts! We all should research, read and make intelligent decisions based on facts rather than on the touchy-feely-feely, emotion-filled propaganda that certain groups disseminate. We all have minds, so we should use them!