Letters to the editor – May 19, 2016

CWB not needed

I am a farmer. I am proud to be a farmer. We grow food for the world. We are strong and independent.

Farmers don’t have a single unified voice to speak about farming issues. I don’t think that is going to change any time soon.

There are, however, a few groups that claim to represent farmers and put forward information (much of it incorrect, flawed or biased) to the media.

Often the media soaks this up and publishes it for all to see. I challenge the Canadian Wheat Board Alliance and the National Farmers Union to be open with the public and media and reveal how many members they have in their organizations. I may be wrong but I believe those numbers will be minimal and make up a very small percentage of active farmers.

I was born and raised on a farm and have been making a living farming since the 1980s. There have been good years and bad ones since then. The most profitable have been the last five years or so.

These organizations would have you believe that since the Canadian Wheat Board lost its monopoly farmers are much worse off than before. I don’t see it. And I know many farmers have the same opinion.

When farmers were no longer forced to sell their grain to the CWB there was no big uproar from farmers. A huge majority of them were quite happy with the change.

Hopefully this will help clarify this issue for the non-farmers that read such articles in the media.

Brad Levorson
Cabri, Sask.

Local food makes sense

One wonders at the cause of the Dirty Thirties economically? What is the cause of declining economic today?

An audit was done to find out what happened that caused the 1930s depression. In the 1920s a free-trade deal of sorts was enacted to allow Great Britain and Europe to pay off their war debts.

North Americans were encouraged to buy cheaper imports instead of supporting local production.

They were told that if they bought the cheaper Swiss watch for $15 instead of the $30 American-produced watch they would have $15 to spare to purchase other cheaper imports. The audit shows what happened.

• The import costs the consumer $15 and all the money leaves the country, a loss of $15.

• The nation loses the sales of raw materials and labour to produce the $30 good-quality watch and loses production of the $30 watch. A net loss to the economy of $30.

• A loss of $30 and $15 total loss of $45 for every $15 import sold.

• That consumer ended up losing his job because he also worked at other industries that shut down because people were buying other imports because of free trade as well.

• Europe remained in a depression because of low wages and removed currency from America. There were caused shortages of currency, as money left the country and production slowed.

The same principle applies today with automobiles that are imported. For every $20,000 import sold, that money leaves the country and the country loses the production from raw materials of the locally produced automobile of $20,000. A net loss of $40,000 for every $20,000 import sold. Check out your car’s serial number, if it begins with number 2 it is a domestic automobile, all other first numbers are imports.

The same principle applies to locally produced beer in Saskatchewan. When someone buys import beer that $3 leaves the country and the country loses production of a $3 local beer. A net loss of $6 for every import purchased. When you extrapolate that into Saskatchewan’s beer consumption it has to amount to over $1 billion loss to the province annually, with corresponding loss of employment and sales that occur. All that money would remain in the province if people bought local.

This principle applies to all locally produced food production, such as beef or any other local products produced.

Ronald E. Kennedy
Simpson, Sask.



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