Letters to the editor – March 12, 2020

Test samples will never match

Re: Questionable moisture tests may cost farmers big bucks, (WP, Feb. 27).

The Western Producer’s front page article regarding “questionable moisture tests” swiped my total attention.

Every fall at the beginning of harvest I self test my harvested crop moisture. Then I take that very sample to the local grain elevator. With that result I could ascertain my tester’s result.

Most years I get a test roughly 0.2 difference. That is fine. Three years ago my tester was testing 1.0 drier than the elevator. All tests that year had that result.

Two years ago my tester tested 0.5 drier. This past harvest one grain merchant site was testing the same test as mine. However just down the road at a second site my grain sample was 1.0 more.

Roughly a dozen years ago, on a flax sample just combined, my tester showed 0.2 wetter then dry. I took the same sample to the grain elevator. Their result was just dry. On the way home I took that very same sample to a second grain purchaser site. Their result was 3.0 wetter then mine.

Differences have always been happening. Why? They will never be identical. Plain and simple, try a second or even third purchaser. More miles travelled farther could be a gain. Try it!

Delwyn Jansen

Humboldt,  Sask.

Electoral system needs to be changed

Our federal Minister of Middle Class Prosperity, Mona Fortier, recently stated, in part, in her opening remarks to a small group of people: “We are on unceded land…”

An incredible statement by a federal minister, insinuating we do not own the land our homes are sitting on.

First Nations’ claims to lands and resources are based on the mis-conception that “I saw it first, makes it mine.” 

In reality, we are all descendants of the last settlers on mother Earth, and have the same rights to lands and resources, regardless of how and when we arrived as individuals or groups; today’s First Nations included.

The global population is becoming progressively more migrant, with people and borders moving virtually every day.

Canada is a typical sovereign country, where the land belongs to the crown. The crown is the people who form communities with borders and governments and who are elected to represent the people within those communities. We are all equal under the same laws.

The First Nations have been active participants in this process as voters and elected members and ministers in federal and provincial governments, as well as the inter-active local municipal and tribal governments working together.

Illegal blockades were crippling our industries and all levels of our governments, challenging our politicians to work together to resolve what have become ridiculous claims for lands, resources and compensation, and our prime minister was not engaged.

The opposition parties have enough votes to trust or turf Prime Minister Justin Trudeau but they are more concerned about being politically correct than they are about the welfare of the people who elected them.

What an incredible lack of leadership by all parties involved.

By using climate change to shut down our resource industries, Trudeau will be close to shutting down our entire economy and that will precipitate massive unemployment, especially in our resource sectors as big capital is heading south of our borders.

Our voting system is corrupt.

Party leaders are using party discipline to control the votes in our Parliament and legislatures, insisting our MLAs and MPs comply with their politically correct agenda, no matter how stupid it gets.

We desperately need a different electoral system that will force our politicians to become accountable to the people, to effectively end the destruction we are witnessing today.

Andy Thomsen

Kelowna, B.C.

Tax credits work with carbon tax

Your newspaper has published many articles and debates about the costs of the carbon tax to grain farmers, but very little on solutions.

British Columbia is a great example of the benefits of a revenue-neutral carbon tax. Lower CO2 emissions, and one of the highest growth rates of all the provinces.

To encourage efficiency and economic growth, a carbon tax must be revenue neutral. This is critical for export industries. 

A simple solution is a refundable tax credit, included on the income tax calculation and paid to all grain and oilseed producers in the specific province. The tax credit set at so many cents per dollar of crop sales. The same rate per dollar of crop sales for all farms in the province. 

Note that the rebate should not be based on the fuel purchases of the farm, but linked to the provincial average. This creates a positive feedback loop for farms that change and innovate to consume less fuel. 

A similar system could be applied to animal agriculture. 

Fred Waddy

Colpitts, N.B.

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