Snow and Adversity
|FTLComm - Tisdale - December 18, 2000|
In seven days we will celebrate that day of all days of the year, Christmas Day. We will have a good time, eat more than we should and delight in those with whom we spend the day.
Over the last two days we have had some snow and over the past week some low temperatures, alas it is December and that is what we expect. There is nothing we can do about the weather but come to terms with it, prepare for it and take measures to survive when it delivers its annual promise.
I don't want to dampen the Christmas spirit in any way but as I considered the economic condition of this and other agriculturally
|dependent communities after|
written the story about
the Wheat Board and the Grain companies Saturday, I can't get the negative blemish out of my mind.
My wife visited on the phone with a friend who told of the depression and burden that is part of their lives and has been part of their lives since rail line abandonment and elevator closures have moved the line of profitability from the black to the red. She, as a grandmother, is affected by how her sons and their wives feel the dissolving future descending upon their once prosperous and extensive farm empire.
Unlike the wind, and the waves of snow that wash over us (more expected today and tomorrow) that are just adversity you have to prepare for and accept. The economy of agricultural Saskatchewan is an imposed adversity, consciously constructed and put in place to expand the profitability of a few stockholders and holders of RSPs in mutual funds. Decisions were made to favour the investors and the consequences seem unending.
We all know that we can make it through the next eight to ten weeks of cold and restricted travel imposed by a passing winter, but it will pass. But when it does, fuel prices will continue to be high, transportation costs will trim away all profits and the
low grain prices will simply make 78% of all farm operations in Saskatchewan losing
money ventures. Only those farm operations huddled close to the terminals, or able
to produce some crops with low input costs that will turn some revenue, can expect
to break even and as they do, the grain companies continue to plot and develop strategies
to further gouge and encumber the agricultural community. No wonder the small business
people we call "farmers" are depressed emotionally as well as financially.