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HORACE MCQUEEN: End of the year — older, maybe smarter!

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End Of The Year — older, maybe smarter!

By Horace McQueen

2018 is winding down. It’s been a difficult twelve months for the farm and ranch folks. Too much rain–or too little—at the wrong time. Hay production is way down, and hay sellers are in the driver’s seat. Cotton and grain farmers have seen their prices erode and most are barely making ends meet when they sell their crops. As for the wet stuff, plenty of Texas counties got record amounts of rain this year. At our Latexo farm, we have measured 53.8 inches so far this year—with more possibly to come before month end.

One caution worth repeating concerns green acorns. Cattle don’t thrive on a big crop of acorns. Matter of fact, if they consume acorns and continue to do so, the chance of death is there. Acorns must be a “taste treat” for cattle—and if forage is limited, they will gorge on the crop. Signs of acorn poisoning are diarrhea, dehydration, constipation and emaciation. If cattle are in a pasture with lots of oak trees loaded with acorns, move livestock off to another place if possible.

Both branches of the U.S. Congress have voted to do away with more work requirements for people to get welfare checks. Just a few months ago, the Republicans in both the House and Senate were calling for adoption of “work rules” that would require able-bodied welfare recipients to work at least 20-hours a week. And if they could not find a job, the government would make a job available. But the hue and cry from the Democrats in Congress—and the caving-in of Republicans–spelled doom. So, no new work rules, just keep greedy hands out and taxpayer swill reward them with food, housing, phones, and more!

More than 40 million citizens—and non-citizens—now are on the food stamp rolls. And each day, the numbers go up and up. Twenty years ago, the government-issue food stamps were used by 20-million people—and today is twice that!

No question — in my Aggie mind — that the news media (broadcast, print and digital) has gone to the dogs. Few real reporters are working to report the news objectively. For most of this rag-tag set of liberals, reporting the facts is not their aim. Often the reporter is the star of the report rather than the person being questioned.

My friend Jerry Nine, sale barn owner in Woodward, Oklahoma, is no fan of those who structure their news gathering to their own objectives. He tells the story of a school teacher who asked her students to tell their classmates what their dads did for a living. Little Johnny said, “My dad’s a stripper at a gay club and turns tricks in the alley to make extra money.” After the class, the teacher called Johnny over with a question. “Johnny, is your dad actually a stripper at a club?” Johnny replied, “No, he’s a reporter for CNN, but I was too embarrassed to say that.” My friends, that’s enough on that subject! Horace@valornet.com