The Algona Upper Des Moines from Algona, Iowa on April 19, 1960 · Page 17
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The Algona Upper Des Moines from Algona, Iowa · Page 17

Algona, Iowa
Issue Date:
Tuesday, April 19, 1960
Page 17
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CanReseal'58 Oafs If Done By April 30 Farm-stored 1958-erop onts now Under reseal may be stored for another 12-month period, ending April 30, 1961, the Iowa State Agricultural and Conservation office announced today. Farmers who elect to extend these loans will hold the grain for another year instead of delivering it to the Government at the end of the original extended period on April 30, 1960. Eligibility requirements will bo'tho same as for the original loan. Farmers will earn storage payments for the period of extended reseal in line with the new storage rates which are to be effective July 1, 1960. Reseal provisions have been announced previously on farm- stored 1959-crop corn, wheat, barley, and grain sorghums, 1958 and 1957-crop corn and wheat, 1958' crop grain sorghums and barley and 1956-crop corn. Under the price support rcsea program, farm-stored feed grains are retained on the farm under price support loans in areas where they can be safely stored for a longer period and where it is advantageous to farmers to do so. Chairman Richard I. Anderson of the Kossuth Agricultural Stabilization and Conservation committee also urged, wool growers who sold wool or lambs during the 1959 marketing year which ended March 31 to file their applications for payment under the ( National wool program as early ' iVi April as possible. iEarly filing is highly desirable, Mn Anderson said, because the information on applications is needed for use in computing the average price received by growers. This must be done before the payment rates for shorn wool and unshorn lambs can be determined. Since April 30 falls on Saturday this year, the final date for filing applications is May'2, 1960. The applications being filed at this time are to show all sales of wool, and unshorn lambs during the period between April 1, 1959 and March 31, I960. For a sale to be considered completed during that period, title must have passed to the "buyer, the wool must have been delivered, and the last of the factors needed to determine the net sales proceeds must be available. Prairie Pals Met Prairie Pals 4-H club met. at the home of Colleen Niedielski with LaVonne Studer as assistant hostess, recently. Talks were given by Colleen, Becky Lickteig, LaVonne Studer, Patty Loebig and Julie Kunz. Mrs Otmar Fis-' cher also spoke on caring for the hair and nails. Mary Ellen Ludwig and Paula Fischer had recreation. Hanover, Mrs Lucinda Biersiedt, Mr and Mrs Wayne Bellinger, and Mr and Mrs Theodore Meier. Ex-Whittemore Resident Dies At Sheldon WhiHemore — Many from this community attended the funeral of John William Koehnecke, 76, held Thursday afternoon in St. Paul's Lutheran church in Sheldon. Mr Koehnecke was born January 29, 1884 in Germany, and received his schooling there. On October 5, 1906 he was united in marriage with Martha Roeber and immediately thereafter left their homeland and came to America. They arrived in West Bend, in November of 1906 and established their home in Whittemore, where Mr Koehnecke obtained employment on the John Simpson farm. He then was employed as manager at the W. F. Reimers farm, then managed the Louis Wegener farm just east of Whittemore. In 1929 he was employed as section hand on the Milwaukee Railroad, and in a short period of time he became section foreman until 1952 when he retired at the age of 68. In 1937 they moved to Sheldon. Last Monday he suffered heart attack and passed way. He is survived by his wife of Sheldon, and son Erwin and family of Hartley, two brothers Henry and Adolph, and three sisters Mary, Martha and Anna o Elsdorf. His parents and two brothers preceeded him in death Those who from Whittemore at- Wil- Boy, 12, Brain Surgery Lakoia —<• Mrs Lena Schwarz and Mr and Mrs A. C. Klocke accompanied Mr and Mrs Clarence Schwarz of Blue Earth, Minn., ta Rochester on Saturday where they visited Neil Smith at St. Mary's hospital, where he is recuperating following brain surgery last week. His father, Roland Smith, Jr., returned home the first of the week but Mrs Smith is remaining in Rochester with him. Neil is 12 .years old. 4 On Dean's List At Iowa State Four students from this area at Iowa State University were named to the Dean's List for the winter quarter. They achieved an average of 3.5 for the quarter. On the list are Carole Wittkopf, daughter of Mr and Mrs G. A. Wittkopf of Algona: Eugene Stewart, son of Mr and Mrs Walter Steward'of Burt; and Richard Montag, son of Mr and Mrs Joseph Montag and Gerald Thatcher, son of Mr and Mrs George Thatcher, all of West Bend. State Conference Plans for a statewide conference to discuss the question of an Iowa constitutional convention were announced Thursday, Apr 7, by the League of Women Voters of Iowa and the Citizens Committee for the Constitutional ConvenUon, co-sponsors of the event. The one-day conference, which is open to the public, will be held at D«s Moines Apr. 20. The local League of Women Voters has sent invitations to 50 persons from Algona in hopes of getting a large delegation to attend. The local Let**ic has taken no stand on the constitu tiorial convrntion. Injured In Fall Mrs Gilbert Hargreaves, Lu- Verne, was taken to St. Ann hospital Mar. 30 after she fell from a chair and injured her head. Sh<* was wall papering at the time, lost her balance and fell backward. Mrs Henry Eisenbarth was with her at the time and summoned Mr Hargreaves who took his wife to the hospital. X-rays failed to reveal a concussion, but she will remain in the hospital until her headaches subside. Tuesday, April 19, 1960 Algona (la.) Upper DM Mdlfft»-9 In Honor Society Sandra Phillips, daughter of Mr and Mrs Grady Phillips, Algona, a freshman at State University of Iowa at Iowa City, is one oj! 46 coeds pledged 'to the SUI chap- tor of Alpha Lambda Delta, scholastic honor society for frc-sh- men women. Miss Phillips had to maintain a 3.5 grade average (or bettor) to" become rligi- ble for membership in Alpha Lambda Delta. Initiation for the pledges will be held in M;iy. Sandra is a 1959 graduate of Algona high school. School Registration < Registration for children entering St. Cecelia's school this fall will be; ht'ld Sunday, April 24. Parents are asked to come to the school after the 6, 7:30, 9 or 10:30 mass for registration. CATFISH Mrs Esther Norcloll of Cascade; Landing, near Burlington, caught, a 20 pound catfish with her bare hands. She saw the fish floundering in shallow water around tier home during a recent flood, and went after, it, catching it by hand. , 47 YEARS Mr Guy Mack of Storm Lake recently , was .presented , a plague recognizing 47 years of service in" Y.M.C.A. work. e a tcnded the lasl rites wer e, Wil- sales of ]iam Roeber) Mr and Mrs Melvin Roeber, Mr and Mrs Maynard Roeber, Mr and Mrs Wilbur Roe' ber Emma. Roeber, August Roe ber, William Hanover Sr., Mr anc Mrs William Hanover Jr., Mr and Mrs Lester Baas, Otto Bell, M and Mrs Alfred Bell, Mr and Mr Bernard Bell, Elmer Bell, Mr anc Mrs Arthur Heidenwith, Mr and Mrs George Meyer, Mr and Mr Thomas. Dunphy, Mr and Mr Arnold Gade, William Gade, M and Mrs Emil Biersted, Mr Mathilda Meyer, Mr and Mrs Wil liarri Meyer,. Sr., Mr and Mrs Er ___ '• __ o : ~ ^— n H H .. .-, « ft TVff »*p< TiffHfc i*»J ft w'in Siems, Mr and Mrs Schwint, Mr and. Mrs Rudolp 'if isi You can get your ELEPHANT BBANB FERTILIZER when you NEED It Your Elephant Brand dealer maintains an ample stock of Elephant Brand fertilizers - because nearby warehouses provide him with a fresh supply whenever needed. This delivery and supply system assures you of getting the Elephant Brand fertilizer you want when you require it. . ^^ ELEPHANT BBAND you •Lower Production "Cost fir unit With Elephant Brand you get bigger crops. This means each bushel, ton or crate costs you leas to grow ~ you get Lower Production Cost per unit -LPC- and MORE PROFIT per acre. 16-4I-0 16-20-0 29-23-0 832-16 10-30-10 13-13-13 14-14-7 NITRAPRILLS (Ammonium NiU»U) AMMONIUM SULPHATE Elephant Brand w ...r.5ubi. FERTILIZERS THE FARMER'S SIDE OF THE CASE YOU DON'T HAVE TO BE, A FARMER TO READ THIS ... BUT IT'S WELL WORTH READING, WHETHER YOU LIVE ON A FARM, IN TOWN OR A CITY. My husband Carl and I firmly believe that our farm—a large, beautiful, family-type farm — makes a substantial contribution to the economy and health of our country- Every day of the year the dairy herd on our farm produces enough milk to feed 1000 children their daily quart of milk. Our 720 acres of land are located in Allen County in Southeastern Kansas, an area of diversified crops and livestock. Our herd of 200 registered Holsteins—100 cows and 100 heifers—are considerably above average in production. We market Grade A milk, for which we receive premium prices. Our farm's gross income ranks in the upper 3 per cent of farms in the United States. Our farm is adequately capitalized and highly mechanized for large-volume production. Supposedly ours is a successful farm enterprise—and it has been. We bought our farm in 1939, making the down payment with money we -had saved for years, from Carl's modest salary as a county agent. Since then much of our life, our thought and our work has gone into building up our land and herd. The only trouble is that'since 1952 our farm has made little, if any, profit in good years—and in bad years, such as 1955, we have lost as much as $4058. By the end of 1958—a bumper-crop year—we had accumulated $7600 in unpaid bills for operating expenses. Last year we just about broke even, so we had to borrow $3500 at the bank to pay off the most pressing part of th'at $7000. ,. . * * * We now are caught in a merciless cost-price squeeze, and each year that economic turnbuckle tightens another notch. Bach in 1952 all political parties were in favor of 100 per cent of parity in purchasing power for the farmer; then there was no public hint of a national policy to drive down the prices,of food. Then we were getting 11 cents a quart for our milk. Now we are geting 8.1 cents. When that first slash in farm prices came six years ago, we doubled our milking herd in an effort to increase gross. income so that, in turn, we could meet our fixed charges such as interest and taxes—and the rising cost of things we must buy. We built a new laborsaving milking parlor— a sort of assembly line milking system—equipped with a pipeline milker and a bulk refrigeration tank. No expensive labor is wasted carrying milk buckets on our farm. But then came years when our crops were cut by drought, hail and wet wedther, and w.e fell behind on the feed bill for the cattle. In good years we struggled to catch up. We tripled the milking herd. Milk prices declined further. Costs went on up. We were on a treadmill, always running faster just to keep in the same place. While we were struggling to meet our expenses, we constantly were reassured by some of our spokesmen for agriculture that "efficient, commercial farms" were doing just fine. Statistics showed that average per-capita farm income to be just half of that for nonfarmors, but these figures didn't tell the true story, the spokesmen said, be- • cause they included 2,000,000 small, inefficient subsistence farmers who produced only a minute part of the nation's food supply. Also, so many people were leaving the farms that the income of agriculture, even though shrinking, was being divided among fewer and fewer farmers. And there were always success stories at the top. These were the farmers .who most often wereeought out for interviews and publicity. So it appeared that there was nothing the matter with anyone but us. Still our neighbors kept complaining, saying such things as "If I count a fair return on my investment I'm throwing in my labor free of charge." • ' * -* • * • At all meetings of farm organizations I have attended recently there is an undercurrent of despair—and there is a belief that the general public, seeing new stories about the surpluses and the farm subsidies, is not awafe of the true farm situation at all. . It was after this meeting that I began to wonder just what was happening to our kind of farmer—to the operator of the modern, bigger-than-average commercial farm. The fact is that the farmer has been getting a shockingly low return for his labor and skill. Wages lost in industrial strikes are microscopic compared to the loss ' which farmers have suffered in the last decade. And I mean" the commercial farmer,—the man who runs an agricultural enterprise with a capital investment of $54,800 per worked, about three times as large as the average industrial investment per worker. ^^ The usual farm-income figures, low as they are, don't accurately reflect 'he situation because they are computed as "net income" above production expenses and include the financial returns from investments in land and equipment that the farm family may have accumulated ov v er a lifetime of frugdlity-or may 'even represent the savings of several generations. The net income per farm also includes the labor of the entire family in producing such income. To this is added the value of whatever food the family may have raised for its own use, the rental value of the farm home-often an old farmhouse that is far from being "mod« ern" by urban standards of today. On top of this is put any off'the-farm income that some member of the family may have earned. All this is lumped into a thing called the "real REPRINTED (EXCERPTS FROM "SATURDAY EVENING POST" STORY By MARY CONGER . .. ISSUE OF APRIL 9, 1960. income" of the farm family, a figure that is used to disguise the disgraceful disparity of the actual wages earned by farmers for producing the nation's food. The farm-income figures also include any Government subsidies the farmer may have received. I am quite aware that many city people believe that farmers are getting richly paid by the Government for not growing crops, or in artificially supported prices for their farm products. I'm not going to argue that price supports don't cost the Government a lot of money or that Government storage of surplus crops is not expensive— but I do know these things aren't making farmer* prosperous. For the record, such Gov- • ernment programs have little effect on the income of farms. We have no land in the soil bank; we need it for our cows. Our milk price is not subsidized. * * * The most gigantic subsidy in the United States is not the Federal agricultural price-support program, but the unpaid or underpaid labor that farmers and their families contribute to the production of cheap food for the American people. Even in 1955, that year of crop failure when members of the Kansas Farm Management Association earned less than nothing, the average member produced $9000 worth of food, or so valued when sold at the farm price level. At the supermarket this per-man output of meat, . milk, eggs and bread cost housewives around $24,300. We farmers don't want sympathy, but we would like better understanding of what we are up against. We don't like to be accused of being greedy or of being tax-eating parasites. We don't like to have our "real income" misrepresented for political purposes. We know that an urban worker may also have income from investments, may enjoy certain fringe benefits, may live* in his own home without • paying rent, may raise food in his garden, and members of Kis family may hgye other jobs— all without being considered part of his wages. On the battleground of inflation farmers have been hit hard on all sides. The tractor we bought in 1950 for $2206 must new be replaced at $3800, but the milk that- brings in our income has dropped 27 per cent in price. Thus we are helping to pay the bill for the wage-price spiral on one front .and are absorbing a part of the consumer's grocery bill on the other. Now I know that groceries seem higher to the housewife, but that's because the housewife doesn't just buy flour and beans and potatoes these days; she buys more semi- processed foods, such as cake mixes and packaged frozen vegetables that are ready for the pot or oven. The manufacturer is doing more of the housewife's kitchen work for her, and he's charging her for that extra service. The truth is that food was never cheaper. People in the United States buy their food with the fewest hours of labor ever required in the history of mankind. Month after month the financial pages report Increases in the 'cost of housing, medical expenses, transportation and all the goods and service— except food: Food prices hold steady or go lower. It is impossible to figure exactly how much the nation's farmers have sacrificed to inflation. For example, I wonder what Triple C Farms milk would cost the consumer if it had increased in the same proportion as other living costs —forty cents a quart? Fifty cents? Perhaps it is just our hard luck-and the hard luck of millions of other farmers— to be in the business during a time of inflation, and also in a time when a great technological revolution is sweeping many of those farmers from the land. There are some people who believe the solution is obvious. They say, "If the nincompoops can't make a go of farming, why don't they got a job in town like everybody else?" And thousands of farm families are solving their individual problem in just that way. They are leaving the land. • Carl ai\d I will stay on our farm and ride out the storm. All our resources— education, experience, finances— have been committed to farming. We have had a busy, happy life on .our farm. Our children grew up here and helped with the farm work and were 4-H members. Still with us is our daughter, Carleen, a sixteen-year- old. But gone from home are our two sons— as soon as they came of age, we encouraged them not to stay on the farm but to leave and make their start in the business world without losing time. This they have done. Our son Gordon, twenty-five, is with a construction firm in Kansas City, and David, twenty-one, is a distributor for a bread company. Practically all their classmates have left the country. Very tew of th* onco-hopeful veterans who took on.the.form training oftor the war new remain in agriculture. They have been forced to 1 fmd other ways of making a living after losing ten youthful yea™ in a lost cause. As in so many rural «re«s, our neighborhood rapidly U becoming a place ' I sometimes wonder, why shouldn't farmers adopt the methods of other economic groups? Perhaps we should start with a 27 tt per cent soil-depletion allowance for income-tax purposes, the samo as the depletion allowance granted th« oil industry. However, I must admit that in- como'tax relief would be a hollow mockery to the millions of farmers who Vtn't making enough income to pay taxes. A KANSAS FARMER'S WIFE SAYS THE AMERICAN PUBLIC HAS NOT BEEN GETTING A TRUE PICTURE - AND TELLS WHY! And then there's the strike weapon. How about a 116-day farm strike? Farmers make up 12 per cent of the population and receive only 5 per cent of the total gross national product, so a booming economy shouldn't suffer much from this little loss. In fact, the nation could survive on all those surpluses we're always complaining about. Of course, a diet of bread and corn-meal mush might get tiresome—without even cheese or meat to'make sandwiches after the first week. But look what we'd save on storage costs. " Of course, if farmers struck for a few months, about 40 per cent of the nation's labor force would have to be laid off—all those engaged t in processing and marketing food and those who sell services and supplies to agriculture. Things might get slightly dull, too, for the steel, petroleum and transportation industries with one of their major customers out of business. It's hard to imagine just what phrases the financial page would use to describe a farm strike after months of referring to steel as the "most basic industry." Comfortably overfed as we now are, it's easy to forget that for countless aeons of time mankind devoted his entire time and energy to the acquisition of just enough, food for -survival. Only recently has man been able to produce enough surplus food to enable him to develop his intellect and finally think of such things as steel. How about the immutable old law of supply and demand? Has anyone ever considered whether or not the nation would like to have its food supply reduced to the precarious scarcity that would be necessary to raise prices to a fair level in the market place? If the country wants a comfortable margin of food over and above our immediate daily needs, who should pay for this insurance? Should farmers be expected to carry the entire 'premium- in .the form of depressed prices? While a farmer does not want to become a ward of the Government there are some suggested remedies that give him the,uncomfortable suspicion that he is being told, • "This operation is going to be painful, and you may not survive. But it surely will cure what ails you." Just exactly how "free" is the free economy to which agriculture is supposed to be returned? In a period of recession which is supposed to bring about adjustments, people refuse to buy, yet prices do not drop; there is unemployment, yet wages do not decline. Other parts of our economy seem to have developed some gimmicks that rather effectively prevent a "free" economy from adjusting itself at their expense. Agriculture already is one of the most competitive of all enterprises. All different foods compete for the limited space in the human stomach. Geographical areas are pitted against one another for a share of the market. Efficiency of production is a relentless pressure within the industry, ruthlessly grinding the less fortunate into the necessity of accepting failure. And then the industry as a whole competes against all other economic groups for a fair share of the nation's income. Perhaps we should return the rest of the economy to the competitive status o* agriculture! i * * When the nation's farmers totaled their records for 1959, they found that their income had declined 15 peri cent from the year before. All predictions now are for a further downhill slide in 1960. Not a single economist forecasts any significant improvement in the farm-income situation in the years ahead. There is every evidence that the farmer has the technical ability to expand production even faster than the population increases for quite a few years to come. The farm surpluses will be with us for a long time. And there is no sound,unified program to meet this situation. The voice of the farmer is weak and faltering because the several national farm organizations which are supposed to speak for him are deadlocked in uncompromising disagreement on possible solutions. They have taken fixed positions and continue to defend them, come what may, while the situation steadily worsens. How then, if we are losing money, do we—Car! and Mary Conger—manage to hang on? We have done it, thus far, by the very inflationary force which threatens to destroy us. Inflation operates in strange ways, and while it has put our income in a cost-price squeeze, it has caused a rise in land values. Also, the desperate need to grow larger, for efficiency's sake, has caused farmers themselves to bid up the price of land. Thus our farm, like most others, is worth more each year—on paper—and we borrow against that increased value to meet our losses. We know this is a dangerous process, one that is under way in much of agriculture, one that could engulf us all unless the decline in farm income can be halted. Meanwhile we tighten our belts. We put off reshing- ling the roof yet another year. And we don't really need a new refrigerator—the old one ha* run for seyenteen years without stopping. We hang on, knowing that for farmers everywhere there will be more debts, a gradual lots of their equity in their land and a widespread fear that someday, unless something is done, the scales will tip too far, and family farms such as ours wil be a thing of the past. This Artielo Rtprinled and Paid For iy Several tusineismen And Farmers Who Believe It Has Worthwhile, Thought. Provtklnf teadlufNrAllOfU*, .

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