Dear Farm Journal,
Today I was wrapped into a 45 minute farm rant from Rich. As an ex dairy farmer, he has a lot to say about how food policy is “unbelievable” and “outrageous”, especially after he has had a few “Sneaky Petes”. I learned about “Sneaky Petes” when I came to the farm, a diabolical, probably chemically unsound concoction of Mickeys fine malt liquor and the cheapest vodka that the Zip Stop sells. The design of the Mickeys bottle has a convenient re screwable cap, perfect for adding vodka and then carrying it around the farm. After a few pulls from this poison, Rich recalls all that is wrong with the world of agriculture, and it always stems back to Ronald Reagan and milk parity. “That’s when I started drinking more”, he will say, cursing the legislative decisions that put so many dairy farmers out of business in this area. I know that he is right. I know that the decisions that built today’s food system were not made on behalf of farmers, and I know that we have to do something, but I don’t know what. The sick irony of being a farmer with the heart of an activist is that you run out of time, money, and energy to make a difference off the farm, hence the “Sneaky Petes”.