Newspaper reports Farm Bureau hurt by Measure 49 support

The Capital Press is reporting that the Oregon farm Bureau is facing a backlash and revenue loss due to their support of Measure 49 the property rights rollback measure. One county saw a 25% decline in members. Excerpt from article below:

When the Oregon Farm Bureau kicked off its 75th annual meeting, amidst its celebrations there were expressions of frustration on how the state Farm Bureau supported Measure 49 in the last special election. Executive members of the Farm Bureau acknowledged the stand on land use hurt the organization, but also defended why it did so. During discussion on the budget on Dec. 4, already several people expressed they are upset that the OFB board took a stand on Measure 49.

An exasperated Bud Combe of Josephine County said “it cost us millions on our ranch.” A strong majority of voters in his county had voted against for Measure 37 and against Measure 49 on land use issues. “How many times do we have to take a damn lickin’ in the state of Oregon?” he said…”We’ve had the lowest number of county Farm Bureaus make goal this year, at nine, that we’ve had since the last big dues increase in 2001 when only 8 made goal,” said Dillon.

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  • John Fairplay

    One of the problems you can run into with a board-run organization is that a minority can “take over” control of the organization by getting its adherents elected to the Board.

    The Farm Bureau has only begun to pay the price. Who will work with it to achieve its Legislative goals? Who will stand up to stop legislation the Farm Bureau wants killed? When you switch teams, as the Farm Bureau has done, you are then dependent on your new team for help. I hope Oregon’s radical environmental lobby and high priests of restrictive land-use planning are ready to help make it easier to farm and ranch in Oregon.


      Much like the current state of the GOP!

  • Jerry

    I hope the Farm Bureau keeps feeling the pain. The idiots. They more than deserve what they are getting. They are fools.

  • Steven

    We don’t need no stinken farm bureau! When Oregon becomes a state park we won’t have anymore farms.

  • Debbie

    Farmers reap what they sew… I hope the farm bureau goes down in flames! 49 is going to ruin Oregon.

    DLCD The Department of Lies and Constant Delays will work hard to mess with the little people because 49 took care of the little guy trying to do something.

    What an evil state!


      I for one will no longer support any farm subsidy that I have the ability to vote against or influence. I’m not sure if I’ll ever be able to pay them back but the farmers ignorance has definitely lost them a supporter!!!!!

      • dean

        CD…Oregon farmers don’t get subsidies other than property tax breaks. Federal subsidies go to the Midwest grain farmers and the southern cotton farmers.

        • CRAWDUDE

          Cite your information source for that please, I’d like to read that one myself. I know 3 people who recieve subsidies in Idaho but I don’t know any in Oregon, so before I contradict you I’d like to see your source, Thanks Dean.

  • lw

    Dean, wheat farmers get subsidies, or subsidies not to grow wheat or other crops. My uncle does pretty well at it. Where are you from?

    • dean

      My error. I was referring to W. Valley farmers, which is where I have a wee farm (Damascus). Wheat, corn, soybeans and cotton make up about 90% of all federal subsidies, and wheat is grown in E Oregon, a bit in the west as well.

    • dean

      Some stats:
      9000 Oregon farmers got $86.4 million in federal subsidies last year. Presumably most of that goes to eastern Oregon wheat farmers.
      119,000 Iowa corn & soybean farmers got 2.2 BILLION…
      30,000 Georgia farmers got 428 Million.
      Cotton is the most subsidized crop at $230 per acre. Those southern, cotton growing Republican states are doing pretty well on our tax money eh?

      • CRAWDUDE

        Dean, can you give me the stats on the difference in the number of farms in each state you just listed, size of the average farm and total acerage of farmage state wide?

        You’re thrashing on this one Dean, walk away. I’ve had to before too!

        Yes, the majority of the money goes to states that have the largest farming communities but proportionally each farmer is given the same subsidy to either grow or not grow a particular crop.

        • dean

          CD… I would assume Iowa has more farm acreage, but not necessarily more farms. Georgia may be similar to Oregon in numbers. The thing with farms is that only a fraction are full time commercial operations, so stats on farm numbers can be misleading.

          California is the largest farm producer by value, and their subsidy amount is relatively small like Oregon’s, because we grow similar crops and not much grain or cotton. Both are blue states by the way.

          I don’t know what thrashing is. I was just pointing out where Oregon stands to show that if you boycott subsidized farms you may hurt Iowa more than Oregon. And ironically, it is eastern Oregon farmers, who probably voted for 37 and against 49, who most benefit from subsidies in this state. The grape growers and nurserymen are free market farmers.

          Come to think of it, the big farm subsidy states are mostly red states. What do you make of that?

          The source was listed on a NOW PBS program. Just do a search on farm subsidies by state and it will come up. I’m sure the Department of Agriculture is the ultimate source for their data.

          • CRAWDUDE

            I meant thrashing around trying to justify your statements, which can be proven questionable with my faithful calculator and my computers search engine:

            “Some stats:
            9000 Oregon farmers got $86.4 million in federal subsidies last year. Presumably most of that goes to eastern Oregon wheat farmers.
            119,000 Iowa corn & soybean farmers got 2.2 BILLION…
            30,000 Georgia farmers got 428 Million.
            Cotton is the most subsidized crop at $230 per acre. Those southern, cotton growing Republican states are doing pretty well on our tax money eh”?

            Dividing 9000 into 119000 give me 13.2 , multiplying that by 86 million comes up with roughly 1.1 billion about half of what Iowa gets but as you pointed out certain commodities get more than others. We would need to know the acerage of farming to be even more accurate.

            Dividing 30,000 by 9000 gives to 3.3 for a total of 370 million if Oregon had the same amount of farms as Georgia ( a 58 million dollar difference).We would need to know the acerage of farming to be even more accurate.

            Now with Georgia being a heavily GOP state that doesn’t seem like that big of a subsidy dollar difference.

            Iowa isn’t a southern state nor a GOP state, therefore you were purposely omitting them when devising your statement. Iowa is midwest and it looks like they are pulling in 2 dollars in subsidies to every 1 Georgia ( and Oregon) is getting. Since Iowa is a democratic state with the governor and 1 senator both DNC it flys in the face of your statement that “southern cotton growing Republican states are doing pretty well”

            It looks to me like the DNC controlled midwest states are getting the lions share of subsidy money. Unfortunately your fellow DNC’ers aren’t giving the Oregon farmers the same amount of love as the midwestern.

            Hey, do you know why the Mississippi flows down?………cuz Iowa sucks!……….plus their cheerleaders graze at half time, which is why many of their football fields are having astro-tuff installed.

          • dean

            CD…I went to college in Iowa, have heard all the jokes, and nevertheless met more than my share of way cute Iowa farm girls in my day, your tasteless joke aside.

            Cotton is the most subsidized crop on a PER ACRE basis according to the data that I used. And it is grown in the heavily Republican south. Make of it what you will.

            Iowa is at best a swing state. It edged to Gore in 2000, and edged to Bush in 2004. Senator Grassly is an Iowa farmer and influential Republican senator. Tom Harkin is a Democrat. Those Iowans are smart by the way, and know how to cover their bets. They straddle the fence row.

            Kansas, Nebraska, Indiana and the Dakotas are all strongly red and heavily farm subsidized. Minnesota, Wisconsin and Illinois are blue and heavily subsidized. The midwestern subsidies are a new deal legacy tied to the collapse in grain prices during the depression, given a big boost by the Nixon administration.

            I actually think red-blue matters less than green (money) in this case. I was just tweaking you. Add up the total number of senators from the south and Midwest and you have a lot of votes for farm subsidies to keep on keeping on regardless of which party runs the show for the moment.

            Which is why Americans have more corn in our bodies than even Mexicans, who first cultivated corn and live by it. We now have corn in everything, from chicken mcnuggets to soft drinks. Our bovines have been force fed corn in filthy feed lots because it is cheaper than having them graze actual grass. And now we are burning corn in our gas tanks. Its an amazing story really. One plant has conquered a nation.

            Try boycotting corn and you will need to become a vegan. A cornless vegan even.

          • CRAWDUDE

            Damn! Upon further review my fuzzy math was incorrect in Georgia! It’s $100 per acre!

            I was wrong , you were right 🙁 Set , point, match!!!


    Sorry, I’m from Minnesota, the Iowa jokes are a genetic implant.

    As for the cotton subsidies they’ve been around a long time so placing the blame on the GOP is a bit disingenious.

    I did compile some acerage stats since my last post.

    Georgia produces roughly: 1.35 miliion acres of cotton, 565,000 peanut, 330,00 corn, 240,000 soybean, 24,000 tabacco, 500,000 sorgum (whatever that is) , 333,000 wheat, 100,000 oats and 650,000 hay. That’s a total of approx $10 of subsidy per acre, using the numbers supplied by you earlier.

    Oregon produces roughly: 900,000 wheat, 50,000 barley, 60,000 potatoes, 500,000 grass seed and 400,000 corn. That’s a total of $43 per acre is subsidies.

    The Iowanians have 12.8 million acres of corn, 10.3 million of soybeans and about 7 million of other commodities(got sick of typing). That’s a total of $66 dollars per acre in subsidies.

    I take back my last statement in the previous post, your DNC controlled congress is taking great care of the DNC aligned states!

    You can tout the “cotton” red herring all you want, the overall result is the better example.


      See the above post………………..all this work for nothing!

      • dean

        CD..every man his own research department. Ya gotta love the internet.

        Interesting that Oregon’s corn acreage is that high. I just don’t see much corn when I travel through the valley. Are you sure that isn’t a typo?

        Sorgum is closely related to corn, or at least looks to my eye like it is. It is used for animal feed. Not sure what else.

        Cotton subsidies date back to when the south was solidly Democratic, albeit “conservative” (as in southern racist, anti-union, anti-Catholic, anti Jewish, anti outside agitating liberals like me) Democratic. It began shifting to the GOP after the Dems passed the civil rights bill in 64. You must have heard of Nixon’s southern strategy. And Reagan gave his opening spech in his 80 campaign in Philadelphia Mississippi on the (cross) burning topic of “state’s rights.”

        The cotton subsidy is the last indefensible thing about that region that will be given up. They will burn the Confederate flag first.

        • CRAWDUDE

          Yes, it was 60,000 acres between feed and sweet corn. I also found a Hay reference at 540, 000 acres which would drive my estimate down some too!

          I don’t think any subsidy will ever go away no matter who is in charge if you want my honest opinion. Once somebody gets something others don’t they eventually get to the point where they are able to rationalize that they are entitled to it.

          I did see a post once where a person made a good argument for farm subsidies. They stated that it was much easier to pay them to keep the farming techniques in the hands of many than drive them out forever. You never know when a situation will arise where we will need all that our farmers can produce ( such as alternative energy sources). Kinda like AMTRAK, we’d never want to loose the ability to ship by rail if necessary.

          • dean

            CD…you are starting to sound like a dang liberal now. Be careful where that penetrating mind might lead you.

            60K acres of corn sounds more plausible. As a small time hay farmer, I can assure you that hay is not subsidized. Wish it was.

            There is an emerging coalition of conservationists, “foodies,” free marketers, and others who are gathering the strength to take on the traditional farm subsidy lobby. If people only would make the connection that subsidizing corn has contributed mightily to our obesity epidemic, which has blown health care costs (public and private) through the roof, there would be a quick end to the corn fiasco.

            Subsidies are not saving farms. They are keeping some farmers in the wrong business. Unlike our local situation, Midwestern and Great Plains states are not in the urban growth business, so if 25 or 50% of their farms went broke they would not be built over. More likely they would be re-seeded to native prairie grasses and after an initial economic dislocation, all would actually be better. Iowa needs more prairie, not more corn.

            It is also little known or appreciated that our farm subsidies end up impoverishing farmers in 3rd world countries. Many Mexican “illegals” migrated here when the price of corn collapsed in their country because NAFTA opened their markets to our subsidized corn. Bad idea all around.

            But wait…I’m starting to sound like a free marketer! What gives?

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