If you ever get the chance to see and listen to Dr. Temple Grandin, Trent Loos, Jason Brown and Congressman Mark Green you will go home inspired. Even one would be enough, but all four spoke at the Tennessee Cattlemen’s Winter meeting on Monday. What a way to start a new year!
You may know that Temple Grandin has written a dozen books and had a movie made about her work as an autistic expert. Given her autism, she “sees” her surroundings just like a cow or a dog does. I met her in 1974 at an agricultural engineering conference. For fifty years she has influenced the design of cattle handling facilities on ranches, at beef feedlots, and meat processing plants. And she is a powerful advocate for anyone with autism.
Trent Loos is a rancher who broadcasts “Loos Tales” on radio and social media. He is an engaging speaker who connects rural and urban audiences, especially youngsters.
If you haven’t heard of Jason Brown, check him out. He was a star center for the St. Louis Rams (now in Los Angeles) who left football to buy and operate a 1000-acre “First Fruits Farm” in North Carolina. His family grows vegetables, including sweet potatoes and cucumbers, and donates the crops to relieve hunger.
I got to annoy the same fine bunch of cowmen and women as their after-dinner speaker. Veterinarian Hugh McCampbell laughed at all my jokes even though I left out his favorite line: “The best doctor in the world is the Veterinarian. He can’t ask his patients what is the matter – he’s got to just know.” (1927). My old friend John Bradley not only raises some of the best beef in Tennessee but knows more about growing cotton without plowing than anybody. Kate Maher represented the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association.
Vaughn Moore was in the audience and explained to me afterwards that wine and grape juice are not the same. And he quoted the Old Testament, (Numbers, Chapter 6:3) to prove it. Well, I already knew they were different, and not just in price, but it’s good to know the Bible agrees with me.
After a raucous week in Congress, the Republicans finally agreed Friday night on Kevin McCarthy as Speaker, on the 15th vote. On the first 14 votes as many as 20 were against the 200 who supported McCarthy, and they refused to budge. They appeared to vote against McCarthy, but in reality they were voting against the dictatorial reign of Speaker Nancy Pelosi. They insisted on, and received, assurances individual House members would have more rights concerning budgets, amendments, voting procedures, and committee assignments.
If you are a Republican concerned that another Californian is replacing Speaker Pelosi, don’t be. He is from Bakersfield, in the eastern, common-sense part of the state.
Did you see President Biden beside the Rio Grande River at El Paso today as he watched immigrants wading across and entering the U.S. illegally, as about 25 Border Patrol agents, including 4 on horseback, let them through? He was protected by bullet-proof glass as he peered across the river at Drug Cartel coyotes. (He didn’t need the protection because they all love our President.)
What? He never went to the river? He didn’t see any illegal immigrants? Ok, I guess he was too busy talking with Texans mad about immigrants invading their roads, homes and ranches. What? He didn’t see any of them either? Oh well, at least he got to enjoy some shirt-sleeve weather on his way to Mexico City.
This week I’ll be in St. Louis with several hundred farmers who are growing corn, soybeans, wheat and other crops without ever plowing. Yes, it works. The “no-till” system produces plenty of crops, reduces costs, and benefits all of us by improving water and air quality, and reducing global warming.
I saw that environmentalists are suggesting instead of throwing out our Christmas trees that we eat them. If they insist, they are welcome to chew on my Norway Spruce. Meanwhile I’ll chew on a T-bone steak.
Historic quotes by Will Rogers:
During the 15 votes in Congress, several folks pointed out that Will Rogers needs to switch his famous quote. So, here it is, reversed: “I’m not a member of any organized political party… I’m a Republican.”
“There will never be any class of people in our country that can replace the old cowman for common sense, humor and fine citizenship.” DT #2606, Dec. 12, 1934
“With every public man we have elected doing comedy, I tell you we don’t see much of a chance for a comedian to make a living…. They can do more funny things naturally, than I can think of to do purposely.” WA #57, Jan. 13, 1924