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Letters – for Sep. 8, 2011

Appreciate the coverage

I extend words of appreciation for the August 25 Co-operator!The editorial highlighted good science that is well ahead of the curve when it detailed “ECO Farming.”

Concerning the “new reporter,” Shannon VanRaes, please detail more of what you saw “growing up near Tillsonburg (and) “watching a way of agricultural life fade into the history books on my family’s tobacco farm!” With so much at stake surrounding the Prairie farmer’s CWB’s single desk and our collective future, Ontario’s tobacco-farming story cannot come soon enough. Then, perhaps a story on peaches…?

Turning to the letter section, I value Bill Toew’s kind-hearted correction. And I welcome Toews’ move from wondering if “this battle is over” to “think(ing) the tide is shifting… (and) just getting started.”

Last, but not least, I treasure how Jack Madill has figured out who will profit from the carrot of “marketing choice”…, only to disclose, “I still haven’t figured out why our minister of agriculture is so keen to do their bidding.”

Jack, for your answer, please see item 3, page 3 of the federal election Nomination Paper (form EC 20010) which in effect stipulates that regardless of how many thousands of Canadians might endorse a candidate, such will not be listed on the ballot as a party candidate unless and until the nomination paper is “signed by the leader of the party.”

How does this effect the candidate’s nose? Nor is this the only one-sided election rule. With such a pecking order enshrined in Canadian law, one that no Canadian party leader takes exception to, Green and NDP included; this then raises the question, who is Harper’s puppeteer? In his own word, formerly as corporate Canada’s mouthpiece as the spokesperson for the front self-named as the National Citizens Coalition, please see his words archived at

Eduard Hiebert St. Francois Xavier

Recipe for CWB failure

The voice of Prairie farmers will be heard on Sept. 9, when results of the Canadian Wheat Board’s producer plebiscite on its future are released by Meyers, Norris, Penny.

The CWB’s board of directors will respect the results of this plebiscite. If a majority of farmers wants to end the single desk for barley or wheat, we will actively support the transition to an open market. I am calling on Minister Gerry Ritz and the Government of Canada to also respect farmers’ wishes.

Throughout the plebiscite voting period, which began in late July, many farmers have asked what the CWB will look like without a single desk. The short answer is this: there won’t be a CWB once the single desk is dismantled. A new organization may or may not be created, but it will be nothing like the existing CWB.

In recognition that the government may proceed with its plan to remove the CWB single desk by Aug. 1, 2012, without consulting farmers, we have been in close contact with federal officials throughout the summer. We have made them aware that the CWB cannot offer farmers anywhere near the same value without a single desk. We have made them aware of the costs of winding down the current CWB.

We have also been very clear that a new CWB cannot be created without an infusion of significant operating and financing capital, regulated access to terminals, assistance in an ownership structure, and other measures to safeguard a fledgling company in its formative years.

This is where we have hit a roadblock. We simply cannot proceed further until the government shares its vision for a new organization. Minister Ritz says he wants a “strong and viable” organization. But with no money to pay farmers for grain, no ability to finance operations, no place to accept deliveries and no way to move grain to customers, a new entity cannot survive. That is a recipe for failure.

Allen Oberg Chair, CWB board of directors Forestburg, Alta. 25 press release has fallen tragically short.

You could write volumes about what this outfit doesn’t know and worse yet, doesn’t understand on this file. Sometimes when you are unsure or don’t have any knowledge about something you are better to listen than to talk and remove all doubt.

From what I’ve seen so far, the people in such an organization as WCWGA would be ill advised to attempt to market their own grain. You must do some homework if you are going to weigh in on an issue like this and be taken seriously.

Democracy is the way stupid ideas don’t rise to the top. It is what we are fighting life and limb for in other nations right now. Let’s fight for some at home too.

Andrew Dennis Brookdale, Man.

Please forward letters to Manitoba Co-operator, 1666 Dublin Ave., Winnipeg, R3H 0H1 or Fax: 204-954-1422 or email: [email protected] (subject: To the editor)



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