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Lethbridge Herald Newspaper Archives

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Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - April 19, 1973, Lethbridge, Alberta THE irTHBBIDGf HERAID Thursday, April 19, 1973- What big profits? Small farmers still hoe a tough row BURBANK. Ohio (NBA) For most of his 41 years Win- ston Wyckoff has lived in the quiet anonymity of an 800-acre farm south of Cleveland. Grow- ing crops. Milking cows. Feed- ing cattle. Now suddenly, he says. "I'm a damn celebrity." You know it's a serious matter when Winston Wyckoff says damn. Darn is his usual ex- pletive. Or dagnabit. But these are hectic times when, sigh, only damn will do. Celebrity? In one recent week Wyckoff was interviewed per- sonally by three newspaper- men, placed for several min- utes on one area television sta- tion, telephoned by several oth- er media representatives, and invited to an open-line radio program. Sighs Wyckoff: "I haven't even had time to do the chores." But bother the chores right now! For the first time in his life Farmer Wyckoff has the attention, if not necessarily the sympathy, of the public. After SAND GRAVEL ASPHALT TOLLESTRUP SAND AND GRAVEL Construction Co. Ltd. PHONE 328-2702-327-3610 years of wondering if "anybody got to fight the weather, dls- out there" knew or cared he ease and everything else. For was alive, he now knows they I this I hope to get two or three do loudly. And he's not a j per cent return on my farm man to let the opportunity slip. I A lifelong cattleman, board j chairman cf the Ohio Beef Market Program, a respected executive cf several farm or- ganizations, he says he's going I don't. Sometimes money and have to go to the bank to get enough money to start again." TRUTH Truth is. the small farmer to take this chance to educate i hag (js) taken for grant- the public whether the pub-1 v'yckcffs argument may be familiar but it is disturbingly have correct. He simply cannot con- tinue to produce his product unless he passes his rising costs on down the line to the con- lie likes it or not. Lesson one: "Farmers to make a profit like anybody else." Lesson two: Never mind les- son two, lesson one says it all. NO BARON Wyckoff. 41, is not a cattle baron. He's a small farm, oner- ator 600 head a year in a state that does not mature enough livestock to feed its own population. But when it comes to the controversy over rising meat prices, Wyckoff beGeves he's wholly significant. He says it's never very easy ot be a small farmer, but current acti- vities could make it almost im- possible. Food boycotts and an- gry government reactions, he says, will not seriously affect the corporation growers of Am- erica, "but they might help put peoDle like me out of business.'' Wyckoff's argument is a fam- iliar one. He feels that as his costs rise so should his charges. But whenever they do. as they have in recent weeks, he is announced as greedy. Greedy? got 800 acres of farm. 560 of them tillable. I work all day, almost every day. I've IT PAYS TO LEASE! Leasing frees your working capital Leasing provides reliable transportation at low cost You just sign a contract and pay ONE regular monthly feo Your lease can include maintenance, licence and insurance coverage Contact BORIS KORESHENKOV, leasing and Insurance Dept. BENY AUTOMOTIVE ENTERPRISES LTD. 2nd Ave, 9th St. S. Phone 328-1101 surasr. And prices have been rising dramatically for farmers. The cost of machinery alone has leaped out of sight a com- bine, as example, sells for 000, a tractor and a feed loader or at least Labor costs, in some areas, have grown by half since the middle 1960s (meat trucking wages in Ohio have increased 70 per cent since A silo on the Wyckoff farm which cost to build a few years ago now costs The man's taxes alone, a year, are almost half the salary of the average American family. Even fertili- zer is outrageously high: "I spent last year for 150 tons of tha stuff." Besides this there is the con- tinually awesome risk involved in the business. One Ohio cat- tleman, Wally Nelson, says he recently bought a load of feed- er calves for an average S400 apiece and 50 of them died, a loss. Other cattlemen complam that the market fluc- tuates so much that "a guy who sells today may make a profit but a guy who sells tomorrow may not." NOT OWN MAN Nelson, for one, says he re- cently sold cattle at market for S30 to (a hundredweight) profit but in 1968 and 1969 he sold similar cattle at approxi- mately that much loss. "All of us little guys owe our souls to the says one cattleman. "You never can call yourself your own man." And even those small farm- ers who are relatively success- ful that is, ''have more good' years that bad" are usually cash poor. Charles Rupp, one of Ohio's largest cattle head a around three quarter feeders says he earns a year on a million invest- ment; and if something went wrong during a given year, say a strong housewife boycott, he says he could easily wind up that much in the hole. Thus obviously, says Rupp, "I don't think too highly of a woman shopper in Los Angeles mess- ing around with my margin." UNFAIR koff. that the boycotts and threats of boycotts are unfair. They say people should not ex- pect to pay 1960's prices for 1970 meat. Besides, they believe the average consumer isn't really so stung at today's mar- ket. Wyckoff carries around a chart which indicates that in 1951 the average disposable in- come in the nation was a year, of which 23 per cent went for food; but in he adds, "the average disposable income was of which only 15 per cent was for food." Put another way, says Wally Nelson: "In 1951 the average consumer could buy 1.7 pounds of beef with one hour's work in 1972 he could buy 3.3 pounds with the same work time. That's a pretty healthy statistic." Moreover, the men insist the average consumer is paying part of their grocery bill these Jays for nonfarm products. "I've got a wife and I know CONSUMERS In short, Winston Wyckoff and fellows believe that con- sumers can afford the food in- creases more than most farm- ers can afford food cuts. The average family income in Am- erica is now more than 000 a year up more than 61 per cent from 1965. New car sales this year (expected to be 11.2 million) may set a record. Sixteen million TV sets (half of them color) will be sold be- rore December; new pleasure boats are being man- tfactured this year. Grurups one Ohio cattleman: 'People are living high. Spend- ing more. Cars cost more, clothes east more, even booze costs move. Why shouldn't good red meal more The argument is undeniably strong. says Wyckoff, sloshing through the spring read, "I don't want people to force me back to the old cattle prices. And by damn (that word again) I won't let them. If I can't sea a fair profit feeding livestock next year I won't raise any. I'll raise crops and sell them. And I know a lot of farmers who feel the same. If the wo- men think the prices are high row, wait'll they see them when there's a shortage of beef." Instant celebrity cattle raiser Winston has public's attention ,'ii not its sympathy. The Georgians of Russia Italians of the Soviet Union? By STEPHENS BROEN1NG TRTTTOT bazaars, inspired by a poetry S fiel'Ce> communism a Tn ,1 somber and the haughty, of the near-stranger hero to erything in one grand gesture. Aarice is Avance ls takes a visitor to this Soviet city to Lenin Square where there is a statue of the founder. SELLS PRODUCE In the background, on the bank If you're in the market for a car loan, get it from the Royal Bank... of the Kura River, ig an im- mense monument of Mother Georgia, holding a sword in front of her skirts. Tte visitor is led to a place on the square and told, "Look." From there it appears that Mother Georgia's blade is de- capitating Lenin. "We are the Italians of the Soviet a Georgian in- tellectual declares. "We are skeptics. We have a sense of how to live." Under the successive in- fluence of Greeks, Romans, Mongols, Georgia Persians endured and Turks, without a break in its cultural existence. It took the Red army to im- pose Bolshevism, and Georgia endures the system the Rus- sians created. More than that, the Georgians bend communism to folkways formed millenia ago behind the barrier of the Cauc- asus, patterns of life molded on mountain slopes and in raucous To sepnd, one must acquire, and this the Georgians do, pour- ing through every leak in the system. On one end of the scale the Georgian peasant, in the well-tended cottage he is likely to own, loads suitcases full of fruit and vegetables and flies to Moscow, miles to the north, where he sells his goods at inflated prices on the free market to Russians shopping in a scarcity economy. On the other end of the regis- ter is the big-time privateer typified by Otari Lazishvili. who organized a network of under- ground factories turning out things, from radios to raincoats, that the official economy does not sufficiently produce. Lzdsh- vili prospered for years before he was caught and sent to prison. In Georgia this is con- sidered no more than a risk of doing business. A Georgian scholar who has lived most of his life in Moscow would like to go home, but says he can't afford it. "I don't have the time to hustle. I can't compete with the clerk who makes (officially) 75 rubles a month and will spend 500 rubles in an evening." fluency in Russian. Yet most ot the party slogans in the cities. villages and on factory walls are in the Russian language. Several Georgians main- tained, without official' con- firmation, that English now He finds the Russian bustles I the second language in Geor- almost as much as the Geor- gian, though not as success- fully, but doesn't talk about it. "He's afraid his neighbor will denounce him." As a matter of fact, the trav- eller is struck by the openness of the Georgians, their frank- ness of speech. Conversations are not conducted with the usual over-the-shoulder anxiety. People speak their minds. RUSSIANS ENVIOUS The Georgian lifestyle evokes envy from the Russian, frequently immersed in jokes. There is the one concerning the train from Tbilisi to Moscow, about to depart. The station- master announces, "Train No. 14 is leaving on Track 2 for the Soviet Union." The gians many measures. According to the 1970 census, only 21 per cent of the 3.1 million who speak a language of unde- termined to gap between the Geor- and the Russians has glan primary schools, taking preference over Russian. Stalin is another case. He is openly toasted in Tbilisi, though Moscow posthumously roned him in 1956. In deth- Gori, where Stalin was born as Josef Vissarionovich Dzhugashvili. there are monuments, portraits and a museum. On the train to Gori, an old woman, all in black, sells mint-condition pho- tographs of Stalin. Back in Tbilisi the talk Is of Eduard Shevardnadze, the for- mei police chief who recently replaced Vasily Mzhavanadze as Georgian party leader. Shevardnadze is a puritan as- signed by Moscow to cleanse the wayward. What do you think of the tolerant Mzhava- nadze, the traveller asked his hosts. Thumbs up all around. And Sheverdnadze? "He wants discipline." Will he get it? The answer was an emphatic Mediterranean shrug. and we'll pay toward your plates! It's very simple. We have in crisp new to put in your hand the moment we put through a Termplan Personal Loan for you. for or more of new money. before June 29th. No catches, no strings. No change in our interest Plus: life-insurance M no extra cost. You don't have to be a Royal Bank customer. Il s a good good that you may wonder what's in it for us. Well, personal lending is a very important part of our business. We knew that there are many people in the market for money this spring, and we want to increase our share of the business. So. we're offering you the best incentive we know thing we know We haven't changed our interest rates, and there are no hid den charges hope to make the money back from ibe mcrrase volume. And you, the borrower, can reap ihe benefit nov- with the assurance that the Royal Bant- never knowngly let yoj get in over your triad. It doesn't matier whether you bank wh us or not. and The only account you'll need to open is a chequing ectount for the loan repayments. This ofter appl'es to anybody who can qualify for a loan. Just talk to vow local Royal Bank manager before June 29. you'll be in a better position to make best deal if you know you've got the money. So snsngg loan before you shoo for the car Or, if you need a loan for something else, we still give you ..hi cash. mg ciie we can g've a 40 page book cs''ed "Your Money wiih lots of sound advice on managing your fmanDes. Il s jUit one o5 the many helpful services you'il find at your Royal Bank branch. Do something nice for yourself at the ROYAL BANK The Lethbridgc Herald think PART IV PICTURE QUIZ 5 POINTS This hockey star has been an asset to tiie- Montreal Canadiens in the Stanley Cup play- offs. What's his name? HOW 00 YOU RATE? B> 100 1W> KflRB SI prim CmrftaL tlfoTOptMi CO or Undo? 11- YOUR NEWS QUIZ PART! NATIONAL AND INTERNATIONAL Give yourself 10 points for each correct answer, 1 The Consumer Price Index (CHOOSE ONE: rose, fell) In March, month In which It usually slightly. 2 Canadians boycotted to protest high prices. a-Iumber b-meat c-gasolloe 3 Development of square miles of land was temporarily frozen by ine.. Supreme Court at the request of Indians who protested that their land rights may be tlolated. a-New Brunswick b- Ontario c-Northweat Territories 4 Communist guerrilla forces have been inter- rupting traffic around the capital of Cambodia, causing problems for the government of Presi- dent 6 It was reported that Toronto may be the first North American city to be host to a rich, rare collection of arcbeological treasures from that will be sent first on tour in West Europe. a-Egypt b-Chlna c-Peru PART II WORDS IN THE NEWS Take 4 points for each word that you can match with correct meaning. a-sacrificed la Paesover b-Eaater for children c-hldes Easter Passover fool forbidden for Jewn following dietary laws 1.....lamb 2.....rabbit 3.....unleavened bread 4.....ham PART III NAMES IN THE NEWS Take 6 points for names that yon can correctly match with the does. 1__.Phnom Penh a-capltal of Australia 2.....Watergate S.....Canberra 4... b-African wildlife area of Cambodii d-Hlmalyaa kingdom e-name of a hotel and a scandal FAMILY DISCUSSION QUESTION Would you HJcs to see the National Hockey League and the World Hockey Association merge? Why or why not? 416-73 STUDENTS Veto We Reference for Ewmfc ANSWERS ON REVERSE FACE ;