|<grain prices have been in a downtrend for several years>|
I agree, the prices were trending down, but when the tariffs started being slung to and from China, prices (according to my lifelong GOP Cousin), began collapsing much farther and faster by a large factor -- hence, 2 bailouts for farmers already that total $28 million. My cousin says it doesn't even come close to helping him and will have to find ways to cut back -- not good for the tiny community he lives near, banks with, gets supplies, etc.
My cousin and his neighboring farmers were all making homemade bacon and various sausages when I drove through there on my way to spend time with my mom on her 92nd birthday (and who grew up on a farm). They do this every year, but this year a 2nd go 'round since they'd already lost 4 fields to flooding and assuming they dry out in time, will have to be replanted -- if it pencils out financially.
So for an entire day, I drank beer and acted as Quality Control by sampling batches of bacon and the different sausages (this year included Wild Boar meat and Alligator -- my brother doesn't live too far away from my cousin and they'd gone to the mid-south and south to hunt "wild" meat). Every farmer there agreed the only ones who will make out well with the bailouts are the agri-biz outfits and very large operations. Family farmers like the ones I hang with won't get much at all.
For Christmas, I'm going to buy my cousin an auto defibrillator for the "bar" he built in the corner of one of his bldgs/barns, complete with a bar top made of bowling alley wood -- my uncle, his dad, owned the town bowling alley and restaurant, as well as many neon signs he'd snagged from his dad's storage when he died.
I felt like Homer Simpson: mmmmmmmmmm, beer, fresh bacon and sausage all day... if I ever spent more than one day a year there, I'd start looking like Homer, too... <ggg> I never tell my wife about all that beer and bacon, etc. -- just that I spend those days hanging with my cousin, brother and my best friend/best man who now owns the farm my grandmother owned and where my mom grew up and I spent the first 9 years of my life.