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  • Crusade

    Posted by Sgt. Mom on November 5th, 2019 (All posts by )

    A bit of a loaded word, isn’t it? But a label that American anti-slavery activists would have felt entirely comfortable with, in the first half of the 19th century. Such was the knowledge that taking up the cross of a cause could be hazardous, indeed – but the fight was for the right, and the eventual prize was worth it and more; the promise that every man (and by implication, every woman as well) had a right to be free. Not a slave, as comfortable as that situation might be to individuals – but to be free, answering only to ones’ conscience, as was expressed in the Declaration of Independence. “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness…” Life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, never mind that one might have varying degrees of success in that pursuit – one had the right to decide how to go about it, in whatever method and manner than one chose. One had the right to not be property, as if an ox or a horse.

    The abolitionists logically took that understanding to apply to all, without regard to color or national origin; the more radical also took it to apply to women. This was a breathtaking insight, in its’ own way. It should be noted that the founders of the great American political experiment had serious qualms regarding the question of slavery, despite what the New York Times insists through their 1619 Project. New Englanders like John Addams certainly took the promise of the Declaration seriously. Those Founding Fathers who were slaveholders, were themselves pretty conflicted, if one reads contemporary accounts aright. They acknowledged the contradiction, making various accommodations as circumstances dictated. Cash poor, property-rich and for many, there was an element of personal responsibility: to see to the long-term welfare of those they owned, those slaves who were too aged, to young, or otherwise unfit for work. Patronizing and perhaps laden with a bit of self-interest there – but an honest feeling of obligation, and a hope that the institution of chattel slavery would die a natural death. At the time of the Revolution, (the late 18th century) it appeared to most thinking citizens of the 13 Colonies that slavery was morally wrong, economically unsustainable and headed for the dustbin of history. As this recent article in the City Journal has it:

    “… the equality principle of the Revolution began to make many Americans antislavery. The most ardently revolutionary region of the country, New England, also led the first abolition movement. Prior to the revolutionary period, few significant public discussions of slavery’s injustice took place. But following the Revolution’s equality principle, eight states—either through their legislatures or their courts—began abolishing slavery after the publication of the Declaration. Vermont did so in 1777, Pennsylvania in 1780, Massachusetts and New Hampshire in 1783, Connecticut and Rhode Island in 1784, New York in 1799, and New Jersey in 1804.
    Ample evidence shows that the Founders wished for an end to slavery…”

    Eli Whitney’s invention of the cotton gin – a device to mechanically separate the useful cotton fibers from seeds, a process which formerly had to be done slowly, tediously and uneconomically by hand – had the result of reviving the US slave trade just when chattel slavery appeared to be breathing it’s last. A mechanical cotton gin made cultivating and harvesting cotton enormously profitable, breathing new life into what came to be called ‘the peculiar institution.’ Cotton became king, supplying the mills of Manchester, England, and Lowell, Massachusetts; and slavery became essential to the South, or at least, the leaders and shakers believed it did.

    And just as firmly, those who were opposed to the existence of chattel slavery anywhere in the United States came out, ever more vociferously against the practice. Almost from the very start of the American experiment, an impressive array of intellectuals, academics, politicians, social activists, free Negroes and the religiously-devout spoke out in public against slavery, and in the pages of newspapers, tracts and popular novels, in a chorus which became louder and more defiant as the decades passed. Intellectual opposition let to passive resistance, then armed resistance … and finally open and bloody war. The history of the Abolition movement is out there for anyone to read and research, even though most of those once-prominent voices are fairly obscure now. (I’m doing some heavy research into the abolition movement in the 1840s and 1850s, as part of the next book, which is why I’m particularly outraged by the 1619 Project.) It is beyond obscene for the Times’ 1619 Project to try and reframe this republic as a body established for the sole purpose of nurturing slavery. In perpetuating outright progressive propaganda, the Grey Lady has become the Old Grey Whore of newspapers. Discuss as you wish.

     

    27 Responses to “Crusade”

    1. Brian Says:

      Frederick Douglass:
      “It may be said that it is quite true that the Constitution was designed to secure the blessings of liberty and justice to the people who made it, and to the posterity of the people who made it, but was never designed to do any such thing for the colored people of African descent.
      This is Judge Taney’s argument, and it is Mr. Garrison’s argument, but it is not the argument of the Constitution. The Constitution imposes no such mean and satanic limitations upon its own beneficent operation. And, if the Constitution makes none, I beg to know what right has anybody, outside of the Constitution, for the special accommodation of slaveholding villainy, to impose such a construction upon the Constitution?
      The Constitution knows all the human inhabitants of this country as “the people.” It makes, as I have said before, no discrimination in favor of, or against, any class of the people, but is fitted to protect and preserve the rights of all, without reference to color, size, or any physical peculiarities. Besides, it has been shown by William Goodell and others, that in eleven out of the old thirteen States, colored men were legal voters at the time of the adoption of the Constitution.”

      The New York times can rot in hell.

      Abolitionists were quite worried that the Supreme Court was going to make a Dred Scott II ruling that would legalize slavery throughout the North, destroying the containment strategy that said it could be constrained to the South, prevented from spreading to the territories, and it would then die out. Kind of similar to the way Democrats today use the courts to impose their desires on the entire nation.

      We have to hope Bismark was right about America, but it doesn’t look good at the moment…

    2. Sgt. Mom Says:

      It is my hope also … that Bismark was right, and the Old Grey Whore will rot in hell.
      The fight against slavery from the very beginning of the US was impassioned and significant – and for the Old Grey Whore’s little pets to try and disappear all that passionate history … is obscene. No other word for it, than obscene.

    3. pst314 Says:

      Crusade in Europe, Dwight D. Eisenhower’s WWII memoir.

    4. Mike K Says:

      Two things: One the Northwest Ordinance , dated 1787, banned slavery in the Northwest Territory, which was north of the Ohio River. I have seen leftists deny this and assert that slavery was the law throughout the US.

      The South was another matter. I have also read a book about Dredd Scott that asserts he and his wife has incompetent lawyers and they should have been free because they were taken to a free state.

    5. Assistant Village Idiot Says:

      It is not what is true, but what can be made to look as if it is true. It may have always been that way with journalists and politicians – the early presidential elections were worse than our current ones, for example. Yet it does at least seem that in our day the newspapermen are not even trying to seek out the truth, but to convince us of a point of view regardless of its truth, ignoring any contrary evidence. There is nothing shameful about advertising a laundry soap or a bottle of beer, but everyone is clear that only one side of the story will be told. It is not the same in reporting.

      I agree with the modern academics and historians that truth is elusive, and is highly dependent on the assumptions one starts with. However, falsehood is sometimes quite clear, and should be recognised and discarded. The intelligentsia no longer performs this service, if indeed it ever did.

    6. Gavin Longmuir Says:

      Our expectations for the NYT are understandably (and justifiably) very low these days — but it would be nice if the denizens of NYT at least understood arithmetic.

      The English brought slaves to North America in 1619. Hardly surprising, since the English were one of the main European participants in colonizing the New World and in the trans-Atlantic slave trade. (Most of us have heard of the famous South Sea Bubble of the early 18th Century, in which even Sir Isaac Newton lost a fortune. But the English have rather hushed up the underlying business of the South Sea Company — a business which was believed to be so profitable that investors went wild. That business was selling African slaves to Spanish colonies in South America).

      The United States did not come into existence in a practical sense until the Treaty of Paris ended the War of Independence in 1784. That makes the English responsible for slavery in North America for about 165 years.

      From 1784 to the Emancipation Proclamation of 1863, issued during the only major civil war fought in large part to end slavery, was about 79 years.

      Arithmetic suggests that responsibility for about 2/3 of the period in which slavery was practiced in North America has to be assigned solely to the English, who promoted it and profited from it. Yet the NYT is not demanding that Queen Elizabeth II apologizes and makes restitution.

      Without taking anything away from the many people who worked hard to end slavery in the New World — in the Southern States, in the English sugar plantations of the Caribbean, in Brazil — it is fairly clear that technology played a major role in the ending of slavery. The development of fossil fuel-powered steam engines in the late 18th Century changed the global economy and, over time, made slave labor uneconomic. But we can’t expect the NYT to acknowledge that fossil fuels played a part in ending slavery.

    7. ErisGuy Says:

      Arithmetic suggests that responsibility for about 2/3 of the period in which slavery was practiced in North America has to be assigned solely to the English

      England,too, was one of a handful of EUropean countries not to re-institute slavery in the 20th century.

    8. Christopher B Says:

      I’ll just echo what AVI said, that the root cause is not reporting being done from any particular point of view but that people with obvious bias keep pretending they are just being objective and reporting the ‘facts’.

    9. ray ward Says:

      “the promise that every man (and by implication, every woman as well)”

      Actually, the term is by definition, in this sense of the term, man. So the parenthetical is unneeded.

    10. Brian Says:

      “that the root cause is not reporting being done from any particular point of view but that people with obvious bias keep pretending they are just being objective and reporting the ‘facts’.”
      The root cause is that we let these people do that. It’s a farce that could easily be ended.

    11. Gringo Says:

      Gavin Longmuir

      The development of fossil fuel-powered steam engines in the late 18th Century changed the global economy and, over time, made slave labor uneconomic. But we can’t expect the NYT to acknowledge that fossil fuels played a part in ending slavery.

      The key words are “over time.” In 1945, nearly all of cotton in the US was harvested by hand. It wasn’t until the 1950s that mechanical cotton harvesters took over.

    12. David Foster Says:

      Gringo & Gavin…

      “In 1945, nearly all of cotton in the US was harvested by hand. It wasn’t until the 1950s that mechanical cotton harvesters took over.”

      But in a macro sense, steam power (and waterpower) increased the % of the population whose efforts were being aided by machinery. The purely manual tasks such as cotton picking were gradually reduced to a niche, albeit a fairly large one.

      Also, the structure of the slave-based economy also discouraged investment in labor-saving methods that *didn’t* require mechanical power. Frederick Douglass, himself a former slave, visited a shipyard in New Bedford shortly after obtaining his freedom. Here are his comments on observing a cargo being unloaded:

      “In a southern port, twenty or thirty hands would have been employed to do what five or six did here, with the aid of a single ox attached to the end of a fall. Main strength, unassisted by skill, is slavery’s method of labor. An old ox, worth eighty dollars, was doing, in New Bedford, what would have required fifteen thousand dollars worth of human bones and muscles to have performed in a southern port.”

      Of Energy and Slavery:

      https://chicagoboyz.net/archives/42837.html

    13. Gavin Longmuir Says:

      Gringo: “In 1945, nearly all of cotton in the US was harvested by hand.”

      In 1945, there were no slaves doing that hand-harvesting. We have to ask ourselves how the cotton industry survived without slaves?

      The South, with its residual of English slavery and its strong market in England for slave-produced cotton, went into the mid-19th Century Civil War believing that King Cotton gave them a huge advantage. They thought Europeans would have to support the Confederacy to ensure a continuing supply of cotton. Instead, Europeans promoted cotton-growing in Egypt, creating an alternative supply. Did the Egyptians need slaves to produce cotton?

      Economies are complex beasts. Remember that the slave-worker had to generate enough production to at least cover the costs of feeding, clothing, and sheltering himself. When the slave-worker became a wage-worker, those costs simply became explicit (through the intermediary of money) rather than implicit. Wage-workers (operating cost) using steam-powered equipment were much more productive than slaves (capital cost) working by hand. The benefits of that extra fossil-fuel powered productivity in some sectors of the economy tended to get spread throughout the economy due to competition for workers — which ultimately raised the living standards of all workers, including those doing things that still needed to be done by hand.

    14. Mike K Says:

      Gringo: “In 1945, nearly all of cotton in the US was harvested by hand.”

      The boll weevil had an impressive effect on cotton.

      Boll weevils entered the United States from Mexico in the late 1800s, when they were first spotted in Texas. By the 1920s they had spread through all of the major cotton-producing areas in the country. The scope of the damage was breathtaking, as were the control efforts thrown at this insect. At one time, one-third of the insecticide used in the United States was used to combat boll weevils.

      In 1903, the chief of the U.S. Department of Agriculture testified before Congress that the insect’s outbreaks were a “wave of evil,” and that afflicted areas in Mexico had abandoned cotton production altogether. Indeed, many scholars agree that the impact was so great on the rural South’s cotton-dependent economy that it was one of the causes of the “Great Migration,” when African Americans moved en masse to the northern United States during the early 1900s.

    15. Grurray Says:

      Regarding Gavin’s point about the English responsibility, see A Summary View of the Rights of British America written by Thomas Jefferson in 1774

      For the most trifling reasons, and sometimes for no conceivable reason at all, his majesty has rejected laws of the most salutary tendency. The abolition of domestic slavery is the great object of desire in those colonies, where it was unhappily introduced in their infant state. But previous to the enfranchisement of the slaves we have, it is necessary to exclude all further importations from Africa; yet our repeated attempts to effect this by prohibitions, and by imposing duties which might amount to a prohibition, have been hitherto defeated by his majesty’s negative: Thus preferring the immediate advantages of a few African corsairs to the lasting interests of the American states, and to the rights of human nature, deeply wounded by this infamous practice. Nay, the single interposition of an interested individual against a law was scarcely ever known to fail of success, though in the opposite scale were placed the interests of a whole country.

      Virginia tried to ban the slave trade before the war started, but the Crown would not allow it. According to Jefferson here, outright abolition was indeed one of the prime considerations, and there was really no way it could not have been because of the high stakes involved.

      In 1773, the British courts ruled that slavery was incompatible with common laws, and they freed a slave held by an American merchant. Despite the propaganda peddled about it today, this ruling combined with the mandated importation of slaves was a deliberate Crown strategy to deploy a hostile force to counterattack rebellious colonists. When it proved insufficient, the British ended up importing thousands of Hessian mercenaries instead.

      The writing was clearly on the wall that the institution of slavery itself was an existential risk because of the obvious destabilizing potential. Everyone knew the moral contradictions, but they were also afraid, rightly so it turned out, of the consequences of it unraveling.

      In 1777, with the war underway Virginia banned the importation of slaves, thanks to Jefferson. In 1785, he wrote Notes on the State of Virginia where he proposed emancipation and his hope that the people were ready to accept it

      I reflect that God is just: that his justice cannot sleep for ever: that considering numbers, nature and natural means only, a revolution of the wheel of fortune, an exchange of situation, is among possible events… I think a change already perceptible, since the origin of the present revolution. The spirit of the master is abating, that of the slave rising from the dust, his condition mollifying, the way I hope preparing, under the auspices of heaven, for a total emancipation, and that this is disposed, in the order of events, to be with the consent of the masters, rather than by their extirpation.

      Unfortunately for the nation, extirpation by war was the way it happened.

    16. pouncer Says:

      Another contextual issue deliberately unaddressed by the NYT is the oppressive and restrictive nature of labor contracts chronologically parallel to race-slavery.

      Labor-apprenticeships (like that of Ben Franklin’s) were common. A child could be bought and sold (or at least bound by long-term-lease) to be treated as property. Training methods were severe and painful. Franklin got free by running way. But he surely had direct lived experience of being “owned” that shaped his attitudes towards race-slavery.

      Transport indebitures were common. Again, for years the laborer owed his “employers” the cost of ocean passage — and the employer barely owed the laborer a meal or rags for clothing or a plank for a partial roof. Whips and cages and starvation and threats of being sold away were motivators imposed by landowners upon (mostly “white”) laborers in a 17th century fashion that would be hard to distinguish from 19th century race slavery.

      Criminal convict/prisoners, often transported from the UK but also those successfully convicted in the colonies, were commonly bought and sold for labor. And were whipped, caged, etc — consistent with labor management practices of the era.

      Naval laborers (“able seaman”) were captured or impressed from the docks and other ships, captured,
      bought, sold, and traded from one nation’s ships to another’s with little more regard than a land army’s cavalry’s capture of horse’s. The Nelson and Hornblower era had ensigns and disciplined crews go ashore to, essentially, kidnap skilled laborers like carpenters, barrel-makers, and smiths in order to fill the ranks of their ships. A root cause of the War of 1812 was British crewmen jumping ship from UK warships to US commercial shipping, and the UK wanting that “property” back. (Not to mention the UK ship’s officers simply TAKING US-citizen crewman from US ships on the claim that they were, colorably, UK deserters– and if not, well, the US citizens made up for the loss of UK subjects.)

      The dawn of the Industrial era saw British landowners essentially buy life-ownership of (other British, “white”) mine-workers. Workers again often literally bound to their tasks. Nor was this only an issue among English industrialists, nor only mine workers. Our popular culture caricature from the musical “Les Miserables” — Look Down, you’re here until you die — reminds us how factory work could be, in a one-industry town (where the owner is also the mayor…)

      Marx very-belatedly moaning about the hardships of labor wasn’t so awfully wrong about the callous hearts of “owners”. Whips and starvation and exploitive overseers…

      The idea of running away to the Western frontier — from the UK to the US, from Boston to Philadelphia, from the Eastern states to the wild west frontier
      — accomplished more to raise the value of common laborers than any other philosophical idea.

      What changed from 1619 to 1850 or so was the idea that “slave” was an in-born, inherent, condition. When a slave was, like a hostage or a convict or a soldier, a person bound by conditions imposed from the outside, it was possible to discuss releasing or emancipating or freeing such a person. When later a slave was, like a horse or an ox or a robot, a thing created for a task — property and nothing else. Ben Franklin and Jean Valjean could run away. A black unskilled worker running from and into a white bourgeois community, had no comparable protections of anonymity.

    17. Mike K Says:

      A black unskilled worker running from and into a white bourgeois community, had no comparable protections of anonymity.

      Remember there were quite a few black slave owners in the south. Some had been freed by owners and some had freed themselves in the islands. Some were pirates.

    18. Gringo Says:

      Gavin Longmuir
      In 1945, there were no slaves doing that hand-harvesting. We have to ask ourselves how the cotton industry survived without slavess

      My point about mechanization of the cotton harvest and slavery is that there are some who claim had the South been permitted to secede, that slavery would have died out soon afterward. My reply is that the history of cotton’s mechanization says that “soon afterwards” or “over time” would probably have been a century or even more.

      Yes, the history of cotton production post-1865 shows that cotton production went on without slavery. No argument from me.

    19. Gavin Longmuir Says:

      Gringo: “My reply is that the history of cotton’s mechanization says that “soon afterwards” or “over time” would probably have been a century or even more.”

      It is hard to argue that slavery in a hypothetical independent Confederacy would still have existed after World War II. After all, something like 90% of the Africans enslaved by their African brethren and then shipped across the Atlantic by European slavers went to the Caribbean and South America, where Europeans employed them in sugar plantations and the like. But slavery came to an end in those places in the late 1800s — and without the intervention of a Civil War.

      Slavery has existed since the dawn of history. Almost every ethnic group at some point in history has been enslaved, and at other points has been slave owners. Then a practice as old as civilization died away shortly after the development of the steam engine. Coincidence?

    20. OBloodyHell Says:

      for the Old Grey Whore’s little pets to try and disappear all that passionate history … is obscene. No other word for it, than obscene.

      I say it again: PostModern Liberalism is a social cancer. Literal, not Figurative.

      Until we grasp this, and make others grasp it, we are all doomed.

    21. MCS Says:

      One of the peculiarities of cotton farming is that before the invention of something called a cotton module in the ’80’s, cotton couldn’t be harvested any faster than it could be ginned. There was no way to store the raw cotton. Only about 25% of the raw cotton is usable lint, the rest is seed and trash and it is very bulky. The problem is that the lint deteriorates from exposure to the weather so the season is limited as well. This made the economics of mechanical harvesting less obvious than grain harvesters. It took a combination of developing varieties that were harvestable mechanically and the actual development of a workable harvester (actually two for the two main types).

      There was also a lot of hand type work involved in cultivation, especially hoeing weeds.

      And finally, the legacy of Jim Crow and share cropping meant that the actual farmers didn’t have money to invest in machinery. The gins were another way of controlling the share croppers and keeping them in debt peonage. I would bet that most of the cotton ground was plowed with single bottom, horse drawn plows and cultivated with a combination of hand and single horse drawn harrows. This at a time when these implements had long passed out of use in the rest of the country. Most of the advances in cotton cultivation happened after cotton had escaped the South and moved to California.

      I’ve made the point elsewhere that entire chronology of slavery/Jim Crow cause real and lasting economic harm to the South over and above the moral harm that has only lately started to dissipate.

    22. Gringo Says:

      Gavin Longmuir

      November 5th, 2019 at 10:41 pm

      Without taking anything away from the many people who worked hard to end slavery in the New World — in the Southern States, in the English sugar plantations of the Caribbean, in Brazil — it is fairly clear that technology played a major role in the ending of slavery. The development of fossil fuel-powered steam engines in the late 18th Century changed the global economy and, over time, made slave labor uneconomic. But we can’t expect the NYT to acknowledge that fossil fuels played a part in ending slavery.

      You inform us that technology- the steam engine- had a role in the ending of slavery, yet deny any hypothetical possibility of the mechanization of cotton harvesting doing the same had the South won the Civil War and for then kept slavery in place.

    23. CapitalistRoader Says:

      Liverpool: European Capital of… the Transatlantic Slave Trade

      First, some background on Liverpool and the transatlantic slave trade. Between about 1500 and 1870, millions of Africans were captured, enslaved and transported across the Atlantic Ocean by Europeans. The motivation for this traffic was that the European powers needed labour to work in their American colonies. It was in the middle of the 17th century that the English became regular participants in the trade in African people. By the end of the century the English were the largest traffickers in slaves in the western world, shipping on average some 6-8,000 enslaved Africans a year to the Americas. This figure grew to 30-45,000 a year after 1750…

      During forty years of work and travel in Europe and America, it became increasingly clear to me that slavery was a taboo subject, both to white and black people. Forty years ago, most Europeans had managed to suppress any acknowledgement of their connection with the slave trade. It was something in the past. In the Unites States, where it was impossible to ignore the results of the slave trade, there was segregation, later bussing and recently something like integration, but never any mention of how black people came to be in America in the first place. We can come to terms with our past only by accepting it, and in order to be able to accept it we need knowledge of what actually happened. We need to make sense of our history. It seemed to me that the taboo should be exorcised.</blockquote

    24. Joe Wooten Says:

      Most of the advances in cotton cultivation happened after cotton had escaped the South and moved to California.

      The mechanization was also driven by the West Texas cotton farmers before and after WW2. Hand harvesting usually was done behind the stripper/harvester to get the bolls the early machines left behind. I remember dragging the sack behind me as I picked missed bolls helping both grandfathers during September/October. By the late 1960’s the machinery was good enough this was no longer necessary. The bolls left were not enough to be worth the effort of manual picking.

    25. Gavin Longmuir Says:

      Gringo: “You inform us that technology- the steam engine- had a role in the ending of slavery, yet deny any hypothetical possibility of the mechanization of cotton harvesting doing the same had the South won the Civil War and for then kept slavery in place.”

      Gringo, my apologies if I have not been clear. Unless I misunderstand you, you seem to be saying that fossil fuel-powered technology would have ended slavery in an independent Confederacy. I agree!

      First, we have to note that slavery in the former English colonies of North America was only a small part of African slavery in the New World. European colonists in the Caribbean & South America bought much larger numbers of African slaves. And slavery came to an end in those countries in the late 19th Century, only a few decades after the US Civil War. For example, Brazil — which had imported roughly 10 times the number of slaves as the South — abolished slavery in 1888.

      Second, think of the economics. A slave was a capital asset. A mechanical cotton harvester is a capital asset. Once technology had advanced to the point of being able to build a fossil fuel-powered mechanical cotton harvester, it made a lot more economic sense for a plantation owner to put his limited capital into machinery than into much less efficient slaves. A hypothetical independent Confederacy would have given up slavery in much the same time frame as, say, Brazil — and for the same reasons.

      My point is that the ancient human practice of enslaving our fellow men did not come to an end because our 19th Century ancestors suddenly became more moral people. No, slavery came to an end because slave labor could not compete with technology powered by fossil fuels — coal, and later oil. The corollary is that, if the Usual Suspects succeed in abandoning fossil fuels before a nuclear economy has been created, then slavery will inevitably reappear. Of course, the Usual Suspects expect that they will be the slave masters, not the slaves.

    26. Sgt. Mom Says:

      Oddly enough, this very week, we had a conversation with a neighbor, who is part owner-investor in his family farm, about the cotton harvest this year. (Neighbor invests in the farm for a profit share while his brother manages it day to day.) The cotton crop was bounteous this year, apparently – a yield per acre of twice what it was when the neighbors’ father and grandfather worked the very same acreage. Neighbor says that mechanization of planting and harvesting as made all the difference, plus development of prime seed. The cotton seed his family farm uses cost $400 a bag – but the yield when strategically planted made it worth the expense.

    27. MCS Says:

      Anybody that thinks there is no legal gambling in Texas isn’t a farmer. It’s the best way, outside of government, to turn a big pile of money into a mountain of debt.

      The good years seem to happen just often enough to encourage the addicts.

      I’ll keep a good thought for your neighbor and all the other farmers I’ve known.

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