• John Vogel

    Take Time For Amens and Amends

    Nor' east Thinkin'

     by John Vogel
     on December 27, 2010

     As I write this, we're still being barraged by year-end advertisements aimed at parting us with hard-earned dollars. No, I'm not a "Scrooge". I just can't wait until we get a well-deserved break from it. The advertising world seems to think a lot of us can wrap up a new Jaguar for our special loved ones. Imagine that! I can't. Where I come from, a new tractor would generate far more excitement. Depending on the model, it might not cost quite as much. And you'd get far more work from…

    Continue Reading


  • John Vogel

    The Christmas gift?

    Nor' east Thinkin'

     by John Vogel
     on December 22, 2010

    Won't be long until Christmas, now. So the other day, I asked my sweetie what she wanted as a gift. "Nothin'," she replied in a slightly annoyed tone. "We've got to get rid of stuff, not add to. And nobody wants our stuff after we're finished with it," she grumbled. "Okay, so how about a little trip to an exotic place?" I queried. That got her attention. Then her eyebrows knitted into a full facial frown: "Where?" she suspiciously replied. "How about Niagara Falls?" With eyes rolling…

    Continue Reading


  • John Vogel

    Kings Of 'Pork' Buried . . . Again

    Nor' east Thinkin'

     by John Vogel
     on December 17, 2010

     Last night changed this blog headline from "Pork Kings Rise from the grave". While on a conference call with our local congressman, he joyfully reported fresh word that Congressional leaders buried its $1.3-trillion omnibus spending bill. The omnibus bill was the "bus" hauling some 6,488 or more (depending on who was doing the counting) earmarks. Shoveled into the defense spending category pile was two after-life memorial gifts dedicated to the Northeast's two departed kings of "pork…

    Continue Reading


  • John Vogel

    They're Looking Out For No. 1, And Only No. 1

    Nor' east Thinkin'

     by John Vogel
     on December 13, 2010

    The latest strategies by U.S. food industry leaders confirm, in my mind, that they are no friends of agriculture. In fact, the push by large-scale processors and marketers actually meant to bite the hand that feeds them. United Fresh, the nation's largest trade organization for the fruit and vegetable industry, worked hard to bring small-scale fruit and vegetable producers and marketers under the regulatory thumb of the Food and Drug Administration via the proposed Food Safety Modernization…

    Continue Reading


  • John Vogel

    The More Things Change, The More They Don't

    Nor' east Thinkin'

     by John Vogel
     on December 3, 2010

      Last night, a farmer from New York (state) e-mailed me that before the mid-term elections, Senator Charles Schumer called for an investigation into why farmers get such a small share of retail milk prices. And he sent a New York Times clip headlined "Vegetable dealers take 1,400%", while cabbage growers get a penny a head and East Coast vegetable markets were glutted with supply. That clipping was published July 17, 1920. But both the milk and vegetable pricing issues are on-going…

    Continue Reading