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Release No. 0301.05 Contact: USDA Press Office (202) 720-4623 - page 39 / 53

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that are large enough to capture economies of scale.  So I would like to ask you, how are you going to help young farmers access capital to invest in their operations or give them a chance to have competitive bids on land?  Thank you.

     MODERATOR:  Thank you very much.

     (Applause.)

     MODERATOR:  Let’s go to the next question, please.

    MR.  STEVEN HOLMQUIST:  (sp) My name is Steven Holmquist.  I am a last generation farmer.  My son, I got him started in construction because there’s no future in farming.  I can’t see one.  I have no idea what the USDA is talking about when they talk about a Farm Bill because we don’t have one and I don't know when we ever had one.  When everything is a welfare program to keep the farmers going, that’s what I feel like, a welfare recipient.

    Agri-business runs USDA.  They make the laws, they buy your votes.  It’s for sale every day of the year.  I challenge you to put two decent farmers on your farm committee to write you a Farm Bill.  Forget about the rest of them.  That’s my comment.

    MODERATOR:  Thank you.

   (Applause.)

    MODERATOR:  Next question please.

     MR.  DOUG WOLF:  (sp) I’m Doug Wolf from Stevens County.  I farm corn, beans and wheat.  I also farm with my son who is 20 years old and I’ve got a son-in-law that’s farming that’s 21 years old.  These young men are enthused about farming.  They want to be low cost producers.  

     I didn't come here to speak.  I wasn’t going to say anything, but as I hear, everybody wants money for their program.  What I want is less regulation so these young farmers can be low cost producers.

      The present farm program has been a pretty good program, but the direct payments that we get from the Farm Program has gone right in to land rents and land value.  It’s not helping these two young farmers that are farming with me.  What they need is protection and less regulation.

     I see, Mr. Secretary, you’ve got a shirt on that says, NRCS.  Well, in our country right now NRCS is a very naughty word.  Now, I’m not picking on you, but that’s just the way it is.  The reason that is, is because of the regulations.  We’re trying to produce at low cost and one of the tools that we are trying to use is drainage and we are getting regulated in our county way different than what other counties are and it seems very unfair.  The

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