Friday, February 08, 2013

God, Farmers, The Bible and Conservatism

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Most everyone in the world has likely seen the Super Bowl Dodge Ram commercial "God Made A Farmer" narrated by the late Paul Harvey.

In you have not seen it or would simply like to see it one more time, click here or watch below. I love this commercial.

A recent survey by the Barna Group has found which American cities are most "Bible minded."

Another recent Gallup survey has identified the most conservative states in America.

Their findings are interesting.

The Barna Group found that Knoxville, Tenn. is the most biblically minded city in the country.

Providence, RI is the least. Clearly those who founded and named the city were more biblically minded.

Among "Bible minded" cities, Shreveport, LA. was second, Chattanooga, Tenn., was third., followed by Springfield, Mo., Charlotte, NC., Lynchburg, VA., Huntsville-Decator, AL. and Charleston, WV.

The least biblically minded?

Following Providence, the least of all cities, was Albany, NY., Burlington, VT., Portland, MA., Hartford, Conn., and Boston, MA.

Seattle-Tacoma ranked 69, with Providence being 96. Portland, OR., was 65. Spokane was 61, all near the bottom, but perhaps better than one might imagine given recent events.

A separate survey by Gallup has found that Alabama is the most conservative state, with Washington DC the most liberal.

Washington DC is followed by Massachusetts, 2; Oregon, 3; Vermont, 4; with Washington, Delaware and Connecticut tied for 5 as the most liberal states in the country.

In reviewing these surveys you will discover some very interesting findings.

One example: The state of Utah is ranked the 5th most conservative, but Salt Lake City is near the bottom (84) of the most "Bible minded" cities.

Have a great weekend.

Be Informed. Be Prayerful. Be Blessed.


  1. These farmers will not be able able to leave their farms to their sons anymore either. The death tax will eat the farm, they are considered as "rich" because of their land, when in fact, they barely make it by.
    May God save the farmer and the other innovators and hard workers that have built the backbone of this great nation.

    1. Really? How big are these family farms? A farmer can pass on $5 million worth of the farm to each child estate tax free? $10 million to each heir if they are married?

      Then any estate tax is only charged on the portion above the $10 million. And there are ways to make payments on that taxable portion for years.

      I think your farmer friends that can't afford to pass on their family farms might just need better accountants.

    2. @ 1020 Actually you may have been right say 35 years ago with your numbers , but considering how much land is worth ,and the amount money tied up in machinery , buildings that house equipment , etc 5 million goes very quickly .

      Farmer friends are becoming corporations . The small farmer , especially the small black farmer is becoming a history lesson in this county , and the way we teach about history in schools these days I doubt they will get mention even in February .

      Your speaking idealogy . I can be worth 35 million , but if i pay tax on my thirty million of assets and bank deposits before I make a dime the amount of money that was going to be spent on the business will be less.

      Many farmers when they inherit small farms see it is much safer and better for their familes to sell out . Why take a risk at farming " you do know its a risk" pay more taxes your first year then your dad was , and the only support you get is from liberals telling them to just get better accountants to get by the tax code .

      How about tax code , reward people who work hard . Besides I rather have the money going into the private sector where it can produce more then just food .

      Perhaps that is what you really mean , you just want more people paying higher taxes , and choose to vilify farmers to make you fell better . Hope you like corporations running the food industry .


    3. from the USDA:

      "Based on simulations using farm-level survey data from ERS' 2009 Agricultural Resource Management Survey (ARMS), about 1.2 percent of the 41,688 individual farm estates projected for 2011 are estimated to have assets in excess of $5 million and would be required to file an estate tax return."

      So, only .012 of individual farms would be subject to the estate tax.

      Plus, according to an Iowa State University study, the average return on investment over the period from 1970 to 2009 was 7.0 percent. So, your little $35 million dollar family farm would return about $2.5 million in profit. Meanwhile, a family farm worth an un-taxable $2 million would produce almost $150k a year - and that sounds like a family farm to me

      I think the corporate farms are the face of evil, and yes I want family farms. But I don't think an estate tax that might affect 1.2% of them is a factor.


    4. Thanks for your reply , some good points . But I disagree still . But your right for pointing out that the amount of farms being effected are much smaller then I thought also . The Estate Tax jut seems unfair to me basically . Also in comparison to corporations small farms that go over 5 million still are considered small .

      Corporate Farms now only account for 5 percent of all farms , but make up 73 percent of farms gross revenue.
      I do not see corporate farms as evil , but I do support family owned farms . We can not share links here but I am reading a CBS report about a democrat Senator Max Baucus from Montana attempting to keep an exception for Farms from Bush’s tax policy at 35 percent.
      More then 30 California Agriculture groups have appealed to Congress, Farm Bureaus the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association, the Idaho Dairymen’s Association, and the Western Growers Association. But thanks for pointing out that many farms do register under the lower figure. From my perspective your limiting an incentive to make the farm better and not just farms hurting the economy because of those who inherit a farm or business who just decide to take the money and run because of tax burden.

      The CBO reported this will cause unemployment to actually increase because of so many jobs that will be effected , not just from farms but from family owned businesses also .

      Also what you are not taking into account is that when a death occurs, unless you are a corporation , the taxes are due on a asset rich and cash strapped farm . During bad economies this is worse. Unless the person has an incredible amount of cash available , there is a a high incentive to sell the farm . Especially during bad economic times such as we are in , when profits are low .

      “America’s family businesses and family farms and family ranches produce 63 percent of all of the jobs in America,”

    5. " the taxes are due on a asset rich and cash strapped farm"

      No, the payments can be spread over 15 years at low interests. No forced liquidations.

      I don't think it's an issue. You've pointed out many organizations have lobbied against the estate tax but I'll believe it's an issue when it actually becomes one, so some numbers or even real life examples of farms that were sold because of estate taxes would be appropriate here. You might find one or two, but out of the thousands of family farms, that wouldn't be meaningful.

    6. Thanks for your comments . Good conversation . You did good . ;0)

  2. Thanks Gary. This is very interesting. Informative.

  3. I'd like to know by what criteria they consider Salt Lake City un-Bible-minded. My suspicion is the questions were phrased in a way that would skew them away from Mormons.

    1. SLC is an island within Utah. It's majority Democratic party and they consistently elect Democratic representatives. SLC mayor Rocky Anderson supported gay marriage. Current mayor is Democrat Ralph Becker. From his website "He has also significantly expanded protections for the City’s LGBT individuals through the Mutual Commitment Registry and Non-Discrimination ordinances." It's pretty cool and pretty amazing.

    2. They asked if you believe the Bible is accurate which mormons don't.

  4. Thanks Gary for continuing to keep us informed. These kinds of things are very important to me and my family, but I would not be aware of much of it if it weren't for your daily blog. Looking forward to hearing you on the radio every day.

  5. I've saved the Paul Harvey ad. Will listen often. Thanks.


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