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2019 should be the year that you start your food business... Here's how (Mini-AMA all weekend)

So you love to eat. No kidding! You need to eat to live. So does everyone else. Starting a food business is fun, stressful, and it's a blast when someone you have no clue who they are likes what you made.
You have a burning desire to start a hot sauce / juice / beverage / cookie / baked goods / bitcoin gummy bear company. Basically if someone wants to put it in their mouth, you have an idea for it. So let's get to it. Break it down, from start to finish (lol, it's never done).
WARNING: This may seem as some what self-promoting, but the only thing I will say now is that I started a 3PL shipping company specifically for food items. No links to it, but you can check my post history, but I'll save you the time. I used to be a web / app developer, got tired of the grind with trying to get clients to pay, got tired, bought a food truck with ZERO experience (seriously, my first event I bought 300 loaves of bread. Used 4.5. It was pretty comical and family / friends ate sourdough for WEEKS). I brought the food truck up, had the truck, a pop-up restaurant on Las Vegas Blvd., got an offer to sell the physical truck and book of business, took it, and kept the name rights. Now I'm using my skills both in tech and food to streamline and help foodpreneurs. Take this with whatever grain of salt you want.
Also, to state real quick, DO NOT PM ME QUESTIONS... I am here to open things up so everyone can learn, so the next person looking how to start up a hot sauce company gets relevant information and not "Sent you a PM." I'm gonna be around all weekend, and want to help everyone. I'll try and make responses as detailed / personalized as I can. The more info you post, the more I can help.
Part 1: You have an idea - Great - Treat it like a start-up, because it is
Food can be unsexy. Kitchens are hot, you burn yourself, you get covered in grease, you slip on stainless steel floors (true), and every once in a while theres some knife cuts. BUT, when you know that you just bought a $20 case of potatoes (50 lb) and are selling french fries for $6 for like 3oz of potatoes, your fave words become "Would you like fries with that?"
Key 1 - Know your numbers. Go shopping. You already have your idea, so go shopping. Make a test recipe at home, solely for the purpose of cost analysis. Jump on google sheets, and list EVERY ingredient on your list, and then look at other things, which I call hidden costs.
Visible Costs - Recipe ingredients, packaging, labeling Hidden Costs - How long does it take you to cook / bake / make (labor time), how long do you need to cook it (oven wear and tear, gas, electric for mixer, etc)
You can have a ton of hidden costs beyond just the actual ingredients, and these often get overlooked. If you plan on growing the business, get a friend and your phone and take pictures of HOW YOU WANT IT DONE along each step. Create the "brand" manual for your food / baked good / sauce, etc. Is the hot sauce supposed to be chunky? Is it supposed to be smooth? Are the cookies supposed to be a 30% shade of brown for crispness, and how long did you leave it in the oven for? Those should ALL be documented. You have the time now, and you should be doing it.
Key 2 - Find your suppliers, and find about discounts
You know what you need, and retail might not be the cheapest, or it could be. Play the sales. If you are making a cookie that uses bananas, can you take advantage of price matching at Walmart vs a restaurant supply store to get a better deal and cheaper ingredients? As a smaller company / maker, this should be a good idea, as it will help you create your MVP much cheaper.
Part 2: For the love of everything holy use google to find about your licensing requirements. (I won't do this for you as part of the AMA, just an FYI).
Everyone seems to get tied up with "Can I make this soup / cookie / hot sauce." The short answer is yes, you can, and you can test it legally. It'll take a few dollars, but it's worth it because of the access you can get.
  • Start with your local city or county health department. As you can see from my name, I'm in Vegas. Southern Nevada Health District manages all of the food. They will handle the licensing for food establishments and producers. If you need some Google help, search "[my city] health department]" "[my county] health department]" and if that search returns unfruitful, then search for "[my city] cottage food laws" "cottage food laws [my city / my county]" because small producers will 90% of the time be allowed to create small batches of what are considered "non-hazardous foods" in a home kitchen with little to no oversight. WHAT THIS MEANS: You will most likely be able to bake cookies, cupcakes, make a hot sauce, MAYBE a soup, basically anything that is heated / cooked and can be left out and still be fine. There is almost zero chance your sushi delivery service will be allowed. Fun fact, you cannot serve raw bacon, but under some cottage food laws, cooked bacon is fine because it is turned into a "jerky" classification. So you need to read. I'm not a lawyer, I just like paperwork. Don't be an idiot.
  • Licensing of some sort will be a key part of you starting to get out there. Theres a semi-good chance you can sell on FB, to friends family, at a school bake sale, or even through Etsy / your own online shop without getting any kind of official letter or licensing requirements. SWAT isn't coming because you're selling grandmas cookies on Etsy, so breathe and relax. If you go to a craft show, farmers market, etc, that is when the licensing comes into play, but putting that time and effort / money into it will put you lightyears ahead of everyone else doing it out of their house. Also, fees tend to be pretty low, so you can test your idea from SOMEONE WHO IS EXCHANGING MONEY FOR YOUR GOODS AND DOES NOT CARE ABOUT YOUR FEELINGS. Everyones family / spouse / friends won't really be too keen to tell you "Yo dawg, this is garbage sauce / cupcake / icing / soup" so gathering feedback on what works cheaply before you use student loans on your hot sauce idea is a good thing. Few dollars up front to keep you from doing something dumb.
  • If you are going to go through the trouble of going through licensing to go to a farmers market, etc., then please, child, have a seat and start collecting feedback. Make your product better. It's not hard. "Hey, free half cookie for an email for a survey, and when we launch, we will email you a 30% off coupon." It's not hard, survey money and google forms are free. Mailchimp is free for small accounts. Do the work, otherwise throw your money away at a strip club.
Part 3: Liability and the business
You've now established that grandma wasn't lying to you, and your bacon jerky business is viable, and you're starting to see an increase in orders. Here's what to do next, now that you've "proven the concept" beyond people who will lie to you.
  • Get an LLC / Corp. Use something like Gust Launch, Clerky, or Stripe Atlas. <--- Use google. No links. Time to use your big boy pants. Open a new tab. An LLC / Corp will allow you to set up a business bank account, so when something goes wrong (it will), you can separate your personal life from the business. It's less than $1,000, and worth every penny.
  • Get a business bank account. Credit unions are dope, but big banks work too. Also, cash is fine, but the more credit cards you process, the better. Different schools of thought on this, I just like not having to deal with cash. Some banks charge you a cash handling fee over a certain cash deposit limit (true story). I found a trick to get around this. Go to a check cashing / payday loan place, buy a money order (free usually), then deposit the money order. It's not cash. Just my $.02.
  • BUY BUSINESS INSURANCE.... It's cheap. We paid like $100 a month for $500k in coverage if memory serves me right, and scaled up based on what the client needed through umbrella policies. Our truck insurance for business was like $300 a month on the commercial vehicle. You're dealing with food, and people can get sick. Just do it. When it saves your ass down the road, message me and you can buy me a 2 for $3 Rockstar from 7-11 as a thank you.
  • WTF are you actually selling is a big thing, and regulations will play a pretty big part of this, because it may fall under some OTHER, LARGER authority. There was a post recently for someone who wanted to repackage cheese as part of a cheese of the month box. Bro, FDA and USDA are all over that. There are several agencies I would never want to run afoul of, FBI, IRS, SEC, and FDA. Seriously, you'll get smacked harder than a toddler falling out of a shopping cart if you anger any of those agencies. Use Google. Heres an example. Friend of mine wanted to start a meal prep company, and wanted to do fresh juices. Seems simple because fresh juice places are everywhere right? Not. According to FDA regulations, even for small producers, any part of a "fresh juice" derived from "any part of the fresh vegetable / fruit" was supposed to be handled and cared for according to HCAAP and be pasteurized. Now, fun fact.... Making fresh juice "to order" does not fall under these categories because it would be intended for "immediate consumption." So as long as the meal prep guys made food ahead of time, but only made the juice and bottled it same day, it would fall under these guidelines, and wouldn't be tied to a whole host of regulations and expense. Leave it overnight? Nahh, can't do it. Same day? Totally fine. LEARN TO READ, BECAUSE A SMALL CHANGE COULD SAVE YOU. I've already decided I wouldn't do good in prison, so I don't want to go to jail.
  • You'll need a corporate structure and an EIN most likely for official licenses and for tax reporting. If you're selling online, something like TaxJar is a godsend. You'll need this also if you connect to your POS system to get paid and make that monnnaaayyyyyyy....
  • Something that I've seen brought up here countless times is "well I'm getting busy but my mom / wife / grandma needs to cook in the kitchen," or the good problem to have, "I'm busy with orders because the local news station picked it up and I can't make it fast enough." You're going to want to start investigating what are called "commissary kitchens" or "rentable commercial kitchens" and again, use the googles. [my city / county] commissary kitchens. There are a ton in almost every major city (except Vegas, dunno why). Or search for "kitchens for rent by the hour." You'll get access to larger / better equipment, usually rentable all-in by the hour, so it'll help you plan and budget, because earlier you did all the recipe and timing cards so you know how long it will take (see, I'm not a complete idiot).
Part 4: Launching
HOOOLLLLYYYYYYYYY SHHHHHIIIIIITTTTTTTTTTT..... You're ready to go big time, and are listening to "All I do is win" on repeat on your speakers and standing in your front yard shooting your not-a-flamethrower in the sky. Some things you should start to think about:
  • Branding is big. Have you secured the .com? You need to. There are different schools of thought on if different TLD's are okay. I say no, personally, and I won't pick a name if the .com isn't available. Work on a decent label or branding sticker. Packaging is key as well. For bottles, check out SKS Bottle. For boxes check out U-Line. You might be able to find someone cheaper locally, because shipping is a huge expense of heavy boxes / packaging (supplier to you). Check out StickerMule, Lightning Labels, or google "label suppliers." If you want the non-shiny labels, look for "matte" labels.
  • Social will be major. Not only for being able to launch your own brand, but if you ever decide to go into retail, or distribute. It's common sense in this day and age. I will tell you, that if you have a product that is consumer based, show them how to use it. Hot sauce? Start making recipes and posting them with your hot sauce. Cookies? Show different ways cookies can be given as gifts. Interact with people celebrating things. Pay attention to holidays. Bacon jerky? Go to a NASCAR event, biker rally, take pics, and interact. Give samples away. Go where your target market is.
  • Distribution. Take a listen to "Major Distribution" by 50 Cent. Great hype song. Or Go Getter by Young Jeezy. You're now the Columbians trying to get your hot sauce crack into as many hands as you can. You're selling online, spending hours packaging each bottle with care, printing labels, while you child is crying and your wife is burning rice for the 6th night in a row. Your hands smell like Kraft packaging. Bubble wrap is your defacto blanket....
STOP READING HERE BECAUSE THIS IS SEMI-SELF PROMOTIONAL BECAUSE I AM GIVING TIPS RELATED TO WHAT I DO. LOOK FOR THE NEXT SET OF ALL CAPS TO SKIP THIS ENTIRELY.
A regular distributor will take your product, buy it, and resell it. They may add it to their product catalog, maybe a "hey, Massive Diablo Hot Sauce is a new sauce we are carrying, want to try it?" "Nahhhhh..." "Okay, normal hot sauce it is then." You are the owner of your hot sauce. You're the owner of your packaged cookies. You're the owner of your gluten free, purple yam potato chip. You care the most. You can go the traditional distribution route, and it can happen, but for someone to want to pick you up, you need traction. That's where a food 3PL comes into play (which is a grossly underserved market imho). You pay to rent space in a warehouse, usually by the pallet or half pallet size, pay monthly, and then you pay each order sent out. You need to make sure the numbers work for this.
You're now shipping orders more efficiently, and most likely taking advantage of their shipping discounts because of volume. Straight forward, we plug our own account details into ShipStation for FedEx and get even better rates because of the volume we do. The more you ship, if you have a loading dock, etc. all play into your rates.
Now, you've offloaded the task of shipping to someone else, and are free to focus on sales, growing the business. If you move to a co-packer (more below), your co-packer is sending your stuff to us in bulk, and we are shipping, basically moving you out of the equation almost entirely. You'll need someone who tracks lot numbers, shipment dates, and more in case of a recall, and who got what in an inventory management system (we do, hence the tech background). Temp, shelf life, FIFO, expiration dates, and breakage all are things you need to consider when working with someone.
OKAY YOU CAN KEEP READING NOW THAT YOU'VE SKIPPED THE SELF PROMOTION (KIND OF) PART
  • Co-packers will save your sanity, your relationships, and keep you from smelling like chocolate chips or ghost peppers on date night. Because you've done your starards manual, and updated it based on tweaks, you can start searching for a co-packer. Google the meaning. It's not hard. Don't ask me what a co-packer is. Youre going to want to look at things like capacity, non-disclosure agreements, secrecy, length in business, and packaging capabilities. I know of one place here in Vegas that will do cookies, in different sizes, and will package several different ways. Not everyone will. Look for things like turn around time, lead time, graphics capabilities, and more. I'm sure I'm forgetting something, but if I think of it, see the comments.
Congrats!!!!!!! You've now made the next Tabasco, Auntie Ann's Pretzels, Chips Ahoy, Sriracha, Fresh Squeezed Juice conglomerate. I expect to see all of you on store shelves, and if this helped, send me some food. I'll eat it, or my girlfriend will.
Quesadillas are sandwiches. Fight me. See you in the comments.
submitted by Brianvegas to Entrepreneur [link] [comments]

Transcript of George Webb Video Series Part 302 "Hillary's Leakers, Hackers, and Henchmen" [@Georgwebb / #HRCRatline]

  • Day 163.3. Old Guard vs New Guard at Tewksbury, MA - YouTube
    • Day 163 this is part 3
    • And it's too cold outside, so I have to do this inside
    • Here with Task Force, here with Deep Milwaukee
    • And we're just talking about this Frank enzyme Bradley right now
    • And we're trying to see if that's the same person that was in the global Intelligence files there WikiLeaks in 2012
    • And if people don't remember those leaks, they came out, and there are several embarrassing leaks about numerous companies around the world
    • Now, what I put forward to the group was that these were targets
    • These were Andrew McCabe type targets
    • The way infiltration works is you put your person in--kind of like Amy Dacey at Sony--you put your person in right below them, and then you come out with some thing about Amy Dacey telling--Obama jokes--that are off-color and get her fired
    • And then your person goes up, and then becomes a Sony director
    • That is Andrew McCabe's MO throughout his whole career
    • So that's why I say that's probably what he was doing with the Global Intelligence Files
    • I know it's an FBI operation because it was this guy named Sabu who was the handler, who was running around recruiting people to to hack the Global Intelligence files at Stratfor
    • Now, that's the deniability: they're not really hacking, but they say if they get caught oh it's that 20 year old guy that got--recruited by that 30 year old guy, not this team of hackers
    • So having said that the Task Force did a lot of research on this on this Bradley guy
    • And this ENSYM company that's mentioned prominently
    • Now, it's it's not enzyme with a Z it's enzyme turn the Z around to an S
    • And I think its SYMA
    • TF: YMA
    • I think it's actually [ENSYMA (ENSYMA ENGINEERING)] yeah
    • Now, give me some of the background on this guy he's he's a graduate at George Washington
    • TF: yeah master's degree George Washington in public administration
    • G: Well his business is in he worked for CERN
    • TF: a DoD gun license in Texas
    • G: He said he worked for a secret Intelligence agency
    • TF: Yes Secret Government company
    • And I'm gonna guess that's gonna be like a DynCorp or Leidos or Conceras or something like that
    • TF: And he said that he was working on viruses--admitted to that, but he will not go into the details of that
    • G: And his wife has a company called Global Logistics
    • So is she running stuff all around the world to CERN, like Californium, as well as bioweapons?
    • It's kind of although the whole ratline thing that we've been talking about through the whole series, potentially
    • TF: Right, [google redacted] AND HIS WIFE WAS A PART OF THE AIR FORCE NATIONAL GUARD AND SHE HAS A LOGISTICAL BACKGROUND, [/google redacted] she has a degree from Harvard, she does a lot of it a lot of Education behind her, a lot of different companies that she's involved in, a lot of logistics, it's kind of similar stuff that we've seen many many times
    • G: Throughout the whole seriously
    • So--this and the reason why I say Tewksbury, Massachusetts it could be that that's a wink
    • If you have this new guard an old guard--the whole War of the Roses in England was new guarda nd old guard
    • Richard the third, I always think of as Dick Cheney, you know, "Now, as winter of our discontent, made ready by the summer of York"
    • If that's the old guard, if Cheney--Bush all those guys Rumsfeld, and then on the left side Podesta and Manafort etc are the old guard,
    • The new guard could be--Pompeo, Mattis, Dunford, potentially Kelly, potentially the DIA guys like Flynn and Tony Shaffer are the new guard
    • If you wanted to really embarrass the old guard, and say, "hey we know your tricks. By the way, this guy was an expert (or not an expert)...But he was carrying around a lot of Blackberry enterprise servers as well as BlackBerries. Is he the replacement for Imran Awan, for secure encrypted communications?"
    • Again, anytime I see that it's kind of like, "well why do you have a burner phone--why do you have 18 burner phones in your backseat?", sir? --That kind of thing
    • It's kind of another signature, that says, "hey this person could be involved in illegal activity"
    • The best way for the old guard to catch the new guard to embarrass the old guard is to catch them in a city about ready to do something--
    • The Boston Marathon is coming up on the 17th in Boston: is this another repeat of the Boston Marathon?
    • Remember Graham Fuller yeah I did the Gladio plan Gladio B, now, is this Gladio C
    • Again, the Clockwork Orange thing--let's let's make a lot of terrorist incidents to get funding and keep our power--is that what's happening?
    • And the fact it's in Tewksbury was one of the key battles of that War of the Roses, where the new guard won and made our current Queen
    • So any last thoughts on?
    • TF: the only other thought was he called the police saying that he thought someone was breaking into his room at the hotel--they had guns in this hotel, which makes absolutely no sense to me if you have a--a storage full of AR-15s and weapons and gas masks and stuff like that, you call the police on yourself
    • TF: Especially if you're part of some secret Government program
    • G: Unless the new guard was trying to embarrass you
    • TF: Right, or the new guard made the call
    • G: the new guard made the call that was embarrassing you
    • {{ 911: just an observation: Maybe Agent Pettiworth et al thought YOU and Jason were part of the new guard and not just concerned citizens? }}
    • {{ 911: youtube is very incapable of transcribing TF, its annoying as f }}
    • TF: They said [that/not?] for the police to go into the house. It was coming out in the paper is that he made the phone call and that seems kind of ridiculous to me. Maybe the new guard made the phone call
    • G: Unless he had a remote camera, where he could see people going in to
    • TF: even then he would go back himself. I mean you wouldn't call the local cops
    • G: Right. So it looks like maybe that may be Andy's coming in to cover for him or something
    • But it looks like it we could have averted something happening
    • I think of Claude D'estre every time I think of the Boston Marathon
    • And [thinking] "Claude you would look at awful lot like that guy who was six feet away from the bomb, and is this another Colorado CIA School of Mines operation?"
    • So we'll see we'll see what happens
    • But I think people are going to connect the dots on this one
    • And certainly there's a very active Q, would you say Deep Milwaukee?
    • There's a an active Q discussion on this right now?
    • DM: Not Q but the anons
    • G: Ok not Q but the Anons
    • So there you have it
  • Day 164.4. SAIC’s Sam Visner Did NSA, MdA, and MITRE - YouTube
    • It's day 164 part 4
    • So here is where I met Deep Florida, this boarding officer for the Coast Guard the other night
    • He kind of confirmed the things that we had said about maritime data awareness packages
    • And how that they could call off interdiction people like The Stzroks family in Corpus Christi, or The Strokes family in San Diego can say at the Coast Guard level uh-uh from DIA can send a message down saying
    • No interdiction guide that boat to the target or I could bring a yacht into Port of Miami or port of Jacksonville or Port of Tampa or all the way up and down the coast--Charleston, South Carolina, Virginia Beach, all the Navy ports all the way up to where Joe Crowley is with his Wackenhut boat
    • So that's good
    • I want to talk to Deep Florida again, and we probably need to talk to him more, because that's real on the line, on the front lines Intelligence, where he was--seeing these same drug dealers over and over and over again at the 24 mile marker, and the nautical mile marker
    • The other thing about the first story we did today which was Bill Binney
    • It kind of dovetailed into that because SAIC, is the one who wrote the maritime data awareness package for all this
    • SAIC is also the company that wrote trailblazer, the program that took the place of thinthread--Bill Benny's thinthread
    • And the guy who bought it is a guy by the name of well there was one guy by the name of Ben Black, who was SAIC
    • And then he hired a guy named Sam VISNER who was also SAIC
    • So a lot of these NSA guys end up being SAIC guys
    • And that's the revolving door as far as the Navy's concerned
    • And you might have seen us cover that when we went up to Laurel racetrack
    • We talked to all the SAIC guys ex-Admirals who were--parlaying their horses around the Laurel Park
    • The second story we did today on Frank Bradley, Frank enzyme Bradley, was also interesting because he's in these global Intelligence files of the WikiLeaks
    • And I looked at the files there's 29 of them
    • And they're mostly spreadsheets
    • And there's it's kind of the same kind of audit coded spreadsheet
    • It goes from 2004 to 2011 there's 29 spreadsheets
    • And his emails in there
    • And it's for like 1995 a month
    • And there's all these Army guys
    • So that unlike--Bill Binney, and the Navy, and SAIC, and NSA
    • This was the second story we did today which is Frank enzyme Bradley, with the Bradley Fighting Vehicle right, turns out its Army--is that a fake name, because he's Army
    • And he's dispersing Army--gas masks and flashbang grenades and all sorts of things to JTTF units all over the country to these dog teams that that we've got?
    • Who knows--we don't know that
    • But it is interesting he is in this kind of list
    • And does that list get compromised in 2011?
    • ...And that's why the Fusion GPS is created?
    • Still, we don't know the answer to that either
    • But meeting you had another whistleblower here, so we're gonna stay in Milwaukee a little bit longer
  • Day 164.6 Meet Leah Vukmir - Next Senator From Wisconsin - YouTube
    • It's day 164 I think this is six
    • So we met the Senate candidate here that's going up against Tammy Baldwin
    • I wanted to--make a political statement, helping Paul Nealon against Paul Ryan here
    • Now, he lost by 50 points
    • So--Paul Ryan's gonna win
    • But it's probably more important that Leah Vukmir win as the candidate in the Senate seat, because the weight Wisconsin's organized is they have one Republican Senator and they have one Democratic Senator
    • Ron Johnson, as you probably know as the Republican Senator, he's in the Intelligence Committee...and been a good supporter of transparency
    • And then there of course is Johnson Wax in Milwaukee
    • And then there's Johnson Controls in Milwaukee the--the building controls
    • And then there's also Johnson & Johnson and Racine
    • So there's a lot of Johnson's going on here--I'm gonna stay away from that {{LOL}}
    • But Tammy Baldwin the Democrat is coming up for reelection
    • And the III I talked to her quite a bit
    • Leah is a very nice person, and she gave me about a half an hour of her time
    • And what I like about her she's a nurse
    • So she's got--she's just a nurse who wants to do the right thing
    • But she's very involved with manufacturing
    • And very involved with the police unions, the fire unions, the emergency services, all the people that are first responders
    • So I really wanted to give a strong statement of support
    • And again, a candidate that comes out says "hey I saw you, I want to come out, I want to meet you I want to introduce myself"
    • And I think these are the important people
    • She said I wasn't on the Trump train at first--she's a big Scott Walker person
    • She was part of that whole kind of hey you can't hold the--Government and the people, SEIU, you can't hold everybody hostage
    • But she said hey as as I got to know Trump better I got on the Trump train, and I'm a really strong Trump supporter
    • Again, I think Trump of I sat with all slew of of Trump supporters
    • Democrat and Republican tonight
    • And the key thing I keep hearing is: he's a businessman. He wants to bring jobs back to Wisconsin, and Michigan, and Ohio, I'm from Ohio--Indiana, I'm from Indiana
    • I want they want to bring jobs back I don't care if it's Mugwump or whatever, your party is, Trump wants to bring jobs back
    • So I want to support her I want to tweet her out
    • Again, it's Leah VUKMIR V U K M I R
    • And I think it's just a strong candidate
    • I think it's it's a person who it didn't necessarily doesn't have Paul Neilins background in manufacturing
    • But she know she's making an active effort--she's been in 66 of the 72 counties
    • And I just wanted to make a strong statement, because I just believe that she comes out, everyone I introduced her to tonight she's listened to and interacted with and listened
    • And as is kind of a person of the people
    • So I don't normally do political things
    • But this is a candidate I felt very strongly about, and her platform
    • And she needs to of course when the primary--it's a late primary here in Wisconsin--it's an April primary
    • So it's important that we do a lot of meet and greets
    • And a lot of fundraisers early to make sure that these kind of candidates get a chance to win in November against a kind of a very globalist
    • And I hate the word 'globalist'
    • I like the word 'carpetbagger' -- I've seen the destruction of towns in my hometown in Fort Wayne Indiana International Harvester plant left when I was in--teenager
    • And I've seen the destruction in Ohio, firsthand
    • And I've seen the destruction in Michigan
    • So I'm not as familiar with Wisconsin
    • But--you got Harley Davison
    • And we had this trade discussion--let's just take all the names
    • And brand names out of it
    • If it was Brand X over here
    • And that's your trade representative
    • And brand Y over there take China out of it take take the U.S. out of it
    • If your guy came back, and said hey I got a great deal we pay 35% tariff over there
    • And we get 1.2 percent tariff on their stuff coming--isn't that a great deal?
    • Everyone would say you're no longer our trade representative--get out
    • That's what we have right now,
    • And I think it's a hundred percent tariff on harley-davidson products in in Japan
    • And at least to 35% in China--I'd like to check those facts
    • So anyway lots of trade discussions
    • I know everybody's watching Final Four, but I just wanted to throw that out that we have a US Senate can adhere tonight that came out to me, and she wanted to tell her story, so there you have it
  • Day 165.1. The Good America - Binney, Wormwood - Olson Part 1 - YouTube
    • It's day 165
    • And this is part one Happy Easter everyone
    • Still bloody cold here somebody from Tewksbury--Gloucester, actually--about five miles from Tewksbury
    • Said they reenact the Battle of Tewkesbury every year
    • So I thought that was interesting
    • So maybe we'll reenact the old guard and the new guard with the Tony Schaefer and the Cyber Command boys
    • I expect Tony Schaefer to be getting a position with the Trump administration here pretty quickly in the Intelligence area
    • And maybe these Army guys--these Army Intel guys will push through a split with NSA and the Navy Intel guys
    • So we'll have a check on the Navy Intel boys
    • So anyway that's Tewksbury
    • So that's this battle reenactment they have in Tewksbury, where this guy was caught with these enzymes Frank enzyme Bradley
    • Riding around and his Bradley Fighting Vehicle throwing out bill swing enzymes on the population flu and flu viruses on the population it
    • Was he doing that? Who knows
    • But we can go look to Tewksbury now, every year to reenact our battle between this Navy
    • And Intel Command
    • And these new Army cyber boys that's that battle is developing one two great documentaries out
    • And it almost tells our story in terms of what a format of this story might look like
    • One is the "Good American", which tells a Bill Binney story about how he had Thinthread how this guy named a SAM Visner came in said oh my gosh this is great we're gonna do trailblazer instead collected all
    • Then when 9/11 happens, Sam Visner is the guy who says, "this is a cow we can milk for 15 years at SAIC"
    • So he leaves NSA, the Sam Visner, and goes to SAIC
    • And these are direct quotes--that this is the--opportunity of a lifetime
    • That same Sam visitor is in this Q discussion now, with this MITRE group in this this Highland Forum in this kind of public-private, pay-to-play partnerships
    • So, interesting to follow these things "full flight of the arrow" as I call that, all the way from 9/11 pre 9/11 all the way till now,
    • Sam Visner still doing--and SAIC--does the maritime data awareness program, said that ZIPZORP was talking about SAIC
    • SAIC formulates themselves with a new name called LEIDOS it's kind of a shuffle giving us a little "lead" LEIDOS shuffle--it's still SAIC, psst STILL SAIC
    • So a little Leidos shuffle there
    • So anyway the good American talks about how 9/11 could have been avoided with Bill Benny's Thinthread
    • And a lot of the folks I've talked to Diane Roark at length
    • I've talked to Curt Wiebe
    • And interacted with him on Twitter talked with Bill Binney
    • So a lot of the people in the series I recognized
    • And I've never never talked to a Thomas Drake, though, Tom Drake
    • But I would like to
    • But I think it's a great series to watch for the first part of our series, before the Awans got involved which is surveillance
    • And the misuse of surveillance
    • And maybe the Awan's are a part of that too, because you use a third-party Intelligence service like PAC ISI to have deniability on surveillance
    • But then there's a second part, which is not just surveillance, but now disruption we're actually gonna go out and try to make you--your life miserable
    • And that's really the second documentary
    • And it's a six-part 40-minute a shot documentary called Wormwood
    • But it is the dirty tricks part of the CIA, getting rid of you once you become a problem, once you start saying hey this isn't good
    • And we're using these truth serums and scopolamine to do--parties it--late at night in Montreal with--our good doctor up there, Dr. Gottlieb, where we did a series at the <
  • Day 165.2. Wormwood Part 2 - Bill Swing’s Ft Derrick - YouTube
    • This is part 2 of day 165
    • And this is following up on wormwood
    • Great movie, because it it's kind of also William Kobe versus Sy Hersh in terms of getting the story about out about Frank Frank Olson
    • This guy who was worked at MKULTRA, Sidney Gottlieb, at the McGill University in Montreal where we were in this series
    • So a lot of the places
    • And things that we've mentioned the series Fort Detrick and the bio weapons program in Maryland...are you go around to these different places and it connects all the dots in a long format, which is really nice
    • And here's Sy Hersh at the end saying, "hey this story's too big for me"
    • And we're we heard that before I feel like he was just recording our ending, and just said well let's just slap it on the end of this documentary
    • But anyway you'll see Sy Hersh say this is story's too big for me at the end, in that in that story
    • But this guy Frank Enzyme Bradley--being caught: was that just so they could double down the amount of spending on the Boston Marathon on the 17th?
    • So was that kind of an inside job the old guard kind of their little clockwork orange' Games?
    • Fear
    • Or was it the new guard was it kind of the new US Cyber Command--kids was with with Flynn and Tony Shafer who I expect to be named to position Intelligence position with Trump here pretty quick?
    • Was it this new split?
    • This new separation of powers were gonna have between the Army guys--the US Cyber Command, and the Navy guys that the NSA?
    • Who knows? We'll see what happens
    • But it was interesting tie into this guy who was at the CDC, who went disappearing
    • Is that why all these flu viruses are being disseminated in these different places?
    • Who knows
    • And also we have the NRA event coming up in March May 3rd 4th and 5th
    • Did Krylova and Bogacheva go to that before? Yes of course they did
    • That was in Dallas this year
    • But where was it before?
    • Where where was Ted Cruz? Where with all those events?
    • We still don't know--none of that's come out
    • And one of the other things I've noticed about the Q phenomenon is I much I have a much greater understanding of how unknowns with Q and being on boards
    • And talking with all these people last night that follow Q
    • And the creation of these memes
    • And I think that's something that our series needs to do is create memes from the series
    • And so I'm gonna continue to create these playlists
    • So that people can go through
    • And say here's all the Navy Intel--from beginning to end in the whole series
    • And then create a Navy Intel meme with the old ones because I think the ones are extension of Navy Intel
    • And then do the same thing for the other significant memes in the in the series
    • So even though Q took a lot of my viewers away
    • And a lot of my researchers away, in a way it's good, because they show you a more effective way of doing open sourcing, creating these memes...
    • So I look forward to a good day of reporting
    • We won't say where all the places we're going, but have a happy easter everyone
  • Day 165.3. Preview of Andre Taggart Reveal - NNSA - YouTube
    • OK It's day 165 and this is part three
    • And this is sort of a sneak peak to the solution to the whole series
    • And I've said before we're kind of going from a pay-to-play world where things were doing below the table
    • And I the three initials there are MBZ the crown prince of Abu Dhabi
    • And sort of Hillary Clinton moving into the Trump world which is MBS, which is above the board--crown prince of Saudi Arabia or just do everything aboveboard
    • And the people who are doing the below the board business are pissed
    • So this series really has been looking at how that below the board business was done
    • So collecting metadata on how that was done--David Petraeus--the create the creation of this rogue NSA which is NNSA
    • Which is Not so Nice NSA
    • Basically created a Uranium cover for the last 20 years
    • And everything basically below that was this weapons for drugs or weapons for minerals or weapons for human resources kind of business
    • And that's the story of the last 20 years in Hillary Clinton and the whole crew,
    • And Navy Intel and her kind of unholy creation of this alliance with with NCIS or or this just rotten core inside a Navy Intel
    • So I just created a list about Navy Intel if you want to review the Navy Intel list if you haven't been following this series
    • But basically you have to find the server: where are they doing this?
    • You have to physically find it
    • So we go to Washington DC we we find--we collect a lot of metadata
    • We find the Lorton address where all this business is being conducted
    • Now, I do I think that's the real address?
    • No, that's the parallel construction if they ever get caught
    • They say there's deniability--it's just a just a group of people that are doing--find a bank fraud there's a small deal--it's not a big deal
    • The real action is at the Navy Yard
    • And that building 213 an old DIA building which was called a Threat Analysis Center
    • And this we've said this in the series for almost a year
    • So this isn't any surprise to anyone
    • The part I'm gonna let out today is I knew Taggart was a fake from the beginning
    • And I knew Tane Taggart was a fake from the beginning
    • I knew that I mean they weren't--just renting the property
    • But there was a reason why I had to go with that deception, because you let people who are in the business
    • (And they're just doing their jobs, right?)
    • You let people who are doing the business let the let the charade play out let the school play play out because you get valuable data although all along the way
    • I had to make Taggart the hero in order so other people would come forward and so he would continue talking
    • That was the key part
    • Keep giving us more metadata
    • It's too bad we couldn't have had a couple of more interviews with Taggart a couple of more interviews with Laurel Everly
    • All the people that are kind of either knowingly or unknowingly involved
    • An Tane Taggart would have been a good interview
    • Jacquayla would have been a good interview
    • But that's fine we still solve a puzzle now
    • Which is basically the drives were the takeaways for going to Pakistan--that those were the real drives--the ones that went in March, not the ones that were the decoys in April, that were left in the Rayburn office building
    • And that was the server's--that's how the trade occurred
    • It was on that caucus server--the drugs for weapons trade
    • The next thing was once got the servers--and the Sprayer home could have also been a place where people were were compromised
    • But then the next piece in in the whole thing is actually how do they do it?
    • And it was with these containers and
    • So we got down to the containers
    • And then how what goes into container?
    • So we really really got to a granular level with the cars--Alpha Jalloh ring to do all that
    • And everything else since that has been proving who with in Navy Intel have been the key people to put this whole thing together?
    • So I'll just leave it right there Taggarts a good guy
    • I think in Bethesda I remember I was in Bethesda, Maryland
    • And I almost said Taggarts role
    • And I held off, because I wanted to find out more about the people that were inside Navy Intel they we're actually running this
    • But I think you may know who who those people are already
    • But I'll just leave that for a more non XSTAR general logistics pay-sized version
  • Day 165.4. Saipov’s Mt Prospect Trucking - Near Blues Brothers Auto Auction - YouTube
    • It's day 165 here we are at beautiful Bussy Road
    • Go down to the end of this road on Bussy Road here in beautiful Mount Prospect
    • And you have the Mount Prospect auto auction of Blues Brothers Fame
    • Remember that Jake said we are on a mission from God
    • So the interesting thing about this is Saipov
    • Saipov truckers
    • They have a Saipov--the guy who ran down did the run down in Chelsea--ran over those five Argentinians
    • I think one of them was a nuclear scientist
    • The other one was that woman from Belgium the Belle from Belgium
    • We also have though sighs I've had a trucking company in Cincinnati trucking company
    • And car company in Cleveland car company here in Mount Prospect, Illinois close to Rahm Emanuel, close to Schneider, we're jan Schakowsky's district now
    • And of course one in Tampa
    • So the key here is chain migration and lottery: not such a good plan
    • The Saipov truckers? Not such a good plan
    • The Uzbekis--drugs going one way, weapons going the other, Uranium cover: not such a good idea
  • Day 166.1 Naugty NSA School Play Falling Apart - YouTube
    • It's day 166 part 1
    • And yesterday I revealed Andre Taggart is sort of a player in a Shakespearean play, if you will, covering the Awans, and the state support of the Awans spy ring in Congress, as well as Awan-Contra: the trading scheme for weapons and drugs in the Congress
    • Did they also have a sex ring in Congress, with all of the Awans beatings?
    • Well that's for another day
    • But certainly Taggart would have nothing to do with that
    • But the I am dubbing NNSA or the naught NSA as the key conspirator behind this, in much the same way we can say the revolt from the West at Tewkesbury 500 years ago was led by Richard the 3rd, I'm pinning this on Andrew McCabe, Hillary Clinton, and the NNSA
    • This is going to be a kind of a as we've said before kind of a power elite move
    • Its gonna be SAIC, key contractors like Lockheed, Northrop Grumman, doing major projects like Trailblazer at NSA Bill Binney Fame versus Thinthread, as well as Maritime Data Awareness applications like the application we singled out which was the Pandas, which which lines up well with Seth Rich in the Congress
    • You don't remember yesterday or the symbol first of all for NNSA
    • Here's I dubbed this this morning about four hours ago
    • And I talked about the different contractors involved in the NNSA
    • Now, I also created a playlist
    • So if you're not familiar with all the eleven or twelve different videos I've done on NSA
    • But the key here is Uranium under color-of-law with Uranium, now, I can trade anything below
    • And it provides me kind of the same sort of drayage that it provided the British Navy
    • Don't tell me what's of below decks just tell me how much it weighs and give me my commission for transporting it
    • And I do believe that Navy Jack has kind of I'm not going to say manipulated Crowdsource the Truth
    • But I do believe it has been sort of an information operation since the beginning to put the lid on this NNSA activity
    • I think the folks there knew that this would eventually come out if the crowd dug in on it
    • And there's been all kinds of diversionary tactics
    • But I think yesterday, Navy Jack threw the towel in
    • And now, he's trying to do anonymous strikes
    • So I won't say who Navy jack is specifically, but there are a few Navy Jack's out there
    • And specifically I think what they want to bury as this Andre Taggart interview in this Laurel Everly interview
    • Because it flies directly in the face it flies directly in the face of the truth and
    • But they give away key facts that unravel this whole NNSA pay-to-play scheme
    • I think also all of the anywhere you see those routers that at the Sprayer house that Jason filmed are going to be important as well
    • So I do believe the NNSA is trying to shut it down
    • Whether that's a Navy Jack or not we don't know for sure
    • But here's another article that came out that said, "oh by the way we all signed a slip a paper that advocated our rights of checking out and vetting The Awans in this scheme"
    • It's obvious that once a spy ringin Congress and also arms for drugs trading ring in Congress has state support and
    • So after the fact these 44 different Democrats are gonna say, "oh, but there was a piece of paper that we could sign that have been abdicated all our responsibilities in terms of vetting, because Debbie Wasserman-Schultz said so"
    • And I think we're hot on the trail of all the pieces of this network
    • They brought in these Uzbeki truckers to ship this stuff around here in Chicago--where I am in Mount prospect--was just one of the many trucking companies two in Ohio, one in New Jersey, in Paterson, New Jersey; one in Tampa, Florida as you can see here
    • So eventually with research this will all come to light
    • And that's why I think they want NNSA wants to bury these buried these films of Andre Taggart
    • So that's where we are today
    • I just want to say that I think we're hot on the trail
    • The metadata leads me to believe more than ever that we will put the pieces of the puzzle together even if we don't get certain documents from the court
  • Rosemont Casino - Bring Out Your Hawala and Your Dead - YouTube
    • Beautiful day 166 this is part two here at the Rosemont casino
    • And I just want to show you if you just recently had a sniper incident where an unfortunate person died at your hands you could bring the body here
    • And I'll show you how far you have to go to turn the body in to get five thousand dollars in chips here at the Rosemont casino
    • And I'm not kidding
    • If you look up Bioresource Center
    • And this is a show we did a long time ago I think it might have been over a year ago
    • We talked about there was prisoners at Holman square down south of Chicago down by the United Center where the Bulls used to play
    • That was a key place for bringing in--just as Christopher Steele does liaison operations, Intelligence operations in the United States for the FBI, we do liaison operations for other countries here in the United States for them
    • So we torture prisoners here for other countries
    • Again, that eludes their rules about informing their oversight bodies about operations
    • So if you don't remember what a liaison operation was: it's a way of avoiding the reporting that's in our Constitution about talking to the gang of eight, which is four people from the Congress on the Senate side, four people in the Congress on the on the side of the Senate
    • Two Senators from each party, two Congressmen from each party
    • But literally right there village of Rosemont is where BioResource Recovery Center was
    • Now, I'd only have to walk a little bit further down under that bridge to actually go to the USDA facility
    • Now, the USDA facility--if you recall--is where what we had right next to our our Gülen schools
    • I can't remember--they usually give a a name like Wisdom schools or Affinity schools or--Great Clocks by Kids Schools--they give them some kind of lofty name which is fine
    • But if you remember my visit there we basically had a lot of great teachers
    • So that they can farm the money through, and launder the money through
    • It's always great it's like a union you can always farm the money through gangsters love unions lots of workers lots of paychecks
    • But then you have one guy who can sue who's an English teacher from Turkey or some country like that: usually Turkey
    • And he is the interpreter
    • And then you got one guy in the back that cannot speak a word of English
    • And I call him the Halal money changer
    • So right behind me is O'Hare Airport
    • And literally all day he does is just count out Halal
    • Now, what comes into this you a facility here?
    • Well fruits and vegetables and also meat perishables things that could carry insects etc or food borne viruses
    • So they need to be irradiated
    • They need to make a trip to Ames, Iowa
    • So if you don't remember that part of our trip, you can go back and look at that
    • USDA
    • Now, I did
    • (I hope I don't get a copyright strike on the parking lot music)
    • I did interview a USDA person, and it turns out they loan a lot of money now to women farmers and also minority farmers
    • They want to get women started in farming and minority farmers
    • This turns out to be extremely difficult to get an American a loan
    • But very simple if you're from a different country
    • I know that's gonna us I know how hard that is gonna be for people to believe
    • Again, ninety nine point five percent of the people in USDA doing a great job
    • I only need to compromise 0.5%
  • Day 166.3. Delivering Imran’s Bitcoin To Rahm From O’Hare - YouTube
    • Day 166 part 3
    • I've now, made it from the airport with all the Halal cash
    • And the hawala you can see the armored car here I'm bout ready to take it in to Rahm Emanuel here at City Hall behind me
    • But before I do that because it's all Bitcoin now, it's all on hard drives, it's all on Imran's hard drive
    • So there's literally terabytes worth of Bitcoin
    • So makes it easier than the old days where you needed a big Brinks truck I still like to ride in the Brinks truck
    • But as you remember from the movie The Blues Brothers
    • You've got the Picasso here looks like it's a different color
    • Maybe this isn't the Picasso? Maybe--the I thought the Picasso was across the street from City Hall anyway
    • Well we'll go over there and find out if it's a Picasso or not
    • Maybe they replaced the Picasso
    • This is the scene where all the police cars pile up the Chicago police cars the Chicago's finest over there as you can see I do believe this is Richard Mary Daly square if it's not that I've just made a mistake
    • But as you can see now, all I need is hard drives to take Bitcoin to Pakistan
    • And I'm saying that probably happened on the 7th of March
    • And I picked up where I found the decoy about a month later with Andre Taggart
    • And now, of course I've exposed Taggart, because I see them shutting down the channel
    • I see I think there's foul play--in the runs--rotten in the state of Denmark, something rotten in the state of Denmark as Hamlet would say
    • So if that isn't Picasso then I don't know what is
    • But I do think there's something rotten in the state of Denmark
    • And they're shutting down Jason's channel we have to get all those interviews
    • And phone calls from Taggart before they go away as--44 different Democrats, maybe up to 50 waved, doing a background check on Imran Awan
    • And all the conspirators Lisa Maria Bartiromo says it's the biggest story of the year that's not been covered
    • The biggest uncover story of the year the story is breaking now and you're live to see it here in Chicago
    • And just I want to say hi to Rahm
    • Bole di Juggies is doing great, Rahm
    • I got all the Bitcoin: we got it all!
    • We got it all baby, nobody stopped us: Andy didn't stop us at the airport: we got it all
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5 Foods You Should Never Buy Organic

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Your goal may be healthy meals, but buying everything organic can quickly amount to a small fortune. That's why it's important to know exactly which organic foods deserve your dollars, and which ones are better left on the shelf, says consumer advocate Lisa Lee Freeman, savings expert at Flipp, a free app that gives shoppers access to coupons, weekly flyers, and their shopping lists all in one place.
For example, Freeman believes dairy, meat, and poultry are best bought organic. "Put those items on your list in Flipp and find the store that has deals on organic meat and milk. It's a good way to choose where to shop in your area from week to week and doing so will save you a lot of money." (Pro tip: Scan your loyalty cards into the app and when you tap on digital coupons they'll be loaded directly onto those cards.) Keep scrolling for the five food categories where organic doesn't always mean better, plus the one product Freeman says is worth the organic price hike.
1 SEAFOOD
There are no USDA standards regulating what it means for fresh fish and shellfish to be organic, so if you're seeing seafood labeled as organic, it was farmed, not caught, Freeman explains. "Your better bet is to buy wild," she says. Wild-caught fish is healthier because "it's never treated with antibiotics, it's naturally high in Omega-3 fatty acids and antioxidants, and it's sustainable and environmentally friendly."
2 BROCCOLI, CABBAGE, AND CAULIFLOWER
While the "Dirty Dozen"—produce with the highest levels of pesticide residue—changes year over year depending on factors like weather conditions and types of chemicals used, there are certain veggies that consistently remain off the list, says Freeman. Asparagus, cabbage, cauliflower, corn, eggplant, and onions do not retain pesticide residue at the same level as other vegetables. (This year, sweet corn tops the list of the Clean Fifteen.)
3 THICK-SKINNED FRUIT
Freeman always opts for organic strawberries (they're the "dirtiest" of the dozen this year) but when it comes to fruit like avocados, grapefruit, mangoes, melons, papayas, and pineapples, you don't need to be as picky. These thick-skinned treats tend to be lower in pesticides anyway, but when you peel or cut off the skin you eliminate the riskiest parts, she says. This includes bananas, though Freeman points out the price difference between organic and non-organic versions isn't usually that great. "But again, there's no reason to buy organic [bananas] if you're having to make choices to maintain a budget," says Freeman.
4 JUNK FOOD
While USDA organic standards rule out artificial colors and flavors and high-fructose corn syrup, Freeman recommends saving a couple of bucks by checking for those ingredients yourself in conventional junk food. "People think it's more virtuous if you buy organic cookies and chips, but the fact is, it's still a lot of fat and sugar. It's a treat. Focus on the ingredients instead and you can make healthier choices based on nutrition."
5 PACKAGED FOODS
Even when certified organic, processed foods simply aren't as nutritious their fresh, whole, organic counterparts. "You're better off spending your money on organic milk, meat, poultry, cheese, rather than packaged items," says Freeman. Again she recommends reading nutrition labels to find more cost-effective alternatives. Look for foods made with whole grains that are high in fiber and low in calories and sugar. Avoid trans fats, additives, preservatives, and added sugars.
6WHAT'S WORTH THE SPLURGE?
"If I were to only pick one thing to always buy organic, without qualms it would be organic grass-fed meat," says Freeman. Studies have shown it's more nutritious than conventionally raised meat and the organic seal means the animal wasn't treated with antibiotics or growth hormones, nor did it eat synthetic feed grown with pesticides. "Grass-fed organic beef is higher in Omega-3 fatty acids and antioxidants—it's more expensive but it's worth the splurge," says Freeman.
Source

Cryptocurrency #ICO #Blockchain #TokenSale #agrotechfarm #Token #AI #coin #bonus #platform #bitcoin #ethereum #crypto #currencies #project #ATF #cryptotrading #icoinvest #iconews #technology #agrotechnology #ecology #organicfood #organicindustry #top5 #USDA #BROCCOLI #PACKAGED #market

submitted by AgroTechFarmICO to u/AgroTechFarmICO [link] [comments]

U.S. organic grain trading ramps up

KANSAS CITY, MISSOURI, U.S. — Trading of food-grade organic grains and soybeans picked up and prices increased during the March-April period, according to Mercaris, the organic and non-GMO trading platform and market information company.
Contracting increased in March and has grown to seasonal levels in April and so far in May comparable to past years, said Ryan Koory, senior economist at Mercaris.
Food-grade organic hard red winter wheat averaged $13.64 a bushel in March-April, up 7¢ from the prior two-month period, and up $2.77 from January-February, with year-ago not quoted.
“Organic hard red winter wheat is holding mostly steady at the start of the second quarter, with the delivered price averaging $13.64 per bushel over the two-month period ending in April 2018,” Koory said. “Trade volumes remained low but consistent with the prior month, in keeping with the generally quite tone of the market.
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“Crop conditions are becoming more of an issue for organic winter wheat. The crop in two of the largest organic winter wheat producing states (Wyoming and Colorado) continue to look positive, with the percentage of winter wheat rated good to excellent remaining near or above the 5-year average according to the USDA. However, winter wheat in Montana, the second-largest organic winter wheat state, has declined, with the percentage of the winter wheat crop rated good to excellent declining to 54% the week ending May 6, down from the 5-year average of 63%. Montana’s winter wheat crop outlook has declined since the middle of April as warmer weather has allowed for more time in the field, and a better assessment of the 2018-19 wheat crop. Overall, though, the outlook for organic winter wheat remains much more positive than the picture for the conventional sector.”
Prices for organic food-grade hard red spring wheat were quoted at $19.92 a bushel, with the prior two reporting periods unquoted but up $2.52 a bushel a year ago.
“Organic hard red spring wheat trade returned in April after a very sluggish first quarter,” Koory said. “Spring weather conditions have been particularly hard on the 2018-19 spring wheat crop, putting the pace of planting significantly behind the historical norm. As of the week ended May 6, planting across the top-10 organic spring wheat states averaged 30% completed, down 21% from the pace of planting in 2017.”
Organic durum wheat trades were limited in April, Mercaris said, but prices mostly ranged from $14.50 to $16 a bushel.
Organic corn prices averaged $10 a bushel during March-April, up 25¢ from February-March, up 13¢ from January-February and up $1.01 from $8.99 a bushel a year ago, according to Mercaris.
“Organic corn trade was active in April, with Mercaris observing the most volume traded since September 2017,” Koory said. “Despite the increase in trade activity, the market continues to see spot prices capped at $10 a bushel. U.S. corn planting progress remains delayed, with the top two organic corn states — Iowa and Minnesota — behind last year’s pace by 12% and 26%, respectively (as of May 6). Minnesota may be worth watching over the next month, as it is particularly far behind. In 2013 and 2014 yields suffered following a similar delay in planting, and 2018 could experience a comparable cut in production.
“Despite the cold and wet start to the 2018-19 corn crop, prices for fall delivery have not carried a premium this spring. The Mercaris’ recorded average delivered organic corn price for the fourth quarter of 2018 delivery is $9.70 per bushel, within the range of spot quotes since the start of the 2017-18 marketing year. Given the potential for lower yields this fall, spot purchases of food-grade organic corn may become harder to secure over 2018-19.”
Organic food-grade soybean prices were quoted at $21.63 a bushel for the March-April period, up $1.43 from February-March, up $1.17 from January-February and up $1.81 from $19.82 a bushel a year ago.
“Organic soybeans showed some bullishness at the start of the second quarter of 2018, with the March-April average reaching $21.63 a bushel, its highest level since prices peaked in December 2017,” Koory said. “April also saw some quotes breech the $30-a-bu mark.
“Despite gains in the delivered organic soybean price, trade has remained slow. Historically, soybean spot trade activity peaks over the March, April, May time period; however, this trend has remained muted so far in 2018. The pace of soybean planting was slower at the start of spring. However, it appears that producers have mostly caught up over the past week. Organic producers may actually be slightly ahead of last year’s pace. Planting progress in the top-10 organic soybean states averaged 9% completed as of the week ending May 6, up 3% from the same period in 2017.
“Currently organic soybeans contracted for fall delivery are at a slight discount to the current spot price, with the fourth quarter of 2018 food-grade organic soybean price averaging $20.25 a bushel.”
Koory noted that due to the nature of organic production, most farmers do not have the option of switching crops due to weather delays, as conventional growers may switch to soybeans from corn if planting is delayed too long. For organic crops, a farmer has to plant late, which may have a greater impact on yield.
Organic corn and soybean acreage tends to be concentrated in the Upper Midwest and Great Lakes region to provide feed to organic dairies, and food-grade organic production tends to mirror organic feed-grain production. Michigan, Minnesota, Wisconsin and Iowa have considerable organic acreage, along with New York, Texas and California, the latter three of which also are large dairy states.
Price changes from earlier periods sometimes vary from prior published quotes because prices are reported as a rolling average and are sometimes “backfilled” by traders, Koory said.
Mercaris is a comprehensive source of market data and online trading for feed-grade and food-grade organic and non-GMO commodities based in Silver Spring, Maryland, U.S.
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Organic product market expects higher growth

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Food safety continues to be a major concern for Vietnamese consumers.
Food safety is one of the biggest concerns in Việt Nam. The seventh business mission, under the EU Business Avenues in South East Asia programme, will bring more than 40 organic food and beverage producers to Singapore and Vietnam to introduce their quality products to the market. The mission will be participating in EuroSphere 2018 in HCM City from May 18 to 20. A Việt Nam News reporter Vu Hoa talks with experts in the sector about potential and challenges for the organic sector in Việt Nam.
Vũ Kim Hạnh, president of High Quality Vietnamese Goods Business Association
Could you talk about trends and opportunities for the organic food and beverage market in Việt Nam?
Food safety continues to be a major concern for Vietnamese consumers. There has been an increased consumer demand for safe and high quality agricultural food products.
Organic food has become a hot trend in Việt Nam. According to a study on Vietnamese organic enterprises, the current market capacity is estimated to be VNĐ3.5 trillion a year. Today, nearly 80 food and beverage enterprises in Việt Nam manufacture products that have been certified by the EU as organic, including Vinamit, Vinamilk, TH True Milk, ST24 rice, Trung An rice, Lương Quới rice, and Betrimex. Vietnamese companies are keen to continue building on this success through partnerships with EU organic producers. These partnerships can help businesses share knowledge and expertise on organic food production and support the expansion of the organic food markets in both economies.
What are the criteria and demand for organic food labelling in Việt Nam?
Some of the common labels prevalent in the organic food market today are based on international standards such as USDA, EU, JAS. These labels are unique to their geographic origin and are governed by stringent processes and regulations.
Việt Nam is also making proactive steps to enhance the food labeling system for locally produced organic products, through the development of a national organic standard that will come into effect at the end of this year. The Ministry of Science and Technology plans to officially issue a framework to regulate the production, cultivation, husbandry, processing and labeling of organic agricultural products. In addition, the national organic standard will require production and processing systems of organic food producers to be assessed and certified.
Could you share your opinion on what Government and food and beverage businesses can collaborate on to cultivate a higher standard of food safety and healthy eating?
The Government needs to focus on educating businesses on the benefits of producing safe and organic food, the role it plays in saving the environment and opportunities in the organic food market.
Support is needed for businesses that are eager to switch to organic farming methods. Government support is especially required for businesses to adopt organic production processes, and accelerate product commercialisation and expansion.
The Government should also control food safety processes and implement strong sanctions against enterprises that deliberately violate food hygiene and safety conduct. Policy change can help to encourage more businesses to adopt safe practices in organic farming.
Over my last 20 years as a member, the goal of the High Quality Vietnamese Goods Business Association focused on ensuring and improving product quality. As a result of globalisation, Vietnamese enterprises today need to follow international standards that have stringent processes and regulations.
Bruno Angelet, Ambassador of European Union Delegation to Việt Nam
Can you explain the EU organic certification process? What are the steps taken to ensure products bearing the EU organic logo are truly organic and of high quality to end consumers?
EU organic certification encompasses an in-depth, stringent list of processes that organic food producers have to undergo yearly even after approval to ensure quality of organic food during all stages – from production and processing to control and labeling. Apart from building consumer trust, EU organic certification aims to protect the environment and the welfare of animals.
As the EU covers a wide geographical region, the European Commission appoints member states to take responsibility for organic food producers within their individual areas by carrying out annual control checks. These checks help to ensure that organic food producers continue to uphold high quality standards even after being certified.
As a result of the strict regulations and tight controls over organic food producers, more than 70 per cent of Europeans trust organic product labels today. To deepen this trust, the EU mandates organic producers to list ingredients, nutritional value figures, as well as the name of the producer, processor or distributor who last handled the item. This provides transparency while safeguarding the interests and safety of consumers.
How will EU Business Avenues help small-and-medium enterprises (SMEs) expand and meet the demands for organic produces in Việt Nam? How will this benefit Việt Nam’s organic food industry?
After 25 years of deepening economic interaction between European and Asian companies, EU Business Avenues has become a leading business platform supporting successful cross-region partnerships. The Organic Food & Beverage Mission was organised to help European SMEs penetrate the Singapore and Việt Nam markets and eventually the wider Southeast Asia region.
The Organic Trade Association estimates that Vietnamese consume 1.7 million euros worth of organic products each year, highlighting a growing demand for organic food and a strong potential for European SMEs to bridge the gap in the market. While the area allocated for organic farming has continued to expand 3.6-fold since 2010 to more than 76,000 ha in 2017, Việt Nam still lacks quality control, certification standards and regulations to govern the production of organic food.
There is a significant opportunity for European SMEs to penetrate Việt Nam’s organic food market with stringently certified products, thus helping to raise quality standards and ensuring food safety requirements are being met. This year’s business mission will bring over 40 organic producers to Việt Nam to meet local distributors, exporters and importers, supermarket and retail chains, as well as hotel, café and restaurants (HORECA) buyers at Euro Sphere 2018 in HCM City from 18 to 20 May 2018.
Joonas Püvi, Manager of Salvest Ltd
What do you think of the potential in Việt Nam’s organic food market today?
We see a great potential in Việt Nam’s organic food market, especially within the organic baby food sector. As part of our involvement in EU Business Avenues’ Organic Food & Beverage Mission to Việt Nam, Salvest was provided with a team of expertise from a coaching network who educated us on the market and potential opportunities.
We learned that approximately 50 per cent of the entire Vietnamese population is under 30-years-old, highlighting an increase in the overall birth rate over the past couple of decades. Consecutive GDP growth also shows an overall increase in demand for products, including baby food, signaling an opportunity for us to introduce Salvest to consumers. Disposable incomes have also increased, and consumers are willing to pay more for better quality food products, especially baby food. Young parents today are generally well-educated and therefore, tend to make informed decisions on the type of food that’s best for their babies.
What kind of business opportunities are you looking for when coming to Việt Nam?
In Việt Nam, we are mainly looking for distributors who share our values and will be able to bring our products to consumers in the country. Ideally, our partner should have an established position in food distribution and a robust network within the Vietnamese market, and hopefully around the region.
At Salvest, we also believe that our partner relationships are more than just collaborating to sell a product, but to also transfer knowledge. We aim to contribute our years of experience in exporting products to several markets and support new partners with sales and marketing activities to collectively build awareness for our organic food products. — VNS
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THE BLUEPRINT FOR FIXING AMERICA SOONER RATHER THAN AFTER IT IS TOO LATE

BEFORE going further with this, bear in mind it was a response to the previous post "WHAT IF LIBERTY WAS ATTACHED TO HUMANITY" and perhaps one might read that long list of QUESTIONS FOR HUMANITY before diving into issues on how one might repair our corner of the world...onward...
Some people claim we are beyond a "tipping point" of no return. This analysis is commonly applied to global warming to describe the melting permafrost that is releasing methane gas which is believed to be 100 times more potent and lasting than carbon dioxide in causing global warming from the greenhouse effect. Others apply the "tipping point" idea to America's national debt; stating that if we switched from our fiat currency back to a gold standard, we couldn't pay off the interest, let alone our debt, based on current exports and GDP figures. Therefore, we have become a patently bankrupt nation contrary to the principles Thomas Jefferson and others warned us to follow to avoid the use of credit. A bankrupt America in a world of currencies based on a tangible asset like gold or levels of exports would be unable to purchase oil to feed our pathetic industries, let alone our levels of consumer consumption of energy. I managed to get through 2016 without using a drop of petroleum, propane or any other non-renewable source of energy. I studied and invested in solar and wind and it took me more than a decade to select and test the appliances, like a low wattage crock pot placed in an insulated cooler, to learn how to maximize my ability to live on minimal power. Americans don't have a decade to spare.
Denmark did it well. They invested in wind and now boast regions with little or no use for petroleum; which is at the heart of both global environmental destruction, loss of rainforests, pollution of rivers, oceans, aquifers and war, which leaves its own lasting toxic landscape, enormous national debt, widespread death, loss of culture, physical and emotional scars. If poor little Denmark can cure its ills, why can't America accelerate our transition to renewables, save a bundle along the way and reduce our desire or need to engage in wars related to acquiring petroleum reserves, or our need to retain a fiat currency required to fund wars, oil purchases, bribe foreign officials and our own elected leaders. If the spigot of free money were removed, would America be as corrupt as it is today, or as destructive worldwide, as we've become?
I believe part of the "Blueprint for fixing America" involves ridding ourselves of the patently corrupt, financially inept Federal Reserve and if possible, dismantling the BIS, IMF and World Bank, or at the least, installing a series of common sense policies to both upgrade these systems, regulate their actions through intelligent policies designed by a political body that relies on both public opinion through debates and analysis of performance driven QC metrics. The system of printing treasuries and taxing citizens was born, not from political debate or even a public vote, but by a small corrupt group in Congress and our banking system a century ago. It has failed to produce a healthy, debt free nation; the imperialism it funded has failed to produce a healthy, democratic, environmentally sustainable world, or even a world that views America as a true democracy, rather than the brutish arm of global corporations, and it has failed to produce a stronger middle class in America. Therefore, after 100 years of failures, perhaps it is time to replace the defective financial systems and taxes which fund defective military campaigns and patently defective, if not murderous systems of politics.
What will replace "fiat currencies" remains to be seen, though models based on gold, silver and copper seemed to work pretty well before, and future models, such as bitcoin, or credits based on real production of exports, or levels of kwh power from renewables might also prove viable; something, anything, based on a real, tangible asset would be an improvement as it would eliminate the ability of a corrupt banker to simply press a button, create money from thin air, instantly indebting citizens of a nation seen as instant inflation, and then instantly buy their land or bribe their politicians: A person, corporation or group utilizing money for illegal activities would have to actually perform some kind of work to acquire it. Not so the case today.
Whether it is to fix our energy policies, our role of the military in global affairs, our rapidly deteriorating environment, rapidly expanding levels of poverty, homelessness or levels of toxins we are exposed to either from the environment or self-ingested through legal and illegal drugs, our rapidly deteriorating mental health, intellectual capacity, shrinking middle class and standard of living; no matter what the policy is in America that needs to be changed, we aren't changing fast enough. We are like a deer caught in the headlights of a speeding automobile. The revelations of just how corrupt and dysfunctional our government, political and economic systems are has only recently been exposed to those who will study and analyze the evidence, and its so shocking they are either paralyzed or ineffective in bringing about effective change. You can't blame them too much. Faced with a new huge problem we really weren't aware of 20 years ago, and now faced with the prospect of trying to educate a sufficient body of Americans to create the change we must, the proponents for change stumble around testing different solutions; and more often than not, they fail.
That is expected. Democracy as proposed by our Founding Fathers was the first of its kind and is an experiment. Experiments don't always work as planned; usually they do not. The trick in this democratic experiment is to recover before its too late. Whether or not we are past a tipping point is somewhat irrelevant as long as we don't give up. We must continue to innovate, to remain optimistic that we can and will prevail; and remain dedicated to the idea that our form of democracy can be shaped into a true popular democracy where every voice counts, where corporations cannot sway us from an honorable path, where people in other nations can become proud in their own quest to emulate our experiment in democracy without the need for our military to force our current corrupt brand of democracy on their citizens. That process has only exposed our defects to a wider geographic landscape and hardened the resolve of many citizens against mirroring America's brand of democracy. As that resistance continues to increase, our military will find it increasingly difficult to find willing souls in each nation who will undermine governments; and therefore our military and corrupt corporate agenda will need to employ hired guns to execute agendas; witness ISIS and CIA funding to topple Syria. In the old days it was easy to find citizens within a nation who were eager to bring American ideals to overthrow a brutal dictator. Today, the people of Syria living under a patently defective leader would prefer that brand of freedom to anything an "American Democracy" might represent. Today, the American brand of Democracy, as a valued export for nations to acquire, is worth less than toxic toilet paper. Dumping nuclear waste on a foreign nation would be less harmful and they know it.
Its not that the original design of our democracy was either dishonorable, nor was it a bad idea or even poorly designed. In its day it was brilliant and even today it is far superior to the democracy Americans live with daily. We don't have a real voice in the process of electing our President, nor do we have a real voice in the way Congress operates, nor a real voice in the various emerging "secret courts" that increasingly preside over the actions of citizens, nor a real voice in public spending policies that are bankrupting future generations who have even less, if any voice, even faster than they are bankrupting current generations of our young in their 20's, who are far poorer than the older generation who at least had a chance at home ownership and developing a profitable business under some "free", "capitalistic", "market driven" middle class system that is all but gone in America today. What we are witnessing is not only a rapidly shrinking middle class and rapidly expanding population of impoverished, but a rapidly evaporating system of democracy, rapid expansion of our national debt and destruction of the global environment all taking place at the same time.
Its an interlocking series of events that are quite telling in their synergistic effect on each other, yet complex enough to defy our ability to manage today's crisis du jure, let alone plan and execute an intelligent series of steps to bring a halt to these grave trends and thereafter, create a thriving, financially solvent, reasonably moral, non-violent America that can again become a shining beacon of Democracy for all the world to emulate without force; rather by simply becoming envious of our prosperity and the success of our middle class. Today, any envy foreigners might hold for American ideals are primarily focused on the celebs, and a level of wealth, few global citizens will ever attain; nor should they try. The lifestyle of the rich and famous is patently unsustainable and not very good for the financial health of a nation or the environment. Wealth in and of itself is no more evil than a car used in a bank robbery. Wealth, when properly applied can build schools, buy solar panels or wind turbines, or create innovative R&D facilities to invent new technologies that can foster new businesses and provide more Yankee exports. On the other hand, wealth applied to bribe politicians, build leaky oil pipelines or systems that pollute groundwater, or simply to buy a $50,000 dress for a Grammy Award ceremony is dangerous, destructive folly.
Therefore, part of the path out of this mess needs to be a sense of modesty and reality based on what we've learned in the past 200 years about gross decadence and the ability of large groups of citizens to become easily hypnotized by fabulous levels of wealth most of them will never attain. Perhaps in a class entitled Personal Econ 101 we should both encourage people to develop ideas, invent, market, sell and manage a personal business, and include a section on prudent personal policies on how to manage their new found wealth; race tracks, casinos, bars and brothels are probably not good habits to hold if you expect to build and retain a thriving business, or nurture a reasonably sane, healthy family to carry your business and wealth forward to future generations. Teaching kids in any nation to acquire wealth merely so they can buy a new black beamer is not conducive to creating a sustainable society, sustainable financial policies, a sustainable environment, nor a sustainable government or society. Modesty, education and the prudent application of technology, financial resources, labor and mined or manufactured assets all have their place in creating a sustainable world or fixing what ails America and the world today.
It is unfortunate, though easily predictable, that current generations all around the planet have generally lost all hope in obtaining that kind of world. They understand the government corruption; they see through the American Democratic farse and in their minds, if that enlightened nation is but a brutish scam based on corrupt political figures, extortion and murder, what hope does any human have of finding any peace or prosperity in any land? The result is an increasingly predatory nature of our tweens, teens, young adults and even middle aged folks who should know better, but are almost just as selfish and short-sighted as the desensitized generations raised on bloody TV and video games. Murder isn't really so bad as long as you're on the right side of the barrel; its expected in today's world. Get over it.
We have become a mentally sick species destined to extinction if we don't change that attitude. We are living in the 6th great extinction and there is no guarantee our species will survive the process; in fact, some historians and anthropologists note there is a group of wealthy elite who are encouraging a mass die off to bring the human population down to 100M to perhaps 1B from the 7B level today. Perhaps we should let them proceed. Perhaps the earth will be better off after that horror show is over; but the really big question then becomes, if that sick group who would wage global genocide and continued environmental destruction to accomplish their agenda is the primary ruling elite after the bloodbath, what sort of future for habitats, let alone our own species, can we expect from that twisted group?
Its another global problem staring us, the educated, enlightened 21st Century Human in the face, like headlights in the eyes of a deer; and we just don't have all the answers required to put humanity and the planet, or even our own nation, back on a predictable, moral, ethical, sustainable course. And so life in the 21st Century has become a giant hedonistic free-for-all suicide party; the population of predators and sociopaths is growing at a logarithmic rate, while those who would embrace charitable or democratic ideals are quickly being marginalized, or easily used and abused by those with power and money to do so. I personally believe the only way to halt, then reverse these dire trends is for the few remaining souls with a moral compass to unite and develop an action plan to first fix America. But with so many internal challenges, and personality conflicts even between "good souls"; we have failed to unite, we have failed to even be able to clearly identify people of moral fiber, as the many wolves in sheep's clothing are all around us. Recently I did a cursory audit of a huge, wealthy environmental group aimed at "saving dolphins, oceans and the environment", and found they had neither the wisdom to create prudent policies, nor any real effective activity, save their ability to sell t-shirts and expand their member base and revenue streams; very sad.
And so the blueprint to cure America must include QC metrics; how many kids passed a high level math test as a result of your after school, charter school or public school program? How many of them are employed while in college because they clearly understand the student loan program in the U.S. is a patently defective system designed to enslave them? How many understand that trappings of financial slavery and are attempting to live intelligently within their modest means, rather than "...spend money they don't have for things they don't need." (George Carlin).
We need to teach our young that the hypnotic glitz and glamour of the celebs and elite is not nearly as nourishing as a camping trip to a pristine forest that we need to keep pristine. We need to teach them that throwing money at an environmental charity is not quite as effective as simply picking up your trash, as well as some extra trash when visiting a beach. We need to teach them that car pooling is both fun and profitable, and we need to teach them that mending clothing to squeeze the last day out of a pair of shorts can be financially more sustainable and even a lot sexier than trying to acquire a $500 leather jacket, or 7 inch plastic pump cowboy boots. We need to find our roots as a blue collar worker, and Ag sector economy, rather than a nation of dog walkers, maids and gardeners serving the wealthy.
Unfortunately, the population of families able to make a living in the Ag sector is also vaporizing, due to regs related to GMO seeds and USDA policies that have almost eliminated the ability of small farmers to survive. Meanwhile, our blue collar "MAKE SOMETHING USEFUL" jobs are all being outsourced to overseas sweat shops, as are our innovative White Collar Silicon Valley jobs in a world of a rising population of programmers, leaving only a dwindling white collar sector of financial management jobs (who produce few if any useful, tangible, sustainable products we really need, save a thriving toxic derivative market), and a bunch of dog walkers and real estate agents who only sell what already existed; a bit of dirt with some wood and a splash of new paint - the American Home - which is a center for consumption, doesn't actually produce anything useful, including intelligent, caring, charitable kids with any sort of skill set required to fix our nation, let alone our planet. I know of mothers who are so so so proud their son or daughter is a top notch dance champion, and as a musician, I am proud to be able to play rock, jazz or classical piano pieces, even sometimes at public gigs, but if I didn't make something tangible, useful, sustainable during the bulk of the hours in my week I'd feel useless; I'd just be another consumer instead of someone who manufactures SOMETHING tangible that others can use to both improve their standard of living, and reduce their impact on the environment.
Folks who install solar panels do that sort of "honorable, ethical, blue collar work". Granted, they aren't manufacturing something, but at least they are doing some work that leaves a real, tangible asset on a structure that has the immediate effect of reducing America's reliance on petroleum; and that has long-term, positive financial and environmental consequences for the family, community and nation. Turning back to our stellar "Entertainer" kids, or kids studying to become real estate agents, you have to wonder if those grads will be surprised when they wind up as baggers at a grocery store trying to pay down a student loan that will never end, while paying off child support payments for kids they couldn't afford, nor spent time with to educate them on what mistakes to avoid, (nor ever went camping with them to teach them the value of minimalism, or pristine environments), while paying for social programs like Social Security and Obamacare our poor, bankrupt nation that exports almost nothing simply cannot afford. I praise our artists for their studious habits and wonderfully inspiring productions, cutting edge journalism and screen plays that cause us to reflect on ourselves and humanities journey through time; but with an overwhelming onslaught of advertising, high fashion, porn and violence, it might be prudent for every artist to also hold down a "day job", at least part-time, that actually contributed to creating a more financial, environmental and ethically solvent America. Even a part-time daily contribution by every breathing American towards these objectives might help reverse dire trends and create a united population of educated citizens who both care and are doing something constructive to counter-balance our highly destructive, unsustainable way of life today. Parents and schools need to educate kids on balancing selfish, personal agendas with activities that contribute to society in real, tangible production of products and services focused on deploying technologies that move America towards curing our ills before the "tipping point" trends running amuck today topple us over.
The "Stockdale Principle" outlined in the book Good To Great embodies some of these ideals; taking a harsh, honest audit of where we are today and then designing effective management plans to get through the horrid state of affairs and emerge victorious through action based on optimism, and not Pollyanna optimism alone, nor on a fatalistic, hedonistic, careless, if not predatory attitude that seems to enshrine American values at every level of our society. A little discipline is a good thing, when balanced with creative abandon to invent something no one has seen before. A champagne party to celebrate a financial victory is probably also a good thing, IF - key word - you actually accomplished something that helps heal the world or provided some relief to your local community, our nation or a wetlands marsh. Drinking champagne every Sunday morning or buying a new pair of 7 inch plastic pumps just because your debit/credit card allowed it, and you think you deserve it after a 60 hour work week, is a rather short-sighted, if not myopic way of life based on endless consumption, that ignores the increasingly pressing problems of your life, your local community and the global village we all share. Perhaps that $10.00 price you paid for that cocktail might have made a difference had you had saved it to buy a PC keyboard for a child without a computer. Perhaps that $49.00 price for those dress shoes you didn't really need would have been better spent on buying a motherboard for a kid who could learn to install that board into a recycled, dented desktop case, then plug in that new keyboard you also bought them, and build their own PC, complete with a recycled monitor that was headed for a landfill and is now part of a child's at-home education system. Perhaps the parent in that home might remind their child with prudent guidance, that WHEN their math homework was done, THEN they can spend a short time playing some video game on that PC, before they move on to complete their history and science homework, and further remind them that if they fail to keep their grades up, that suite of video games can be uninstalled or blocked altogether. Perhaps instead of turning on the TV to gather the family, which only serves to fracture the family after kids begin wanting consumer items they can't afford, so they begin exploring methods of acquiring capital, like drug dealing in alleys, parents would leave the TV off and focus their energy on helping their kids get through those homework assignments, learn a little math, science and history along the way, learn what it means to create a sustainable home, community and financially solvent nation, and clearly learn what happens if we do not. Perhaps if more parents spent more time educating their kids, and got smarter along the way, more American adults would realize just how under water our nation is, and with some hope derived from that education, learn to fix the mess in their own lives one step at a time.
Its a tall order and I am not sure Americans are willing to give up their baseball games or detective dramas in exchange for spending several hours each evening exploring socially relevant topics; whether political, scientific, or even charitable. But if American consumers don't modify their behavior and levels of consumption, and their hit list of acquisitions, most of which are unattainable due to our shrinking middle class and utter lack of any export industry able to finance our debt without utilizing our defective, bankrupt, imploding global system of fiat currencies; there is no hope for the generation that follows who will repeat the same mistakes because they don't know any better, or weren't educated soon enough to avoid those same mistakes. The painful truth is that as our society finds it increasingly difficult to acquire these sought after luxuries, and we continue to plunge into the financial abyss and political chaos of a third-world nation, we will have both blown the once-in-a-species democratic experiment, and our own ingenious potential to both cure our nation and help heal the planet torn by the industrial age and environmental destruction that is the legacy of a petroleum age.
Petroleum was a blessing and a curse. It allowed a great global brain trust of 7 billion to be created and all the wonderful technology that mass invented, along with 7 billion mouths to feed and feet to shoe, who unfortunately also want 7 billion shiny black beamers we can't afford to build, let alone fuel. Elon Musk of Tesla once said to build 500,000 EV's would require all the lithium the planet can produce. Therefore, we need to invent and deploy another alternative and do so quickly, and while we're at it, utilize simple, affordable, practical technologies and habits like car pooling, mass transit and shopping only for what we really need, while recycling as much as possible, and ensuring our time spent is focused on educating our young so they don't make the same mistakes our generation did. All of these fundamental changes are part of healing America and the planet we all share and whether or not we do it or embrace it, the reality is this Spartan lifestyle IS coming sooner, rather than later, to every community on earth. Get used to it. Get used to the pain of rapid change and a deteriorating social fabric, social services, a rise in unethical, predatory conduct on every front, and a high risk for a rapid implosion and die off of humanity that will be horrific. This IS our future if we do not mend our ways and no amount of technology can save us from wanton, unbridled consumerism, or our universal tendency to ignore harsh realities. A little discipline and practical, effective planning, balanced with our artistic, humanitarian and spiritual agendas is required.
So, curing what ails America is a complex idea that won't be completed by simply electing another corrupt official. You can't cure America by electing a new Mayor, Governor, Congressman or President. You won't accomplish it by switching banks or moving to a community sponsored credit union. You won't do it by simply installing solar on your roof and then pouring yourself a glass of champagne to celebrate the money you'll save on your electric bill or patting yourself on the back for reducing your need for petroleum, nor should you put the money you might save by car pooling into a fund for your annual trip to a Vegas casino where you can blow it in a weekend of heated hedonistic abandon. That sort of wreckless behavior might make sense to a 20 something kid who has never dropped five grand on a crap table, but in today's world that population of wealthy empowered young is also evaporating, and for the rest of us, prudence should guide nearly every action on this high wire act of trying to save humanity from itself. One good mistake, or worse, a continued series of imprudent mistakes, is all that is required to blow our last chance to avert the economic storm already at our door. In fact we don't even need to make a mistake; just continue on as we are doing today and there is little hope of any real, effective change for the better anything in the next 100 - 500 years of humanity's journey on this earth.
Since much of this transformation must embody fundamental changes in how our federal government operates and the QC metrics that need to be installed to change its underlying principles of operation, bloated budgets, imperialistic campaigns and lack of focus on improving the plight of America's middle class, let alone provide much relief for America's impoverished, I suggest that a huge part of "the cure" involves finding and installing politicians who can "Get 'er done". We haven't seen anything like that anywhere in America for several decades, if not for more than a century. Sure, there are a few rare politicians who actually have a reasonably solvent, financially prudent, moral, ethical, perhaps even legal game plan, but they are quickly overwhelmed and marginalized, frustrated or assassinated, or through some other means, ejected from office; a process which leaves only the corrupt or inept left behind. This begs the question, "Would America's recovery be accelerated if a popular driven vote of no confidence by citizens could quickly remove politician's from office?" I don't mean impeaching a President after a billion dollar televised trial that requires Congress to stop dead in its tracks to handle a process that distracts them from more critical resolutions, rather I mean that if 60%, 70%, 80% or more Americans were polled each month, and were found to absolutely PRESS THE REJECT BUTTON, then the President in the Oval Office bowed out on Friday, the V.P. took the hot seat, we held an impromptu election to replace them from viable candidates, and the same rapid, low-cost process was enacted for Congress, State Governors and Legislators, County Supervisors and our Mayors and any other elected official. Put another way; when 80% of your constituents think you're doing a crappy job, odds are you saw that figure rising and the moment it hit 51% the warning shot was fired over your bow. When it hit 70% you had a hole in your boat and probably should have both modified your course and began polling citizens, civic planners, scientists, artists; hippies, bankers, anyone and everyone, on what you might do to improve your performance, and heal your reputation by delivering real solutions to real problems citizens are faced with every single day.
Granted, a rapid change in high level leadership can create chaos; but we already have that today, so there's no big loss there. Granted, Americans can be a fickle group and a popular President today can easily become vilified the moment the food stamp program get slashed, or health insurance rates take a hike. Granted, if our currency goes into a freefall, as many economists predict, and we can't get the oil we need, if we begin experiencing brown outs and black outs like many developing nations endure daily, and if our highways continue to deteriorate just like our system of healthcare, ag and manufacturing sectors, its going to be pretty tough to stay in the Oval Office when such a system of rapid REJECTION is in place. That said, these negative trends are already with us across the board and I don't see either Presidential Candidate really mentally capable of fixing any of them; not one. To assume Hillary will fix things is insane; she's a known felon with absolutely no remorse, and though not convicted in a court of law, every American paying attention knows it. To assume Donald can fix it is to believe a businessman who often bases his profits and retained earnings on bankruptcy laws, and who would alienate a huge Latin American population, gays, women - name the group - is equally insane. Donald might actually be good for America, as he might be able to gut a lot of the bloat in government today, but at the end of the day, would you rather have a surgeon or a wreckless butcher performing your open heart surgery?
The answer, I believe, is to enact a series of laws that require a politician at any level to step aside quickly when a massive, popular vote of NO CONFIDENCE appears; whether its a poll taken weekly, then summarized and enacted upon on a monthly or quarterly basis, or whether we simply employ such a law to regulate Congress, quickly removing Legislators who refuse to impeach any President who acquires a massive level of public wrath measured by frequent, regular, popular vote driven surveys managed by a known, impartial, trusted audit team; i.e. your local librarian staff. Perhaps if the libraries around the nation benefited financially from educating our young and at the same time, acting as a central community gathering place for political and charitable action committees, we'd see some improvements. Frank Zappa said "If you want to get laid, go to college. If you want an education, go to a library." and with the emergence of google, wikipedia and thankfully, the retention of libraries in our culture, there's little or no excuse for Americans not to continue obtaining an education, especially during this period of national crisis.
With the technology that exists TODAY there's little or no excuse for failing to develop the polls, surveys and rapid voting mechanisms that would provide politicians with a "HOW AM I DOING?" answer, and if a rapid REJECT mechanism was built into every political office, things would probably get better much faster than any other method we could devise. Put another way; a drunk surgeon shows up to do your heart surgery and you happen to wake up just as they have begun cutting you open. You realize that person is patently unqualified to both perform the job ahead, let alone care for your life along the way. No matter how many other expert healthcare professionals might be present, wouldn't you vote to "STOP EVERYTHING. EJECT THIS CLOWN AND BRING IN ANOTHER SOBER, QUALIFIED TEAM LEADER?".
Do you really think repairing our fragile, torn, crippled, dying nation is any less critical than your open heart surgery? Do you realize Washington D.C. has one of, if not the highest rate of alcoholism in our country? That's a huge "in-your-face" clue as to why things are as bad as they are in our nation and communities today.
We have TV shows like the Apprentice or Survivor where only the best make it to the final episode. As Donald himself knows all too well, substandard performance gets you "FIRED!". There's no big trial; no long expensive paperwork trail. Its done with a smile, perhaps a pat on the back for those good things you were able to accomplish early on, but if you lack the stamina or ingenuity or prudence to continue making progress, guess what? You're done. Get out. Let someone else take the ball and run from wherever we are towards the goal line.
Some will argue, and rightly so, that in a nation where the top political leader can be rotated like a pair of shoes, the only real power lies in a military Junta of corrupt, power hungry Generals and those who serve them or are "taken out". Well, if you've intimately studied American politics, that's what we have today anyway. Get a clue. Ike warned us about the Industrial Military Complex, wives of military officers and the officers themselves have come forward and revealed the way things work, so its no big surprise to see Obama swearing he's going to reduce deployment, then not long after he's in office, continue America's occupation in foreign lands. Its no big surprise to see every nation on earth condemn Israel for the situation in Palestine, and then see the U.S. is the only nation to veto resolutions that might force Israel to mend its ways. Its no surprise to see Orthodox Jews making overtures with Iran, while the government of Israel and Hillary threaten to bomb Iran into oblivion. It is no surprise to see rising rosters of homeless in America while we spend trillions fighting wars to acquire oil at a time in human history when we've already proven we can get all the energy we need to run entire nations from wind and solar projects; if we actually built them.
And so the question of whether or not a rapid rotation of Presidents or Congressmen, Governors or Mayors might lead to a nation led by military leaders has already been answered; we already are. Perhaps only by putting someone in the Oval Office who understands this problem early on can we expect American streets to look less like battle grounds, and American Cops to look and act less like U.S. troops in Iraq. I may be wrong, but the system in place is patently corrupt, patently defective and completely ineffective. Whatever Democracy and America were SUPPOSED to be 200 plus years later it surely has not become.
The solution? Throw the bums out and do it with less fanfare, less budget and less lost time. Hey, we might even make a weekly TV show out of it. Why do we have to wait forever for a State Of The Union address? When a nation is as messed up as we are today, a weekly 15 - 30 minute BOARD MEETING with American Stakeholders - every citizen - seems more appropriate. Like any board meeting, it should cover Old Business; i.e. programs being implemented and their QC Metrics produced by third party citizen bodies, and available online for download and analysis, and New Business, proposals for new programs, budgets, and a selection of innovative ideas that were gathered from the citizens themselves. A true representative of Americans would embrace their people, their ideas, their audits, and actively seek their opinions of their performance in office. A true representative of Americans wouldn't need a LAW to leave office if they knew their performance sucked and an overwhelming majority of Americans wanted them out; they'd just apologize - quickly - and step aside.
And so the BLUEPRINT to fix America quickly, if not in time to avoid a complete meltdown, probably includes a rapid REJECT/RE-ELECT process. Its like a Jehovah Witness I know explained, as they are looking for good honest souls; "You have to sift through a lot of mud to find a few flakes of gold." Its a lot like the kids I teach in hard-core neighborhoods; you have A students, B students and F students. Very few kids are C or D students for long in a well run class. They are either encouraged and want to learn, and soon rise to the B or A level, or they are not encouraged or lack the desire and in a well run class they fail within a week or two and are asked to go spend their time in some class, some where, that they actually want to participate in. There is little sense in wasting time trying to teach a kid something they really do not wish to learn. The old saying "You can't teach a Pig to sing; you waste your time and just annoy the Pig." applies.
And so the BLUEPRINT also means putting the right students in the right classes, and ensuring ALL STUDENTS understand the value of useful, productive work that requires skills America needs to remain competitive; unfortunately, ballet isn't one of them. If a kid wants to learn to play guitar or piano; great. Let them learn it like I did and study at home after finishing their math and science homework. They'll know it better and learn it faster at les cost than mommy having to spend hundreds or even thousands on piano lessons or instruments for a school marching band. I was also in a marching, orchestra and jazz band and while I have fond memories of it and wish America was so wealthy it could continue to afford these types of electives, those days are long gone. WHEN we have a balanced budget and WHEN we have kids no longer living in cars with their mothers anywhere in America - and I mean ANYWHERE - and WHEN we have cured our nation of our addiction to oil and plastic clothing; WHEN we have enough spare renewable energy to drive desalination plants to irrigate our fields to replace the crops lost due to global warming and ever-widening regions of drought, and WHEN we have desalination plants - 100's if not 1,000's of them - that do not produce dead zones from brine discharge, do not run by burning coal, LNG, petroleum, or require any process that produces nuclear waste; WHEN we have a planet that is not engaged in wars over in ground assets used to drive unsustainable economies and consumer practices, and WHEN we have Judges, Mayors, School Teachers, Governors, Legislators and Presidents all keenly aware that if they screw up a POPULAR VOICE can hand them a Pink Slip in a blink, THEN I will happily support schools with music and painting electives. In the meantime, the basics please; its all we can really afford and any child who really wants to learn to carve wood can take a class online, get a paper route or learn to repair computers in a free class they study online at their local library, then save their pennies to buy their first chisel, paint brush, ballet slippers, guitar or upright piano as the case may be.
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