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31 May, 2008 - The Real Villain Behind Ethanol Attacks (or....The Truth About Ethanol Production)

It is growing larger every day, my friends. I am talking about my frustration over the continuing attacks on ethanol, soy diesel and the entire bio-fuels industry, blaming them solely for the increase in food prices and every other problem in the world. I thought it was a rather unorganized campaign coming from different sources but now, thanks to a presentation on the Senate floor by Iowa Senator Chuck Grassley, a strong supporter of ethanol, I learned that no, this is a well- orchestrated, well-financed campaign.

The Senator said it seems there is a “group think” mentality when it comes to blaming ethanol for everything from high gas prices to global food shortages, global warming and deforestation; but as was recently reported, this anti-ethanol campaign is not a coincidence. It turns out that a $300,000.00 six-month retainer of a Beltway public relations firm is behind the smear campaign and the firm is funded by the Grocery Manufacturers Association. Isn’t that interesting.....the grocery manufacturers that depend on farmers and ranchers for the commodities for them to process, wholesale and retail are now attacking the very people who provide them with the basics of their business. I guess it’s alright for grocery manufacturers to make money, but it’s not alright for farmers to turn a small profit.

So, I am delighted when I find a pro bio-fuels editorial and I found one recently entitled “Reject Backlash Against Bio-Fuels” in the Wisconsin State Journal. Let me share part of it...“In 1995, before the ethanol boom began, American farmers produced 162-million metric tons of corn for food and export. By 2007, ethanol production was taking 62-million metric tons of corn; so the corn left for food and export was....308-million metric tons. That’s right! Three-hundred-eight- million metric tons, 82% more than before the ethanol boom, thanks to higher yields and more land in corn fields. But how can that be true when, according to the backlash against bio-fuels, scarcity of corn caused by America’s diversion of corn into ethanol production is to blame for world food shortages and sky-rocketing prices. It is true because the backlash against bio-fuels is based on myth, misrepresentation and myopia, adding up to a failure of reason.”

Thank you, Wisconsin State Journal, for bringing some sense to the argument with statistics that are real and not based on emotion.

My thoughts on Samuelson Sez.


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