John's World Reaction
Nov 03, 2008
Editor's Note: The "John's World" commentary from this past weekend (November 1-2, 2008) drew lots of response. Here is the commentary in its entirety, followed by viewer reaction:
This week's corrected USDA crop report solidifies my opinion of the bureaucratic under-performer that is the National Agricultural Statistics Service. Let me state first and foremost I do not accuse them of bias or corruption, just simple straightforward ineptitude.
The gathering and analysis of data has advanced breathtakingly in every other industry and even other government departments, but the NASS still provides the same products with the same accuracy and speed as they did ten years ago...and twenty...and thirty.
Like union employees working to contract, reports emerge no faster than the law establishing them decades ago requires. Still as the NASS budget expands and reports stay the same, America receives a decreasing return on their tax dollars compared to the wealth of timely information increasingly flowing from say, the Departments of Labor and Commerce.
While the crop reports, as we found this week are Exhibit "A" of this official attitude, the Census of Agriculture is another lackluster output that reinforces much that is wrong with government.
Modern information firms could, I believe, produce an annual census and report it in days. And crop reports should be weekly and done overnight. To those who protest this is impossible, let's find out. Put those reports out for bid to data processors and let traders evaluate the results. And let taxpayers finally get some value for their information dollars.
That's my opinion...as always, we'd like to hear what you think.
My wife & I resent your cheap shot at Union members that you made on 11-02-08. We are proud of our UAW membership! We go to work every day on time & proudly do our jobs. You did a disservice to working people by your one sided wrong statement! We do watch your show every Sunday at 5:am.
Steve & Celia Scheiderer
Johns daring political commentary is the type of plain, informed talk we need on matters of public policy. It's a shame John is not in Congress, his wealth and breadth of knowledge form a foundation from which this courage of conviction could actually do some good.
Forest Lake, Minnesota