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I sat in my warm and cozy house situated on a hill not too far from Court Square in West Plains on Wednesday morning, curled up under a blanket with my dogs as I worked from home, all but oblivious to the effects of the 10 or so inches of heavy snow that had fallen overnight. more
The 2023 Missouri Legislative Session is underway and legislators have been back in Jefferson City since January 4. Every year brings a new opportunity to address items that matter to our members and hardworking Missourians, and we look forward to developing solutions in the coming months.   more
Without fail, every time I put my brand new Farm Bureau calendar up on the wall, I get a few butterflies in my stomach. With every page turn comes a set of experiences, covering everything incredibly familiar and routine to moments that come completely out of left field. While starting a new year might bring about some jitters, I try to see every page as a challenge to make both my life and the lives of those around me better at every opportunity. more
Happy New Year! With 2022 in the rearview mirror, it’s time for a new Congress to begin — one that can finally start addressing the multitude of crises our country faces. House Republicans will immediately get to work on reversing the damage caused by the left. We’ll fight tooth and nail to get America back on the right track — regardless of the resistance we will face from the Chuck Schumer-led Senate and Biden-controlled White House. more
Even before the whomp-whomp sound of rotor blades reaches here, folks seem to know there's a helicopter coming. Traffic and news helicopters seldom bother with rural areas like this, and we don't exactly attract Hollywood types or business moguls with the resources to pilot themselves. So a helicopter landing isn't an everyday occurrence. Who wouldn't want to watch? more
In a state where agriculture is the No. 1 industry, Missouri can be a powerful leader in making sure every Missourian is food secure. At its core, food security means no child goes to bed hungry and no adult must choose between buying needed medicine and putting food on the family table. more
“When the age of the Vikings came to a close, they must have sensed it. Probably, they gathered together one evening, slapped each other on the back and said, ‘Hey, good job.’” —Jack Handey, “Deep Thoughts” from “Saturday Night Live” (circa early ‘90s) more
There’s nowhere I’d rather live than rural Missouri. In the wintertime, we have crisp morning air, beautiful sunrises and calm, serene views. Getting out in the cold to check and feed our cattle, I feel like none of the craziness in the rest of the world matters and I have everything I need. more
The holidays are a special time in southern Missouri, and nothing makes me happier than Christmas in the Ozarks. more
Each December, over 1,200 farmers and ranchers from across Missouri gather at the Lake of the Ozarks to reconnect with old friends, learn from national experts and debate policy positions for the coming year. The 2022 Missouri Farm Bureau Annual Meeting will be the 108th of its kind, a tradition unrivaled for its longevity and breadth. more
For Thanksgiving this year, many Americans traveled to be with family and enjoy a feast. It truly is one of our country’s best holidays, where we get to spend cherished time with family and give thanks for the many blessings we enjoy. But sadly, thanks to the decisions made under one-party Democrat rule over the last two years, this year’s celebration will be significantly more expensive compared to previous years. That’s a cruel consequence of Washington Democrats’ trillion-dollar spending spree, which ignited and continues to fuel the highest increase in the cost-of-living in 40 years. more
As we approach the holiday season, everyone knows how much damage inflation has done to Americans’ pocketbooks and retirement accounts. We have all been fretting about higher costs at both Thanksgiving and Christmas over the next five weeks. From pie crusts to presents, costs are skyrocketing. more
With Veterans Day freshly behind us, I catch myself reflecting on its significance. It occurs to me that at some point in my adult life, Veterans Day transitioned from a day in which I reflect on the lives and service of my grandfather and his peers in WWII, and my parents' generation as impacted by Vietnam. more
Rural Missourians have faced numerous challenges that have created a precarious economic reality in communities, including family farmers struggling with volatile markets, the encroachment of corporate-owned factory farms, and job displacement as factories close and move overseas. more
It’s easy to get overwhelmed by the hectic nature of our everyday lives. Toting kids to and from school, activities at all hours, putting in a solid day’s work and getting meals on the table often means that from the moment your eyes open to the time they close, it’s hard to process anything else. Yet the world is full of other problems, including ongoing problems with COVID-19, Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and inflation hitting our grocery and gas pump bills. It’s all just exhausting, and this is only a tiny sample of our daily concerns.  more
There was a period in the late ‘60s when the Beach Boys, desperate for a hipper identity, reportedly considered shortening their name to “Beach.” more
Summer temperatures are finally starting to taper off and combines are rolling across Missouri’s fields. From corn and soybeans to rice and cotton, this harvest will mark the end of an extremely turbulent growing season for farmers. more
A few months ago, I wrote about the ridiculous overreach of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), which is rolling out a plan to force companies to collect and publish information about their “climate-related risks.” The new rule could force farmers and ranchers to keep track of every bit of carbon used to produce anything they grow or raise — an impossible task. more
I have been sitting on this column for three weeks. The beginning of the school year is always a busy time, not just here at the Quill, but at home, too. more
On Tuesday, I was one of more than 20% of Howell county who participated in a fundamental act that defines us as Americans: I voted. It is a point of patriotic pride for me that I can say I have … more
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