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Farmers' Association

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The Washtenaw Farmers' Asssociation met in the court house yesterday. There were forty-aine delegates present, representing eleven oatrons' lodges, three granges, two farmers' clubs, and one individual member. An interesting meeting was held. The afternoon was largely taken up with a discussion of the present agricultural depression and its remedies. George E. Peters, of Scio, by request, addressed the meeting. He claimed that, barring calamities, prices are controlled by law. This country has always produced a surplus. The production of wheat in the world is 2,000,000,000 bushels a year. A man is mistaken who thinks there is an over production of wheat. There are twenty-five countries with 000,000,000 people using wheat. This year the United States is 200 million short. Our crops only last from one erop to the next. Mr. Peters then branched out iuto a history of financial legislation. ín i86i;'the rebellion caused an_ almost unlímited amount of money necessary to the government. They issued $60,000,000 bank notes. Then they issued $400,000,000 partial legal tender greenbacks. Then the national bank act was passed. He referred to the money deposited in the national banks, which they have had the use of without paying any interest. Afterwards the bankers wanted to get rid of the greenback. The currency was contracted. In 1869, they passed a funding act, allowing the bonds to be issued, payable in coin. In 1883; they demonetized silver by making all the bonds. payable in gold. The number of dollers in circulation fixes the price of all farm producís. The trouble in this country is usury or interest. He referred to a remarle made to him by a money loaner that he would rather have a $5,000 mortgage on a $ 10,000 farm than own the farm. The man who owned the farm hadto pay the interest,the taxes and make the improvements, and he thought he would make the most by holding the mortgage. No man should loan his money at a greater rate of interest than the national inrease of wealth. He seemed to hink the rate ought lo be two per ent. Cyrus G. Starks, of Webster, beieved all the talk about currency ot, from one end to the other. The reat government never came though hroes of great rebellion without making many and great mistakes. ;t is true, the capitalists weighed down the poor man. This has ever been the history of the world. How many of us farmers, if we could, would not combine and put the price of wheat at, one dollar and a half a bushel. It is a great deal better to keep out of debt than go to the corner grocery and teil how hard we are oppressed. There is legislation that we want. We want an even chance - nothing more. We ask no favors. We have allowed politicians to hoodwink us. We like to talk, but when we come to act our good intentions fail. What legislation do we want ? Not class legislation, but just legislation. It is said the hoof of the sheep is golden; we might go farther, the hoof of the cow has been very valuable. I would like to see this association come out and denounce the adulteration of butter. I do not say put a tax on oleomargarine, but simply color it pink. Simply let it stand )n its merits. I say apply the same aw to all foods. Our lard should not be sold in competition with cotton seed lard. In addition to a pure food bill, we want enacted a law which will protect us from coming into competition with Armour and any other dealer in lump-jawed cattle. We want to see Michigan take such a stand in the liquor question as will be a credit to the great state of Michigan. H. D. Platt read a long extract from the report of the committee of the state grange showing an increased production of wheat in foreign countries and claiming that as all the available land in this country was now taken and the cities were increasing while the country population was not, the relief would come in greater home consumption. We needed a law to prevent adulteration of food. Men have a right to cheap food, but we have a right to know what cheap food is made of. If it be cotton seed lard it should be branded cotton seéd lard. If a man wants to buyoleomargarine let him buy it, but let him know it is not butter. Andrew Campbell said heretofore farmers didn't care to ask for legislation. The fact that the farmers have come up against something and are led to enquire about it cannot fail to lead to good results, ís the fault in the calling of the man? Even now with all the disadvantages of farming there is here and the-re a. man who makes a success of it. We take it for granted that state of agriculturol depression exists. The fictitious value of money has decreased. We must expect purchasng power of money to iücrease and that we must sell our products for less. I remember when I was a boy when we sat around our little candle and one fire and took only one news:aper, we didn't think it such hard times. The real test of a man's character is more how he uses his money than how he makes ït. vou jet out of land now about what you ut on it. In the matter of legislaion, very much has not been done rom the farmer's standpoint. We ïave asked for nothing and we ïaven't got much. The hope lies more and more that we will emphasize the man. behind the calling, instead of the calling. There is nothng that compels any man to be a armer, If he don 't like it he should get out of it. It is an honorable calling. The calling had led to a sort of isolation. No man can ever jive an intelligent opinión looking only from his own standpoint. If we could have legislation to suit us we would do the very thing we are finding fault with. The individual effort of the man and the help or hindrance of legislation are the two points to consider. E. A. Nordman, of Lima, wanted to cali attention to the monetary question. It is said that this nation adds one million of dollars to its wealth every day. Are we as apeople better off? If this million nas been accumulated by a few men, do they use that wealth for the interest of the whole people of the United States? John E. Hall, of Dexter, thought the meeting ought to agree on what was pulling them down the hardest. Robt. Campbell, of Augusta, in speaking if the two per cent loan asked for from the government. Of course most of us are paying interest, and two per cent will be less to pay. We have too many officeholders in the government now. If you carry out that measure, will it be loaned farmers alone ? If so, is not it class legislation? Who is going to look up title, and security? If shrewd men who now invest capital get left, would it be a great while before Uncle Sam had more money on his hands than he knew what to do whh? James Doyle, of York, wanted to ask if an army of officeholders is nade necessary by a two per cent ioan act, whether it could ever be potten rid of ? Mr. Starks introduced the following: Resolved, that our executive committee be authorized to voice the sentiments of this association by asking our legislature to pass an equitable food bilí, a fair mortgage tax law and a law to restrain intemperance. This was referred to the executive committee. E. A. Nordman offered the following resolution: Resolved, that we demand of the present legislature that they so revise the present tax law so that every species of property, real, personal, mixed, lands, bonds, stocks, moneys and minerals, be made to bear its due proportion of the public burdens in order to relieve the owners of real estáte from the unjust taxation to which they are now subjected. Referred to the executive committee. On motion of H. D. Platt, the president of the Senate was asked to put Senator George B. Horton on the judiciary committee. Considerable discussion was had over holding an institute. Chelsea had some strong friends. Others wanted it held at Ann Arbor. It was decided to leave it to the executive committee. After settling a few other minor motions, the association adjourned.