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Friday, February 24, 2017
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Bob Kraft: FDA impacts our beef and beer
CARMEL – As Americans we have morphed our right to free speech into a national inclination to grumble about our government and the ineptitude of bureaucrats who are charged with regulating industries that they know nothing about. Rarely do we agree, at least out loud, with any government action that affects us directly. But that is exactly what consumers should be doing in the wake of a recent Food and Drug Administration decision to change a proposed rule that addressed the packaging, processing and handling requirements for any human food by-products consumed by animals. Significantly, the proposed rule would have placed severe restrictions on the use of leftover grain by brewers and distillers as animal feed.
Bob Kraft: Dr. Borlaug, the man who fed the world
CARMEL - In late March most of the United States pretty much ignored the 100th anniversary of the birth of Norman Borlaug, the man most responsible for the current phenomenon of engineered food in the world’s diet. The one notable exception to the general indifference to Borlaug’s centennial was that of his native state of Iowa, which used the occasion to enshrine him as one of that state’s two honorees in the National Statuary Hall in the U. S. Capitol. To do so, Iowa had to remove the statue of James Harlan, a college president, U.S. senator and secretary of the interior in the Andrew Johnson administration. (For the record, Indiana’s two honorees are Civil War Gov. Oliver P. Morton and Civil War general and Ben Hur author Lew Wallace). Dr. Norman Borlaug, born and raised on an Iowa farm, was a plant scientist and innovator who is widely known as the father of the Green Revolution.
Robert Kraft: Indiana and industrial hemp
CARMEL - A few years ago I became convinced that industrial hemp was inappropriately banned because of its reprobate cousin marijuana and that its legalization represented a growth opportunity for Indiana agriculture. Since my retirement from Indiana Farm Bureau in October, I have assumed a greater level of involvement in the effort to legalize industrial hemp’s production in Indiana. What is industrial hemp? The bill currently being considered by the legislature (SB 357) defines industrial hemp as a variety of the cannabis sativa plant that contains less than 0.3% tetrarahydrocannabinol (THC) concentration. THC is the chemical that induces the drug effect of marijuana where its concentration levels generally range between 5% and 20%, although higher concentrations occasionally occur.
Bob Kraft: Farm bill proves to be a difficult compromise
CARMEL – On Friday this week, President Obama will travel to the campus of Michigan State University to sign a bill titled the Agricultural Act of 2014 but almost universally known as the 2014 Farm Bill. Both of these titles are misleading because they imply the bill deals primarily, if not exclusively, with farming or agriculture. While it’s true that the bill is the single most important piece of federal legislation addressing agriculture, it is significantly more than that. The final bill took over two years of congressional negotiations and left both liberals and conservatives frustrated that the eventual compromise failed to address some of their primary concerns. The most expensive, and therefore most confrontational, among the bill’s dozen titles is that entitled simply “Nutrition.”
Bob Kraft: Obama ignored agriculture in SOTU
INDIANAPOLIS - My first reaction to President Barak Obama’s State of the Union address Tuesday evening was to wonder why agriculture received no mention whatsoever. With our dysfunctional Congress congratulating itself on finally reaching a compromise on a farm bill earlier in the day, it seems the President could have used that as a timely example of the bipartisan cooperation he has been demanding. But no, I heard no mention of it whatsoever. Since my mind wandered occasionally during the evening, I thought I may have missed at least a passing reference to ag, so I downloaded a copy of the speech and ran a word search. Neither “farm” nor “agriculture” made it into an hour long discourse by our nation’s chief executive on the state of our union.
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White House asked FBI to discredit Kremlin/Trump campaign story
"We didn't try to knock the story down. We asked them to tell the truth.”
- Presidential press secretary
reacting to reports from CNN and Fox News that White House chief of staff
asked a top FBI official to dispute media reports that
campaign advisers were in frequent touch with Russian intelligence agents during the 2016 election. Such a request from the White House is a violation of procedures that limit communications with the FBI on pending investigations, both Fox and CNN reported. FBI Director
rejected the request for the FBI to comment on the stories, according to sources, because the alleged communications between Trump associates and Russians known to U.S. intelligence are the subject of an ongoing investigation.
Congress has authority to review Trump tax returns. It should
Harvard Prof. Mihir Desai and Edward Kleinbard, a former chief of staff of the congressional Joint Committee on Taxation, write in the
that Congress has the authority via the federal tax code to review President Trump’s tax returns. You can read their article by
. Trump broke modern precedent by being the first presidential candidate in modern times to refuse to release his taxes.
columnist David Ignatius writes today, "We may be missing the forest for the trees in the Russia story: The Kremlin's attempt to meddle in the 2016 U.S. presidential election is part of a much bigger tale of Russian covert action — in which Donald Trump's campaign was perhaps a tool, witting or unwitting." With Kremlin interference in the 2016 presidential election, a development some in Congress have called an “act of war,” and with reports that the Kremlin and senior Trump campaign officials were in consistent contact, which was a story CNN and Fox News report on today, Members of the Indiana Congressional delegation should join a call for a review of the President’s tax returns. There is too much at stake and too much we don’t know.
- Brian A. Howey, publisher
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WTHR-TV: Syrian refugees come to Indiana
WTHR-TV's Mary Milz talks to a Syrian refugee family who just arrived in Indiana.
President Trump's Feb. 16 Press Conference
Watch the latest video at
President Trump's Feb. 16, 2017 White House press conference via Fox News.
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Should Donald Trump release recent tax returns, like every major party nominee has done over the past 40 years?
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