Sherman County eNews #174


  1. [Rufus, Oregon] Agriculture secretary meets with Eastern Oregon farmers

  2. Sherman County Courthouse Surplus Silent Auction, July 12

  3. Free Kids’ Food Preservation Day Camp, July 9-12

  4. Learning to Debate and Public Speak Reaps Life-long Benefits

  5. Owning Our Decisions

  6. A Rare Opportunity: Horseless Carriage Club of America, Portland Group, July 8-11

  7. Links: Things to Think About & Things to Do

America is much more than a geographical fact. It is a political and moral fact — the first community in which men set out in principle to institutionalize freedom, responsible government, and human equality. ~Adlai Stevenson

1. [Rufus, Oregon] Agriculture secretary meets with Eastern Oregon farmers  

American flag2U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue arrived Tuesday in Rufus, Ore., alongside Rep. Greg Walden to meet with local farmers.

U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue said wherever travels across the country farmers want to know the latest about trade uncertainty, labor and the status of the 2018 Farm Bill.

Tuesday’s stop among the rolling wheat fields of Eastern Oregon was no different.

Perdue arrived at Martin Farms in Rufus, Ore., as part of his “Back to our Roots” tour featuring stops around the Pacific Northwest and Alaska.

Flanked by Rep. Greg Walden, R-Ore., he took a brief tour of the farm before arriving back in the shop, where about 50 local farmers and county officials awaited for a meet-and-greet that quickly became an impromptu town hall.

After shaking hands and posing for photographs, Perdue focused his comments first on the administration’s looming trade war with China. Starting July6, the U.S. is set to impose a 25 percent tariff on roughly $50 billion worth of Chinese goods. In turn, China has pledged retaliatory tariffs on 545 American products — especially targeting agriculture.

As one farmer pointed out, cash bids for hard red winter wheat have dropped from around $7 per bushel to $6 per bushel amid the turmoil. Between 85 and 90 percent of Oregon wheat is exported overseas.

“I’m well aware of what percentage of crop here in the Northwest goes overseas,” Perdue said. “We are mindful of that, not only in your wheat crop but in your specialty crops.”

Perdue added that U.S. soybeans have taken a 20 percent hit over the last few weeks. Other farm imports subject to increased Chinese tariffs include everything from fresh fruit to beef and pork.

Perdue said the USDA is working on “some sort of compensatory mitigation strategy” for farmers, but did not offer specifics.

“(Trump) knows that you all are great patriots. He knows that you stand behind him when he calls out China for cheating for years,” Perdue said. “But he also knows the bank is going to need more than patriotism to pay the bills.”

Perdue said he is more optimistic about passing a new Farm Bill before the current package expires Oct. 1. Both the House and Senate have passed their own versions of the bill, and though there are differences between the two, Perdue said he believes they can be resolved.

Sherman County farmers also spoke up for changes in regulations they would like to see, including provisions in the National Organic Program requiring organic farmers to comply with all state and local weed ordinances.

That request stems from an incident last year between Azure Farms, a 2,000-acre organic operation near Moro, Ore., and neighboring wheat farms. Growers had complained for years about weeds blowing into their fields from Azure Farms, prompting the county to intervene.

Alan von Borstel, a wheat farmer near Grass Valley, Ore., and vice president of the Oregon Wheat Growers League, asked Perdue about the USDA Transition Incentives Program, which is designed to help get new farmers started while also taking land out of the Conservation Reserve Program, or CRP, and putting it back into production… … …

See the rest of the story here:

2. Sherman County Courthouse Surplus Silent Auction, July 12

ShermanCoLogoSherman County Courthouse Surplus Silent Auction

July 12, 2018 | Starts: 8:00 a.m. | Ends: 9:00 a.m. | Location: Courthouse | 500 Court Street | Moro, OR 97039. Make your bid. Numerous office and building-related items utilized by Sherman County departments that are no longer needed:

-executive, task, and other miscellaneous chairs

-desks of varying configurations

-conference and miscellaneous tables

-wood cabinets

-filing cabinets

-antique metal storage unit

-large mailbox/ballot box

-used doors

-toilet/sink unit from former holding cell

-TV/monitors and used copier.

Items must be removed by 12 p.m. on day of sale.

3. Free Kids’ Food Preservation Day Camp, July 9-12

food.raspberriesFree “Put It Up!” kids’ food preservation day camp, Monday, July 9 through Thursday, July 12, 9am to noon. Kids 8 and up are welcome! Learn how to can, jam, freeze, dry, pickle and make jerky. Call the Extension Office 541-565-3230 to sign your kids up for one or more days.  Spaces are limited so call soon. 

4. Learning to Debate and Public Speak Reaps Life-long Benefits

The Benefits of Learning to Debate

-Develop excellent oral and written communication skills.

-Develop excellent critical thinking skills.

-Develop effective tools for research, organization and presentation.

-Develop strategies to overcome fears of public speaking.

-Discover the confidence and desire to participate in all academic classes.

Students who participate in debate programs will discover and develop the following skills:

-Confidence – Belief in themselves and their abilities, and the desire to participate in all classes.

-Curiosity – The passion of discovery through effective tools for research, organization and presentation.

-Critical Thinking – How to explore the world through the lens of an inquisitive mind

-Communication – Oral & written skills and strategies for lively yet respectful discussions & disagreements.

-Control – Eliminate the fears of public speaking.

-Creativity – The desire to explore, create and invent.

-Camaraderie – Meet like-minded peers at tournaments and build healthy bonds of competition.

-Leadership – Self-motivation and the ability to delegate assignments and manage peers.

~See more here:

5. Owning Our Decisions

What happens when part of you wants to do one thing and part wants to do another? Let’s look at this kind of conflict.

When two desires of similar power come into conflict, a great deal of inner turmoil and stress can result. Here is an example from a young parent, who wrote, “I want to go back to night school and get my degree, but I also want to spend as much time as possible with my kids while they’re little. I just don’t know what to do.”

Now, it won’t help if someone else solves this problem. That is putting accountability onto someone else’s shoulders. For a personal sense of efficacy and personal power, this individual needs to work this out. This person needs to “own” and be accountable for whatever decision is made. In the same way, organizations mulling over which direction to take for the future need to “own” both the decision-making process as well as be accountable for the decisions actually being made.

Also, there is something equally important. Whatever this parent decides, the commitment needs to be made as fully as possible, without regrets, for as long as it takes. The decision needs to be owned. If it is to go to school, causing guilt and the wish to be home the whole time, personal misery sets in and the kids will pick up on it. If the decision is to stay home until the kids are older, and the decision is resented and seen as a “have-to,” anger and bitterness will find their way to the surface one way or another. In the same manner, organizations that don’t fully commit to the decisions being made find themselves stuck, going nowhere, and totally frustrated with a process that doesn’t seem to be working.

Sometimes professional help is needed to sort out these dilemmas, because there are challenges with the apparent choices. Just make sure it’s the kind that helps uncover blind spots and old beliefs that keep us stuck, and empowers all of us to make and own our decisions. ~The Pacific Institute

6. A Rare Opportunity: Horseless Carriage Club of America, Portland Group, July 8-11

Car 2The Portland Regional Horseless Carriage Group will gather in John Day, Oregon, on The Journey Through Time Scenic Byway, July 8-11 for their annual tour. This is a rare opportunity for horseless carriage fans and photographers in a remarkable combination of vintage vehicles and sites that played significant roles in the economic and cultural development in some of Oregon’s most beautiful landscapes.

For more information on the Horseless Carriage Club of America, Portland Group, see Travelers along the Journey Through Time Scenic Byway and in the John Day region July 8-12 are urged to be mindful of these slow-going vehicles with drivers in vintage attire.

7. Links: Things to Think About & Things to Do

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