Friday, May 18, 2018

Dusty Johnson Begs To Differ

       Johnson, running in the coming primary for the Republican nomination to U.S. Congress,
Not Exactly Stopping Traffic
got a bit defensive with me in last Friday's Rapid City Journal. 
His op-ed piece claims that I didn't have all the facts about his devotion to farmers when I called attention to his rhetorical genuflection towards President Trump. On his facebook page, Johnson says he "looks forward to working with Trump" who "has proven to be an effective chief executive."  I'm not sure what facts he's calling into question, but a direct quote like that makes it pretty clear that Johnson will be an unquestioning loyalist to Trump.  My piece chided Johnson for his fealty to a chief exec who's tax bill just added $2 trillion to the national debt, according to the Congressional Budget Office.  Interest rates are already pushing higher as the government borrows, borrows, and keeps borrowing, to the tune of 84% more money this year than lastJohnson seems oblivious. The compelling question is, how can this "passionate" advocate for farmers believe that rising farm interest rates make Trump the "effective" chief exec that Johnson looks forward to working with?  More hypocritically, Johnson in his recent tv ads decries the huge amount of debt that will be passed on to his kids, yet continues to fawn over the president who touched off the latest government borrowing binge.  Consistency has yielded to expediency in the Johnson campaign.                                                                                                             Then there's the matter of trade.  Johnson has made some pro forma utterances about not using farmers as pawns, but they don't sound like much resistance to Trump's potentially harmful trade policies.  He offers a couple of duh-inspiring quotes  that are supposed to show his independence from Trump on trade issues.  First he says "Market access is incredibly important to the South Dakota . . . agricultural economy."  Next he says "I would ask the president to make sure we keep those markets open."  Come again?  He would "ask" the president?  Would there be a "pretty please" attached to the request by this self-styled "passionate" advocate for South Dakota's farmers?
     These rhetorical flourishes notwithstanding, some specifics need to be addressed.  Soybean prices last week fell below $10/bushel, nearly 10% below their peak last March, when all the Trump trade-war rhetoric started heating up. Analysts at the  Farm Futures site yesterday called that "a fresh reminder of China's diminished soybean purchases over the past several weeks."  So where's candidate Johnson's pushback?  Tell it to the soybean farmers. So far I don't see much of a fighter for South Dakota's ag interests.
     And forgetting about soybeans for a minute, there's the matter of Trump administration policy on the ethanol mandate, aka the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS), a major matter for corn producers.  Trump's EPA chief Scott Pruit has been "chipping away" at RFS, which has irked Iowa GOP Senator Chuck Grassley, who bluntly told Pruitt last week that if the EPA chief didn't reverse course, he, Grassley, would "be calling for Pruitt to resign."  Trump's front man at EPA has been a dud as far as many corn producers are concerned, and Grassley is rightly outraged.
     So now we've got farmers facing major new national debt, rising interest rates, price-crippling trade disputes and an ethanol-resistant EPA.   If all  this makes Trump the "effective chief executive" that Johnson venerates, Dusty can have him.   


  1. A case could be made that sympathy should be offered to Republican voters as they face a House of Representative primary betwixt Tweedledee, Tweedledum and the Nitwit. However, that circumstance must needs take into account that those who make the bed are perforce compelled to sleep in same.

  2. Curmudgeon has it pretty much right. All of the Pubs candidates are all in on the President and each one tries to out-conservative the other. But when did it become conservative to keep cutting taxes and keep on spending? oh yeah, under their hero, Ronald Reagan.

    President George H. W. Bush had it right, i.e. that is "voodoo economics". But it seems that each succeeding Republican officeholder is willing to take it another step forward or I guess I should say backward.

    Add to that, in this go round, two of the House candidates and one gubernatorial candidate support a Muslim registry, and yet will be swearing to uphold the Constitution of the United States. I am pretty sure that a Muslim registry would be and is unconstitutional.

  3. Curious that Johnson takes you seriously. Howdy Doody Dusty Johnson may be a shoo-in for the earth hater nomination but principled conservatives running outside the GOP will be his undoing in November leaving Tim Bjorkman to reap the whirlwind.

    1. I doubt that I'm as influential as he thinks, but his response did give him some face time, so I suppose it had some value for his campaign.

    2. Belike Mr. Johnson sees you as his personal substitute for Ms. Pelosi. You could end up as the Fox & Friends nemesis of the day.

  4. U.S. President Donald Trump on Wednesday signaled a new direction in U.S. and China's trade talks, saying the current track appeared "too hard to get done" and that any possible deal needed "a different structure."

    "Now, I have to tell you, it's an unbelievably complex subject." "Nobody knew health care could be so complicated."DJ Trump.

    "I'm still waiting for Fox and Friends to tell me what to do" not far from the truth by imaginary DJ Trump. Will Dusty get his information from the same trusted source?