Wednesday, June 04, 2008

animals and gas (not what you think)

Last year (some regular readers may recall) Mrs. Curley had the dubious distinction of hitting a squirrel, a dove, and a turtle driving to and from Mass one day. Whenever driving skill discussions come up between Mrs. Curley and myself, I always bring up this trifecta and ask, "Was that turtle moving too fast for you to avoid?".

Well those pleasant days are over. I didn't have a trifecta, but I did hit a bird and a turtle this morning on the way to Mass.


We, of course, having a large 12-passenger van, and living 20-30 miles from EVERY thing, suffer from the high price of gas at least as much as everyone else. Yet, in my reading and thinking over this the past few weeks, I am starting to be convinced high gas prices may be good in the long run.

Anecdotal evidence: Last week Mrs. Curley bought local organic milk for within 10% of the same price as name brand milk shipped from Tennessee. In the past the difference has been much greater.

Regional economies are more likely to (re)-form if transregional, transcontinental, and international transportation becomes more cost prohibitive. Short-term, we may suffer a bit, but long-term this could be good for our culture, our community and our souls.

There are better discussions than my humble effort elsewhere on the Internet. Take a look and think about it.

Oremus pro invicem!


TS said...

Your comments about gas reminded me of this.

It's as if the world is suddenly getting much richer, which is a good thing. Oil is pricey because demand is increasing in China & India. And now fertilizer is pricey because people who were on 3rd world diets are moving up to 1st world diets.

Jim Curley said...

Between our pigs and chickens, I think we will have enough manure-but I wonder if this why my neighbor put in a lot more soy than corn also.

Jim Curley said...

This just in: Talked to a neighbor yesterday-its not just the cost of fertilizer. Soy is going for record prices-better profit than corn-even at its elevated level.

TS said...

I mentioned what you said to a friend who follows these things, and for what it's worth here are his comments:

Soy sells for alot more (almost 3 times more), but if you corn yields are good, you can grow 3 times the corn vs Soy for the same acre. Of course, you've got to harvest move and sell 3 times the product, so those costs figure too.

I'm not sure, but I think Soy plants are less subject to weather damage but more subject to bio-pests than corn -- corn is more subject to weather conditions but with the selective seeds they've got now most of the pests are under control.

They've both got trade-offs -- its good for farmers because they can
grow either and still make a good profit. Apparently there's a pretty big export market for both corn and soybeans.

It seems like it has to be a good time to be a farmer, given the whole ethanol project, as well as increasing demand worldwide for ag products.