Anyways, since I didn't know to much about Mr. Butz I did what any self-respecting twenty-something raised on computers would do ... I looked him up on Wikipedia! He served as the Secretary of Agriculture from 1971 - 1976 under Presidents Nixon and Ford and according to Wikipedia had a sometimes bumpy ride. It seems like he liked to run his mouth a little bit and that eventually caught up with him (he resigned a week after making some comments).
There are plenty of people out there that believe the ideas of Mr. Butz, "Get big or get out", "From fencerow to fencerow" farming, and his never ending encouragement for farmers to produce more and more have led to the obesity of America and more. I may not go so far as saying that today ... I'm no scientist ... but, he did make some radical changes in farm policy that are still with us and effecting us today.
I do agree with people who say that the policies of Mr. Butz did lead to the agri-corporations we have today, but for the sake of fairness and to present both sides of the story I will post this quote from an article by Sara Wyant of the "High Plains/Midwest Ag Journal":
For a lot of today's "Baby Boomers," President John F. Kennedy symbolized the hopes and dreams for those lucky enough to live in America in the early 1960s. A few years later, Earl Butz became a cabinet member and delivered a similar sense of promise and optimism for those wanting to make a living off of the land.Do any of you have any thoughts on Mr. Butz or his policies?
During his five years as agriculture secretary, net farm income more than doubled over the previous 10 years and farm exports tripled. He engineered a massive grain sale to the Soviets in 1972 and the Soviets essentially bought up the U.S. grain reserve.