If the weather forecast for the southern Illinois farm of my youth promised three or four cold and clear days in early February, the work forecast promised three or four days of hot and heavy hog butchering.
For nearly a decade, the Packers and Stockyards Administration, the USDA watchdog to ensure competitive, fair livestock markets, has been little more than a sleeping dog, according to a devastating, 36-page report released by USDA’s Office of Inspector General Jan.
When it comes to international bribery and illegal kickbacks, Australia’s inquiry of its state-sanctioned wheat exporter’s, AWB, sleazy dealings with Saddam Hussein-led Iraq is giving an all new meaning to the nation’s clever Down Under nickname.
A decade ago, the most dangerous place to be in Washington was between then-Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich and a television camera.
Under the pile of wrapping paper left from the holidays and newspapers left from 2005 lurks some not-so-fun, 2006 items for the nation, farmers and ranchers.
From the high, clear-view perch of the new year, certain facts and events of 2006 are already visible.
(Author’s note: The following column was first published the week of Christmas 1994. Now, by tradition, it returns.
‘Twas the week before Christmas and all through the House nothing was stirring but Rep. Tom “T-Bone” Maxilla.
Despite overt hints to Santa’s elves that I own enough dress shirts and too many ties for someone who works at home, chances are nearly 100 percent that a swell new shirt and a very understated tie are in my immediate future.
If the dullest knife causes the deepest wounds, the Bush administration should stock up on gauze and duct tape as it takes its traveling trade show to Hong Kong’s World Trade Organization Ministerial Dec.