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Nation wising up on corn ethanol
Greenwood Commonwealth ^ | 04/15/10

Posted on 04/17/2010 6:51:56 AM PDT by TigerLikesRooster

Nation wising up on corn ethanol

Published: Thursday, April 15, 2010 8:28 AM CDT

Corn-based ethanol is losing some of its luster, and that is a good thing for the average American, if not the corn grower.

For the past 30 years, ethanol has had powerful advocates in the nation’s capital, including senators and congressmen from corn-producing states from both political parties. The fact that the Iowa presidential primary comes so early hasn’t hurt the corn growers either.

But billions of dollars in tax credits for ethanol companies expire at the end of this year, and a fight appears to be brewing over whether they’ll be renewed.

Some credits probably will be renewed, but the Associated Press reports there’s evidence that Congress is weary of giving money to an industry that critics say should be able to stand on its own after getting its start in the early 1980s.

The corn-based ethanol industry still has its powerful advocates, but there also is now an organized campaign by anti-ethanol advocates to discredit the industry.

A growing patchwork of food companies, livestock producers, environmental groups and oil companies have spent millions of dollars in the last few years framing ethanol’s success as “food vs. fuel.” They argue that the increase in production of corn and its diversion for ethanol is making animal feed more expensive, raising prices at the grocery store and tearing up the land.

There are other reasons to be opposed to corn-based ethanol as well.

(Excerpt) Read more at gwcommonwealth.com ...


TOPICS: Business/Economy; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: biofuels; boondoggle; corn; energy; ethanol; flimflamman; subsidies; subsidiesforfarmers; subsidy

1 posted on 04/17/2010 6:51:56 AM PDT by TigerLikesRooster
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To: TigerLikesRooster; PAR35; AndyJackson; Thane_Banquo; nicksaunt; MadLibDisease; happygrl; ...

P!


2 posted on 04/17/2010 6:52:26 AM PDT by TigerLikesRooster (The way to crush the bourgeois is to grind them between the millstones of taxation and inflation)
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To: TigerLikesRooster; All
Corn Growers Chat
3 posted on 04/17/2010 6:54:45 AM PDT by musicman (Until I see the REAL Long Form Vault BC, he's just "PRES__ENT" Obama = Without "ID")
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To: musicman

On the bright side, we can drink from fuel tank of a car if our food runs out. Saves the trouble of grocery shopping.:-)


4 posted on 04/17/2010 6:56:47 AM PDT by TigerLikesRooster (The way to crush the bourgeois is to grind them between the millstones of taxation and inflation)
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To: TigerLikesRooster

As far as I am concerned mandatory ethanol blends are nothing more than hidden taxes. Ethanol decreases fuel economy, you buy more fuel, the government gets more tax revenue on all levels. It’s a no brainer for them to spin the environmental benefits when all it really is is a tax increase.


5 posted on 04/17/2010 6:57:24 AM PDT by 2right
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To: TigerLikesRooster

Alcohol has only two thirds the BTUs of gasoline. Therefore whatever is added to gas lowers your mileage and raises the price.


6 posted on 04/17/2010 7:01:19 AM PDT by donhunt (Obama care should begin with doctors putting Nancy Pelosi's tongue in a splint.)
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To: donhunt

I think you have put your finger on one of ethanol’s selling points!


7 posted on 04/17/2010 7:03:47 AM PDT by doberville
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To: TigerLikesRooster
Muttley Laugh
8 posted on 04/17/2010 7:12:49 AM PDT by musicman (Until I see the REAL Long Form Vault BC, he's just "PRES__ENT" Obama = Without "ID")
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To: musicman

Great oil company sponsored propaganda this morning


9 posted on 04/17/2010 7:21:39 AM PDT by sitkaspruce
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To: donhunt
Alcohol has only two thirds the BTUs of gasoline.

There were a few guys running alcohol cars at the local drag strip back in the days when I cared about all things automotive, and it took a while for me to realize that there was such a disparity in BTUs. The alky burners compensated by dumping a lot more fuel down the injectors and generally doing things a bit different than the rest of us.

(I believe the air-to-fuel ratio was something like 6:1 compared to around 13:1 for an equivalent engine using the high-octane (leaded) gasoline of the day. Why I recall that, I don't know... but all things even out, because I can't remember what I had for breakfast yesterday.)

Mr. niteowl77

10 posted on 04/17/2010 7:26:54 AM PDT by niteowl77 (You wanted him, and now you have got him. I say, "Good day to you," America.)
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To: donhunt

Posts 5&6 have correct information on ethanol. Making it is more costly than what it can be sold as fuel, so government subsidies (your tax money) keep the plants in business. Corn prices can be kept up in other, less costly ways.


11 posted on 04/17/2010 7:30:29 AM PDT by RicocheT
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To: donhunt
“Alcohol has only two thirds the BTUs of gasoline. Therefore whatever is added to gas lowers your mileage and raises the price.”

El Correct”o! It takes a energy ratio of about 1.5 hydrocarbon units to produce 1.0 ethanol units. And, to further reduce ethanol's efficiency, it gets about 2/3 the mileage as gasoline. Further more, our government (code, our tax dollars) subsidize ethanol to the tune 50 cents per gallon at the pump. Further, further, our government subsidizes auto companies to the tune of $1,000 per vehicle built with flex-fuel capability. Then (I'm getting tired) there's the huge amount of water required to produce ethanol, which is pumping down the ogallala aquifer to grow/produce a non-value added product. Then, this contaminated waste water is released into our river system, eventually finding it's way to the Gulf of Mexico creating dead zones, killing fish and other water life (where's an environmentalist when you really need one?) Lastly, this whole ethanol experiment is a prime example of what goes wrong when the government get’s involved in creating false economics. The ethanol program will never be eliminated because neither political party wants to risk losing the votes of the grain growing states. And so it goes....

12 posted on 04/17/2010 7:31:12 AM PDT by snoringbear (Government is the Pimp,)
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To: donhunt
Alcohol has only two thirds the BTUs of gasoline. Therefore whatever is added to gas lowers your mileage and raises the price.
Alcohol is also a very poor substitute for pertoleum based aviation fuel.
It's just another reason why, in the long run, we need to build more electrically powered high-speed rail to displace inefficient "short hop" air travel.

And by building more nuclear power plants, we can escape the food vs fuel tradeoff.

13 posted on 04/17/2010 7:31:28 AM PDT by Willie Green
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To: Willie Green
I would have to walk or drive 30 miles to catch a train or even farther for a planned high speed rail. I need my roads fixed so why are they ignoring my roads and making them worse so city people can ride in a fancy train at my expense?
14 posted on 04/17/2010 7:39:47 AM PDT by mountainlion (concerned conservative.)
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To: TigerLikesRooster

bump


15 posted on 04/17/2010 7:45:05 AM PDT by VOA
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To: mountainlion
I need my roads fixed so why are they ignoring my roads and making them worse so city people can ride in a fancy train at my expense?

Because imported gas is too expensive and city people have more votes than you do.

16 posted on 04/17/2010 7:47:05 AM PDT by Willie Green
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To: TigerLikesRooster

Ethanol is best used for drinking, not as a motor fuel


17 posted on 04/17/2010 7:54:43 AM PDT by Figment ("A communist is someone who reads Marx.An anti-communist is someone who understands Marx" R Reagan)
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To: 2right

Everything our government does these days is a tax increase. Working, taxpaying citizens be damned


18 posted on 04/17/2010 7:57:13 AM PDT by Figment ("A communist is someone who reads Marx.An anti-communist is someone who understands Marx" R Reagan)
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To: sitkaspruce

It takes more energy to create ethanol than the energy we get out of it. Only the typical liberal who can’t do math ( remember liberals “feel” they don’t “think”) could come up with a scam like ethanol.


19 posted on 04/17/2010 7:58:12 AM PDT by GOPJ (http://hisz.rsoe.hu/alertmap/index2.php?area=dam&lang=eng)
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To: Willie Green
Because imported gas is too expensive and city people have more votes than you do.
Kinda like theft by mob action I guess.

We do not need to be importing gas because we have more resources than Saudi Arabia. Our Government must be a greedy as the Saudies.

20 posted on 04/17/2010 8:00:06 AM PDT by mountainlion (concerned conservative.)
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To: niteowl77

There were a few guys running alcohol cars at the local drag strip back in the days when I cared about all things automotive,

They were burning methanol. No food lost in making wood alcohol. People using alcohol of their own choice is one thing, mandating it for everyone is another


21 posted on 04/17/2010 8:01:42 AM PDT by Figment ("A communist is someone who reads Marx.An anti-communist is someone who understands Marx" R Reagan)
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Comment #22 Removed by Moderator

To: TigerLikesRooster

The fuel pump went out on my car recently and I was told that there was a direct ethanol connection.


23 posted on 04/17/2010 8:08:30 AM PDT by Fast Moving Angel (We'll remember in November!)
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To: musicman

My favorite reason for mandating ethanol: since we are subsidizing the farmers already, we might as well get something in return.
/s


24 posted on 04/17/2010 8:13:02 AM PDT by Madistan ((This space for rent))
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To: Madistan
You already do get something, lower food prices. If you eliminate ALL farm subsidies, some farmers will go under, decreasing the food supply. Same demand, lower supply equals what? You guessed it, higher prices.

Today, we benefit from a relatively stable food supply, let's keep it that way.

BTW I am totally against the ethanol subsisies. When you have to put out $1.50 to get $1.00, you will eventually go broke. The only reason to ever use food for fuel, would be if our supply of petroleum were to be cut off completely.

oops, sorry, I missed the sarcasm tag

25 posted on 04/17/2010 8:56:49 AM PDT by snowtigger (It ain't what you shoot, it's what you hit...)
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To: TigerLikesRooster

The whole fricking thing has been a hoax from the BEGINNING. If you put 10% WATER in good gas it will still burn, you will just get 10% worse mileage. 10% ethanal is evne worse than that. The ethanol may actually harm some components and cause damage. THere have been boats lost to fire cuz the ethanol caused a leak in the fuel tank and the bilge pump ignited the fuel there.


26 posted on 04/17/2010 9:03:35 AM PDT by wastoute (Government cannot redistribute wealth. Government can only redistribute poverty.)
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To: Madistan

On EtOH blends, 10% cost me 1 MPG in my GMC Yukon. Plus what ever damage it does. We curse the Saudis, but most imported oil comes from Messico and Canada. The World Market set the price regardless of origin. Domestic Oil will be priced thusly. Hard to believe that 40 ¥ears ago we had import quotas because imports were cheaper. Regardless we need to drill to freeze out the alternative sources which can’t compete with petroleum.
barbra ann


27 posted on 04/17/2010 9:22:55 AM PDT by barb-tex (REMEMBER NOVEMBER!!! Slim as it may be, it is our last hope.)
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To: snowtigger
You already do get something, lower food prices. If you eliminate ALL farm subsidies, some farmers will go under, decreasing the food supply. Same demand, lower supply equals what? You guessed it, higher prices.

Today, we benefit from a relatively stable food supply, let's keep it that way.

Very few people recognize the truth of what you just said.

28 posted on 04/17/2010 9:34:47 AM PDT by Balding_Eagle (Overproduction, one of the top five worries of the American Farmer each and every year..)
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To: barb-tex
..all true, very true, however, even truer is the fact that when more domestic production begins it will prolly be just in time to compete with uber-cheap finished product shipped in from giant labor cheap refineries in India/China etc..

Either way taxpayer sponsored corpo-corn is a waste all 'round every time it's tried.

Btw- I'm on my second fuel pump and some other parts ruined by ethanol. So, not only am I paying taxes to ADM to destroy my private property, I have to pay to repair it.

I'm sure there's a legal way to bill ADM(maybe that's a way to end this trickery).

29 posted on 04/17/2010 9:51:07 AM PDT by norraad ("What light!">Blues Brothers)
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To: Balding_Eagle
It amazes mr to watch otherwise rational people rail against farmers and their subsidies. Yet they go to the supermarket and there before their eyes is the greatest supply of food in the world.

I know a farmer in North Dakota who farms 4,200 acres, small by comparison. Some years he does well, but in other years he would not make it without the subsidies.

Before oil shot up to it,s cyrrent levels, increasing everything from fuel to fertilizer, he spent $287,000.00 to put his crop in the ground. Then he has to hope for rain, hope grasshoppers don't come and destroy everything, hope for good weather, hope prices hold out until he sells his crops. That man has more faith than anyone I know.

After he sells his crop, he has to pay off the bank, the Fed, his help and the crew that does the harvesting. Add a dozen others that I can't remember at this time. After all these are paid, he gets what is left. Some years that means scrimping all winter so he can try it again. Luckily,some years he gets to get a new kitchen or a new car, or to take a vacation.

Think about this the next time you pick up a box of macaroni or spagetti. That stuff dsoesn't just materialize out of thin air.

Without farm subsidies, small farms like his would dissapear. What would happen if the only farmers left were the large corporations?

BTW Balding Eagle, this was not directed at you, just a rant about opposition to farm subsidies.

30 posted on 04/17/2010 10:11:17 AM PDT by snowtigger (It ain't what you shoot, it's what you hit...)
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To: snowtigger

Yes, they call them Farm Subsidies. It would be far more accurate to call them Cheap Food For Consumers Payments.

BTW, see my tagline.


31 posted on 04/17/2010 10:31:59 AM PDT by Balding_Eagle (Overproduction, one of the top five worries of the American Farmer each and every year..)
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To: Figment
They were burning methanol.

Yes they were. IIRC, methanol yields even fewer BTUs than ethanol, but both are well behind gasoline in that regard, which was something that just struck me as odd back then, given the capabilities of the trailered-in cars that used alcohol.

To this day I am a sucker for an alcohol-fueled, Hilborn-injected nostalgia drag car, but I don't want Big Brother mandating it in my vehicles.

Mr. niteowl77

32 posted on 04/17/2010 11:30:45 AM PDT by niteowl77 (You wanted him, and now you have got him. I say, "Good day to you," America.)
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To: Balding_Eagle
Yes, they call them Farm Subsidies. It would be far more accurate to call them Cheap Food For Consumers Payments.

There's a big push on now to up the ethanol percentage to 15 % (from the present 10% max), regardless of what this will do to engines and mileage.

Ergo, we should expect lower food prices from the increase.

QED?

33 posted on 04/17/2010 11:37:07 AM PDT by Ole Okie
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To: TigerLikesRooster

I just bought an ethanol test kit from Experimental Aircraft Assoc (EAA). Yes, you can do a crude test with any test tube, gasoline and water but this gives the actual percentage. Plus, there is an instant presence/non-presence test if you want to see if there is alcohol present or not. I can’t take a chance with my old outboard and don’t particularly want to replace carb parts on the vintage bikes.


34 posted on 04/17/2010 11:42:08 AM PDT by steve86 (Acerbic by nature, not nurture)
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To: TigerLikesRooster

Corn is food; oil is for machines.
Repeat:
Corn is food; oil is for machines.
Better write it on the blackboard 100 times.
Corn is food; oil is for machines.
Corn is food; oil is for machines.
Corn is food; oil is for machines.
Corn is food; oil is for machines.
Keep going.


35 posted on 04/17/2010 12:43:27 PM PDT by RoadTest (Religion is a substitute for the relationship God wants with you.)
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To: Ole Okie
Ethanol is less of a subsidy, and more of a market outlet for much of the annual overproduction of corn.

Sometime back I wrot a piece about how farm subisides affect food prices. If you are interested, here it is:

The programs, as briefly described below, were designed and refined to provide the most plentiful food ever, at the lowest prices in human history, not to help the farmers.

If you care to read it, here is how, and it is a tribute indeed to the skilled bureaucrats who put it all together.

For the past 50 years or more the farm programs (really food programs, as they were designed primarily from the food available angle) have been carefully crafted and annually refined.

The final acreage allotments, price supports etc. aren’t put into place until the very last moment, so that the desired crop size can be more precisely met. The goal is to produce just enough excess food stuffs to keep the price down, but not so much as to drive too many farmers out of business in that crop cycle. .

Price supports are in place so that farmers can count on a certain ‘floor’ price for their crop, sort of a minimum wage. This money will allow them to plan to be in business for the next year.

Acreage allotments set by the USDA allow for a big crop, more than the consumers can use. As a result, there has always been a surplus, often a huge surplus, hanging over the market, keeping prices down, sort of a maximum wage.

Imagine some guy standing in your boss’s office asking for your job everyday, willing to work for just a bit less than you are. Not at the employment agency, but actually in your boss’s office, ready to take your job on a couple minutes notice. With that kind of situation, it’s going to be hard for you to ask for a raise, and it’s also hard for crop prices to rise significantly with the surplus that the government has arranged to be hanging over the market you compete in.

Fifty years ago, when this was just beginning, a lot of farmer didn’t enroll. As the years passed, these programs began to squeeze every farmer. It is now to the point where nearly every farmer in the United States is enrolled. Very few farmers have the financial resources needed not to enroll, because a particularly large crop can force prices so low they can be driven out of business within one crop cycle without the assurance of the government floor on prices for those enrolled in the program. That means that the government has control over nearly every aspect of crop size, how long the farmer will store his crop after harvest, and at what price he will sell it for.

All of the above is designed primarily to keep food stock supplies up, prices down, and food cheap for the consumer. Secondarily, it’s designed to keep farmers poor, so they will be forced to enroll in the program next year.

A quick trip through the Midwest, our breadbasket, will reveal the accuracy of the success of that Secondary target. Small towns, which rely on the financial earning of the farmers to survive, are poor. A trip through the countryside where the farmers actually live will show farm families who live a very simple life. I’m not asking you to feel sorry for any of them, anyone could move elsewhere. I did.

Ethanol has been the straw that broke the back of the cheap food train, but it could have been just about anything.

With the introduction of ethanol, prices rose and farmers found an escape route from their predicament. No longer is there enough money and power in the farm program subsidies to keep them trapped. .

Farmers are now free to do what their hearts have desired to do for decades, produce enormous crops……. And then get paid for those crops by willing buyers who will pay a price that ensures a fair profit.

Now that the complainers about the farm program subsidies have gotten their wish, and the farmers don’t need to government programs, they are now complaining that food prices are too high.

It seems we can not have both at once, low food prices and no government programs.

Rush has asserted that the most expensive commodity traded in the United State is ignorance. The ignorance, even here at Free Republic, about where and how our food is produced, and how it comes to our tables, and how the farm programs have affected our food supply and food prices is a good example of that assertion.

36 posted on 04/18/2010 10:19:41 AM PDT by Balding_Eagle (Overproduction, one of the top five worries of the American Farmer each and every year..)
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To: Balding_Eagle

Food proces are about the same now that
commodity speculators have went busted
They were the problem with prices.

Article is crappola-—
Oil co taxes are higher compared to others, like
GE had zero corporate taxes this year,
but oil co paid theirs.

Food and commodity price volatility was due to
speculators pulling money from bad real estate
hedge funds and going crazy in commodities
for a year or so befor they went busted.

Articles have outed the anti-ethanol bunch-
They are under the auspices of the grocery
alliance. Members of said alliance are companies
owned by same speculators that drove up those prices,
and then tried to blame farmers and ethanol
producers

By the way the ethanol producers don’t get the
tax credit, the the oil co do as a blending credit
and it is being reduced.The farmers get no price
support as corn is slightly above the support level.

Ethanol is a by-product in the process of making
high protein feed and feed has more dollar value,
Example say if ethanol production is increased 50%,
the high protein feed output is increased 50% which
adds to the amount of meat that can be finished out
at the same price per cow,hog,etc.Increased supply
means stable feed prices and input.
And now that speculators are busted the commodity
and food price structure is stable.

And because of this we are not shorting food.
If we need more, there is another 70-90 million acres
idle than can raise corn; corn acreage now is
90 million acres. Folks don’t let the anti ethanol
bunch snow you, it is cheaper than gas and it is
helping to hold the gas price down.The lower pump price
saves the consumer the equivalent of the 4billion
yearly tax credit oil co get every 10 days at the
pump, due to prices being held down.

I get an extra mpg with 10 percent blend as it makes
the whole mixture burn cleaner putting out more pure
combustion products like water and CO2, instead of
unburnt hydrocarbons.And CO2 is not a pollutant,
the plants needed for life on the earth use it,
like the corn.

And back to the corn. It is good to take care of the
land. AND when you taise corn you take off 5 ton
of corn and leave 30 plus tons of stalks per yr, that
keeps the humous and carbon content of the soil
up. More than anything you can raise..Ed


37 posted on 04/18/2010 4:09:20 PM PDT by hubel458
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To: niteowl77

“but I don’t want Big Brother mandating it in my vehicles”

Yeah, same here. My V8 runs like crap on the stuff and I’m subsidizing it with my tax dollars too. Talk about getting screwed seven ways to Sunday...


38 posted on 04/19/2010 6:23:02 PM PDT by Figment ("A communist is someone who reads Marx.An anti-communist is someone who understands Marx" R Reagan)
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