According to the figures in Sunday's article, dairy farmers currently get paid about $1.64/gallon of milk to pay for land and buildings, cows and equipment, and work 80-plus hours/week to milk, feed and care for the cows. They also have high feed costs (about 75 cents/gallon), utility bills, and even pay to transport the milk to the processing plant. Many farmers are using past years' profits or borrowing money just to remain in business.
The processors and grocers get paid about $1.95/gallon and build in profits for themselves. If the dairy farmer were paid double ($3.28/gallon) for their milk it would not cost the processors or grocers any more; therefore the average price of milk should be $5.23/gallon, not the $6 to $8 being reported to scare farmers and consumers.
As for the critics who worry about childhood obesity caused by the fat and calories in milk, give me a break! Americans were thinner in 1975 when we drank almost 30 percent more milk. Try pointing the finger at sugary drinks, fattening food, and lack of exercise.
Farmers work extremely hard and take high risks to provide us an abundant supply of healthy food. They deserve all the money they can get.
TIM ROBERTS, Ooltewah
The editorial "Deliver real postal reform" (Dec. 26) seemed more real to me after an experience I had with a package I sent to my daughter in Colorado Springs, Colo.
The tracking information showed the trail the package took to be as follows: Dropped off at Ooltewah Post Office; arrived at Chattanooga PO; arrived back at Ooltewah PO; arrived back at Chattanooga PO; arrived at Denver PO; arrived at Atlanta PO; arrived back at Chattanooga PO; arrived at Aurora PO; arrived at Colorado Springs PO; delivered to destination.
All this took 12 days.
I wish I had gotten frequent flyer miles for this.
WALTER G. COCHRAN, Ooltewah
Bravo on the editorial (Dec. 30) on continuing to endorse candidates for election to public office. To use Navy terms -- "Outstanding work. Well done."
The editorial brings to mind the words of Teddy Roosevelt when he said: "Far better is it to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs, even though checkered by failure ... than to take rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy much nor suffer much, because they live in the gray twilight that knows neither victory nor defeat."
That is essential advice to all trial lawyers. It may merit consideration by editors and publishers.
This past election was an eye-opener. We returned 21 of 22 incumbent senators and 353 of 373 incumbent members of the House. All these to an institution that has an approval rating of around 10 percent. And to top it off, we re-elected a president who parties better than he governs.
It indicates we are a nation of idiots and willing to believe the big lie. As a result, we are now stuck with a bunch of useless bureaucrats in a dysfunctional government that can't get out of its own way.
It's the government we deserve.
RONALD WHEELER, Cleveland, Tenn.