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Show calf disconnect?
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Posted 10/16/2020 11:45 (#8548768 - in reply to #8547210)
Subject: RE: Show calf disconnect?


The replies to these posts are always interesting, but I think the actual answer to your question was barely touched upon. Mostly because it requires writing a book and actual conversation instead of a quick quip. 

Why do we have factory half ton trucks with 700hp? 
Why aren't F1 drivers racing a Corvette off the dealer lot? 
Why don't top fuel dragsters just race the newest Mustang? 
Why do we pack stadiums to watch Monster trucks instead of F150s? 
Why aren't race horses just the fastest pony from the ranch anymore? 

None of the above serve a purpose in the real world, yet a lot of people partake in them and some even make a good living doing it. Whether they know it or not, and one of your post below hints that you do, showing livestock isn't even about the animals for ~75% of families. Considering the average sized cow herd isn't even profitable, apparently owning commercial cattle isn't even about the animals for many commercial producers either.


How many people on here believe the packer cares if cattle producers actually make a good living? Lets take that answer, or theme, and move to the next step. If there was a show with a panel of packer buyers as judges, how many of the not for profit farms/ranches, who are currently supporting the packers via labor donation, would show up with a calf? When they lose, how many would go home and add 2 frame scores to their cows in order to create what the industry tells them it desires? If you're willing to travel, there are modern examples of the above playing out right now. It has lead to nearly irreparable damage to the country's cow herds. So much so they are importing defect free cattle from Canada and the US in order to keep the defects the industry pushed them toward from taking over. One of those defects is firmly connected to a decrease in fertility. Sounds like fun to me.

Another interesting perspective to all this...  US packers don't care about show ring cattle, at all. The commercial producers, who basically work for the packers, often look down on the show calf world and tell their kids to stay home and grind away in the dirt instead of waste time on that haulter. Many, most??, of the kids who haul show calves around the country end up in college. Some of them end up with an Agricultural related degree. Guess who often recruits those kids to work for them with fat salaries and benefits when they graduate? There's some dark comedy involved in that circle of life. Considering the rate at which farms fail, the on farm brain drain, and the amount of non farm individuals who are investing in land, that humor might get even darker in the future for those who place value in the ability to buy dirt.

But I'm watching a steer show and ranting on NAT instead of spending the time out grinding away in the dirt, so what do I know. ;-)

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