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Author Topic: U of F declares Florida a waste of money in regards to farming  (Read 1780 times)
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« on: February 11, 2008, 10:31:28 PM »

First off credit where it is due.
pdmattox sent me this story. I had no idea as to how true or false it was.
I have received confirmation this story is accurate.
http://www.farmandranchnews.com/breakingnewsframe.html

The story is below.


J. Bernard Machen, President of the University of Florida (UF), reportedly made a statement last week that has sent shockwaves throughout Florida’s agricultural community. Even Charles Bronson, Florida’s Commissioner of Agriculture, is greatly concerned.
Machen is reported to have said that “agriculture is a dying industry in the State of Florida” and “not worthy of the investments being made by the Legislature” in the University’s Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (IFAS).
Apparently those investments do not reach his goal of making UF one of the top 10 universities in the United States.
Accordingly, the $25 million (or more) in potential budget cuts he is considering for UF also contain plans to cut a disproportionate amount of funds from IFAS, with some cuts possibly being implemented as early as March of 2008!

Machen is considering cutting a number of faculty members from IFAS, consolidating their educational programs, close and/or severely cut some Extension offices (which include 4H) and make cuts within IFAS’ educational research centers.

 

How severely does he plan to cut? It has a lot to do with the reaction of the agricultural community to this issue!

 

Is agriculture a dying industry in Florida? “No way!” says Commissioner of Agriculture Charles Bronson when asked that question by the Farm & Ranch News staff.

 

“Florida agriculture had an economic value of $67 billion in 2001. Today, Florida agriculture has an economic value of $97 billion. With the “Farm-to-Fuel” program, Florida agriculture is expected to grow into a $200 billion industry,” said Bronson.

 

IFAS impacts more than just production agriculture. In Florida today, the 4H program, through the Extension Service, had an enrollment of over 243,000 youth. County and City governments utilize IFAS and Extension for their research and assistance in many issues, including water management, recycling, food safety and disease control.

 

The University of Florida can become one of the nation’s top 10 universities; but we need to educate President Machen, UF’s Board of Trustees, and our Florida Legislature of just how important IFAS and Extension is to agriculture and the youth of our state.

 

If you want to know what Extension does, and if letter writing works, click on Page Three of our website www.farmandranchnews.com. There you will see an article on how Palm Beach Extension was saved by letter writing. Next, click on Page Six and read an article by a current Extension Director who explains the scope of what Extension does.

 

The time for action is NOW! Don’t look over your shoulder and expect someone else to make calls and send letters to key people about this issue. If everyone did this, it won’t get done! Make sure you keep your letters positive! Talk about how IFAS, Extension and/or 4H has impacted you or your family. Negative and attacking emails will hurt our efforts, so you MUST keep it specific, positive and informative. If possible, give photo examples of areas in your life that IFAS, Extension and/or 4H has benefited you and your family. Here are the contacts you need to make:

 

J. Bernard Machen, President

University of Florida

226 Tigert Hall

Gainesville, FL 32611
The University of Florida Board of Trustees, 226 Tigert Hall, Gainesville, FL 32611.  Address it to these trustees: Carlos Alfonso, Courtney Cunningham, Roland C. Daniels, Mac McGriff, Joelen Merkel, Dianna Morgan, Ryan Moseley, Cynthia O'Connell, S. Daniel Ponce, Earl W. Powell, Steven M. Scott, Al Warrington, IV, and Richard A. Yost.
Also write your Florida House and Senate members. To find them and their addresses go to: http://www.flsenate.gov/Legislators/index.cfm?Mode=Find%20Your%20Legislators&Submenu=3&Tab=legislators&CFID=66063079&CFTOKEN=95039269
Sign up for Farm & Ranch News email alerts. Just click the email link at the top of our website or email farmandranchnews@yahoo.com to sign up. This will help keep you up to date on the latest news and actions being taken to help IFAS, Extension and 4H. We have also teamed up with Horse & Pony News to help spread the word. They are also keeping updates on their 4H dog website at http://www.fl4-h-dog.com/
Personally spread the word. Email a link to our website to anyone that might be interested in helping with this issue. Club leaders: encourage your kids to write during meetings.
By virtue of UF rules, employees of and staff members are not permitted to lobby about this issue and could lose their job if they do. Thus, it is up to us to act and act now!
We will update our website as we get more information.

End of Story.

I have sent an email to the head of the cooperative extension in Palm Beach County.
With the passing of Amendment one which will cause massive budget cuts across the board residents of Florida can expect to lose many of the items that assist us in the agricultural areas.

Sincerely,
Brendhan

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indypartridge
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« Reply #1 on: February 12, 2008, 10:38:17 AM »

Hey, $55 million to expand the football stadium is okay, because the football team won a national championship. What's the Ag dept done lately?  Sad

From Wiki:

The University of Florida is the second-largest university in the United States, with 50,912 students (as of Fall 2006) and has one of the largest budgets in the United States (nearly $4.377 billion per year).

Pres. Machen is paid $750,000 a year, the fourth largest salary in the country for a university president, once performance bonuses are included.

And by the way, the letters after Machen's name include "DDS". Yep, he's a dentist.
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Jerrymac
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« Reply #2 on: February 12, 2008, 10:45:28 AM »

Perhaps more people could afford an education if these people weren't paid so much.
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pdmattox
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« Reply #3 on: February 12, 2008, 01:10:39 PM »

check this blog out.
http://fireberniemachen.com/
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kathyp
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« Reply #4 on: February 12, 2008, 05:54:57 PM »

i have had the privilege and frustration of speaking to, and debating with, some academics in my more recent life.  they can be delightful and energetic people.

those who have made a career of academics share one rather large flaw.   they do not understand that what looks good on paper may not translate into real life.  you can game a thing six ways to Sunday on a blackboard, but when you try to implement the plan, it very often does not work.  the works of the academic world should be given due weight, but they should never have a large hand in bringing a plan from the blackboard to the real world.  they should not make policy.
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.....The greatest changes occur in their country without their cooperation. They are not even aware of precisely what has taken place. They suspect it; they have heard of the event by chance. More than that, they are unconcerned with the fortunes of their village, the safety of their streets, the fate of their church and its vestry. They think that such things have nothing to do with them, that they belong to a powerful stranger called the government. They enjoy these goods as tenants, without a sense of ownership, and never give a thought to how they might be improved.....

 Alexis de Tocqueville
shawnwri
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« Reply #5 on: February 12, 2008, 09:45:27 PM »

those who have made a career of academics share one rather large flaw.   they do not understand that what looks good on paper may not translate into real life. 

pretty harsh.  Dr. Tew is an excellent beek and an academic
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kathyp
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« Reply #6 on: February 12, 2008, 10:31:44 PM »

but he/she didn't make a career of only academics.  he/she has real world experience.  i am talking about those who spend their lives teaching and writing and opining, but never doing. they very often think that those who are doing the doing, should do it according to their theories, proven or not.
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.....The greatest changes occur in their country without their cooperation. They are not even aware of precisely what has taken place. They suspect it; they have heard of the event by chance. More than that, they are unconcerned with the fortunes of their village, the safety of their streets, the fate of their church and its vestry. They think that such things have nothing to do with them, that they belong to a powerful stranger called the government. They enjoy these goods as tenants, without a sense of ownership, and never give a thought to how they might be improved.....

 Alexis de Tocqueville
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« Reply #7 on: February 12, 2008, 11:35:48 PM »

Well now he is apparently denying the report.

http://www.ocala.com/article/20080212/NEWS/802120338/1368/googlesitemapnews

I will make sure you understand I had this story confirmed before I posted it.

One way or another IFAS is getting some serious budget cuts.

Sincerely,
Brendhan

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shawnwri
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« Reply #8 on: February 13, 2008, 11:54:04 AM »

but he/she didn't make a career of only academics.  he/she has real world experience.  i am talking about those who spend their lives teaching and writing and opining, but never doing. they very often think that those who are doing the doing, should do it according to their theories, proven or not.

Albert Einstein and Stephen Hawking are too that come quickly to mind that didn't have practicle world experience in their area of study yet have contributed greatly by teaching, writing and opining and never doing.  You have to develop a hypothesis, test it and then proceed from there.  That is the scientific method.
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kathyp
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« Reply #9 on: February 13, 2008, 02:30:31 PM »

there are many things about which you can develop theorys, but are imposable to prove or test.  i have no problem with that.  if you don't have the theory, you don't have a reason to try to prove it.
usually the effort  will eventually prove or nullify the theory even though it may take many years.

there are those who come up with a theory and insist that it is correct because it looks good on paper.  regardless of the proof or lack of it, they insist that they must be believed because "look!  the computer models say it is so."  this often happens in the soft sciences.  there, a theory is much harder to prove.  one good example that comes to mind is the embracing of communism as an evolved form of government.  there was a great deal of excitement among the academics at the turn of the last century about this excellent and fair system.  unfortunately, they failed to take into consideration human nature and the consequences of forcing people to act against their nature.  even though there are no successful examples of communism to be found, many academics still embrace the notion because it looks good on paper.
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.....The greatest changes occur in their country without their cooperation. They are not even aware of precisely what has taken place. They suspect it; they have heard of the event by chance. More than that, they are unconcerned with the fortunes of their village, the safety of their streets, the fate of their church and its vestry. They think that such things have nothing to do with them, that they belong to a powerful stranger called the government. They enjoy these goods as tenants, without a sense of ownership, and never give a thought to how they might be improved.....

 Alexis de Tocqueville
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