Slog News & Arts

Line Out

Music & Nightlife

« The Morning News | Ms. Pacman Awaits You »

Monday, June 9, 2008

The Saviour of Rural Folk

posted by on June 9 at 7:59 AM


Anthony Clark, a farm worker from Tchula, says he prays every night for lower gasoline prices. He recently decided not to fix his broken 1992 Chevrolet Astro van because he could not afford the fuel.

RSS icon Comments


Where's your Messiah NOW Red State America?!?! HA HA HA!!!!

Posted by Cato the Younger Younger | June 9, 2008 8:09 AM

Who is the artist?

Posted by John | June 9, 2008 8:19 AM

this is a stupid fucking post, and charles is a stupid fucking douche.

Posted by martha stewart | June 9, 2008 8:28 AM

The hicks and rubes and hayseeds don't need us to swoop in and save them from their fuel gluttony. It's true they wasted a lot of their money on vehicles that will soon be obsolete, but there's no helping it. They'll take some losses and they are smart enough to move on to a more realistic lifestyle.

The point bears repeating because there will be no end of bailouts proposed to stick all of us with the cost of all those huge trucks. If I thought these people really were retarded I'd feel sorry for them. But they're not and I don't.

Posted by elenchos | June 9, 2008 8:29 AM

Why, just a raspberry plucker runs you $200,000. Fuck these people. I love it when everything goes to shit. Hail Satan.

Posted by Mr. Poe | June 9, 2008 8:31 AM

I smell brown earth and air from high mountains as I press my nose to the nexus of what could've been over the past fourteen years.

Posted by on another subject | June 9, 2008 8:40 AM

And again we are reminded of European countries where petro is $10/gal, and no one complains.

Posted by mac2nite | June 9, 2008 8:42 AM

"Rural idiocy" again?


Posted by k | June 9, 2008 8:49 AM

mac2nite you're a big fucking idiot.

it doesn't take someone with half a brain to know that european countries developed differently from the us, they have always been more dense. americans drive greater distances and live in more rural areas. of course i wouldn't expect you to know that because you’re obviously retarded.

Posted by charles sucks | June 9, 2008 8:55 AM

Ha ha, yeah, fuck those farm workers! Right on!

Posted by laterite | June 9, 2008 8:57 AM

I wonder who the self-righteous urban elite thinks is going to feed them when the farmers can't afford to run their equipment anymore.

Well, screw them, right? They should have been using solar-powered tractors and trucks all along anyways.

Posted by Thisbe | June 9, 2008 9:03 AM

Also, Europeans bitch about gas prices too. In the UK the PM has been pestered to take off some gas taxes to ease the pain at the pump (sound familiar??)

They have just dealt with higher prices for much longer, because the taxes are much higher.

But yeah, rural and city people who think the economy will be better in 1 year are morons.

Posted by Original Monique | June 9, 2008 9:03 AM

@5 -- Raspberry plucker, indeed. HAHA

I see you're off to a blazing start for a Monday morning...and already invoking Bealzebub into the bargain.

This looks to be a banner week for our teenage curmudgeon, folks...

Posted by Jubilation T. Cornball | June 9, 2008 9:05 AM

NYT: "Spanish Truckers Block Border" to protest high fuel prices. Seems when the europeans aren't busy not complaining, they're busy schooling us on how to complain effectively. My takeaway: it's not effective to complain just on Slog.

Posted by tomasyalba | June 9, 2008 9:09 AM

"fuel gluttony"

really? you eat the food they produce with their "lifestyle choice" of fuel gluttony! this isn't a black and white world fool.

As a vegetarian, what will you eat when they move on to a more realistic lifestyle? Dirt?

Please give us an example of a "more realistic" farming "lifestyle". Keep in mind - slaves and oxen aren't currently realistic. Nor are hybrid tractors that can scrub 10,000 acres.

Posted by cochise. | June 9, 2008 9:12 AM

Mr Mudede, please credit the artist. Inquiring minds want to know, and any faint hint of ethics requires that if you're going to just put some art up, you should at least say who made it.

Posted by Intellectual Property | June 9, 2008 9:12 AM

16, 13, 12, 10, 2 are all where it's at.

Posted by tiffany | June 9, 2008 9:17 AM

charles sits in his ebony tower once again to look down his quasi-educated nose at those who have fed the nation. Maybe charles is just happy knowing that since this person's vehicle doesn't work, it can't run over a "sibling" that looks different. And no, I don't feel like letting it go.

Posted by Charles_Mudede_Is_A_Latent_Racist | June 9, 2008 9:20 AM
Posted by charles mudede | June 9, 2008 9:23 AM

Back to oxen and yoke, Bush lovers.

Posted by Vince | June 9, 2008 9:27 AM

High fuel prices will translate to higher food prices to compensate. This may take a while to shake out, but it always does. Iff Anthony Clark can't afford to farm anymore, there will be less food, which means prices will rise, which means it will be profitable again for people like Mr. Clark to farm again.

European farmers blocking the roads isn't "effective", unless by that you mean increasing the massive subsidies they already receive, which keep nations near bankruptcy and millions of non-farmers in poverty.

Blocking roads with trucks, and praying for cheap gas in the newspaper, are theater performances. This play has been running for a hundred years, and has very little to do with reality.

Posted by Fnarf | June 9, 2008 9:29 AM

And lo, they felt the sweat on their brow, and God did see their toil, and saw it was good.

Posted by Ziggity | June 9, 2008 9:30 AM

why did the artist cut out the hammer and sickle?

Posted by SeMe | June 9, 2008 9:31 AM

the farm worker's van is newer than 3 of my cars.

Posted by max solomon | June 9, 2008 9:43 AM

ps, right now the Amish are laughing their asses off.

Posted by P to the J | June 9, 2008 9:44 AM

Um, everybody who thinks this is about the poor farmers and a threat to our food: we already subsidize all the gas farmers use. Farmers are as sheltered from the price of oil as they are from the price of wheat.

This is not about farmers. This is about everybody except the farmers driving a bigass truck they don't need.

Posted by elenchos | June 9, 2008 9:45 AM

Years ago I saw a bumper sticker on the back of a farm truck that said "Don't knock a farmer with your mouth full." You might want to consider that before you insult the 'retards' who feed you.

Posted by yucca flower | June 9, 2008 9:47 AM

Farmers are whores, yucca flower.

Historically they have always been first in line to sell food to the Evil Empire, the Axis of Evil, and every other despot, terrorist regime or enemy of freedom around the globe. They'll have no qualms about selling food to latte-sipping liberal elites. As long as you've got a dollar in your pocket, insult them all you want.

Posted by elenchos | June 9, 2008 9:55 AM

can we at least insult ADM? they're not exactly a migrant farm worker.

Posted by max solomon | June 9, 2008 9:56 AM


Food prices are already skyrocketing. If this guy still can't make a profit, even with subsidies, he has issues that are in no way related to gas prices.

Posted by keshmeshi | June 9, 2008 10:13 AM

farmers: societal leeches with society's consent.

Posted by Bellevue Ave | June 9, 2008 10:16 AM

@27 do you understand how farming subsidies work? please tell my fruit farming buddies that their gas is subsidized. tell it to any small-medium sized farming family. a majority of all farm subsidies go to the largest of farms...the monsantos and doles.

what do you eat?

Posted by cochise. | June 9, 2008 10:17 AM

this article is not really about subsidized farmers but about the workers in the miss delta who live in sharecropper like conditions and about how the high price burdens are harder on the rural poor who spend about 13% of their income on gas as oppose to yall city folk who spend 4%. the article also mentions that rural folk are looking for alternatives such as finding work closer. so maybe marx forgot about the urban idiocy and the urban idiots who jump to conclusion?

Posted by SeMe | June 9, 2008 10:23 AM

I just want to point out that the Chevy Astro was is no way a giant gas guzzling SUV- it's a shitty little slab-sided minivan that was rightly killed off long ago. This guy is not the poster child for Red State Karmic Payback.

Posted by Big Sven | June 9, 2008 10:37 AM

If you can't afford to farm, you should STOP FARMING. Same as any other job. This especially applies to sharecroppers in the Delta, who will always be poorer than poor unless and until they GET OUT. This isn't news; even before the Great Migration, poor blacks and whites knew they had to GET OUT to survive, first to the Southern cities (New Orleans jazz, hello!) and then in the 20s-50s Northern cities like Chicago and Detroit. This calculus hasn't changed even if the destinations have. Continuing to farm for poverty wages PERPETUATES poverty.

Posted by Fnarf | June 9, 2008 10:42 AM

Good arguments on both sides of the issue, and for the most part civil. Oh, and charles is still a latent racist/overt elitist.

Posted by Charles_Mudede_Is_A_Latent_Racist | June 9, 2008 10:51 AM

I'm asking a question here out of legitimate curiosity, not to rile anyone up. Where does our food come from if small and medium farmers are driven out of business? Or does the cost adjust to keep them in business so produce becomes more expensive? In that case, how do poorer people afford fresh fruit and vegetables? This doesn't seem like the clear cut thing some of you are making it out to be. But, maybe it is and I just can't see it?

Posted by PopTart | June 9, 2008 10:56 AM

@38 - Small and medium farms have been on the decline for decades. As more of them leave the business (often when their children move to the city and don't take over the family farm), their production is replaced by large corporate agribusiness.

Posted by Jeff | June 9, 2008 11:09 AM

The NYT article is recommended reading. It points out a central truth (something Keith Bradsher pointed out 5 years ago) - the folks who buy the bulk of new cars are pretty well off and don't care that much about gas prices (they care some which is why big truck sales are down, but not much which is why they took so long to fall).

So it's the poor who are doubly screwed by high gas prices - first by the gas prices and second by the available used cars being chosen by wealthier folks.

Posted by bakfiets | June 9, 2008 11:31 AM

This post proves once and for all that Charles Mudede is a racist and an elitist and just plain full of shit. How do I know this is true? Because I can never understand what he's trying to say. And that proves that what he says is meaningless.

So there!

Posted by Bellevue Hospital | June 9, 2008 12:49 PM

The Chevy Astro may well be shitty. I've known some folks (typical GM masochists) who've had problems with the ... several they've purchased...

But it's not small. It's only small in the American context. It's not an minivan. It's a small truck-chassis van. (S-10 chassis, IIRC.)

And it's a wee guzzler.

A minivan it is not. Some of them (of the '92 vintage) do a little better on hwy mpg. Much better if you had bought a manual transmisison 4 cylinder... har har har... which Americans refused to do at the time. And still do.

'92 Plymouth minivan with 4 cyl + 5 speed manual, EPA 18 city, 26 hwy. But no, folks bought... V-6 Astros. They gots truck parts! They're tougher!

Several years ago, Astro vans were being imported by Japanese used car dealers as novelty cars. People had never seen something so BIG in their lives! They thought it was hilarious that a family of four could sit in the back and squat in a circle and have a pic-a-nic. I shit you not. It was like an RV to them.

Americans, esp. rural ones, can have good reasons for buying truckish things, but in general, Americans of all stripes have been determined to

a) not be seen in something small
b) not buy something with only 4 cylinders
c) not buy something with three pedals

for far too long. They can cry me a river. I just got 42 mpg on a tank in my '85 VW, and it's not even a diesel.

Posted by CP | June 9, 2008 10:32 PM

Comments Closed

Comments are closed on this post.