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Wisconsin Dairymen's Association / Tenth annual report of the Wisconsin Dairymen's Association : held at Sheboygan, Wis., January 11-13, 1882. Report of the proceedings, annual address of the president, and interesting essays relating to the dairy interests
(1882)

Torrey, R. D.
The advantages of associated effort among farmers,   pp. 77-81 PDF (1.1 MB)


Page 80

 
Wiscosixr DAIRYExz'S Assomnom. 
them as samples, and to say that if abuses exist in either or other 
kindred topics, that the farmer has an unqualified and positive right 
to know all about that abuse, and, knowing, to set about for re- 
form. It is his duty to fully understand these questions, so that in 
his acts he may not make the mistakes in his organized efforts that 
have occurred in the last few years. It is not wise or safe to take 
the assertion of any one on such questions, but as the truth is with- 
in the reach of all, he should post himself; and no better method 
can be planned than through public discussion and public libraries, 
reading and thought for such purpose. 
Is it true that such enormous abuses exist under our present 
system of tariff as is claimed by the free trade men, or tariff-for- 
revenue-only men, and that the farmer is most vitally affected, or 
that the present system is the better for him? 
Is it true that the transportation companies make unjust discrim- 
inations and charge extortionate rates? Then he is certainly in- 
terested; and if true, of which he should be sure, then how can 
reform be brought about? Certainly not in any other way as well 
as by associated effort, and with associated effort his success is 
assured. 
Is it true that farmers in congress are so rare that we know not 
of their presence except on inquiry, and is it also true that greater 
representation is desirable from this large class? 
On such questions it is not wise that any clais should organize 
for the sole purpose of antagonizing other interests; but of all 
classes the farmer has an undisputed right to draw the " thus far 
and no farther" line, beyond which no other class could succeed 
against their united front. 
But commercially there are notable proofs of the wisdom of 
associated efforts in all places where farmers' boards of trade are 
established, for in such communities you never hear complaint of 
being the victims of unprincipled commission men or tradesmen. 
They bring the buyer and the producer together at the door of the 
latter, which is alike beneficial to both, as it rules out the sharper 
and allows each party a fair profit, the one for producing, the other. 
for buying and placing on other markets. 
I know of no place where such organizations exist among farmers 
that have proven other than successful, the degree of success 
depending only on the degrees of interest manifested by its mem- 
bership. 
80 
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