I read your editorial on John McCain's position on the ethanol industry [“Ethanol Takes a Hit,” October 2008]. I agree with him in regards to taking away some of the tax breaks, etc. The government has created a situation that will not work. They gave tax breaks and subsidies to get the industry started. They put tariffs on imported ethanol to eliminate its competition. When production exceeded demand, they required that more be sold under the pretense of renewable fuels. The prospect of rapid gains in commodities due to renewable fuel caused excessive speculation by non-farmers. This drove prices to false highs, which led to the increase of input prices.
It's easy for grain and livestock prices to go down, but don't hold your breath on reduction of the farmer's cost.