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Baxter Black

Baxter Black tackles ag issues with a strong funny bone. Black is an American cowboy, poet, philosopher and former veterinarian.

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People ask where I got my mittens, my saddle blanket, my wild rag, my dog’s muffler and my colorful selection of pot holders that hang in my tackroom. I always change the subject, but the time has come to confess.

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I was reminded of Harry Johnson today.

I’d been drivin’ down a long stretch of country road. The snow blowin’ up in the rearview mirror, a thermos of coffee in the seat, and the sun warmin’ the cab of the pickup.

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According to a food scientist at the University of Arizona, more than 100,000 plant and animal varieties have become endangered over the last quarter-century. In addition, it is commonly believed that only about 100 species of crops and livestock provide most of the food in the world.

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There is a bridge to cross in understanding between those who live off the land (rural), and those who benefit from it (urban) but have no personal relationship with it.

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Over the years, the number of large animal veterinarians has steadily declined. It is most evident in rural America and Canada. Many factors have contributed to this decline; the greatest is the change in the profession itself.

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In the land of Nod, a movement sprung up to build houses without the use of power tools. The advocates of organic construction (OC) supported the movement because it prohibited the recovery and use of carbon coal and oil.

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