Download American Agriculture in the Twentieth Century: How It by Bruce L. Gardner PDF

By Bruce L. Gardner

ISBN-10: 067401989X

ISBN-13: 9780674019898

American agriculture within the 20th century has given the realm considered one of its nice luck tales, a paradigm of productiveness and lots. but the tale has its darkish aspect, from the plight of the Okies within the Nineteen Thirties to the farm obstacle of the Eighties to modern day matters approximately low crop costs and the influence of biotechnology. taking a look at U.S. farming during the last century, Bruce Gardner searches out reasons for either the striking growth and the power social difficulties that experience marked the background of yankee agriculture. Gardner records either the industrial problems that experience faced farmers and the technological and fiscal differences that experience lifted them from relative poverty to financial parity with the nonfarm inhabitants. He offers an in depth research of the explanations of those tendencies, with emphasis at the function of presidency motion. He reports how commodity help courses, pushed through interest-group politics, have spent 1000s of billions of greenbacks to little goal. still, Gardner concludes that through reconciling competing fiscal pursuits whereas fostering productiveness progress and monetary integration of the farm and nonfarm economies, the final twentieth-century function of presidency in American agriculture is reasonably seen as a triumph of democracy. (20030101)

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Attempting to pull all the partial productivity measures together results in a confusing story. S. agriculture. Energy productivity indicates remarkable regress. S. agriculture remains much less productive than countries such as Japan. 8 1920 1930 1940 1950 1960 1970 1980 1990 Labor productivity. S. Department of Commerce (1975). United States as in New Zealand. S. grain and New Zealand is a low-cost exporter of dairy products. Something is going wrong analytically. Which indicator is the right one?

Pesticides are controversial in ways that other technological changes are not—although all the main twentieth-century innovations have drawn criticism. All pesticides are poisonous to some forms of life, and there is always the worry that unintended targets, including humans, will be harmed when pesticides are applied. Incidents such as the feared contamination of cranberries in 1958, which led to much of the crop’s being condemned for human consumption at the Thanksgiving season, made headline news.

Productivity Growth To pull these technological changes together analytically, we need an overall indicator of productivity growth. Most practical discussion of productivity Technology 29 29 uses relatively straightforward concepts such as crop yield (output per acre), labor productivity (output per worker), or other ratios that divide a measure of output by a measure of input (milk per cow, corn production per ton of fertilizer or fuel). Some of these ratios are also called measures of efficiency, particularly in energy use where improvement in output per unit of heat energy used in grain drying, for example, is called an indicator of energy efficiency.

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