Food production = national security

Today as we celebrate our political independence from England, let us not forget what the early settlers had to accomplish immediately after setting foot on the shores of the new country they sought to inhabit.

Without the ability to at first purchase, but shortly thereafter produce, the first settlers had to become skilled in agriculture. Their lives depended on it.

The California Aqueduct as it passes ...

The California Aqueduct as it passes through Central California near Interstate 5. Photograph taken by Triddle (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Our lives still depend on it. Agriculture is the lifeblood of our nation and accounts for billions of dollars annually for the economy of the San Joaquin Valley of California alone. Commercial agriculture continues to be a major economic factor in other regions of the United States as well. We need no other nation to feed us; our ability to sustain our most basic of needs rests solely on our ability to produce this food. To achieve this feat requires water. Without it we starve.

For California it’s not a lack of rain and snow that we must worry about, but a lack of water where and when we need it. Our proximity to the Pacific Ocean blesses us — most of the time — with enough annual rain and snow to meet the needs of nature, farmers and urban dwellers. Sadly, California lacks the political will, driven by common sense, to solve this problem through simple means.

We can do what it takes to build the storage and conveyance systems necessary to provide ample water for nature, agricultural production and urban uses, or we can cede our agricultural self-sufficiency to other countries. That is our choice. Keep in mind the consequences of such a move.

America’s ability to feed itself and control enough water to maintain is agricultural production is as much an issue of national security as it is maintaining a strong and viable military in order to “provide for the common defense” as cited in the Preamble of the U.S. Constitution.

We the people of the United States, in order to form a more perfect union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.

Imagine the national crisis that would ensue if we ceded our agricultural production to another nation. America has the safest and most abundant food supply on the planet. I once heard someone talk radio suggest that we could simply buy our food from South America or elsewhere. Given the fact that the phytosanitary standards of the United States far exceed those of the rest of the world, I’m not ready to trust my health to food produced in other nations.

Our dependence upon foreign oil is a classic example of what happens when nations that do not have our political or other best interests at heart become our major suppliers of necessary commodities. Are we willing as a nation to cede our food production to other nations as well?

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