Preparing to testify at the confirmation hearings for Trump’s secretary of agriculture

Step 1. The White House has lost the address of the Senate Agriculture Committee

Chairman Roberts does not understand why President has lost his telephone number.


Step 2. Profile of President Trump’s choice and the problems that confront him


Step 3. Musical accompaniment


President Trump shames Sony Perdue two days after choosing him to run USDA

“[W]hen I’m interviewing all of these candidates that Reince and his whole group is putting in front, it went very, very quickly, and, in this case, went so quickly — because I would see six or seven or eight for Secretary of Agriculture, who we just named the other day, Sonny Perdue, former governor of Georgia.  Fantastic guy.  But I’d see six, seven, eight people for a certain position.  Everybody wanted it.

“But I met Mike Pompeo, and it was the only guy I met.  I didn’t want to meet anybody else.  I said, cancel everybody else.  Cancel.”


What’s Past is Prologue

The Politics of Food

“Mr. Butz’s nomination as secretary of agriculture by President Nixon in 1971 was approved in the Senate by a vote of only 51 to 44, an extraordinarily close margin for a cabinet figure, as his ties to agricultural big business coming under criticism. Nevertheless, he asserted himself from the outset in making farm policy.

“Butz’s power as secretary of agriculture seemed overwhelming,” Joel Solkoff wrote in “The Politics of Food” (Sierra Club Books, 1985). “He made one decision to sell the Russians massive quantities of grain that virtually overnight transformed the basic problem of U.S. agricultural policy from what to do with the surplus to how to make up for the shortage.”
The New York Times, February 4, 2008

Two versions of this book are available. Please choose PDF or RTF versions. This material in its current manifestation is copyright © 2011 by Joel Solkoff. My book is available in its entirety only to registered users. If you would like to read this, the fee is $10.


Favorable Reviews



Los Angeles Times

Bad reviews and additional good ones available upon request.


Meanwhile, Back to the Present

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