So-called conservative Montana House Speaker Austin Knudsen recently talked about making hard choices on what government should spend its money on in tough fiscal times. What's so hypocritical and humorous is that he conveniently leaves out the fact that his family agriculture operation receives over $40,000 a year in taxpayer-funded agricultural subsidies to keep his business afloat — which is nearly the average annual salary for working Montanans.

Knudsen goes on to blast Gov. Steve Bullock for creating an office of outdoor recreation to promote this sector of our economy. Again, Knudsen conveniently leaves out that outdoor recreation has surpassed agriculture as our state's biggest economic driver. That doesn't even take into account the fact that agriculture is heavily subsidized – and always coming back wanting more and more handouts from the public. The American (Montana) taxpayers are the folks that pay entitlements for the agriculture folks like Knudsen.

It's ironic listening to Republicans who call themselves conservative and blast “big government” programs that help people, including basic medical care for the working poor. They always seem to forget how much they belly up to the government trough. Seems the rules about self-sufficiency and conservative ideology don't apply to them. I guess entitlements that serve them are okay, but entitlements that serve others are bad and need to go away. Let’s be completely real here and speak only truth, these so-called conservatives are anything but conservative; in reality they are nothing more than radical corporatists, like hogs at a feed trough.

Sara Bruesch


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