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General Discussions => General Discussion => Topic started by: daniel1948 on August 15, 2019, 12:04:03 PM

Title: 130 football fields of cheese
Post by: daniel1948 on August 15, 2019, 12:04:03 PM
It was mentioned on Slate Money that there are 130 (plus or minus 10) football fields of cheese stored underground in Kansas, from when Jimmy Carter was President. This led Felix to offer that cheese would be better than astroturf for playing football on. Of course, nobody is playing football on all that cheese. And they didn't clarify the thickness. It would have been more helpful (but far less amusing) if they'd given the volume, rather than the area, of the cheese. If it were spread 1/8 inch thick, 130 football fields of cheese would be a lot less cheese than if it were piled up to the top of the goal posts.

I just had to post this because the image of 130 football fields of cheese tickled my funny bone.

Their point had more to do with the folly of buying commodities as a way of supporting farm prices. At the time the government gave away cheese and other commodities to poor people. But apparently there's a lot of cheese still in underground storage. I guess cheese can keep for a long time. But I'd imagine that if the government offers a fixed price for cheese, cheese-makers will sell them the lowest-quality cheese they can make.
Title: Re: 130 football fields of cheese
Post by: random poet on August 15, 2019, 12:32:00 PM
This raises so many more questions than it answers.
Title: Re: 130 football fields of cheese
Post by: amysrevenge on August 15, 2019, 01:03:39 PM
Maybe they meant that they buried cheese under 130 football fields in Kansas?  Hahaha I love so many things about this.  How Americans will use any measures just to not use metric.  Why area instead of volume?  Hasn't it gone bad by now?  How good was it to begin with?  Can I have some?  My head is spinning.
Title: Re: 130 football fields of cheese
Post by: 2397 on August 15, 2019, 01:21:01 PM
Plastic football fields is one of the most moronic uses of plastic. Do a one-time replacement using surplus cheese instead, sure.

But if it takes a larger area to produce the cheese than you use for people to play on, just get rid of the cows and play on the feedlots.
Title: Re: 130 football fields of cheese
Post by: seamas on August 15, 2019, 02:58:31 PM
I high school I had a history teacher who played in the NFL briefly.
All of his descriptions of size were football related --area and length was in terms of football fields. The heads on Easter Island look like they are wearing football helmets. WWI pilots dropped bombs about the size of footballs, etc

He was a nice enough guy, but fit the "dumb jock" stereotype to a T.

Title: Re: 130 football fields of cheese
Post by: daniel1948 on August 15, 2019, 04:00:25 PM
Maybe they meant that they buried cheese under 130 football fields in Kansas?  Hahaha I love so many things about this.  How Americans will use any measures just to not use metric.  Why area instead of volume?  Hasn't it gone bad by now?  How good was it to begin with?  Can I have some?  My head is spinning.

I'm wondering if maybe there are warehouses with a total floor space equal to 130 football fields. But she didn't specify. Cheese can keep for a very long time. It was probably not very good cheese to begin with, but may well be as good now as it ever was.  I have no idea if there's a way to get any of it now.

Before the first Gulf war the military stocked up on rations. The war was over much sooner than expected, and the government tried to give some of the food to poor people. What I heard was that the stuff was so bad that poor people would not eat it. But I never encountered any of it myself.
Title: Re: 130 football fields of cheese
Post by: bimble on August 15, 2019, 05:14:09 PM
Maybe this is where they get the cheese for the Big Block of Cheese Day*...  ;)


* - from The West Wing episode
Title: Re: 130 football fields of cheese
Post by: brilligtove on August 15, 2019, 05:52:53 PM
Government Cheese (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Government_cheese)

Enjoy the rabbit hole.

https://youtu.be/otGO0a7OPtg

Quote
Hey girl, you know, our economy's in the toilet
But I'm still gonna treat you right
I said you can have whatever you like, if you like
I said you can have whatever you like, if you like
Yeah

Tater tots, Cold Duck on ice
And we can clip coupons all night
And baby you can have whatever you like, if you like
I said you can have whatever you like, if you like
Yeah

Take you out for dinner anywhere that you please
Like Burger King or Mickey D's
And baby you can have whatever you like, if you like
I said you can even have the large fries, large fries
Yeah

Baby, you should know I am really quite a sweet guy
When I buy you bathroom tissue, I always get the 2-ply
Want it, you can get it, my dear
I got my Costco membership card right here

Yeah you like Top Ramen? Need Top Ramen?
Got a cupboard full of 'em, I'll keep 'em comin'
You want it, I got it, go get it, just heat it
Dump the flavor packet on it and eat it

Pork and beans and Minute Rice
And we can play cribbage all night
And baby you can have whatever you like, if you like
I said you can have whatever you like, if you like
Yeah

I can take you to the Laundromat downtown
And watch all the clothes go 'round and 'round
And baby we can go wherever you like, if you like
I said we can go wherever you like, if you like
Yeah

Hottest shorty I know, if you had some lipo
You could be second runner-up Miss Ohio
Seven dollar bills rolled up inside my plastic billfold
Buy you a bagel even if it is a day old

And you never ever gotta wear your sister's old clothes
Long as I'm still assistant manager at Kinko's
Cut your hair with scissors and a soup bowl
You ain't gotta pay me, that's the way that I roll

My chick can have what she want
At Wal-Mart she can pick out anything she want
I know girl, you ain't never had a man like that
Who doesn't make you buy generic brand like that

Yeah you like my Hyundai? See my Hyundai?
I can take you to see your cousin Phil next Sunday
But that's kinda far and I'm not made of cash
Do you think you could chip in for gas?

Mac and cheese would be all right
But let's send out for pizza tonight
And you can order any toppings you like, if you like
I said you can even have the last slice, last slice
Yeah

Ran myself a cable from my neighbor next do', do'
Now I can get free HBO
And baby you can watch whatever you like, if you like
I said you can watch whatever you like, if you like
Yeah

And you can always ride the city bus
Got a stack of tokens just for us
Yo, my wallet's fat and full of ones
Yeah, it's all about the Washingtons, that's right

You want White Castle? Need White Castle?
Long as you got me it won't be no hassle
You want it, well get it, just don't be a hater
If I grab a bunch of napkins for later

Thrift store jeans, on sale half price
The underwear at Goodwill is nice
And baby you can have whatever you like, if you like
I said you can have whatever you like, if you like
Yeah

Baby I can give you anything you please
Even share my government cheese
And baby you can have as much as you like, if you like
I said you can go have as much as you like, if you like
Yeah
Title: Re: 130 football fields of cheese
Post by: Tassie Dave on August 15, 2019, 07:03:23 PM
To convert that to a number I can understand, that's about 33 real football fields of cheese  ;)
(Based on the MCG. Home of Aussie Rules footy)

That's a lot of cheese  ;D
Title: Re: 130 football fields of cheese
Post by: swan on August 15, 2019, 07:46:45 PM
Oh man... I remember when those 5 lb. bricks of government-labeled 'merican cheese started showing up everywhere in the early '80s. Maybe it differed by region, but they were giving so much of it away to poor folks that the surplus worked its way into the homes of most middle-class and even affluent folks. (Probably many factors at work there.) As a young teenager though I didn't mind all the grilled-cheese sandwiches that supply enabled. (Of course nearly four decades later I can almost have a heart attack just reminiscing about it.)

Sometimes I wonder if the Monolith from 2001: A Space Odyssey was actually just a sapient brick of government cheese from the far future. (Please don't tell Steve I said that! :) )
Title: Re: 130 football fields of cheese
Post by: arthwollipot on August 15, 2019, 07:54:28 PM
It's called the Strategic Cheese Reserve.
Title: Re: 130 football fields of cheese
Post by: daniel1948 on August 15, 2019, 08:21:54 PM
To convert that to a number I can understand, that's about 33 real football fields of cheese  ;)
(Based on the MCG. Home of Aussie Rules footy)

That's a lot of cheese  ;D

Is an Aussie Rules football field really four times the size of an American football field? Ours are 100 yards long and just over 50 yards wide. Are yours 200 yards by 100 yards? Or 73 yards square?

Oh, I just looked it up. There's no fixed size for an Aussie Rules field. But it does look as though they could be four times the size. And an Aussie Rules field is an oval.

There are more boring things than watching sports. But not many. JMO.
Title: Re: 130 football fields of cheese
Post by: arthwollipot on August 15, 2019, 08:31:41 PM
Aussie Rules is actually quite interesting to watch - more interesting than cricket, at any rate - but I suspect you have to know a bit about what's going on in order to make sense of it. I suggest watching with an Australian present to explain it. Preferably someone from Melbourne or Canberra. Certainly not someone from Sydney. But sit with your Sydney friend to watch Rugby League.
Title: Re: 130 football fields of cheese
Post by: Tassie Dave on August 15, 2019, 09:37:21 PM
Anyway we break it down that is a shit tonne of cheese  8)

To convert that to a number I can understand, that's about 33 real football fields of cheese  ;)
(Based on the MCG. Home of Aussie Rules footy)

That's a lot of cheese  ;D

Is an Aussie Rules football field really four times the size of an American football field? Ours are 100 yards long and just over 50 yards wide. Are yours 200 yards by 100 yards? Or 73 yards square?

Oh, I just looked it up. There's no fixed size for an Aussie Rules field. But it does look as though they could be four times the size. And an Aussie Rules field is an oval.

There are more boring things than watching sports. But not many. JMO.

All Aussie Rules grounds are dual purpose cricket (Spring-Summer) and football grounds (Autumn-Winter) with some overlap.

MCG is an oval. Playing area is 160 metres long x 141 metres wide (17 720 square metres)

American Football field is 4462 square metres. The MCG is 3.97 times larger.

Though I neglected to include the end zones. Up that to 5353 square metres. Which would make the MCG 3.3 times larger.

So I will adjust that to 39 Football fields of cheese.  ;)
Title: Re: 130 football fields of cheese
Post by: Captain Video on August 15, 2019, 10:19:16 PM
I have to argue that it is technically is not cheese.  It would not qualify in several countries. We admittedly have lower standards and still call it cheese.

I find this and the fact that the large amount we have in storage is being described in "sports field measurements" rather than square feet (or meters) very disappointing.

Cant we lay them end to end and see how much distance we can get or something? >:D
Title: Re: 130 football fields of cheese
Post by: Captain Video on August 15, 2019, 10:43:49 PM
Its my understanding that our taxes subsidize the dairy industry and turn the milk into powder which they then use to make the cheese.

Wouldn't it make more sense to take our milk surplus and make cheese that people would actually like to eat or other countries would want to buy? Maybe just some of it?

https://www.cnbc.com/2019/02/11/government-cheese-phenomenon-usda-american-cheese-surplus.html

Quote
The U.S. has too much cheese — 1.4 billion pounds of it to be exact.

To get some of that cheese off the market, the U.S. Department of Agriculture has spent $47.1 million buying up roughly 22 million pounds of it since 2016, according to a USDA spokesperson.

Title: Re: 130 football fields of cheese
Post by: Tassie Dave on August 16, 2019, 01:08:04 AM
Make America Grate Again  ;)

(https://i.imgur.com/jg1Lnu8.png)

US Meat and Cheese stockpile.

(https://i.imgur.com/2FCuu5h.png)

https://www.vox.com/science-and-health/2018/7/24/17606958/meat-cheese-surplus-visualized

Title: Re: 130 football fields of cheese
Post by: swan on August 16, 2019, 08:12:49 AM
US Meat and Cheese stockpile.

(https://i.imgur.com/2FCuu5h.png)

Geez, Congress must be really desperate to improve their approval rating... ;)
Title: Re: 130 football fields of cheese
Post by: amysrevenge on August 16, 2019, 10:40:35 AM
So there's a lettuce surplus too?  Can it be measured in swimming pools please?
Title: Re: 130 football fields of cheese
Post by: random poet on August 16, 2019, 10:43:52 AM
So there's a lettuce surplus too?  Can it be measured in swimming pools please?
Sorry, all we got is busses.
Title: Re: 130 football fields of cheese
Post by: daniel1948 on August 16, 2019, 12:06:11 PM
The problem with making cheese that people would actually want to eat is that any cheese you release for consumption would reduce the amount of cheese that people buy. And since the whole point of subsidies is to prop up the price, this would be counter-productive. They want to take the milk off the market. So making it into cheese few people would eat makes sense. Except that it would be cheaper to just dump the milk than to make it into cheese and put it into storage forever. Except that there's a political cost to dumping food in a world full of hungry people. Apparently just taking it off the market and storing it forever doesn't seem the same as destroying it.

I'm pretty sure that describing the quantity in terms of football fields was intended as humor.

They managed to subsidize corn prices by inventing the feed-lot system and convincing Americans that they need to eat obscene quantities of artificially-fattened cow meat. But apparently there's no analogous way to convert milk into a food product so inefficient that it cuts the quantity by 90% while preserving the value. So they make it into bad cheese and put it into storage.
Title: Re: 130 football fields of cheese
Post by: stands2reason on August 16, 2019, 01:45:16 PM
So they make it into bad cheese and put it into storage.

From what I've heard, the cheese is pretty good. It's not American cheese like you buy at the store, but usually a kind of cheddar.
Title: Re: 130 football fields of cheese
Post by: Captain Video on August 16, 2019, 01:49:02 PM
So they make it into bad cheese and put it into storage.

From what I've heard, the cheese is pretty good. It's not American cheese like you buy at the store, but usually a kind of cheddar.

its closer to Velveeta
Title: Re: 130 football fields of cheese
Post by: daniel1948 on August 16, 2019, 04:40:58 PM
So they make it into bad cheese and put it into storage.

From what I've heard, the cheese is pretty good. It's not American cheese like you buy at the store, but usually a kind of cheddar.

its closer to Velveeta

Velveeta isn't cheese. Which I guess is what you said upthread.
Title: Re: 130 football fields of cheese
Post by: Tatyana on August 17, 2019, 05:14:53 AM
You may mock the cheese caves now, but they may save humanity in a post-apocalyptic scenario.

 ;D
Title: Re: 130 football fields of cheese
Post by: daniel1948 on August 17, 2019, 10:43:25 AM
You may mock the cheese caves now, but they may save humanity in a post-apocalyptic scenario.

 ;D

And that's supposed to be a good thing?  ???
Title: Re: 130 football fields of cheese
Post by: Gigabyte on August 21, 2019, 12:42:03 PM
 :'(
Title: Re: 130 football fields of cheese
Post by: gebobs on August 27, 2019, 01:51:29 PM
Apparently the Trump tariffs are exacerbating the situation.

People make fun of him for wanting to buy Greenland. Personally, I don't think he's had a better idea. Everything else has been a clusterfark.
Title: Re: 130 football fields of cheese
Post by: random poet on August 27, 2019, 01:56:53 PM
Apparently the Trump tariffs are exacerbating the situation.

People make fun of him for wanting to buy Greenland. Personally, I don't think he's had a better idea. Everything else has been a clusterfark.
The reason anyone would want to buy Greenland is for the spectacular opportunity to dig for oil and other carbon-based fuels (both under the ice and in the north seas), which is the exact opposite of what we need to do right now. No, it is not his best idea. Leave that shit in the ground.
Title: Re: 130 football fields of cheese
Post by: daniel1948 on August 27, 2019, 05:02:07 PM
Apparently the Trump tariffs are exacerbating the situation.

People make fun of him for wanting to buy Greenland. Personally, I don't think he's had a better idea. Everything else has been a clusterfark.

It's not exactly flattering to say that the best idea a person has ever had is to buy Greenland. It's pretty much saying that he's a complete fucking moron. Which of course I agree with. No comment on which of his ideas is the least abominable. He's probably had one or two that are not as bad as mining Greenland for hydrocarbons.
Title: Re: 130 football fields of cheese
Post by: wastrel on August 27, 2019, 08:57:05 PM
Every time I see see this thread title I think "$240 worth of pudding"
Title: Re: 130 football fields of cheese
Post by: stands2reason on August 28, 2019, 08:59:39 AM
You may mock the cheese caves now, but they may save humanity in a post-apocalyptic scenario.

 ;D

And that's supposed to be a good thing?  ???

I pity any post-apocalyptic tribe that would actually have to survive on our giant cheese cache. And how long could they, anyways. I mean, at some point they would just feed the cheese to rats and eat the rats instead.
Title: Re: 130 football fields of cheese
Post by: gebobs on August 28, 2019, 09:54:50 AM
Apparently the Trump tariffs are exacerbating the situation.

People make fun of him for wanting to buy Greenland. Personally, I don't think he's had a better idea. Everything else has been a clusterfark.
The reason anyone would want to buy Greenland is for the spectacular opportunity to dig for oil and other carbon-based fuels (both under the ice and in the north seas), which is the exact opposite of what we need to do right now. No, it is not his best idea. Leave that shit in the ground.

I like the idea (tongue-firmly-in-cheek). I don't like the motivation. At all.
Title: Re: 130 football fields of cheese
Post by: daniel1948 on August 28, 2019, 10:04:13 AM
Instead of buying Greenland, how about we sell the United States to Greenland? For one dollar. It would have to be an improvement. Or we could sell the U.S. to Canada. That would be a tremendous improvement. Even selling the U.S. to Mexico would be an improvement over the way the country is run today.
Title: Re: 130 football fields of cheese
Post by: Shibboleth on August 28, 2019, 01:57:57 PM
I can only assume that the subject change is because Greenland is made out of cheese.
Title: Re: 130 football fields of cheese
Post by: daniel1948 on August 28, 2019, 04:22:34 PM
I can only assume that the subject change is because Greenland is made out of cheese.

I just figured there wasn't much more to say about 130 football fields of cheese so we might as well let the thread drift. But if Greenland is made out of cheese, buying it wouldn't make any sense at all. We already have too much cheese. A Greenland-size cheese wouldn't do us any good.
Title: Re: 130 football fields of cheese
Post by: arthwollipot on August 28, 2019, 07:52:34 PM
Instead of buying Greenland, how about we sell the United States to Greenland? For one dollar. It would have to be an improvement. Or we could sell the U.S. to Canada. That would be a tremendous improvement. Even selling the U.S. to Mexico would be an improvement over the way the country is run today.

But... but... sovereignty!
Title: Re: 130 football fields of cheese
Post by: daniel1948 on August 28, 2019, 08:50:15 PM
Instead of buying Greenland, how about we sell the United States to Greenland? For one dollar. It would have to be an improvement. Or we could sell the U.S. to Canada. That would be a tremendous improvement. Even selling the U.S. to Mexico would be an improvement over the way the country is run today.

But... but... sovereignty!

We'd still be in a sovereign country. We'd just be in one without a fucking rapist pustule of a baboon as its chief executive or the monstrously idiotic Electoral College which steals our elections with devastating regularity.
Title: Re: 130 football fields of cheese
Post by: gebobs on September 03, 2019, 09:49:43 AM
We'd still be in a sovereign country. We'd just be in one without a fucking rapist pustule of a baboon as its chief executive or the monstrously idiotic Electoral College which steals our elections with devastating regularity.

The electoral college is an anachronism. So is the 2nd amendment and the Constitution as far as amendments are are passed. In 230 years, there have been just 17 passed and one is the repeal of another so really 15 in effect.