Not the News ?

by John Quiggin on July 19, 2006

Today’s NYT runs an Associated Press story headed Farmers Use Bull Semen to Inseminate Cows, which reports, as news, the fact that dairy farmers use artificial insemination on a large scale.

Next they’ll be telling us that milkmaids face unemployment due to the introduction of milking machines.

Since I’ve given the setup, feel free to lower the tone in comments.



jet 07.19.06 at 10:30 pm

So can you see the crotchety old mad bull sitting at a bar stool mumbling about the good old days when farmers depended on him to work day and night all through Spring? Oh how the ladies loved him.


Jim Harrison 07.19.06 at 10:38 pm

“Now Science is getting honey from the bees” –ancient Mad magazine version of a typical article in Scientific American


cw 07.19.06 at 10:51 pm

Farmers also reguarly inseminate milkmaids, but not with bull semen.


Ben 07.19.06 at 11:38 pm

Looks like a standard case of “News by Press Release,” probably issued by the National Association of Animal Breeders (See second paragraph).

Either Mr. Doak (the NAAB Pres., again second paragraph)) is up for reelection or some regulation (a semen tax perhaps?) is coming down the legislative pipeline. This is just something for the press clipping files and so the PR agency can say they got something in the NYT.

Move along folks, nothing to see here.


Laura 07.19.06 at 11:47 pm

When I lived in Warrnambool in the 1980s the phone exchange gave us a number until recently belonging to the local artificial insemination co-op. Farmers used to ring us up and without preamble demand to know “got any sperm left? Ours was all burned in the [bush]fires.”


The Continental Op 07.20.06 at 12:55 am

About 20 years ago, when I was living in England, I went to visit a friend at her home in the Midlands. Her father was a farmer, and he subscribed to various agricultural publications. This headline on one of them caught my attention: “American Bull Semen On Its Way”. I guess poor old John Bull was just all wanked out.


bad Jim 07.20.06 at 3:40 am

My Iowa-born father used to tell a joke about a teenage boy who’d plugged himself into a milking machine and couldn’t get loose. His frantic father phoned the vendor for help, and was told “Fan him and feed him; it’s set for ten quarts.”


Daniel 07.20.06 at 6:07 am

A minor piece of personal trivia; a piece I wrote for the Guardian “Comment Is Free” blog in defence of Rebecca Loos on the grounds that “if she hadn’t wanked that pig, it would still have needed to be wanked and so somebody would have had to wank it” was rejected; can’t think why.


Ginger Yellow 07.20.06 at 7:38 am

So, basically, it was a dirty handjob, but somebody had to do it?


Daniel 07.20.06 at 8:49 am

I think that if I’d thought of that joke they might have printed it.


Clint 07.20.06 at 8:49 am

Back home in Montana, the local semen supply business gave its employees pick-ups with “We Stand Behind Every Cow We Service” painted in big script on the side.


Ernst Harlow 07.20.06 at 9:01 am

Well, I, for one, want to hearld this great technological advance. Now that “Farmers Use Bull Semen to Inseminate Cows,” the farmers wives are probably happier, and the breeding might be more successful, too.


James herriot 07.20.06 at 9:45 am

The funniest thing ever written re artificial insemination> chapter 26 of ” the lord god made them all.”


Hattie 07.21.06 at 1:42 am

Thanks for a good laugh. I appreciate it. And that’s no bull.

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