Regarding "Wells sucked dry" (July 8, Page A-1): Your reporter noted a false choice between crops and friendships. That assumes that a rational person would not do everything is his power to salvage crops already in the ground.
In our water environment, it is increasingly difficult for a famer to have faith his government or the regulatory maze to look after his interests. Consider:
Springtime unrestricted flow proposals are projected to cost the Turlock and Modesto Irrigation Districts 250,000 acre feet per year. (Please don't mention water rights licensing requirements, for your dam will get around those.)
At least 700,000 acre feet went out the Golden Gate in spring 2013 rather than into the San Luis Reservoir. We saved 132 Delta smelt and fallowed plus or minus 200,000 acres.
A word on Roger and Pat Smith as neighbors: Excellent operators, clean and high yielding fields, a soft touch for every community activity. Work? If you are going to outwork them, I suggest you bring an extra lunch and a lantern; you're going to have a long day! Good people just trying to farm.