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Sallie James offers up a plan for killing farm subsidies.

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  • Robert||

    Interesting. Of course lines will have to be drawn, pitting those who were farming this farm at time 0 for eligibility for payments, which will lead to a speculative bubble. But it's worth it. Best to buy off practically all potential opposition, no matter the cost.

  • ||

    Only a cynical person would believe that the farmers would take the buyout money, and then come back in the next election and demand reinstatement of subsidies from farm-state (farm-statist?) politicians -- without returning the "buyout" money.

  • ||

    I spent two and a half years examining the American political process. All that time I was looking for a straightforward issue. But everything I investigated - election campaigns, the budget, lawmaking, the court system, bureaucracy, social policy - turned out to be more complicated than I had thought. There were always angles I hadn't considered, aspects I hadn't weighed, complexities I'd never dreamed of. Until I got to agriculture. Here at last is a simple problem with a simple solution. Drag the omnibus farm bill behind the barn, and kill it with an ax.

    P. J. O'Rourke

  • ||

    Here's betting American farmers will use panic over contaminants in Chinese imports to wring more money out of taxpayers.

  • ||

    The irony of farm programs is that farmers don't benefit from them, even though the benefit to "family farmers" is how they are sold to American taxpayers. Farm payments are rather quickly capitalized into higher farmland costs (rent or price), farm machinery, pesticides, fertilizer, seed, labor, fuel, etc. simply rise in price enough to absorb the subsidy and the farmer finds himself back where he started. The true beneficiaries are those who own land and those who sell goods and services to farmers.

    Most farmers (I'm one) understand this and would support ending farm subsidies, but, in another irony, true farmers are rarely seen on the Hill testifying, just commodity group lackeys.

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