Night of the Farming Dead

Sometimes these things just write themselves:

The U.S. Agriculture Department has been paying farm subsidies to thousands of people who are dead, in some cases for many years, say congressional investigators.

(Semi-literally) grisly details about what it's like on farms where the rooster crows not just at dawn, but the dawn of the dead.

A report by the Government Accountability Office says USDA paid $1.1 billion in subsidies to 172,801 dead people between 1999 through 2005. Forty percent of that money went to people who had been for at least three years, the report found.

Nineteen percent went to individuals who had been dead for at least seven years.

In a case involving an Illinois farm, USDA made $400,000 in payments from 1999 through 2005 in the name of someone who died in 1995, the report said.

Check out reason's appropriately titled "Six Reasons to Kill Farm Subsidies" and much, much more on farm policy here.

Also, apparently there's a movie called Zombie Farm. Does the U.S.D.A. know something we don't? And are they in cahoots with Hollywood?

Via Mark Lambert

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  • ||

    Any idea what happened to the money? I RTFA but it didn't mention it.

    One competent auditor may be able to free up some of that money, if someone hasn't already run off with it (which I assume is the case).

  • ||

    And Michael Moore wants these people to run health care.

  • ||

    One competent auditor may be able to free up some of that money

    "Well, it was a grueling six months, gentlemen, but I've finally got all of that ridiculous subsidy money accounted for and ready to return to the taxpaye...hey, what's so funny guys?"

  • ed||

    And Michael Moore wants these people to run health care.

    Maybe so, Michael P, but under Moore's plan, there will be no dead people to pay.
    We'll live forever! Happy and healthy! For free!

  • ||

    This idea that the undead don't need money is ludicrous and offensive.

  • ||

    I can see it being "Farmer Brown kacked and his wife or son continued to file the required welfare paperwork in dead dad's name"

    One of the keys to dealing with the government these days is not calling attention to yourself if you can help it, lest they love you to death like Lenny Small outta "Grapes of Wrath" (or is it Elmyra Duff offa "Tiny Toons"?)

  • ||

    Wow. I gotta see that. The first horror movie inspired by the WoT.

    Hell has been unleashed on the small town of Muerto Verde when inbred cannibal farmers are turned into zombies after Taliban warriors poison the local water supply. The only hope for humanity are two FBI agents and four party-crazed college students.

    Now I understand why we fight!

  • ||

    And Michael Moore wants these people to run health care.

    I'm not sure about that - farm subsidies are a Republican welfare scheme. He'd probably prefer a different group of people to run healh care.

  • ||

    There's also Invasion of the Blood Farmers!

    They planted the LIVING and harvested the DEAD!

  • Lincoln||

    Wait just a second here guys. This sounds like payoff money to me. What makes more sense: the federal government is incompetent or the federal government is secretly providing for our zombie protection until a greedy politician accidentally exposes the horrible truth - dooming us until the swashbuckling Obama\Giuliani hybrid fights off the horde with a bible launching crossbow? I thought so.

    Look - I will be the first to sell out my limited government principles in the face of a zombie apocalypse. If it takes wearing Milton Friedman's corpse to blend in then that's what it takes. Never forget!

  • ||

    Dan T(oohey) said: "farm subsidies are a Republican welfare scheme"

    Are you saying that Democrats running for president don't have early primary elections in Iowa? Or that they're all high-minded people who can resist the temptation to pander? Or that all the Democratic presidential candidates came out early, loudly, and often in favor of ending these stupid subsiddies? Or that these subsidies vanished when Clinton, Carter, etc. vetoed them, only to be resurrected when a Republican got back into the White House? Or that the new Democratic majorities in Congress promised to end farm subsidies?

    If you're gonna play Devil's Advocate, Dan, try thinking first whether what you're saying comports at all with reality.

  • Episiarch||

    There's also Invasion of the Blood Farmers!

    I never thought I would encounter another person who has seen that movie (other than the people who watched it with me). Just one more reason to heart Reason. It brings us together!

  • Sal Paradise||

    "farm subsidies are a Republican welfare scheme""

    The New Deal was a Republican scheme? I missed that one in my history books.

    Both parties are more than happy to buy votes with farm subsidies.

  • ||

    farm subsidies are a Republican logrolling welfare scheme

    Fixed that.

  • ||

    If you're gonna play Devil's Advocate, Dan, try thinking first whether what you're saying comports at all with reality.


    Do not fee the trolls.

  • ||

    Do not fee the trolls.

    There goes my livelihood.

  • ed||

    Try farming!

  • troll||

    brains....brains.....

  • ||

    "...U.S. Agriculture Department..."
    "...USDA paid $1.1 billion in subsidies to 172,801 dead people between 1999 through 2005."

    Well written article, huh?

  • ||

    Episiarch,

    I was lucky (and old enough) to have a video store near my house that bought everything that ever came out on VHS. I've seen many, many wonderfully bad movies.

  • ||

    I just took a look at the Blood Farmers trivia on imdb:

    # According to the director, most of the cast members worked for a six-pack of beer as payment.

    # The film was shot over three weekends, with a $24,000 budget. It never made its money back.


    Awesome!

  • ||

    He'd probably prefer a different group of people to run healh care.



    Actually, the same union-member beaurocrats run government agencies regardless of who is in charge, with the exception of a politically appointed figurehead. And I am sure the last thing in the world Michael Moore supports is getting rid of unionized government workers.

    Or did you think that G. W. Bush and members of congress actually make out subsidy checks themselves in their spare time?

  • ||

    bureaucrats. The word is bureaucrats.

    If you're going to base your entire worldview around fear and loathing of a group of people, fer chrissakes learn to spell the word.

  • ||

    Or did you think that G. W. Bush and members of congress actually make out subsidy checks themselves in their spare time?

    No, they hire someone else to do it.

  • Episiarch||

    SugarFree,

    I am lucky enough to have a friend who is a horror movie expert, and has a circle of like-minded enthusiasts who manage to find and expose me to some truly great and truly awful movies.

    Truly awful movies are an acquired taste, but very satisfying once you approach them the right way.

  • The Wine Commonsewer®||

    farm subsidies are a Republican welfare scheme

    Which would explain why Bu-shitler's Ag Secy recently proposed cutting off subsidies for any farmers earning more than 200k per year.

  • ||

    Obscure movies are not always bad. I actually bought John Landis' first film.

  • ||

    jh,

    I used to think Dan played "devil's advocate," but he's admitted to being a troll (he said it was "fun" and I can only imagine he giggled as he typed it). He has a solidly documented reputation as being dishonest (deliberately misrepresenting people's arguments). I only came to my senses last week (I'm kind of slow). It really is best to ignore him.

  • ||

    If you're going to base your entire worldview around fear and loathing of a group of people, fer chrissakes learn to spell the word.

    joe never actually debates me... he either complains about my spelling, or accuses me of being paranoid. Sometimes both.

    For the record, I am not afraid of bureaucrats... I am afraid of the people with guns and combat boots and closeted hatred of brown people that are usually called to enforce the will of those bureaucrats.

    If the bureaucrats wanted to start a voluntary commune, where every detail of life could be bureaucraticly controlled, and recorded on paper in triplicate, more power to them! I would even fight and give my life for their right to live out their twisted, demented fantasies!

    You see, I respect your right to self-oppression joe! I just wish you people could keep your subconcious longing for a father-figure from interfering in my life.

  • ||

    Forty percent of that money went to people who had been for at least three years, the report found.

    Nineteen percent went to individuals who had been dead for at least seven years.


    So? 72% of congressional salaries (not counting pensions) go to congresspersons who have been brain dead for 10 years or longer.

  • ||

    Rex Rhino

    Just wondering. To which union do the bureaucrats running government programs belong?

  • ||

    Just wondering. To which union do the bureaucrats running government programs belong?



    American Federation of Government Employees, AFL-CIO.
    American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees, AFL-CIO.
    Service Employees International Union, AFL-CIO.
    American Postal Workers Union, APWU
    National Association of Letter Carriers, NALC
    National Postal Mail Handlers Union, NPMHU National Rural Letter Carriers Association, NRLCA
    National Association of Postmasters, NAPUS
    National Association of Postal Supervisors, NAPS
    National League of Postmasters

    These are just a few. Virtually all government workers are unionized.

  • ||

    Say, I just read something that suggested that many, if not most, unions peg pay (or pay increases) to the federal minimum wage. Is that true?

  • ||

    Rex Rhino

    I'm pretty sure that the guys RUNNING the programs don't belong to those unions listed. Am I wrong?

  • ||

    I'm pretty sure that the guys RUNNING the programs don't belong to those unions listed. Am I wrong?



    Yes... I explicitly mentioned the whole politically appointed figureheads thing. But the people who write the checks for farm subsidies for dead people, and the people who are going to reject your kids request for an MRI after he bangs up his knee playing hockey, are most certainly lifetime unionized government employees. Neither one has to worry about losing their job for either decision, and Michael Moore most certainly doesn't want to replace those people.

  • ||

    The film was shot over three weekends, with a $24,000 budget. It never made its money back.

    Of course movie not make money back. Zombie eat brains, not zucchini.

  • ||

    Rex Rhino

    First, many of those employees are not union members. My mother spent many years working for the Small Business Administration working her way up from a secretarial position to become a senior loan officer. She wouldn't be caught dead belonging to a union.

    Second, during her years as a government official I am aware of people who lost their positions for cause. I have belonged to several unions over the years and have yet to find one that could (or would want to) protect the jobs of people who didn't perform their jobs.

    Third, some government employees take pride in in making good use of the funds they are responsible for and genuinely care for their clients. However,they are only as good and efficient as the policies of the agency for which they work.

  • S.A. Miller||

    Say, I just read something that suggested that many, if not most, unions peg pay (or pay increases) to the federal minimum wage. Is that true?

    It is true. This is the real reason for the push to increase the min wage, it is a backdoor raise for all the unions.

  • ||

    Grains...graaaaiinss...

  • ||

    lest they love you to death like Lenny Small outta "Of Mice and Men"

    FTFY, but I get the point

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