One Cotton Picking Minute


A small bit of largely-neglected good news cropped up last week when Congress quietly eliminated cotton subsidies, which had been deemed in violation of treaty obligations by the WTO following a protest from Brazil.

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  2. So? What audience is that Valentine’s ad directed at?

  3. Is the Valentine model a libertarian?

  4. OMG! Hell has frozen over. There is hope for humanity after all as yet another libertarian goal has miraculously been reached. Or almost reached. Bush still has to sign it into law it seems.

    One stupid law down, 99,999 to go.

  5. hj0,

    What’s with the negativity? Baby steps.


  6. Ok, positivity. ๐Ÿ™‚ Here goes:

    This is not a baby step. It is the opening wedge in the battle to end a third-rail of politics, namely agricultural subsidies. If it can happen to cotton, it can happen to them all. If and when they (agricultural subsidies) are gone then several influential states suddenly no longer are allies in the battle for robbing from Peter to pay Paul. Indeed they may say, “Hey, if you are going to take away our subsidies, you should take away others’ too.”

    And if politicians see you can end a third-rail program without dying (i.e. getting thrown out of office), then it might embolden them to take on others.

  7. Wow – is that it? *All* federally-funded cotton subsidies have just been eliminated?

    I would expect to see some kind of reaction or something from someone somewhere! (I mean, aside from the appropriately happy reactions here.)

  8. A little research:

    Congress just enacted legislation to cut the “Step 2” program, which pays cotton millers and exporters extra money, presumably to offset the cost of buying domestic cotton.

    In 2004 the program payed $264 million out to a few hundred companies. 61% of that went to 10 companies. Read a breakdown here:

    According to Oxfam (quoted by Reason in the past), US cotton producers and consumers get about $4 billion in federal subsidies per year.

    So it seems fair to say that the elimination of Step 2 is a good start.

  9. I have nothing to say about the cotton, I’m just chirping my support of the new Valentine’s ad campaign. That was a pleasant surprise, after all these years of CHM.

  10. So does this mean that hot Reason? interns are for sale now?

  11. I wonder if that means the Pima out here (Phoenix) are going to stop growing cotton. I don’t what else they could grow instead, it’s so damn hot here in the summer.

  12. A lack of subsidized cotton could result in a shortage of clothing.

    Which means that Reason Pillow Girl (RPG!) will have to continue hanging around in just her underwear and nothing else.

  13. Ah, but is the RPG’s underwear and pillow made of partially unsubsidized cotton? Putting money where her politics are?

  14. The Reason Pillow Girl almost made me forget about the return of th Carpet Humping Man.

  15. I wonder if that means the Pima out here (Phoenix) are going to stop growing cotton.

    The world market for high-quality cotton is where US growers can compete. To date, our subsidies have encouraged quantity over quality…High quality cotton is in short supply where the spinners and mills are: china , SEasia, and India. Lower quality cotton can be grown anywhere. Pima growers should be just fine.

    Bayer is one chemical company flogging this view

  16. Will “joshua corning” now want a black reason intern?

  17. The world is aflame over a Mohammed cartoon. Iran is working on the bomb. Our country is facing a record deficit. There is no end in sight for the Iraq conflict.

    But somehow, the Reason Pillow Girl makes everything allright.

    I keep hitting my “refresh” button in disbelief. I’m having trouble wrapping my mind around it. A….female…not..shirtless..scowling..dude..female…attractive female….no shirtless dude…is it real…female…girl…no bald dude…is it real…she must be a guy!!

  18. I don’t want to burst any bubbles, but the RPG’s face looks… er, um… a wee bit photoshopped. Something about the way the chin meets the neck. Could reason be pulling a fast one on us commentators, disguising a totally butterfaced intern using poor photoshop skills? I hope not.

  19. Randolph, if it were Photoshop, I think the artist would have done a better job covering up the black roots of the blonde hair.

  20. just a drop in an agro-bucket of unbelievable size — at least it’s a drop, but don’t anyone get complacent over it. this is a measure to placate the g-22 in the wto, and nothing more. the philosophy — impoverish small economies through lavish largesse to domestic agro-business/political patrons — remains intact.

    the real step forward is that someone in the bush admin didn’t come forward shouting about how we should treat the wto just like those dirty bastards at the un.

  21. Jennifer, you obviously don’t spend enough time in Ocean City, MD. Roots and bleched hair are HAWT! Anyways, I’m not convinced. I’ll need a full photo shoot from the pillow girl before I make any real decisions here.

  22. The roots make me wish she’d left her hair alone, but hooray for the RPG anyway! Even if she’d be hotter brunette.

  23. What I’m concerned about is that RPG will be gone after Valentine’s Day.

    I want her to come back with Easter bunny-ears. Actually, I demand it. NEVER GO BACK! If we are subjected again to only looking at scowling, shirtless men, there will be a revolt more angry then a cartoon diaper-head.

  24. Would it be more or less offensive if we dressed her up like the Prophet?

  25. Yes, but the question that’s begging to be answered is whether or not RPG likes cupcakes.

  26. “Would it be more or less offensive if we dressed her up like the Prophet?”

    Which results in more hilarity.

    That’s the question you should be asking.

  27. Yes, but the question that’s begging to be answered is whether or not RPG likes cupcakes.

    She might, but it doesn’t appear that she eats very many.

  28. Cool,
    The price should be coming down on those “Boys are stupid. Throw rocks at them” Tee-shirts.

    The increased sales in shirts and rocks will create economic growth. We’ll be able to pay for the war in Iraq with enough left over to search for bin Laden.

  29. David: Yes, maybe we need to form a coalition for feeding the hungry RPG and dying her hair back to its natural shade. Save the RPG!

  30. Ugh. RPG is the most boring, generic looking bikini model ever. If anything, she will cause me to cancel my subscription that I don’t have yet.

  31. Holy fucking shit. This is jaw-dropping news. I’m sparking a joint in celebration. I wonder if I can find cotton rolling papers?

  32. Aw, come on. RPG is not an unattainable beauty; rather she is cute and fresh and has the sexiness of youth. Who cares if her roots show a little? I’d much rather look at her than Ultimate Fitness Guy.

  33. Hopefully, the freaking sugar subsidy is next. I’m tired of heading down to Chinatown to buy a decent bottle of Coke imported from Mexico.

  34. BTW, I believe it’s actually an intended look right now to not bleach one’s hair all the way to the roots. Or so I hear

  35. I was under the impression that the girl was just some generic ad, from like blogads or whatever service reason uses, that was then personalized a little.

  36. dead_elvis, I believe this is the “Hottest Girl in the Class” phenomenon at work. Take any given class. In it will be women of varying degrees of attractiveness. Yet, no matter how unattractive the best-looking girl is on an absolute scale, she will enthrall you during class. Thus, RPG, being all that we have, is making many here lose control of their bodily functions. Fortunately, my girlfriend makes me temporarily immune ๐Ÿ™‚ Though I will note that I think RPG is reasonably attractive. I would’ve selected someone with larger tracts of land, but that’s just me.

    This applies only to men, I believe.

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