Baylen Linnekin on the Case Against Taxpayer-Funded Crop Insurance


The Farm Bill, that quintessentially quinquennial congressional replenishment of the pork trough from which many of America's farmers indulge, is now upon us. Late last month the bill, dubbed the Agriculture Reform, Food and Jobs Act of 2012, cleared what will likely be its biggest hurdle when the bipartisan Senate Agriculture Committee voted 16-5 in its favor. The good news is that direct farm subsidies are on their way out. But as Baylen Linnekin explains, that fact, which should be a cause for celebration, is instead just a case of shifting billions of taxpayer dollars from one needless federal agricultural scam to another. For as billions in direct subsidies die a worthy death, bipartisan efforts in Congress (mainly via the powerful Senate Ag Committee) could hand farmers billions of new dollars in indirect subsidies—in the form of taxpayer-funded crop insurance.