Farm Subsidies Seem Immune to an Overhaul

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So all the talk a few weeks ago was just blathering for soundbite purposes, and nothing is going to change. Can I request my third party again? A political party not beholden to conservative, corporate interests? For the nth time: a pox on both their houses.

Farm Subsidies Seem Immune to an Overhaul - New York Times:
For the many critics of farm subsidies, including President Bush and Speaker Nancy Pelosi, this seemed like the ideal year for Congress to tackle the federal payments long criticized as enriching big farm interests, violating trade agreements and neglecting small family farms.

Many crop prices are at or near record highs. Concern over the country’s dependence on foreign oil has sent demand for corn-based ethanol soaring. European wheat fields have been battered by too much rain. And market analysts are projecting continued boom years for American farmers into the foreseeable future.

But as the latest farm bill heads to the House floor on Thursday, farm-state lawmakers seem likely to prevail in keeping the old subsidies largely in place, drawing a veto threat on Wednesday from the White House.

A veto threat from the White House? Laughable. Unless one of the farm subsidies was for stem cell research, I sincerely doubt Bush will veto anything.

Faced with fierce opposition from the House Agriculture Committee, Ms. Pelosi and other Democratic leaders lowered their sights and are now backing the committee’s bill, in part to protect freshman lawmakers from rural areas who may be vulnerable in the 2008 elections.

Instead, Ms. Pelosi helped to secure more modest changes, pushing the committee to provide $1.8 billion for programs that aid fruit and vegetable growers, generating support from lawmakers in states like Florida and California, Ms. Pelosi’s home, and deflating some traditional opposition to the farm bill.

Always an excuse, and the beat goes on.

Food Fight: The Citizen's Guide to a Food and Farm Bill
“Food Fight: The Citizen's Guide to a Food and Farm Bill” (Daniel Imhoff)

The Omnivore's Dilemma: A Natural History of Four Meals
“The Omnivore's Dilemma: A Natural History of Four Meals” (Michael Pollan)

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Corn subsidies, for instance, are killing us, slowly.Unlikely allies take aim at federal farm subsidies -- 742 pages of the 2007 farm bill address everything from land conservation and food stamps to school snacks and foreign aid... Read More

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This page contains a single entry by swanksalot published on July 26, 2007 9:21 AM.

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