Weenies and cry babies
As election time nears you can’t help but be hit by one of the sad sack stories, or ads about the Federal Farm bill now in limbo in Congress.
You see, the Farm Bill, which authorizes most of the spending done by the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture (USDA), must be renewed every five years. The House of Representatives allowed the 2008 Farm Bill to expire on September 30th and pushed off passage of the 2012 Farm Bill until after the elections.
The Food, Conservation, and Energy Act of 2008 was a $288 billion, five-year agricultural policy bill was a continuation of the 2002 Farm Bill. It continues the United States’ long history of agricultural subsidy as well as pursuing areas such as energy, conservation, nutrition, and rural development. Some specific initiatives in the bill include increases in Food Stamp benefits, increased support for the production of cellulosic ethanol, and money for the research of pests, diseases and other agricultural problems.
That all sounds good on the surface, except, in the dairy business, the government subsidies have artificially kept milk prices where liberals think they should be. The small, inefficient dairy farms benefit the most, propping up prices to ensure the survival of the less than fittest.
In short, the old days of small dairy farms has really passed, but the government has interfered with milk prices for so long that some farmers rely on them for survival. This flies in the face of capitalism and good business, but when has the government ever cared about good business sense?
Of course, New York Senator Kirsten Gillibrand and ultra liberal Charles Schumer are all in favor of shoving the new, more expensive bill through, even though no one knows where the money for certain “programs” is coming from.
Schumer even came through last week threatening $6 per gallon milk unless the new Farm Bill is shoved down everyone’s throats ASAP.
We talk the talk when it comes to reigning in the government deficit, but even the mighty Farm Bureau guys are pushing for their share of the bloated government pie.
Bad weather, loss of some crops, rely on the government to prop up your lack of foresight; Lose fruit because of weather changes, cry for government aid; Markets move to another part of the country due to weather or market shifts, have the government throw money at the situation; You have a farmer that thought gambling on skipping plant insurance was a good idea, bail them out; global markets grow and provide certain food items at more competitive pricing, scream foul.
Mind you, it never was this way many decades ago, but over the years politicians turned to weather (or other disaster) passing new laws and creating new “for grants” that allowed for all to boost up any losses.
Unfortunately, we were all sold the bill of goods that it wasn’t simply about getting some politician’s ass reelected, rather it was about keeping precious milk, apples, corn, beans on our tables at livable prices. If food prices rise, politicians are taken to task.
We are just as much to blame as the farmer who wants government bail-outs. We say nothing, as long as we get ours.