Farm Bill gets wave of support from outdoor community

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Kudos to the Sentinel for Dave Buchanan’s informative report:  “Farm Bill gets wave of support from outdoor community”.

In addition to ameliorating the draconian cuts to the Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program (“Food Stamps”) sought by “Teapublicans” (including our own Scott Tipton), H.R. 2642 – the five-year $956 billion “Federal Agriculture Reform and Risk Management Act of 2014” (renamed the “Agricultural Act of 2014”) – funded multiple worthwhile “conservation” programs (while cutting overall appropriations therefor). 

However, as Buchanan’s opening reference to “guarded support” – and the Sentinel’s editorial opinion—“Farm Bill yields mixed bag of reform”(January 30, 2014)—suggest,
the 2014 Farm Bill aptly illustrates the costs taxpayers must bear for sound policies when disingenuous “conservatives” extort enactment of bad policies as the price for their votes.

Thus, first, while the 2014 Farm Bill ends the “direct” subsidy program (under which Congressmen receiving payments were required to disclose them), it substituted an even more expensive “indirect” subsidy program (payments from which Congressmen are not required to disclose, thanks to Tipton and his cronies on the House Ag Committee).

Second, with “fraud, waste, and abuse” more rampant in farm subsidy programs than in any other federal “entitlement” program – and with median household income in the U.S. at $51,000 – the law now authorizes subsidy payments to corporate farms and millionaire farmers earning up to $900,000 (after deducting all expenses incurred in “farming”).

Third, H.R. 2642 also protects Republicans’ favored groups (only) from the vagaries of the venerated “free market”—by creating an insurance program to protect farmers against price fluctuations, while guaranteeing insurers a 16% profit.
Fourth, in order to continue gratuitous and legally dubious subsidies to water-wasting cotton farmers, we will continue to annually pay Brazil $147.3 million – bribing Brazil
to suspend its illegal agricultural subsidies case before the World Trade Organization.


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