The Secret Farm Bill

The Republican-manufactured budget crisis of this past summer — remember? — resulted in a “solution” that’s hijacking what little representative democratic process we have left. Equally sad is that the so-called supercommittee — charged with creating an outline for reducing the deficit by $1.2 trillion over 10 years — may preclude full discussion of the farm bill.

It’s the farm bill that largely shapes food and agriculture policy, and — though much of it finances good programs — ultimately supports the cynical, profit-at-any-cost food system that drives obesity, astronomical health care costs, ethanol-driven agriculture and more, creating further deficits while punishing the environment.

The farm bill is written every five years. Although the current one doesn’t expire until September, the next one may be all but wrapped up by your first bite of turkey, because the leaders of the House and Senate agriculture committees — a group of four, representing Oklahoma, Michigan, Minnesota and Kansas (do you see a pattern here?) — are working feverishly to draw up a proposal in time to submit it to the supercommittee before the Nov. 23 deadline.

Read the rest of this column here.

Posted in Farming, Food Politics

3 Comments

  1. RodneyEqEx said...

    While I worry about what the super committee will do vis-a-vis the Farm Bill I also hope that legislators can use the opportunity of the debt crisis to eliminate, or dramatically reduce, some of the unhelpful ag subsidies that keep taking our food system – and national diet – further and further down the wrong road.Not only can they point to the national consensus that gov’t spending needs to be reigned in, they can also blame the super-committee and the House/White House agreement for the cuts.

  2. keurigshop said...

    Great post! http://www.TheKeurigShop.com

  3. landisr said...

    I cannot express how much I appreciated this particular column. I have a copy of the House Ag recommendations to the SC, and I’m hoping you’ll be able to to keep us updated.

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