Monday, May 01, 2006

Farmers at the Trough

Farm subsidies are precisely one reason farmers in third world countires can't compete. A good book I have read in this regard is the following: The Travels of a T-Shirt in the Global Economy : An Economist Examines the Markets, Power, and Politics of World Trade

Farmers at the Trough: "FARM SUBSIDIES have risen from $8 billion in 1997 to a projected $22 billion this year. Farm earnings have risen, too. Net farm income grew from $36 billion in 2002 to a record $83 billion in 2004. Although that fell last year to $72 billion and is forecast to drop again in 2006, to $56.2 billion, that's still above the 10-year average.

But why let good news stand in the way of even more payments to farmers? The Senate is poised to add $4 billion in 'disaster' payments to farmers as part of the emergency spending bill it's debating. A big chunk would go to farmers who have suffered no other disaster than the high energy prices that are hitting every other sector of the economy -- not to mention anyone who drives a car."

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