Friday, May 16, 2008

Hodes supports "Disgraceful" Farm Bill "Scam"

Most days, you can't get the NY Times and Wall Street Journal editorial pages to agree on the color of the sky. But this morning, they join together in denouncing the indefensible Farm Bill approved by Paul Hodes, Nancy Pelosi, and far too many members of both parties this week.

Here's the Times:
Congress has approved a $307 billion farm bill that rewards rich farmers who do not need the help while doing virtually nothing to help the world’s hungry, who need all the help they can get.

President Bush should keep his promise to veto it and demand better legislation.

The bill is an inglorious piece of work tailored to the needs of big agriculture and championed by not only the usual bipartisan farm state legislators but also the Democratic leaders, including Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. Every five years we get a new farm bill, and each time we are reminded that even reformers like Ms. Pelosi cannot resist the blandishments and power of the farmers.

And the Journal:
Ms. Pelosi calls the bill "real reform," which is like calling Lindsay Lohan born again. For example: The bill perpetuates the so-called Hurricane Katrina gambit that allows farmers to lock in price-support payments at the lowest possible market price, and then sell their crops later at the highest possible price, and then pocket the high price and a payment from the government for the difference between the two. They in effect get paid twice for the same bushel of wheat.

A bigger scam is the new income limit to qualify for subsidies. Mr. Bush sought a $200,000 annual income cap, but Congress can't bring itself to go below $750,000. Even that is a farce, because it doesn't include loan programs and disaster payments, and it allows spouses to qualify for payments too. The White House and liberal reformers calculate that farm owners with clever accountants can have incomes of up to $2.5 million and still get a taxpayer handout.

Higher food prices, corporate welfare, and hurting the environment. That's Paul Hodes $300 Billion farm policy. Keep this in mind every time you buy groceries between now and November.

No comments: