Lawmakers must be hoping voters are lost in a corn maze somewhere and can’t figure out what Congress is doing with their money. That’s the only explanation for the slick double cross that a bipartisan group of integrity-challenged senators are trying to pull. The NYT nails this disturbing story:
It seems a rare act of civic sacrifice: in the name of deficit reduction, lawmakers from both parties are calling for the end of a longstanding agricultural subsidy that puts about $5 billion a year in the pockets of their farmer constituents. Even major farm groups are accepting the move, saying that with farmers poised to reap bumper profits, they must do their part.
But in the same breath, the lawmakers and their farm lobby allies are seeking to send most of that money — under a new name — straight back to the same farmers, with most of the benefits going to large farms that grow commodity crops like corn, soybeans, wheat and cotton. In essence, lawmakers would replace one subsidy with a new one.
American farm subsidies are a shame and a disgrace. According to the Times report, Farm households earn substantially more than other Americans; large farmers, who get the most from subsidy programs, make more than $200,000 a year.If senators can’t bring themselves to slash programs like these, and are dishonest enough to try to cover their tracks, there are a lot of incumbents in both parties who need to be sent home in disgrace.