Independent Student Newspaper Since 1969

The Badger Herald

Independent Student Newspaper Since 1969

The Badger Herald

Independent Student Newspaper Since 1969

The Badger Herald


Farm Bill reform badly needed

This year marks the passing of another farm bill and another
opportunity to reform outdated and unfair subsidy policies. The decision to
subsidize farmers was a result of post-WWII economic hardships and the U. S. government’s
need to support domestic agricultural efforts. Fifty years later, however,
these intentions are being distorted on a massive scale with 95 percent of
subsidies going to 10 percent of the farmers in America. This has serious
implications both domestically and internationally, since the amount of
subsidies a farmer receives increases as production increases. 

This gives an
unfair advantage to big agro-business while simultaneously flooding the
international market with the goods Americans can’t consume and therefore,
forcing down the price of the same goods sold by developing nations. 

Thankfully, it’s not too late as the 2007 Farm Bill won’t be voted on in the Senate
until Tuesday. It would reform this system by limiting subsidies to $250,000
per farmer, thereby leveling the playing field and reducing overproduction. It
is urgent that everyone take two minutes out of their day to call their
senators and pressure them to vote for farm bill reform. You can put a halt to
trade distorting subsidies and unjust economic practices.


Nicole Netzel


Political science and international studies

[email protected]

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