As Congress takes up a renewal of the massive, omnibus five-year entitlement plan known as the U.S. Farm Bill, don’t hold your breath for massive reforms.
So far, it appears a decision to do away with direct payments of taxpayer funds to farm aid recipients — many of them very, very wealthy corporations — has been reached.
But that’s likely the biggest change in a nearly $1 trillion package that will see more than $760 billion go to food stamp subsidies over the next 10 years, as the number of Americans on the program swells to more than 15 percent (as opposed to 2 percent 40 years ago) under President Barack Obama.
The Richmond Times-Dispatch excoriated Congress and the Obama Administration for their mutual adoration of the Farm Bill, citing both the “demosclerosis” that has the bill’s supportive lobby entrenched in the Washington, D.C., chain of power, as well as the perverse city-country gravy train that pays farmers for not producing (and pays urban people — including destitute farmers like Jon Bon Jovi and the Rockefeller family — through contrived entitlements).
“Anyone starting from scratch would not design a farm policy like the one America has. At least not anyone with a lick of common sense,” notes columnist Bart Hinkle. “But since common sense is as common on Capitol Hill as a unicorn stampede, we have…[a] confusing clutter of programs that pay farmers not to farm, reward them for undue risk, write checks to rock stars and Rockefellers, give special treatment to certain crops without rationale, and ladle out welfare to the wealthy while ignoring those on the margins.”
Read Hinkle’s full column here.