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OfflineRedstorm
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Agricultural Subsidies
    #3341897 - 11/10/04 03:50 PM (12 years, 9 months ago)

As a preface to this post, I want everyone to know that I am not extremely knowledgable on this topic. All I know is what I have learned in classes in the past, and some online research.
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Subisidies for agriculture have a good purpose in it's roots, but I feel they are going about it all wrong. It works great to help keep prices up on produce and whatnot, but isn't there something that can be done which is more productive with these farmers fields than to leave them unplanted?

Is it feasable that they could continue subsidies, but let the farmers plant their crops, then give the entire harvest to a charitable organization? I realize that it would cost money to process these crops, but I feel the outcome of something like this would be immense in helping those who are homeless or underpriveliged. Either that, or send the crops overseas to underdeveloped countries who we are aiding.

The key to developing a policy liked this is to make sure none of the subsidized crops gets into the U.S. public produce market, which if happens, defeats the whole purpose of subsidies. I feel that something like this could easily be done, and would help add productivity and efficiency to out counry in terms of aiding our effort of feeding the poor.

Don't get me wrong, I, in no way think this is a perfect plan. I'm positive it's been thought of many times before, and I'm sure its been contested. I was just curious as to what you guys thought of an idea like this.


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Invisiblesilversoul7
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Re: Agricultural Subsidies [Re: Redstorm]
    #3341935 - 11/10/04 03:57 PM (12 years, 9 months ago)

Agricultural subsidies are responsible for big agribusiness taking over small farms in America, as well as running Third World farmers out of business, thus driving them into the sweatshops that are so hated around here. Subsidies of all types should be abolished.


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"It is dangerous to be right when the government is wrong."--Voltaire


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InvisibleOJK
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Re: Agricultural Subsidies [Re: Redstorm]
    #3341950 - 11/10/04 03:59 PM (12 years, 9 months ago)

Quote:

Redstorm said:
As a preface to this post, I want everyone to know that I am not extremely knowledgable on this topic. All I know is what I have learned in classes in the past, and some online research.
--------------------------------------------------
Subisidies for agriculture have a good purpose in it's roots, but I feel they are going about it all wrong. It works great to help keep prices up on produce and whatnot, but isn't there something that can be done which is more productive with these farmers fields than to leave them unplanted?

Is it feasable that they could continue subsidies, but let the farmers plant their crops, then give the entire harvest to a charitable organization? I realize that it would cost money to process these crops, but I feel the outcome of something like this would be immense in helping those who are homeless or underpriveliged. Either that, or send the crops overseas to underdeveloped countries who we are aiding.

The key to developing a policy liked this is to make sure none of the subsidized crops gets into the U.S. public produce market, which if happens, defeats the whole purpose of subsidies. I feel that something like this could easily be done, and would help add productivity and efficiency to out counry in terms of aiding our effort of feeding the poor.

Don't get me wrong, I, in no way think this is a perfect plan. I'm positive it's been thought of many times before, and I'm sure its been contested. I was just curious as to what you guys thought of an idea like this.




Subsidies have been bastardised by the West. What were originally temporary measures to help farmers deal with temporary problems like a dry spell or an outbreak of crop disease have become permanent devices used by the West to keep down third world farmers.

It wouldn't help to donate food to charitable organisations, except in very specific circumstances. Many of the problems of the third world stem from the West dumping their food surplasses in poor markets at unrealistically low prices, putting local farmers out of business and royally fucking the mainly agricultural economies of poor countries.

Subsidies are simply devices used to prolong and promote the growth of unprofitable crops or artificially sustaining unprofitable agricultural projects.

The best answer to subsidies is to abolish them.


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OfflineRedstorm
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Re: Agricultural Subsidies [Re: silversoul7]
    #3341952 - 11/10/04 03:59 PM (12 years, 9 months ago)

I won't even begin to think about them being abolished. That is way too large of a step for the immediate future. I'm not saying subsidies are good, I'm just saying they are here now, and are incredibly inefficient. If we have something which is bad, we might as well give it some silver lining.


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OfflineRedstorm
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Re: Agricultural Subsidies [Re: OJK]
    #3341966 - 11/10/04 04:02 PM (12 years, 9 months ago)

Why wouldn't it help to donate to charitable org's? The gov. could keep a surplus of the subidized goods, in case of a natural diaster or other emergency.


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Invisiblesilversoul7
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Re: Agricultural Subsidies [Re: Redstorm]
    #3341992 - 11/10/04 04:09 PM (12 years, 9 months ago)

I wouldn't abolish them all at once, but I would do it gradually. Thomas Sowell had an interesting idea of abolishing them from the top down. Start by abolishing subsidies for anyone with an annual income or total assets exceeding one billion dollars. Then abolish them for millionaires. Keep working our way down until we've abolished them altogether. The fact that we'd be doing this gradually would give small farmers sufficient warning time.


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Invisiblepsilomonkey
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Re: Agricultural Subsidies [Re: Redstorm]
    #3342419 - 11/10/04 05:36 PM (12 years, 9 months ago)


Subsidies for agriculture have a good purpose in it's roots, but I feel they are going about it all wrong. It works great to help keep prices up on produce and whatnot,


Farm subsidies were designed to maintain an over capacity on the supply side to ensure a stable supply of food. I do think the way they are implemented here in Europe is archaic and corrupt has hell, and the dumping of over capacity produce in Africa damages their markets, creating famine problems in the first place.

but isn't there something that can be done which is more productive with these farmers fields than to leave them unplanted?


The problem with producing something over capacity the price will drop, you just can't regulate who gets allowed to have it at what price in a free market.


Is it feasible that they could continue subsidies, but let the farmers plant their crops, then give the entire harvest to a charitable organization?


I can think of an alternative. Biomass fuels. Rapeseed oil can be used as a substitute for diesel. A diesel engine will run on it without modification. It would produce a new agricultural market, fuel. Good for the economy, reduce/end subsidies, creates jobs, environmentally friendly, less dependence on foreign oil.

Of course with vested intrests like big Agriculture and big Energy, neither want to rock the boat, just happy exploit the system and take taxpayers money in subsidies.


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