Friday, December 22, 2006

Farm Subsidies Kill Farmers

You like the Farmer in the Dell?

Too bad. He's being killed off by the Federal Government and corporate farming (that means CPA's, lawyers, and Big Money players.)

The very policies touted by Congress as a way to save small family farms are instead helping to accelerate their demise, economists, analysts and farmers say. That's because owners of large farms receive the largest share of government subsidies. They often use the money to acquire more land, pushing aside small and medium-size farms as well as young farmers starting out.

"Historically, when you think of family farms, you think of Mom and Dad and three generations working a small or mid-sized farm. It gives you a warm and fuzzy feeling," said Alex White, a professor of agricultural economics at Virginia Tech. "In the real world, it might be a mid-sized farm. But it also might be a huge farm. It might be a corporation.

"Large family farms, defined as those with revenue of more than $250,000, account for nearly 60 percent of all agricultural production but just 7 percent of all farms. They receive more than 54 percent of government subsidies. And their share of federal payments is growing -- more than doubling over the past decade for the biggest farms.

Not to mention the amount of "farm aid" sent to people who buy acreage specifically for the Gummint's generosity and/or tax credits/writeoffs.

HT Betsy's Page

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