I do not pretend to be an expert on US agriculture policy (nor do I think I want to be one). However, is there some rational public policy justification for the farm subsidy policies that currently exist?
Today I read that Congress is contemplating a $7.4 billion bailout of the agricultural economy. The reason? Why, this year has produced a bumper crop! In any sane industry, this would be a good thing, and it certainly is good overall for the US. But, alas, this tends to depress the price for farm commodities (even though there are more units to sell).
Is there any good reason to treat the farming industry differently than the rest of the economy? Because if it’s just about keeping some farmers’ heads above water, I say let 'em drown. It bothers me no more to see a farmer go out of business than it does to see any other businessman fail.
Please tell me there is more to this policy than that.