Ck315a I really like and appreciate your blog article. Keep writing.
Walz is a Congressman, also called a Representative. He's from a farm district. His district is in favor of the subsidies. I don't really have a problem with Representatives who have a philosophy of representing the people in their district by voting in their interest. But most districts aren't farm districts and it is not in the majority interest of most people in most districts to continue a $30 billion regime of ag subsidies in perpetuity. If everybody was voting their constituents' interests, we would be rid of the subsidies.
The problem is that other nonfarm reps either 1) have honestly bought into the need for ag subsidies; 2) "go along to get along"; or 3) are bribed with campaign contributions from the farm lobby. It's hard to change people's minds, so it's going to be difficult to get votes away from reps who vote for the farm bill for reason #1. You will never take the politics out of politics, so reps that say "I'll voter for your special interest if you'll vote for mine" will also be hard to turn-- so reps that fall into category #2 will also be tough to reach. My strategy to get better outcomes in Congress continues to be to aggressively attack the campaign finance mess in our elections, which would remove the incentive to vote against the interest of constituents for reason #3. Instituting public campaign financing would turn enough votes in close votes to result in generally better outcomes.
skymutt: accept no substitutes!
Far too many people think farm subsidies are good and have biases that get them to believe these subsidies are for a good cause.
I think the list of BS reasons given by Huckabee in a previous story are believed and internalized by far too many people.
Well, you know...I could say it's in the interest of my area to have abundant snow for winter sports and vacationing. The more snow we have, the better our businesses do during the winter.
Maybe our local ski resorts should get subsidies to offset any lack of snow fall and also have the government subsidize snow making machines...actually, more R&D for better snow makers would help too. These snow makers could also be used in the woods to ensure good snowmobiling and cross country skiing trails.
Some how, that wouldn't fly as well I presume and with good reason.
This isn't about tyranny of the majority or anything like that. It's about what makes sense economically and ag subsidies, for example, don't.
It's just that very "You support my wasteful spending and I'll support yours" mentality that gives us these ballooning budgets and messed up markets that people don't seem to be aware of. It picks their pockets everyday while they worry about who's getting tax cuts and who isn't.
Subsidies like ag and steel, among others, hurt everyone in the name of narrow interests and anti-economic nonsense. There is no net benefit in subsidies like these. It's a net loss for the country and they shouldn't tolerated in the name of "get-along-pragmatism".
Most importantly, reps should not take that arrogant MYOB attitude to research organization and think tanks that argue against the folly of such policies.
Spending debates are not only a matter for the beneficiaries. They concern everyone.
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