Some farm subsidies appear on the way out

The subsidies in question are direct payments to farmers whether they grow a crop or not. The Congress appears to be moving toward ending the program, replacing it with far cheaper subsidies for crop insurance. Washington Post: The Senate Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry Committee last month approved a bill that would save $23 billion over the next decade by ending direct payments and consolidating other programs. The bill would strengthen the subsidized crop insurance program and create a program to compensate farmers for smaller, or "shallow," revenue losses, based on a five-year average, for acres actually planted. Getting a bill to the president's desk will be a challenge. Most of the bill's spending is on the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or food stamps, at an annual cost now of about $75 billion. The Republican-led House is looking for greater cuts to this program than the Democratic Senate will accept. The House also is more sympathetic to Southern...(Read Full Post)