Free Markets, Free People

Today’s GOP: Proud of going to the left of Obama with the Farm Bill

I told you a while back how I get email from politicians that I never asked for and from which I can’t opt out because they don’t give any mechanism for that. I got a real doozy yesterday.

It’s from Marlin Stutzman, Congressman from Indiana, bragging about separating the Farm Bill out from a bunch of other Ag Department stuff: 

Transparent government won an important victory today. Conservatives seized an opportunity to split the Farm Bill, a landmark reform that breaks the unholy alliance between food stamps and agriculture policy. For the first time since the 1970’s taxpayers will have an honest look at how Washington spends their money on agriculture and food stamp policy.

At first I thought that sounded pretty good. Then I read what Heritage had to say about this “landmark reform” (found via Instapundit and Megan McArdle):

Supporters of this farm-only farm bill wasted the golden opportunity that separation could have provided: the ability to promote policies that benefit taxpayers, farmers, and consumers in a fiscally responsible way. With the passage of this bill, the House has gone even further to the left than the Senate bill. It would spend more money than Obama on the largest farm program, crop insurance [emphasis mine].

On top of all this, the process House Republicans used to get this 600-plus-page bill to the floor in a mere 10 hours essentially violates their own promise to conduct business in an open and transparent manner [emphasis mine]. They prohibited legislators from introducing amendments. And, they played a game of bait and switch by claiming this bill was the same text from the failed House farm bill of a few weeks ago.

In fact, they made this new bill even worse—by making sneaky changes to the bill text so that some of the costliest and most indefensible programs no longer expire after five years, but live on indefinitely. This means the sugar program that drives up food prices will be harder to change, because it doesn’t automatically expire. It also means the new and radical shallow loss program that covers even minor losses for farmers will indefinitely be a part of the law.

Note the sleazy irony. Congressman Stutzman starts by bragging about transparency in a bill that was passed in a process that was about as transparent as toxic sludge.

This is today’s GOP – paying off their corporate cronies and bragging about how transparently they did it. 

8 Responses to Today’s GOP: Proud of going to the left of Obama with the Farm Bill

  • To paraphrase the CHOAM Combine from the book Dune…. “the bucks must flow!”.
    This is the Choom combine now man.
    See, here’s the problem that nits like Erb don’t get…..this stuff pisses us off no matter WHO is doing it.
    If he wanders in here at all, it will be to tell us this just points to how evil Republicans are….

    • Right, but remember – he’s not ideological. Because he says so.

      Just like the woman with four kids by four different men who are not her husband isn’t a slut. Because she says so.

    • And there are FEW lobbies as powerful and historical as the farm lobby.  Part of our “agrarian myth”.

  • The GOP has learned much from the DNC in the past five years.
    Apparently the only game left in town is to see who can give the most taxpayer money away.
    The only people who dared speak-up against this new tyranny, the TEA Party has been systematically been crucified by the IRS, to the cheers of Takers, and mere mumbles of disapproval by the GOP.
    Who would have ever thought it would get this ugly?
    A Government stands or falls by the degree of the people’s faith in that body.
    Like the monkey said when he got his tail chopped off in the door “it won’t be long now”.

    • The GOP has learned much from the DNC in the past five years.

      The GOP, since it’s founding in the 1850s, was teaching the Dems about cronyism.

  • Once any subsidy is given, it becomes harder and harder to claw it back. This is the same in every country since the Romans.