Wednesday, March 20, 2002

I know I'm not an economist or farmer, but it seems to me that we could save ourselves some money while helping the third world. Now, poor countries at subsistence levels of farming experience famine when there's a drought. At the same time, the US government pays domestic farmers to not grow crops, in that it would lower the price of, say, corn due to the abundance. Instead of giving foreign aid to these poor countries and subsidizing our farms, why not declare that those farms which formerly were to lie fallow will now be permitted to only grow corn for foreign export? Alternatively, we could say that all farmers will be given a subsidy, and that all farms must actually grow things. Thus, instead of giving money to kleptocracies, we give them food that we have in abundance. I'm sure that they could sell that food, but it wouldn't bring in as much money, and it would mean that at least someone would get the food. I welcome all criticisms of this plan, but it seems dumb to me to pay foreigners to work on growing things while paying our people to not grow similar crops.

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