(Author’s note: I’m introducing this as a simple fact sheet. I hope to provide further detail later.)
Farmers today face a serious crisis, at least if present trends continue, as they are currently projected to do by United States Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Economic Research Service, (ERS) and the Congressional Budget Office (CBO). A number of factors, (but not all,) make this worse than the 1980s farm crisis. Here are 10 of them.
10 WAYS THE CURRENT FARM CRISIS IS WORSE THAN THE 1980s
[1.] Farm prices are lower.
[2.] There are no price floor programs.
[3.] these programs have been all but forgotten.
[4.] trade policy is worse.
[5.] Most farms have lost value added livestock, the livestock option.
[6.] As a result, most farms have greatly lost the sustainable crop rotation option.
[7.] The infrastructure needed to support for this value-added diversity has been severely reduced.
[8.] Congress is much worse, much more anti-farmer, including even rural progressives, who are generally much the same as conservatives on the big issues.
[9.] The cheap food lobby is bigger than ever, and has more money than ever, (from the farmers who are forced to subsidize them).
. There are enormous myths against us, beyond what we ever had before, especially the subsidy myth.
Note. This is all prior to the additional problems of the Trump trade war. What’s so bad about the trade war is that it goes downward from the crisis that already existed, though that’s rarely reported.
On the positive side, however, the politics has radically changed, as a number of Democratic Presidential candidates have now come out in favor of restoring the core of the original Democratic Party Farm Bills of the New Deal, (in new ways). Supporters of Price Floor programs, (with supply management,) include Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren, Kamala Harris, (soon to be released,) Tulsi Gabbard, Marianne Williamson, John Inslee, (no longer running,) and, there is interest from others as well. (Julian Castro, and Joe Biden is proud of his support for these programs in the 1980s.)