Letters to the Editor

Your views in 200 words or less

Tag: farm subsidies


OBESITY: Taxpayers subsidize poor dietary choices

Regarding the story on our national obesity epidemic (TNT, 7-7), it should be noted that a contributing factor is the degree to which our tax dollars subsidize poor dietary choices.

Over the last 15 years, $246 billion in taxpayer subsidies have helped to artificially reduce the price of unhealthy food. According to an analysis of U.S. Department of Agriculture records, the top 10 percent of agricultural subsidy recipients received 74 percent of those payments, and the subsidies have disproportionately supported a handful of commodity crops led by corn and soy.

These subsidies have driven down the cost of commodity crops,

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OBESITY: Farm subsidies make unhealthy food cheap

Columnist Kathleen Parker bemoans the idea of a “government-enforced nutritional mandate” (column, 5-22) while completely ignoring a conflicting role that our government plays in making us more obese and less healthy: the fact that U.S. agriculture policy makes poor eating habits an economically sensible choice by using our tax dollars to subsidize unhealthy foods over more nutritious ones.

Government subsidies for corn and soybeans make sugars and fats some of the cheapest foods to produce, and Big Ag has used its clout in Congress to ensure that billions in taxpayer subsidies continue going to high fructose corn syrup, hydrogenated oils

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CONGRESS: Cut subsidies for farms, not families

The House Agriculture Committee has recommended that the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP – formerly known as food stamps) should be cut rather than the automatic subsidies to farms.

This at a time when more people are getting benefits from SNAP than ever before. There is no information about how the cuts would be made; i.e., reduce the number of people eligible or reduce the benefit amount. But it seems clear that the $4.9 billion in direct payments that are paid out automatically each year, regardless of whether a person farms, are more important than protecting a program that

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