USDA chief Vilsack: Rural America becoming less relevant | AP

… rural America’s biggest assets – the food supply, recreational areas and energy, for example – can be overlooked by people elsewhere as the U.S. population shifts more to cities, their suburbs and exurbs.

“Why is it that we don’t have a farm bill?” said Vilsack. “It isn’t just the differences of policy. It’s the fact that rural America with a shrinking population is becoming less and less relevant to the politics of this country, and we had better recognize that and we better begin to reverse it.”

For the first time in recent memory, farm-state lawmakers were not able to push a farm bill through Congress in an election year, evidence of lost clout in farm states…”  via Associated Press.

2 thoughts on “USDA chief Vilsack: Rural America becoming less relevant | AP

  1. hoboduke 12/09/2012 / 11:26 AM

    Living in rural America, most family farmers know that the agriculture department serves large special interests including corporate farms that harvest government disincentives to efficient farming. Being paid not to grow certain crops, and cheating on farm crop insurance are the major focus of mega farms. Farm crop insurance pays farmers who produce less than the average crop yield of the current growing season. Mega farmers haul grain from acres over the average yield, and report them with the below average acres so that they collect on below average on more acres for more insurance fraud. The USDA does not bother having agents to prevent such fraud that is widespread and well known. Ethanol program of USDA is ruining small farms that cannot afford to feed their cattle and a shortage of beef will hurt more than ethanol usage helps.

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