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King Corn Assignment

King Corn Assignment - and implemented “fencerow to...

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Eric Slover November 21, 11 King Corn Assignment #6 As King Corn outlined, the government during the New Deal attempted to bring supply into line with demand, an approach known as “supply management.” This was accomplished through the use of conservation set-asides, a price floor guaranteeing a fair price for corn, and a grain reserve to deal with overproduction. Farmers did not need to rely on the government for a fair income. They received it from the marketplace. Prior to the New Deal, the “free market” approach to agriculture caused economic booms and busts as farmers suffered continued depressed prices for their crops. This led to the rise of the Populist Party and other agricultural movements whose ideas were finally implemented with the New Deal. Beginning in 1973, policy changes promoted by Nixon Secretary of Agriculture Earl Butz deregulated the corn market. He dismantled supply management policies, selling off government storage bins used as food security reserves
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Unformatted text preview: and implemented “fencerow to fencerow” planting. Butz believed any overproduction should then be dealt with through exports and “free trade.” The Russian Wheat Deal and the World Food Crisis of the early 1970s gave Butz the chance to promote the false notion that free markets would be good for farmers. Butz and agribusiness giant, Cargill, along with the Farm Bureau argued that farm prices crashing would be a positive because they would be remedied by more exports and new uses such as ethanol and corn sweeteners. Prices collapsed shortly after the 1996 Freedom to Farm Act, necessitating expensive taxpayer bailouts. In 2000, subsidies provided farmers 49% of their net income, up from 13% in 1996. The $1.65 corn price per bushel received by Ian and Curt in King Corn is less than the price farmers received in the 1970s, even without accounting for inflation....
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King Corn Assignment - and implemented “fencerow to...

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