American taxpayers remain on the hook for millions of dollars to pay off Brazilian cotton farmers — one of the more bizarre, and costly, consequences of the House of Representatives’ failure to pass a massive farm bill. Fox News
This whole payments to Brazil thing started about 10 years ago when our buddies Brazil sued us before the World Trade Organization claiming that since we subsidize American cotton farmers, it makes it impossible for other countries to compete. Yeah, so?
Well, the World Trade Organization took Brazil’s side (what a shock) and in 2004 said that the country had “the right to impose punishing trade measures against America” So what we did was the usual kowtowing and made an interim settlement with Brazil. They agreed to withhold any retaliatory tariffs on non-agriculture products in exchange for a little cash every year. All this until we could come up with a new farm bill to make the “adjustments” so everything is “fair” …what a bunch of crap! (in my opinion of course).
Well, the new trade bill that failed to pass congress had an amendment that would have ended the bribe payments to Brazil and change our cotton program. You know, we are forced to keep making hostage payments to Brazil because or law makers are too inept to make the changes need to the subsidizing of cotton. Why do we need to subsidize cotton anyhow? Shouldn’t the free market be able to set production and price through that Economics 101 lesson, “Supply and Demand”?
It’s infuriating to know that we just pump money to countries all over the world when we, as a country, are in such a financial crisis. It seems like every piece of crap, third world country has their hands in our pocket. But it’s not just the countries that you have never heard of or can’t pronounce their names; we give a ton of money to some of the richest countries in the world also.
The Congressional Research Service released a report in 2011 that shows that in 2010 the U.S. handed out a total of $1.4bn to 16 foreign countries that held at least $10bn in our Treasury securities. Hang on to your seat, it gets better… Four of the world’s richest countries received foreign aid in 2010 with China receiving $27.2m, India $126.6m, Brazil $25m, and Russia $71.5m. Oh yeah, Mexico also received $316.7m and Egypt $255.7m. …are you kidding me?
The kicker is that we borrow money from the countries that we give aid to. Does this make any sense to anyone? So we need to borrow money so we can give it right back to them as a gift? This makes blood shoot out of my eyes! If these countries can afford to buy our debt, shouldn’t they be able to take care of whatever ridiculous reason we have to give them money? …I’m just sayin’
But back to the Farm Bill, if Congress fails to pass any type of farm bill by the end of the year, our country will go back to when the last permanent farm bill was enacted – in 1949.