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Green Acres (562 Farm Subsidy Checks Go To Manhattan)
Wall Street Journal ^ | 11 December 2007 | Editorial Staff

Posted on 12/11/2007 5:35:44 PM PST by shrinkermd

Here's today's quiz: What do Scottie Pippen, David Letterman and Ted Turner have in common? Answer: None of them are farmers, but all three have received thousands of dollars in federal farm subsidies this decade.

We could add to that list of non-farmer farm-aid recipients David Rockefeller, Leonard Lauder of the cosmetics firm, Edgar Bronfman Sr. of the Seagram fortune, and Microsoft cofounder Paul Allen. Our point is that you don't have to drive a tractor, plant seeds, or even live anywhere near rural America to qualify for Uncle Sam's farm largess. And you sure don't have to be poor.

The Environmental Working Group has a map of New York City making the rounds on the Internet that shows 562 dots, each representing a Manhattan resident who gets a USDA farm payment. Who knew that growing cotton, corn and soybeans was such a thriving industry near Central Park? We don't know the incomes of these people, but it's a fair guess they're not homeless.

What we have here is a real-life version of the 1960s TV show "Green Acres," but in reverse. In the fictional series, Eddie Albert and Eva Gabor play a fancy couple who flee Manhattan to live down on the farm among the pigs and goats, while she pines for the glitter of Times Square. In the 2007 version, they flee the farm for Manhattan and get a subsidy check at their Park Avenue penthouse. What a deal.

(Excerpt) Read more at online.wsj.com ...


TOPICS: Business/Economy; Editorial; Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: farm; program
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1 posted on 12/11/2007 5:35:46 PM PST by shrinkermd
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To: shrinkermd

Perhaps a difference between a mailing address and a physical address. IE. Owns a farm run by others lives in Manhattan ?


2 posted on 12/11/2007 5:36:49 PM PST by festus (Fred Thompson '08)
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To: shrinkermd

Growing something in their basements, something needing a lot of artificial light and a clandestine existence?


3 posted on 12/11/2007 5:43:56 PM PST by doc1019 (Fred Thompson '08)
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To: shrinkermd

bmflr

.

.

.

Why the smart money is on Duncan Hunter
http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1926032/posts


4 posted on 12/11/2007 5:44:21 PM PST by Kevmo (We should withdraw from Iraq via Tehran. And Duncan Hunter is just the man to get that job done.)
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To: festus

Lets see....Letterman resides in CT., has office, corp headquarters and works in NYC and has a ranch in Montana. Doesn’t seen to difficult to understand.


5 posted on 12/11/2007 5:46:24 PM PST by A_Tradition_Continues
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To: festus

Exactly. I know someone who’s in that category. Manhattan agribusiness banker, still owns farmland in Nebraska where he’s originally from, definitely not living in any “Park Avenue penthouse”. Probably could make a lot more money if he sold the farmland to a developer and invested the proceeds in something else, but he doesn’t want to. I’m sure the subsidy helps him continue to feel that way.


6 posted on 12/11/2007 5:48:49 PM PST by GovernmentShrinker
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To: shrinkermd

Manhattan......Kansas....?


7 posted on 12/11/2007 5:52:28 PM PST by Attention Surplus Disorder (This post sold by weight, not volume. Content may have settled during shipment.)
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To: shrinkermd
Go to the following database and you can search by state, congressional distict, county, zip code, name, etc and see who is getting subsidies and how much.

EWG Farm Subsidy database

8 posted on 12/11/2007 6:04:00 PM PST by deport (---22 days Iowa Caucuses--- 27 days New Hampshire vote s--- [ Meanwhile:-- Cue Spooky Music--])
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To: A_Tradition_Continues
Lets see....Letterman resides in CT., has office, corp headquarters and works in NYC and has a ranch in Montana. Doesn’t seen to difficult to understand.

It's difficult for me to understand why a man of Letterman's wealth deserves federal handouts simply because he owns a ranch. Or any other farmer for that matter, regardless of income.
9 posted on 12/11/2007 6:10:47 PM PST by AnotherUnixGeek
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To: AnotherUnixGeek

He gets paid not to grow corn on his ranch.


10 posted on 12/11/2007 6:20:43 PM PST by steveab (When was the last time someone tried to sell you a CO2 induced climate control system for your home?)
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To: shrinkermd

The best reason that these subsidies should be terminated.


11 posted on 12/11/2007 6:22:25 PM PST by eleni121 ((+ En Touto Nika! By this sign conquer! + Constantine the Great)
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To: AnotherUnixGeek

Stopping the farm subsidies and you will be paying $9.00 for a burger. The Government pays the farmers to keep the cost of food down.


12 posted on 12/11/2007 6:22:49 PM PST by mmyers
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To: steveab

I got a whole yard to not grow anything in. Where’s my check? Do I get exta if I also not grow stuff in some of my neighbors’ yards? Because I could start not doing that right away. In fact, now that I think of it, I started not doing that a long time ago so they probably owe me already, huh?


13 posted on 12/11/2007 6:26:03 PM PST by Emmett McCarthy
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To: mmyers
Stopping the farm subsidies and you will be paying $9.00 for a burger.

Yeah right... I suppose you are also the exclusive realtor for the Brooklyn Bridge too?

14 posted on 12/11/2007 6:29:06 PM PST by ikka
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To: ikka

I know that I am 100% right. $9.00 burgers coming soon!


15 posted on 12/11/2007 6:33:26 PM PST by mmyers
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To: festus
Perhaps a difference between a mailing address and a physical address. IE. Owns a farm run by others lives in Manhattan ?

I can't speak to the other names, but Ted Turner is the largest landowner in several Kansas and Montana counties.

I can attest that the Kansas properties are under cultivation or serving as grazing land.

Ted might be a liberal kook. But he is also undeniably a farmer.

The editorial staff of the WSJ should know better.

16 posted on 12/11/2007 6:40:03 PM PST by okie01 (THE MAINSTREAM MEDIA: Ignorance on Parade)
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To: shrinkermd
Butt wipe ted has about a million acres, and a monster buffalo ranch.
17 posted on 12/11/2007 6:40:32 PM PST by org.whodat (What's the difference between a Democrat and a republican????)
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To: mmyers
The Government pays the farmers to keep the cost of food down.

The dairy industry is subsidized through the Dairy Price Support Program (DPSP), which cost taxpayers an average of $500 million per year from fiscal 1999 to fiscal 2004 for the purchase of surplus dairy products.

This is tax money being used to make sure that your food is expensive.

18 posted on 12/11/2007 6:40:52 PM PST by ClearCase_guy (The broken wall, the burning roof and tower. And Agamemnon dead.)
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To: mmyers

You’ve got it all bass-ackwards — the subsidy keeps the price artificially high. Removing the subsidy would actually lower the price. The fact that we don’t pay $9 for a burger is a testament to the markets, not Uncle Sugar. These folks are the new welfare queens.


19 posted on 12/11/2007 6:41:29 PM PST by 10Ring
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To: ikka
Yeah right... I suppose you are also the exclusive realtor for the Brooklyn Bridge too?

Indeed, always boggles my mind how many people defend farm subsidies on a supposedly Conservative forum.

Shockingly, markets work. If subsidies vanished, the price of food wouldn't rise any higher per person than the % of taxes per person going to farm subsidies. And you'd save money because you'd eliminate much of the gigantic Dept. of Agriculture Bureacracy (I can't remember or find the number but the ratio of Ag Dept. employees to actual farmers is some insanely low number..like one for 8 or something.)

PJ O'Rourke has a great chapter on farm subsidies in "Parliament of Whores" - basically a slice of the Warsaw Pact in America.

20 posted on 12/11/2007 6:41:45 PM PST by Strategerist
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To: mmyers
Stopping the farm subsidies and you will be paying $9.00 for a burger. The Government pays the farmers to keep the cost of food down.

You have been brain washed.

21 posted on 12/11/2007 6:42:11 PM PST by org.whodat (What's the difference between a Democrat and a republican????)
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To: shrinkermd

Mr. Douglas’ wife got him to move back to New York.


22 posted on 12/11/2007 6:43:29 PM PST by ThomasThomas (An investigative journalist is one who uses spellcheck.)
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To: org.whodat

Then tell me city folks, in 1975 corn sold for 225 a bushel
and in 2006 it sold for 1.60 a bushel.

A 100hp tractor cost 10,000 in 1975 and in 2006 it cost 150,000

sing me a tune ladies


23 posted on 12/11/2007 6:45:22 PM PST by mmyers
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To: org.whodat

Farm Subsidies will endure forever, unfortunately due to the disproportionate power of lower-population Midwest farming states in the Senate due to two Senators per state.


24 posted on 12/11/2007 6:46:15 PM PST by Strategerist
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To: AnotherUnixGeek
It's difficult for me to understand why a man of Letterman's wealth deserves federal handouts simply because he owns a ranch. Or any other farmer for that matter, regardless of income.

The subsidies amount to a reward for the farmer/rancher who cooperates with governmental farm policy by either doing, or not doing, a certain thing. For example, not planting cotton, corn, tobacco or wheat. Or, on the other hand, adopting approved conservation and wildlife management techniques.

It's not a welfare program. It has nothing to do with the farmer's income or situation -- only with governmental policy.

Most of the subsidies are either stupid, wasteful or unnecessary. Or all of the above. But I can't blame an individual for collecting them, if they earned them.

25 posted on 12/11/2007 6:48:41 PM PST by okie01 (THE MAINSTREAM MEDIA: Ignorance on Parade)
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To: mmyers

The main way civilization advances is putting farmers out of business.

When 99% of the population farmed they couldn’t do a whole lot else, and the advancement of civilization, art, industry around the world, and the economic development of this country were predicated on farmers becoming more efficient and fewer and fewer farmers producing more product.

Why aren’t we subsidizing memory chip makers because 1 GB of memory sells for some microscopic fraction today compared to what it sold for in 1985?

I’m still waiting for the “you’ll all starve to death if subsidies are eliminated” line.


26 posted on 12/11/2007 6:49:42 PM PST by Strategerist
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To: shrinkermd; Abathar; Abcdefg; Abram; akatel; albertp; AlexandriaDuke; Alexander Rubin; Allerious; ..




Libertarian ping! To be added or removed from my ping list freepmail me or post a message here.
27 posted on 12/11/2007 6:55:19 PM PST by traviskicks (http://www.neoperspectives.com/Ron_Paul_2008.htm)
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To: mmyers

LOL! Actually the opposite occurs.

FYI:
http://www.neoperspectives.com/farmsubsidies.htm


28 posted on 12/11/2007 6:57:27 PM PST by traviskicks (http://www.neoperspectives.com/Ron_Paul_2008.htm)
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To: shrinkermd

ping


29 posted on 12/11/2007 7:01:01 PM PST by ocr1
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To: Strategerist

I can tell you one thing, you can actually live w/o any gigibytes but let me know how long you can live w/o food.


30 posted on 12/11/2007 7:02:16 PM PST by tiki (True Christians will not deliberately slander or misrepresent others or their beliefs)
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To: mmyers
A hundred horse power tractor with a front end loader and a heated and air condition cab cost about $45,000.00 today, A four hundred horse power tractor, four wheel drive with duallys in the rear would cost about $150,000.00.

Price of corn 1976 was $2.76 price of corn 2006 was 3.75. http://www.inflationdata.com/inflation/Articles/Corn_Inflation.asp

I live on a farm, do you?

31 posted on 12/11/2007 7:04:30 PM PST by org.whodat (What's the difference between a Democrat and a republican????)
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To: org.whodat
Butt wipe ted has about a million acres, and a monster buffalo ranch.

And he could make a lot more money if he removed his novelty buffalo from his ranch near Gallatin Gateway and brought back cattle.
32 posted on 12/11/2007 7:08:24 PM PST by It Aint Easy
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To: shrinkermd

A real taxpayer scam run by the USDA is their Rural Home Loan Program. The intent is to provide mortgages in rural locations where conventional lenders are wary of investing.

The reality is a lot of the locations where USDA makes home loans used to be rural but are now suburbs and subdivisons with 1/3 acre lots.

Great way to promote agriculture—/s


33 posted on 12/11/2007 7:10:43 PM PST by Rb ver. 2.0 (Global warming is the new Marxism.)
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To: Rb ver. 2.0

Horse crap


34 posted on 12/11/2007 7:16:05 PM PST by mmyers
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To: Rb ver. 2.0
Great way to promote agriculture—/s

What is really crap is the loans they make to thier friends and family, that have nothing to do with the agri business, as well as the ones made to the politically connected.

35 posted on 12/11/2007 7:22:54 PM PST by org.whodat (What's the difference between a Democrat and a republican????)
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To: mmyers

Please provide evidence to support your assertion. I believe you have reversed the situation. The government pays subsidies to producers so that the price does not fall below an artificial threshold. The subsidies keep the prices high, not low.


36 posted on 12/11/2007 7:24:49 PM PST by businessprofessor
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To: Strategerist
And you'd save money because you'd eliminate much of the gigantic Dept. of Agriculture Bureacracy (I can't remember or find the number but the ratio of Ag Dept. employees to actual farmers is some insanely low number..like one for 8 or something.)

True, there are counties all over the country that have all kinds of Agra. dept. employees and no farmers.

37 posted on 12/11/2007 7:27:21 PM PST by org.whodat (What's the difference between a Democrat and a republican????)
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To: GovernmentShrinker

“I know someone who’s in that category. Manhattan agribusiness banker, still owns farmland in Nebraska where he’s originally from, definitely not living in any “Park Avenue penthouse”.”

Please explain why this person should getting my tax money.


38 posted on 12/11/2007 7:28:10 PM PST by gracesdad
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To: mmyers
The Government pays the farmers to keep the cost of food down.

And some Conservatives are opposed to Government intervention in American Business.

39 posted on 12/11/2007 7:28:40 PM PST by Doe Eyes
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To: GovernmentShrinker

Or Letterman. Or Pippen.


40 posted on 12/11/2007 7:29:15 PM PST by gracesdad
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To: shrinkermd
Ted Turner have in common? Answer: None of them are farmers

Red Ted is a rancher, and he used to have (and perhaps still does have) a plantation in South Carolina. So there is a little bit of intellectual dishonesty in this story.

41 posted on 12/11/2007 7:29:38 PM PST by PAR35
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To: businessprofessor

Ignorance must be bliss. A few years ago when prices were lower, the usda paid farmers the difference between a target price and the actual price. It had nothing to do with the price that cargill, your local wheat grinder, etc. paid for raw crops mush less the consumer.


42 posted on 12/11/2007 7:33:51 PM PST by crazyshrink (Being uninformed is one thing, choosing ignorance is a whole different problem.)
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To: mmyers
 "Horse crap"

Are you talking about what you had for dinner or you don't believe what I posted?

For clarification, USDA isn't providing the money they're providing the mortgage insurance, just as FHA/HUD and VA do. If the borrower goes belly up USDA pays off the loan to the investors.

USDA Rural Development Housing & Community Facilities Programs.

Approved lenders under the Single Family Housing Guaranteed Loan program include:
    * Any State housing agency;
    * Lenders approved by:
          o HUD for submission of applications for Federal Housing Mortgage Insurance or as an issuer of Ginnie Mae mortgage backed securities;
          o the U.S. Veterans Administration as a qualified mortgagee;
          o Fannie Mae for participation in family mortgage loans;
          o Freddie Mac for participation in family mortgage loans;
    * Any FCS (Farm Credit System) institution with direct lending authority;
    * Any lender participating in other USDA Rural Development and/or Farm Service Agency guaranteed loan programs.

USDA has maps for each county in each state with the areas outlined where they offer Home Loan Guarantees.  I was at a property last month in a subdivision on a 1/3 acre lot in a suburban location that was being purchased using the Rural Housing and Development  program.  The only thing agriculture related about this property was the grass growing in the yard.

43 posted on 12/11/2007 7:34:35 PM PST by Rb ver. 2.0 (Global warming is the new Marxism.)
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To: All
I thought the best example was a CA Central Valley rancher who was interviewed a while back in front of his hangar and his $1,000,000+ racing P-51 plane explaining on TV why he deserved a govt. subsidy....
IIRC, it was because all the farmers got one, whether it was a good year or a bad year...
44 posted on 12/11/2007 7:39:50 PM PST by az_gila (AZ - need less democrats)
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To: mmyers

I see you’re taking heat for this, but you are right. The governments Cheap Food Policy has worked very well since at least the 1950’s.

Generally, it puts a floor on prices, insuring that farmers won’t go out of business, and also indirectly establishes a ceiling on prices.

The result is a lot farmers who are always living on the verge of bankruptcy, just one or two crops away from financial disaster.

The second result, which has been the governments primary objective, is massive amounts of foodstuffs at very low prices.

Hats off to the AMerican Farmer for surviving all this meddling.


45 posted on 12/11/2007 7:46:03 PM PST by Balding_Eagle (If America falls, darkness will cover the face of the earth for a thousand years.)
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To: shrinkermd

Haven’t Letterman and Turner complained about taxes not being high enough?


46 posted on 12/11/2007 7:49:59 PM PST by VeniVidiVici (No buy China!!)
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To: GovernmentShrinker
Manhattan agribusiness banker, still owns farmland in Nebraska where he’s originally from, definitely not living in any “Park Avenue penthouse”. Probably could make a lot more money if he sold the farmland to a developer and invested the proceeds in something else, but he doesn’t want to.

So not a farmer, no intent on being a farmer yet takes handouts anyway. Thanks man, so uncle Sam holds a gun to my head and gets 25 thousand dollars a year from me and this guy gets some part of that. Great dude.

47 posted on 12/11/2007 7:55:44 PM PST by Malsua
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To: mmyers

Stop the subsidies and keep my money in my OWN pockets, instead of lining Ted Turner’s pockets even more. Then I could AFFORD a burger. If you like such subsidies, you MUST be a liberal.


48 posted on 12/11/2007 7:59:57 PM PST by dcwusmc (We need to make government so small that it can be drowned in a bathtub.)
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To: Balding_Eagle; mmyers

Thanks for bringing the truth to another ‘bash the farmer’ thread.


49 posted on 12/11/2007 8:11:16 PM PST by JustaDumbBlonde
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To: okie01

“a reward... or not doing, a certain thing.
It’s not a welfare program.”
Getting paid to not do something sure sounds like welfare.


50 posted on 12/11/2007 8:12:02 PM PST by DancesWithBolsheviks (If someone is 'turning his life around' you best stay away.)
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