What reasons are there for and against government subsidizing farms?

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pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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There are a number of reasons for supporting farm subsidies.  There is the fact that farms have been the traditional backbone of America and therefore we feel that we should preserve them.  There is the fact that many rural areas depend on farm incomes and would be economically damaged without them.  Finally, there is the idea that we need to be sure that we can continue to produce enough food to feed ourselves so that we will not be dependent upon other countries in times of crisis.

The major argument against farm subsidies is that they hurt taxpayers and prop up uncompetitive sectors of the economy.  We as taxpayers must pay to subsidize sectors of the economy that either A) do not need it or B) would go broke without subsidies.  In a capitalist economy, we should not be forcing people to pay to support outdated industries that cannot compete on their own.

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