Friday, May 21, 2010

Cotton Pickin', Cotton Picking Subsidies!! You get to pay Brazilians for growing Cotton

U.S., Brazil reach accord on cotton subsidies
Let me get this straight---Brazil wins an appeal to the WTO in regards to excessive subsidies the US Government pays to US cotton farmers.  Brazil now has the right to retaliate against the subsidies by putting tariffs on OTHER US goods that are exported to Brazil:
On March 8, Brazil announced a final list of products that would face higher tariffs beginning April 7. Those goods included autos, pharmaceuticals, medical equipment, electronics, textiles, wheat, fruits, nuts and cotton. Brazil hadn't made a final decision on which U.S. intellectual property rights might be affected but it was in the process of deciding.
The tariffs Brazil would impose would amount to approximately $147.3 million...BUT as a result of intensive negotiations, Brazil WILL NOT impose those tariffs.  Instead the US Govt will,  "establish an annual fund of around $147.3 million to provide technical assistance and capacity building for Brazil's cotton industry."  Read that again, please...Now we will be subsidizing not only US cotton farmers but Brazilian cotton farmers too!!  According to the WSJ, cotton subsidies for 2009 amounted to $2.3 billion and 10% of cotton farmers received 70% of the subsidies (click HERE for data on top recipients).  Corporate cotton farmers get paid by taxpayers AND because of interest group politics lobbying self-serving politicians who don't worry about spending other peoples money, we get to compensate Brazilian cotton farmers as well...Does this make sense to you?? Am I overly sensitive???
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