So that the American farming industry can compete on a global level. Otherwise, foods produced in other countries (such as African countries) would be much cheaper and people would buy that. Also, it has to do with a strong agricultural lobby based in states where agriculture still represents a large percentage of total output.
On a global scale, it is somewhat hypocritical because we give poorer countries aid (via the WTO and IMF), yet we make them drop their agricultural subisidies in order to recieve this aid (we are not the only country that does this, most wealthy countries rely on agricultural subsidies to sustain their agricultural indstries).
While there are some short term benefits to having agricultural subsidies, a question arises as to whether we should spend so much money proping up an indsutry that would otherwise not be able to compete, at least the way it is run now, without these subsidies. Shouldn’t we concentrate subsides on more important growing industries, such as renewable energy?
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