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Iowa Ag Review

Abstract

Next year the new Congress will again debate what to do about farm policy. Farm-state representatives and senators will offer various proposals to remedy the ills of agriculture. In turn, farm organizations, environmental groups, and other concerned parties will try to determine how the various proposals best serve their own interests. There is, however, a recurring, fundamental question that has yet to be addressed satisfactorily: What do we actually want farm policy to do? Some would argue for payments to maintain rural vitality. Others propose programs that would link farm income support with enhanced environmental stewardship. And still others suggest maintaining a minimum level of farm income through counter-cyclical payments

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