Proud Infidel ranting about the ongoing war against democratic and secular values (Don't fool yourselves)! Maybe a voice of sanity in a wide ocean of madness.

20080307

CAP again

Michel BarnierMinister of agriculture
Paris has posted a response to the chritics of CAP and their politics visavi the fact that 2% of the workforce in Europe (farmers) are getting 44% in subsides of EU:s total budget. See my earlier post on this here.

I will post his letter to The Economist here (LINK) with added comments in italics.

European farming today

SIR – Charlemagne flayed the “idiocy” of the European Union's common agricultural policy, and attacked France's position in particular (February 16th). To answer his criticisms in general terms, yes, I believe in a CAP that includes a certain territorial balance. Rural areas cover 90% of the EU's territory and are home to around 50% of its population. The future of agricultural policy is not about “assistance”, it is about rendering services to society, be it in terms of food security, the environment or the social development of rural areas. So intensive farming is not the only choice for the future; several agricultural models can coexist. It is viable economics to cater to and invest in high-end products, which are inevitably linked to the diversity of regional identities and produce.

Yes it is true that rural areas cover 90% of EU:s territory and that they hold about 50% of the population. But that's a question of definition. What is a rural area? in most places in central and south Europe you are within commuting distance from a town or a city! We have farming going on in the city I live in. Does that make this city of 140 000 people a "rural area"? But the fact still is that 2% of the workforce in the EU is getting 44% of the subsides- namely the farmers! It is also true that it is important that farmers try to get out high- end products- And if they do- they will sell! Bad products and producers will naturally go off the market- if they do- then they have to seek another profession and a way of living.

As for milk quotas, the big issue is not about getting the 2% increase right. I think we agree that the more important question is how to overhaul the CAP in response to future strategic challenges: growth, rural development, and the dire need to produce more and better food in Europe.

Why do we need to produce more food in Europe? We have no shortage of food, to the extent that we not only export and give away it to several countrys- mainly in the third world- but we also have draconic protective tolls on import of food from the very same places, which has the only result of heightening the poverty in those countrys and at the same time make food here that much more expensive! Politicians take the taxpayers money away and shove it back their throats (minus "administrative" costs of course). It is a pyramide scam of gigantic proportions!

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