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ibstubro's avatar

What do you believe the function of the USDA (United States Department of Agriculture) is?

Asked by ibstubro (18730points) March 20th, 2016

Would is surprise you that the USDA makes home loans to promote rural development?

That the USDA has extensive overseas programs giving and loaning tax money to foreign countries?

Not that these programs are bad, but wouldn’t it be more efficient for home loans to be consolidated under FHA and non-military foreign assistance under USAID

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12 Answers

stanleybmanly's avatar

The USDA is busy seeing to it that American farm products are pushed world wide. If you need the money to buy our stuff, they will facilitate the necessary loan. Like the rest of the government, the Department of Agriculture is in the business of servicing corporations at the expense of the rest of us, and this agency in particular is a prime example because with the USDA the connection is not one bit fuzzy.

zenvelo's avatar

Did you know that the National Forests are under the Department of Agriculture, not the Department of the Interior? Not just the replanted trees like tree farms, but the old growth timber.

But the USDA has widespread support. They dole out tons of money to farms and farmers every year.

Strauss's avatar

They dole out millions to multinational agri-corps as well.

Espiritus_Corvus's avatar

Hmmm. Community Empowerment Programs. Never heard of that. Did you guys actually read up on what they are talking about? There might be a way to get no and low interest seed money for a small model ag operation. You know all that cheap land on the east side of the Sierras nobody wants to live on? Those old ghost towns? That might be a good place to start up a Frankincense grove. Myrrh as well. Worth a fortune. These trees are dying off all over the Middle East countries, the traditional producers. I wonder if the gov would be interested in sustainable farming where there was nothing but dust before. Implant a little industry, a little economic action, maybe a few jobs, where there were none before. Community Empowerment. This is interesting stuff.

ibstubro's avatar

7 U.S. Code § 2201 – Establishment of Department
“There shall be at the seat of government a Department of Agriculture, the general design and duties of which shall be to acquire and to diffuse among the people of the United States useful information on subjects connected with agriculture, rural development, aquaculture, and human nutrition, in the most general and comprehensive sense of those terms, and to procure, propagate, and distribute among the people new and valuable seeds and plants.”

NPR reported that $130 million in U.S. grant money had been turned over to Planet Aid, a somewhat controversial charity, with virtually no oversight.
If you care to listen.

It just got me fired up an the incredible waste of the US federal government. Even if the programs were consolidated without reduction, trillions would be saved.

CWOTUS's avatar

To administer the Food Stamp program (by whatever name it now carries) and to respond to the Farm Lobby.

Jaxk's avatar

No government agency has any incentive to consolidate the efforts. They all create their own services crossing boundries with other agencies. More than 20 agencies grant student loans, more than 50 agencies regulate inland waterways, and the list goes on and on. None of this is a surprise and all contributes to waste and abuse.

stanleybmanly's avatar

But the USDA is particularly instructive in the workings of those agencies on behalf of the notion, that whatever benefits corporate hegemony is good for the country. Few Americans realize for example that the great and overwhelming beneficiaries of our many and very expensive farm subsidy programs are not the small and medium sized farmers these programs are supposedly designed to assist. The ultimate recipients of those dollars, even those filtered through mom & pop farming operations, are the huge conglomerates such as Archer Daniels Midlands, ConAgra, Monsanto, etc.

Jaxk's avatar

@stanleybmanly – You’re looking at this the wrong way. The original intention was to help small farmers. You can’t throw away a perfectly good, well intentioned, government give away program just because it doesn’t work. The obvious solution is to provide more funding and expand it :->

stanleybmanly's avatar

I get the sarcasm. But it wasn’t the small farmers that facilitated the program into an instrument for their own enslavement. The ADMs, Cargills, Etc. have with the able assistance of their whores in the Congress reduced the country ‘s farmers to corporate sharecroppers, slaving to enrich the corporations at taxpayer expense!! It’s another crystal clear example of the corporations raking in profits while the expenses are socialized.

CWOTUS's avatar

Yes, yes, @stanleybmanly … we get it.

Now will you acknowledge that the college administrators across the country and THEIR whores in Congress lobbied to increase financial aid to students … while they increased their own tuition at far higher than any rates of inflation could have possibly justified, while also seeing to it that ‘college degree required’ becomes a mantra for all hiring?

No? Didn’t think so.

But surely you will agree with all others who think as you do that if a government program is to blame for any ills in the country, then obviously more government will be the solution to the problem, too.

stanleybmanly's avatar

@CWOTUS. Ready for it ? Schools are corporations!!!!! And it isn’t the whores doing the lobbying. I agree with conservatives that big government is necessary to transfer your money and mine to the 1%. Where I disagree is on the assumption that since OUR government is for sale, government must be inherently evil. And you’re mistaken about the lobbying ability of inept college airheads. Their efforts were a joke. Sure they were happy for their inflated salaries, but to understand who REALLY facilitated galloping inflation defining a college education, consider just who it is raking in the REAL money in those trillions in student debt. You notice that just as with your health care, it isn’t exactly the government that hands you that check. Nope. It’s the banks who give you that government guaranteed loan and charge you interest at ABSOLUTELY NO RISK TO THEMSELVES. Of course colleges are going to inflate expenses skyward and textbooks are going to rise from 40 bucks to $800 dollars if the expense can be piled on the backs of the suckers compelled to participate. I know you get tired of me harping on this, but all of it, from the kids emerging from schools with crippling debt through the billions that will never be repaid, all of it is about shuttling money to the top. THAT is now the primary function of our government. If WE don’t have it, then our future earnings and those of our unborn children are funneled to the top. This is the REAL meaning of our accumulating debt as profits are privatized while expenses are socialized.

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