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Thu Mar 28, 2019, 12:23 PM

Bernie Sanders: I'll fight for farmers against powerful agribusiness [View all]

Bernie Sanders, Guest columnist Published 11:06 a.m. CT March 28, 2019

Excerpts:

In the end, the desperation felt by families in rural communities is about basic economic rights and freedom. Farmers have been systematically stripped of their ability to control their own futures and no longer know whether their hard work will earn them future success and stability. Storefronts are empty and farmers have been forced to sell their land that has been kept in families for generations to massive corporations.

For the massive agribusinesses that control much of rural America, itís a different story. These corporations have seen profits skyrocket and compensation packages for CEOs increase to record levels.

But nothing sums up our rigged agricultural industry quite like the Bayer-Monsanto megamerger.

The prices for corn seed have doubled and prices for chemicals used in farming have roughly tripled in the last 30 years. Yet, the Trump administration was happy to give these two conglomerates 78 percent of the corn seed market. While that deal could end up further jacking up seed prices for Iowa corn farmers, the CEO of Monsanto was rewarded with a golden parachute worth up to $32 million.

This massive transfer of wealth from working people in Americaís heartland to corporate CEOs is having more than just a financial toll on rural America. It has led to personal pain as entire rural communities are devastated by opioid addiction and a too-often-ignored mental health crisis has led to a spike in farmer suicides.

This is not happening by accident. It is the result of Washington putting the interests of the top 1 percent first. That is why, now more than ever, we need policies that represent the needs of working people and family farmers, not big agribusiness and multinational corporations.

https://www.desmoinesregister.com/story/opinion/columnists/caucus/2019/03/28/bernie-sanders-president-2020-caucus-agribusiness-factory-farming-rural-america-iowa-flood-trump-ceo/3297096002/

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Reply Bernie Sanders: I'll fight for farmers against powerful agribusiness [View all]
Donkees Mar 2019 OP
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