My name is Stanley Walters; I farm cotton and grain in central Alabama. I would argue that most, not “many” farmers care deeply for the environment. I don't need the SCS threatening me to conserve.
Every move I make has an impact on my soil and water and its impact is considered. As for the CRS, most farmers are not going to be impacted and the money is miniscule compared to demand.
The U.S. consumer is becoming more consumptive at an ever-increasing rate. Look at the size of houses compared to the 50s and 60s. The modern craze over SUVs is another example of wasteful consumption. If it were not for technology with the size of cars now we would be below 5 mpg (I have no data on this, just speculation). All this and the U.S. farmer is constantly producing more on less land and generally doing more with less, even returns.
I don't see how the world can cherry pick the parts of our farm bill they like (ironically the parts that leave more of the U.S. economy for the rest of the world) and criticize the parts that pay the bills for the farmer. The WTO would have the entire U.S. farm economy the way it is heading in central Alabama.
A Birmingham attorney makes millions on a product liability case and can't spend it all. He buys a “farm” for his personal entertainment, and then is amused when the U.S. government pays him to do nothing with it, which was what he was going to do anyway. This same person wonders why there is no restaurant in the nearby town and why the car dealership closed and then gripes that the bread at the store costs $2 a loaf. He just wasted a million dollars on a farm, and is worried about two-dollar bread! This same man next year will spend another half million putting up a deer-proof fence to improve his hunting. He will spend 16 days a year to kill 3 deer which he will get processed at $75 each, which yield about 120 pounds of usable meat (total) and then gripe about the $1.59 per pound hamburger at the store. You do the math.
The rest of the world is laughing at American agriculture.
Our buying power has been eroded over the past half century to the point that we can't afford to buy the neighbor's farm even while building it in our costs, while town folk buy it like a trip to the beach.
The American farmer doesn't over produce, we under produce. The U.S. economy consumes around 23 million bales of cotton annually in the form of cotton products. We as U.S. farmers produce 16 to 18 million bales. It seems we are making room at our table for quite a few foreign producers. The WTO is determined to not allow us to sit at our own table.
As far as the WTO, the U.S. is where the money is and this organization is simply a world organization to redistribute wealth. Why the U.S. would willingly allow such an erosion of its world influence is beyond me.