The last time we sent off our W-9s and cast our ballots, we don’t remember consenting to Congress aiding and abetting an industrial agriculture system that pollutes our land, pumps our food with harmful chemicals, and puts family farmers out of business. And we certainly didn’t consent to them botching the budget or undermining the American Dream. Yet, Congress continues to legislate the 1 percent’s policies without listening to the people. One might wonder if they still believe in the democratic process? Did they forget their dismal 9% approval rating? And are they completely ignoring the hundreds of “We are the 99 percent” protests across the country? Seems like Congress needs to be checked—big time.
Recognizing that these are pretty strong words, here’s a short list of why we think it’s important to tell it like it is, sans the subsidized sugar-coating:
- 1. It’s NOT OK for Congress to hand our tax dollars over to wealthy commercial farmers, who have an average income of $200,000 and an average net worth of just under $2 million. Between 1995 and 2010, Congress dished out $167,331,000,000 in farm subsidies, with most of them going to industrial agribusiness instead of to the sustainable and family farmers who need our support.
- 2. It’s NOT OK for Congress to ignore the American people. Just this month—against the demands of over 50 farmer, fisher, and rancher organizations—Congress passed three new free trade agreements that yet again undermine American farmers and workers.
- 3. It’s NOT OK for Congress to turn the blind eye to rising rates of childhood obesity, diabetes, and other diet-related diseases. With 41 percent of the House and 66 percent of the Senate banking at least $1 million in 2009, it’s no surprise that Congress has historically voted on the side of the fat cats—including the industrial agriculture companies that promote an unhealthy and unsustainable America with the aid of their trustyposse of lobbyists.
- 4. It’s NOT OK for Congress to butcher the budget (again)! The deadline for the Super Committee to make its deficit-slashing recommendations is coming up quick and it’s looking like business as usual—unless we give them our recipe for change!