The secret of health for both mind and body is not to mourn for the past,
worry about the future, or anticipate troubles, but to live in the presentmoment wisely and earnestly.”
_The Daily Tonic is a two to five minute read sharing science backed
health news and tips, all while getting you to crack a smile or even_ lol on occasion.
Thursday. Our broken food system is… brutally complicated. Kind of likenavigating politics at a dinner party. Ok, maybe not that brutally complicatedbut you get the point.
So how did we get here? Farm subsidies are one of the reasons that often getthrown around as a big underlying contributor to where our food system istoday. But what the heck are farm subsidies? Why did they start, how do theywork, and most importantly–why are they still around? Let’s dive in.
Our Government Knows Exactly What It’s Doing
Ha! Speaking of politics, that was my attempt at humor. Moving on… Farmsubsidies are federal crop insurance policies that were originally put inplace following the turmoil of the Great Depression and the Dust Bowl in the1930s. It was all put in place with good intentions–the government wanted toprotect rural farmers and ensure a steady supply of calories to Americans at atime when hunger was a real issue. The way crop insurance worked back then wasfairly simple–if demand for a commodity crop went down, farmers would get lessfor what they produced. In order to guarantee a living wage for farmers thatwere hard at work to feed the country, the federal government would step in ifprices got too low, and pay the difference to help farmers out. It was a win-win. Americans got food and farmers got paid. Fast forward almost 100 yearsand these same subsidies are less of a win-win and more of a lose-lose-lose.Today, more than 300 million acres of land are covered under federal cropinsurance policies, 39% of net farm income comes directly from these subsidies-and the kicker? 60% of that money is paid by thetaxpayer,aka you and me. So what’s the problem? I don’t mind some of my tax money goingtowards supporting hard working farmers… Eh… if only that were actually thecase. In yet another example of our federal government’s infinite wisdom, farmsubsidies are still set up to incentivize the cultivation of monoculturecommodity crops (soy, corn, wheat). This made sense 100 years ago, whencalories were scarce and our country was starving, but spoiler alert–one quicklook around will make it clear to you that Americans are no longer starving.We have plenty of cheap calories to go around these days. So guess who getsthe bulk of this subsidy money? Not hard working farmers, but rather bigagribusiness and wealthy landowners. Here’s a stat to make you cringe nexttime you see your federal tax withholding on your paycheck–between 1995 to2014, 50 people on the Forbes 400 list of the wealthiest Americans receivedmore than $6.3 million in farm subsidies. And remember–all this financialincentive to grow cheap commodity crops isn’t doing our health or the healthof our planet any favors. GMO soy and commodity corn are making us sick andmonoculture farming is depleting the soil. It’s a true lose-lose-lose. Thesolution? Evade taxes and shop at farmer’s markets. Ok, obviously don’t evadetaxes–that’s a crime–but shopping from your local farmer isn’t, so let’s startthere.
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On Today’s Edition Of Hackers Hacking…
And the latest victim–Peloton riders. Turns out your $2,500 bike comes withcreepy hacker access included. In a report released Wednesday, cybersecuritycompany McAfee discovered a vulnerability that allows hackers to accessPeloton’s bike screen and potentially spy on riders using its microphone and camera.That’s slightly terrifying. Maybe as the world opens back up, we can all spendsome more time getting our fitness on outside, in the sun, and with other realpeople. Just a thought.
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- Need help finding your local farmer to support? Check out this website!
- Need a restock on your favorite Keto products? Don’t forget that code TDT gets your 15% off the shop!
- Can’t get enough regenerative agriculture? OMG–me neither! Check out this podcast.
Health isn’t just about _ food, movement, and mindset . It is alsoabout the_ _ interactions _we have and what we _ share with our fellowhumans._
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