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Arizona Debate Institute 2008 Fellows

Econ DA /
Economy Disad Index

ECONOMY DISAD INDEX................................................................................................................................................................1


HINGSTMAN 4..............................................................................................................................................................................1
1NC – ECONOMY DISAD..............................................................................................................................................................2
1NC – ECONOMY DISAD..............................................................................................................................................................3
1NC – ECONOMY DISAD..............................................................................................................................................................4
FOOD PRICES LINK.......................................................................................................................................................................5
AGRICULTURE INDUSTRY LINK........................................................................................................................................................6
AGRICULTURE INDUSTRY LINK........................................................................................................................................................7
AGRICULTURE INDUSTRY LINK........................................................................................................................................................8
FARMER CONFIDENCE LINK............................................................................................................................................................9
AT: SUBSIDIES LOWER FOOD PRICES............................................................................................................................................10
AT: SUBSIDIES BAD FOR FARMERS...............................................................................................................................................11
AT: SUBSIDIES LEAD TO OVERPRODUCTION...................................................................................................................................12
AGRICULTURE KEY TO THE ECONOMY..........................................................................................................................................13
AGRICULTURE KEY TO THE ECONOMY..........................................................................................................................................14
AGRICULTURE KEY TO FOOD SECURITY........................................................................................................................................15
BIOFUELS KEY TO THE ECONOMY................................................................................................................................................16
BIOFUELS KEY TO THE ECONOMY................................................................................................................................................17
SUBSIDIES BAD – TRADE.............................................................................................................................................................18
SUBSIDIES BAD – DEVELOPING ECONOMIES...................................................................................................................................19
SUBSIDIES BAD – ENVIRONMENT..................................................................................................................................................20

HINGSTMAN 4

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Arizona Debate Institute 2008 Fellows
Econ DA /
1NC – Economy Disad

A.) UNIQUENESS –

Key indicators prove economy strong now- jobs and GDP overwhelm any negative trends
NOVAK, National Review staff writer, 7/17/2008
[Michael, "Our 'Horrible' Economy," online]

Everyone says that our economy is “horrible.” Gas for our cars is headed toward $5 a gallon. The stock
market has turned seriously downward. Unemployment is edging upward (although the unemployment
rate is still holding about even).
Yet two basic points make it difficult for this amateur to see just why our current economy is so
horrible. For me, the most important issue in any economy of any democratic republic is job growth.
In 1976, I wrote speeches for Senator Henry M. “Scoop” Jackson (D., Wash.), in which the three main
priorities of his campaign were identified, in this order, as “Jobs, jobs, job
The second-most-important thing for a democratic society, to my mind, is that there be consistent
economic growth. The reason is that the most destructive of all human social passions is envy. If there is
no growth, the only way people have to vaunt themselves is to tear others down. (In nearly all static
societies, envy sparks immense social frictions.) In a growing economy, by contrast, people have a chance
to stop comparing themselves with their neighbors (and tearing them down). Instead, they can work as
hard as they can to meet their own goals. If their own position tomorrow will be significantly closer to
their heart’s desire than it is today, then they don’t need to care how their neighbor is doing.
A republic like the United States simply must defeat envy, and focus on a better future for each family.
The only way that can be accomplished is by reasonably consistent and gently upward economic growth.
Growth is the necessary condition for the pursuit by each of his own happiness. A happy society is a more
generous and loving society.
In this light, the U.S. — with a growing GDP from the year 2000 until today, along with a steady
growth in the number (and percentage) of people employed — is better off than almost all nations in
Europe. Whatever else is happening in the U.S. economy today, these are very good indicators.
U.S. output today is just about 40 percent higher than it was when President Clinton left office. The
nominal GDP has grown from $10 trillion at the end of 2001 to $14 trillion at the end of January 2008.
In other words, the U.S. has added to its national wealth an equivalent to the whole nominal GDP of
China (in 2007, $3.25 trillion). The U.S. today is as big as it was in 2001, plus the whole GDP of
China.

2
Arizona Debate Institute 2008 Fellows
Econ DA /
1NC – ECONOMY DISAD

B.) LINK –

ELIMINATNG SUBSIDIES MAKES US AGRICULTURE UNSUSTAINABLE

Beitel, 2005
Karl Beitel, policy analyst at Food First/Institute for Food and Development Policy, US Farm Subsidies
and the Farm Economy: Myths, Realities, Alternatives, 8-23-05,
http://www.foodfirst.org/backgrounders/subsidies
Pursuing such alternatives is an urgent necessity. Market liberalization does not, in itself, launch
developing countries on a path of sustainable long-term growth capable of lifting their populations out of
poverty. In fact the market, left to operate free from government intervention, will only exacerbate
economic pressures in large segments of the rural farm sector, both in the US and globally. The
farm sector has historically been subjected to extensive regulatory controls, which are needed to
compensate for the market’s inherent failures. An alternative to crippling free market policies exists:
what is required is the political will to bring it about. Progressive agricultural and trade groups North
and South must move beyond the subsidy debate and unite in support of alternatives that will
sustain the world’s farmers and ecosystems.

AND – AGRICULTURE IS KEY TO THE U.S. ECONOMY


O. Shawn Cupp; 2004
Assistant Professor, Department of Logistics and Resource Operations, United States Army Command
and General Staff College, Agroterrorism in the US: Key Security Challenges for the 21st Century,
http://bcbsma.medscape.com/viewarticle/482308
Agriculture is one of the easiest sectors of the U.S. economy to disrupt, and its disruption could have
catastrophic consequences for the U.S. and world economies. Agriculture in the U.S. accounts for 13% of
the current Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and provides employment for 15% of the population. It produces
high-quality, cheap, plentiful food for domestic consumption and accounts for more than $50 billion in
exports. The likelihood of terrorist acts interrupting the production, processing, and distribution of agricultural
products is high: A number of different possible plant or animal pathogens could cause harm or loss of
production, and even an act of agroterrorism that did not result in the destruction of foodstuffs or interruptions
in the food supply could have a psychological impact. A number of recent unintentional events and epidemics
have prompted the U.S. and other countries to provide resources to counteract contagious diseases and contain
their impact, including increased funding to federal agencies that are responsible for protecting domestic
agriculture. This article presents recommendations to protect agriculture, including changing the way
agriculture is viewed on the federal level and increasing the resources to protect agriculture from terrorist
attack.

3
Arizona Debate Institute 2008 Fellows
Econ DA /
1NC – ECONOMY DISAD

C.) IMPACT – U.S. ECONOMY KEY TO THE WORLD ECONOMY

The Independent, 2006 (9/25, http://news.independent.co.uk/business/comment/article1747133.ece)

If the US slows down, the global economy won't be doing very well. In many ways, the US is the global economy. The US
accounts for 33 per cent of global output. The UK and Australia, at 5 per cent and 1 per cent of global output, are minnows. So
long as the US is booming, smaller economies can keep their heads above water. But who can keep the US's head above
water? China and India may be growing quickly, but they're still too small and not sufficiently developed to provide the
lifeboat that would be needed should the US slip up. Only the eurozone and Japan could play that role and neither would find
it easy: with limited room for manoeuvre on policy, they could easily come unstuck in the light of a US slowdown, particularly if
their currencies were to appreciate against an arthritic dollar.

AND – GLOBAL ECONOMIC COLLAPSE CAUSES EXTINCTION

Bearden, 2000 (T.E., Director of the Association of Distinguished American Scientists, “The Unnecessary Energy Crisis: How
To Solve It Quickly”, Space Energy Access Systems, http://www.seaspower.com/EnergyCrisis-Bearden.htm)

History bears out that desperate nations take desperate actions. Prior to the final economic collapse, the stress on nations
will have increased the intensity and number of their conflicts, to the point where the arsenals of weapons of mass
destruction (WMD) now possessed by some 25 nations, are almost certain to be released. As an example, suppose a starving
North Korea launches nuclear weapons upon Japan and South Korea, including U.S. forces there, in a spasmodic suicidal
response. Or suppose a desperate China — whose long-range nuclear missiles (some) can reach the United States — attacks
Taiwan. In addition to immediate responses, the mutual treaties involved in such scenarios will quickly draw other nations
into the conflict, escalating it significantly. Strategic nuclear studies have shown for decades that, under such extreme stress
conditions, once a few nukes are launched, adversaries and potential adversaries are then compelled to launch on perception of
preparations by one's adversary. The real legacy of the MAD concept is this side of the MAD coin that is almost never
discussed. Without effective defense, the only chance a nation has to survive at all is to launch immediate full-bore pre-
emptive strikes and try to take out its perceived foes as rapidly and massively as possible. As the studies showed, rapid
escalation to full WMD exchange occurs. Today, a great percent of the WMD arsenals that will be unleashed, are already on
site within the United States itself. The resulting great Armageddon will destroy civilization as we know it, and perhaps most
of the biosphere, at least for many decades.

4
Arizona Debate Institute 2008 Fellows
Econ DA /
FOOD PRICES LINK

DECREASING SUBSIDIES RAISES FOOD PRICES

STROKES, 2006 (BRUCE STROKES, NATIONAL JOURNAL, 3-11-06, DOHA’S WINNERS AND LOSERS)

Contrary to conventional wisdom that poor-country farmers have the most to gain from ending rich-country agricultural
subsidies and protection, developing countries could actually be slightly worse off after the round. Only a few such nations --
Argentina, Brazil, South Africa, and Thailand -- would be big agricultural beneficiaries under the Carnegie forecast. Most
farmers in poor countries would suffer because they aren't globally competitive and they wouldn't be well positioned to take
advantage of new market opportunities in Europe and the United States. Moreover, many of the poorest nations now enjoy
preferential access to rich-country markets, a benefit that will be eliminated in a new trade deal. And, since a decline in U.S. and
other farm subsidies will lead to global price rises for many commodities, developing countries that are net food importers could
see their food bills rise.

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Arizona Debate Institute 2008 Fellows
Econ DA /
Agriculture Industry Link

SUBSIDIES ARE KEY TO THE FARM ECONOMY

Dr. Robert Goodman, Alabama Cooperative Extension System Farm Economist and Auburn University
Associate Professor of Agricultural Economics, 2004 “A Five-Point Defense of Farm Subsidies”
http://www.alfafarmers.org/issues/farm_programs.phtml
Unpredictability, either in the form of natural or man-made disasters, remains the biggest challenge
associated with farming both from the standpoint of the producer and the consumer. Despite the bad
press they've garnered recently, Goodman believes subsidies serve two critical purposes --- protecting
farmers from drastic fluctuations in commodity prices often caused by weather or market setbacks and
consumers from the price spikes associated with steep drops in crop inventories. Throughout history, crop
failures were facts of life driven home with horrifying frequency until the 20th century when farm price
supports became common. "During famine, food became scarce and prices spiked," Goodman says.
"Now, thanks to subsidies, we are --- to some degree, at least, better protected by these higher food
reserves. Critics argue that subsidies create an excessive and even burdensome oversupply of inventory.
To a great extent, that's true, Goodman says. On the other hand, he argues, the huge year-to-year
carryover of large inventories safeguards against huge prices fluctuations that otherwise would follow
natural or market-driven setbacks. "Simply put, subsidies promote stability by protecting consumers
from high prices and farmers from low prices and, ultimately, bankruptcy," he says.

Subsidies economically sustain then entire agricultural industry

Dr. Robert Goodman, Alabama Cooperative Extension System Farm Economist and Auburn University
Associate Professor of Agricultural Economics, 2004 “A Five-Point Defense of Farm Subsidies”
http://www.alfafarmers.org/issues/farm_programs.phtml

One of the major misconceptions associated with farm subsidies, particularly among consumers, is that
producers are the only ones who benefit --- not true, says Goodman. Subsidies virtually guarantee that products
such as corn, cotton and wheat are produced in large amounts --- a factor that not only benefits producers but
others along the food-processing and marketing chain. "It's not just the final products we eat that are affected
by these payments but the building blocks along the way that comprise the food production and distribution
chain," Goodman says. "Farmers receive direct benefits, but others along the way benefit indirectly through
cheaper production inputs, which, in turn, contribute to lower production costs."

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Arizona Debate Institute 2008 Fellows
Econ DA /
Agriculture Industry Link

Agricultural subsidies are critical to stabilizing the domestic agricultural sector.


Jeff NUNLEY is the executive director of South Texas Cotton and Grain Association, Farm Policy Facts, “A Safety Net for
All Americans” 2007, http://www.farmpolicyfacts.org/mm_safety_net_for_americans.cfm

Recently, one of my neighbors in town was complaining about our U.S. farm program. He made the statement that he
wished the government would subsidize his income, like it did for farmers. My response was that our farm program did
subsidize his income. How? By keeping food costs low. This frees up income that can be spent on other things. Most
people won't do the math. Farm subsidies amount to about 0.3% of the federal budget. That means if you're paying $5,000
per year in federal income taxes (payroll taxes don't count), the portion of your tax bill to provide food security for this
country would be about $15. The return on investment of that fifteen dollars is pretty good. You get a cheap, safe, and
affordable food supply. We keep a domestic agriculture sector (so we don't have to commit military troops in other
countries to ensure our food supply, like we do with oil). We provide an underpinning for our entire agriculture sector
which represents 20% of our GDP. We contribute to the balance of foreign trade. Agriculture exports are a significant
factor in lowering our trade deficit. This helps support the value of our currency, which increases our consumers' buying
power for imported goods and improves our standard of living. Since most payments are capitalized into the value of
land, we support rural, urban, and school taxing entities that rely on ad valorem taxes for funding. Figure out what school
districts and other taxing entities would lose if row crop farm land went out of production and back into pasture. To fill
that hole, the increase in your property taxes would probably cost more than three-tenths of 1% of your federal income
taxes. Food prices in the U.S. are very stable and have been declining gradually over time. When I was in college in the
mid 1980's, Americans spent about 17% of their disposable income on food. Today that number is around 9.5%. This is
even more impressive when you consider we buy more expensive ready-to-eat prodducts now than we did 20 years ago.
According to Farm Bureau, Americans work about 5 weeks to pay for their annual food expenses. In France it would take
more than 9 weeks, in Japan more than 13 weeks and in Mexico more than 17 weeks. I don't know about you, but an
additional four weeks of work to buy groceries is more than three-tenths of 1% of my federal income taxes.

Agricultural subsidies are critical to the survival of mid-sized farms, which are the backbone of the
agricultural sector.
Thomas L. Daniels is an Associate Professor of Regional and Community Planning at Kansas State University, where he
teaches rural and small town planning. He holds a Ph.D. in Agricultural Economics from Oregon State University and is
co-author ofRural Planning and Development in the United States, “A rationale for the support of the medium-sized
family farm”, Agriculture and Human Values, Volume 6, Number 4 / September, 1989,
http://www.springerlink.com/content/u47213302tj16214/
The current financial stress in the countryside and the future of the family farm are likely to be major issues in the
formulation of the 1990 Farm Bill. Medium-sized commercial family farms may be especially targeted for support. These
farms are the basis of rural economies and settlement patterns in many parts of nonmetropolitan America. Two possible
changes in farm policy are debt restructuring and the decoupling of farm payments from commodity production. Many
medium-sized family farms continue to face substantial debt problems, but most of these farms could be viable with some
debt restructuring. Ccmmodity programs have become extremely expensive and encourage overproduction and the
consolidation of farming resources into ever larger units. Federal farm programs may become based on need, with a
sensitivity to differences in regional farming systems. Such a policy could support medium-sized family farms, slow the
growth in superfarms, reduce surpluses, and reduce the overall cost of farm programs.

7
Arizona Debate Institute 2008 Fellows
Econ DA /
Agriculture Industry Link

Plan complicates future investments for the farm economy


DELTA FARM PRESS 3-10-05
HTTP://DELTAFARMPRESS.COM/NEWS/031005RAY-COLUMN/
The changes that will affect most farmers who plant program crops are changes in direct payments, loan
deficiency payments (LDP), marketing loan gains (MLG), and counter-cyclical payments (CCP). If prices
for the coming year were to be at last spring's levels, the proposed changes would attract little attention.
However, with prices in the tank and moving sideways to downward, anything that affects LDPs, MLGs,
and CCPs will have a direct impact on producers' household income.
Rather than making changes in the loan rate, savings in the LDP and MLG programs will be achieved by
reducing the amount of production that is eligible for these programs. Presently, marketing loan benefits
(LDPs and MLGs) are paid on the total production of program crops, subject to the payment limit. In the
proposed budget, the amount of crops eligible for these benefits will be limited to the direct payment yield
times 85 percent of the reported acreage. For some producers this will represent a double cut because of
the 85 percent and because their actual yield is higher than the direct payment yield.
Coupled with lower direct payments, reductions in marketing loan benefits could be significant during a
year of low prices. Sen. Tom Harkin, D-Iowa, gives an example of what these cuts would mean to an Iowa
farm with 250 acres of corn and 150 acres of soybeans. "If President Bush's proposal had been in place for
the 2004 crop year, this Iowan would have lost $7,700 in farm income in one year alone,” Harkin says.
“This may not seem like a lot, but to a farmer earning $40,000 annually, it represents a nearly 20 percent
drop in income." You may want to provide your legislator with a comparison of the payments you
received under the current program with those you would have received as a result of the proposed budget
changes.

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Arizona Debate Institute 2008 Fellows
Econ DA /
Farmer Confidence Link

Subsidies are vital to farmer confidence.


SOUTHWEST FARM PRESS 2-17-05 BUDGET CUTS COUNTERPRODUCTIVE FOR CONSISTENT, SAFE FOOD SUPPLY
HTTP://SOUTHWESTFARMPRESS.COM/NEWS/050217-COLUMN-FOOD-SUPPLY/
The U.S. farm program plays an important role, too, providing a safety net that helps farmers survive
when prices fall or when calamity strikes. That safety net could be weakened by severe cuts in the
agriculture budget. Payment limitations, especially hard on farmers who have expanded to improve
efficiency, hamper producers’ abilities to make a profit.
Most farmers, probably 99.99 percent, prefer to get their incomes from the marketplace. If the world were
an equal opportunity market, where every agricultural competitor played by the same rules and operated
under the same restrictions, U.S. agriculture would thrive. But that’s a fairly tale.
The truth is, taxpayers get a bargain from the small percentage of their contributions (one-half of one
percent of the total U.S. budget) that supports agricultural programs. “Food in America remains
affordable, thanks to the farmers and ranchers who produce it,” says the Farm Bureau.
The administration should rethink its proposal to take deep cuts from agriculture. It’s one of our most
cost-effective and far-reaching programs.

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Arizona Debate Institute 2008 Fellows
Econ DA /
AT: Subsidies Lower Food Prices

Subsidies are not the driver of food price decline


Beitel, 2005
Karl Beitel, policy analyst at Food First/Institute for Food and Development Policy, US Farm Subsidies
and the Farm Economy: Myths, Realities, Alternatives, 8-23-05,
http://www.foodfirst.org/backgrounders/subsidies
It is true that subsidies sustain production even as prices fall below the cost of production. But claims that
subsidies are a primary cause of declining prices are confusing; the reality is more complex.
In part, the present confusion over the real effect of subsidies on price results from a failure to take a
longer-term view of the US farm sector. When we examine the real, inflation-adjusted prices for several
major US commodity crops over the last sixty years, two facts stand out: that these prices have declined
steadily over sixty years; and that the price decline since 1996 has been far less severe than in previous
periods, such as the years 1973 to 1986.[2] These two facts suggest that other factors underlie the longer-
term decline, and that we must be careful in attributing recent trends in price chiefly to subsidies.
Furthermore, a 1998 upsurge in subsidy payments was triggered in response to falling prices, not the other
way around. And prices fell not because of subsidies, but because the remaining vestiges of supply
management programs were phased out in 1996, leading to increased competitive pressures on the supply
side of the market.[3] Clearly, we cannot explain falling prices and stressed conditions in the global farm
economy simply by pointing to the market-distorting effects of US commodity subsidies.

10
Arizona Debate Institute 2008 Fellows
Econ DA /
AT: Subsidies Bad For Farmers

Eliminating subsidies does not benefit world farmers


Beitel, 2005
Karl Beitel, policy analyst at Food First/Institute for Food and Development Policy, US Farm Subsidies
and the Farm Economy: Myths, Realities, Alternatives, 8-23-05,
http://www.foodfirst.org/backgrounders/subsidies
To support the claim that eliminating US subsidies would boost both world commodity prices and farmer
incomes in the developing world, critics cite studies that model the effects of phasing out US and EU farm
supports on global output and prices.[7]
But since these models rest on different assumptions, each yields different results—some estimating
world price increases of 1.8 to 3.7 percent over ten to fifteen years,[8] others, that prices would decrease
up to 3 percent.[9] Even the best case would lead to modest price increases and very limited benefits to
select farmers.
So if subsidies are not driving declining commodity prices, what is? If eliminating subsidies won’t really
help poor farmers, what will?

11
Arizona Debate Institute 2008 Fellows
Econ DA /
AT: Subsidies Lead To Overproduction

Subsidies don’t lead to overproduction


Beitel, 2005
Karl Beitel, policy analyst at Food First/Institute for Food and Development Policy, US Farm Subsidies
and the Farm Economy: Myths, Realities, Alternatives, 8-23-05,
http://www.foodfirst.org/backgrounders/subsidies
By keeping afloat farms that currently sell goods at below production costs, subsidies can indeed
contribute to higher overall supply. But they are not the primary cause of overproduction; nor is excess
supply the primary cause of falling prices and faltering farm incomes. Again, we need a more nuanced
account of the actual causal effects.
Overproduction refers to a situation in which current supply exceeds current demand. Excess inventories
accumulate, and prices fall. If overproduction caused the longer-term price decline, we would expect to
see excess inventories rising as prices fall.[4] But inventories (in relation to usage) have remained
constant or fallen for all major commodity crops (corn, rice, wheat, soy, and cotton) since the early
1980s.[5] Thus falling prices do not appear to be caused by overproduction, either before or after the 1996
subsidies were enacted. And (with the possible exception of cotton), this data offers no compelling
evidence that subsidies as such are causing stocks to rise.[6]
Critics might argue that subsidy-fueled overproduction is being exported, or “dumped” overseas, and
that’s why we don’t have climbing surpluses at home. The data don’t appear to support this theory either:
both the percentage of total domestic production that is exported and the US’ overall share of total world
exports are either constant or falling for almost all major US commodity groups since the early 1980s—
including the period after 1996.

12
Arizona Debate Institute 2008 Fellows
Econ DA /
Agriculture Key To The Economy

US agriculture is key to the economy


Raisbeck, 2003
David W. Raisbeck, Vice Chairman, Cargill, Incorporated, The Role of Agriculture in the Global
Economy, May 18, 2003, http://www.cargill.com/news/media/030518raisbeck.htm
Let me begin with some observations about commercial agriculture – the part of agriculture that most
clearly is operating in the global economy. Fifty years ago, the United States was the largest agricultural
exporter, doing about $3 billion in sales per year. Six of its top ten customers were in Western Europe;
two more – Japan and Canada – also were developed countries; India, a food aid recipient, and pre-Castro
Cuba were the only developing countries that were major markets.
Today, U.S. agricultural exports top $50 billion a year. Six of its top ten customers are developing
countries, and three-fourths of U.S. agricultural exports go to Asia and the Americas.

AGRICULTURE IS KEY TO THE ECONOMY


O. Shawn Cupp; 2004
Assistant Professor, Department of Logistics and Resource Operations, United States Army Command
and General Staff College, Agroterrorism in the US: Key Security Challenges for the 21st Century,
http://bcbsma.medscape.com/viewarticle/482308
Agriculture is one of the easiest sectors of the U.S. economy to disrupt, and its disruption could have
catastrophic consequences for the U.S. and world economies. Agriculture in the U.S. accounts for 13% of the
current Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and provides employment for 15% of the population. It produces high-
quality, cheap, plentiful food for domestic consumption and accounts for more than $50 billion in exports. The
likelihood of terrorist acts interrupting the production, processing, and distribution of agricultural products is
high: A number of different possible plant or animal pathogens could cause harm or loss of production, and even
an act of agroterrorism that did not result in the destruction of foodstuffs or interruptions in the food supply
could have a psychological impact. A number of recent unintentional events and epidemics have prompted the
U.S. and other countries to provide resources to counteract contagious diseases and contain their impact,
including increased funding to federal agencies that are responsible for protecting domestic agriculture. This
article presents recommendations to protect agriculture, including changing the way agriculture is viewed on the
federal level and increasing the resources to protect agriculture from terrorist attack.

13
Arizona Debate Institute 2008 Fellows
Econ DA /
Agriculture Key To The Economy

AGRICULTURAL INDUSTRY IS KEY TO THE ECONOMY


FITZGERALD ‘99
(Senator Peter G., R-Ill., “Illinois Needs Sound Farm Policy”, 2-28,
http://fitzgerald.senate.gov/index.cfm?FuseAction=Articles.Detail&Article_id=69&Month=2&Year=1999
|Agriculture is critical to both the economy of America and Illinois. Including related industries, agriculture is
the nation's largest employer. Illinois' 76,000 farms cover more than 28 million acres, nearly 80 percent of our
state's land. Illinois farm product sales generate more than $9 billion annually.
When I entered the U.S. Senate last November, I worked hard to secure a seat on the Senate Agriculture
Committee so that our state and our farmers could have a strong voice in Washington. We need to focus
on three areas: opening new overseas markets for farm products, reducing the federal tax and regulatory
burden on farmers and rural businesses and ensuring farmers have adequate risk management tools.
Illinois farmers depend on foreign trade for their economic well being. In 1997, Illinois exported $3.7
billion in agricultural commodities, ranking third among all states. But over the last three years, farm
exports dropped nationwide, putting many Illinois farmers at risk.
Congress and U.S. trade officials should work to ensure that American farmers are able to sell their
products in the world market. In my first legislative act as Senator, I joined four colleagues to introduce
legislation requiring U.S. trade officials to make eliminating agriculture trade barriers a top priority in
U.S. trade negotiations, so that our farmers can compete on a level playing field and fight for a better
share of retail agriculture sales.
I support fast-track trade negotiating authority, so that the Administration can be in a better position to tear
down international trade barriers. We must, at the same time, work to ensure that our trading partners
adhere to all existing trade agreements.
Eliminating the estate tax on family farmers will ensure that farms can be passed on to the next
generation. According to USDA figures, farmers are six times more likely to face inheritance taxes than
other Americans. Family farmers work hard and pay taxes throughout their lives. They build a productive
and successful family business, and hope eventually to pass it on to their children. A farm's value is stored
overwhelmingly in liquid assets ,land, livestock and physical capital. Farmers who don't have cash
available to pay the estate tax are often forced to sell their farms to pay the government.
Last year, the federal government provided a significant amount of money in emergency disaster
assistance to farmers. Perhaps this would not have been necessary if farmers could access, in the first
instance, well-designed risk management tools.
This year, the Senate will examine the USDA's crop insurance system. We need to look at whether the
current system provides adequate protection against risk and evaluate the development of new risk
management tools. For farmers to prosper, our nation must have economic, farm, and trade policies that
promote investment and growth in agricultural communities and agricultural states like Illinois. A healthy
agricultural economy has ripple effects through many industries and is critical for the economic prosperity
of both Illinois and America. As your new Senator, I look forward to addressing these issues in the
coming years.

14
Arizona Debate Institute 2008 Fellows
Econ DA /
Agriculture Key To Food Security

AGRICULTURE IS KEY TO FOOD SECURITY


Riemenschneider, 2003
CHARLES H. RIEMENSCHNEIDER, DIRECTOR, LIAISON OFFICE FOR NORTH AMERICA
Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, The Role of Agriculture in the Global
Economy, http://www.fao.org/world/lowa/news.pdf
First, at the most basic level, agriculture’s essential role is to provide adequate
output to assure global food security. Without adequate food, people cannot work and
earn, they cannot learn, and they are more susceptible to disease. Overall, their
economic prospects are dim. With a majority of the world’s population living in rural
areas in developing countries, agriculture remains a key economic activity to provide
people with the capacity to feed themselves by producing their own food or as a
source of employment and income to access food supplies. This essential link between
food security and economic development through agricultural productivity is why
food security is the number one priority of all of the work of FAO.
Second, agricultural trade also provides a further link between agricultural
production and the global economy. How developing countries - particularly the net
food importing countries - and their food insecure and vulnerable people - benefit
from the new framework of agricultural trade is a major concern of FAO. As the
Doha Development Round moves forward, many developing countries must
overcome a number of challenges to take advantage of trade opportunities created by
these trade reforms

15
Arizona Debate Institute 2008 Fellows
Econ DA /
Biofuels Key To The Economy

Biofuels key to the economy


US DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY, 2000
JUNE 2000, BIOFUELS FOR SUSTAINABLE TRANSPORTATION, WWW.NREL.GOV/DOCS/FY00OSTI/25876.PDF
Oil imports account for almost half the U.S. trade deficit, which has an enor-
mous impact on our economy and the creation of new jobs. A high trade
imbalance from dependence on foreign oil also leaves our economy vulner-
able to price hikes from supply disruptions. Developing a stronger market
for domestically produced biofuels in the United States will help alleviate the
negative implications of our trade deficit and contribute to positive economic
trends in the U.S. transportation sector.
Currently, the ethanol industry is responsible for approximately 200,000
jobs. Between 1996 and 2000, the ethanol industry added approximately
$51 billion to the U.S. economy. Ethanol production creates domestic jobs in
plant construction, operation, maintenance, and support in the surrounding
communities. This can have a profound impact on rural America, where a
decline in employment has placed increasing burdens on our cities, infra-
structure, and tax base

16
Arizona Debate Institute 2008 Fellows
Econ DA /
Biofuels Key To The Economy

Biofuels add billions to the economy


GreenBiz 2006
12-29-06, Study Shows Biodiesel Will Add $24 Billion to U.S. Economy,
http://www.greenbiz.com/news/2006/12/29/study-shows-biodiesel-will-add-24-billion-us-economy
America's biodiesel industry will add $24 billion to the U.S. economy between 2005 and 2015, according
to a study by the National Biodiesel Board. The figure foresees biodiesel growth reaching 650 million
gallons of annual production by 2015.
The economic analysis, conducted by John M. Urbanchuk of LECG and funded by the soybean checkoff
through the United Soybean Board, also found that biodiesel production will create a projected 39,102
new jobs in all sectors of the economy.
Additional tax revenues from biodiesel production will more than pay for the federal tax incentives
provided to the industry, concluded Urbanchuk. It will keep $13.6 billion in America that would otherwise
be spent on foreign oil. This total impact of biodiesel on the economy includes the temporary impacts of
construction, the permanent impacts of annual production and the direct value of biodiesel and co-
products (glycerin).
"Because these plants buy local goods and local services, the second and third-round employment-
generating impacts are really significant," Urbanchuk said. “You’re looking at a fairly substantial
employment-generating impact. Most of these jobs are going to be located in rural communities, and you
can’t overstate the impact of the biofuels’ industry on these rural economies.”
The study finds that if 498 of the 650 million gallons of estimated biodiesel demand in 2015 is produced
from soybean oil, farmer-level soybean prices will increase nearly 10 percent. Using the U.S. Department
of Agriculture’s 2006 Long-Term Baseline forecast for soybean prices as a starting point, soybean farmers
can expect increased biodiesel demand to increase average soybean prices $0.58 per bushel by 2015.
American Ag’s Lankenau says his plant’s expansion will be worthwhile investment for his business, and
for his community.
“I have to believe that 80 percent of dollars we’ve spent stay within 150 miles of here,” he said, adding
that of all the businesses he’s run, this is the most fulfilling. “I drive my diesel pickup through our rural
area where I see soybeans growing, and it makes me feel good about what I do.”There are 88 plants in the
nation producing an estimated 200 - 250 million gallons of biodiesel in 2006. That’s triple last year’s
production of 75 million gallons.

17
Arizona Debate Institute 2008 Fellows
Econ DA /
Subsidies Bad – Trade
ELIMINATING AG SUBSIDIES IS KEY TO TRADE AND FOOD SECURITY

Raisbeck, 2003
David W. Raisbeck, Vice Chairman, Cargill, Incorporated, The Role of Agriculture in the Global
Economy, May 18, 2003, http://www.cargill.com/news/media/030518raisbeck.htm
This helps explain why agriculture is the linchpin of the Doha Round. Doha can shape for a generation the
progress we make in merging agriculture into the rest of the global economy. And that progress will
determine to a large extent how far we get in ending hunger and reducing poverty while protecting the
environment.
For many of the world’s people, agriculture remains a subsistence activity. Ninety percent of the food
produced in the world is consumed within the country producing it, and most of that usage lies outside of
the commercial system. A company like Cargill only begins to touch the food system as commercial
production emerges and agricultural products flow to urban centers and into international markets. But as
commercial food trade emerges, new opportunities arise to eliminate hunger and enhance food security.
The first opportunity is to lower food costs. Access to low-cost imports helps keep food costs down,
especially for the poor who often spend 70 percent or more of their personal income to eat.
Second, food trade creates choice. Trade offers variety; it also provides access to foods year round that
often can be grown locally only on a seasonal basis. And, it provides efficient local farmers new
marketing opportunities. The result is higher living standards for those able to participate.
Finally, food trade provides more reliable access to supplies at lower cost. Crops often fluctuate 25
percent from one year to the next within a growing region. Global production, however, typically
fluctuates less than three percent annually, as good crops in some places offset poor crops elsewhere.
Moreover, storing food typically costs 20 percent or more of its value annually, even ignoring waste,
pests, quality losses and the like. Most foods can be shipped halfway around the world for 10 percent of
their value, or half the cost of storage.
In other words, food trade lowers costs, widens choices and provides more reliable access to supplies.
Each is important in eliminating hunger. But, food trade cannot play this role effectively in the face of
large market access barriers. The major problem limiting agriculture’s role in the global economy is that
agricultural trade barriers on average are ten times higher than industrial trade barriers, and many
agricultural barriers are prohibitively restrictive. Unless these barriers are brought down dramatically on
all agricultural products in all countries, the global food system needed to end hunger will not develop
adequately. We will lose an important opportunity to reduce food insecurity, perhaps for a generation.

18
Arizona Debate Institute 2008 Fellows
Econ DA /
Subsidies Bad – Developing Economies

LIBERALIZING US ECONOMIC POLICY IS KEY TO DEVELOPING ECONOMIES


Raisbeck, 2003
David W. Raisbeck, Vice Chairman, Cargill, Incorporated, The Role of Agriculture in the Global Economy, May 18, 2003,
http://www.cargill.com/news/media/030518raisbeck.htm
This helps explain why agriculture is the linchpin of the Doha Round. Doha can shape for a generation the
progress we make in merging agriculture into the rest of the global economy. And that progress will
determine to a large extent how far we get in ending hunger and reducing poverty while protecting the
environment.
For many of the world’s people, agriculture remains a subsistence activity. Ninety percent of the food
produced in the world is consumed within the country producing it, and most of that usage lies outside of
the commercial system. A company like Cargill only begins to touch the food system as commercial
production emerges and agricultural products flow to urban centers and into international markets. But as
commercial food trade emerges, new opportunities arise to eliminate hunger and enhance food security.
The first opportunity is to lower food costs. Access to low-cost imports helps keep food costs down,
especially for the poor who often spend 70 percent or more of their personal income to eat.
Second, food trade creates choice. Trade offers variety; it also provides access to foods year round that
often can be grown locally only on a seasonal basis. And, it provides efficient local farmers new
marketing opportunities. The result is higher living standards for those able to participate.
Finally, food trade provides more reliable access to supplies at lower cost. Crops often fluctuate 25
percent from one year to the next within a growing region. Global production, however, typically
fluctuates less than three percent annually, as good crops in some places offset poor crops elsewhere.
Moreover, storing food typically costs 20 percent or more of its value annually, even ignoring waste,
pests, quality losses and the like. Most foods can be shipped halfway around the world for 10 percent of
their value, or half the cost of storage.
In other words, food trade lowers costs, widens choices and provides more reliable access to supplies.
Each is important in eliminating hunger. But, food trade cannot play this role effectively in the face of
large market access barriers. The major problem limiting agriculture’s role in the global economy is that
agricultural trade barriers on average are ten times higher than industrial trade barriers, and many
agricultural barriers are prohibitively restrictive. Unless these barriers are brought down dramatically on
all agricultural products in all countries, the global food system needed to end hunger will not develop
adequately. We will lose an important opportunity to reduce food insecurity, perhaps for a generation.

19
Arizona Debate Institute 2008 Fellows
Econ DA /
Subsidies Bad – Environment

Eliminating subsidies is a pre requisite to environmentally sustainable farming practices


Raisbeck, 2003
David W. Raisbeck, Vice Chairman, Cargill, Incorporated, The Role of Agriculture in the Global
Economy, May 18, 2003, http://www.cargill.com/news/media/030518raisbeck.htm
The third area in which agricultural liberalization can help is in protecting fragile environmental
resources. The pressures of hunger and poverty often result in agricultural practices in low-income
countries that harm the environment in two ways: by exhausting the soil’s productivity rather than
replenishing it; and by forcing agriculture to expand to new lands rather than to use the most highly
productive lands better.
These pressures will only intensify over time. Food demand will continue to rise as global population
increases. Most of that population growth will be concentrated in developing countries. Higher per capita
incomes and accelerating urbanization in the developing world will only further intensify agriculture’s use
of scarce land and water resources. Unless productivity per acre, per dollar of investment and per hour of
work rises, agriculture will continue to expand into more virgin areas, strain limited water resources and
exhaust overworked soils.
This again is an area where agribusiness can help, if conditions permit the growth of the commercial
sector of agriculture. But, many poor countries currently pursue policies that discourage farmers from
increasing their productivity. Examples include: overvalued exchange rates, which limit exports; under
investment in rural infrastructure, which raises marketing costs; and uncertain land title and commercial
dispute settlement systems, which deter risk taking. It is these policies that could be left unreformed if
“special and differential treatment” for developing countries heads down the wrong path.
Feeding a growing and more prosperous global population in a more environmentally sustainable way can
only be achieved by adopting productivity- and efficiency-enhancing technologies. And adopting better
technologies is directly linked to the opening of trading opportunities that can generate cash for
reinvestment and market opportunities for expanded output.
So, from a commercial perspective, the world’s hopes for eliminating hunger, reducing poverty and
protecting fragile environments ride in important ways on the success of the Doha Agenda. Is the world
ready to create an open food system obeying the same kinds of rules that govern a more open industrial
economy?
Progress will require commitments of several kinds. First, developed countries must be prepared to grant
greater access to their own markets to all countries, not just a select few. Developed countries also must
find less trade-distorting ways to support rural incomes, and they must end the practice of subsidizing
their exports. But developing countries need to embrace a similar vision of openness; nearly half of
current global food trade, and virtually all of its growth potential, is among developing countries
themselves.

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