More stinging criticism of the agricultural industry harms from the Trump tariffs and the proposed aid package to offset some of those harms since my post about the dairy industry yesterday — this article in the Minneapolis Star-Tribune is full of pointed arguments against them: Bill Gordon, a soybean farmer near Worthington, Minn., said his crop … More “Any aid package, no matter what dollar amount, is a Band-Aid on an arterial bleed.”
Farming has always been an uncertain business. Weather and the price-taking nature of being small relative to large commodity markets lead to feast or famine. The Trump Trade War and today’s palliative farm subsidies to farmers harmed by Trump’s tariffs combine with pre-existing subsidies to amplify that underlying boom and bust cycle, imposing high costs on … More Dairy farming, tariffs, and Trump’s “12 billion dollar crutches”
Michael Giberson A few weeks back Congressman Ed Markey asked the U.S. Department of Energy whether exports of natural gas might not be in the public interest (see prior note here, related note) as exports would tend to push U.S. gas prices higher. The USDOE’s response apparently didn’t mitigate Markey’s concern; today the Congressman introduced … More Congressman Markey still worries about U.S. natural gas exports
Michael Giberson Yesterday the Energy Information Administration released the results of its analysis of possible price effects from increased natural gas exports, and the Wall Street Journal finds the drama (“Gas Prices Could Rise With Exports”): Increased exports of U.S. natural gas could drive up domestic gas prices as much as 54% in 2018, federal officials … More WSJ says EIA says natural gas prices could jump 54 percent with exports
Michael Giberson At Robert Rapier’s R-Squared Energy Blog he offers his list of Top 10 Energy Stories of 2011. One of the stories: the U.S. was a net exporter of finished petroleum products such as diesel and gasoline for the first time since 1949. In a post today he notes that some people have been troubled by the … More Robert Rapier on the U.S. exports of gasoline – isn’t this a good thing?
Michael Giberson Congressman Ed Markey recently sent a letter to Energy Secretary Steven Chu inquiring into the possibility that natural gas exports may be harmful to the public interest (see press release, copy of letter). Markey’s concern is that exports will tend to push U.S. gas prices (currently around $3 or $4 per mmbtu) to … More Congressman Markey worries about U.S. natural gas exports
Lynne Kiesling In the Chicago Tribune, economist Allen Sanderson riffs on the same faulty “dependence” logic that I mentioned briefly last week: I speak, of course, of our complete dependence on coffee that we are importing mainly from Brazil and Colombia. It’s time to wean ourselves from this harmful addiction. My “Coffee Independence” proposal is … More More on the trade dependence meme
Lynne Kiesling I am listening to an NPR story right now on the conflicts over the construction of the new pipeline to bring Canadian heavy crude oil from the tar sands to the US. Steve Inskeep introduced the story by observing that as Canadian tar sands production increases, US consumers will “become more dependent on … More Economics error: trade makes people “dependent”