Think Freely Media presents Common Sense with Paul Jacob

America has a problem: obstinate politicians, the Obstinacy in Chief, especially.

Almost any policy high-lighted at some point in the last few years could serve as an illustration of this point, but let’s choose the once-popular “green” pro-ethanol policies.

George W. Bush pushed ethanol, and Barack Obama doubled-down on the subsidy, making it a centerpiece for his low carbon-footprint notion.

It has not worked.

What it has done is create what environmentalists are now calling “an ecological disaster.”


It created a land rush that swallowed vast tracts of land sporting alternate uses, including millions of acres of conservation land, including wetlands. And the huge amounts of insecticide and fertilizer used in the effort have poisoned wells and water supplies as well as rivers and the Gulf of Mexico.

All to plant more corn than the market demands.

But is it doing what the government wants, and Obama demanded — the whole reason for this goofy program after all?

“The government’s predictions of the benefits have proven so inaccurate,” write Dina Cappiello and Matt Apuzzo for the Associated Press, “that independent scientists question whether it will ever achieve its central environmental goal: reducing greenhouse gases. That makes the hidden costs even more significant.”

Over-production, higher costs, externalized burdens — typical for a government subsidy. But what can we do about it?

In early 19th century Britain, Richard Cobden and John Bright started the Anti-Corn Law League, which successfully opposed the biggest protectionist program of the age. We could use another such vital force, this time to oppose the idiotic subsidies that raise food prices internationally as well as wreak havoc on land in the Mid-West.

This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.

By: Redactor


  1. P. Long says:

    Judging by the EPA’s over reach on water control and Obama’s executive order regarding carbon levels and ‘climate change’ preparedness dated Nov. 1, we’re out of luck hoping for any common sense. Even without Obama, we still have all the bureaucrat elitists that aren’t elected. The courts aren’t going to do anything, we have no power to fire all of them, and our elected officials in D.C. don’t seem to have any power to correct things either. Does the term ‘out of luck’ mean anything to anybody out there?

  2. Jay says:

    With gasoline to contain 10% ethanol ( and powers want it raised-even though there is not enough corn nor refining capacity—well the refiners give big to the politicians–of both parties.

    The same is true of all agricultural subsidies.

    And flood insurance subsidies, and Obamacare subsidies, etc.

    All have a constituency that wants it to continue.

    ALWAYS, my subsidy is needed, cut the other guy’s.

  3. Edward Agazarm says:

    Just say NO to corn gas.

    The independent gas station a mile away from my place in Olympia sells CORN FREE gas. Gas with ZERO ethanol. It’s always busy.

    My old 2001 GM runs better and gets better mileage with corn free gas. No doubt.

  4. “reducing greenhouse gases” – the irony (if one can call it that seeing the disaster wrought) of it all that a simple systems analysis of all the factors involved could have shown up front that no way can currently available crops produce more energy than they consume. Not if one takes into account the complete supply chain and all the transportation, energy-hungry fertilizers and the low efficiency of it being turned into fuel or electricity (“bio”gas) is taken into consideration. That alone should have stopped it all. The situation in Europe is exactly the same, only that due to equally strong subsidies (!!!) for other agricultural produce and slightly stronger conservation laws the bio-pest has spread not as eagerly to e.g. wetlands etc.

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