As transfers of wealth go - the CAP is a real 'doozy' in transferring wealth to those who already have a lot and yet want even more

Any sector that has an overburdening reliance on handouts of public money cannot be good for the economy or the nation and unfortunately this is what todays farming seems to have become

Broadly the origins of the present day CAP came into being as an arrangement between France and Germany. On the one hand Germany's industry wanted access to French markets, whereas on the other hand France (ever the opportunist) wanted someone to bankroll their farmers. Furthermore, France only became a net contributor in 2005 having had a 'free ride' for many years

Nevertheless the CAP was born out of protectionism and is undoubtedly an obstacle to free trade. Although, in the eyes of the recipients of this largess, that clearly does not seem to matter and neither do all the problems associated with protectionism and emerging countries / markets - after all "i'm all right jack"

Don't forget that currently 40% of the EU budget is allocated to the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP)

Many years ago, we saw France and other members applying these same tactics when the UK applied to join the EU (1970's) in respect of the Common Fisheries Policy (CFP) - the rules were changed barely 24 hours before the UK signed-up

UK EEC Referendum - Will UK Get Their Fishing Grounds Back From EEC Original Illegal Theft

Yet France always manage to come out on top, despite having a dysfunctional 'basket case' economy and still having an over-inflated say in how the EU operates

However, in respect of UK farmers - what other industry

  • Can avoid the planning rules
  • Is pretty much exempt from inheritance tax (business)
  • Cannot trade profitably
  • Receives handsome subsidies for failure

Any other business would have gone bust long ago and all that theses subsidies have done is ensure that UK farmers stagnate because many of them are far too comfortable, with little innovation and any diversification dictated by how much they get from other/more subsidies

Who pays for subsidising farmers income - every taxpayer, including small businesses who are them selves struggling - but never mind all that provided that farmers have their income topped up by those less well off than themselves

and all the time these farmers are sitting on considerable assets and ever rising land prices - whilst expecting the rest of the community to suffer in order to maintain their subsidies

There is no claw-back from inherited estates for the subsidies farmers have received and this CAP abuse crosses the entire social strata from the very wealthy to the marginal farmers with little or no distinction - just hold out you hand and collect the annual subsidy - rather like Monopoly 'pass go' collect £200

It has been said that

 '.. The abolition of subsidies would cut taxes, cut food prices, stop distorting world trade and make European farm exports more competitive ..'

However, the farming lobby throughout the EU is far too powerful to let that happen

Adding insult to injury was an attempt in the EU courts, by 3 German farmers to stop publication about individuals receiving these huge subsidies. Although subsequently overturned, this does indicate a mindset in some farmers that they are trying to hide what they ultimately know is wrong and unfair

'.. The EU's top court says the EU must stop publishing data about individual farmers who receive subsidies under the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) ..'

EU Diktat - Stop publication about individuals receiving these huge CAP subsidies

Which rather epitomises the whole reasoning behind the EU

 

References

Beneficiaries of CAP payments (shared management)

 

Tags: | Categories: Farming