Thursday, August 04, 2005

Trouble for farm subsidies

At the Elite East Coast University where I got my undergrad degree, I knew a lot of articulate and thoughtful people from across the political spectrum. I found that farm subsidies was one of the few issues we could get pretty broad agreement on. At this point, even liberals tend to accept the broad case for the free market, and few of them have any sentimental notions about the need to preserve and protect The American Farmer, or whatever.

And now (as Jane Galt's Contributor A notes with some shock), celebrities are on board! That's right, there is a celebrity campaign against farm subsidies. Obviously, this won't make farm subsidies disappear tomorrow, and it might make no difference whatsoever. But it might just be a sign that the liberal establishment is ready to take this on as a cause, which might just produce some results.

Certainly, if we hear more celebrities speaking out like this, the right wing "celebrities should stay out of politics" chorus will subside. Whether or not one thinks that celebrities should keep out of the political arena is usually determined primarily by whether one agrees with those celebrities. If you disagree with them, you think to yourself: "They're wrong, and they're unqualified!" And if you agree with them, you think, "They might not obviously be qualified, but why should it matter? They're making sense, right?" It's hard to avoid that sort of inconsistency.

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