THE CONGRESS: Joseph & Ezra

And Joseph said unto Pharaoh . . . look out a man discreet and wise . . . and let him appoint officers over the land, and take up the fifth part of the land of Egypt in the seven plenteous years. And let them gather all the food of those good years that come, and lay up corn under the hand of Pharaoh, and let them keep food in the cities. And that food shall be for store to the land against the seven years of famine.

—Genesis 41: 25-36

Egypt's agricultural adjustment act of about 1800 B.C., outlined in...