Commodities: The Last Boll

The U.S. Government's cotton policy is a crazy quilt that would put even Rumpelstiltskin in stitches—and it costs the U.S. taxpayer $500 million a year. Congress has piled subsidy on top of subsidy, seems to think up a new price prop every year.

First the Government fixed the price of domestic cotton at 32½¢ a lb., which is 8½¢ above the present world market price. Then it has been paying an 8½¢ subsidy to exporters so that they can sell U.S. cotton competitively at the world price. But U.S. textile manufacturers have been complaining that foreign textile makers can thus...

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