A Government Subsidy which Undermined Self-Reliance

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AGovernment Subsidy which Undermined Self-Reliance

` Everygovernment works tirelessly to see its governance attain the setobjectives for its citizens. Just like any other government in theworld, the US government is not left behind. For the past hundredyears or so, the government has made various decisions in the courseof its noble duty. Such major decisions include the policies thathave been put in place to achieve the specific objectives that theyare meant for (Alcon,et al. 352).Such policies are passed as bills by parliament, passed as by laws oreven signed as international treaties. The treaties signed may eitheraim at impacting the local country only or even benefit theinternational community.

Thespecific policy

Forthe sake of this discussion, the policy to take into consideration isthat of government agriculture subsidy policy that has led to theundermining of the self-reliance goal. The US government has from thepast, especially from the 1970s undertaken upon it to provideagricultural subsidies to its farmers. This policy has been put inplace as a procedure to lower down the cost of food production amongthe US farmers (Alkon,et al. 349).Mostly, the sector that is aimed at benefiting from such a policy isthe commercial farming. The subsidies provided by the US governmenthave seen the export capacity of the cereals and grains to othercountries. This means that the production capacity of the UnitedStates of America has grown to a very high point. The governmentcontinues to engage in various negotiations with its trade partnersto achieve reduced cost of exporting the production to thosecountries.

Asthe cost of production in the US is very low, the supply in othertrade partners is quite high, and the cost of the grains is low. Thismakes the locals in such countries such as the underdevelopedcountries to consider the imports rather than their production. Theimports of such food from the US have left such countries to rely onthe food imported from the US rather than producing their own (Alkon,et al. 353).This is against the rule of development which dictates that eachcountry ought to grow to be self-sustaining in terms of foodproduction. By the provision of cheap grains and cereals from the US,locals of a poor country prefer what is cheap rather than what istheirs. This poses a big danger to such a country in case the supplyfrom the US fluctuates.

Ontop of the deteriorated food reliance, the subsidy policy posesvarious threats to such countries. The countries that are importingthe food products end up having less bargaining powers compared tothe exporting country. Exploitation is hence likely to occur as theless developed countries will have to take in the food aid, relief orthe cheap food without many conditions. The development rate of suchcountries is also reduced in that the reliance on the US is so high.

Also,the international community faces a food crisis threat in future. Thecontinuous reliance on imported food by many countries creates somedoubts on the capacity of US to do it continuously and in allweathers. In case the production falls, the international communitywould experience would experience food shortage leading to starvation(Alkon,et al. 350).


Fromthe above discussion, the agricultural subsidy is seen to havevarious advantages as well as demerits. However, the risk of loweringthe level of self-reliance neutralizes all the benefits. This meansthat agricultural subsidy ought to be limited to the necessity levelto contain the international lack of self-reliance.


Alkon,Alison Hope, and Teresa Marie Mares. &quotFood sovereignty in USfood movements: radical visions and neoliberal constraints.&quotAgricultureand Human Values29.3 (2012): 347-359.

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