Agriculture giants Bayer, Monsanto merging could ruin American farmers

By John W. Boyd, Jr. and Mike Weaver This article first appeared in The Hill. Earlier this year, we planted our crops — soybeans, corn, and wheat — and began feeding our spring chickens. Farmers like us have been doing this for generations. But next year, when we turn to our spring tasks again, the entire farming economy will have shifted under our feet as a result of a merger wave currently underway among the world’s agricultural giants. They Read More …

Putting Competition Policy at the Top of the Agenda for Rural America

By Lillian Salerno, former Deputy Undersecretary for Policy for Rural Development, USDA As one of the few rural entrepreneurs who served in the Obama Administration, I was so fortunate to get to spend much of my time with rural small businesses and local farmers implementing the programs Congress authorizes to assist in rural economic development. In this role for 5 years, I worked alongside USDA’s amazing State Directors and field staff implementing and supporting economic development in rural Read More …

Senate Judiciary Committee must carefully assess Delrahim in light of potential agribusiness mergers

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE May 9, 2017 WASHINGTON, DC – Tomorrow, the Senate Judiciary Committee will hold a confirmation hearing for Makan Delrahim, President Trump’s nominee for Assistant Attorney General of the Department of Justice’s Antitrust Division. The DOJ’s Antitrust Division reviews and makes decisions on corporate mergers, and as an Assistant Attorney General Delrahim will be the ultimate decider on the proposed merger of giant agrichemical companies Monsanto Company and Bayer AG. A coalition of 137 farmer, consumer and environmental Read More …

The New York Times: Leashes Come Off Wall Street, Gun Sellers, Polluters and More

The New York Times By ERIC LIPTON and BINYAMIN APPELBAUM WASHINGTON — Giants in telecommunications, like Verizon and AT&T, will not have to take “reasonable measures” to ensure that their customers’ Social Security numbers, web browsing history and other personal information are not stolen or accidentally released. Wall Street banks like Goldman Sachs and JPMorgan Chase will not be punished, at least for now, for not collecting extra money from customers to cover potential losses from certain kinds Read More …

OCM Still Focused on Competitive Markets

On August 11th, OCM will return to the Airport Embassy Suites in Kansas City for our annual convention. There, in October of 1998, OCM was founded and declared its mission to be reestablishing fair and competitive markets for agriculture. Fair and competitive markets are what OCM still strives for; not as an end in themselves but as a critical contributor to the survival of independent family agriculture, a tenable rural America and our national food security. In my Read More …

Senator Warren’s Speech on Monopoly

Yesterday, straight off her high-profile campaign appearance Monday with Hillary Clinton, Sen. Elizabeth Warren gave a keynote address about industry consolidation in the American economy at a conference at the Capitol put on by New America’s Open Markets program. Though the speech has so far gotten only a modicum of attention—the press being more interested in litigating Donald Trump’s Pocahontas taunts—it has the potential to change the course of the presidential contest. Her speech begins at minute 56:45 Read More …

Populism With a Brain : Ten old/new ideas to give power back to the people.

by Barry C. Lynn and Phillip Longman published in the Washington Monthly The National Review recently described Bernie Sanders and Donald Trump as “two populist peas in a pod.” This was not a compliment. Across the political spectrum, people stick the “populist” label on politicians they see as exploiting the worst resentments and envies of some tribe or another. The segregationist George Wallace, by this reckoning, was a populist. So, too, Jean-Marie Le Pen. Yet there is a Read More …

Ban On Meat Packer Ownership: Too Little, Too Late

By Mike Callicrate Iowa Senator Chuck Grassley, a longtime advocate for fair markets, is once again reintroducing a bill that would make it unlawful for meat packers to own livestock more than seven days prior to slaughter. Similar legislation has been introduced before, but the powerful packer lobby has always succeeded in killing it. Aside from whether the bill actually has a chance this time, there’s another question to consider. If Congress bans meat packers from owing livestock, Read More …