John Edwards knows the way to this Ethicurean’s heart

…is through my stomach.

Seriously, as obsessed as we are with food politics, we do care about other kinds as well. Yes, the Farm Bill was a disaster, but so was the Energy Bill. And let's not even talk about Iraq or healthcare and education in this country. We're not endorsing anyone based on their food & ag platform — and we wouldn't vote for or against a candidate based on that alone. (But boy does Ms. Clinton's choice of campaign managers chafe my hide.)

No, we much prefer to choose our candidates based on whether their hairstyle and gender/race appeals to us, like normal Americans. But I digress.

When one sees an article like this one in Meat & Poultry, the business journal for meat and poultry processors (what? You don't read it?), it really kinda grabs your attention. M&P asked the press contacts of the various presidential candidates where they stood on issues affecting protein producers. Democratic candidate John Edwards gave them those answers, plus a lot more they didn't ask for.

His spokespeople apparently said that, if elected, Edwards would:

  • Pass a national ban on packer ownership
  • Pass a national moratorium on construction & expansion of hog-farm lagoons
  • Strictly enforce laws against anticompetitive mergers and unfair pricing
  • Limit farm subsidies to $250,000 per person; close loopholes in payment limits
  • Expand conservation programs that help farmers preserve the land
  • Implement country-of-origin labeling (COOL) for food
  • Strengthen the FDA and make one agency responsible for the security and safety of U.S. food — and able to order recalls
  • Require countries exporting food to the U.S. to have safety systems certified by the FDA as equivalent to the U.S. system

That's basically like the oil industry asking a candidate where he stands on coal, ethanol, and nuclear energy, and the answer coming back proudly, "I prefer solar, conservation, and biking."

4 Responsesto “John Edwards knows the way to this Ethicurean’s heart”

  1. azurite says:

    Guess Edwards' positions on ag are just one more reason why USA Today seems to be pretending that he's not a viable candidate for the Dem nomination.

  2. Hmm... I may have to rethink Mr. Edwards. He has always felt so slimy to me but Hillary is very scary. Maybe there's an alternative in the choices we're likely to get.

  3. David In Seattle says:

    This is really important information. I encourage people to cross post it. With positions like this, John Edwards may just earn my vote after all.

  4. Emily H. says:

    It's so awesome to hear a candidate speak with conviction about something so controversial (controversial as far as the pork industry is concerned). It's not ultra-surprising to hear, though, given Edwards's background: He was senator of N.C. when hurricane Floyd wreaked utter devastation on that state, much of which was largely a result of N.C.'s enormous, out-of-control hog-farming industry. So I'm guessing this subject hits home with him. I do wonder how he would respond to similar questioning regarding CAFOs and industrial meat production as a whole.