McConnell Is Wrong, The Trade War Is Not Why Agriculture Is Failing

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While I am not a supporter of protectionism by any means, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell dropped the ball when it came to expressing issues with it. Saying it has been “very tough,” on the agriculture industry from his home state of Kentucky in an interview with CNBC.

However, this does not mean McConnell is turning against it. Saying that he does “admire what [Trump] is trying to do,” even if he feels it could be done much better.

I should start off by noting that I did, in fact, call it. Trade wars are not “quick and easy to win,” if anything, they’re quite the opposite. Protectionism is not a good economic model and only brings harm to the vast majority of the population. This is best seen by just understanding what tariffs are, a tax on the average citizen to punish another country.

However, this does not mean I agree with the statement McConnell made. Bringing back America’s agricultural industry still remains a fools errant in the vast majority of cases.

To the credit of Mitch, he does seem to be willing to use the few real solutions that could exist to bring back farming. For instance, he was one of the lead sponsors for a bill to help legalize hemp, something progressives have been calling for for decades.

This however does not improve the neo-Luddite thinking the Senate Majority Leader is engaging in. The truth is the farming industry has been on the verge of collapsing for a long time, hence why government gives money to farms in the first place.

Ever since The Industrial Revolution, the amount of people living and working on farms has decreased greatly. Before The Industrial Revolution, over 90% of citizens worked on farms. After the Revolution was over, that amount was cut in more than half.

Various practices (automation for instance — including things that have become part of farming like tractors) have made it so less people have to work on farms.

This is a similar mistake many Democrats (such as Presidential Candidates Andrew Yang, Bernie Sanders, and Elizabeth Warren) make in regards to factory work. Automation is part of the new wave of economic growth, after all, people have to make the machines that are being used to automate factories. It also leads to lower prices which makes the average American much better off.

Neither party seems to want the United States to be a first world country.

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