A majority of Americans believe the government is out of control. Over the past several weeks Americans have been bombarded with news accounts of colossal, unprecedented government surveillance – the National Security Agency (NSA), the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), and the Department of Justice (DOJ) are all collecting data on American citizens. Recent polls show little support for expanding government surveillance, and more than three-quarters of voters want Congress to continue investigating the IRS and DOJ scandals. We’re tired of being watched by a surveillance leviathan monitoring our speech, phone calls, and associations.
It’s in the context of massive surveillance and the public’s increasing mistrust for government that the House of Representatives begins debate on a new five-year farm bill. You would think that it’s a ridiculous stretch of the imagination to put the farm bill in the milieu of “big brother is watching you.” Unfortunately, you would be wrong.