The Present State of Disarray

  • D. Gale Johnson
Part of the World Economic Issues book series (WEI)


In the first chapter several indications of the disarray in world agriculture were briefly noted—the large costs of the present farm policies of the industrial countries, the enormous differences in prices received by farmers in the industrial countries, and the more rapid growth of output than of consumption, and the consequent disruptive effects upon trade in farm products. More fundamentally the disarray is evidenced by the ineffectiveness of the farm and trade policies to accomplish their avowed purposes, namely that of significantly improving the income position of farm families. Instead, as will be argued at length later, these policies are primarily responsible for too many resources being engaged in agriculture, encouraging too large a farm output and impeding changes that are inevitable and cannot be significantly mitigated by the policies being followed. In most cases, the policies being followed are an exercise in futility, albeit a very expensive exercise. And as noted earlier, the stubbornness of policy-makers in the industrial countries with respect to agricultural trade policies may well destroy some significant part of the gains in trade liberalization that has been achieved over the past three decades.


Industrial Country Producer Price Farm Product Export Price Income Transfer 
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Notes and References

  1. 4.
    William F. Roenigk, Agriculture in the European Community and the United States: 1958–68 (Washington: USDA, 1971), p. 5.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© D. Gale Johnson 1973

Authors and Affiliations

  • D. Gale Johnson
    • 1
  1. 1.University of ChicagoUSA

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