Les Arpents Verts: Salon d’Agriculture Concludes in France

I didn’t want to let it go by without comment. It’s received very, very little comment in the American Blogosphere but last week the Salon d’Agriculture, a farming exhibition analogous to a nation-wide state or county fair took place outside Paris at the Porte de Versailles. The Salon is a ten day long celebration of the French countryside, the diversity of French agricultural products, and (most important to me) the political influence of French farmers. The official site of the Salon d’Agriculture is here. For a loving description of the fair see here.

There are fewer French farmers today than ever before but they wield enormous political influence. The upper house of the French legislature, their Senate, provides representation to rural communities disproportionate to their population and, consequently, political power. This is not lost on the French politicians seeking France’s presidency and they visit the Salon with much fanfare to bolster their credentials as supporters of French agriculture.

Read more at The Glittering Eye

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Dave Schuler
About Dave Schuler
Over the years Dave Schuler has worked as a martial arts instructor, a handyman, a musician, a cook, and a translator. He's owned his own company for the last thirty years and has a post-graduate degree in his field. He comes from a family of politicians, teachers, and vaudeville entertainers. All-in-all a pretty good preparation for blogging. He has contributed to OTB since November 2006 but mostly writes at his own blog, The Glittering Eye, which he started in March 2004.

Comments

  1. DC Loser says:

    This harkens back to the days when US pols would make mandatory stops at state fairs or 4H conventions. Nothing new here.

  2. Triumph says:

    Vive José Bové—prochain président de la république!

  3. Jim Henley says:

    Yeah, thank God we don’t have anything like that in this country. Imagine if our national politicians had to court vestigial agricultural constituencies to be elected and we had a legislative house in which rural regions had disproportionate representation. We’d be paying people not to grow crops, paying other people to turn corn into fuel, propping up prices of food on one end and then having to subsidize groceries for the poor on the other and, hell, even keeping other nations poor by erecting cruel trade barriers.

    Stupid Frenchies!

  4. Dave Schuler says:

    Jim, I certainly didn’t intend to imply criticism of the French in this post. My intent was more to report on something I thought was receiving insufficient attention.

    My view on agricultural subsidies is that I favor the immediate elimination of U. S. farm subsidies. Unilaterally. I’ve believed that for 40 years.

    As far as European agricultural policy is concerned since the very inception of the CAP system I’ve believed it was operating on borrowed time. Countries like Ukraine and Romania with enormous agricultural potential (until WWI Ukraine produced an enormous proportion of Europe’s wheat) just make the system unrealistic. And, as is suggested in some of the articles to which I linked in the post, some French farmers—the primary beneficiaries of the system—agree with me.

  5. Jim Henley says:

    Dave, I get you. I was just having a bitter shock of recognition is all . . .