Guess what?  It is business as usual for the U.S. Congress.  Hidden in the $124,000,000,000 Iraq War Spending Bill is Sec. 3103, submitted by Congressman Sam Farr (D-CA), entitled – Spinach – is a $25,000,000 earmark to the same people who poisoned over 200 and killed 4 people in last year’s Spinach E. coli outbreak (and there have been other spinach E. coli outbreaks in the past).  One may ask what a spinach subsidy is doing in a war bill – perhaps a biological weapon?  Here is the bill’s language:

There is hereby appropriated to the Secretary of Agriculture $25,000,000, to remain available until expended, to make payments to growers and first handlers, as defined by the Secretary, of fresh spinach that were unable to market spinach crops as a result of the Food and Drug Administration Public Health Advisory issued on September 14, 2006. The payment made to a grower or first handler under this section shall not exceed 75 percent of the value of the unmarketed spinach crops.

Congressman Farr, you make me sick.  How can you give s subsidy to an industry when the families of people who died or children who will need kidney transplants have yet to receive a settlement?  You should be ashamed.

My challenge to the Spinach industry – refuse the money.  Ask that the money be used in university research to prevent the next outbreak or to subsidize the FDA or California Department of Health to afford to actually monitor your practices.

By the way – I have been a life-long Democrat and a fundraiser for Democratic politicians.