It's not that we didn't know this was going to happen, but now we can start to piece together just how much of Trump's bailout for farmers has been distributed to farms that probably don't need help and how little has been distributed to farms that are on the brink.
The largest and richest farms in the country have received over half of the total value of Trump's bailout according to government data analyzed by the Environmental Working Group (EWG).
More than half of the Trump administration’s trade-war aid for farmers went to just one-tenth of the recipients in the program, according to an analysis of payments by an environmental organization.
Eighty-two farming operations received more than $500,000 each in payments through April under the U.S. Agriculture Department’s Market Facilitation Program, according to the Environmental Working Group, which analyzed payment records it obtained through the Freedom of Information Act covering $8.4 billion in payments. [...]
The environmental organization, which published a searchable database of trade aid recipients on its website Tuesday, said the top 1% of farmers were paid an average $188,000 while the bottom 80% averaged less than $5,000.
More from the EWG:
The top one-tenth of recipients received 54 percent of all MFP payments. Eighty-two farmers have so far received more than $500,000 in MFP payments. One farm, DeLine Farm Partnership, of Charleston, Mo., has so far received $2.8 million in MFP payments. The top 1 percent of MFP recipients received, on average, $183,331. The bottom 80 percent received, on average, less than $5,000. Thousands of residents of the nation’s largest cities received MFP payments. MFP payments continue to leave out minority farmers.
It makes some sense that larger farms would have more to lose and would qualify for more aid, however the largest and richest farms also have the legal and logistical resources necessary to collect bailout payments many times over for one single farm that's been divided into separate legal entities.
The Environmental Working Group posits that Trump's second bailout for farmers will be even more stratified because it will be based strictly on number of acres planted.
My most cynical interpretation of this is that Team Trump wants to keep the farm lobby and large corporate agribusiness in his back pocket while counting on rural white farmers voting for him anyway even if his regime has created a trainwreck on their property.
I'm not saying it won't work.