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GLENN: You know, one of the things most forgotten about the FDR era was the huge problem that they had with destroying crops and killing farm animals but, you know, it wasn't the work of some eco terrorist group at the time. It was FDR himself that did it. Sure, it was the Great Depression, millions were hungry, but the evil market that Tim Geithner talks about today, "The market can't solve this problem. Only government can." They thought the same thing about the food and the hunger thing back, you know, under FDR. The evil market was keeping food prices too low for farmers to make enough money for a profit. So FDR decided to pay farmers to destroy ten million acres of crops and kill six million farm animals. But come on. That can't happen again, right?
Well, not exactly... yet. Rex Woollen grows corn and soybeans. In 2007, the Wilcox, Nebraska farmer started cultivating a new commodity: Carbon. By not tilling 800 acres, Woollen by some estimates keeps 470 tons of carbon per year in the ground and out of the atmosphere and because of that, Woollen gets carbon credits that he can then sell to the Chicago Climate Exchange. Do you see what's happening here? By not growing crops, he saves carbon and he gets paid for it. Woollen gets $3,000 a year, while it's not much to Woollen, it hints at a bigger potential profit as congress considers mandatory nationwide greenhouse gas limits. For now he's only getting paid a little for not growing crops, but should that go up once the government gets involved, he's thinking there could be a lot of money here. I'm not sure today if I walk through a wormhole into another dimension but I have a feeling I have. Some state farm lawmakers want to let farmers create separate sources of carbon allowances. Farmers who plant trees would earn offsets to sell alongside government permits on carbon markets. So not only can you earn cash as a farmer by not farming, you can also get more if you plant things that aren't crops. And people say that common sense is dead. You know that Barack Obama wants a cap and trade bill and you know that farm states would be key votes to getting it passed so you can expect a lot more of this kind of nonsense on the horizon. But what about the Chicago Climate Exchange itself?
Well, guess who was on the board of the charity that gave over a million dollars in crucial funds to the Chicago Climate Exchange during its infancy? Yeah, Barack Obama. In fact, even some environmentalists are admitting they worry a little bit about cap and trade, noticing what it actually is, a brand new giant derivatives market. But what could possibly happen with a derivatives market going bad? I mean, that's not like that could derail our entire economy or anything, right?