Mostly liberal nonprofits and experts will gather today at the White House in an effort to end hunger – they say – and improve nutrition and physical activity.
Daren Bakst, a senior research fellow for environmental policy and regulation at The Heritage Foundation who analyzes and writes about regulation, environmental policy, and food and agricultural policy, expects the administration will throw a bunch of money at social programs, most of which will go to kids and others who do not really need it.
"They're trying to give welfare to everybody," he submits, foreseeing "universal preschool meals" as part of their solution.
The summit, he says, actually has nothing to do with hunger.
"One thing they do expect is to try to impose environmental issues into food concerns," Bakst reports. "They want to try to worry less about safe and affordable foods and more about making sure that we produce food the right way."
But he argues that if the government wants to really address hunger, then it will simply get out of the way.
"Civil society can help to address these issues," Bakst suggests. "Instead of trying to create policies that drive up food prices, let's figure out ways that actually remove obstacles to make food affordable for everybody."
This week's hunger summit is the White House's first since 1969. That conference, under President Richard Nixon, is said to have been a pivotal moment that influenced the U.S. food policy agenda for 50 years. It led to a greatly expanded food stamps program.