Two years ago, in an effort that went largely unnoticed by the mainstream press, the Obama administration launched a frontal assault on the giant meat and dairy processing companies that dominate rural America. In the most far-reaching attempt to reform Big Ag in a half-century, the administration’s top brass went after a system that allows de facto monopolies to bully farmers into contracts, force them into debt, pay them arbitrarily, and leave them powerless, penniless, and afraid to speak out.

The attack failed, miserably.

In the November/December issue of the Washington Monthly, Lina Khan presents the untold story of this failed crusade and what it means for future efforts to reform America’s food industry.

Read “Obama’s Game of Chicken” here.

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Paul Glastris

Paul Glastris is the editor in chief of the Washington Monthly. A former speechwriter for President Bill Clinton, he is writing a book on America’s involvement in the Greek War of Independence.