Ezra Klein, writing yesterday about Obama and ethanol, argued that rather than subsidies for corn per se the "bigger problem is that Obama supports the 45 cent tariff on Brazilian sugar cane, which is about four times more energy efficient than corn as an ethanol base."

I'm not sure which is the bigger problem. It reminds me, though, that the ridiculous tariff on Brazilian sugar ethanol is just one small slice of the larger set of terrible sugar policies in the United States which are aimed at making sugar cane expensive in order to boost the fortunes of America's beet sugar producers and, indirectly, the high fructose corn syrup industry. What kind of justification one could mount for this perverse effort at sweetener autarky are couldn't quite say, but I have a longstanding dream of a politician handing out bottles of Mexican Coke (made with real sugar) at rallies, drawing vast crowds and powering a massive grassroots campaign for proper sugar.

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