The Republican Farmer's Committee is an interest group formed by wealthy farmers (Agri-Barons) of the New California Republic to further their agenda. Dating back to President Tandi's reign, it pushed to overturn laws limiting the acreage of fields that could be owned by a single person. While Tandi proved impossible to convince, her successors had different opinions. The laws were finally overturned by President Aaron Kimball, giving Agri-Barons unprecedented wealth and influence.
- ↑ Fallout: New Vegas Official Game Guide Collector's Edition p.456: "Controversy over Economic Development
The NCR's economy is based on two resources: its great Brahmin herds, and swaths of land that have been restored to arable condition. These provide the nation with meat, leather, and starchy vegetables. During President Tandi's presidency, regulations limited the number of cattle head and the acreage of fields that could be owned by a single person. Despite constant pressure from the Stockmen's Association and Republican Farmer's Committee, such regulations loosened only a little so long as Tandi was in office. Following her death, however, they eroded until President Kimball overturned them completely.
As a result, the past 12 years have seen the rise of the Brahmin Barons and Agri-Barons: captains of industry who are, by post-apocalyptic standards, spectacularly wealthy. This has given birth to a number of cottage industries, from the rebirth of luxury goods production to "journalism" that reports on the latest purchases, commissions, and "life lessons" of the newly rich and famous.
The past 12 years has also seen a change in attitudes towards collective welfare. Citizens of the NCR rarely face significant dangers on a daily basis, and survival is an assumption rather than an aspiration. Citizens are far more reluctant to share food and other resources, and the person who provides services free of charge, whether it's something as quotidian as sewing or as rarefied as surgical expertise, are now the exception rather than the rule.
An added economic strain is the scarcity of salvageable goods. Sixty-five years of scavenging has done a good job of picking clean the wastes of what was once Southern California. Rare are those individuals who can make a living by scavenging and hunting what they need.
A consequence of these economic and cultural transformations has been the rebirth of wage labor. Whereas one's labor was until recently seen as benefitting and belonging to a collective (whether a family or small town), it has now become a commodity. To earn their keep, many citizens must seek an employer and trade the sweat of their brow for Caps.
Citizens of the NCR hold a variety of opinions about these developments. Many boast of their nation's economic strength; others decry what they feel has been lost. Many curse the selfishness of their fellow citizens, usually while pursuing aims that will benefit only themselves or their families. Here in the Vegas wastes, however, nearly all citizens will agree on one matter: opportunity has dried up back home, and to earn a fortune, one must come East."
(Behind the Bright Lights & Big City)