The linear, single species idea of farming is an assault on ecological function. Something's going to break down in that system - anything from soil structure, in economics... but where to start is with true ecological function.
I am libertarian, and Americans generally are, more than, say, Canadians and Australians.
We only want autonomous collaborators that are incentivized to make or break their own income.
No civilization on the brink of collapse has ever changed fast enough to avert collapse.
The pig is not just pork chops and bacon and ham to us. The pig is a co-laborer in this great land-healing ministry.
The butcher, baker, and candlestick maker have been around a lot longer than supermarkets and Wal-Mart.
Our main deal is pastured livestock. So we have beef cattle, pigs, turkeys, laying chickens, meat chickens, rabbit, lamb and ducks - egg-layer ducks.
An orchard can grow pastured poultry underneath. A beef cattle or sheep farm can run pastured poultry behind the herbivores, like the egret on the rhino's nose.
There's a big difference between industrializing production of tractors and industrializing production of food. We like technology, but we really like technology that allows us to do better what nature does itself.
I see myself today as Sitting Bull trying to bring a voice of Easternism, holism, community-based thinking to a very Western culture.
From my earliest memories, I loved the farm. My grandfather was a charter subscriber to Rodale's Organic Gardening and Farming Magazine and had a huge, well kept garden with an octagonal chicken house in the corner.
You know, in our culture today, our Western, reductionist, Roman, linear, fragmented... culture, we don't ask how to make a pig happy. We ask how to grow it faster, fatter, bigger, cheaper, and that's not a noble goal.
God doesn't just miraculously and physically intervene in the whole process, so if I just go and drop a bunch of chemicals and herbicides that leach into the groundwater, I can pray all day to keep my child healthy, but if the herbicides gone into the groundwater come up my well, my child's going to drink that water.
The cows shorten the grass, and the chickens eat the fly larvae and sanitize the pastures. This is a symbiotic relation.
I think it's important to understand that in the big historical context of things, there has been land degradation from civilisation since the beginning of history. I mean, the Rajputana desert in India is a manmade desert caused by overgrazing.
We control health and pathogenicity by complex multi-speciated relationships through symbiosis and synergy. Portable shelters for livestock, along with electric fencing, insure hygienic and sanitary housing and lounging areas, not to mention clean air, sunshine, and exercise.
If we fail to appreciate the soul that Easternism gives us, then what we have is a disconnected, Greco-Roman, Western, egocentric, compartmentalized, reductionist, fragmented, linear thought process that counts on cleverness.
We can move water easily with plastic pipes. We can move shade around with nursery cloth like a tinker toy for animals and plants. Yet we have developed this necessity to grow food with chemical fertiliser because we have forgotten the magic of manure.
A pig has a plow on the end of its nose because it does meaningful work with it. It is built to dig and create soil disturbance, something it can't do in a concentrated feeding environment. The omnivore has historically been a salvage operation for food scraps around the homestead.
That's the joke about confinement pigs: they taste like whatever sauce you cook them with.