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KMO reads from and responds to editorials from Michael Lynch and Charlotte Allen and then plays the conclusion of his recent conversation with James Howard Kunstler which also touches on those two editorials. Other topics include looking for villains, Y2K, and the outrageously elitist notion that some things are better than other things. Jim reminds us that life is tragic and that history does not care if we make bad choices. Stupidity will continue so long as circumstances allow it, and when circumstances change we will adopt new behaviors.


( 7 comments — Leave a comment )
(Deleted comment)
Oct. 1st, 2009 06:31 am (UTC)
As the son of a 2nd Gen poultry farmer I have to disagree, the color of the yolk is related almost entirely to the feed source.

I'm all for locally produced food and sustainable farming practices, but I'm really becoming frustrated with the portrayal of farmers and current farming practices as evil and ignorant and what not.

(Deleted comment)
Oct. 1st, 2009 11:18 am (UTC)
A specifically formulated poultry feed, the difference in nutritional value of the eggs would be almost negligible although less consistent in birds being fed household scraps in addition to feed, as the feed is generally designed as a whole food source.

The issue of yolk colour is really an aesthetic one and feed is supplemented to produce a yolk colour in accord with the preferences of distributors. The levels of xanthophylls, or yellow pigment, in commercially produced eggs is high enough to realise positive health benefits.

I'm all for keeping backyard chickens by the way, I just don't agree egg quality is a very good argument for it. It also has some serious implications for the spread of disease, which makes quarantined commercial production more resilient - assuming of course a ready supply of energy, which could well be a problem.
(Deleted comment)
Oct. 1st, 2009 03:52 pm (UTC)
Yeah, Fresh Eggs taste - and poach - better and it no doubt provides satisfaction that you produced them yourself.

That is an interesting graphic although it doesn't seem to cite anything... If you know of peer reviewed studies I have electronic journal access.
(Deleted comment)
Oct. 2nd, 2009 02:49 am (UTC)
Thanks. I found a list of her publications here, though I couldn't seem to find the relevant journal article so I have contacted her to see if it was published.

It is interesting, though the nutrient levels are not that astounding, certainly nothing like what motherearthnews was claiming,

I'm not sure whether it is happening in the states, but one of our biggest producers in Victoria, Australia is now distributing eggs with "double the amount of omega-3" apparently this is achieved with a multiple phase flaxseed-based diet

Oct. 3rd, 2009 11:07 am (UTC)
Quite a civilized debate
Well it seems we all agree on some things but not on all things. However it is nice to see that there is at least civility in the discourse. Pandemonium makes a very good point of commercial or conventional farmers being vilified. It is the easiest argument to make. However people tend to forget that farmers have been forced by the market, cajoled by University extension and arm twisted by corporations. We must blame ourselves for the system of agriculture we have, as much as the farmers. The people have voted with there dollars for cheap food and the government, in bed with big agra-corporations, has implemented policies that virtually gave farmers no choice but to factory farm. I am sure that pandemonium's grandfather remembers when there where lots of small farms spread out, and eggs gathered hand and actually sold within the community or within the region. Unfortunately progress and efficiency did away with all that so the consumer could have "cheap food." Many alternative forms of farming are making small steps forward. It is up to the consumers to take more responsibility for there purchasing power. As for the government, corporate, and University influence, I leave that up to the the likes of douglain and KMO and there meme breaking podcasts.
(Deleted comment)
Oct. 5th, 2009 02:59 pm (UTC)
Re: Quite a civilized debate
Let's flip this paradigm on its head and look at it from another perspective. We both agree that big agribusiness and government are to blame. However, the passive consumer, by being passive, is also at fault. Being caught in the spell of consumerism is no excuse. Not takeing responsibility for at least part of your own food is contrary to the way humans have lived before the modern era. Passivity has allowed an erosion of culture away from self reliance, to suckling the tit of big agri government. Since there is not much in the way of distinguishing the two. The only way passivity is useful is when it is used for resistance. You keeping chickens is one way of passive resistance. Supporting a CSA and buying organic products are great steps toward passive resitance because they are outside the governmental realm. It is up to those of us who have this knowledge to spread these memes. Will Allen is a great example of someone who is breaking the cycle of passivity with his inner city gardens.

There will always be those among us who "take what they get." We both know big agri-government could care less about them as long as they are productive consumers. As individuals we must dispose of these power structures personally. After all it is the individual who makes and sustains these power structures. The leaves on the tree have no choice but to feed the roots. As individuals we have been given the choice of who we feed and who feeds us. We must give our energy to those things that reciprocate and nourish us, and those around us.

As Gandhi's talisman goes. "When you make a decision, think about how it affects the least among you."

When we make decisions based on the well being of others the world will begin to change. Until then, it's "shut up and eat your Cheetos."
Oct. 6th, 2009 08:04 am (UTC)
Charlotte Allen bibliography
I listen to the C-Realm with a delay, and didn't hear this podcast until late last night. I can't see the original article in the LA Times, but no great loss.

I like to check out authors, and it appears that Charlotte Allen hates lots of folks, not just the people singled out in the LA Times article. Normally I wouldn't post just a string of URLs, but I try to make it a habit to look at an author's other works before spending much time on their ideas. People seem to carry around groups of related memes, and CA is no exception.

(Apologies for the URLs below, but I still haven't worked out how to make proper links on LiveJournal)

CA doesn't like atheists - http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/cifamerica/2009/may/22/atheism-religion-god-richard-dawkins

She seems to be a generally inflammatory sort. A list of her submissions at Independent Women's Forum: http://www.iwf.org/authors/inkwell/7.html#listing

There is someone she likes -- really, really likes - the Pope:
http://www.beliefnet.com/Faiths/Christianity/Catholic/2008/04/Sorry-But-The-Popes-Mass-Thrilled-Me.aspx?p=1 (I didn't need to read more than the title of that one).

She posts frequently at Beliefnet. A list of her submissions: http://www.beliefnet.com/search/site.aspx?q=%22charlotte+allen%22 and I think you'll agree she's got little in common with the C-Realm audience.

Except for her effect on you, KMO, I certainly wouldn't have gone beyond the first paragraph of any of her articles. I've got a heart condition, and I like to keep my blood pressure down. :-)

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