Thursday, January 14, 2016

Growing Your Own Food, What a Concept!

Growing Your Own Food Is Like Printing Money 

OK, so you can grow some food in your backyard, in a window box or planter on the roof or in the concrete courtyard of your apartment building, etc. etc. etc. Hey, we all know that, right? Right! BUT, the social/cultural sleuth who uses YouTube to gather intel about trends and the significance of social phenomena has a window into something of much greater importance with videos like this one. Quietly smoldering away on the margins of our society is an important change of attitudes, understandings, and behaviors about to happen and this video, which somewhat matter of factly offers some practical information about growing one's own food on one's property AND gives us a glimpse of the luxurious abundance that doing so can bring, is the stuff of R E V O L U T I O N.

What happens when people, educated people who, through the abundance of content on the web, have access to and a strong willingness to share, come to realize that 1)there are diminishing opportunities to meaningfully participate int the economy as workers and employees, 2) they have the means (space, materials, knowledge, their own labor etc.) to produce things on their own, 3) the things produced commercially and offered to them for purchase are shoddy, unhealthy, and damaging to the physical and social environment in which they live, and 4) self sufficiency vs. dependence is an overlooked value of high worth?

There are thousands of YouTube videos available now that are devoted to chucking the mini-mansion and living in a low cost, mortgage free Tiny House -  to producing one's own energy and getting "off the grid" - to staying healthy and avoiding the Medical Industry - to building and manufacturing things as a DIY 'Maker', avoiding commercially manufactured consumer goods - to growing and preserving one's own food - and to producing one's own digital content to relate one's ideas, opinions, and knowledge about any and all of this. This, Dear Hearts, is a subtle revolution in the making.

Are these folks cranks and whackos? I doubt it! Instead they are simple people who see the handwriting on a variety of different walls and who are taking action in some fascinating and heartwarming attempts to improve their own lives. This, in the face of the much stronger, established trend of the population's increased reliance and dependency on government and industry. This is an important shift and probably a VERY healthy one.

In all likelihood it's true, we have over centralized just about everything we need or want. And we've been seduced into becoming more and more dependent on others to get our hands on it. Importantly, the age of technology now provides us with a way out. Instead of waiting for the next power outage, the inability for the grid to provide you with the energy that runs just about everything  in your home, why not put a solar panel on the roof of your home and generate your own? Live in an apartment building, why not induce the landlord to generate electricity by installing generators that capture the gravitation force of descending elevators? That technology's been available for decades! Need pure, potable water? Purchase one of the new systems to capture and purify rain water. For a few thousand dollars invested, you can turn your back on dependence on the municipal supply. Need fuel for your vehicle? Well, there are new electric vehicles which will run on the electricity you generate yourself. Or, there are many ways to produce your own bio fuel.  Better yet, get yourself a bicycle and get yourself healthy by doing short trips that keep you in shape and require no fuel whatsoever.The details to accomplish all of this would, and do, fill many volumes that have already been written. Although, connecting all of these dots and assembling them into a clear, big picture understanding of what's going on is yet to come.

Getting back to this video, though...  the woman who stars in this one takes us out into her garden, which turns out to be something of a one family farm. But the type that doesn't require massive amounts of equipment and large bank loans. I infer that this garden was created with the sorts of materials and tools already sitting and gathering dust in the average American's home garage. And yes, this woman, no doubt, puts in what amounts to, if not a full time, then a serious part time job in doing all of this, but that's the point. Look at the results. The cost, if she and her husband were to go out and buy what she produces, would be many tens of thousands  of dollars AND her homegrown variety is of a higher quality in every respect. She can sell some of this if she chooses to, or perhaps simply barter or gift some of it to neighbors. That may seem like moving backwards in our social development, but is it? What's the upgrade in quality worth? What about the sense of satisfaction and self realization involved? Maybe this move backward in social development, back to the general population actually have some familiarity with producing their own food,  is really to backtrack our steps down what has proven to be the wrong fork in the road, one we mistakenly took a couple of generations back? Seems that way to me!


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