reply to post by Northwarden
The eastern philosophy is more complete than that! No tilling, start from that concept. The plants are mulched by straw throughout the growing
season, and simply cut after the season, if annuals, to compost on the spot. The nutrients naturally get re-absorbed back into the soil through
rainfall and gravity.
The problem is that many of the micro-organisms in the soil require the elements within the atmosphere (oxygen and nitrogen, primarily). Responsible
tilling is done for three main reasons - to loosen the soil and keep it from compacting, to circulate nutrients and promote deeper root systems, and
to aerate the soil for micro-organisms that live there.
The reason you plow so that the roots are exposed in the winter is to kill any nematodes and other nasty little bugs that like to hang out in old root
systems between cycles.
Keeping in mind one additional and vital point : Every stage you add to process is one more expenditure of time and possible resources. This
could apply to say, adding glacial dust to the plants to keep pests away as an alternative to pesticides. No good : this is an extra step which
requires aquiring the dust, spreading the dust, and washing off the dust afterwards.
I've got a book full of "non-synthetic" means of repelling and destroying pests. Again - any wise gardener will tell you to use the least amount
of force necessary to deal with a threat. In some cases - that will be chemical pesticides.
Plant onions, leeks, and a variety of other plants typically considered weeds strategically throughout the crop. This naturally repels the
insects, and is proven very effective. These also become additional crops for your harvest.
This is a no-brainer for someone working with small gardens (an acre or less). Doesn't work as well with large-scale industrial crops.
Those sub-earth micro-organisms, worms, beetles, and other lifeforms are your tillers and your oxen replacement.
No, they aren't. While many are beneficial - they are no substitute for responsible tilling practices.
Planting perennial berry bushes, fruit trees (varied depending on climate), walnut trees, and other harvestables in otherwise non-agricultural
lands would lead to these being as common as, say, Queen Annes lace or dandelions. What that means is that no one has to go hungry, or rely on fiat
currency to enjoy anti-oxidizing, nutritious organic produce, ever again.
No, sorry - most soils are insufficient for providing much in the line of fruit-bearing plants. Certainly not in the amounts necessary to even
partially sustain human civilization.
If you want a government-funded "let's make food" ideology - then you'll have to look to local/regional farms. The whole principle of cultivation
is that paying close attention and caring for a smaller number of plants will provide superior sustenance as compared to "throw it to the wind."
reply to post by ..5..
Who signes your paycheck? Dow? Monsanto? You are shilling for someone.
I disagree with you, therefor I must be a shill.
If you must know, I have two pay-checks. One is 'signed' by the U.S. Navy Reserve (RESPAY). The other is signed by Pam McGrath - owner of a local
restaurant here in town.
reply to post by Dasher
You admit that the effects are unknown, but continue to defend your point as though GMOs are safe. The current testing is crap, and we both
acknowledge that. It should cause both sides to do more research and allow more time for things to unfold.
My line of reasoning is hardly inconsistent. Food testing is pretty much an invalid concept to begin with. Human biochemistry is very diversified
and individual, and will only continue to become more diversified as time goes on. The rate at which new biological traits are emerging in the
population vastly exceeds the rate at which they are detected - or would be practical to detect with today's technology and concepts of privacy.
Even taking a rather basic beverage; tea, for example, contains hundreds of different chemicals that differ on such whimsical concepts as the length
of time the leaves are exposed to hot water, how hot the water is, and the altitude at which the tea is brewed (dictates boiling temperature).
Further - drinking tea with lemon increases the absorption of some chemicals, while drinking it with milk nullifies a number of the chemicals thought
to be good. The fluoride in tea is cited as beneficial for dental health but blamed on the increased number of bone fractures amongst study groups
drinking higher quantities of tea.
Testing of specific drugs and chemicals is troublesome enough. Testing food and expecting any kind of conclusive or useful results is almost
impossible. While I am not against testing food - pretty much every "analysis on the health effects of [insert food]" study is horribly
Instead, you use the fact that the testing is poor to justify GMOs as good? That isn't just a stretch, it is logically impossible to
As it is logically impossible to conclude it is bad.
You don't have to eat it.
This is all reminiscent of the whole asbestos outrage. In twenty more years, we'll see the same from fiberglass insulation in people who didn't
wear masks while working with it. And the same with the lead and oil-based paint scare.
reply to post by munkey66
SO you are happy to introduce plant species which may not be harmfull to man and only harmful to those animals which nature relies on to keep a
We generally try and keep other animals from eating our food - unless we plan to kill them, anyway. The exception, of course, would be the various
cereals used to produce pet food.
reply to post by vonholland
by the fact that you said most of your diet is corn syrup, I know no member of ATS should be listening to you. Are you kidding us? you want to
talk about health practices with a diet like that? Awful. You clearly do not care for your body at all
There is nothing wrong with corn syrup. I have a high calorie diet - what doesn't come from complex carbohydrates and protein generally comes from
sweets. I guarantee you that I can surpass you in almost every physical metric. My diet is very intuitive and driven off of my body's needs.
Now - I eat healthy, unlike the vast majority of Americans (even ones who think they eat healthy). The main problems arising from corn syrup
consumption involve its typical application in beverages. It should be common sense that a spaghetti dinner, while containing, say, 450 calories,
will keep you from feeling hungry much longer than a 2-liter of cola (about 800 calories). It's far easier to over-shoot your caloric needs by a
substantial margin if you consume sweetened beverages.
There are no credible studies that causally link corn syrup consumption to any health effects in humans. You could go on about weight, diabetes,
liver damage, etc - and what it would all come down to is that none of these studies have any controls on them. Being overweight, alone, is known to
cause a number of health problems - someone who consumes a large amount of fructose is more likely to be overweight - thus skewing any correlations
between populations with high intakes of fructose and health disorders.
Now - I'm not going to tell you I always have the best of habits - I like soda, and will go through several liters a day if available and not
bothering to control myself. Why am I the skinniest guy in the room? Because I don't eat a plate full of nothing but starches, carbohydrates, fried
foods, etc every time I get the chance. I max out at about three slices of pizza, one plate of food at a buffet (sometimes a second trip for fruit
and/or ice-cream), that sort of thing. I like color on my plate - perhaps it's my inner-artist or some instinctive craving for nutrition - but I
cannot stand to eat a meal that is only oils, starches, and carbs.
When in a 'performance' lifestyle, I switch over to kool-ade or some other sweetened drink mix (some artificially sweetened varieties are
acceptable) and I keep a one-liter or larger water bottle ready with a container of mix in my pack. I'll easily hit 1K calories a day. Of course,
when in those environments, I'm on a 4K calorie diet. The high water and sugar intake helps keep my metabolism up.
The trick to losing weight is to keep your metabolism up. Down-size meals and snack on much smaller portions. Drink plenty of water, and it
wouldn't hurt to keep a small bag of hard candy on hand - when you feel 'down,' - take one (just one). The glucose stimulates insulin release, and
will boost your metabolism for a while. A cup of coffee or tea will also work - possibly better, as the caffeine boosts metabolism, similarly.
The main thing is to pay attention to your body. It knows what is going on better than any princeton study on lab rats. If you get ill after eating
something - avoid it. If you get sick when you eat a lot of something - don't eat that much. If you have a particular craving for something -
consider filling it within reasonable confines. Don't slam down food faster than your body can register how full you have become - take time to
Hunger is not an inconvenience - it is a very useful indicator. We have taken up a habit of eating because we are not full, or simply to be
comfortable (rather than actually fed). This is partly why "everything is bad for you" - because we eat it in completely the wrong way.
You can choose to listen to what I have to say, or discredit it based on the fact that I am just as human as everyone else. In the end - I do have a
pretty good idea of what I am talking about - far more than your average health-food salesman who doesn't know the difference between a chemical and
an enzyme. You are more than welcome to buy into an alarmist market of "organic" produce based on hyped claims and invalid studies that would
receive failing marks in grade-school science.
My main beef with the seed market is the dominance of self-terminating crops - IE; the produce from most seeds on the market is infertile and will not
sprout and/or yield. This concerns me, as it creates a rather interesting scenario should some sort of global catastrophe disrupt the production and
distribution of seeds that account for the vast majority of the market. Demand would not be capable of being met by "heirloom" companies, and when
the food isn't being grown, it pretty much spells the end of organized society. People tend to get a little upset over not having anything to eat,
for some odd reason or another.
This is why I say it would -not- be a bad idea for communities to self-organize and create their own areas for agricultural production and development
(cities would want to gravitate towards hydroponics, rural areas towards setting aside a plot of land and maintaining it). They could man it in
whatever ways they saw fit - but the idea would be to have a self-sustaining set of crops and seeds in place that could be expanded in the case of
adversity to preserve some semblance of social order.
But that idea doesn't paint anyone as the enemy or seek to make people feel cheated out of some abstract right or privilege - so it's not going to