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1 shutdown  Wed, Jun 1, 2011 9:57:10am

It’s not simply about undoing any legislative achievements of the Obama administration. The objective is to take the Bush agenda of benign neglect of market regulations to its logical conclusion: the dismantling of any regulatory framework which might crimp corporate profits. And since we all know (insert sarc tag here) that profits automatically generate new jobs (hey, picking fruit for $1.25 is a job), the GOP can jump up and down and scream about how this is all about jobs. It is not. It is about profits. I like money as much as the next guy, but ultimately, we have to decide whether society is about the welfare of the greatest number of people, or the wealth of the strongest few.

2 shutdown  Wed, Jun 1, 2011 1:44:59pm

One more thought - it is very interesting, in the context of the e.coli outbreak in Europe, that the GOP is attempting to weaken food safety regulations and oversight. This will, over time, drive consumers to the so-called “locavore” movement. Small farms and farming co-operatives will benefit at the expense of large factory farms. That can hardly be what the large livestock and agriproduct companies are hoping for with their lobbying efforts.

3 calochortus  Wed, Jun 1, 2011 2:36:30pm

re: #2 imp_62

I would like to think this will drive people to smaller, more responsible producers, but I have some doubts. An awful lot of people shop by price only and have no idea where their food comes from or how it gets to the supermarket.

I suspect that if people thought about it much they might be willing to spend a bit more so that animals are treated humanely, food supplies are safe, and farm workers don’t die of heat stroke, or develop health problems from agricultural chemicals contacted while working in the fields. But many people are totally disconnected from their food sources.

4 shutdown  Wed, Jun 1, 2011 8:20:57pm

re: #3 calochortus

Demand ultimately leads to an increase in supply, which leds to a reduction in price. Even WalMart has organic produce and locally sourced produce (at least in some areas with nearby agriculture). Higher end chains like already emphasize local connections. People like cheap food, but there is a tipping point where the incremental savings is not worth the incremental risk. I think this tipping point is fast being reached.

5 calochortus  Wed, Jun 1, 2011 9:42:56pm

re: #4 imp_62

Like I said, I hope you’re right, but people are used to the extremely low prices produced by factory farming and there isn’t a lot smaller operations can do to compete on price. When you figure quality in, then its a different game, but I just don’t have a lot of hope that most people really care. I can afford to do things like pay $5-$6 a pound for grass fed ground beef, and I’d rather spend my food dollars on that than eating at restaurants, but I know people who think I’m nuts.

Big Organic isn’t the same as local and sustainable whether its fully organic or not. Nor is it necessarily safe as the Earthbound Farm e Coli outbreak of a few years ago shows. I have nothing against Earthbound Farms, but there is debate as to whether that sort of operation is really sustainable.

But, any improvement is a good thing and I’m happy that there is a greater availability of real food than there was a few years ago. :-)


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