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Good article....what are your thoughts? Agree? Disagree?
Tags: hemenway, myth, reliance, self, sustaining, toby
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Carey, I totally agree with you. And I think that's what the article was stressing. Not individual self reliance, nor the self reliance of a single family (unless you've got a large one) but self-reliant communities. The stress on relying on communities is an important part of the picture. If you've gotta do everything yourself, it's never gonna work.
@ George: I agree; "If a few more people would simply try to produce some of their own food, that would be a good thing". I have been striving to feed a family of four (with surplus) on one acre and have achieved good results but in order to be truly self-sustainable requires more than one family. IMO it takes at least three to six families to make this concept possible...but IMO, it can be done.
@Alex V: I liked the article and I agree that in most cases being responsible is more important and particle than trying to be food independent. However, there are still many communities that are able to "prove" independent living. In Indiana, where I grew up, there are quite a few Amish and other communities that are, to this day, self reliant from food to shelter and clothing.
I don't have the setup anymore but a few years ago I was able to produce all our own food (with surplus), including starches; grains, potatoes etc. plus meat and dairy on just over an acre. This included all feeds for animals, using human/ animal labor exclusively. However this was a full time occupation for three adults or two adults and two part time help (kids after school). Again, however the income produced from surplus was not enough to support the other needs like rent, clothes, utilities etc. At best we could pay maybe one third to half the bills if we were more stringent and bartered more efficiently.
Like my comment to George, I do think it possible but very unlikely given the easy and cheep access we still enjoy from products from China and other third world sources that trade in abuse. There is not enough incentive for us to truly adopt true self reliance while we are still in a petroleum based, capitalistic economy. I believe things will change when and if we ever get back to commodity based local economies.
fully self sufficient in providing for their own food, clothing, shelter, energy - - - - I don't know of know of anyone who is doing it. The closest I've seen to it was the last holdouts grandfathered in ANWR - don't know if they're still there or still alive. Even they were resupplied on occasion by plane. Myth is right. Preppers mostly stockpile, which, to me, is not self sufficiency, except on a temporary basis. What the heck is being fully self supporting in community needs? Don't get that one. If a few more people would simply try to produce some of their own food, that would be a good thing.
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