First, I didn't notice Bill Duesing saying that he thought any production
methods other than organic should be eliminated tomorrow, he was just
talking about his own experiences. This seems to elicit a common
defensive reaction whenever organic methods are described as
beneficial or even possible--"but not everyone can do it that way." Sure,
but lets keep trying to do better.
Second, the Irish potato famine occurred before the concept of "organic"
arose, and can't legitimately be accused of being consistent with organic
management. Most notably, it was a failure that could be more
accurately ascribed to monoculture and genetic uniformity, as Mooney &
Fowler so brilliantly explain in Shattering. This system is not organic, and
a modern grower who did not rotate potato crops, for example, would
not qualify as an organic grower.
That's it for now--thanks for so many thoughtful postings.
USDA, National Organic Program