On Sat, 25 Mar 2000 08:44:21 -0800, Loren Muldowney wrote:
>Did y'all know that a kid is legally a "drug dealer" for giving tylenol
>to another kids. Got expelled from school, etc, etc, minimum
Apology not necessary. Anbody else see the close similarity to the
"natural vs. synthetic" discussion in organic agriculture?
Focusing on materials instead of healthy system management gets us in
trouble, as in---
a) Ban all drugs in school because it is easier than actually thinking
about differences of degree.
b) Ban nearly all synthetics in organic agriculture for the same
c) Encourage RU-486 instead of teaching healthy management (meaning
restraint) of one's sexuality.
d) Try to control guns instead of facing the social problems that arise
when you live based on *feelings.* [did you know, BTW, that a 5-yr old
was recently murdered (ie, not accidentally) by a 6-yr old using a BB
e) Ban all GMOs instead of learning to apply wisdom.
f) Push for campaign finance "reform" instead of addressing the problem
of pervasive bias in most media.
g) Take the cap off farm subsidies and "emergency" aid, rather than
raise questions about the persistently sloppy management of many farms,
to say nothing of externalised costs.
I could easily get to z) here and still have more to go. My point is
that these are all part of the same tapestry, and attempting to view
any of them in isolation is likely to be unproductive. My
*interpretation* of the pattern I see (in agriculture as well as in the
social framework of which it remains a part) is that we are confronted
by a contemporary cultural ethos that embodies three elemental
Feelings over-ride reason
There are no absolutes (which of course is an absolute, in itself, and
a classic example of self-contradictory thinking)
Focus on treating symptoms, instead of trying to understand the
underlying problem (because we want to *feel* like we're doing
something, right away)
I suspect that until our cultural ethos arrives at a point of greater
consistency and balance, we'll continue in this Kafka-esque phase where
we see things like draconian zero-tolerance policies in schools;
farmers subsidised to remove trees while their neighbours are
subsidised to *plant* trees; absolutely bizarre and contradictory laws
(as in California, where a 17-yr old needs written permission from her
parent(s) to have her ears pierced, while a 12-yr old can get an
abortion and the parents are not even notified); and organic
certification programs declaring that there is an important difference
between "synthetic" and "natural" forms of potassium sulphate.
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