New Thinking Will Save Agriculture

Dorothy Rowe once said that “99% of suffering isn’t caused by natural disasters; it’s caused by the ideas we hold. And if we believe these ideas are absolute truths, then we suffer and we force other people to suffer.  But if we believe that our ideas are ideas we have created, then we know we’re free to change them” (Beyond Fear, 2002).  Though a psychologist, her argument can be applied to agricultural economics and politics.  Land values, borders, currencies, subsidies, interest, tariffs, trade policies, markets, individualism, competition, inequality and culture are all ideas that we ourselves have created.  But by the fatalistic way we talk about agriculture today it would seem that we are slaves to these concepts. But, if an idea isn’t working for the majority of people, we shouldn’t change to fit the idea but should insist that the idea itself be adjusted, until it meets our needs.  After all, it’s only an idea.

Below is the handout of the presentation “New Thinking Will Save Agriculture” at the Guelph Organic Conference 2013 and the subsequent news article!

New Thinking Will Save Agriculture handout

Guelph Mercury Article. Feb 4 2013

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