Hi, my name is D and this is my writings on subjects. I'm no rapscallion or anything at all. If you want to you can read my writings on subjects if you have free time. If you want to argue with me or call me names then please comment. Negative feedback is very welcome...I love dat shit. Me? I'm not even a noun, I'm a fucking verb, dude.

Friday, May 23, 2014

Farming. What's it all About?

Farming is so fun. I love gardening, I grow like beans, radii, tomatoes, carrots, and this and that in a small patch of field ever since I was a little kid.

I used to play that Harvest Moon on the Super Nintendo back in the day too. It was a fun and relaxing game that really had a "back to the land" sort of feel to it and all that. Like visiting an old era, you know? You grow crops, go fishin', pick weeds, give presents to chicks and get one to marry you and everything. A very simple game. Simple game. Very simple.

In real life, is farming supposed to be a simple and relaxing endeavor? Is it supposed to be as simple as it was in the "good old days"? Is it just a simple relaxing little hobby? I don't know about that.

Maybe you haven't noticed but there's 7+ billion dudes and chicks (oh and some trannies) on this planet and they are all hungry to eat food. Can a simple agrarian "good old days" sort of "as god intended" method of farming succeed in feeding 7+ billion people? No, it can't.

Good Old Days?

Were these good old days of farming in real life as much fun as it was for me to simulate them in Super Nintendo's Harvest Moon? Was it really a close-knit community who shared and lived in a cute little utopia...or was it another case of Nostalgia for an Age which Never Existed?

How far back should we go to get to these Good Old Days anyway? Back to the age of hunting and gathering? No, that's way too far. Maybe back before the invention of the tractor? Back before pasteurization? Back before refrigeration? Back before ammonium nitrate fertilization? Before human altered plant strains? Back before what?

Teosinte to Corn
We can't go back before we bio-engineered hybrid plants because people have been selectively altering plants for thousands of years. No crop is what it looked like 10,000 years ago...humans re-plant the seeds from the best plants (over and over and over)...they never planted the seeds the next season around from the crappy plants. Over a long period of time we'd call this an evolutionary phenomenon and just because it took a long time doesn't mean these crops were not bio-engineered by humans. Corn for example used to look more like grass before the strain was bio-engineered by human selection over time.

Is it a good idea to go back before pasteurization? I know it's a big bad science word and all...but all it means is boiling the pathogens out of a substance and quickly cooling it. We've been boiling things for thousands of years too. The Chinese have been boiling wine almost forever. What's so bad about boiling the crap out of things? It saves countless lives. Milk's shelf-like becomes MONTHS instead of days after you pasteurize it.

Is it smart to go back to the days before refrigeration? People didn't always know that you had to refrigerate things or they'd spoil and go bad. In the case that you did not know...you have to keep milk in a refrigerator, or failing that, a cool wet sack. 110%.

Back before chemical fertilizers? Ammonium nitrate is a very scary couplet of words, I'll admit that. It's almost as scary a couplet of words as dihydrogen monoxide...and those words sound super scary as all heck. Although these words are just methods of writing out molecular structures, that's all. The scary sounding dihydrogen monoxide is just 2-Hydrogen and 1-oxygen. Two hydrogen and one oxygen make WATER. Yes, the stuff we drink, swim in, and shower in every darn day.

What is ammonium nitrate? It is 1 nitrogen nucleus winged by 4 closest packed hydrogen atoms plus 1 nitrogen nucleus winged by 4 closest packed oxygen atoms. It sounds like scary stuff but we've harnessed it for use in many effective ways. The most common effective way we utilize this combination of atoms is in fertilizers...they work well...they really multiply the output of crop yields big time.

Are molecules and serieses or combinations of said molecules really things to be frightened of?

Molecules n' Stuff

The whole milky way galaxy we live in is made up of mainly the following shits:

Known Atoms: 5%
(of which..Hydrogen: 93%, Helium: 6%, Oxygen, Carbon, Iron, etc.: 1%)

"Dark" / ?Unknown? Atoms: 95%
(Energies, atoms, matter, and other shit that we don't know what it is)*

That's it, that 5% of the elements in the universe is the stuff we have figured out how to work with. You can't be scared of these words, they are literally our tools as humans in this galaxy to work with. It's like a carpenter being scared of the word "hammer" or a fisherman being scared of the word "fishin' pole" or a farmer being scared of the word "watering can." These atomic particles are the tools we know how to manipulate and use...we cannot be afraid of these words.

*Note: Dark matter is a pretty wild topic and it's not a good idea to venture into whilst writin' 'bout farming. If it's hard to visualize what they mean by this term....try and think of like a glove that you turn inside out...a right hand glove will now fit on the left hand. Right? The glove is still the same glove but it no longer has the same use as it previously did. It is now the opposite of itself. We know we can turn atoms and energies inside-out (so to speak) but we don't know how to go about turning energy inside-out and identifying dark energy. I think.

"Organic" Movement

I can't even list how many people I know who are serious into this organic business. It's this back to simple times...back to the earth...back to the sun...back to who fucking knows where bull-datum what-have-you. It's an anti-science "back to the land" sort of mentality that seems odd.

A key term in the organic movement seems to be "As God Intended" and has a real amish sort of vibe to it. They think God (an imaginary bozo by the way) doesn't want humans to use all the advancements we have made into agriculture. This God doesn't care that humans have to figure out how to feed 7+ billion dudes n' chick n' trannies...he doesn't seem to care about that pressing issue at all. It seems this God character just doesn't want us to use pasteurization or ammoniun nitrate as fertilizer...and that's about all he/she/it is concerned with.

Look, if there is a "God" jabroni up there in fantasy land like you weasels wonderful people believe...why wouldn't he/she/it want us to feed all humans on earth? Why wouldn't he/she/it want us to harness the tools he/she/it gave us to do that?

This God gave us hydrogen (a full fuck ton of it), some helium, a bit of oxygen, and some other junk...and if you truly believe this "as God intended" business then wouldn't God WANT YOU to understand how to alter molecular structures? Would not He/She/It INTEND for you to harness the molecular tools he intrusted into this galaxy we're in?

Es Tu...God?
I say "he/she/it" to refer to this "God" concept people believe in because it's unclear what this concept is. For all I know it could very well be a Tranny-God up there, wherever the fuck "up there" even is, considering there is no "up" and "down" on this rotating spherical orb flying through the milky way galaxy we're all currently on.

Maybe God is a Tranny or maybe not, whatever, who cares what an imaginary thing is anyway?

God Shmod.

Is it Green or Is it Something Completely Different?

For the rest of the Organoes who don't believe in it for a God Shmod reason...what's their deal? They tend to think of the organic movement as a "green" thing...green meaning a movement which is saving the environment.

I'm not sure green is the right color to invoke to rightly represent organic farming. Does not treating a diseased cow with modern medicine invoke the color of green? No, diseased cows don't make me think of kermit-esque things. Does fertilizing with animal cackie make me think of the color green? No, it makes me think of the color shit.

Free ranging cows pooping all day long...the poop running into the local river....the river getting infested with E-Coli. Wow...that doesn't exactly sound too green to me. No way.

See: http://www.nrdc.org/water/pollution/ffarms.asp

You want to really have a nitrate overdose? Forget the chemical fertilizers you're so scared of...think about cow shit fermenting in the ground water. Does that sounds "green" to you? Because it sounds like SHIT to me. One hundred thousand square miles of caca ground water sounds like a whole lot of SHIT.

I know a lot of the holistic/naturopathic/homeopathic hippie community is into drinking their pee pee and all that...but not even hippies have a positive policy on shit. Nobody likes shit. Nobody. Gimme a break. It stinks and it smells.

Science/Efficiency Approach

What about trying to maximize land-use in the most organized of fashions to efficiently produce the largest possible amount of output?

If science produces a strain of rice that has 2x the nutrients and energy (kj) of a previous strain of rice...then why wouldn't we want to start planting that one? Why wouldn't we want a strain of rice germ that could give the eater of the rice 2x the nutrients and energy?

If science finds a safe way to stop bugs from eating and killing the crops...why not use it? I recently heard that guy Christopher Evan Welch (RIP) state that cicada bugs can wipe out an entire crop of sesame seeds in French Indochina. Why would we want to lose thousands of square miles of crops to fucking cicada bugs? Why would we want that to happen? Are you people really that scared of pesticide residue? Then wash your vegetables and fruits before consuming them. That's all it takes.

If science can extend the shelf life of dairy products by 12 times as long by pasteurizing and refrigerating them...then what's the big deal? Our milk lasts longer before turning sour and bad. What's wrong with that?

Is it just me? Does the science approach to farming and attempting to feed 7+ billion people sound like a better approach than the olden days approach?


Look, I love Harvest Moon...I found it to be a very relaxing video game. The simple life of gettin' up and watering plants, and combing my animals with a brush, and giving wild berries to girls in town is a very easy going alternate/fake life that is fun to mentally wash-over into from time to time.

That's just a video game though, in reality we cannot feed 7+ billion people on earth by leisurely farming like that kid in that game does. The organic movement thinks we can operate like this "olden days" style...but it is not possible. We cannot go at it all amish and expect results. It won't work, it 100% won't work. Global staple crop output must be maximized at all times to ensure people are being fed.

The "olden days" style wasn't like our depictions of it. You lived for about 31 years back then, more children died in childbirth than survived, the streets were covered in shit, a new war broke out every day, a new murderous disease strain broke out every week, and slavery accounted for almost all human labor. That's the reality of what it was like back then...it wasn't all bells and frills like on Fucking Road to Fucking Avonlea (sorry this is a very Canadian-specific reference). Um, it wasn't all hayfields and longstockings like it was on Little Fucking House on the Little Fucking Prairie!

There's things about the organic movement that seriously scare me. I notice the same people who believe in this......are the same people who believe in magic, and believe in Gods or Allahs or Wiccas or something, and believe in naturopathic medicine, the same people who don't vaccinate their children, and the same people who believe in chem trails and the whackiest of conspiracy theories...

...it's almost like a universal human rejection of science. The one thing that can help us and save us is the thing people hate the most. I think that's what I find odd about it.

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