The Sustainability Dilemma

The Omnivore’s Dilemma, Michael Pollan’s new, oft-discussed book, was reviewed in the NYT Sunday. I haven’t read the Pollan yet—we love his stuff, but we like to try to read from the library. We finally gave up in this case—to Portland’s credit, the library waiting list for this book is 150 library users strong. We strolled up to Powell’s on Saturday and bought it. Patrick will probably get it to first, since I’m still in the midst of Garbage Land (really good, really hard to face). David Kamp wrote the Times review of the Pollan book, and it’s quite laudatory. However, he does a classic NYT ending, expressing big-city mockery blended with some unattractive, vaguely whining, but-what-are-we-supposed-to-do? noises. Tom Philpot addresses Kamp’s review quite nicely in a post on Grist’s blog about the review. Philpot speaks to what I was saying in my ELC post about the problems of mega-organic, addressing the need to avoid the temptation of BIG solutions to the big problems facing us.

I feel like we’re a sadly Janus-faced nation right now, on one side an aggressive “I can do whatever I want” stance, backed by a snivelling, “I want my paternalist state to do something about this right now” cower.

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2 Responses to The Sustainability Dilemma

  1. Amy says:

    I just stumbled on your website today while googling “oregon homesteading.” I haven’t had a chance to read all of it yet but it sounds like we have a LOT in common, and I live close to you (I think) at Milwaukie and Powell. I’d love to correspond with you a bit more, share some stories and possibly visit your mini-homestead sometime! I moved here from by way of a gypsy route including some work on a CSA in California. Let’s talk!

  2. Craig & Amy says:

    I just thought I would let you know that Michael Pollan will be speaking at the
    Ecotrust building the afternoon of May 11th. I’ll include the website for details.


    p.s. Thanks for the great chicken information!

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