In your books you stress the idea that the Taker way is unsustainable because our style of agriculture breaks the law of life. Then in Beyond Civilization you wrote about how to move past the Taker way.

The book was really interesting especially with the examples of creative ways people are organizing themselves differently, but I wondered why you didn’t talk about how to redo our agricultural food system.

I can’t agree with your reply #757, where you say that Totalitarian Agriculture produces food the same way as any other form of agriculture.

Reading about different types of cultivation, I see that agriculture is a way of cultivating by catastrophe, where people till the soil to emulate the effects of a flood (and this method doesn’t tolerate diversity on the landscape) while permaculture/horticulture is cultivation by participating in ecological succession and aiding in building up the soil and fostering diversity in the landscape.

In the response #551, you wrote: “I’ve never said that Leavers and Takers can be distinguished by the way they get their food. They can be distinguished by what they DO with their food. Among Leaver peoples, food is free for the taking. Takers keep it under lock and key so that you have to work for it.”

If locking up the food is a trait that can be used to identify a culture as Taker, why isn’t the act of getting the food through Totalitarian Agriculture such a trait as well?

On 1/11/13 the national academy of sciences released a draft report on climate change that’s open to public comment for three months. This could be a good time for Ishmael.org to inform people about this.

What I found interesting was there policy on agriculture. Chapter 6 page 228 line 1 specifically talks about efficiency in increasing agriculture production in climate change.

How can it be that they do not see the danger of increasing food production. Is it greed? Or they just don’t know?

Regarding your opinion on genetically modified food in reponse to question #712: Given how we in our hierarchical society think today, I agree that use of genetically modified foods will fuel our overpopulation catastrophe and will likely encourage domination of food production by a few companies. I also agree that if the world is going to be saved, that it will be done by those thinking very differently than we do today.

Trying to think differently on the subject, do you think it’s possible to use genetically modified foods to manage/limit food production like your hypothetical feeder in the cage? For example, this year we decide to genetically grow, distribute, and eat only X amount of food to feed our human population of X + 1.

Put another way, could genetically modified food serve as a useful means for producing, distributing, and tracking food production on a scale necessary for the taker culture to manage these processes and stop fueling the cycle of increased food production and population explosion?

Obviously, this type of decision-making would require cooperation and organization by many people with changed minds. Unfortunately, I am woefully unknowledgeable about genetically modified foods, and given your wide-ranging studies, I figured you might have an opinion on whether trying to change minds in this direction makes any sense.

My question concerns your thesis regarding food production and population growth. If you are right, and I rather think you are, then a human community should not grow beyond its ability to subsist on locally produced food sources.

My question is this: how do we define local? I would like to define local ecologically in terms of “bioregions.”

For example, my bioregion, northern Canada, produces no bananas, oranges, grapes, etc. But it does produce very good raspberries. So my fruit diet should consist of raspberries. And if I recover a bit of old wisdom I could learn how to preserve a variety of rasberry products for use over the winter. This makes perfect sense to me, although in an era of global trade it does limit my food choices. Still, ecologically this makes sense to me.

So the second question is this: Do you think the ideas of global trade and competitive advantage (not to mention cheap oil) have led us to an artificial understanding of things like food production? Is this one more source of our disconnectedness with natural processes?

If I am understanding you correctly then the modern “supermarket” is a disturbing place, but the local “farmers market” is to be supported and encouraged. I would be interested in your response.