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8146Re: [fukuoka_farming] Re:Copyleft and Fukuoka's books

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  • Dieter Brand
    Nov 11, 2008

      What do you mean by ideology?� The occasional joke aside, I'm prepared to defend every single word I said on this and any other list by argument, and if you or anyone�can show�my arguments to be erroneous, I'm prepared to say thank you, I was wrong, I see what you mean.� Is that ideology?

      >�From this one post I can point to (and did) the ideologies you are
      > working under. A protective interest in defending personal property, a
      > dislike of socialism, land ownership, etc..

      These are your assumptions.� I'm not prepared to publish my personal curriculum vitae on the list (nobody should), but from the time I can remember, my heart has always beaten "on the left", and I don't mean "left" in the US sense of progressive democrat, but in the European sense.

      But I have never been prepared to confine my thinking to little boxes, and when I see somebody talking nonsense about the virtues of collective ownership and the like, I don't see why I should not call a spade a spade.

      >�These are not, you must�admit, precepts of natural farming and
      > are a distraction to the main�topic.

      Remember, the distraction was not from me, my initial argument went unanswered, and the post I replied to was dug out by someone with his own agenda months later.� You really try hard to find fault with me personally.� I think we should not discuss each other's personality in public on this list.� If there is something that bothers you, you are welcome to contact me off-list.

      > while receiving precious little help from the list on how you
      > might have overlooked something.

      Here we go again!� The assumption (or ideology) that a method has absolute validity, in any place and always, even if that has not been demonstrated and even though you haven't told us if you have ever carried out that method anywhere.�And if somebody reports facts that�do not match the theory, well then he�must have "overlooked" something and we must fiddle around with�the facts�until they�correspond to the theory.� I take my hat off to Fukuoka the _farmer_, who after 30 years of practice was able to say: "the proof is growing right in front of your eyes".� I don't have the same respect for people who, having read a book, claim that they know it all and that farmers who don't see it their way are really stup*d .� And please, don't start with talk about "methodless methods" or other such meaningless meaning as we have heard on this list before.

      Dieter Brand

      PS: I'm�still not�through with�the reflection you�have�told me to do.� But I may have a first hunch about��wanting to win an argument".��This is�really only a hunch, so don't take it too seriously: I think the competitive instinct is universal, we wouldn't be here otherwise.� Further, to present a clear well reasoned argument�is a bit like putting on a clean shirt and trousers to present a positive image in public so as to maintain our self-esteem and to show respect to others.� Nobody wants to be with a stinking old jerk.� I think a lot depends on what we try to do.�Do we try to help others, provide information, provide our ideas about how we see things and promote the discussion on Natural Farming?� Or do we only reply to criticize and find fault with somebody?� I think, with a few exceptions, there is a lot of goodwill and desire to help others on this list.�It is only the framework of discussions that makes things go awry at

      --- On Tue, 11/11/08, Steven McCollough <steb@...> wrote:

      From: Steven McCollough <steb@...>
      Subject: Re: [fukuoka_farming] Re:Copyleft and Fukuoka's books
      To: fukuoka_farming@yahoogroups.com
      Date: Tuesday, November 11, 2008, 4:25 PM


      Thank you for taking this in the context of improving the discussions on
      the list.

      Dieter Brand wrote:
      > Steven,
      > Thanks for your comments and critique.
      > But what do you mean by my �ideology�
      > Hence, I do take issue, with your claim that I �try to propagate an
      ideology more than anyone else on this list�. If you make such sweeping
      accusation, the very least you have to do is to give some specific examples.
      I should have said, "as much as anyone on the list." By ideology I
      those core values and impressions we have built up over the years that
      inform our perceptions of the world and natural farming in this case.
      From this one post I can point to (and did) the ideologies you are
      working under. A protective interest in defending personal property, a
      dislike of socialism, land ownership, etc.. These are not, you must
      admit, precepts of natural farming and are a distraction to the main
      topic. At the very least, they make the discussion expand to the extent
      we lose site of the original topic. Since your posts are also lengthy,
      these diversions are doubly deviating from the topic.
      > it is not because I enjoy criticizing others, but because, for much of the
      time, the level of debate on this list really is rock bottom (if you think this
      is only my view, you are wrong).
      I can agree the discussions fall short of what they could be. Rock
      bottom and I would have left long ago. My point is this post of yours is
      no better in this respect. I believe we would have been better served if
      you would have pointed out the availability of the books on the Journey
      to Forever site, its implications for copyright issues and left it at
      that. On the other hand, your posts have more meat as a rule than the
      average so please don't leave.
      > To finish, just let me say a word about the �gist� of what I�m
      trying to say (the part you forgot to quote)
      I didn't quote that because it was a sideline issue to your post. While
      probably the most important issue it was not your main point. From my
      earlier post: "I would like to see more discussion of natural farming
      just as you suggested."
      > : �I�m mainly interested in Natural farming�, how (or if) it can be
      practiced in environments different from that in which it was conceived, �and
      a constructive discussion of the same�. Natural Farming probably means
      something different to each one of us.
      This is a great summary of what we all want. Unfortunately, there is
      precious little I can add so I lurk most of the time.
      > I do subscribe to a number of Japanese groups on Natural Farming and know
      that there are people who, ideology aside, do develop practical methods for
      growing food for subsistence or market farming and gardening by what can broadly
      be described as �natural� means. In different climates, these methods are
      of limited use; hence, I had hoped that this list would
      > serve as a platform to discuss such issues.
      We need a person or persons that can bring this valuable information to
      our list, as I remember you have done on occasion.
      > Unfortunately I feel, that in all the years I have been subscribed to this
      list, discussions have rarely gone to the core of the matter, and arguments, if
      there are, are all too often presented as items of believe that cannot be
      I have noticed this also, it seems the natural farming concept on the
      list is suffering from the same problems of dogma you see in organic
      gardening circles. It has come to the point organic growers can't
      certify because of an entrenchment of the concepts, at least in America.
      You can't have organic chicken that is fed meat, for example, even if
      the feed is organic and meat is part of their natural diet. You have
      argued a need to till in semi arid farming and have taken flak for
      breaking Fukuoka's four principles, while receiving precious little help
      from the list on how you might have overlooked something. Best of luck
      in your natural farming and thank you for informative posts.

      With respect

      Steve McCollough
      > From: Steven McCollough
      > Subject: Re: [fukuoka_farming] Re:Copyleft and Fukuoka's books
      > To: fukuoka_farming@yahoogroups.com
      > Date: Monday, November 10, 2008, 4:13 PM
      > Dieter,
      > I must begin by saying I have enjoyed and profited by your posts in the
      > past and continue to encourage your participation. I have posted
      > infrequently because my contributions have been solely on my experiences
      > with natural farming which unfortunately are limited in extent and
      > successes. I must say though your attitude seems more on the order of
      > list proctor than participant. Also, please take advantage of quoting
      > certain sections of the previous posts you are referring to. It took me
      > nearly an hour to piece together who and what you were referring to even
      > given the subject line similarity.
      > Please see specific comments below.
      > Dieter Brand wrote:
      >> Vincente,
      >> Did you know that you can download two of Fukuoka�s books from Steve
      > Solomon�s Soil and Health library at: soilandhealth.org?
      > This is the best single answer to all the previous posts as it addresses
      > the property rights issue while still leaving those unable to purchase
      > books an avenue to get knowledge.
      >> To have a meaningful discussion we need to have the courage to tell
      > truth as we know it even if it is not trendy or popular. E.g., if a
      person, who
      > never made any contribution to this group, suddenly turns up to sell
      > books, then we need to be able to ask a question about copyright, which
      > often been discussed but never been answered. Somebody also needs to
      point out
      > that to use another person�s labor to make a commercial profit by
      selling his
      > work is neither legal nor moral.
      > I agree with this totally.
      >> To have a meaningful discussion we also need to reply to what the
      > person is trying to say and not use part of an argument as an opportunity
      > propagate our own ideology.
      > It seems to me over the years you have "used part of an argument as
      > opportunity to propagate our own ideology," more than just about
      > one the list. This is just so slippery a concept I don't know how you
      > can differentiate your views and posts from propagating an ideology.
      > Your views on dry land no till for example.
      >> I think it is preferable to do so in our own words and not argue with
      > arguments of others by the PC�s copy and paste commands or by Internet
      > I strongly disagree with this sentiment. Only by using the whole body of
      > discussion on an issue is the truth to be found. I find the arguments of
      > higher authority just as valuable as the personal experience of the
      > novice. Also, some on this list have more experience than others and
      > feel this is authority enough for their arguments even when in contrast
      > with a more prevalent view. I have a tremendous respect for your view,
      > for example, while always looking for a counterpoint.
      >> Regarding a World without private property (if that is what you are
      > after), �real socialism�, the sole experiment of doing away with
      > property known to mankind, has collapsed under its own contradictions
      after tens
      > of millions of death and hundreds of millions were reduced to extreme
      > and humiliation. They even managed the incredible feat of creating a high
      > degree of penury for the people while at the same time squandering natural
      > resources and destroying the environment in a big way.
      > The fact that you felt it necessary to defend intellectual property
      > rights is a diversion of the list precepts in my view, as was your
      > defense of anti socialism that followed. I, for example, attribute a
      > different cause to squandering natural resources and destroying the
      > environment.
      >> If you have any experience with farming and in particular with Natural
      > Farming you know that a farmer needs to �own� his land;
      > I disagree with this also. While this is the paradigm we suffer with
      > now, it may be a root problem. You, for example, have let the financial
      > aspects of making a profitable farm operation affect all your views on
      > natural farming. Some, if not most, on this list are interested in
      > blending farming into life - not blend life into a farming.
      >> Bible mentioned something about �giving� being nobler than
      > �taking�. Alas, human avarice being what it is, that idea never made
      > very far. Yet by making an ideology out of freely taking what was made by
      > others to serve our personal gain seems to propel human perversion to
      > levels. And you say that is Natural Farming!?
      > I must have missed where someone said freely taking what was made by
      > others was natural farming. Giving is making more headway than you seem
      > to give credit for. If we were to ask Fukuoka if his words should be
      > available to all, I think he would say yes. Should we condone copyright
      > infringement? No, that would be going too far. Should we encourage
      > reasonable laws concerning copyright as was the main argument of some
      > here? Yes.
      > This reply is offered in respect and to further the discussions on the
      > list. If, Dieter, you wish to win this as an argument, I'm sure you
      > with elegance as demonstrated by past eloquence. I would hope instead
      > you see it as constructive review. Your "ideology" may not be
      > to
      > you, but it is to me. I would like to see more discussion of natural
      > farming just as you suggested. Unfortunately this is not it whether as
      > initiator or responder.
      > Steven McCollough
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