the irresistible fleet of bicycles


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What is it about the ruthless sea? An acculturation in agricultural landscapes, full of flower buds, dewdrops, fresh hay, kittens and baby lambs cannot prepare you for the hard, chilling mechanics of a mechanized fish harvest. To my tender agrarian eyes, the fishing business is brutal. We may call them “stewards of the ocean” but lets face it—they are killing fish.

-Severine on the Alaskan fishing commons in “A Farm Organizer Visits Fish Country: Part II,” for In These Times. Read the rest of the article here!


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severine and the last american food commons, part I

 

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This past Fall, Severine travelled to beautiful Alaska and wrote three comprehensive articles based on her experience for In These Times. From Halibut festivals to fish processing boats to the rugged Alaskan homesteaders, she explores three questions fundamental to her journey:

  • What can the farming community learn from the highly managed, and highly abundant commons of Alaska? Are these lessons applicable to land?
  • What do young agrarians have to learn from the governance and politics of a wild fishery?
  • What does a wild fishery have to learn from the cultural activities of agrarian organizers?

Convinced? You can read the three articles, Part I, Part II, and Part III on In These Times.

But maybe you’re still not sure why young farmers should care about the ocean? We’ll be posting a few short excerpts on the blog throughout day, and we suspect they might just change your mind.

 


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trade, commons, seedstock and revolutionary politics

WEDNESDAY September 2nd
6pm- 8.30 pm
Boylston Hall 105 in Harvard Yard.
FREE and OPEN to the public
We hope you can join for this event presented by Greenhorns’ Maine Sail Freight  in collaboration with “Food Better” at Harvard University.

Join Brian Donahue, Marguerita Desy and John Forti for an evening panel and facilitated public discussion to bring these questions to the fore- ground. The Greenhorns’ Maine Sail Freight project, delivering Maine-grown cargo to Boston’s Long Wharf on August 30th prolongs our public- performance logistics with a series of public conversations. We’ll be at Boston Public Market the whole month of September, and over the winter will start back up with public programs in Maine.

The young farmers movement shares a bold vision, to rebuild a more regional, more sustainable, more resilient food economy. Individual farms and farmers are actors, but we know that coordinating across bigger distances and confronting the structural and economic barriers will require serious teamwork. Our boat-stunt, doing more than $70,000 in regional trade,  is intended to bring into the open some of these larger systems- coordination questions. We Greenhorns want to get guidance from our elders, and lessons from history about how trade evolves, and how systems evolve, and how we should be preparing ourselves for the work ahead.  This panel is mostly about the history of trade in this country, as a way to inform our approach to the re-design of trade-systems.
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a great paper, for land reform geeks

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Land reform is about changing the legal, administrative and fiscal relationship between society and land in order to deliver public policy in areas such as housing, development, the environment, agriculture and forestry in a democracy. It is the system within which rights to land are defined, held and exercised. It is a system governed by law passed by Parliament on behalf of the people of Scotland. It is not about the current proprietors of land or their personal interests. It is about the system within which we all, whether owners of land or not, determine how land should held and used. The system is a public system and it is legitimate and proper for the public to seek to inquire, debate, reform and adapt it whenever it likes.

The Scottish government announced land reform proposals in 2014 to be undertaken in 2015. Read the full paper: The future of land reform in Scotland.

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