Democracy Rears It's Ugly Head… Again


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    My ancestor emigrated from Ireland in 1773 to make a life in America. After several generations my people appeared in Oklahoma, Sooners in the homesteading rush. Thence to Kansas, then Colorado. Prove up the homestead, sell, move, homestead, sell, move, homestead, etc. In 1989 we moved back to New York State and bought a 300 acre hill farm for $216 per acre, and here we remain. The thrust of this message: I don’t anticipate emigrating to Ireland any time soon, or Greece, Portugul, Spain, or Italy, for that matter. Those are good places, but this is a good enough place for us. Thanks for your efforts.


    birdshak, it seems you’ve come down a line of good decision makers (and hard workers!) well done!…. hopefully, you’re growing lots of food to feed the locals…


    Speaking of growing food I was shredded in a tenants meeting in my building this aft. We have a courtyard flower garden. I proposed turning some of it into a vegetable garden. We are all seniors who would benefit by eating healthy food, reducing food costs and the horticultural therapy aspect. Those who created the flower garden were threatened in the extreme. I fled from the meeting. Change is so hard.


    Nasturtiums are wonderful, beautiful, spicy edible flowers. Okra is closely related to Rose of Sharon and Hibiscus. Maybe if you change the way you see, you’ll change the way you be.


    Birdshak and scandia: this sounds like an interesting theme emerging on food. Perhaps it could be further developed in the Food section of Lifeboat? 🙂

    I’m planning on developing a largish organic salad greens and stir fry vegetable section in my under utilised glass house and would love to learn more on such things as growing and using nasturtium seeds, flowers and leaves, Birdshak, and any other interesting leaves you can suggest. I may sell them at the general store in my local village.

    Don’t be disheartened, scandia. Maybe you can best lead by example. Set up a veggie garden on your balcony. Or try window farming? (a TEDtalk last year)

    ‘Earth turns to gold in the hands of the wise’… Rumi


    I agree, Beguine.

    “Birdshak and scandia: this sounds like an interesting theme emerging on food. Perhaps it could be further developed in the Food section of Lifeboat? “

    I don’t have much writing time as I’m currently working on other projects, but an article on Urban Farming or Permaculture would be great to read and respond to.

    Urban Farming is rather a fad in the Oakland/Berkeley CA area. I expect to have laying chickens in a couple of months that my daughter is raising from chicks.

    Last year I put 3 raised beds in my driveway and had a tiny harvest of tomatoes last year due to very odd weather here, too dry and cool. Now with a dry warm spring with a bit of rain, I can start a few things. Already have ornamental cabbages of white and purple along the front sidewalk. Scandia, perhaps your neighbors won’t realize your odd plantings are food. Here the deer may be the biggest winners; I’m finding rather fewer plants than were here last week.

    Nasturtiums grow like weeds here. Not very tasty – the leaves are too peppery for my taste. I’ve never heard of the seeds being eaten. The flowers are actually very good in a salad along with borage flowers which is a 4 year annual weed in this climate. Borage – ‘Gerard recommended eating this herb in a salad for joy and said that a syrup made of the flowers “purgeth melancholy and quieteth the phreneticke and lunaticke person.” I may have just enough on the volunteer borage to make a cup of tea.


    Glennda, as we’ve already corrupted the responses to this serious post on Democracy can I suggest the most common uses for beautiful blue borage flowers in decades past have been accompanying alcoholic beverages such as the very old fashioned and slightly deadly Pimms No1 Cup (once favoured by English spinster ladies who demurred when proffered anything too alcoholic as unseemly) and the ubiquitous gin and tonic, widely accepted by all – lady or no. But of course, each to his/her own and if tea is your tipple then so be it. 🙂

    Perhaps Gerard said borage “purgeth melancholy and quieteth the phreneticke and lunaticke person” only because it ‘prettied up’ and disguised (the temporary mood lifting effects of) an alcoholic ‘remedy’?

    I think we should move across to food in the Lifeboat so we can further explore the magical properties of plantlife (and nightlife) and let everyone get on with democracy, now, don’t you?


    … referendum eh …

    Watch it turn into a “straw poll” just before it becomes a “never-happened” non-event.


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