Utne Blogs > Environment

Self-Sufficiency Revival

 by Bennett Gordon


Tags: Environment, self-sufficiency, farming, Foreign Policy,

Urban FarmingThe economic crisis taught many people not to trust the financial markets. Today, an increasing number of people are trying to rely more on themselves. After years of being written off as a unrealistic pastoral ideal, Phillip Longman writes for Foreign Policy that “the self-sufficient worker once again has a chance, whether as a farmer growing vegetables for local consumption or as an open-source software developer who makes a living in his basement office.” 

These new “yeomen,” as Longman calls them, are not just “starry-eyed yuppies yearning for a simpler life of heirloom tomatoes and muskmelons rooted in worm castings.” They’re productive workers who may be able to upend the industrial agricultural system and redefine work-life balance. This new breed of workers will be able to spend more time at home, giving their children the skills they need for the world. Longman writes, “The neo-yeomen won't only be more efficient laborers—they'll also be happier parents, giving their societies a clear Darwinian advantage.” But if the U.S. government wants to encourage this new breed of worker, it should probably guarantee them some health care first.

Source: Foreign Policy

Image by jsmjr, licensed under Creative Commons.