William Sherman Coperthwaite, September 17, 1930 - November 26, 2013
William S. Coperthwaite, architect, author, maker, visionary social critic, and homesteader, has died.  My own family has lost both our sail and our anchor, and today there are thousands of Mainers and New Englanders who grieve the same loss.
A man who inspired many thousands by his life led close to nature and in opposition to contemporary society, Mr. Coperthwaite was often compared to Henry David Thoreau. Similar...

With costly legal battles in the past few years between the State of Vermont and several of our most abundant compost producers, and more conflicts coming up recently, one has to wonder what is going on. It took me awhile to get my head around the situation, because on its surface this just doesn’t make sense.

Organic compost producers have been facing the choice of closing down or fighting costly legal battles re: Act 250 (which farms are fortunately exempt from). Now the state is trying to collect back sales taxes from Vermont Compost Co., suddenly claiming compost is no longer an agricultural product, which has previously made it exempt from sales tax.

The first and most obvious question with all of these...


When I was a much younger man, I once camped and hiked in Big Bend National Park in Texas. The Park is in a remote part of West Texas at the “big bend” of the Rio Grande south of Del Rio.

I hiked in the famous “hot spring” canyons and up in the Chisos mountains. I crossed the river into Mexico in a rowboat captained by a young, English speaking Mexican entrepreneur named Frank who then took me to a small hamlet that consisted of a bar, a general store that seemed to sell nothing but Coca Cola and single mud hovel with wash hanging on a clothesline to dry. 



From Polyface Farm's Facebook page

Yesterday morning at shortly after 7 a.m. the phone rang: it was 911 calling us at the farm. Some cows had wandered out into the road at one of our leased farms.

We've been working on about 400 yards of new boundary fence on this farm and had the old fence all down, the site prepped, and half the new posts pounded in, hoping to finish up yesterday and stretch fence today. We'd left a couple of internal electric...


There is money being made from carbon credits and such, but anthropogenic global warming is not about making money, nor is it about neoliberalism.

Neoliberalism is the application of laissez-faire doctrine to the global economy. The purpose of the Neoliberal Project has been to undermine national sovereignty, destabilize national economies, and establish supranational institutions, e.g. the WTO, that are destined to become part of the infrastructure of a global technocratic state. 
'Free trade' treaties created opportunities for...

By Joel Salatin   Aug. 18, 2013

From Polyface Farm FB page

Why do we need more farmers? What is the driving force behind USDA policy? In an infuriating epiphany I have yet to metabolize, I found out Wednesday in a private policy-generation meeting with Virginia Democratic gubernatorial candidate Terry McCauliffe. I did and still do consider it a distinct honor for his staff to invite me as one of the 25 dignitaries in Virginia Agriculture for this think-tank session in Richmond.

It was a who's who of Virginia...


The closest thing to a state religion in America today isn’t Christianity – its corn.” -The Cato Institute

The great danger of confronting peak oil and global warming isn't that we will sit on our collective asses and do nothing while civilization collapses, but that we will plunge after "solutions" that will make our problems even worse.

– Jeff Goodell, Rolling Stone

As the Washington Post noted in 2011, “ethanol used to be sacrosanct. Corn-based fuels have been subsidized by Congress for more than three decades, ever since the Energy Tax Act of 1978.”  Now, “...


I don’t think too many people are going to argue with the claim that the world is in a mess. It’s definitely a time when we need to re-vision our direction and make some course changes … if there is even time for that. The questions loom large. Where will these changes originate? And, how will they be implemented?

There are a lot of “plans” that originate from the top-down and the outside-in. That is, they are formulated by some umbrella governmental agency and work on the premise that the necessary changes will simply be legislated. This is fascism, any way you look at it. It’s the Nanny State. Such approaches assume that people...



Joining others from across the region, a bus-load of Vermonters traveled to the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) regional detention facility outside of Boston on Thursday to confront the federal agency over the unparalleled rate of detention and deportation of undocumented workers. In addition to ramping up their fight to stop the deportation of organizer and “Human Rights Hero” Danilo Lopez, Vermont’s Migrant Justice organization also made the journey to Beantown to show solidarity with the rapidly...


Once upon a time, a friend and I hiked up to beautiful waterfall in the Rocky Mountains near Estes Park.  We walked up a trail that was very dense with vegetation of all sorts, mostly evergreens, but I am sorry to say, I did not look carefully enough to give an accurate census. After viewing the waterfall, I noticed that with a not to difficult a climb we could get to the top of the falls and look down into the valley below.  When we reached the top of the falls and surveyed what lay before us we both gasped.  The best analogy that I can give you was that of Arlington National Cemetery without the trees and the grass...



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