Kari Gunnlaugsson

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since Jun 22, 2011
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Recent posts by Kari Gunnlaugsson

Alan, thank you for your great work, and for taking questions.

On my farm I am finding two obstacles to implementing the very high stocking rates and frequent rotations that you favour (to my understanding). The first is a complex topography and a mix of forest / grassland vegetation that makes moving portable fence difficult and time consuming. The second is a real lack of time on a very diverse farm that's run short-handed and can't afford hired labour.

How do I identify the minimum threshold values for stocking rate and timing at which I am beginning to have a positive effect on my land?

If I'm forced to make compromises from an ideal system, what would be the best strategy to minimize damage? (I am currently under-grazing with a very low stocking rate)

Thanks so much..

10 years ago

Julie Anderson wrote:

Alternative economic methods of exchange other than money are nice to theorize about, but I think that the reality is unless there is a cataclysmic financial event, the status quo of using money for exchange is going to persist.

huh? While you were away..

"A recent report by the Government Accountability Office found that the 2008 financial crisis cost the U.S. economy more than $22 trillion.

The GAO said that the financial crisis’ impact on economic output could be as much as $13 trillion and that money lost by U.S. homeowners reached $9.1 billion. "

Millions losing their homes, millions out of work, dust blowing through the rust belt, and that's just USA, never mind the ongoing eurozone debt crisis or the perennial economic misery in much of the developing world...I'm certain things will get more cataclysmic, but I'd say we have ourselves a pretty good start.

I don't think anybody suggested getting rid of money, we wanted to talk about ways to re-invent money so it worked, for people and the planet. This can be started at a community scale. By any of us. I think reform of local economic systems is an essential part of the permaculture vision if it is to meet it's potential in developing viable, sustainable human life-ways....if it's to be more than some pleasant diversion, or just a backyard hobby for vegetable fetishists.

Yes this is only peripheral to this thread topic, maybe someday someone will start another, more relevant one. Sorry, I just neglected to 'unfollow' this thread...i'll do that now...

Well I've just spent some pleasant hours communicating with horses, and I have to say I'm really disappointed to come back here to people miscommunicating.

Come on, it's not a winner-take-all Cage Match. We're sharing ideas. Maybe if we listen and try to understand each other we can combine them creatively and come up with some new and powerful ideas. Maybe we'll see the world in a slightly different way. Or understand more how other people approach life.

If we can't pull that off here in this place, how the hell are we going to be able to advocate for positive changes out in the real world?
We're all people who genuinely want to make the world a better place, if we have different opinions it doesn't mean we are attackers or opponents.... lets not waste our energy with pointless argument, outside there is the Real Work to do.

to Paul...you said..

paul wheaton wrote:
Robert has stumbled over logic vs. idea. He has theories about alternatives to money. I am choosing to skip over Robert's stuff.

Limiting the scope of debate is such an easy way to suppress important ideas. It's ubiquitous in the mainstream media. It seems like a place like this would be ideal to discuss alternate ideas and search for positive ways forward. Since we've started a thread on whether or not we should monetize aspects of permaculture why wouldn't we look at all the ways we might approach this?

I would challenge you to spend a bit of time some evening exploring some of those ideas just to see what they are about rather than rejecting them out of hand. Specifically, I don't think he's advocating alternatives to money...I think he's proposing ways of making money work for us, for society, for the planet, instead of carrying on with the current disfunction in financial systems.

to Robert...yes i like the LETS idea a lot...there are a lot of interesting local currency systems out there and i think they are a great way to build community. They seem like a natural fit for permaculture economics. They also allow people to begin to decouple their lives from the world of central banks and wall street, and I think they are a super strategy for building up resilience and regaining some local economic autonomy.

They even allow you to play a bit with ideas like negative interest, buy putting a time limit on the currency or having it devalue the longer you hold it....this could help keep things flowing, and prevent the stagnation and hoarding we are seeing that can tip things into recession. They did just that with a number of local municipal currencies that were issued during the Great Depression, and it was very successful.
Please, somebody watch the video I linked to.

They are important ideas. Lets talk about the big picture. It's not a choice between the status quo of our current economic system and theft or slavery. That's a false choice. And our current system of economics is full of theft and slavery.

There are other options out there we need to explore and develop.
I'm done...off to go work the horses.

Logic and Ideas are entirely different, though.

Logic is a method, a system of thought, a means of developing proof or inference. It's independent of the content, it's a set of thought rules.

Ideas are content. Logic can be used to manipulate and work with ideas. Logic doesn't generate ideas, they come from the human spirit.

I really think Charles Eisenstein has some great ideas on this that the permaculture world should be exploring and talking about.
'sacred economics' film clip

This short video is a great introduction and primer to some of them.
To be fair, I don't think that Robert is advocating theft or slavery. I think he's asking us to re-consider the idea that our money-system is value neutral. There are a lot of hidden assumptions and values built into the structure of the current economic system that lead to various inequities and a damaging way of relating to the earth. That's not the same as saying that making a living from your own initiative is bad or that any form of money is evil.

Maybe it should have it's own thread? If the goal of permaculture is in fact to create a permanent culture, or way of being human that is in alignment with the natural constraints of the planet, then a healthy economic system is going to need to be a part of that vision. For one thing the idea of growth needs to be replaced with a steady-state economy...something at odds with the current system where all money is created as debt, like a giant planetary ponzi scheme.

That discussion is really different from asking 'should all permie stuff be for free'...In a more ideal economy we would still all need to make our livings, and furthering permaculture should be a valued contribution to society that people can be compensated for.
Hi Kate... Have you spent time in rural prairie before? I'm in Alberta so I can't speak for the specifics of that area.

Two things you might want to think about though..things I find challenging about my place..they are more socio-economic than they are about land viability, I'm pretty sure you would be able to make the land work just fine.

First, how much driving are you willing to do? There used to be schools every four miles on much of the prairie...now everything is depopulated and centralized and auto-centric, and I need to drive a seventy mile round trip for supplies. It looks like Melville would be your main center, and trips to Yorkton or Regina now and then? Are you willing to go without things like music events or nights out / evening classes or lessons, etc? Or are you going to be ok with spending an hour and a half in a car in order to go and do something? If kids are in the picture, how long is the bus ride, is the local school about to be closed, what's the travel time if they want to go to cubs or swimming lessons or something??

The second, related thing...if you are going to be earning a living off the land, how far is your nearest market? You might find that Regina might be your closest market. A lot of prairie farm-folk will already be growing their own massive gardens. Also they are unlikely to pay a premium for organic or naturally raised food....there seems to be a prevailing attitude in the more rural areas that home grown food should be cheaper than what you buy in the store, and that's pretty hard to compete with. If you're gong to sell in the city, what are the travel costs and time commitments?

Just a couple of things to consider, good luck on it! It looks like nice country with lots of wetlands and close to some parks.

10 years ago

Robert Meyer wrote: We need to critically examine the subject, rather than trying to prove who is wrong or right. No one is actually. We need to strategize on how to come up with an answer, and figure out what will make our society a better place.

hurray! that's the kind of discussion i'd like to be a part of.

Regarding the monsanto analogy, i don't think that's a fair or accurate one. Monsanto is, in fact, patenting knowledge and controlling it for their gain.

In the case of the rocket stove pdf, there is no element of control or restriction on the knowledge. It's out there and widely available in lots of formats. You could build one entirely off what is available free online. You could, in turn help friends build one or go to asia and teach people there to build one...no problem, no lawsuits... What the PDF does is offer people who don't feel confident or who need a sure-fire quick plan to follow a quick and convenient way to make a stove that's gong to work right off. Like it's september and winter's coming, and you don't want to be experimenting. Someone like that might Choose to buy a PDF plan to work from, because it's going to make their life easier and better and help them get on to doing other things. I don't see anything wrong with that, or with someone providing that as a service being compensated. No one's monopolizing the knowledege.