Below is a response from David Weale to Alan Holman’s (the Meddler’s) Guest Column in last Saturday’s Guardian posted on his Facebook Page.
You can read a copy of the Meddler’s Guest Column Here
And you can read a copy of Weale’s Guardian Guest Opinion Here
Facebook Response to the ‘Meddler’ – by David Weale
“I am writing in response to Alan Holman’s column in last Saturday’s Guardian in which he wrote dismissively about the passionate concern of those Islanders alarmed about the connection between high-capacity wells and the continuation and expansion of industrial farming on the Island.
At one point he referred to “industrial agriculture” as though it were a term we just made-up because we don’t like potato farmers, when actually it is a very accurate, straight-forward description of what has happened across the Island for decades.
What do you call it Alan?
What do you call that ‘get-big-or-get-out’ process that has contributed to the elimination of 10,000 farms on the Island over our lifetime?
And what do you call a process that has increased dramatically the amount of commercial/industrial fertilizer pesticide used, and decreased dramatically the amount of organic matter in the soil, to the point where some biologists have declared that much of the earth on the Island is approaching a condition where it cannot be accurately identified by the word ‘soil’.
What term might you employ to describe that process? Some crass individuals call it “progress.” Don’t tell me you are one of those. Unfortunately, it rather sounds that way. At the very best you came across as a fatalist, resigned to the Irving hegemony over the Island countryside.
You have spoken disparagingly of the deep concern of many Islanders for the health of the soil and the well-being of rural culture. Indeed, you attempted to make it sound as if such concern were a tad silly, or overly dramatic.
But I have a question for you Alan. What do you care about? Where is the line in the sand for you, where inaction seems unthinkable and resistance essential?
I think perhaps it is a question you should answer for otherwise many will be left with the niggling suspicion that you care more about the monoculture of the Irvings than about the need for a diversified, more sustainable agriculture; and more about length of french fries than the shortness of the time we have to clean up our ecological act in this province.
And perhaps I am over-reacting! After all, you do call yourself ‘the Meddler” and perhaps that’s all you were doing; having a little fun meddling, and the worst I should say is, “go meddle someplace else,” where the stakes are not so high.”
My Facebook Reply to David Weale’s Response to the Meddler
With regard to this issue, how do we begin to “teach” bigger isn’t always better, because that is the problem. This is especially true when dealing with nature/environment/sustainability (whichever term you identify with) because the concentration of anything removes balance and nature is all about balance. The largest single evolution in the past 80 years (since the end of WWII) has been the redistribution of our population from 80% rural and 20% urban to exactly opposite with those numbers reversing and it is my understanding that this is true globally. The rural voice has been lost to most of our populations and unless we begin to build a new generation of understanding we will continue to experience this downward trend. By the way, why do we need 4 inch french fries anyway?
Mr. Holman definitely appears to have captured a sentiment that reflects a majority of Islanders that prefer to remain ignorant and sit on their hands while the powerful money-driven Corporations and their political supporters place short term gain over long term pain for those of us that remain behind when they pull up stakes and head for greener pastures. Previous research has identified the problem and established a remedial goal which it has NOT met. I wonder who is accountable for that and why this fact, and others, has not been brought up in the house???
Alan Holman is a liberal hack disguised as a journalist. He got a plum appointment by Lawrence Macaulay on the Indian land claims Commission. These people who pose as journalists only for personal gain and political favour are the present day Judas’ to the public. I don’t know how he shows his face in public. Worse yet Holland college will probably have him teaching “journalism ” to young people. Kinda like Rick MacLean.