Jason read my potlatch post and properly applied a little skepticism, in this case to me, and to my motives. You can find his entire comment in the "replies" section of this post, but I've quoted some of it below.
"So are you better than these other farm blogs..."
Not at all. I'm exactly the same as that post that I wrote. Precisely the same. I used income I earned off the farm to buy the farm, and if the farm runs at a loss I subsidize it. The farm wouldn't been here except for my off-the-farm job. You can see clearly what you are yourself. I recognize folks doing exactly what I did.
"...No you must be better than them because you wouldn't stoop to comparing yourself to other farmers in order to stir controversy as if all your readers were dying to know the differences. You would never try to vie for "the most righteous" farm blog. "
Jason, you hit the nail on the head here. I do compare myself to other bloggers, and the primary difference is that I'll tolerate quite a bit more controversy (create it, even) than they will. I think that discussion, even passionate discussion, is good. I'm ok with discussion and will follow it through. Other folks act like they'd like open discourse, but when it comes down to it, they fold like a house of cards.
"...that calling them out is an altruistic desire to defend new farmers that might copy their model with disastrous results..."
As a new farmer that tried to emulate one of these bloggers, with disastrous results myself (See my struggles with farrowing losses over the past 3 years), I do call out people who advocate practices that I sincerely believe will cause harm or disaster to new farmers. My focus is farmer-to-farmer in my blog; not farmer-to-consumer, although many consumers enjoy what I write. I'd like to see more farmers, and I'd like to see accurate, helpful information on the blogs. Getting the hypocrits to stop posting fantasy really IS my goal.
Secondary to that point is that when someone claims to be raising pigs on pasture alone (or "90% pasture") and consumers believe it (and they DO believe it, they want badly to believe it) I've got to deal with their education over and over again. I cannot tell you how many people over the last few years have told me that Joel Salatin doesn't feed his pigs grain (he does) or that he doesn't put his pigs inside buildings (he does) or that his pigs are born on his farm (they aren't) or that his feed is not an industry standard corn/soybean blend (it is). The trick with Joel is that he's always been clear about exactly what he does, it's the consumers who have made up this fantasy stuff. Contrast that to other authors. It harms producers all over the country. "Why can't you be more like your brother?"
"...Note: Why do I call you out for calling others out? "
Jason, you have my hearty approval to call out anyone you see as hypocritical or as promoting harmful or fictional practices. Even me. I have read, understand, and appreciate your comment.
2 days ago