Another Mad Farmer acknowledges my debt to the life and thought of Wendell Berry, the most persistent and prescient critic of our food system and the culture that created it that we have. The title comes from Berry’s Manifesto: The Mad Farmer Liberation Front, which enjoins us to
Expect the end of the world. Laugh.
Laughter is immeasurable. Be joyful
though you have considered all the alternatives.
(from The Country of Marriage, 1973)
Mortality confronts each one of us, and at my age that is a reality that needs to be recognized daily. But the end of the world as we know it looms before all of us as well, whether the specter be climate change or the collapse of our civilization. Few wish to acknowledge either, though fears of irreversible and catastrophic climate change pervade everyday life like the fear of nuclear holocaust haunted my life from childhood on. But techno-optimism infects all but the most cynical among us and too often cripples our ability to take the steps, intellectual and practical, we will have to take as the world changes under us.
This website records my evolving thoughts on our condition and links you to resources I find useful. Laugh! laughter is imprecindible, immeasurable.
— Michael Foley
Michael Foley is a farmer, writer, educator, and community activist living in Willits, California. His latest book is Farming for the Long Haul, Chelsea Green, 2019.