[nafex] Re: Declining memberships

Kieran or Donna redherring at tnaccess.com
Fri Jul 13 00:50:13 EDT 2001


I read an article that said something I have tried to say about a major
change in American society.  The article said there is a money economy in
America which all the economists worship and pray over and and discuss and
predict.  However, America has another, non monetary economies, and this one
is about bankrupt.  This is the family and community economy.  This other
economy was mostly the reserve of women, and women now are all gone to work
to pay for all these new fangled items Americans are stupid enough to be
brainwashed into thinking they can't live without.  (I type this on one of
several computers bought and discarded by my parents, who are slaves to
their possessions.)   Without the labor of women in running these economies,
they decline.  Not only did their own labor go into these economies, but
they took pressure off the men so they could do THEIR community and family
duties.
    The money economy, and all those who benefit from it (governments and
international corporations) do not want a return to the past.  Think about
it.  If a woman grows a bushel of beans, (beans are a heck of a lot quicker
and easier, guys, I am still waiting for my first bushel of apples) and her
family eats them and gives some away, no money got spent at the local
grocery store for those meals.  In the thinking of the money economy, she
has made the community poorer by not spending money.  Yet, she still has her
money to spend, she just hasn't spent it yet. (A terrible terrible crime I
think these days, totally irresponsible and liable to bring down the
economy.  I can't imagine what I did to our local economy when my kids were
young and I taught them to darn socks)  If she works at a job and pays for
daycare and nice clothes for work and takes her kids to a fast food joint,
then more money changes hands, the GNP goes up, and we all get richer.
Reminds me of a story in the old Mother Earth News, this is true, about a
couple who tried and tried to save money to move to the country.  Finally
they looked at their budget, added up costs of the wife's car, clothes, dry
cleaning bills. cost of eating out, etc, and figured out her job cost more
than it paid.  She quit her job, sold the car, and suddenly they had money
in their pockets.  But still the savings mounted too slowly.  So they looked
at their budget again, how much he made, how much it cost to live in the
city, and decided it wasn't working.  He quit his job, they moved to the
country, rented an old house, he got a job as a school bus driver, and they
had more money than they ever had.
    Here in our area, we had the Tennessee Alternative Growers association
for nearly 20 years.  It was started with a grant I hear, and had some of
the same infighting that Fluff describes in NAFEX.  Some friends who came up
form Atlanta for meetings said that all other groups of any sort they had
been in were just 9-5 Americans addicted to the outdoors and exercise.  They
said TAGA members were different.  We looked closer and realised most
members were self employed.  A curious fact was that we hardly had anyone
over 50 years old, though some are oldr now.  We only met twice a year, but
those were the biggest events of the year for us.  TAGA has lost it's way,
due to one mover and shaker who decided to hold commmercial garden tours and
lectures on his farm, while the other has had health problems.  But I think
after a year's hiatus it is about to get going again.
    As for the Bunny's comments about NAFEX being a trifle dead in the
water, I have noted that we are an amazing bunch of anarchists.  Not like
SSE which is run from the top down and actually has some RULES and a paid
staff.  Our board of directors I assume is run by people who like to run
things, which usually means nitpicking controlling types, (SJ's for Meyers
Briggs lovers) and I don't think most NAFEXers are suited for that.  I am
serious when I say I have yet to find a "normal" NAFEX member. Just think of
it, here this organization has been all this time, and it's SSE that's doing
the preservation orchard.  I don't know if NAFEX can be "fixed" if it
continues to consist of a bunch of people who get a kick out of grafting and
talking about fruit trees, ie, a bunch of undisciplined ADD and Asperger's
syndrome type fanatics. We're hopeless.  And yes, I am speaking for myself,
but I am including lots of NAFEXers I know.  You may say, oh but we have
these doctors and professional people in NAFEX.  I reply, they have
secretaries (SJ types) to run their businesses.  Donna


 

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