Skip to main content

    I have only been writing regularly for a few weeks here on DKos so I'm well aware of why I'm not getting a lot of eyeballs.  This isn't a "Poor Me Why Don't You Read My Stuff"  (PMWDYRMS)?  diary.  It's just my latest thoughts for the day.  Somebody once recommended that the best way to make the Rec list was to keep writing in order to build up a readership.  So I'm just following that advice.  Maybe if I keep writing I will get more recognition and the issues that I care about will get more eyeballs.  I am posting this now so that I might introduce myself to a different group of readers.

                   
Food! Glorious Food! from Oliver

        100_2848

Local Produce

  Anyway, the reasons that I keep writing about food are multiple.  As my profile states I am a former chef.  I got my first glimpse into the importance of food and politics while in culinary school.  It was there that I first read Food Politics by Marion Nestle.  The book was an eye opener.  It covers the ways in which food companies spend their advertising and lobbying dollars.  I am also influenced by the works of Michael Pollan such as In  Defense of Food and The Omnivore's Dilemma.   Another influence has been Eric Schlosser, author of Fast Food Nation. I have also been influenced by Jill Richardson at la vida locavore.

    I know that there are multiple progressive causes represented in this community.  I am also aware that food and food politics aren't generally recognized as a progressive issue.  I respectfully disagree.  I think that food and food politics are at the center of the things that we care about here.  Food politics encompasses immigration, labor, healthcare, nutrition, agriculture, and employment.  These are just a few examples of the reach of food policy in this country.

          100_3039
more local produce

FOOD AND HEALTHCARE

    It is my firm belief that nutrition, along with exercise, forms the basis of a healthy lifestyle.  Don't get me wrong, I am not what I would consider a health nut.  I'm a few pounds overweight and I don't get the kind of exercise I should.  What I mean by nutrition forming the basis of a healthy lifestyle is that fresh food is preferable to packaged food.  Food without additives and preservatives is preferable to potato chips and Twinkies.  A healthy diet can be a bulwark against illness.  Avoiding excess salt, fats, and chemicals can help a person avoid diabetes, heart disease, and a host of other illnesses.

    This affects the larger arena of healthcare because healthier citizens require fewer visits to the doctor, fewer tests and procedures, and fewer hospital stays.  It is my belief that healthcare is a right but I also believe that rights come with responsibilities.  It is our responsibility as citizens to make choices that don't affect others negatively.  Unhealthy lifestyles affect the other people in your insurance pool.  That pool will eventually become larger and larger.  

   

          Evening rainbow
Rainbow over rows of plantings

FOOD AND EDUCATION

    Healthy children learn better, pay more attention in school, and get better grades.  They are able to stay awake in class, they can process information more readily, and they have better recall.  Children simply perform better in school.  I apologize for not linking any studies to this claim.  I have seen these claims made in enough places for me to consider it common knowledge.  My apologies if you disagree.

                  Cesar Chavez
Cesar Chavez

FOOD AND IMMIGRATION POLICY

    A lot has been made here recently about immigration policy.  One factor that I haven't seen mentioned a lot is the role of agriculture in immigration.  Migrant laborers are by and large immigrants, many of them undocumented.  Slaughterhouses are another industry that employs undocumented workers.  One of the reasons these areas attract undocumented workers is that many of the workplaces are unsafe.  Not to paint with too broad of a brush, food manufacturing plants and large-scale farms employ immigrant labor because they can pay lower wages and expect fewer complaints about unsafe working conditions.

    With companies willing to hire illegal immigrants, more will come across our borders.  I am not advocating any specific policies here.  I am not well educated enough on the subject of immigration policy.  I do know that these conditions exist here in the US and that I am appalled by them.  

          Old Fergie
Old Tractor

    So there are just a few of the reasons that I keep writing about food here on this political website.  I believe that food is central to our lives and central to our politics.  Corporate agriculture is just as much a threat to progressive politics as other corporations.  Corporate agriculture makes political contributions, lobbies government on its behalf, and acts in ways that benefit its own interests often to the detriment of individuals.  These corporations touch us directly and indirectly every day in many ways.  This is why I continue to write about food.  Thank you for taking the time to read this.

             
Michael Pollan talks about his Food Rules

           
Eric Schlosser discusses Farm Labor in Florida

Originally posted to Salted and Cured on Mon Apr 26, 2010 at 09:01 PM PDT.

Poll

My favorite pie:

7%5 votes
9%6 votes
13%9 votes
12%8 votes
18%12 votes
4%3 votes
3%2 votes
13%9 votes
16%11 votes

| 65 votes | Vote | Results

EMAIL TO A FRIEND X
Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags

?

More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site