(In which I ramble a bit.)
This is obviously the most important story in the world right now, which is why the major networks won’t be picking it up for a couple of months. (I saw Gangnam Style on Fox News last night.)
Indeed, the work that Sundrop Farms, as they call themselves, are doing in South Australia, and just starting up in Qatar, is beyond the experimental stage. They appear to have pulled off the ultimate something-from-nothing agricultural feat – using the sun to desalinate seawater for irrigation and to heat and cool greenhouses as required, and thence cheaply grow high-quality, pesticide-free vegetables year-round in commercial quantities.
So far, the company has grown tomatoes, peppers and cucumbers by the tonne, but the same, proven technology is now almost ready to be extended to magic out, as if from thin air, unlimited quantities of many more crops – and even protein foods such as fish and chicken – but still using no fresh water and close to zero fossil fuels. Salty seawater, it hardly needs explaining, is free in every way and abundant – rather too abundant these days, as our ice caps melt away.
So well has Sundrop’s 18-month project worked that investors and supermarket chains have lately been scurrying down to Port Augusta, making it hard to get a room in its few motels, or a table at the curry restaurant in the local pub. Academic agriculturalists, mainstream politicians and green activists are falling over each other to champion Sundrop. And the company’s scientists, entrepreneurs and investors are about to start building an £8m, 20-acre greenhouse – 40 times bigger than the current one – which will produce 2.8m kg of tomatoes and 1.2m kg of peppers a year for supermarkets now clamouring for an exclusive contract.
I’m getting a little concerned that we’re kinda close to the agenda item marked “Overpopulation”. Last night I was explaining to my dad that if I were in charge of reducing global population by the initial 2/3, I would use starvation as my tool (a choice with historical support). We’re still an agricultural global society because it’s the only way to support the population we have.
Somewhere near 90% of the world’s crops are owned by one corporation, and (purely speculating here) I’m going to guess that corporation owns at least 99% percent of the patents on crop DNA. This means, naturally, that it’s technically illegal for you to sell private produce. But Monsanto doesn’t care about your local farmers market. They’re only concerned about commercial-level farmers selling patented strains of corn for big bucks. This doesn’t come up much, because most farmers belong to validative collectives of farmers, and they render unto Caesar…
Now let’s pretend as an absurd example that Monsanto decides to stop selling food, citing “economic hardship” or some bullshit. It’s their legal right, after all. Specialized labor in urban areas would riot and start wars, suburban people would hoard and grow food, and poor rural people would continue doing what rural people do to shore up their low incomes (grow, hunt, fish). So as an illuminatus, I would dispatch my military to quell the riots, dispatch my law enforcement (well-fed enforcement, wink wink) to deal with the patent violators in the rural areas…and I make my 2/3 quota easy-peasy. Get the actuaries at Visa to keep track of the parallel economies so you can deal with them later.
Reality tends to be a longer, drawn-out form of these absurdist, schizophrenic fantasies that we dream up. But they are still useful mental tools because you can look for the small steps we’re taking in the insane direction. That’s how evil works: small, imperceptible innurances. Evil is patient. And then you’re doing things that seem completely normal to you and you can’t figure out why people in other cultures are looking at you like that. It’s not like they’re even people yet. Well, it gets legally fuzzy around the third trimester. Check your state laws to see what’s considered normal where you are.
Back on the topic of the article, Tex alludes that can’t let ordinary people have power over the food supply:
Sounds incredible so of course the bureaucrats who run Australia are not having any of it.
That’s how you can be sure that Sundrop’s on to something with this agricultural method. Watch for them to be fined for every loose screw on every engine of every tractor.
It’s probably worth mentioning that the former Goldman-Sachs now-Sundrop-CEO (pictured) is a huge melonhead (big surprise). Odds on the 62-year-old British lighting engineer being an introverted, charismatic-following MT. The rest of the story is quite predictable, given my rather uncommon education. Poor schmuck.