From a conversation with Owl back in July. My knowledge of homesteading is entirely anecdotal. I’ve never read anything on the subject because practical things are, unfortunately, not among my fixations. I’ll run this by my friend who actually does homesteading for comment.
The idea of deriving homesteading from first principles is more appealing than I’d like to admit.
“How to Succeed at Everything by Having Uninformed but Strong Opinions about Them” <- Does this book exist yet?
Presumably with a more succinct title
One imagines a self-help book with “CONFIDENCE” in bold letters
Principle #1: Home gardening automation is great
That’s really more of a maxim.
Principle #1: Mediate against predictable disasters.
Principle #2: Shorten your supply chains.
Principle #3: Spend money, gradually, to save money, but run tests first
Principle #4: Know what you’re doing. Obsess over best practices.
Principle #5: Make plans and lists, keep them in a specific place, and review them often.
Principle #6: “Culture is what makes life worth living”, and with a tiny amount of searching it’s free too.
Principle #0: It’s all about needs, risks, and costs.
Principle #7: Get the kids to do decorating crafts and projects.
Principle #8: Go to the same church as your neighbors.
Principle #9: Own property, rent tools, feed the local police.
Principle #10: Wives are natural bargainers and scavengers. Encourage this.
*insert thrifty scotswoman joke here*
How was copper wire invented?
Two Scots were fighting over a penny.
Important note: Give wives lists of things to look out for that you’d want or need in the long term, then encourage opportunistic scavenging and haggling with people out there in the world (i.e. people other than yourself).
Principle #11: Keep a corkboard of visual reminders why you’re doing this.
Principle #9 (reprise): Own property, rent tools, feed the police/gangs/mafia. and keep your ammo dry.
Law is neither in the letter nor the spirit, but in the local enforcement.
Principle #12: Location, location, location. Take as long as you need to get it right.
Principle #13: Prepare to be unlucky because you will be.
Principle #7 (reprise): Homeschool or die. Get the kids to do the decorating.
Principle #14: You’re weird and people think you’re weird. Just bring them the food they like and it’ll be okay.
I.e. Include lots of neighborly benevolence in your budget.
Or gardening plans.
Make sure to plan for what each person actually wants, rather than just randomly giving them things you have too much of. It’s like Machiavellianism, but better.
Speaking of, I had a vision of a restaurant homestead.Imagine a restaurant that can claim all the food came from out back. Or even better, pair it with one of those ridiculous communal city gardens. That has to be the most SWPL thing of all time. The only thing more SWPL would be to put it at the end of a Holocaust museum tour.
Two things I forgot to include in the original brainstorm:
Principle #15: Plan for brownouts and generating electricity for food storage and power tools. This isn’t a camping trip, it’s an outpost of civilization.
Principle #16: Plan for some baseline communication technology. What you don’t know about what the government is up to, not to mention local king Raz, will kill you. Or as Robert Greene put it in law 18: ““The world is dangerous and enemies are everywhere — everyone has to protect themselves. A fortress seems the safest. But isolation exposes you to more dangers than it protects you from — it cuts you off from valuable information, it makes you conspicuous and an easy target. Better to circulate among people, find allies and mingle. You are shielded from your enemies by the crowd.” Plus, you might learn that hydroxychloroquine cures that bug that took out half your kids.
I was inspired to go back and collect all this because I’m finally putting this talent for making elaborate plans to better use: to plan out the future ancap Propertarian communal syndicate with the menfolk. This week is pretty full up so next week I’ll do the “ideal world” brainstorm. After that the priorities brainstorm. After that, set goals. After that, brainstorm how to start accomplishing the first goal. Then, make a plan. Will keep track and collaborate on a private Google doc.