Thursday, September 13, 2007

Beware, I am venting!

What is the difference between unethical and ethical advertising? Unethical advertising uses falsehoods to deceive the public; ethical advertising uses truth to deceive the public. ~Vilhjalmur Stefansson, 1964

Yesterday was a beautiful day. It was warm enough with a nice breeze that quickly cooled you down as you were working. We were working processing four batches of pear honey.

In between I was able to do laundry. It was a great day to dry clothes on the line. I was telling my mother I saw an ad for a “solar clothes dryer” aka clothesline. If you don’t believe me I googled it and found his… Clothesline just sounds so white trash but hey if you put solar dryer in front of it you get to help the world and that makes it okay. Truth to deceive. Basically it is for people with more money than brains.

Advertising may be described as the science of arresting the human intelligence long enough to get money from it. ~Stephen Butler Leacock, quoted in Michael Jackman, Crown's Book of Political Quotations, 1982

I read blogs where they are cooking for the one local summer. It is not a solution it is a quick 10 week feel good. Yes it supports local farmers but what are you doing the other 42 weeks out of the year?

Interweave Knit just had a bunch of articles on “organic” yarn and even explains why it costs more. Patternworks magazine jumped on the bandwagon offering “eco-friendly” yarns. Lion brand magazine states “go ahead, knit or crochet locally, but think globally. It can do a world of good” All these wonderful words recycled, renewable, organic are being put on everything and the price is higher. Recycled yarn sounds so much classier than used, secondhand or Sally’s. Now explain to me why it costs more if it is recycled, and hasn't wool, mohair and angora been a renewable fiber all along?

I guess my problem with all this is that $120 for a clothesline instead of $20-30 isn’t going to save the planet. It will make you work longer and be away from your family longer to pay for it but that is all.
Making a separate trip to the farmer’s market once a week after they have already been to the grocery store helps the local farmer but is not going to save the planet especially if you drove out of your way to get there. Buying wool stamped organic is a farce, it makes money but that’s it. People need to do real research…find out that sheep are not killed to get their wool or who decides what is and is not organic or how exactly is that natural fiber made.

I am extremely lucky. I am able to grow my own vegetables and meat. My chickens and ducks give me eggs. My sheep, angora goat and rabbit give me fiber. I don’t use pesticides on my garden unless the problem becomes too large to control with handpicking. If it comes to losing the whole crop vs spraying with something to stop that…I am going to spray. I hang my clothes to dry. Then I balance that with the fact that I don’t have time to make my own salt or grind my own wheat. I refuse to drive 50+ miles to JC Penney, Sears etc. to avoid Wal-mart that is only 25 miles away. I am not willing to go without toilet paper for a year or electricity. I love my indoor plumbing and taking hot showers after a long day in the garden. I could do without my TV but not my internet. I do these things because we have always done it this way not because it is the "in" thing. I do what I can, but refuse to spend extra cash to easy the pain of not being able to do it all. Local is great, natural is great, wanting to save the planet or make less of an impact on it is great but paying more isn’t. Research before you spend the $$$, realize you may be just lining someone’s pocket instead of making a difference. Are they promoting this to sell their product for more money? Is there a book deal in there somewhere?

So remember…. ”It used to be that people needed products to survive. Now products need people to survive.” ~Nicholas Johnson


finnsheep said...

You go, girl!!!! Everything you say is right on!

Liberty's Yarn said...

This is something that I am struggling with also. I do what I can, and I hate it when the hummer driving celebs tell me that I need to do more. Its tough when I look at my kids, I worry that its not enough.

I actually just started a little blog brainstorming crafty fun ways to educate and make a difference. I would love to hear what you think.