Michael Pollan talks turn controversial
Bill Lueders on Thursday 09/24/2009
As quoted in Isthmus' cover story last week, author Michael Pollan resents accusations that he's blaming farmers for the nation's flawed food policies: "That's just rhetoric. I'm blaming the system. I'm blaming a set of incentives. A system in which many farmers really feel trapped."
Last Thursday the State Journal ran a letter to the editor headlined "Beware of Pollan's Attack on Farmers." In fact, the published letter never accuses Pollan of attacking farmers; it merely defends farmers while casting aspersions on Pollan's unspecified "agenda."
State Journal editorial page editor Scott Milfred says the letter was shortened from the original and given a head that fit the writer's point: "I don't think the headline was a stretch."
Pollan, now in Madison for a series of events (Sept. 24 at 7 p.m. at the Kohl Center, Sept. 25 at 3:30 p.m. at the Wisconsin Union Theater, Sept. 26 at 10 a.m. on the Capitol Square), disagrees: "The headline on that letter is really unfair, to the writer and to me. Someone's trying to stir the pot, obviously. This is the Farm Bureau line and they're parroting it." Read More
It’s quite interesting that after deliberately attacking farmers and ranchers that now Pollan feels as though he is being picked on. The reason people are concerned about what he is saying is that his policies would lead to a hungry world. Everyone would love to slow their lives down, including how their food is grown, but unfortunately that is tough to do. When Pollan comes up with an idea that doesn’t recklessly endanger our ability to feed ourselves, I will be more than happy to listen. Until then, America’s farming families will continue feeding and clothing a hungry nation.