Dear Mother: June/July 2009

Letters to the editor about NAIS, biochar, electric lawn mowers, creating a sustainable future, a solar revolution and more.

| June/July 2009

  • Harris’ Hawk
    Readers write in that dogs and turkeys can be good guards against predators such as hawks.
  • curving road
    Can we navigate the curves the future has in store for us?
  • Renewable energy conference
    While Planning for a Solar Revolution provides many "brilliant" ideas for the future of U.S. energy use, Tripp Tibbetts argues that new energy plans alone simply aren't enough.
  • Neuton electric mower
    Candice Chatfield loves her electric mower, and writes "I can’t see any reason for anyone to use a gas mower for a small to medium lawn."
  • Biochar
    If your city doesn't permit open burning, check the fire pits at the local campground for biochar.
  • Pellet stove
    Reader Todd Millions warns that when cleaning a pellet stove with a vacuum, you should wait about a week after the last use for safety.
  • Red cabbage
    Roger Doiron's article Count on Cabbage inspired Rob Kenneway to revisit his mother's recipe for stuffed cabbage.

  • Harris’ Hawk
  • curving road
  • Renewable energy conference
  • Neuton electric mower
  • Biochar
  • Pellet stove
  • Red cabbage

Denis Hayes for President

I’ve always enjoyed Mother Earth News for the great gardening articles, but your recent discussions of global environmental issues have been so concise and well-written that I’m keeping your magazine in my office to help me articulate opinions and vision with my colleagues and clients. In particular, Planning for a Sustainable Human Future by Bryan Welch and A Plan for the Solar Revolution by Denis Hayes are must-reads for all.

Welch’s analogy of visualizing success in completing a difficult physical challenge is effective and relevant in relation to our environmental challenges. His observations regarding human population balance present a compassionate and simple necessity. And Hayes lays out such a clear and comprehensive strategy for renewable energy that he should be our president.

Thank you for keeping the quality of discussion at this level.

Mike Bower
Sedona, Arizona

Stop the Political Nonsense

I have been reading Mother Earth News for as long as I have been able to read. I like the content and have enjoyed your magazine. However, since “green” has become a political movement, and those who I would term communists or die-hard socialists have taken the nonexistent, scientifically disproved global warming crisis and used it to control us, I have started to skip articles and at times the whole magazine. Please hear my plea. The political nonsense should be left out of my Mother Earth News.

Mike Westmoreland
7/3/2009 11:13:49 AM

I was a reader of M.E.N. for more than twenty years until the mid nineties. Yesterday I picked my first issue since then and was really surprised when I started reading. What has happened to the Mother that took time to teach rural people how to exist on the basics of life using their ingenuity and sweat. You used to offer articles of the DIY nature that dealt with everyday life, and were focused on helping folks deal with the environment in a conservative and constructive manner. What I have seen in this issue is focused on "green" living with political overtones. In a time when most of America is suffering from an ecomomic crunch, I would thought that the old style Mother would have been a very welcome and helpful part of the average individuals life. Please excuse the attitude, I am just in shock and would really like to see a return to the old values that Mother Earth News was famous for. (Do I really need to see ads for $4-8,000 lawnmowers, or how to use goats and fryers for lawn control) Thank you for listening, Mike

Robert Sorel
6/19/2009 9:02:29 AM

I've been reading Mother since the first issue, which I still retain somewhere. There was a period years ago, following a change of ownership, that the quality of the magazine was greatly diminished in an attempt to be hip. I'm very happy that Mother has returned to her roots, which are essentially sustainability and living a higher quality life. Though I love reading about growing better tomatoes etc., it's also imperative that we discuss issues such as population, pollution, plant patents, and climate change. These issues and other "touchy" subjects may be unpleasant to think about, let alone discuss, but we must have an open dialogue in which we might arrive at informed conclusions. These issues are at the forefront of our ability to live the lifestyle that I believe, the majority of Mother's readers hope to achieve. It is after all, right in the name; "Mother Earth News". It is disappointing to read of subscribers canceling their subscription due to subjects they would rather avoid. Please don't allow yourselves to be deterred in your attempts to inform us on issues that will effect our future. Trust that most readers understand that what has been lacking, and has brought us into environmental crisis, is intelligent dialogue. This reader is offering his support by converting my subscription to automatic renewal. I hope that similarly minded readers will respond in like manner.

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