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Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review June 13, 2008 / 10 Sivan 5768

Prince Charles, Organic Conservatism Icon

By Michael Gerson


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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | TETBURY, England — At Highgrove House, Prince Charles's country estate, the wild minks are once again eating the large koi in the ornamental pond. But the plentiful birds, often fed by the prince's own hand, are keeping the snails on the hostas under control. These are among the trials and triumphs of modern royalty.


The Highgrove gardens are a marvel of this very British art. In the gnarled wildness of an area called the Stumpery, among the moss-clogged foundations, amid cozy clearings and wildflower fields and tumbled walls of discarded cathedral carvings, order is coaxed by craft, not imposed by pesticides.


At the Prince of Wales's nearby organic farm, rare breeds of British cattle graze on grass instead of the enriched feeds that would increase their size and shorten their lives. The farm manager, greeted by the cows like an old friend, explains his preference for homeopathic veterinary remedies and warns about the overuse of antibiotics. Vegetable and grain fields are renewed by crop rotation instead of nitrogen-based fertilizers, which change the nature of the soil and reduce the immunities of some plants.


Few places on earth more distinctly bear the mark of a single personality than this green and pleasant corner of the Cotswolds. When Prince Charles began his organic experimentations two decades ago, he was abused as a crank — the battiest of the royals. Now the question arises: Is such battiness the future of the world?


Charles, it turns out, was a pioneer in a field that now includes Whole Foods and organic sections at every grocery store. (He sells his own brand of organic products called Duchy Originals; the oat biscuits are particularly tasty.) Many experts now argue that small-scale, sustainable agriculture, not a chemical or genetic green revolution, is the key to food security in developing countries. The surging price of oil and natural gas has raised concerns about nitrogen fertilizers — a fuel-intensive product that has made the global food supply dependent on the energy industry.


I admit that some elements of the organic worldview make me uncomfortable — its occasionally pharisaical intensity, the endless lists of symbolic and impractical "steps I can take to save the planet," the nearly universal mania with bird watching (I refuse to get excited about all the indistinguishable little brown ones).


But in the fidgety busyness of modern life, this intensity has a spiritual cause. Indifference to nature is a kind of blindness and deadness and poverty. And the rediscovery of the physical world leads us toward harmonies beyond it. Wrote the poet Wendell Berry:


I come into the peace of wild things
who do not tax their lives with forethought
of grief. I come into the presence of still water.
And I feel above me the day-blind stars
waiting with their light. For a time
I rest in the grace of the world, and am free.


The organic worldview also has political consequences. Out of a justified fear of the inherent irresponsibility of journalists, the prince's conversation with me was not on the record. But it is safe to say that he thoughtfully defends an older, small "c" conservatism: a suspicion of unbounded technology, consumerism and agribusiness; a disdain for the kind of cinder-block architecture that dehumanizes those it shelters. A conservatism of place, of tradition, of the land, which honors the awesome givenness of both nature and human nature.


There is a deep and neglected connection between conservation and conservatism. It has often been a scientifically minded liberalism that has proposed the planning of society and the manipulation of nature. "In many important respects," observes the impossibly bright Yuval Levin, "environmentalism is deeply conservative. . . . The movement seeks to preserve a given balance which we did not create, are not capable of fully understanding, and should not delude ourselves into imagining we can much improve — in other words, its attitude toward nature is much like the attitude of conservatism toward society."


According to traditional conservatism, politicians should be like Highgrove's British gardeners, clipping and pruning society to reveal inner harmonies not always evident on the surface — instead of uprooting and replanting in, say, the severe order of a French formal garden. And there is every reason to apply this same conservative philosophy to the physical environment as well.


Depending on your view of climate science and agriculture, this organic conservatism may be increasingly urgent. But there is little doubt it would allow us to rest more easily in the grace of the world.


Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.

Comment on Michael Gerson's column by clicking here.



Previously:


06/11/08: No longer a bankrupt political joke but still overshadowed
04/23/08: McCain's anger management
04/10/08: A Country for Old Men
03/06/08: Does the America Need a Hug?
03/06/08: Obama's First 100 Days
02/29/08: Words Aren't Cheap
02/22/08: He Said, They Said
02/20/08: Dying silently in Zimbabwe
02/15/08: Hillary's Unappealing Path
02/13/08: NATO's Afghan Stumbles
02/08/08: Why McCain Endures
02/06/08: One surge that led to another
02/01/08: In North Korea, Process Over Progress
01/30/08: Compassionate to the end


© 2008, WPWG

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