Remembering Norman B.

I’m a road weary fellow this evening, but I didn’t want to let the day go by without drawing at least a little attention to my hero Norman Borlaug, who died three years ago today. We humans are all the poorer for his passing. Read more about him here.

6 thoughts on “Remembering Norman B.”

  1. Thanks for the note Joe. It is always nice to be reminded of the human beings that have made a positive impact on our world. These days we are mostly reminded of the opposite. Yay for Norman B.!


    1. Very true, Eva. It is always nice to be reminded of all the good people can do. Especially these days.


      – Joe

  2. Wow, Joe, that was really informative. Thanks for sharing! It is difficult to understand the vast ways that the world has changed since the 1960s – and that little blurb definitely illuminated a part of world history that we don’t talk about much.

    So when are you going to talk about the political side of starvation worldwide? Or perhaps the whole issue of clean water? Ah, perhaps another time when we meet face to face.

    On a somewhat related note – as a purveyor of history and science, have you ever listened to RadioLab on NPR? I highly recommend it, especially the latest episode about zoos.

    1. Hey Derek!

      Indeed I originally intended that, then remembered that I want Joe Pastry to be a mostly happy place free of the politics that populate most blogs. This discussion will probably have to wait for our first three-martini lunch.

      But yes, I do catch RadioLab when I can. The last thing I heard was something about ants, I think.

      Cheers and thanks,

      – Joe

  3. I’d never heard of this guy before now! What a foodie, eh? Or..maybe I’m not? Whenever the latest foodie trends regarding fresh, local and organic start to sound like the new testament of Christ, I start to think about canned peas. I mean, the things and the processes that have helped feed the masses that we scoff at these days, were a like a godsend when they were first brought to light. I do appreciate the seasonal, fresh and local whenever I can get it reasonably priced, but there’s something to be said for a simple can of peas (or orange juice) in the middle of January in North Dakota..or where and when ever fresh is not available or even grown, that makes me sad that more people don’t give these things their due. So..thanks for paying respect to one who changed the world. Mass producers are not the enemy!

    1. Amen, Susan. I beat this drum probably too much, but we modern Westerners have no concept of how spoiled we are when it comes to food. It wasn’t long ago at all that people were genuinely worried about food shortages on a global scale. Nitrogen fertilizers and dwarf wheat are what averted mass famine and the wars that typically accompany them. The advances that some of the more virtuous foodies now disdain are responsible for averting global calamity. This is not to say we shouldn’t enjoy the (literal) fruits of the local and seasonal movement, however we need to recognize that they’re less a “reversion” to simpler time than they are the cherry on the top of the industrial agricultural parfait. A luxury that’s only made possible by the total food security that our modern system provides us.

      Thanks for the soap box opportunity! 😉

      – Joe

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