Arrow-right Camera
The Spokesman-Review Newspaper

The Spokesman-Review Newspaper The Spokesman-Review

Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
Clear Night 59° Clear

Year of Plenty

Wendell Berry’s Better Economy - Part 2

Volunteerism as I understand it, is a way of compensating for economic or social failure. If you have an economy that impoverishes land and people, as now, then decency will try to compensate by various kinds of volunteerism. But the only effective answer to economic destruction is a better economy - an economy that takes proper care of things, as an economy is supposed to do. 

The idea of the current crop of "conservatives" - that government can cater to greed and leave charity to volunteers - is vicious, and it can't work. The "liberal" idea - that the failures of greedy and wasteful economy can be effectively patched by government services and regulations - is also helpless. There is no way to get a good result from an economy that institutionalizes greed as an honorable motive and excuses waste and destruction as "acceptable."    from Conversations With Wendell Berry, page 179

Year of Plenty

The Year of Plenty blog was created by Craig Goodwin in the winter of 2008 to chronicle the experiences of his family as they sought to consume everything local, used, homegrown or homemade. That journey was a wonderful introduction to people and movements in the Spokane area who are seeking the welfare of the community through local foods, farmers markets, community gardens, sustainable transportation, and more fulfilling and just patterns of consumption. In 2009 and beyond the blog will continue to report on these relationships and practices, all through the eyes of a family with young children. Craig manages the Millwood Farmers' Market, is a Master Food Preserver and Pastor at Millwood Presbyterian Church. Craig can be reached at