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Biotechnology: Disrupting the Global Asset Classes of National Security
by Jim Lane (BiofuelsDigest) ... For any society, an even more perfect class of technology assets would allow us to move in either direction — perfect convertibility. When energy prices are low and supply is replete, but food prices are high because supply is constrained, you’d like to be able to shift energy assets to food production.
It’s also liberating to be freed in a more obvious way from shackled, ossified thinking about land use. US power stems to a great extent from the nation’s industrial output in the Second World War. It’s role as the Arsenal of Democracy is what gave the US a seat at the first table of world power — and at the heart of that Arsenal was the idea that industrial assets used to make consumer goods in peacetime could be swiftly converted to armament production in wartime.
Acreage, in its own way then, is a form of industrial capacity. Thinking that you can and should only make, say, lettuce, on this acreage. As opposed to making leather, meat, fuel, chemicals, fertilizers, construction materials, animal feed, plastics or whatever — that’s thinking that would have made no sense at all to the pioneers who established America and conquered the frontier. They made virtually everything on the farm and in the home — food, fuel, lubricants, greases, fibers, ropes, saddles, fertilizers and more. They grew it back then, because for a long time it was the only way, and for a long time after there was another way, it was still the most affordable, or the most practical way.
The American pioneer farm grew cash crops, feed, food and more. Typically, if there was corn-growing on many farms, it was to provide feed for the pigs, and pigs were then shipped for the market. They understood convertibility. If they had too much meat and leather and not enough building materials, they grew more wood. Making high prices on wheat — grow more food. READ MORE