I don’t know how this happened, but somehow I have a book coming out in April 2016! I wrote it between the hours of 10 pm and 2 am, mostly, after the girls (and my day job) were asleep. It was … Continue reading
Author Archives: Nathanael
A funny thing happened on the way to SynBetaBio
Last week Jim Thomas, of the ETC Group sent out mass email went out suggesting that I was colluding with the synthetic biology industry. He’d seen the agenda of a conference where I’d been invited to speak organized by a … Continue reading
Where to find me
Hey there, thanks for coming all this way, with traffic an everything. It’s been ages since we talked, sorry about that. I’ve been busy, I’m teaching at the Berkeley J-school this fall and I’m writing about food and the environment … Continue reading
Is wild food toxic?
A few people have asked my opinion about this article including Melissa (below), because my book included a thought experiment on vegetable toxicity. The point of that chapter was to demonstrate that, because we know so little about plant chemicals, it’s easy to construct a narrative that makes veggies look very scary.
As always with me, I’m of two minds about this – it’s complicated! This, by the way, is why there’s an asterisk in the title of my book; Basically I think that Jo Robinson is right.* Continue reading
Fluoridation Fails in Portland
The Firehole River is full of pure, naturally occurring fluoride 12 mg/L, a truly dangerous level. Photo by Larry Grant
I have a familiar set of feelings totday, as I go over the reactions to Portland’s voters turning down a measure to add fluoride to their drinking water. On the one hand I’m sorry the measure failed. On the other, I can’t help but feel offended when I hear people sneering about those benighted, anti-scientific wingnuts who appeal to nature and want water that’s and “pure.” Hey, that’s me you’re talking about, and I’m on your side. But the real reason this stings is that this measure lost because fluoridation activists failed to understand and respect people like me. It would be nice to see some humility and soul searching in response to this loss, rather than more of the insolence that brought it about. Continue reading
A couple lovely reviews
Tanya Tolchin of The Lettuce Edge summed up my angle in “All Natural” this way: He is not the conservative child of hippies rejecting how he was raised, but he looks critically at each piece before he decides how he … Continue reading
Bad Internet Diagnosis
I currently have a sore throat. Here’s something I found when I searched the Internet for “sore throat.” Continue reading
Who’s buying that book?
I’m not really a sucker for celebrity news, but I am a huge terrible sucker for news about me. So the fact that this arm belongs to a movie star matters a lot less to me than the fact that it’s holding the book I wrote. Continue reading
Eat organic, live longer young midge
You probably know the confused state of affairs: There are individual studies showing that organic food is nutritionally superior to industrially produced foods , but an analysis of all the evidence available suggests that it’s not. There’s no consensus. Now people are buzzing about a fun little study out of Southern Methodists University that takes on this issue from a new angle. Continue reading
Protecting nature to death
TED just discovered Allan Savory. I hope a lot of people check this out. I learned about him when Michael Pollan lent me his book a few years back. (Image below: Mexico, efore holistic management).
It’s a fascinating read if you want to go beyond the video. (After holistic management: note the hill with the blue line)
Savory starts with his own story as a ecologist managing parks in Africa: “No sooner did we remove the hunting drumbeating people to protect the animals, then the land began to deteriorate.” Continue reading