'Slash and Burn is a method of farming that involves clearing land by destroying and burning all the trees and plants on it, farming there for a short time, and then moving on to farm a new piece of land.  Traditional slash and burn farming methods have exhausted the soil.'

I seem to be having the same conversation over and over again at the moment.  Along the lines of the lunatics having taken over the asylum.  Sound familiar?  A political elite preach death and dis-ease, their corporate stasi raid my students homes at dawn and spray their eyes with poison, they cut libraries and hospitals whilst cutting their friends in on tax deals and bonuses.  They merrily sign off on the rape and pillage of g*d's green earth for paper money.  They appear to finance these actions with other money I have paid in taxes to them, so now I am culpable.  I'm not making this up - I wish it was hyperbole, but its more like Babylon.  Fear grips the heart, the viddy screen preaches the selfish gene and the rule of capital like the one and only true religion, and its as if Hope has been run out of town, head down, by a gang of thieves with the combined social skills of Prince Phillip, Alan Sugar and Baron Harkonnen (ok, that might be hyperbole).  In fact we're to pretend Hope never existed, to disavow it altogether, these are terrible gloomy times and we'll 'all' just have to bite down.  A new breed of anxiety to replace the old news of our disasterous Crusade in the middle east - In Store now, a story about austerity, with its own baddies and goodies, ugly winners and beautiful losers.  ''If you want a vision of the future Winston, imagine a boot stamping on a human face, forever!''

To want a different future is just naive, right? 

remember how death smells, and how wrong that is, instinctively

This is the real-politic of desperate, greedy men with nothing left to offer, but I do believe the tide is turning.  No one believes you, snake oil salesmen, peddlers of scorched earth and permanent war - your game is up!  You have no traction, no depth, you exist on the surface only.  And its you that are bankrupt, not us.  In London and Cumbria, in the Highlands and Norfolk and Cairo, everywhere people are still looking for alternatives to your fools gold, and out of this fire comes fresh ideas, and new stories.  About how to change things, how best to organise ourselves and what might constitute value in a civilised society.  Maybe one day we might aspire to that!  These are not so called extremists, but a previously silent majority radicalised by opposition to greed.  This is not party political (please ignore the smoke and mirrors, and stop jerking that knee), its just a question of time.  Time, of course, is relative, and waiting for others to sort it out can be frustrating.  I expect it'll be a long haul, we might as well pitch in.

I need to remember only 2 things: fear is the mindkiller, and we are the government.

This land is your land,
This land is my land,
From the coast of Cornwall,
To the Scottish Highlands.
From the sacred forests,
To the holy islands,
This land was made for you and me.

As I walked out through
The homeless counties,
The traffic raging,
Raging all around me.
I closed my eyes and,
Dreamed how it could be,
This land was made for you and me.

So I am going,
No one can stop me,
Where the wild flowers growing,
Clean rivers flowing.
Fresh winds are blowing,
And the tall trees whispering,
This land was made for you and me.

I saw a sign there,
When I was walking,
And on the sign it,
Said "No Trespassing".
But on the other side,
It didn't say nothing,
This side was made for you and me.

As the clouds went rolling,
And the church bells ringing,
I heard the songs that,
The birds were singing.
As night came falling,
They went on calling,
This land was made for you and me.

From the teaming city,
I made my escape,
To find my place in,
The mystic landscape.
I'm not the first here,
Nor am I the last here,
This land was made for you and me.

'This land is your land' (traditional/Woody Guthrie, arr Billy Bragg)

Read something:
Andy H on stewardship
John on turbine parks
Andy W on forests 
Robin on trust
False Economy

Do something: 
Save our Forests
The JMT Wild Land campaign
Alan's plans - watch this space!
UK Uncut