Further Reading


The Stanton Peele Addiction Website, July 5, 2000

Eliminate Bad Crops — Rent Hell

Stanton Peele


Call have come for eliminating cultivation of grains grown for booze and beer, and grapes for wine as well, in order to free land to produce valuable foodstuffs.

Do keep in mind that we will have an increase in arable acreage shortly, since Pino Arlacchi, executive director of the United Nations Drug Control Programme (UNDCP), has vowed the global elimination of opium and coca cultivation in the next decade. He actually made the vow in October of 1998, when he said "This year we have already had a decline in drugs production in Afghanistan, Peru and Bolivia and stability in Colombia." We must be half way there by now!

As I mulled over the great suggestion to get rid of wasted crops, it occurred to me that there is way further we can go. What about all that land devoted to tobacco?!! And I hardly think that the land used for coffee cultivation is justified relative to the possibility of growing useful crops on this acreage. Then there are the wide variety of teas, aromatic and caffeinated, which are used primarily as drugs of stimulation and relaxation.

And how necessary really is cacao cultivation (for chocolate) — sure, it has some food value, but it's really a frivolous crop when compared to rice, beans, good grains (for bread), fruits, and vegetables.

Even sugar — I mean, we need tons for soft drinks and candy bars, not to mention the sweeteners used for coffee, tea, and mixed alcoholic drinks? Not!

When this idea occurred to me, I got so excited that I got out a giant agricultural atlas which outlines crops grown around the world. I then carefully relabeled all the areas where bad crops are grown (licit and illicit) with good crops that could be grown in these places instead. For those who would like to have such a valuable resource (just send me $150 for each such atlas with your address).

Plus, think of all the libraries that could be built where bars now stand, and health clubs where there are ice creams stores, and day care centers in places now occupied by Starbucks outlets . . . and, and — excuse me, I'm going to redraw some real estate maps of New York City . . . .

Do remember the immortal words of former professional baseball player turned preacher, Billy Sunday (no, the following is not satirical; these words were actually spoken on a national radio hook up on the eve of national Prohibition in the U.S.):

The reign of tears is over. The slums will soon be a memory. We will turn our prisons into factories and our jails into storehouses and corncribs. Men will walk upright now, women will smile and the children will laugh. Hell will forever be rent!