Thursday, May 28, 2009
The farmer has no place in Society as it is willed that way by other farmers!
For those who read my musings, you will notice that I take a very different view to farming than is generally accepted. I am attempting to understand current practices of farming, as well as the modus operandi used to keep farming at this level. I am moreover looking forward to coming out with a plan that I believe will increase the total agricultural output of Sri Lanka with no more inputs that we currently use, and also with the future in mind where there are no people in villages to farm, we must use much more mechanized and automated methods of farming, along with efforts and methods to increase efficiency and productivity which will lead to greater output, lower prices, but increased incomes to the farmers as well. This win win situation is possible, it just needs an overhaul of the mindset.
What motivates me today in this writing is the gross injustice that has been meted out to me this week, where once the locals realized I was going on my own to plant what I liked on all my land, and I was not relying on the water to be supplied, but instead ready to pump, they determined that I could not pump for all the land, but only for 65%. I cannot see the logic, but they said that even the water on the river is used by farmers down stream to farm their land, and that I would be preventing them from using the water. It is a hypothetical assumption, where I believe if one is going to the extent of spending ones own money rather that getting it free as the farmers do, to plant, I would be extremely cautious of wasting water. I would only use the water necessary to me.
I did not want to get into the argument which I have had before of the fact that even in the best of times, I have had to pump, as other farmers up the line take their entitlement of water just to let it flow down the river, instead of allowing me to have it, and I then have to pump it back up from the river to irrigate my land. This is the agricultural mentality of a place that had been established in days gone by as agricultural villages, where I contend few of the farmers are engaged in real agriculture.
I call real agriculture, the planting of excess for sale, as most of these people down to small plots of land, being designated by the government as farmers, only grow enough paddy to feed the families and have alternative sources of income as well.
It is so ironic that those who rule us are now talking about the new war of development, when those who want to develop themselves are prevented from doing so. So it is just the rules that need to change, which allow more freedom for the individual to improve themselves, free from any restrictions. It’s the restrictions stupid, that are wrong in Sri Lanka. These restrictions don’t apply to the ruling classes, so it is the average Joe who suffers. Abolish discriminatory restrictions on personal liberties, and hey presto we will have a safe and vibrant society. The trouble is, it is just those very same restrictions that give the government the control it has over people’s lives, which if they were not there, would actually make government in Sri Lanka irrelevant. Now that would be something we could all look forward to!
Lets therefore start with a blank sheet, realizing we are in 2009 with a shortage of labor.