‘I wanted to physically make the world a better place,’ Janes said. With his family’s help, he bought 40 acres of forested land on Denman Island. It came with two trailers. Janes and a girlfriend he’s no longer with moved into one, and promptly sold the other — ‘a big, ugly, white vinyl doublewide,’ he said. They planted a vegetable garden and got some chickens. Self-sufficiency ‘was definitely an ideal,’ Janes explained, ‘but we were doing everything we could’ to achieve it.
I realized in the ”60s and 70s that self-sufficiency is a DIRECTION. You never will get there, even remotely. In those years we were raising a lot of our own food, and when I planted some wheat and went through all the steps to get it from the field to flour for bread (unlike potatoes or corn, which you eat just the way it comes out of the ground), I saw that self sufficiency is a myth. BUT that’s no reason to give up. The idea is to become as self-sufficient as possible. AND, we weren’t really doing it to make the world a better place. We did it because whatever we could produce was better and cheaper and more tuned in than what we could buy. Like building one’s own house. AND in doing that, it turns out that it IS better for the world.