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The Austerity Kitchen
By Christine Baumgarthuber
Where the alimentary is elementary.
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Hunger as an Instrument of Social Control

Under conditions of capitalism, it may be that you are what you don’t eat

Days at the Factories 8

This month will see more than half a million adults lose their Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits. Lower jobless numbers have prompted the federal government to discontinue waivers that states need in order to extend this aid to long-term unemployed. In Pennsylvania and Arizona, for example, childless, able-bodied people aged 18 to 49 will now get a mere three months’ assistance. In Alabama and elsewhere in the South, hard-luck cases may expect three weeks’ help every three years. After that, nothing. The idea is, apparently, that if you can’t lock down one of the part-time, low-wage jobs the current economic “recovery” has created, you’d do well simply to starve.

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Bread and Marginalism

The End of a Great Speculator

“Without food, clothing and shelter, man would most certainly die; no shadow of doubt about it. And since no service can be rendered to man that is more valuable than to prevent him from dying, is it possible, as a matter of actual fact, for any kind of labor to be worthy of greater compensation than that which is devoted to the production of food, clothing and shelter? If you were without all these things and had been without them even two weeks, is there any thing on this earth for which you would give more, even if you had all the wealth of Wall street, than something to eat, something to wear and a place to sleep?” –From Socialism Made Plain: Why the Few are Rich and the Many Poor (1904)


Cooperative Kitchens of Yesteryear

Our Famous Women 11

Socialism in one country may be a difficult undertaking, but socialism in many American country towns was as easy as pie — and just as appetizing

My schedule having become busier, making dinner is now a chore. Before, I’d found a certain serenity in chopping carrots and slicing tomatoes after a day of brainwork. Now, vegetables oppress me, especially as my CSA share has been unusually full of late. Against them I mobilize food processor and pressure cooker. Yet these implements must be hauled from the cupboard, assembled, disassembled, and cleaned. Then there’s the cooking, eating, and cleaning up.

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