The imperialists thought they had discovered a philosopher’s stone in Borlaug’s wheat and rice hybrids. Now every poor person could enjoy three square meals a day and forsake the need to take up arms.
When Norman Borlaug, the father of the Green Revolution, died last Monday at the age of 95, I could not help but wonder if special issues of the Nation Magazine and the Monthly Review, the authoritative voices of American liberalism and radicalism respectively, might have caused the old buzzard to croak. The September 21 issue of the Nation was titled “Food for All” and took on the myths of the Green Revolution, just as does the July-August issue of Monthly Review. The MR has the added distinction of being co-edited by Fred Magdoff, Harry’s son, who is one of the leading Marxist experts on sustainable agriculture.
Borlaug was very clear about his political goals, as were his acolytes in the bourgeois press. Take, for example, the moniker Green Revolution. The term was a conscious alternative to the Red Revolutions that were driven by a desire…
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