Farming the mailbox

Quite a few midsize forests have been leveled to furnish the paper for writings on Jamestown 70, the Yale Law School faculty/student exploration of the politics of a progressive take-over of a small state to demonstrate how brilliantly the brightest-among-us would govern if given a chance.

Like the original Jamestown settlers-outsiders from a higher civilization landing in A.D. 1607 amongst the indigenous aborigines to improve them, whether they wanted improvement or not-the A.D. 1970 designers intended-as the late Barbara Olson, a victim of the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, phrased it in "Hell to Pay"- for "...Those with a heightened consciousness to migrate to a safer place...to create their own realities...in such places as Vermont..." and make the Jamestown 70 proposal less of a theoretical and more of a down-to-earth approach to radical federalism.

Read it for yourself on pp. 61-62 of Olson's Hillary Clinton biography. Debate has continued ever since on the subsequent demographic revolution in Vermont.

Was it as organized, as Olson argues, or simply the sum of tens of thousands of babyboomer decisions to reject their parents' suburbia to "do their own thing" in a then-more-rural environment?

The fiscal background isn't debatable: as more than 50,000 hits on Google illustrate, the nationwide wealth transfer from Silent Generation parents to Boomer Generation offspring has been some $41 trillion, quite enough to create a new phenomenon of the trust-fund economy in small governances like Vermont, not yet a clear demographic majority but certainly a now-dominant crunchy-Progressive presence.

Earlier examples, such as the Webb family in Charlotte and the Billings family in Woodstock, used railroad-based family wealth to play at farming in Vermont in the late 19th century.

New York City trustfunders-so called rural homesteaders-Scott and Helen Nearing farmed their mailbox for their unearned monthly checks along with authorship revenues from writing about "The Good Life"; they played at growing beans in Vermont during the early 20th century.

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