A Producer Economy
"In addition to the multiple-function, farm-gown crops used for food, fuel and building material, there is a large acreage devoted to the growing of textile and fiber products and enormous quantities of these are produced annually," notes Franklin Hiram King, in his 1911 tome, Farmers of Forty Centuries: Organic Farming in China, Korea, and Japan (originally titled Farmers of Forty Centuries; Or, Permanent Agriculture in China, Korea, and Japan). He goes on to write:
- This marvelous heritage of economy, industry and thrift, bred of the stress of centuries, must not be permitted to lose virility through contact with western wasteful practices, now exalted to seeming virtues through the dazzling brilliancy of mechanical achievements. More and more must labor be dignified in all homes alike, and economy, industry and thrift become inherited impulses compelling and satisfying.
Cheap, rapid, long distance transportation, already well started in these countries, will bring with it a fuller utilization of the large stores of coal and mineral wealth and of the enormous available water power, and as a result there will come some temporary lessening of the stress for fuel and with better forest management some relief along the lines of building materials. But the time is not a century distant when, throughout the world, a fuller, better development must take place along the lines of these most far-reaching and fundamental practices so long and so effectively followed by the Mongolian races in China, Korea and Japan. When the enormous water-power of these countries has been harnessed and brought into the foot-hills and down upon the margins of the valleys and plains in the form of electric current, let it, if possible, be in a large measure so distributed as to become available in the country village homes to lighten the burden and lessen the human drudgery and yet increase the efficiency of the human effort now so well bestowed upon subsidiary manufactures under the guidance and initiative of the home, where there may be room to breathe and for children to come up to manhood and womanhood in the best conditions possible, rather than in enormous congested factories.