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Follow me on Twitter @MattBors and order a copy of my latest book, Life Begins At Incorporation.

Originally posted to Comics on Wed Jun 11, 2014 at 06:50 AM PDT.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Matt, this is so right on (10+ / 0-)

    We are on this road. As we become more desperate for food as the current agrochemical industrial model of "farming", we will be "forced" to put up with ever more bizarre artificial methods of avoiding famine when all we need to do is shift to small scale organic farming on widespread basis.

    Rip up your lawn! You are an essential part of your local food system!

    The UN is warning us about our present path.

    We have it within our power to make the world over again ~ Thomas Paine

    by occupystephanie on Wed Jun 11, 2014 at 07:06:02 AM PDT

    •  Be sure to test your soil for lead (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      growingMajorityMN, renbear, WakeUpNeo

      before you convert your lawn to a garden. In many urban areas, lead residue from leaded gasoline is still in the soil.

      American Presidents: 43 men, 0 women. Ready for Hillary

      by atana on Wed Jun 11, 2014 at 11:00:17 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Particularly a foot or so around older houses.... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        ....more than about 40 years old or so, the dirt around a house is contaminated with chipped and fallen paint which is likely heavily leaded.

        Be careful when digging around your house, and consider "transplanting" dirt around the foundation if you're gonna plant a garden next to it!

        "Ronald Reagan is DEAD! His policies live on but we're doing something about THAT!"

        by leftykook on Wed Jun 11, 2014 at 01:26:48 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  I'm mildly surprised that the libertarian (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Pale Jenova, JeffW

    crypto-fascists have not yet revived Jonathan Swift's idea:

    since they already like this idea of his:

    In the end, reality always wins.

    by Lenny Flank on Wed Jun 11, 2014 at 07:07:31 AM PDT

  •  Is Soylent Green really people? It tastes more (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    like kale. Which, along with acai berries, is the most revolting thing that is supposed to be "good for you."

    And God said, "Let there be light"; and with a Big Bang, there was light. And God said "Ow! Ow My eyes!" and in a flash God separated light from darkness. "Whew! Now that's better. Now where was I. Oh yea . . ."

    by Pale Jenova on Wed Jun 11, 2014 at 07:15:18 AM PDT

  •  Everyone may not have seen the story in The New (6+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Piren, OLinda, Lily O Lady, JeffW, Anjana, TexasTom

    Yorker - this is an actual product (not made from people or anything living, just nutrients formulated together to give optimum results).  Sounds boring, but people who consume nothing else claim to have improved health and well-being.
    What next, speed-sleeping?

    O Jungens, ich will doch gar kein Mensch sein (Jimmy Mahoney in Mahagonny by Brecht/Weill)

    by richardvjohnson on Wed Jun 11, 2014 at 07:42:51 AM PDT

    •  I can see this being good as an alternate food (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      if you're, say, traveling in the wilderness or the like as a liquid MRE.  I love food too much to ingest it long term, though.

      "You are not stupid. You are important. You mean something, and you're going to go out there and you're going to do some wonderful things." Justin Carmical

      by Anjana on Wed Jun 11, 2014 at 09:30:03 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Their point isn't to replace all meals (0+ / 0-)

        just the ones that hurt us the most... fast food for lunch in our cubicles, for instance.

        Man is simply a monkey with an attitude.

        by rbutters on Wed Jun 11, 2014 at 12:40:45 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Actually the point of the founders of the company (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          is that no one needs to eat anything else, ever.  Food being necessity without any aesthetic dimensions.  Because they're too busy developing software to think about food and this is, like, way easier than even pizza.
          There is honestly something to be said for that viewpoint if one believes the greatest social good is the creation of yet more software.  
          One of my college role model profs once told me 'you'll know when you're middle aged when food and drink become more interesting than sex'.
          Well, I got there a lot time ago.  It's the variety factor.  Sex, no matter how many combinations of people you engage in it with, is more or less the same thing every time.  Food and drink are more or less infinitely variable..

          O Jungens, ich will doch gar kein Mensch sein (Jimmy Mahoney in Mahagonny by Brecht/Weill)

          by richardvjohnson on Thu Jun 12, 2014 at 03:15:14 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Half correct (2+ / 0-)

            One or two of the founders subsist completely, or almost completely on the stuff, but I don't think that's what they are marketing it as. Many of the journalists that received 2 week samples have stated they were told, several times, that it was NOT intended to replace all food intake and that they could not recommend doing so. That may be their lawyers at work, but officially they are not pushing Soylent as a 100% forever meal substitute. Their marketing and interviews skew pretty heavily into the "no more need for microwave burgers in your cubicle" and "quick and easy breakfast" type territory.

            Man is simply a monkey with an attitude.

            by rbutters on Thu Jun 12, 2014 at 09:48:46 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

    •  The thing is (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      Not everyone enjoys eating. A liquid diet that includes adequate roughage is a great option.

    •  He was on Colbert the other day (0+ / 0-)

      The guy who invented it said it was really popular with coders "so that they could keep coding and not have to stop for lunch". That sent a shiver through me -- it's a short step from voluntarily skipping lunch and drinking this crap to no lunch at all and being forced to drink this crap instead. Just like panel 3 of the cartoon.

      My husband found a recipe for Soylent on the 'net, and drank it for a while. I tried it, and thanks, but I'll get my nutrients the old fashioned way.

  •  Soylent is a very valid concept (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    kittie, Whamadoodle

    A nutritious and (relatively) cheap alternative to the "pointless meals" we consume so often in this country. By that I mean, how many coworkers do you know that McDonalds for lunch every day. Or a couple of selections from under the heat lamp at 7-11. You know, spending good money on things that are surely killing you.

    They say their product is intended to fill the gaps in between real meals you intend to enjoy, replacing the meals that are usually the worst for us. I think it's an interesting idea.

    But yes, it's a stupid name.

    Man is simply a monkey with an attitude.

    by rbutters on Wed Jun 11, 2014 at 12:39:53 PM PDT

  •  Which compels to say this: no sh*t. (0+ / 0-)

    Or is there?

  •  Scary Point (5+ / 0-)

    I read a blog article about this a couple days ago.  I also read the comments... and discovered something pretty scary.

    Someone suggested that the US government perfect Soylent and then make it the ONLY FOOD people on food stamps or welfare checks can get.

    That's scary enough... but what was truly horrifying was how many people agreed with the idea.

    More and more, I see people in this country forgetting that there is a huge difference between being alive and actually living a life.  They object strongly to people on assistance having any enjoyment "on the public dime".   They seem to have the mistaken assumption that if we yank everything pleasurable from people on welfare it will "motivate" them to "get a job"

    Forget the fact that most people who receive non-disability related assistance work at least part time and many work full time.

    Forget that the process of obtaining and keeping that assistance is not easy.

    Don't they realize that being able to enjoy life is the whole point of living?   Taking away every pleasure in life doesn't motivate people.  It makes them depressed... and depressed people are not out there looking for a job that probably doesn't exist in the first place.

    •  Exactly! (3+ / 0-)
      Taking away every pleasure in life doesn't motivate people.  It makes them depressed... and depressed people are not out there looking for a job that probably doesn't exist in the first place.
      And we wonder why we've got so many people on antidepressants, so many heinous mass shootings and 'suicide by cop' incidents...
      "Take four red capsules. In 10 minutes take two more. Help is on the way."
      - THX-1138

      People with nothing to live for have nothing to lose.  They are the dogs growling in the corner with their tails tucked between their legs, KNOWING they're going to get hit, but desperate enough to try and get one good bite in beforehand.

      The "don't give them an inch" ultracons have NO idea how things will go... by creating classes of Haves and Have-Nots, with ever-increasing numbers of the latter and higher and higher "protections" for the former, at some point, the torches and pitchforks will make their appearance again.

      The Rich and Spoiled 1%'ers are making the Biker Gang 1%'ers look a lot better than they used to.

      by dcnblues on Thu Jun 12, 2014 at 03:20:16 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Yes (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        But to be honest, liberals have played a powerful role in utterly marginalizing those who aren't currently of use to employers. If there's 7 jobs for every 10 people who urgently need one, what do today's liberals say to the 3 left out?  Nothing. We all just pretend they don't exist.

    •  True (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      This generation has been very toxic.  They are also inexplicably uninformed. There is no welfare -- no General Assistance, no AFDC (TANF is a marginally subsidized job program exclusively for those with minor children). No one is on welfare. The last welfare check was issued in 1996. Food stamps are for the elderly, disabled and working poor. They are necessary because not everyone can work (and there is little demand for seriously ill/dying workers) and wages have fallen so far behind the cost of living. I would argue that there is something gravely wrong with a culture that bases human worth itself on one's use to employers/the corporate state (and this is perhaps especially true in a country that shipped out a huge chunk of our working class jobs). The last I saw, there are currently 7 jobs for every 10 people desperate for jobs. What is the appropriate response to those who have been left behind? This generation does say, "Go die." Bill Clinton did experiment with slashing disability aid and requiring seriously ill/disabled adults who have minor children to "find jobs." This went quite badly.

  •  Have been saying this ever since GMO have been (0+ / 0-)

    reported about, that in the future we may be eating Soylent Green.

  •  Reminds me of 'Good Omens' by Pratchett & Gaiman (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Where Raven Sable a.k.a. Famine does his work by creating trendy diet plans and artificial 'Mealz'.

    Kids! Bringing about Armageddon can be dangerous. Do not attempt it in your own home.      ~ Good Omens
  •  Soylent Alternatives (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    People interested in the concept but not the execution should check out MealSquares and Ambronite instead. Made of whole foods instead of vitamin powders.

  •  We already put fast food joints in gas stations... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    ...this is just the next logical step in the progression from "dining" (a social, sensual experience that does not require gluttony and involves as much conversation as it does food) to "refueling" (something to be done as quickly and "efficiently" as possible). It's what Western "civilization" is all about: doing it faster, cheaper, more efficiently, moving us ever closer to the perfect machine of capitalism.

    I've known a few people whom I suspect would love Soylent--people who'd really rather not have to think about that dirty animal process of ingesting, digesting and excreting. Think of the people who go on "liquid protein" diets and seem to be happier when just drinking that sludge three times a day. Heck, think back to my childhood, and "Carnation Instant Breakfast," this powder you added to milk to make it "a nutritionally complete meal." No need to sit down, no need to interrupt your constant work, just slam this liquid and get down to business, you productivity unit, you...

    •  Why (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      Is it so hard to grasp that people are individuals, and individuals have different preferences? I'm one of those who simply doesn't find any pleasure in sitting down to stare at food as I consume it.  Eating is a necessary function. I don't divide my time exclusive between eating and working. I hate sitting at a table to eat, and I've been this way since I was very little. As for liquid diets -- I, personally, do like things like "Instant Breakfast." There are no social implications involved -- just personal preferences.

  •  Okay, really? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    I get that the film was popular and all, but y'all do realize that Soylent was originally so-named for its two main components: soya and lentils?

    The fact that Rhinehart's product contains no lentils was what I was most disappointed in, personally.

  •  The Simpsons (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    There was a Simpsons episode where Homer was chowing down on Soylent Green.

  •  Don't worry (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Soylent: "Soylent is an open sourced food substitute intended to supply all of a human body's daily nutritional needs, made from maltodextrin, rice protein, oat flour, canola oil, fish oil, and raw chemical powders."  Some would like it, some wouldn't.  From what I can determine, it might be particularly useful in helping to reduce world hunger, saving lives. There won't come a day when this will be the only option. We have a remarkable capacity for periodically "thinning out" our population via wars, etc. Global warming would present a far greater threat to our food supply, but this is a very complex issue, and my guess is that plant life (if primarily mosses for a time) would out-last human/animal life.

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