This is a remarkable story of people
who survived through the dust bowl. It was well written
and I found it extremely interesting. I thought the style of detailing
first person accounts was very effective. Here are a few thoughts I had
while reading the book:
- I had no idea just how bad things
had gotten during the dust bowl.
I remember reading about the dust bowl in history class as a child.
But to hear written first hand accounts of the situation and to know the stories
of particular people brought the misery of the dust bowl to life. The book
is a very effective tool in communicating this part of our history.
- The dust bowl is a clear warning of
unintended consequences of central planning.
A government commission that studied the problem clearly saw that a large
cause of the problem was the government itself. The desire to settle the
midwest was push with incentives instead of allowed to grow naturally.
Governments should only get involved when a problem cannot be solved
without its input.
- The book confirms me in my interest
in more sustainable practices. I am in the process of
buying some land at the time of this writing. My interest in gardening is
growing and I have plans to add different aspects. But I plan on paying
attention to the land with an eye towards the future. Hopefully I will
leave the land in better shape than when I arrive.
I recommend this
book. I think it is a great way to learn about our
history. It is important to know mistakes of the past so we can recognize
them as they occur in our lifetimes. When we see them, we can hopefully
make better decisions in how to respond to them. I was surprised to learn
that there were people who stayed in some of the hardest hit areas out of
pride. They stayed even as family members left or died and they had no
hope of doing much better than simply surviving. Having a historical
perspective will at least hopefully save people from flawed thinking such
as, “It can never happen to me” or the sunk cost fallacy.