Sam Fromartz, a friend of mine, author of Organic, Inc., and the maestro of the Chewswise blog takes his scapel to the Atlantic’s (I contribute to the magazine’s website.) hatchett job on Alice Waters and her school lunch program. Here’s a sample, but Sam is just getting warmed up.
In the media world, the hatchet job has long been a profitable one. It involves finding a major figure, uncovering a supposed flaw and then showing the world how it is a symptom of everything that’s wrong with — fill in the blank — politics, business, schools, etc.
Caitlin Flanagan’s rant about Alice Waters qualifies as a glowing example of the genre. In the piece, she argues that Water’s school gardens are doing everything to disenfranchise poor, undereducated kids by making them work outdoors rather than hitting the books. She leads off with a supposed child of a former migrant worker who goes to school — only to do migrant-like work at the Berkeley middle school garden that Waters organized.
The child is a figment of Flanagan’s hyperactive imagination. Keep reading . . .