Notebook: The Best of Michael Pollan for The New York Times

How Pot Has Grown,” The Times Magazine, Feb. 19, 1995

My days as a marijuana farmer ended abruptly one October morning, when a fellow delivering a cord of firewood happened to let drop that he was the police chief of a neighboring town — this while standing in my driveway, a single well-aimed glance away from my 12-foot marijuana plants. I managed just barely to steer him off the property before he spotted them. Immediately thereafter, I harvested my first and last crop: a couple of pounds of leaves that I literally could not give away.

“When a Crop Becomes King,” The Opinion Pages, July 19, 2002

Our entire food supply has undergone a process of “cornification” in recent years, without our even noticing it. . . . Most of the animals we eat (chickens, pigs and cows) today subsist on a diet of corn, regardless of whether it is good for them. In the case of beef…

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