Originally Posted by Cambridgite
The key here is that it has to be REAL rural living. Buying or building a "country house" in some little exurb and gentifying a little village into boutiques, pottery stores, and antique shops is not rural living. That's just the urban/suburban commuter trying to fit his/her vision of what quaint-ass rural living must be like into a place that was once an authentic rural landscape. This is NOT country living and is possibly the must unsustainable way one can live...even much worse than the suburbs, I'd argue.
Now if we have real productive agriculture near our communities (and not using shit loads of pesticides and fertilizers) that's another matter. Or truly living off the land, then that's another story.
Exactly. And this will never, ever, ever happen. Ever.
Maybe there will be a new generation of the hippie communes of the '60s, but it won't have any meaningful impact. It'll be a bunch of crazy PETA member types that nobody listens to.
Our best hope is to regulate land use to:
1. Encourage or require accessibility of workplaces and homes via public transportation. Higher densities, land use restrictions, TODs, etc could encourage this.
2. Revise the tax code and real estate law to subsidize urban, rather than suburban living.
3. Invest more in mass transit and rail infrastructure, and less in building superhighways through currently rural areas to encourage subdivisions and office parks to spring up alongside.
4. Ban greenfield development of subdivisions, office parks, shopping centers, etc on rural land. Develop greenbelts around U.S. cities, and make sure they're large enough that development doesn't just skip over a mile or two of forest and continue (see: Chicago's near-continuous belt of forest preserve land, which is nice but doesn't do anything to restrict sprawl