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Is Barack Obama Monsanto's man in Washington?

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  • Is Barack Obama Monsanto's man in Washington?

    I came across this article but not in a mainstream outlet. Some of you will think that disqualifies it for consideration and that's O.K.: I live in the middle of farm country and I can tell you there is more than a little concern over GMO vegetables: Insofar as I have looked into the issue, I think the concern is warranted:


    First, some facts about GMO seeds:
    1. Patented GMO seeds are illegal to save for replanting... which Farmers have traditionally done.
    2. Soil infertility. GMO agriculture is a chemical intensive system. Agrochemicals are building up in our bodies, our water and most of all, in our soil. The accumulation of Glyphosate (roundup weed killer) is especially alarming. Farmers compensate with chemical nitrate fertilizer which causes further destruction to the soil.
    3. Monocropping: A highly diversified network of many home gardens and small to mid-sized farms, growing a great diversity of open-pollinated fruits and vegetables offers far greater food security than a few giant monocrop operations growing GMOs.
    4. Terminator seed technology (a.k.a. "the profit angle"). Terminator seeds have not yet been commercialized, but the technology does exist. Terminator refers to plants that are genetically modified to kill their own seeds. Seeds harvested from terminator crops will not germinate if replanted the following season.
    5. Dependency on a centralized food system. A network of home gardens, and small to midsize farms offers far greater food security than a centralized, globalized system.

    As part of a study on impacts from the worlds most widely used class of insecticides, nicotine-like chemicals called neonicotinoids, American Bird Conservancy (ABC) has called for a ban on their use as seed treatments and for the suspension of all applications pending an independent review of the products effects on birds, terrestrial and aquatic invertebrates, and other wildlife.

    It is clear that these chemicals have the potential to affect entire food chains. The environmental persistence of the neonicotinoids, their propensity for runoff and for groundwater infiltration, and their cumulative and largely irreversible mode of action in invertebrates raise significant environmental concerns, said Cynthia Palmer, co-author of the report and Pesticides Program Manager for ABC, one of the nations leading bird conservation organizations.
    There is a lot more in that article, including Vladimir Putin's rage at Obama for not doing anything about neonicotinoids and the potentially disastrous effect they can have on our ability to produce the food we need. There is a short discussion over a broad range of issues all connected with GMOs.

    I find it difficult to figure out why Obama is so enamored with an organization (Monsanto) that is doing or potentially doing so much damage to our crops, animals, and ultimately, we-the-people.

    The bottom line (for me and from the article) is:
    On 26 March, Obama quietly signed this Monsanto Protection Act into law thus ensuring the American people have no recourse against this bio-tech giant as they fall ill by the tens of millions, and many millions will surely end up dying in what this MRNE report calls the greatest agricultural apocalypse in human history as over 90% of feral (wild) bee population in the US has already died out, and up to 80% of domestic bees have died out too.
    I would appreciate thoughts, particularly, from those who know more about GMOs than I do... I've already searched the internet so if that is all you've got .... well, looking forward to a thread that is NOT redirected quickly.

  • #2
    Re: Is Barack Obama Monsanto's man in Washington?

    I think the danger of GMO's is way overblown.

    Man has been genetically modifying plants... and animals for thousands of years... breeding for traits we want, and to exclude those we don't.

    I believe that the human consumption of GMO crops to be 100% safe.

    I take no real issue with bio-diversity, but I'd like to point out, again, that those 'legacy' crops were also GM to their current form.


    • #3
      Re: Is Barack Obama Monsanto's man in Washington?

      There was no "Monsanto Protection Act".


      • #4
        Re: Is Barack Obama Monsanto's man in Washington?


        Humans have been genetically engineering species for as long as we've domesticated them and as long as we have been an agrarian society. Just now a days we are in such a hurry. We don't want to breed it into the species the old fashioned way, we just want it done over night (shoot some genomes we want into the plant cells, etc)

        I wonder what threat it would be if a GMO crop escaped into the wild and reproduced, supplanting any less GMO varieties (remember, all of today's crops are the result of selective breeding, i.e. genetic manipulation).

        I suspect that the GMO traits / genes would be lost within a few generations, and the result would be indistinguishable from the non-GMO varieties that we grow on a daily basis.


        • #5
          Re: Is Barack Obama Monsanto's man in Washington?

          As the joke goes...What's the other name for "Hybrid Seeds"?...Seeds.
          Thank you, Glenn Beck, for selling "Seeds".


          • #6
            Re: Is Barack Obama Monsanto's man in Washington?

            HR 933, Section 735:
            Sec. 735. In the event that a determination of non-regulated status made pursuant to section 411 of the Plant Protection Act is or has been invalidated or vacated, the Secretary of Agriculture shall, notwithstanding any other provision of law, upon request by a farmer, grower, farm operator, or producer, immediately grant temporary permit(s) or temporary deregulation in part, subject to necessary and appropriate conditions consistent with section 411(a) or 412(c) of the Plant Protection Act, which interim conditions shall authorize the movement, introduction, continued cultivation, commercialization and other specifically enumerated activities and requirements, including measures designed to mitigate or minimize potential adverse environmental effects, if any, relevant to the Secretary’s evaluation of the petition for non-regulated status, while ensuring that growers or other users are able to move, plant, cultivate, introduce into commerce and carry out other authorized activities in a timely manner: Provided, That all such conditions shall be applicable only for the interim period necessary for the Secretary to complete any required analyses or consultations related to the petition for non-regulated status: Provided further, That nothing in this section shall be construed as limiting the Secretary’s authority under section 411, 412 and 414 of the Plant Protection Act.
            The rider references the sections 411, 412, and 414 of the Plant Protection Act:
            Section 411 of the Plant Protection Act gives the Secretary of Agriculture power to regulate the movement of plant pests, including prohibiting them altogether or allowing pests to be moved around with a permit.
            Section 412 deals with plants, plant products, and other items (including vehicles) that might carry a plant pest into the U.S. or spread an already existing plant pest.
            Section 414 gives the Secretary of Agriculture authority to seize, treat, or destroy (or order someone else to do any of those) an item or pest in order to prevent the spread or introduction of a pest.

            With all that in mind, in short, HR 933, Section 735 says that once a plant or other organism has been declared not to be a pest, no legal challenge can stop anyone from spreading it around the U.S. until the Secretary of State declares it to be a pest... which protects Bio-engineering concerns like Monsanto from being sued to halt production of GMOs in specific fields... hence, the name "Monsanto Protection Act."


            IF GMOs are no big deal, why would Vladimir Putin be so outraged?


            • #7
              Re: Is Barack Obama Monsanto's man in Washington?

              Originally posted by Good1 View Post
              IF GMOs are no big deal, why would Vladimir Putin be so outraged?
              Since when does Vladimir Putin need a reason?

              But if he has one, it's likely to be that he doesn't control GMOs


              • #8
                Re: Is Barack Obama Monsanto's man in Washington?

                Good1, You do notice your most recent post invalidates some of the original post?


                • #9
                  Re: Is Barack Obama Monsanto's man in Washington?

                  I think I'll let Penn and the late, great Dr. Norman Borlaug handle this one:


                  • #10
                    Re: Is Barack Obama Monsanto's man in Washington?

                    There are lots of people who grow their own food that are only using Heirloom seeds, which you can save and plant again, and do this forever. Hybrid seeds are nothing new, but with most of them if not all, if you save seeds to plant, you won't get good plants. These GMO seeds, many of them cannot be done naturally, as in some even animal or other dna is introduced.

                    To say that all GMO seeds are just like a naturally bred hybrid, isn't completely true. And Good1 is correct in that these require more chemicals than the traditional ones used for heirloom plants. They even have produced by genetic tampering a strawberry that can grow in snow, using non plant dna or genes, giving the GMO seeds an antifreeze. We won't know of some of the adverse effects upon human health for perhaps decades or longer.

                    The trouble with GMOs is it takes away diversity, acquired over hundreds of years of cultivation and natural cross breeding with the same species, with these seeds being well adapted to natural conditions on earth, in particular areas. If you have a monolithic species of GMOs, without the diversity you are playing craps with the food supply. All it takes is one blight, an evolution in insects(which happens all the time) nematodes evolving, plant disease evolving and you could wipe out an entire nations crop in one season.

                    The trouble has always been technological advances outpace human intelligence. And that is where you can get into trouble with the cost being great in human lives. When profit drives these advances, that tends to blind those folks to other very important things.

                    I am for progress, and would be an idiot if I were against hybrids, because those have given us the capability to feed more humans off the same acreage. But you should always be very careful, especially when it comes to GMOs that introduce genetic manipulation, not always from plants, overused chemicals and are not tested over a long period.

                    Remember what a monolithic food source like potatoes led to in Ireland. How man people died from that famine? They were all growing the same species of potato. We should have learned from that experience.

                    Just because we have the tech to do some things, doesn't mean we should go crazy doing it. And we have, or Monsanto has gone crazy doing it. There may be future unintended consequences, in fact you would place a safe bet if you bet that there will be.

                    For those that grew up or live on a farm, or grow their food today, they will all tell you that the old heirloom seeds may not yield as much as a GMO, but the vegetables from heirloom seeds have such a much better taste than many hybrids or GMOs. I tested out a new hybrid string bean a few years ago and it produced almost twice of what my Blue Lakes did, but they were practically tasteless, right off the vine. If you canned them or froze them, forget about it. Not worth eating. But boy they sure were prolific and pretty to look at.
                    Last edited by Blue Doggy; 05-28-2013, 02:47 PM.


                    • #11
                      Re: Is Barack Obama Monsanto's man in Washington?

                      Originally posted by JDJarvis View Post
                      Good1, You do notice your most recent post invalidates some of the original post?
                      I'm not seeing it, JD: You said there is no "monsanto protection act," I quoted you chapter and verse that shows there is at least SOME protection in there for Monsanto and other bio engineering outfits.

                      How did I invalidate anything?


                      • #12
                        Re: Is Barack Obama Monsanto's man in Washington?

                        Originally posted by tsquare View Post
                        I think the danger of GMO's is way overblown.

                        Man has been genetically modifying plants... and animals for thousands of years... breeding for traits we want, and to exclude those we don't.

                        I believe that the human consumption of GMO crops to be 100% safe.

                        I take no real issue with bio-diversity, but I'd like to point out, again, that those 'legacy' crops were also GM to their current form.
                        What I don't like about GMO's is when they splice some bacterial gene into a plant gene. In prior years, with hybridization, the was no mixing of species. Now a BT gene is spliced into corn to kill worms. That to me crosses the line. Who knows what that gene does when introduced into the human body?


                        • #13
                          Re: Is Barack Obama Monsanto's man in Washington?

                          Originally posted by OldmanDan View Post
                          What I don't like about GMO's is when they splice some bacterial gene into a plant gene. In prior years, with hybridization, the was no mixing of species. Now a BT gene is spliced into corn to kill worms. That to me crosses the line. Who knows what that gene does when introduced into the human body?
                          Ahhh... nothing?

                          No more than any other gene form anything else you ingest. To wit:

                          Thus humans have always been exposed to DNA fragments in their guts. No harmful effects have been identified and there is no evidence for this DNA affecting germ cells.

                          1. Scientific investigations mentioned by Genetic Roulette do not detect genes, they detect gene fragments that are unable to function as genes. A fragment of a gene cannot confer the characteristics of the complete gene and its associated traits. Without a functioning promoter a protein cannot be formed. A fragment of a gene cannot confer ability to produce the complete protein associated with the full gene. Smith interchanges the words genes and DNA to make it appear that whole genes are being ingested. The human diet is full of gene-sized fragments of DNA but eating these genes and gene fragments has never harmed us because we have evolved to survive the every-day challenges of eating food.

                          2. Smith misleads readers about survival of full-length transgenes in the gut of human volunteers. Smith mistakenly claims that a human feeding study detected the survival of full-length transgenes in the gut. Measurement of a small fragment of the full gene (Martin-Orue and others 2002, Netherwood and others 2004) does not show this. Smith is simply misrepresenting what the scientific article says.

                          3. No fully working transgene has been detected as moving in the way Smith asserts. There are no reports available in the scientific peer reviewed literature demonstrating that a working gene has transferred from transgenic plants (Hohlweg and Doerfler 2001, Thomson 2001). Most worryingly (see Smith’s sections 5.4 and 5.6) Genetic Roulette fabricates such evidence.

                          4. Food contains a massive numbers of other genes than the transgene and always has contained much DNA. The scenarios of gene fragment movement outlined in Genetic Roulette also apply to other food DNA, and are part and parcel of humans eating food. Over millions of years, the human gut of our ancestors has been exposed to undigested gene fragments without them causing any identifiable harm. Smith fails to discuss the similar risks posed by non-transgenic plant DNA which is abundant in the gut and which is taken up in the spleen and liver (Hohlweg and Doerfler 2001) . He pays no attention to existing sources of DNA hazards in conventional food and the evidence available from their history of safe use (Beever and Kemp 2000, Carver and Walker 1995, Hohlweg and Doerfler 2001, Doerfler and others 2001, van den Eede and others 2004).

                          Genetic Roulette Claim: In spite of industry claims, transgenes survive the digestive system and can wander. | Academics Review


                          • #14
                            Re: Is Barack Obama Monsanto's man in Washington?

                            Originally posted by OldmanDan View Post
                            What I don't like about GMO's is when they splice some bacterial gene into a plant gene. In prior years, with hybridization, the was no mixing of species. Now a BT gene is spliced into corn to kill worms. That to me crosses the line. Who knows what that gene does when introduced into the human body?
                            Unless you're grafting the living plant tissue onto your body, the gene will likely be dissolved by the acid in your stomach, like pretty much anything that you eat.

                            But since we're going off about "who knows if...," who knows what any genetically modified plant gene will do to the human body?

                            If you're going to gripe, come up with some science to back up your concern.


                            • #15
                              Re: Is Barack Obama Monsanto's man in Washington?

                              Good1, Monsanto isn't mentioned once.
                              The inability to sue for a product the is dangerous is not spellled out or indicated.
                              Contractts are not enforced.
                              Ownership of hybrid seed created by airborn pollination isn't defined or protected.
                              Use of chemicals that have otherwise been identified as dangerous is not. Identified, nor is any degree of legal protection.