Volatility

May 9, 2012

Representative Government Needs A Label

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I wrote earlier about how the GMO labeling campaign is seeking a worthy goal, but how we need to prepare for it to be derailed by the criminal system. The likely real purpose of the campaign is therefore to teach the public about GMOs and about how “representative” government doesn’t work, to help organize a real food sovereignty movement, and to provide an exercise in political participation. (My acronym for this is POE, participate-organize-educate.)
 
Although the labeling campaign is trucking along in California, the most critical battlefield, we’re already seeing it gutted in other places. In Vermont, a rather modest bill had the overwhelming public and legislature support, but was gutted in committee while the governor promised a veto. The gutting was alleged to be in response to a threatened Monsanto lawsuit, but of course this was just a pretext. In Connecticut, a labeling bill was also gutted in committee, to the point that its original sponsor and Right to Know CT have withdrawn their support. (This too was about the fraudulent fear of a lawsuit. They provided an insight into how the elites think, as they admitted that according to their own lying premise, “their main duty was to protect the welfare of the state”. According to the civics textbooks the state is supposed to seek the welfare of the people, not of itself at the expense of the people. But like I said they really weren’t concerned with the welfare of anyone but Monsanto.)  Meanwhile in Oahu the city council simply voted labeling down.
 
Together these provide an object lesson in the basic fraud of “representative democracy”. On its face, any system which sees itself as a gatekeeper against such a simple, common sense practice as transparency in labeling is a radically anti-democratic system. Not to mention the overwhelming evidence by now that GMOs do in fact comprise a severe health danger. Not only is any person entitled to know if she’s eating them, but indeed any reasonable person would want to know.
 
This is the latest and one of the greatest examples of the failure and fraud of representative government. In Vermont and Connecticut bills were introduced in the legislature. We’ll see if the initiative in California does any better, but there too we can expect the system to do anything it can to thwart the will of the people.

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9 Comments

  1. I was reading about Connecticut this morning. Unreal. The piece said …..”the administration indicated that the reason for removing Section 2 (via closed door meeting) from the bill was because of concerns that the bill put CT at risk for being sued based on the outlandish and outdated concept that GMO labeling would be unconstitutional and violate the merchants’ right to remain silent and not disclose what products contain GMOs.”

    http://www.foodconsumer.org/newsite/Politics/Politics/gmo_labeling_bill_0508120818.html

    Isn’t that just another way of saying “the merchant’s right to forcefully sneak poison onto your dinner plate (for profit)”? Upside down is right side up.

    Comment by Pete — May 9, 2012 @ 8:28 am

    • Obviously these alleged fears of phantom lawsuits are just pretexts for gutting an anti-corporate law without actually having to vote against it. The state would put up great resistance against any lawsuit on behalf of the people.

      But in principle, it’s a good example of how the 1st amendment is being turned upside-down. It used to be common sense jurisprudence that commercial speech had a much lower level of protection, and that truth had a clear mandate, but that’s changing in the “legal system”.

      I wrote a post on this.

      https://attempter.wordpress.com/2010/11/16/reversing-the-polarities-the-first-amendment-and-commercial-speech/

      Just goes to show what happens when we trust the civics textbooks about things like “the Constitution”.

      Meanwhile, in a real violation of the 1st amendment, government can force products to carry ideological lies on their labels, like FDA requirements that a non-GMO label include the government lie that there’s no difference between real food and GMOs.

      Comment by Russ — May 9, 2012 @ 9:53 am

  2. It is still the case, however, that produce labelled “organic” does NOT have GMOs in it, right?
    I seem to vaguely recall that the FDA wanted to allow GMO’s, or a certain amount of GMOs, into organically labelled food. Unbelievable.
    However, if they allowed GMOs in to “organics,” I believe that would just destroy the value of the organic label, and lessen the FDAs control over the alternative, organic food pipeline. Therefore, corporatist bastards that they are, they will actually NOT try to force gmo into organic food. So far.

    The real solution for the people, of course, is to totally disregard the FDA and all labels, and create marketplaces where the food goes directly from the producer to the consumer, with no labels. Trusted relationships will be the only enforcer and source of policing.
    It will be interesting to see how the FDA reacts to that: can they really pull the raw-milk strategy on lettuce and beans?
    If so, we must practice complete civil disobedience, and disobey laws and regulations and bureaucrats who act against common sense and natural law.

    Comment by publius — May 9, 2012 @ 4:38 pm

    • Yes, anything labeled “organic” cannot have any GMOs nor have been fed any GMOs (in the case of dairy or meat).

      The USDA has wanted to erode this standard for a long time. So has the “industrial organic” complex, the likes of Whole Foods, Organic Valley, Stonyfield, etc. That was the purpose of the 2011 “co-existence” scam. The idea was to support partial deregulation of GM alfalfa, which the USDA admits will inevitably contaminate all alfalfa, rendering the existing model of organic meat and dairy (which depends on non-GM alfalfa) impossible. This accomplished contamination fact would then be used as the pretext to modify the organic certification to allow some GM content. The general goal of the USDA and industrial organic is to gradually further pervert the organic certification so that cheaper GM products can be used, while somehow inducing upper-class foodies to pay that “organic” premium.

      As it turned out, this was far too subtle for Monsanto and the gang. The joke was on Whole Foods when Obama directly intervened, ordering Vilsack to undertake full dereg of GM alfalfa. Industrial organic went out on a limb to support this idiotic and malevolent “co-existence” notion, and ended up getting sold out. Couldn’t happen to a nicer bunch of scumbags. Now the CEO of Stonyfield is running around calling upon everyone to fight. Too bad we already know his real agenda. Oh well, maybe he’s seen the light…(not likely)

      I agree that while some labels and credentials may have some use (and as I wrote in that previous post, the campaign for them can have some salutary effects), in the end there will be no substitute for citizen (in this case, eater) vigilance, local customers knowing local producers, and the abolition and transcendence of the whole producer/consumer dichotomy.

      It’s also true that if food fascism continues on its current vector, our only choice will be civil disobedience, resistance, direct action, and mutual aid. I recently started arguing that at this blog

      http://www.thecompletepatient.com/

      where an interesting food movement discussion is ongoing.

      Comment by Russ — May 9, 2012 @ 5:44 pm

      • Agree with the last two paragraphs. Changing our behavior should not be our only, last choice.. it should be our will ? desire ?
        In France, the hypermarchés are losing business because people are buying less in them, and CHOOSING to buy on farmer’s markets, from local producers.
        It is hard to change… PREJUDICES, though. Most people in France believe that bio food.. IS NECESSARILY MORE EXPENSIVE, and thus exclude themselves from buying it, out of… voluntary servitude. In subtle ways, some people believe that bio food is.. reserved for an elite, people with money, and this discourages their curiosity, their willingness to explore a new way of buying, organizing their household. As though they believe that they are not entitled to it… Sad.
        It is not true, though that bio food is necessarily more expensive, although it can be…
        Why do we resort to common sense and natural.. LAW to justify our… desire ?
        Why can’t we allow ourselves to… choose what we want for ourselves without having to give good REASONS all the time ?
        This behavior is constant kowtowing to the religion of reason.. isn’t it ?
        For something as basic as putting food into our mouths, we shouldn’t have to give good reasons to EXPLAIN what we want.
        The GMO problem has been a long time in the making.
        It is in the logic of Western thought. I could make a case for it being a throwback to the medieval alchemists’ manipulations to synthesize gold.
        We have itchy hands… and itchy minds too…can’t keep them off the creation…

        Comment by Debra — May 10, 2012 @ 4:11 am

      • It’s very much like alchemy, except that unlike the relatively innocuous alchemists, today’s technicians really can and do convert food, and pretty much any other matter, to toxic waste.

        What you call the religion of reason is also called scientism. Its main feature is a pure instrumentalism (always serving power in practice) which demands total knowledge and “reasons” for every alternative to itself, but is remarkably dogmatic and ignorant about itself. For example, genetic engineers, if we take what they say about their bogus “work” at face value, are a kind of idiot savant, extremely ignorant and stupid about everything, including science, except for their own narrow technical activity.

        But let’s not fall into the error of implying that because technocrats are fraudulent in their demand for reasons, that this somehow means we don’t have real reasons.

        On the contrary, all the facts of nature as well as human well-being – biological, environmental, energy-related, socioeconomic, political – are 100% on the side of Food Sovereignty and against industrial agriculture, which is a proven failure even at the things it promised to do like feeding the world.

        So we have not just human feeling and morality on our side, but reason and science as well. 100% of the evidence is ours. All the enemies of humanity have are lies and brute force.

        Comment by Russ — May 10, 2012 @ 4:38 am

  3. You’re right, Debra, changing our behavior shouldn’t be a last choice. But we have to resist and repel the constant attempts by the corporatists to influence and coerce our choices… theoretically, we don’t have to abide by the rules, regulations, labeling, and choices given to us.
    In reality, most of us are too busy trying to survive to make the large efforts needed to opt out or create parallel systems.

    Therefore, resistance and political struggle is necessary. Politics is where the extent and limits of coercion are set, and we would be fools to not get involved in strategic and tactically sound ways.

    Comment by publius — May 10, 2012 @ 2:09 pm

    • For example, Label It Yourself is right up our alley.

      http://labelityourself.org/for-immediate-release/

      It doesn’t wait on “the process” (initiatives or, god help us, petitions or legislation), instead we the people take our teaching, transparency, and lives in our own hands. This is direct teaching. We also have the direct experience of physically putting our hands on our food (wherever it is at the moment) and at least implicitly saying “the food, including its distribution system, belongs to us”, and we put the system on notice that we have the will to take back what’s ours.

      Comment by Russ — May 11, 2012 @ 6:25 am

  4. […] form of this movement. Meanwhile state-level legislative attempts don’t work for this, as we’ve recently seen in Vermont and Connecticut. I’ll add that Label It Yourself is the direct action which should accompany all labeling […]

    Pingback by The CELDF Strategy, and Similar Actions « Volatility — May 19, 2012 @ 3:01 am


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