February 7, 2014

GMO News Summary February 7/2014


I’m intending to do a weekly news summary. Here’s the first installment.
*If the monarch butterfly goes extinct, as it looks poised to do within our lifetimes, the main cause will be herbicide-based agriculture. GMO abolition can still prevent this outcome.
*Scotts’ GM Kentucky bluegrass is looking to be the first commercialized GMO to enter a non-regulatory black hole the USDA has created. GMO regulation in the US is already a joke, in principle and practice. But for newer varieties, as far as the USDA is concerned there’s to be no regulation at all.
(Another good example of how under Democrat power the GMO assault has been escalated and accelerated. In practice there’s no difference between Democrats and Republicans, and GMO policy is one of the best examples of this. It’s impossible for anyone who cares about GMOs to think there’s anything to choose here. Obama’s been the most aggressively pro-Monsanto president yet in every way, and clearly considers this a core element of his presidency.)
*It’s a race to the bottom, and indeed probably illegal, to find experimental subjects for the alleged “cancer-fighting GM purple tomato”. The thing is probably not even meant to be commercialized. It’s more potentially useful as hype than as another failed GM product like the Kenyan GM sweet potato or any glyphosate-tolerant variety. It’s worthless and unnecessary. Meanwhile, as always in these cases, there exists a higher-quality, non-hazardous, less expensive non-GM variety. High-anthocyanin purple tomatoes have been conventionally bred in Brazil.
*The editor of Food and Chemical Toxicology refuses to retract a recently published bogus study, although in every way it’s inferior to Seralini study, including in being far less “conclusive”. Hayes gave as his reason for the retraction that the Seralini was “inconclusive”. This is not only a lie – the Seralini study is above average among scientific studies in general in the strength of its conclusions – but violates Committee on Publishing Ethics (COPE) guidelines, which allow for retraction only in the case of fraud, misconduct, or gross incompetence. Hayes cleared Seralini of any such problems. (Given his general willingness to lie, we have to figure the reason Hayes didn’t accuse Seralini of fraud while he was at it is that he’s a coward. Seralini has a history of successfully suing hacks for libeling him, so Hayes was probably too cowardly to cross a certain line in his lies.)
*New website dedicated to the rising protest of scientists against the suppression of the Seralini study and the corporate hijacking of science it exemplifies.
*Speaking of Seralini, he’s part of a team out with a new study comparing nine commercial poison formulations (three herbicides, three insecticides, three fungicides) with their official “active ingredients” in isolation. The study compares the toxicity of these poisons to human cells in vitro. The results: in 8 of 9 cases, the commercial formulation is more toxic, in most cases far more so, than the “active ingredient”.
This is further support for what citizens, scientists, public health workers, environmentalists, and many others have long been documenting, that regulation which focuses on a single arbitrary “active” ingredient rather than the true toxic brew which will be deployed in reality is a sham. The commercial formulations are far more toxic.
*Germany (the EU’s “rapporteur state” on glyphosate) recommends the EU recertify glyphosate and allow an increased level in food. As always, these recommendations of regulators that allowed levels of poisons be increased has zero to do with scientific evidence of safety (and usually directly contradicts the evidence), but simply authorizes whatever level the corporations want to deploy. This is regulator triangulation at its most stark and malevolent.
*Russian legislators are pushing a bill to ban all GM cultivation and restrict imports. Currently no cultivation has been approved, but several varieties are authorized for import in food and feed. The only restriction on these is that food containing them must be labeled. Meanwhile a new state registry for GMOs and products containing them is supposed to go into effect in June 2014. I’ve read conflicting reports on whether this is a good thing or not. Some campaigners oppose it claiming it will give the prime minister dictatorial discretion to allow GMO cultivation and expanded importation. The current PM, Medvedev, hasn’t sounded very pro-GMO, and in September ordered government agencies to study the prospect of a ban. Certainly a legal ban is much better instead of or on top of any government registry.
Although I haven’t had a chance to study Russia’s GMO situation yet, my default is to assume that their situation is similar to that of China. The elites don’t oppose GMOs out of the kindness of their hearts. If they have a go-slow or even oppositionist position, it’s because they view the Monsanto/US GMO cartel in the same way they’ve always viewed aggressive, domination-seeking US power. In that case they’re probably thinking in terms of building their own rival cartel.
*The latest experimental release of Oxitec’s GM mosquitoes will be in Panama this month. These frankenbugs allegedly are meant to help cut down on the population of mosquitoes which transmit dengue fever. Previous releases in the Cayman Islands and Malaysia, and an ongoing experiment in Brazil, have produced no evidence that this method works. The most likely result is that if it does work to reduce the target species, another species which also transmits dengue fever will expand to occupy the ecological niche. Such secondary pests are a regular result of GMO gambits, such as mirid bugs in China ravaging any Bt cotton which does temporarily work to suppress the target weevil.
Let me know if there’s any other news. I didn’t get a chance yet to read about Bangladesh’s impending commercialization of BT brinjal (eggplant), an awful development. There’s zero reason for this product, and Southeast Asia is the world’s germplasm heritage center for eggplant. There are thousands of well-adapted varieties, including for insect resistance. No one on earth except for a handful of corporate gangsters needs or wants GM eggplant, and it would be a disaster for everyone except for these criminals.
This naturally effective biodiversity is exactly what GMO-based monoculture seeks to eradicate. That’s why Monsanto wants to eradicate the world’s resilient, public domain eggplant germplasm heritage and replace it with a hyper-vulnerable, genetically crippled and sterile, sure-to-fail proprietary enclosure.
So far Monsanto’s offensive has stalled out in India and the Philippines, but they’ve been hoping to break through in Bangladesh. The goal will then be to illegally infiltrate the rest of Southeast Asia, achieve a genetic coup, and present governments with an accomplished fact.
If this attack succeeds, the result could be the middle-run total enclosure of a radically diminished eggplant germplasm, and the long-run complete failure of the crop, with subsequent famine. This is what humanity is up against with all GMOs. This is why “coexistence” with GMOs is impossible, and why their total abolition is necessary.



  1. I love this new feature! I look forward to seeing this feature every week (though the news isn’t always uplifting, but the mere fact you’re revealing the truth is in itself a positive thing).

    Comment by DualPersonality — February 7, 2014 @ 8:38 am

  2. Keep the torch lit Russ. I hope you don’t mind, I’ve been internet crusading a bit lately (during the slower winter months on the farm) and citing much of your argumentation, as well as many of your posts and sources to fight the disinformation campaigns out there. I even came across my old ‘whole health practitioner’ in Chicago- who had a newsletter that essentially gave GMO foods a hall pass as ‘safe to consume’ (based on “the science”). This is a relatively forward thinking HC organization that has a much more comprehensive nutritional approach than the usual conventional docs (who are much quicker to put you on a synthetic pill protocol rather than actually ask you about your diet and lifestyle)- they even have their own apothecary- but shockingly, still cannot tell the difference between something as basic as hybrid growing and GMO lab coat interventions. The point being, even people who one would expect to have basic knowledge on the subject, often do not. The industry propaganda is VERY effective.

    How do you tell a doctor he’s an idiot without calling him an idiot? That’s rhetorical, don’t answer… wink wink, nudge nudge…

    Comment by Pete — February 7, 2014 @ 5:39 pm

    • Thanks Pete. Of course I don’t mind! That’s what the site’s for. I saw that thread, because I got several hits from there and went to check out where they were coming from. Thanks for working on that and linking this site.

      What can you say about that type, the self-styled “reasonable, moderate” type who’s a pure ignoramus but who knows all about the “scientific consensus” because the New York Times told him so? That’s the exact same person who always knew that cigarettes were safe, asbestos was safe, DDT, PCBs, dioxin, thalidomide were safe. They know today that GMOs are safe.

      That’s the surest sign of how bad their health effects are going to turn out to be.

      Comment by Russ — February 7, 2014 @ 5:49 pm

      • When you say you “got several hits from there”, does that mean people on the ‘whole health chicago’ newsletter thread clicked on the links I provided and you can trace the hits to that source? (in essence, you can see the origins of those who visit your site?) If that’s the case, fantastic. If whatever the hell I said ( I can’t recall from so many shots in the dark) got someone/anyone’s interest peaked, I’ll take it.

        Of course, bad with the good, you’ve probably had some hits from cultist blogs as well. I was recently sparring with a cultist blog called “skeptical raptor”, who does anything but practice skepticism, which probably brought some troll visits to your blog. Good news though- as I had a good laugh…. because of my original argument with the author about vaccine neurotoxins, his last post was called “I am not, nor have I ever been, a member of the Big Pharma shill party.” If you have to write a blog with that title, you are most certainly a corporate stooge of some kind. Oh well (I’m a romantic at heart), once I realized none of them were actually scientists, understood anything about health, agriculture or nature… I eventually decided it was internet white noise. I figger we may as well work on the people that haven’t yet sold out for ideological purposes and still deserve a spot in the lifeboat.

        If 3 or 4 people from the doc’s newsletter clicked on your site to learn about GMO’s, that’s a damn victory in my book. Ripples make waves my friend.

        Comment by Pete — February 7, 2014 @ 6:46 pm

      • I’m trying to decide whether to laugh or cry over the fact that every generation seems to have contempt for the stupidity of the previous generation, while they doggedly proceed to follow the same wrong path.

        Comment by DualPersonality — February 7, 2014 @ 10:03 pm

      • Pete, yes on my blog stats I can see if people came here by clicking on a link somewhere. I’ve had a few hits a day from there since you posted my link.

        You’re right, a shill is a shill. And if one is a voluntary, unpaid shill, that’s even more pathetic. It means one’s a contemptible brown-noser at heart, and also that one’s such a loser that he can’t even get paid for his shilling. God knows the bar’s not high – look how much the likes of Mark Lynas gets paid for his incompetent hackery.

        It’s impossible to be a scientist and support GMOs. One would have to reject their deployment in accord with the Need, Alternatives, and Precautionary Principles, since no evidence in GMOs’ favor has ever been compiled or even sought. One would also have to reject them on account of the massive contrary evidence which has been amassed by farmers, citizens, public health professionals, economists, and independent researchers.

        Comment by Russ — February 8, 2014 @ 3:06 am

      • It’s the typical arrogance of ignorance, DP. And a textbook example of how most people are incapable of learning from history. Of course both of these syndromes are tremendously magnified wherever one occupies any kind of “elite” position. As a rule elites are the stupidest people, since they’re the most insulated from the consequences of stupidity and receive the fewest checks from reality.

        Comment by Russ — February 8, 2014 @ 3:10 am

      • Russ, I think I’m going to start referring your blog to anyone who starts engaging me in a discussion about this stuff. You’ve done so much research, it would be really hard for anyone who’s interested to not learn something from your writings.

        Comment by DualPersonality — February 8, 2014 @ 9:36 am

      • Thanks!

        Comment by Russ — February 8, 2014 @ 11:20 am

      • Russ, went back to the comment section of the good doctor’s newsletter today and found this… “Terri Reardon says:
        February 6, 2014 at 6:29 pm
        If I were a betting woman, I’d place a wager on the possibility that Dr. Edelberg did not enter this arena innocently, but rather with a nod to playing devil’s advocate. I always look forward to Dr. E’s weekly insightful posts. Further, I truly appreciate all of the dialogue this post has inspired. Thanks, especially, to Pete for your well-researched replies which clearly come from a place of passion on the subject. The video posted by Stefhan is well-worth a watch. Thank you all.”

        Now, I did source some other info about coconut oil and modern cereal grain processing in challenging the doc’s piece, etc… but everything regarding GMOs pretty much came directly or indirectly from your blog. So, a thanks to me is a thanks to you. I’m going to respond and tell her to spread the word about this dedicated revolutionary and his tireless work on this vital subject. Like I said before, ripples make waves. Now I better shuffle outside and get my hands dirty…

        Comment by Pete — February 8, 2014 @ 12:01 pm

      • Well, I still thank you and anyone for doing that work. We need lots more people doing it.

        I agree about the “not innocently” part, but the devil’s advocate is supposed to be someone who speaks up against the inertia of power, not for it.

        Have fun with the field work. Too frozen for me to get started on anything in the field, but I do still need to get my new seeds.

        Comment by Russ — February 8, 2014 @ 4:50 pm

  3. Pete, that is a hilarious title for a post, LOL!

    Comment by DualPersonality — February 8, 2014 @ 9:37 am

  4. […] just mentioned, and will be used overwhelmingly for CAFO feed.   As usual with these hoaxes (see last week’s “purple tomato” for another example), the goal isn’t necessarily even to commercialize this product. Rather, the idea of it does […]

    Pingback by GMO News Report 2/14/14 | Volatility — February 14, 2014 @ 12:51 am

  5. […] and agroecology. Two classic examples are those of “drought-resistant GM maize” and the “cancer-fighting GM purple tomato”. In both cases the product is a fraud, while information about the conventionally bred varieties […]

    Pingback by GMO News Summary 2/21/14 | Volatility — February 21, 2014 @ 3:03 am

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