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May 30, 2014

GMO News Summary May 30th, 2014

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*The third March Against Monsanto brought together hundreds of thousands of demonstrators  through thousands of actions worldwide. These dedicated days of action are tips of an iceberg which help the billions of dissenters worldwide see their cause out in the open and take heart that all of humanity is with them.
 
*The Global GMO-Free Coalition has launched. It plans to coordinate worldwide news and facts about GMOs and counteract the canned lies of the cartel.
 
*Earth Open Source has released a new, greatly expanded edition of its 2012 report, “GMO Myths and Truths”. The original version has been one of the resources I’ve consulted most often, especially where it comes to the health implications of GMOs.
 
*I’ve long said that when GMO labeling becomes mandated by law, it will still largely be up to citizen groups to be vigilant where it comes to compliance and enforcement. We can see an example of what we’ll be up against, and what’s needed, in a new report from the African Center for Biosafety, which has found a general flouting of South Africa’s GMO labeling requirements across most leading white bread brands. 
 
*An analysis commissioned by the Chinese Academy of Medical Science has found high levels of glyphosate and its breakdown product AMPA in imported soybeans and in food products derived from these soybeans.
 
*The Chinese study is part of the huge amount of work we need in order to fill in the abyss of negligence and fraud which pro-GMO scientism and regulation has created with its refusal to abide by even the most basic rules of scientific procedure and integrity. The story of how Monsanto’s Roundup Ready (RR) soybeans were approved for importation into Japan provides a typical example of this charlatanism of corporate researchers and regulators.
 
A research team within the Health and Welfare Ministry was allowed to assess the Monsanto application. It did so under severe time and logistics restrictions. They weren’t allowed to make copies and had to take notes by hand as they worked their way through the mountain of documents. It’s general Monsanto practice to submerge what little content there is in their “safety reports” under thousands of pages’ worth of empty bureaucratic loquacity. The reason for this becomes clear to anyone who does have the opportunity and fortitude to look for the substance, since the actual data raises red flags at all points. The research team found six major problems, each of which proves the claims of Monsanto and the regulator that RR soybeans are safe.
 
1. RR soybeans are not “substantially equivalent” (as the ideological jargon calls it) to the isogenic conventional variety. On the contrary, RR soybeans had elevated levels urease and lectin when toasted as they would be for food processing. These are respectively a potentially harmful enzyme and protein. Monsanto rigged the test by ordering the soybeans to be heated to ever-higher, unrealistic temperatures until these substances were finally destroyed, then submitted that as its official “result”.
 
2. Monsanto claimed to have sufficiently analyzed the transgenic soy proteins for allergenicity but in fact analyzed only 3% of the amino acid sequences, and then dogmatically declared that the rest of the sequnce in the soybeans must be the same as the sequence in the bacteria. The “analysis” thus cited the protein of the E. coli bacterial DNA which is inserted into the soybean genome, rather than the protein of the transgenic soybean DNA itself. 
 
3. Based on this “finding”, Monsanto then used the E. coli-derived proteins for all the animal tests, rather than the realistically relevant RR soybean proteins. This is a standard experimental fraud perpetrated by the GMO cartel and abetted by regulators. This same fraudulent procedure is routinely used for Bt varieties, where the Bt tested is derived from the bacterial source rather than from the actual Bt-expressing crop. One of the main bombshell results of the 1998 Pusztai experiment was his finding that transgenic lectin-expressing potatoes had toxic effects which did not manifest where rats were fed non-GM potatoes which were mechanically injected with the same lectin.
 
4. RR soybean-based feed was found to have considerably higher levels of residue of glyphosate and its breakdown product AMPA than was allowable under the EPA standards of the time. Indeed, in the document’s conclusion Monsanto openly expressed its intention to lobby the EPA to raise the allowable level of residue in order to encompass the levels which RR soy was bound to assimilate. And so the EPA did, and so all regulators always do – they raise the level of what’s called a “safe” poison concentration to whatever the corporate sellers need.
 
5. Meanwhile the RR soybeans used in animal feeding trials was not sprayed with Roundup! In addition to the other ways in which Monsanto rigs its feeding tests – using an irrelevantly short duration, measuring only industrial parameters like quick weight gain but not looking for symptoms of toxicity, introducing fraudulent “historical” data sets to drown out any evidence of toxicity which is forced upon the experimenters’ attention – this alone completely invalidates the results, since how can a combined transgenic/herbicide-sprayed system be assessed for safety if you don’t spray the herbicide?
 
6. In spite of all these experimental frauds, the male rat groups still showed statistically significant physical differences, which the regulator dogmatically declared to be of “no significance”. 
 
This is typical of how every kind of GMO was approved in every country where they have been approved. Never once, anywhere on earth, has any government performed or required a legitimate safety study of any GMO, nor has any corporation ever performed such a study.
 
(As we also see here, regulation of poisons like glyphosate is also a farce.) 
 
*Commenting on the people’s vote in Jackson County, Oregon to ban GMO cultivation in the county, Syngenta claims it’ll obey the law. Syngenta leases fields in the county where it grows its GMO sugar beet seeds. Of course this is not the same as pledging not to sue to quash this democratic outcome, and the company is being noncommittal about that.
 
Meanwhile officials in Josephine County are already talking about trying to weasel out of enforcing the law the county’s people just voted by a wide margin. County officials say they don’t know how to enforce the law in the face of state-proclaimed preemption powers. The answer, of course, is to go ahead and enforce it as written and deal with state attempts to override the results as those come up.
 
What they really mean is they don’t want to enforce the law, much like Maine’s attorney general openly said she doesn’t want to defend that state’s new GMO labeling law against any corporate lawsuit. She said she agrees with the “corporate speech” position.
 
So here’s another example of how activists for labeling or for bans will need not only to fight to get the measures legally in place, but will often have to fight to force recalcitrant officials to obey the very laws they’re supposed to represent.

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