Volatility

August 9, 2017

“Impossible”, i.e. Fake Food, Fake News, Fake Media, Fake Regulators, Fake Humans

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Corporate violence makes rivers of real blood flow

 
 
The New York Times has long been the premier purveyor of fake news, i.e. systematic lies, on everything from the Iraq War and “war on terror” to GMOs and pesticides to the housing bubble.
 
By now this corporate tabloid is so brazen that if you were to read a randomly selected paragraph from any issue you’d often have a hard time telling whether it came from a “news article” or the op-ed page.
 
 
Since the NYT’s coverage of genetic engineering is among the most corrupted, it’s unsurprising that an article has this corporate flackery and right-wing rhetoric spliced in:
 

Impossible Foods is finding out what happens when a fast-moving venture capital business runs headlong into the staid world of government regulation.

Investors like Bill Gates and Khosla Ventures have poured money into a variety of so-called alt-meat companies. Silicon Valley has noble goals, applying technological solutions to address major issues like climate change, farm animal welfare, and food security.

But food is not an app. It is far more heavily regulated by governments and much more heavily freighted with cultural and emotional baggage.

 
Ronald Reagan couldn’t have said it better. Of course the bit about Silicon Valley’s alleged goals goes beyond editorializing to being a flat out lie. The scribbler and her editors know perfectly well that Silicon Valley has no goals but profit and power and is just as opposed to real action on climate change, animal cruelty, and food security as the NYT itself is. This is proven by the fact that a core writing standard at the NYT is for reporters to regurgitate as “fact” whatever governments and corporations say about their own goals, regardless of how unevidenced or contrary to the evidence such claims are. In this case, the “journalist” goes even further and asserts the alleged goal on her own authority. This NYT paradigm, which is followed by the entire mainstream media, is a major constituent of how this media disseminates fake news.
 
Similarly, for corporate media like the NYT the most hysterical, hyperventilating exaltation of capitalism and high-maintenance technology (and the most shrill defenses of these) is considered the normal baseline while even the most moderate questioning or skepticism is branded “emotional baggage.” It’s like Chomsky’s observation that when the NYT says “the people” it means big corporations and the rich, and when it says “special interests” it means the people and the environment.
 
Oh, I almost forgot to mention what this is all about. You’ll have to forgive me, but by now all the particular GMO scams blur together into one fuzzy streak of lies and religious wingnuttery. Each new scam is just like all the preceding ones and musters the same canned lies which were completely refuted years, often decades ago. By now only the wicked and the morbidly, terminally stupid still support GMOs and genetic engineering. In this case, GM yeast generates a synthetic version of the heme protein found in soybean roots. This protein is then incorporated into synthetic vat meat to make it “bloody” like a rare hamburger. The target consumers are the kind of wingnut who wants a bloody meat look and texture but doesn’t want to eat real meat. Allegedly, many vegans fall into this bizarre category.
 
(The Gates Foundation is a big investor in this strange product which is certainly nothing but a boutique item. That’s exemplary of how all the Gates claims to philanthropic motivations are nothing but lies. On the contrary, this exemplifies how the Gates Foundation is motivated by nothing but profit, power, tax dodging, and technocratic religious fundamentalism. Bill Gates is the same as any other televangelist.)
 
This particular scam does engage some broader trends and pathologies. Is celebrating a literal blood-lust, just offering a substitute for real blood, the right way for vegans to go, in their personal actions and social advocacy? I condemn all forms of animal cruelty, not just the specially cherry-picked ones middle class vegans usually care about. Therefore it seems to me that it’s the blood-lust itself which should be criticized rather than appeased. There’s certainly nothing natural about it; it’s not “human nature”. Indeed, the blood-lust in eating bears an uncanny resemblance to the jingoism of chicken-hawks who have never been to war and would collapse in tearful hysterics at the thought of having to go to war personally. In the same manner, CAFO eaters never want to see how CAFOs and slaughterhouses work. Meanwhile I’ve read much that’s been written by farmers who perform their own slaughter, and though most enjoy meat, I’ve never read one who revels in the blood. Only some parasitic eaters do that. So to the extent we see vegans celebrating the “blood”, we see their affinity group.
 
(By no means do I mean to criticize veganism as such. I have great respect for vegans with political integrity, and animal cruelty is one of the several reasons I abominate CAFOs and call for the abolition of industrial agriculture. But I despise anyone who is nothing but a myopic, anti-political, generally ignorant “lifestyle” enthusiast whose objective action not only serves systemic evil but runs counter to their own alleged cause. This is the case with anyone who claims to care about animal welfare but opposes abolitionism and acts as a corporate operative, supporting any aspect of corporate agriculture and food. Like all agronomic, ecological, and socioeconomic crises, the crisis of the ongoing animal holocaust through factory farms, environmental poisons, and habitat destruction can be met only with a strong, coherent, disciplined, relentless movement for the abolition of corporate industrial agriculture in toto and the global transformation to agroecology and food sovereignty. But just as with the crocodile-tear climate criminals and de facto climate deniers, so any self-alleged animal welfare activist who claims to find common ground with the corporate onslaught is a liar and a fraud.)
 
As for the Impossible Foods, they’ve been wrangling with the FDA over the lack of taxpayer-funded, regulator-guaranteed advertising for their product. I’ve written before about the FDA’s fraudulent non-regulating “regulation” of GMOs, which literally is nothing more than a voluntary exchange of letters: The corporation asserts (it doesn’t need to provide any evidence at all) that its GM product is safe, and the FDA replies, “We acknowledge that you claim the product is safe.” That’s it.
 
The beef here is that Impossible Foods wants the FDA to go beyond this abdication. They want the FDA to state affirmatively that their blood-pack is safe to eat. So far the FDA has refused. (The EPA actually lies more aggressively than the FDA, which in this case prefers passive abdication.) Meanwhile Impossible has “self-affirmed” that its synthetic blood-letting proteins are safe by paying flacks impersonating scientists (they’re all contractors for Monsanto, DuPont, ADM, the Gates Foundation, etc.) to assert this, again with zero testing or evidence. Literally everywhere we look, whether it be to the government regulator, the corporations, the scientific establishment, or the mainstream media, we the same absolute lack of contact with reality – no testing, no evidence, literally nothing but lies made up out of thin air.
 
It would be rather comical, like a bad liar on a sitcom, if so much weren’t at stake: Page 1 of Impossible’s FDA submission has the usual rote citation of the FDA’s “substantial equivalence” religious dogma, while page 6 acknowledges that the GM product is a “novel protein”. (This self-contradiction is meant to justify the company’s patent. If the heme protein is “identical”, why should anyone be able to patent it? This kind of contradiction has been standard throughout the GMO/pesticide era. Dow even managed to spook the EPA, it was so brazen about denying synergistic pesticide effects in its regulatory application while celebrating them in its patent application.) Meanwhile their website touts the product as “identical” to what we eat in nature. Once again we see the congenital culture of the lie among technocrats.
 
 
GMOs are indeed impossible foods. Impossible to improve health and nutrition, impossible to improve food safety, impossible to improve food security, impossible for crop biodiversity, impossible for the soil, impossible for the environment, impossible for the good of farmers and communities, impossible for science and reason, impossible for any coherent human culture, impossible for animals, impossible. On the contrary, they’ve long been proven to be directly destructive of all of these values and goals.
 
 
 
PS. “I hacked my body for a future that never came”: This headline pretty much sums up all high-maintenance technological deployments. But this author and her self-mutilating brethren, with their “hi-tech” version of cutting, are especially mentally ill. Be aware of the level of physically violent dementia these creatures demonstrate.
 
 
 
 
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5 Comments »

  1. You are a brilliant thinker, I’m surprised you don’t get more traffic and comments here.

    I’m frustrated with the fast collapse, apocalyptic doomers. I’m not participating in their discussions anymore, they don’t know what they are talking about. They are dispossessed peons, thinking that somehow somebody out there is going to “get theirs” as the system unravels into mad max style anarchy.

    Wrong. Only the average American is getting it up the rear end. Exactly what they have done to so many around the world, for so many years. Chickens coming home to roost indeed.

    Comment by dolph — August 10, 2017 @ 10:35 pm

    • I agree, the notion that all the systemic horrors will, in the near future, quickly collapse is wishful thinking. Same for the notion that, if everyone just sits passively, doing nothing more than “prepping” on an atomized individual level (and usually not even doing that, just talking about it on the internet), the rising turbulence is likely to bring down the elites before it first further guts the people.

      That’s why I insist that the only way the people can navigate this turbulence with the best chance of adapting to the crises and minimizing the damage is to build the movement which will be simultaneously self-defense, preservation of what little can be salvaged from modernity, and most of all the vehicle of the necessary transformation on the basis of agroecology and other ecological evolutions which are necessary if humanity is to have a future at all. Right now humanity is reduced to the level of the original mammals skulking in the underbrush while giant reptiles still ruled the Earth. So far it looks like no one has any idea other than the remain in that state, even once the reptiles are gone.

      It’s also true that the stronger this human movement, the more effectively it can help hasten the downfall of the productionist corporate system. In the same way that economic factors will limit how much fossil fuels ultimately will be extracted and burned, so political factors can, if organized and deployed the right way (I don’t say they have been so far; on the contrary, almost all “political” people in the West today are morbid cultists of historically disproven electoralism), also limit this and other aspects of corporate power and ability to sustain itself. That’s one of the main reasons I’ve been so emphatic about the possibilities of fighting it out in the food and agriculture sectors.

      As for the low traffic and comments, I used to do much better when I wrote about Wall Street. That was also in the years immediately following the 2008 forced crash. More people were more radical, and it’s easier to condemn Wall Street than to think about our food and feel obligated to actually do something about it, where there’s so many opportunities for constructive action even right now (unlike with the finance sector, where it’s difficult to see where one could even get started with action).

      The other problem is how self-imprisoned everyone has become by social media. It’s a mass disease. But there’s enough of an historical record already to prove that no meaningful thought or action can get off the ground from social media. It can be used as a supplement to thought and organization cultivated elsewhere, as publicity media only. But ideas and initial attempts at organization can only be strangled in the cradle, if they try to arise on social media in the first place.

      But try telling that to people, try deprogramming them to get them off Facebook or Twitter and onto more human media platforms. It’s literally like talking to a wall – they won’t even reply to such a proposal, let alone try to make a rational argument. But then, that’s standard for all cultists today. (I say that in the full knowledge that the blogosphere missed its first big chance to be an incubator of new ideas, mostly because it too became dominated by system “reformists”. But I think the potential remains. I do think the internet has one last chance to be constructive for humanity, while there’s still enough grid electricity to power it and still enough flexibility and open space in the structure for independents and dissidents to evade censorship like Google’s and still effectively propagate a message so that large numbers of motivated users, and in certain cases like food even the unmotivated,. can register it. But this space, this frontier, is closing with increasing rapidity.)

      Comment by Russ — August 11, 2017 @ 3:22 am

      • I’m an internal medicine physician and not connected enough to food production to know too much about it. But what I can tell you from what I’ve seen: the sugar and food industry is getting people hooked on unhealthy foods and marketing them all over. The people then become obese and then, you guessed it, we in the healthcare industry jump in with all of our drugs and surgeries, not to make them healthier, but to drive them and the healthcare system to bankruptcy.

        First they are fattened up, then led to the slaughter. All very profitable to the system.

        And what do the people do about it? First they send Obama and the Democrats in to fix healthcare. Which they do alright…fix it for health insurance companies. Now destitute and faced with the healthcare tax, they then send in Trump and the Republicans to get rid of the system altogether and replace it with…yep, a completely private system just as good if not better for the insurance companies.

        As a middle class drone my sympathy for the people is not exactly high. Another reason for my frustration: being caught up in everything with little power to change anything from below or above.

        Comment by dolph — August 11, 2017 @ 5:25 am

      • I wrote quite a bit about Obamacare back in the old days.

        https://attempter.wordpress.com/series-on-the-health-racket-bailout-and-the-stamp-mandate/

        As for the Republicans today, my record of political prediction remains perfect. As soon as Obamacare passed I predicted that when the Reps gained the power to repeal it (my definition of “repeal”: get rid of it completely, reverting to the status quo ante), they would not do so. Instead they would keep it, fraudulently claim to be repealing it, but really just rename it and make it worse. And sure enough, that’s what they’re trying to do.

        Comment by Russ — August 11, 2017 @ 6:12 am

  2. Another good piece on this.

    http://www.howlatthemoon.org.uk/of-burgers-blood-and-balderdash/

    Comment by Russ — August 11, 2017 @ 7:56 am


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