October 18, 2017

For Some Definition of “Food”….



National Press Foundation president Sandy Johnson described on Twitter a “free 4-day reporting bootcamp,” of which Monsanto is the only for-profit corporation. Reached by Eater for comment, Johnson disclosed that the total donation amount across all four sponsors is $100,000, which covers conference costs for 20 journalists plus speakers and NPF staffers, including travel, hotels, meals, and NPF-branded tote bags, notebooks, and pencils. Johnson refused to provide the precise amount of Monsanto’s contribution, or to say whether sponsorship amounts were evenly or unevenly divided across the four organizations.

Johnson did say that she personally initiated the NPF’s sponsorship relationship with Monsanto after she found herself seated next to a member of the Monsanto board of directors at a dinner party in January. She also said that once Monsanto signed on as a sponsor, the NPF decided to locate the conference in St. Louis in order to include a visit to the company’s labs in their programming. When asked if she was familiar with Monsanto’s controversial reputation, Johnson replied, “In whose eyes? In your eyes? I’m familiar with the Monsanto that created research and science around agriculture that has allowed the United States to feed the world.”

We’re here to Feed the World. But before we do that we’re going to use all political, economic, military, and technological force to change your feeding needs. We’ll cleanse, engineer, and kill in order to eliminate your need for food, shelter, community, security, companionship, love, and happiness. Whatever’s left shall be that which subsists on what we choose to feed it. Then verily we shall Feed the World.

October 17, 2017

Two Favorite Quotes


AKA, “No, you follow me.”

I measure “favorite” here by how often the quote comes to mind and I smile ruefully and say “that’s true.”

1.The all-time champion remains a line I read in some political column or essay many years ago. I can’t recall the writer, outlet, or what he was writing about, but this line has stayed with me, constantly coming to mind:
“America is not permissive, it’s just promiscuous.”
That sums up perfectly the average American and all US institutions: Grossly self-indulgent where it comes to their own whims and crimes (often including violence), indulgent toward the whims and crimes of others they approve of, puritanical and censorious toward anything they don’t like, and in principle dismissive of such values as tolerance, minding your own business, live and let live, living in peace, even as they scream like stuck pigs the moment anyone impinges upon their sense of entitlement to all these things.
2. The challenger is a line from Freud’s essay “Dostoevsky and Parricide”. In contradistinction to the often profound political and religious philosophizing of his fiction, when Dostoevsky moonlighted as a regular political columnist he regressed to run-of-the-mill right wing fulmination. In dismissing Dostoevsky’s political position Freud calls it “a position which lesser minds have reached with smaller effort” (p. 177 in this scan).
How often I recall this, when I see all the hyper-educated “experts” and “intellectuals”, all pompously proclaiming their participation in this or that millennial intellectual paradigm, whether it be scientism, technocracy, neoliberalism, establishment versions of environmentalism and other causes, and yet their social and political vision invariably boils down to the same flat-earth worship of the system of money, “jobs”, temporal power, including regurgitating the same lies any half-assed mainstream media columnist is paid to spew. I assume as an axiom that 99.9% of Mensa members have utterly mainstream, mediocre political opinions. (Opinions, not even thoughts, let alone values.) Almost without exception these persons submit to the exact same bounds of political partisanship which are dictated to them by the mainstream media. All their learning, all their alleged intellectual principles, do nothing to give them even a single new idea.
This applies to the great majority of self-alleged “radicals” as well. They too constantly renew their devotion to all the main ideas and institutions of productionism and consumerism, however much it pleases them to sneer at “bourgeois” ideology (but their own ideology is bourgeois to the core) and arbitrarily to separate productionism into the two flavors of “capitalism” and “socialism”.* Of course many of them, come time for the kangaroo election (they also have no ideas beyond electoralism), tell the people to vote Democrat. I think Freud would agree that it never required intensive study of Marx to reach the position of “Hope and Change…I’m With Her”. I personally know plenty of utterly uneducated people who reached the same position, or its “Make America Great Again” flip side, with zero effort.
Of course most of these pseudo-educated elites are “lesser minds” themselves, mediocrities who had the grinder aspiration and the money to go to school. I’m applying Freud’s quote more to their grandiose ideological pronouncements more than to themselves. The point is that such grand intellectual projects, if they really possessed any of the integrity, profundity, and altruistic impulse their adherents claim for them, ought to better the minds and spirits of those who participate. But we see every day how there’s almost an inverse relationship between the grandiosity of the ideal and the gutter quality, intellectual and moral, of its practitioners and fanboys.
To come closer to Freud’s example of the steep drop-off in quality from Dostoevsky’s fiction to his everyday political opinionation, even where it comes to the few writers today capable of the true eagle’s eye perspective, those who speak profoundly about the soon-to-go-fully-kinetic crises of economics, energy, and ecology, they’re still prone to insist on self-indulging in “topical” political commentary where most of them immediately regress to the level of cranky right-wing bloggers. A decades-long spiritual training and intensive reading about the profundities of the relationship of ecology to the economy leads one to Archie Bunker-level political spewing about “the left”? Yes indeed, much lesser minds often reach that position with much less effort. (For real criticism of the left as offering no alternative to productionism and technocracy, one has to come to a site like mine.)
Perhaps the greatest irony of this culture is how the “Progress” ideologues are the most hidebound, intellectually stagnant, politically retarded epigones who are congenitally incapable of ever actually progressing to a new idea, a new vision. For them the laws of the world are never anything but the status quo forever. In many ways “progressives” are, objectively speaking, reactionaries in how they desperately cling to revanchist fantasies for things which long ago were disproved and/or destroyed forever, not to mention how meager their fantasies usually are. (To fixate on “bring back Glass-Steagal” manages the feat of being simultaneously nostalgic and lame.)
I think their parents who paid for all those university degrees should ask for their money back. All that investment of money, time, effort, all that “thinking”, and look at what the modern intellectual/political class comes up with: Straight parroting of all the most gutter “values”, lies, and ideological precepts of Mammon and the corporations, every last one of these a thousand times refuted. The modern intellectual is hidebound, stagnant, and stupid. The modern expert is a prostituted liar. I say we the people can do better.
In case anyone thinks I’m exalting novelty or radicalism for their own sakes, no. My total opposition to thoughtless reckless promiscuous technological deployment sufficiently refutes both. Nor is that the case with ideas. I call for propagating and enacting the new and necessary ideas. What’s wrong with productionism isn’t that it’s an old idea and institution, but that it’s proven destructive to humanity and the Earth. What’s wrong with “progress” isn’t that it’s antiquated, but that it’s long been disproven as at best a religious fantasy, more often an ideological lie. What’s wrong with liberalism and “vote Democrat” isn’t that it’s the same old thing, but that it’s long been proven ineffective and a malign scam. Those who still adhere to these disproven notions, claiming to be finding something new and possible in them, are liars and/or idiots.
The necessary new ideas, most of all the great need to abolish corporate industrial agriculture and globally transform to agroecology, are those needed to overcome and transcend these failed and destructive old notions and actions. That’s the one and only real kind of progress.
*This morning I read another piece exalting “science” from a “left” perspective. That means one denounces “Trump” and is indistinguishable from a partisan liberal. For this kind of scribbler, what’s wrong with de jure climate denial is that it’s an affront to the authority of “Science”, a kind of lese majestie. In reality, what’s wrong with any kind of climate denial isn’t that it’s intellectually “wrong”, let alone that it insults the majesty of Science. What’s wrong is that climate chaos already is profoundly destructive of humanity and the Earth and will become far worse. Denial of this and obstruction of real mitigation and adaptation measures comprise a crime against humanity and the Earth. That’s what’s wrong with it, not the liberal vs. conservative culture war part of it.
Such misdirection highlights how the de jure deniers are just one minority faction among the deniers. Far greater in number are the de facto deniers, who may “believe in” anthropogenic climate change and often claim to care about it, but whose actions prove they want no change in the status quo paradigms which drive climate change. They only tell various lies and propagate various scams in order to pretend they care and are doing something. These are the climate crocodiles, crying crocodile tears over climate change. They include the liberal hand-wringers, as well as the scientific establishment and its fanboys such as the author of the typical piece I linked above. All these persons and institutions systematically do their worst to drive climate change, even as they deplore it with empty words. This kind of denialism is far more pernicious than the de jure kind, since it reflects a much deeper Earth-destroying inertia.
For the climate crocodiles this hypocrisy driven by destructive inertia causes them to fixate on “Trump” even though ecologically destructive policy and ideology is the realm where, more than anywhere else, Trump is nothing but the continuation of the Clinton-Bush-Obama paradigm. And here is the best example of the pathology I mentioned above, where “leftists” decompose to become indistinguishable from liberals, often to the point of touting the Democrat Party, thus demonstrating their own indelible bourgeois character, to use one of their own favorite curse words.
All that education and ideological pomposity, and one still decries Trump’s affront to the Paris accord or the “corruption” of the previously public-spirited EPA. So-called lesser minds usually reach those positions with much less effort. It’s taken a bit more effort to work out the new and necessary ideas for a human future. We’ll see how much effort it takes to propagate and then realize them.

September 2, 2017

Renounce the Decadent Paradigm, Commit to the Ascent


Modern civilization’s scientific establishment comprises the incarnation of the corporate science paradigm. This is the usually unspoken (at least in the most honest, explicit form) but firmly enforced ideology and practice of modern science:
1. Science is reduced to technological development.
2. This technology must be high-maintenance in terms of wealth, complexity, secrecy, vulnerability, energy, and natural resources. Optimally, it maximizes destruction and waste.
3. This technology must be dedicated to goals of power, corporate profit, and in general manipulation and control.
Under this paradigm, to seek understanding is not part of science. At best this is a preliminary to the real activity of science, which is to seek manipulation and control. In the same way, science has no mission to serve humanity. Science is purely nihilistic from the point of view of human well-being. It has no mission beyond serving the power goals of elites, and beyond that a generalized manipulation/control imperative which is the core psychic trait of modern STEM practitioners, to the point that they comprise a fundamentalist cult called scientism.
This site will have nothing to do with trying to “reform” the existing science establishment. This establishment is what it is, the corporate science paradigm. On the contrary, this paradigm has to be superseded by an ecological science paradigm, arising from outside the system, which will liberate science from the cynics and psychopaths who have hijacked it, restore the desire for knowledge in itself as an integral part of human culture, and put science to the only proper use it can be put, the only proper use anything artificed by humanity can be put, human well-being.
As for the existing, institutionalized paradigm, it’s long been a truism that its cadres simply have to die off like the dead weight they are.

August 20, 2017

Odd and the End


The Corporate One-Party

*Example of a “historic climate victory”, according to Big Oil, the mainstream media, and US mainstream politics. Of course this is just one facet of the general corporate climate scam. The Paris Accord and its forerunners are broader scams.
For the handful who truly care about the climate crisis, there’s one and only one solution, both for mitigation and adaptation: Tremendously reduce GHG emissions, stop destroying carbon sinks, and rebuild sinks on a massive scale. Anything short of this is a lie.
*As for those liars, this is correct about Trudeau, and Australia’s Turnbull. Now let’s hear McKibben be honest about the exact same genre in the US, epitomized by Obama and Clinton. Such crocodile-tear climate criminals are vastly more pernicious and spiritually odious than the de jure Trump type.
*Amid its general shilling for corporate globalization, the corporate media especially loves CAFOs.
(To be fair, almost all Westerners love this Auschwitz-type system, including and especially the hypocrites who cry crocodile tears about animal welfare, climate change, and the environment.)
*Here’s some good books on what’s necessary. Regarding the fact that humans naturally are far more cooperative than competitive, I’ll add that one need only look at at how, even though in this society children are so intensively indoctrinated into the competition ideology, the system still requires such a massive, unrelenting campaign of propaganda, inducements, threats, and violence in order to get significant numbers of people to act in even a semi-competitive way. That right there proves what our truly natural cooperative tendencies are, and how readily we revert to them as soon as the artificial pressure lets up even a little. This Sodom and Gomorrah can’t keep it up much longer.
*This is true, and exactly parallel in every detail to GMO/pesticides and corporate industrial agriculture as such.
*According to the ideology of the car, Suburbs = Cities.
The ideology of the car is a malignancy which crosses all fake partisan lines and reveals the system’s “politics” to be an Earth-destroying, climate change-denying monolith. So there’s one litmus test which defines the real line: Is one for or against the model of “civilization” based on the barbarism of the personal car. Squabbles within the car paradigm, on the other hand, are nothing but fake politics.
*Here’s an important report from 2016 on how courtroom junk science stacks the deck in favor of bogus prosecutions. Just one of the many ways scientism is poisoning civilization.
*As always in the corporate media, corporate elite interests are represented as the only legitimate interests that exist. Therefore the only legitimate controversies, besides partisan political squabbling within the Corporate One-Party, are where oligopolists are at odds. As Chomsky wrote, when the New York Times says “the people” it means big corporations and the rich, and when it says “special interests” it means the people and the environment.
MacNeil: Thank you, Mr. Ginn and Jim. The secretary of the Committee for Regulatory Reform in Slavery is Eric Halfmeasure. Mr. Halfmeasure, give us the other side of the story.
Halfmeasure: Robin, I would like to make one thing perfectly clear. We are wholeheartedly in favor of slavery. We just see abuses that diminish productivity and reduce incentives for free men and women to compete in the marketplace. Lynching, tarring and feathering, rape, lack of holidays, and that sort of thing. One recent study suggests that regulation could raise productivity by 15 percent.
If only that really were a joke, but that’s a sober depiction of exactly how almost all mainstream media “debate” is done.
*Google’s part in the corporate media’s assault on reality-based journalism. Trump and the liberals, on behalf of their identical corporate masters, are in full collaboration against the people and the Earth.
*The New York Times continues to set the standard for fake news.
Speaking of that, and for those who have been shrieking idiotically about the fiction of Russian meddling in their phony election*: You mean like what your government, led by your Hillary Clinton, did in Honduras? You mean like what you did in Ukraine? (And where US liberals and the mainstream media are allied with a truly powerful neo-Nazi movement, no less.) You mean like what you’re doing right now to Venezuela, and your long, long record of manipulating elections and overthrowing governments all over the world? Fact is, no government on earth has remotely the record of such crimes as your US government, and the way your ilk now howls like a stuck pig over this (completely fabricated) allegation of foreign manipulation of one of YOUR phony elections is really rich. But then no one howls worse at getting a taste of their own medicine than fat, privileged, hypocritical, cowardly thugs like you.
[*Even if furriners did interfere in your kangaroo election, what difference would that make? It couldn’t make it any less fraudulent, since you’re already running a one-party system heavily rigged to keep any potential alternative off the ballot. Even your own con man Bernie Sanders was too much for you, precisely because he would’ve beaten Trump, who you all really wanted, as proven by your actions. That’s why the Democrat primary had to be specially rigged to steal the candidacy for Clinton.]
*Continuing with MSM abetting of fascism, here’s a good survey of the corporate media’s anti-democracy agenda which it deploys in the service of corporate technocracy and kleptocracy. One thing this leaves out is that the real affinity is between “mainstream” capitalism and the neo-Nazis. The historical record proves that the capitalist establishment, including liberals (i.e., pro-capitalist technocrats), publicize and empower fascism in proportion to how threatened by the exploited people this establishment feels.
Their entire system is based most fundamentally on war. War purely for its own sake, prior even to any power goal. This is proven by the fact that there is no politics left in mainstream US ideology. There’s nothing but partisan celebrity worship. Substantively, there is zero difference between the Democrat and Republican shades of the Corporate One-Party. Substantively, there is no difference between Trump and Clinton/Bush/Obama. On the contrary, Trump seamlessly continues along that exact vector.
*Good piece on the WWIII-mongers and fracking shills (the proximate profiteering purpose of the sanctions bill is to try to coerce Europe into dependency upon US fracked LNG). We see the most vile dregs among Democrats and Republicans coming together in their determination to utterly destroy humanity and the Earth.
*The liberal/neocon WWIII-mongers want nothing less than the complete destruction of human life itself. The most vile part is how it’s in the service of nothing but pure hypocrisy.
*How does one “bypass the Democrat party”? Exalt a con artist whose entire record has been to serve as a sheepdog for the Democrat Party! And of course these organizers also are such sheepdogs.
But seriously, any such notion to organize an honest-and-for-true-this-time progressive party is putting the party horse before the movement cart. History proves that once an electoral system is in the stranglehold of a de facto one-party system (this usually takes the form of a “two-party” scam), any attempt to cobble together a “third party” without first having built a solid, coherent cultural movement foundation, and then extruding the political party from this movement, is doomed to collapse or co-optation. Just look at what happened to the People’s Party, prematurely built on the culturally unripe foundation of the Populist movement in the 1890s. The movement felt forced into premature electoralism because only attainment of power could enable them to enact the subtreasury plan, which was necessary to rescue the Farmers’ Alliance co-op system which was being strangled economically by a total credit embargo on the part of the system banks. (We who are building the Community Food sector and Food Sovereignty have an advantage over the cotton farmers of Populism, in that as commodity farmers they remained dependent on the commodity system in a way we, who grow food for human beings, are not.) The new party was co-opted by the Democrats (the Democrat Party has been dedicated to destroying democracy for much longer than a hundred years now) and then pathetically died. The same is guaranteed to happen to any half-assed attempt to build a new party today, without first putting in the necessary hard work of building a true anti-system movement.

August 17, 2017

Which is Worst?


What all system education, and all system career paths, boil down to.

How to deal with those one hates and wants to destroy? There’s three basic modes of destroying humanity and the ecology. Each of these three modes has its direct practitioners and its support structure.
1. Kill them outright. This was the Nazis’ preferred “Final Solution”, and has been enacted in several other genocides. Ecological examples include campaigns to exterminate predators. Poison-based agriculture claims in theory to want total monocultural sterility and the total extermination of so-called “pests” and “weeds”. Similar anti-scientific theories of medicine and food safety also claim in theory to want the total extermination of all biology not specifically cultivated by man. (I say “in theory” because this paradigm’s record of failure and counterproductive results is so long-proven and complete by now, that we must assume its practitioners really want the opposite of what they claim. E.g., poisonism really seeks to maximize the destructiveness of agricultural pests and disease.)
2. Enslave them with the calculated goal of working them to death. The Nazi system made extensive use of this mode. Where it comes to natural resources and the ecology, most capitalists think and act this way by default. This is the way industrial agriculture practices upon the soil, crop biology and genetics, and the ecosystems upon which agriculture depends.
3. Enslave but conserve. This is the difference between a Nazi slave labor program and an antebellum US Southern cotton plantation. This is the allegedly “good”, paternalistic form of slavery and exploitation.
This is the utopia of all pro-capitalist reformism. It’s the ideology of conservatism/liberalism as such. This is the position of “moderates” within productionism, globalization, technocracy. In particular, this is the essence of the corporate version of every kind of social and environmental movement, and the NGOs which have helped the corporations co-opt those movements.
As for the ecological philosophy, science, and practice which rejects enslavement and exploitation completely, instead building the cooperative symbiotic ecological good of all humanity and the Earth, this paradigm is still only a seed today, especially in the West.
We won’t find it anywhere amid existing “politics”. If we want this revolution and restoration, we have to build it anew ourselves, completely from outside the existing system, in complete rejection of this system.

August 15, 2017

Science = War


The ultimate wet dream of the scientism cult. Of course by “peace” they really mean more war, always maximal war, forever.

(By that title I refer to the current STEM establishment, the body of practicing scientists and technicians. At any given time that’s the only meaningful measure of what “science” is. Other modes of scientific emphasis are possible, for example a body of scientists who truly would be devoted to peace and security. But today this doesn’t exist.)
Longtime corporate shills Scientific American now join the ranks of the WWIII-mongers.
Why, one might ask, would SciAm be running op-ed pieces by pro-corporate hacks dealing with purely political matters such as when it’s appropriate to use nuclear weapons*? The answer is, for the same reason they run op-eds about such purely political, non-scientific matters as GMO deployment: The procedure of technocrats always is to deny politics as such, and to claim that inherently political matters are really nothing but technical problems which call for purely technical solutions. This, of course, always implicitly supports the existing power structure, in our case the domination of corporations.
Thus we see how technocracy and the scientism cult are congenitally authoritarian, anti-political, and supportive of existing power arrangements. In particular, we see the near-complete dominance of the corporate science paradigm, wherein the scientific establishment sees science as such as nothing more or less than what the corporations say science is. Publications like Scientific American are the propaganda vehicles of this paradigm.
*There is, of course, no conflict between the US and North Korea other than the one driven by US imperialism. It’s overwhelmingly the US which “rattles its saber” all over the world, and other countries can only do their best to respond, or else knuckle under. The US is the overwhelming destroyer of global security, and not just a “potential threat to global security”. Other countries can only respond or submit to the destructive chaos. And of course the reason why the US is the great destroyer of all security including its own is because the totalitarian wealth-concentrating drive of the US government, multinational corporations, and the 1% constantly requires this campaign of total destruction. End this evil and destructive campaign, and everyone could enjoy security. Continue with it, the way SciAm and its scribblers wish, and no one can be secure.
As for the Korean peninsula, the one and only solution is the same as for the Middle East and Africa: West Get Out. Most of all, US Get Out. Anything else is a destruction-seeking lie.

August 9, 2017

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


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.

June 3, 2017

Abolition Movement Part Three – The Daily Action of Pioneers

Filed under: American Revolution, Mainstream Media, Reformism Can't Work — Tags: — Russ @ 1:10 pm


Parts one and two.
The first step in building a movement is to form pioneer organizations which assemble a solid core of people who are fully conscious of a coherent set of ideas and who are committing their lives to fighting for these ideas. I’ve committed my life to abolishing corporate agriculture.
I’m not saying “MY writings = abolitionism”, in the sense that I personally claim to be some great writer or anything. But the principles and deductions I write about, and the organizational, tactical, and communications standards I insist upon, comprise the necessary ideas and actions upon which any such movement has to be built.
1. For any activism to be worthwhile it has to fight for the necessary goal. The uncompromising goal: The total abolition of poison-based agriculture, in particular pesticides and GMOs (for starters). Strategy and tactics then follow from this goal. Partial steps could be acceptable, but only on the vector toward total abolition, never counter to it. Therefore the basic necessity at all times is to develop and express the firm, disciplined, cumulative abolitionist philosophy and goal.
What this group might do.
2. Research and reporting to the group: We must master all existing knowledge on poison-based agriculture and keep up with it in real time as new knowledge is found. Group members would divide the research and reporting labor. Learn it all inside and out – its health harms, its environmental devastation, its agronomic failure (the pesticide/GMO treadmill), its physical unsustainability, its malign effect on farming consolidation and farming economics, the way it distorts politics and economies, the way it has hijacked and discredited science, corporate lies, fraud, and secrecy, regulator dereliction, cover-ups and lies, everything. This research is done always toward the goal of applying all knowledge to the abolition fight.
If the expertise and means are at hand, we shall create knowledge ourselves. Original study and reporting.
We do the research necessary for all of this according to a division of labor. All the facts to date have been compiled by various sources. Our job is to take all this raw material and deploy it according to the abolitionist idea. We’ll then want to keep abreast of all the new information. We do this according to assigned jobs. Each member commits to research and writing on a specific aspect, all according to the abolitionist analysis. E.g. one person can be in charge of reporting on superweeds/bugs; another on GM contamination; health harms; political and regulatory developments; scientific fraud, etc.
3. We need our own writers. The existing system is not abolitionist, and writers within it are still part of the corporate/consumerist system and still are committed to reform and “co-existence” with Monsanto. They comprise a loyal opposition, “constructive criticism”. Therefore we need original writing on all the main topics. The writing is the abolitionist analysis and call to action.
In everything, we need to move from passive reception of information to active combination, deployment, and propagation of it. Most of all we the people need our own organizations, our own writers.
4. We must propagate our own abolitionist writing. Propagation is a group responsibility. We’ll help one another propagate this writing across the broader media, through submitting pieces for publication and/or linking them everywhere. For starters, mostly websites: Those with anti-GMO/pesticide focus, those with focus on organic and local food, amenable political sites, religious, etc. We have to get our writings published as far and wide as possible, all under a clearly recognizable abolition banner. We need relentless, disciplined publicity for our “brand”, online and where applicable through fliers etc.
The pioneer organization must organize all the facts and truths into a comprehensive, politically potent, relentlessly propagated campaign. Members need to commit to specific research and writing tasks, and the organization needs unified action to propagate its writings, first in the “alternative” media, eventually toward the mainstream, and counterattack the enemy in the mainstream media. This should focus especially on the targeted demolition of fraudulent scientists and journalists.
5. We’ll organize ourselves as an online wolfpack. This will be planned, synchronized group commentary at mainstream media comment threads and at other important sites. We must stop letting the organized liars face only disorganized, often less-knowledgeable ad hoc opposition. We’ll counterattack them with the fully erudite, philosophically coherent, organized, disciplined truth. We must reply in a strong, organized way to corporate media pro-poison propaganda and hatchet jobs on campaigners, scientists, and scientific bodies like the IARC.
The wolfpack will have a coherent line of counterattack against each type of lie so we’ll all be on message with the best evidence in the most tactically effective communication styles. The group will be ready with the best links, preferably to our own abolitionist publications, to resources refuting the particular lies as well as resources explaining why and how the mainstream media is inherently untrustworthy and always lies, and why and how government regulators are inherently untrustworthy and always lie.
In the same way, we’ll always present the affirmatives of agroecology and food sovereignty. Even the most cogent criticism of an entrenched, still intact status quo is bound to be ineffective unless it’s coupled with an attractive, compelling alternative affirmative vision.
So we’ll have planned wolfpack actions against media pieces which exalt poisonism and/or attack critics, especially where the comment threads are dominated by pro-poison activists.
Propagandists are of great importance to the enemy. Therefore we can also have planned actions where we counterattack a specific propagandist, a false scientist or journalist. These are the fraudulent cadres who must be discredited. We must condemn false scientists and false journalists for all their lies and all their crimes. We’ll research and demolish them.
We can discuss possible actions, vote if necessary, then commit to the coordinated action, each member with a particular responsibility. One person can focus on the target’s specific lies, another on the money they’ve been paid by the cartel, another on demolishing the fraudulent “environmental” or other groups which amplify the propaganda, etc.
We agree ahead of time who has responsibility for which aspect, though we all speak the same line. During an action we focus on particular points and stay on point.
6. As we recruit pioneers within our localities and extend the organizations into real space, we can start public discussion groups with monthly meetings, hold public meetings, give lectures and presentations, always from the abolitionist perspective.
7. In all these publicity endeavors the three goals are: To educate the public about poisonism; to force into the public consciousness the idea of the need for abolition and how easily doable it is, getting people to be aware of this idea and to remember it, whether or not they initially agree with it; and then to convince people to agree with, support, and fight for the abolition goal. See Part Two.
8. We can participate in pressure campaigns on municipalities, manufacturers, and retailers, and launch such campaigns ourselves. Friends of the Earth and other campaign groups have shown what can be done through their campaigns to get retailers to pledge not to sell GM salmon or not to use GM potatoes and apples, or to stop using neonics on their products. Recently such cities as Barcelona and Edinburgh have responded to campaigns with pledges to phase out glyphosate use. Same for some retailers in France and Germany. Germany banned the surfactant POEA from glyphosate formulations sold within the country. (It’s still included in Roundup everywhere else.) If they can be driven to ban POEA, they can be driven to ban glyphosate as such.
Abolitionists support these campaign goals in themselves, and a dedicated abolition group would also always use every such campaign as an occasion to publicize the need for total abolition.
9. In all these endeavors, the group seeks as much as possible to speak directly to the people. When the group speaks to establishment media it does so in a way calculated to be channeled as clearly to the general public as possible. While we welcome the adherence or sympathy of any kind of professional or establishment type, we do so only on an abolitionist basis, never in terms of modifying ourselves to be more “respectable” or “acceptable” to any element of the establishment. This doesn’t mean chaos, on the contrary it means an organized, disciplined adherence to ecological philosophy and science, the abolitionist philosophy, and the abolitionist goal.
So there’s a brief sketch of the kind of small, grassroots action group which could launch itself with minimal resources except for the time, energy, and commitment of its members. If it did its job well then growth and greater resources would follow, but it must never drift from its grassroots nature rooted in ecology, democracy, positive freedom, and abolitionism.
This template could be applied to other kinds of abolitionist campaigns.
For many reading this, this wouldn’t require them to leave their computer screens nor to take extra time from where they’re already reading about GMOs and pesticides anyway. It would only require a change of focus, to a more organized, focused, active, disciplined, cumulative mode. This will be an evolutionary step forward for the movement. If you’re spending several hours a day as it is, spend those hours this way.
I’ve thought of starting my own FB group which would require the active participation of members, each member committing to taking on a particular responsibility for research, writing, propagation, and/or online action.
But we need a website for this. It can’t be organized primarily through social media. No organization has ever gotten started on social media. Social media is a death zone for any kind of organizational work. On the contrary, social media can be only a supplement to a coherent organization based in a more stable, substantive format. So we need to get a website going as home base for publication and for real, substantive discussion (which never happens on social media). It’ll link to all relevant resources and include on every page prominent links to our most basic manifestos: Why Abolitionism is Necessary; the Great Agroecological Transformation; as well as refutations of the most virulent big lies of poisonism, especially GMOs Cannot “Feed the World”, GMOs = Famine and Pandemics, GMOs Have Nothing to Do With Science; GMOs are Anti-Science, etc.
So there’s some ideas on how to get started. All the great movements of history had similar small beginnings, and all began by propagating a new idea.
Help propagate the abolition need.

May 31, 2017

Abolition Movement Part Two – Basic Goals for Organization


In Part One we sketched the need for an abolitionist movement built from the soil up, from completely outside the existing political system, toward goals and a way of life contrary to those of this psychotic, homicidal and suicidal system. What are the basic operations and goals of this movement?
It’s not possible to “stop” the corporate system as long as the fossil fuel, environmental, and organizational basis of its power remains intact. The purposes of starting right now to build a pioneer movement for the abolition of poison-based agriculture and for the spiritual and cultural affirmatives of the new Earth are more evolutionary and cumulative, with an eye toward the long run. But this still requires hard work in the here and now.
1. The movement must propagate the new and necessary ideas. Humanity needs a dedicated abolitionist organization whose first goal is to sow in the public consciousness ideas of the need and practicability of abolishing poison-based agriculture and building the complete economy based on agroecology and food sovereignty. Toward this goal we must speak to those who already feel these things to varying extents, to further radicalize each from whatever level they’re currently at, toward the full abolitionist consciousness. [Definition of abolitionist consciousness: Implicit acceptance and avowal of the need for total abolition; total commitment to this goal no matter how long it takes and no matter what’s necessary to attain it. Therefore complete flexibility and lack of bias with regard to strategy and tactics.]
Almost no one knows yet about the need to do this and the fact that it can be done right now. Most people have no idea that there exist far better alternatives to industrial agriculture, globalization, the finance sector, etc., that all these things are destructive rather than constructive, and that there’s no physical basis for the future of this system. There’s no substitute for fossil fuels; the soil and ecology as a whole cannot sustain the exploitative and destructive status quo. So we must propagate the ideas into the general public consciousness. At first this isn’t primarily to “persuade” anyone, though to whatever extent that happens it’s a fringe benefit. Rather, the primary goal is to make people aware that the alternative ideas exist, so that when history brings a radical change in the situation and large numbers of people suddenly become ready for a radical political change, they’ll know where to go.
Agroecology is a fully demonstrated science and set of principles ready for full global deployment, as soon as humanity evolves the will to do it. Therefore the first task is to make these ideas fully public. From there food sovereignty and poison abolitionism can start building a true social and cultural movement toward active political goals.
So the first task is to make these ideas part of the public consciousness, even if at first most people don’t take them up.
2. The movement must build the new within the old. Especially agroecological practice and the community food economic sector, but also whatever else is possible in other sectors. We must defend this rising economic and agronomic movement against the government’s increasingly aggressive attempts to suppress it. This is an economic necessity for the flourishing of truly organic farming and food processing and distribution restored to their rational regional basis. (Almost all food production and distribution is done naturally and rationally on a regional or local basis.) This is a physical necessity since it’s necessary to preserve as much of the agricultural and wild germplasm as possible for the future basis of agriculture. In the same way it’s necessary to preserve as much of the still-living arable soil as possible and to start rebuilding the soil wherever possible, starting right now. It’s also the ongoing empirical and scientific process of building our agroecological knowledge and expertise. All this is already happening. It needs greatly to expand and to become fully conscious of itself as a world-changing movement.
3. The movement must prepare for the time, which will come unpredictably but can start accelerating at any time, where the basis of corporate global power begins to erode in earnest. We must be ready to act in any way possible as this proceeds. Even now I think there’s several potentially powerful wedge campaigns we could run which could help to break up existing political alignments, in particular the overall fear and loathing of poisonism.
4. This movement comprising the pioneering abolitionist organizations must build itself as the skeleton of a future mass movement, which will cohere when the masses to whom we previously propagated the new and necessary ideas suddenly become ready to take up these ideas and commit to them. That’s when the abolitionist and ecological movement (by “ecology” meaning not just the physical environment but economy, politics, spirit, culture) will have its first great chance to transform the Earth. That’s also when it’ll be humanity’s one and only option, other than the mass starvation and pandemics locked in to the status quo path.
There’s the overall strategy. In Part Three we’ll sketch a plan for the day-to-day actions of pioneer abolitionists.
Help propagate the abolitionist need.

May 11, 2017

The “New” Old Monsanto, Attempting a Cult Revival


For all its current power Monsanto has a bleak future. In a sector scrambling to consolidate because its real opportunities for the future are increasingly constrained, Monsanto is especially vulnerable. The company is dependent upon Roundup for about 70% of its revenues. Roundup accounts for half its sales, while GMOs dependent upon it make up much of the rest. That’s why Syngenta had little interest even in Monsanto’s GMO business. In 2015 the entire world learned for keeps what campaigners, Monsanto, and regulators have long known, that glyphosate causes cancer. With the WHO’s announcement the clock is now ticking, counting down the rest of glyphosate’s legal life. The people will now slowly but surely force the complete ban of glyphosate-based poisons. The bell is tolling for Roundup, Monsanto knows it, everyone knows it. They must find new products or die. They’re hyping everything in sight, from slapping new ad slogans on old, pointless, narrow-market products to touting the idea of RNA interference GMOs. But if these ever came to market they’d still be the same kind of shoddy insecticidal GMOs which in Bt form are already a failure with a gradually diminishing market.
The structural reason driving the current consolidation is that GMOs are a shoddy product and don’t have much of a market or a future in themselves. On the contrary, there’s a growing consensus inside and outside the sector, including on Wall Street, that the pesticides remain primary, with the GMOs being secondary to these and dependent upon them. Their fundamentals are bad. In other words the finance sector now agrees with what GMO critics have said from the start, that GMOs in the real world are nothing but pesticide plants, poison plants. Although Wall Street is poor at acknowledging its own pyramid schemes, it knows how to call them out in other sectors. GMOs are a scam.
By now all the GMO cartel has is the hype and hoaxes of the pro-GM activists and the corporate media. Monsanto in particular is desperate to tout its new GMO campaign, and with media fanfare is licensing two CRISPR “gene editing” processes. Monsanto’s Roundup business is seen as having a highly questionable future, and in all the merger talk the only thing which has really interested anyone is the company’s potential to develop GM traits other than those based on glyphosate. Here we see Monsanto desperate to reassure skeptical Bayer shareholders. Indeed, the hype over “new GMOs” may continue fooling the business world for awhile, but hype is all it is. As a practical way for the GMO project to get on track and start delivering on its promises, the retread GMOs are a vain ploy and a malign lie.
Here’s all anyone needs to know about CRISPR etc., the whole false notion of a retread “second generation” of GMOs based on “gene editing”, RNA interference, and similar tricks: These retreads are the same failed technology, the same failed GMOs, the same failed mode, the same failed agricultural paradigm based on poison, guaranteed to have the same result as all prior pesticides and GMOs. Pests will quickly overcome it, it will function only on the same ever-accelerating pesticide treadmill which already spins endlessly, it will poison people, animals, and the environment, and it will contaminate non-GM crops and wild plants. It’s not possible to be mistaken about any of this. Indeed, these are proven to be intentional primary effects of every technology deployed as part of poison-based agriculture. As its name says, this is the project of maximizing the production and use of poisons in order to maximize the poisoning of people and the Earth. All of this is being done for its own sake, as well as for the sake of profit and power. All of it is disguised with the lie that any of it has anything to do with producing food.
By now all we have are conscious, willful liars on the one hand, vast amounts of gratuitous, self-willed ignorance on the other, with a few scattered truth-tellers who recognize the clear facts.
The health dangers of the retread GMOs are the same as for the old GMOs. Scrambled genomes, insertional and tissue culture mutations, and the effects of these: A gene producing too much or too little of a protein with toxic or other ill effects, producing the wrong protein with toxic effect, producing a misfolded protein with toxic effect (Mad Cow disease is caused by a misfolded protein), toxically excessive or foreign metabolites, gene or cell damage leading to cancer or any number of other health destructions, “silencing” the genes of humans who come into contact (topical, inhaled, ingested) with the RNAi pesticide, and any number of other predictably unpredictable chaotic effects. The retread GMOs are the same as the old GMOs.
In the same way the health dangers are the same as for any other pesticide. The engineers and propagandists have no more idea how genotoxic, hormone disrupting, neurotoxic, organically toxic, and carcinogenic the RNAi pesticides will be than they originally had for the other classes of pesticides, all of which proved to be lethal to humans in all these ways. To put that another way, they know perfectly well that the RNAi pesticides will almost certainly have the same effects that all other pesticides have. The new pesticides are the same as the old pesticides, and will fail against pests and poison people in the same way the old ones always do.
It’s not possible to be mistaken about any of this. These are all known facts.
Of course the “new” retread GMOs are designed to aggravate the socioeconomic and political evils of corporate agriculture and commodity-based production the same way all previous GMOs were designed. Just like all prior GMOs, the goal of the retread GMOs is to starve the world in order to feed a handful of gluttons.
All the hype surrounding the new GMOs is based on the junk science of genetic determinism, same as for the old GMOs. In both cases the facts are:
1. On the most basic factual level, the engineers and their supporters have no idea what they’re doing. Jonathan Latham writes,

[The industry and media’s] exposition is belied by the evidence. If CRISPR were already precise, accurate and specific there would, for example, be no publications in prominent scientific journals titled “Improving CRISPR-Cas nuclease specificity using truncated guide RNAs“. And these would not begin by describing how ordinary CRISPR “can induce mutations at sites that differ by as many as five nucleotides from the intended target”, i.e. CRISPR may act at unknown sites in the genome where it is not wanted (Fu et al., 2014).

…[I]t is technically not possible to make a single (and only a single) genetic change to a genome using CRISPR and be sure one has done so (Fichtner et al., 2014). As Fichtner noted “in mammalian systems Cas9 causes a high degree of off-target effects”…There is, furthermore, no guarantee that more precise versions of CRISPR are even biologically possible. Technically therefore, precision is a myth: no form of genome editing can do what is currently being claimed.

2. In addition to their complete ignorance of ecology and agronomy, they know nothing about the science of genetics or biology. To believe in genetic determinism requires ignorance of even the most basic elements of the state of the science. Here’s Latham again.

[A] defined, discrete or simple pathway from gene to trait probably never exists. Most gene function is mediated murkily through highly complex biochemical and other networks that depend on many conditional factors, such as the presence of other genes and their variants, on the environment, on the age of the organism, on chance, and so forth. Geneticists and molecular biologists, however, since the time of Gregor Mendel, have striven to find or create artificial experimental systems in which environmental or any other sources of variation are minimised so as not to distract from the more “important” business of genetic discovery.

But by discarding organisms or traits that do not follow their expectations, geneticists and molecular biologists have built themselves a circular argument in favour of a naive deterministic account of gene function. Their paradigm habitually downplays the enormous complexities by which information passes (in both directions) between organisms and their genomes. It has created an immense and mostly unexamined bias in the default public understanding of genes and DNA.

Where this isn’t willful lying, it’s the common mode of being seduced by a crackpot version of “scientific method”. They reify these ivory tower experimental conditions of limited usefulness into the lie that these are real conditions which give real knowledge.
The primary lie making up the marketing campaign for the retread GMOs is that they’ve been made with extra-special “precision”. The propaganda theme that the retread GMOs have been engineered with precision is the exact same lie as the theme that the old GMOs were the result of precision engineering. In reality all genetic engineering is an extremely sloppy, wasteful, scattershot empirical process relying on brute force and massive reiteration to produce an adequate result once in awhile. Genetic engineering and its results is best represented by the proverbial stopped clock which is correct twice a day. So it’s been for all GMOs to date, and so it is for the “new” GMOs.
In itself, precision is only as intelligent or moronic as allowed by the extent of one’s knowledge. Latham gives a good analogy: “Suppose, as a non-Chinese speaker, I were to precisely remove from a Chinese text one character, one line, or one page. I would have one hundred percent precision, but zero control over the change in meaning. Precision, therefore, is only as useful as the understanding that underlies it.” In reality, even legitimate science knows little about the details of genomes and next to nothing about the chaotic genome effects of genetic engineering. When we add to this ignorance of the details and repercussions the engineers’ junk science of biological determinism and their complete ignorance of the state of genetic and biological science, we see how even if they did have a precision technique they’d still have absolutely no idea what they were doing. They’d be firing with good marksmanship into a soundless, pitch black void. But to say again, they have no precision technique either. They’re really hurling handfuls of gravel into that void.
The “precision” lie is a core article of the religious faith of scientism, going back centuries to the de jure Christian roots of the engineering ideology. Although engineers and scientists have never had such precision control of anything, they’ve always prayed to themselves and lied to the world that they did possess such precision knowledge and control. Here again, the hype about CRISPR is just the latest incarnation of the most hackneyed lies. Here too it’s not possible to be mistaken. Anyone familiar with the history of science and engineering, especially the history of pesticides and GMOs, knows the lie by heart.

Technologies based on the reductive, poisonist junk science like genetic engineering, artificial intelligence, synthetic “life”, robotics, nanotech, geoengineering and others share the fantasy of the engineer exercising total control through the precision use of control technologies and engineering techniques. Science has seldom been more than a servant of this cult religion of control. More often than not the process by which these technologies are developed has little to no “precision” involved, but is a very messy process based on profligate, wasteful deployment of brute force empiricism toward whatever approximate result is “close enough” in practice as long as it can be transformed through the fantasy into an idea of precision. In the same way, as a rule these technologies don’t work in the real world. The real world performance of GMOs ranges from temporarily adequate as long as supported by the most lavish, expensive panoply of inputs – bank credit, machinery, fertilizer, irrigation, pesticides – to a complete disaster from the start. Nowhere on Earth have GMOs ever consistently performed as well as the much healthier, much less expensive true crops. But as long as cheap oil, industrial inputs, and corporate welfare can provide enough brute force to keep GMOs in the field at all, this is enough for the scientism cultists and their fanboys to fetishize GMOs into a transcendent religious ideal.
When we consider the origin and circumstances of the STEM cadre this cultism isn’t surprising. STEM disciplines attract the most hierarchically-oriented, authoritarian, reductive, order-obsessed types who are also the most alienated from physical (ecological) reality and at the same time possessed of the most intense religiosity. In the modern era scientism and “Progress” have presented themselves as secular civil religions, but this pseudo-secularity is just a temporary variation on the Christian millennarian roots of technology worship and science ideology. For over 900 years inventors and practitioners of engineering and science explicitly saw themselves as imitating Adam in the Garden of Eden, creating in the image of the Creator, becoming co-Creators with God, and as preparing the human condition for the Second Coming. To this day these apocalyptic religious themes remain explicit and normative among aerospace and weapons engineers. It’s also standard rhetoric among AI cultists and “transhumanists”.
The explicit Christian rhetoric is also common among genetic engineers and GMO cultists, and the transcendent tone, evangelical attitude, and warnings/hopes of the imminent apocalypse are exactly the same. It’s the same millennarian Christian religiosity, even where temporarily submerged by civil religious ideology.
Given this extremist interior, the fact that the engineers usually must function as lower-level cogs in the corporate machine, obeying the dictates of executives and marketers, the whole endeavor just a subdivision of the much more comprehensive Mammon religion, must bother them. To give just one example, Lords of the Harvest describes the initial cultural conflict at Monsanto between the high-flown fantasies and pretensions of the genetic engineering division and the agrochemical division, which the genetic engineers at first disdained as a gang of backward luddites. It was only after the GE division put up a perfect record of failure over years of very expensive confusion that they finally lowered their sights and began working on poison plants. (They failed at this too; one day soon I’ll write a piece documenting Monsanto’s near-perfect record of failure and theft.)
When we put all this together, it’s no wonder the techno-cultists exalt the fantasy of precision and control and keep telling themselves and the world lies about it. And although they continue to tell these lies about the GMOs which have been deployed so far, at the same time they implicitly admit they were always lying about these when they hype the alleged “new” kinds of GMOs, even going so far as to deny these GMOs are GMOs, which also disparages the existing types. They’re trying first to convince themselves that this time the “precision” really is precise, the “control” real control. But it’s all nothing but a retread of the same old lies, same old failures, same old bottleneck.
Most profoundly, we see in these phenomena some of the sources of the indelible culture of the lie among technocrats and scientism cultists. Humanity should have demanded of the very first scientist, “What is Truth?” The idealization of some notion of Truth, which is touted as the ultimate justification of science, originated in Christian theology and to this day remains a religious justification. Scientific “Truth” is therefore Truth as revealed by religious transcendence. As the engineers and scientists constantly say, with their technology they seek to transcend reality – the environment, biology, mortality, the irrationality and emotionality of human beings, the physical Earth. Their will to truth means the will to another world, an otherworld, an afterworld. Their will to truth must go hand in hand with the cult of technology. This means their “Truth” has always been purely instrumental. So from both directions – Truth as a theological article, and Truth as whatever idea of control technology is able to effect, right down to boosting profit margins – the culture of the lie is inherent in the technological version of Truth. As with all fundamentalist cults, the scientism cult recognizes only its transcendent ideal and its day to day empirical work, but displays absolute faithlessness toward any and all day to day measures of fact or truth. As for science itself, for the STEM cult this is nothing but an appendage of instrumental engineering. At best it can sometimes serve as a methodological guide, but is most commonly a propaganda facade. Just as the pseudo-democratic, pseudo-political ideology which has supplanted classical liberalism is called “neoliberalism”, so bona fide science has become a fraudulent “neoscience” completely engulfed within the corporate science paradigm of today’s STEM establishment. Between this mercenary hijacking and the religious basis of science as such, there’s little left of the exalted, allegedly rationalistic Enlightenment mythology. It’s the practicing engineers and scientists themselves who present the most extreme manifestation of human irrationalism and human emotionalism, as well as malignity, faithlessness, and absolute practical nihilism. But in their minds they dwell in a cloud city presided over by their own god. They see their task as to wipe out the ecological reality of the real Earth and humanity and replace it with a technology-dominated co-Creation between themselves and this god. If humanity is to survive, we must put a stop to them.
Thus Monsanto’s media advertorials for its future CRISPR projects are more than just typical corporate media hype. Underlying this is the will of the cult to arise from the muck of the bogged-down GMO/pesticide project and transcend on the wings of the gloriously retreaded “new” version of the same old anti-scientific, failure-mongering notions. In the end the CRISPR hype is still just hype, still just the same old lies. But the goal is far more than just propping up the stock price. The goal is to reinvigorate the flagging religious crusade. In the end, since Monsanto has no practical basis for future profit and power, it hopes to harness the power of religion to keep itself on top.
Help propagate the necessary actions.
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