Volatility

March 24, 2018

Fight the Right Target (Animal Activism Case)

>

For those who truly want to liberate animals, humanity, and the Earth, THIS is the target, not small farms

 
 
According to the Farm-to-Consumer Legal Defense Fund (FTCLDF), animal rights activists launched an action against Long Shadow Farm in Colorado. I haven’t personally been to Long Shadow, but based on the tactics described in the article, the farm’s website and the imprimatur of the FTCLDF it looks like they’re the kind of small pastoral farm which must be the basis of all healthy, humane and ecological animal farming for the Food Sovereignty movement.
 
Therefore it’s an unfortunate clash where animal activists who ought to make their focus the abolition of CAFOs choose instead to target such a small, benevolent operation. Of course from the point of view of the more extreme form of animal welfare, any kind of husbandry automatically is bad. (Though I’ve never heard a coherent prescription from any of them; in my experience the vast majority of animal activists are grossly ignorant about food, agriculture*, economics, and probably ecology as well – for most it’s a typical boutique “cause”, like Prius-driving, luxury vacation-flying “climate activists”.) But even they, if they have any sane sense of magnitude, must agree that a CAFO is infinitely more cruel than a small pasturage. And they must also agree that CAFOs must be abolished, not only on the moral ground that they’re literally the equivalent of the Nazi death camps, but also on critical ecological, agronomic, socioeconomic, and public health grounds, all crises where small pasturages are, at the very least, doing no harm.
 
Therefore I have to question the sincerity and, probably, the physical courage of activists who would duck away from taking on the big corporate target in order to attack the much easier, shall we say softer small farm target. I also wonder another thing. Most animal welfare types display a great enthusiasm for commodity industrial agriculture. Specifically, they usually tout as their “solution” that corporate industrial grains should be used as “food for people” instead of as CAFO feed. This demonstrates a perfect ignorance of capitalism in general and agribusiness in particular, which depends upon CAFOs as the subsidized “demand” for the overproduced grain. This is innate to capitalism and to productionism as such. Conversely, the kind of system which maximizes industrial grain in the first place would never focus on food for people as its goal, since this goal does not serve to maximize power, profit, and destruction. I’ll also observe that such a prescription highlights the activists’ lack of concern for the plight of agricultural workers and the millions driven off their land by these plantations. But like I said, these mostly are white Western liberals who automatically despise unskilled workers, especially brown ones, and who effectively regard the totally dispossessed as not human at all.
 
Given this, I wonder how much of the special animus animal welfare types hold against small pastoral farms is driven, not just by a general belief that any kind of animal husbandry automatically is exploitative and cruel, but by the standard technocratic statist hatred of any activity outside the corporate system, hatred especially for the Community Food sector. In the same way that mainstream food NGOs have more in common with Monsanto than they do with small farmers (especially Southern brown farmers), indigenous peoples, and grassroots democracy activists, so the average Western liberal is likely to hold more in common with big corporate structures as such, including even the CAFO system, than with decentralized, uncorporatized economic systems. Again, it’s no accident that the same who deplore CAFOs tend to move smoothly to exalting the grain and vegetable equivalent of CAFOs, even though the corporate agriculture and food system is an integrated whole, every one of whose parts drives the all the pathologies of the whole. Of course an industrial soy field is an ecological disaster different only in degree from a pig CAFO. The underlying psychological and moral premise is the same.
 
As for the special animus I mentioned, I’ve seen lots of squabbles between small animal farmers and vegan types, including some on both sides of my personal acquaintance. And while grass farmers sometimes do bait animal welfare people, in my experience it’s far more common for animal people to single out small husbandry for special abuse, as if this kind of activity were especially loathesome to them. In that connection, I’ll add that the FTCLDF’s article on this incident was more fair in describing the motivations of anti-cruelty activists, and in giving them credit for their excellent exposures of CAFO horrors, than the depictions of small pastoral operations that I’ve seen in the animal welfare literature.
 
To close where I began, the abolition of CAFOs is a critical human and ecological need for the many reasons I briefly listed above. The community food movement, animal and vegetable farmers, all agree on this. Presumably most animal activists would agree also. That’s why the focus of their action ought to be on the main target and not on a key part of the rising Community Food sector, whose expansion and flourishing is the equal affirmative need corresponding with the great abolition need. Therefore it’s unfortunate where two such important groups conflict.
 
But it’s also unfortunate that many who oppose some notion of animal cruelty seem not to agree on the overall destructiveness and unsustainability of the corporate food system as such. Perhaps many of them usually support that system against any attempt to operate outside it. (We saw how all the food NGOs supported Big Ag’s “Food Safety Modernization Act”.) It seems these are the reasons that the conflict is so largely driven, not by the small farms but by the animal activists. Of course they’d reply that they regard these farms as cruel as well, and probably most of them believe that. But as I described here, only bad faith or a grotesque lapse of proportion could cause them to lose sight of the main goal, the abolition of CAFOs. Certainly if I were an animal activist I’d eat, drink, and sleep nothing but this goal.
 
In the end CAFOs, like the rest of industrial agriculture, are unsustainable and will cease to exist. We who fight to build Food Sovereignty will win in the end, with or without the assistance of the animal welfare movement. It’s up to them to decide whether they’re really part of opposing corporate power and industrial ravage, and whether they really want to help build a human, ecological future, or whether like the climate crocodiles they’re just another stupid self-indulgence amid Babylon.
 
*I used to think agroecology wasn’t sustainable without the supplement of animal manures. Invariably, any alternative I’ve seen touted by animal activists turned out to be based on more or less hidden fossil fuel supplements. The few times I discussed this with vegans or animal activists I told them I was willing to be convinced otherwise, and that researching this question would be a useful thing for them to do. None ever took me up on it.
 
Ironically, the more I’ve researched cover cropping the more convinced I’ve become that with maximal cover cropping and composting, a truly vegan agroecological horticulture probably could work. But I got no help from the vegans themselves in reaching this conclusion.
 
 
 
 
 
Advertisements

January 17, 2018

The Dicamba Crisis Part Four: The Strict Intent of the Destructive System

>

 
 
Parts one, two, three.
 
Monsanto dubbed the 2017 dicamba disaster a “tremendous success” with “wonderful results.” What does it mean when Monsanto proclaims success?
 
Monsanto’s commitment in the face of disaster to push on aggressively with the Xtend expansion, to double down, proves that disaster is a core goal for them. In 2015 Monsanto marketed Xtend cotton seed in the absence of regulatory approval for any of the allegedly “improved” herbicide formulations. Xtend soybeans followed in 2016, still no brand-name dicamba. Therefore from the start it was evident that the company envisioned off-label use of the cheapest, most volatile dicamba formulations. This didn’t matter because Monsanto and BASF knew their own brand-name formulations also were highly volatile. In 2015-2016 Monsanto merely was setting up one of its future alibis, the lie that farmers were illicitly using cheap formulations. The company secured any future plausibility of this lie by ensuring it would be true for Xtend adopters in 2016.
 
The 2017 crisis of volatility and destruction of non-Xtend soybeans and all other broad-leaf crops and plants followed like clock-work. It was predicted, it was forecast, it was intended by the sellers of dicamba and dicamba-tolerant seeds. Anyone who now wants to continue with business as usual, full speed ahead, self-evidently is a conscious criminal. Monsanto is ardent to expand at the most breakneck speed in the most reckless way. The company proclaims its goal to go from 20 million acres of soybeans planted to Xtend in 2017 to 40 million in 2018 and 55 million in 2019.
 
Monsanto’s campaign is classic disaster capitalism: Intentionally generate a disaster then use it to maximize your profit and power. Dicamba’s volatility is a campaign of extortion designed to force all soy farmers to buy Xtend seeds. More broadly the goal is to render food production as tenuous as possible. The worst part of dicamba’s ravages is that it’s destroying produce farms and vegetable gardens, it’s destroying actual food production. If the Xtend system continues to expand it will render everything but commodity dicamba-tolerant soybeans impossible to grow across the range of the Xtend deployment. This is a case study in the real goal of poison-based agriculture. The will to continue this deployment on the part of Monsanto, the US and state governments, academia and the mainstream media proves that this destruction is the goal.
 
The evidence for these truths is patent throughout the historical record. We see it with Monsanto’s scorched-earth resistance to all temporal, geographic, and temperature limitations, and to all application restrictions except those of its own label. We see it in their systematic campaign of lies, blaming everything imaginable except the inherent volatility of their product. We see it in their campaign of lawsuits and corruption against even the most moderate, rational response to the crisis. We see it in their rebate plan for farmers who buy Xtend seeds and XtendiMax dicamba herbicide. This is the carrot to go with the Xtortion stick. Both are toward the same goal of seizing and holding arable territory, market share. The goal is to entrench the Xtend system to the point that it would be impossible to dislodge it within the context of commodity agriculture.
 
From the start Monsanto refused to allow study of the volatility of its brand-name dicamba herbicide. Weed scientists had to wait until they could purchase XtendiMax at the store in order to subject it to scientific purview. In a perfect symbol of Monsanto’s scorched-earth anti-science policy the University of Arkansas soybean test plot was wiped out by volatile drift from outside.
 
Nevertheless researchers soldiered on and proved that all dicamba is volatile, including the alleged “improved, non-volatile” formulations like XtendiMax. They uncovered another example of the fraudulent “science” typical of the corporations. The claims of Monsanto, DuPont, BASF were based on perfunctory tests performed in ivory tower labs. When weed scientists tested the same formulations in the field, i.e. under real world conditions, they found significant volatility for all the formulations. This is to be expected, since volatility is a function of atmospheric suffusion and weather conditions. How is it possible to test dicamba volatility in a lab? Only in the world of corporate fake science, the kind exalted by the STEM establishment, academia, and media. (The same scam was used by Matin Qaim to claim good yields for Bt cotton. This scientific fraud is still often cited in the mainstream media.) This also is emblematic of the limitations of lab-controlled experiment even if it were to be undertaken in good faith. Of course the corporations and government regulators never have any but bad faith.
 
In reality, dicamba is so volatile that in a normal year there wouldn’t be enough appropriate spraying days even according to the bogus regulations Monsanto “voluntarily” agreed to with the EPA and Monsanto’s own impossible label restrictions.
 
Anyone familiar with the history of bureaucracy and legalistic Catch-22s designed to turn everyone into a potential lawbreaker knows what’s going on here. Monsanto, with EPA connivance, intentionally designed the label to be impossible to faithfully adhere to. That way in every case of drift or volatilization they can play “Gotcha” and blame the farmer for improper application. This also proves Monsanto and the EPA fully anticipated the epidemic of off-site damage.
 
This proves that the product is impossible to use safely. The state regulations are bogus and that Monsanto does not intend for farmers to abide by them (just like with Bt refuges). It proves the only purpose of the regulations is as a political ploy to buy time against public unrest, and to play Gotcha with even the most scrupulous dicamba users, to keep them ready to become scapegoats.*
 
[*Poison farmers are criminals as well, but low-level ones. Monsanto and the EPA give the orders and control everything. Monsanto would prefer to maintain industrial farmers as a united pro-poison front, submissive to corporate control and working to poison the people. But setting farmers at one another’s throats as they’re doing here isn’t bad either. Note that all calls for compromise, unity, reconciliation are only on corporate control terms and implicitly assume submission to Xtend, continued submission to herbicide-tolerant GMO-poison systems as such. Also, it seems that Monsanto is being intentionally confusing in order to force farmers to sign up for its otherwise unnecessary Climate Corporation subscription.]
 
 
All this is proof of the systemic destructive totalitarian intent of the corporate-technocratic system. On Monsanto’s part this intent indisputably is conscious and willful. All their actions, most of which are premeditated, prove this.
 
The dicamba crisis is the latest and most extreme example yet of how co-existence with GMOs is impossible. It’s obviously impossible for organic farming. It’s impossible for non-GM conventional farming. With Xtend Monsanto has upped the ante, stepping up the assault on organic and non-GM farming and even rendering all previous GM soy varieties untenable. This is the first effective example of what the cartel projects as an indefinitely re-writable blank slate it can force to be continually wiped clean and rewritten, a process of destruction and re-destruction redolent of using war to destroy in order to generate space profitable to rebuild. This is the essence of disaster capitalism. Monsanto dreams of an agriculture totally subjugated by the most profitable GM varieties, until these too are rendered obsolete and wiped out by even higher-stacked, more expensive, more extreme varieties.
 
Today it’s universally acknowledged that soybean co-existence is impossible. The volatility is too extreme for even the most conscientious sprayers to prevent it. Where it comes to planting dicamba-tolerant seeds, it’s all or nothing. “We can’t co-exist. It’s so volatile and unpredictable.”
 
At the same time Monsanto also is driving the pesticide treadmill as hard as it can. The more total the Xtend deployment, the more volatility/drift/atmospheric loading with dicamba, the faster Palmer amaranth and other weeds will resist. This proves Monsanto’s strict intent to generate dicamba-resistant superweeds as fast and expansively as possible.
 
The corporations like the pesticide/superpest arms race for obvious reasons: It’s the most potent fuel driving the machine of ever more extravagant GM stacks and multi-product pesticide slatherings. This maximizes profit, control, power, and destruction. Again, the lies, extortion, rebates, legal and political lobbying, and refusal to allow study all prove the intent.
 
The USDA and EPA also intend and desire all this. The EPA explicitly endorsed part one of my corporate template with this quote: “We’re committed to taking appropriate action for the 2018 growing season with an eye toward ensuring that the technology is available, number one, to growers but that it is used responsibly.” Throughout the crisis the agency has provided Monsanto with its imprimatur, as per part three of the template. The EPA itself refused to perform or require volatility testing in the first place. Therefore both Monsanto and the EPA strictly admit the volatility of Monsanto’s XtendiMax. Such an admission is always implicit where those with the resources and responsibility to test refuse to do so and work to prevent anyone else from doing so. In the broad sense this is Strict Proof that the corporations and governments know or believe pesticides and GMOs to be harmful to human health. If they didn’t believe this they certainly would have performed legitimate safety tests instead of promulgating the religious lie of “substantial equivalence” along with a passel of methodologically fraudulent tests and rumors of “secret science”, a contradiction in terms. We know that the worst we can speculate is in fact true. The corporations and governments themselves admit this, proven by their consistent pattern of action.
 
In the same way, any consistent course of action on the part of those who can choose a different course proves their Strict Intent to cause all the consistent significant effects of their consistent course of action. Here we see the intent of Monsanto and the US government to wipe out all non-GM soy, as much of any other kind of farming, gardening, ornamentals, and wild plants as possible, and along the way to poison the soil and environment as totally as possible. Whatever human and animal health effects soon arise from the atmospheric suffusion of the dicamba zone also have been intended by these organizations.
 
The refusal of government and private insurers to cover off-target dicamba damage is further proof that this is a comprehensive campaign to drive out all non-Xtend soy farming. It’s government/insuser collusion against farmers.
 
 
What recourse does the imputation of justice have, what course the law? There’s a welter of lawsuits arguing correctly that the product is impossible to use safely, that the damage is the result of negligence or malice on the part of Monsanto and BASF, and that the dicamba sellers colluded to form an extortion racket.
 
We know this is true. Xtortion plus rebate is meant to add up to an offer you can’t refuse if you’re a soy farmer. Monsanto wants to maximize dicamba use (sales, from a mundane profiterring point of view; but maximal poison deployment has implications for power and control far beyond mundane profits) regardless of destructive effects, or intentionally to maximize the destruction. It makes no difference since by Strict Intent there’s no practical difference between willful premeditated nihilism and the active will and premeditation to destroy. Therefore there is no moral difference, and there should be no difference from the perspective of the law or policy. This doctrine is necessary especially in a case like poison drift where it’s difficult to impossible to pinpoint responsibility for specific damage and where, even if this circumstance of non-responsibility hadn’t been anticipated and pre-planned, all the perpetrators rush to take advantage of it in a deliberate, systematic way.
 
Therefore it follows that abolitionist doctrine must be to impose Strict Liability upon all participants in the poison racket, from developers to sellers to users. It’s the same principle as for any other criminal conspiracy: The guy driving the getaway car is just as guilty of murder as the robber inside the bank who pulls the trigger, even though he never left the car. Everyone knows how toxic and destructive all these chemicals are, the corporations and regulators most of all, so no one can claim innocent ignorance. This is a core movement principle and the movement must promise to put this into effect wherever it gets the power. This principle follows practically from the principles of Strict Proof and Strict Intent.
 
Everyone, abolitionists and reformers alike, should take up these doctrines, make them mainstays of philosophy and political communication, and promise to make them the law of the land.
 
To prevent confusion, I’m not saying there’s a master cabal somewhere consciously plotting all this out, though Monsanto certainly is conscious of much of it. I’m describing an existential inertia and a biological campaign. Therefore we’re only dealing proximately with conventional moral philosophy. Rather, we’re dealing with an elemental process whose morality we must view more primally in terms of its consistent action rather than foolish speculation about the “consciousness” of the creatures driving it. You might as well speculate about the consciousness of corporations, patents, and dollars while you’re at it. Anyway, in this case the primary organisms involved are Agrobacterium tumefaciens, soybeans and cotton, and weeds like Palmer amaranth. The humans involved behave according to the same patterns. The technocratic propagandists who exalt corporate personhood, artificial intelligence, and robots are similarly disparaging their own role on the other, “post-human” end.
 
We see how inadequate conventional moralizing is to the crisis. Rather we need the strict morality of Strict Intent, Strict Proof, Strict Liability. We must apply it to the corporations, the regulators, the scientific establishment, academia, the mainstream media, the technocratic political class in general.
 
 
Herbicide-tolerance is a proven failed technology. Xtend and Enlist are as doomed as Roundup Ready. Any support for the continuation of this genre is automatic bad faith and automatic support for all the worst effects of the deployment. Therefore all harms caused by it are willful, deliberate, malicious.
 
The system has literally zero ideas beyond poison plants, which is all GMOs are. Literally no amount of failure and destruction could cause these creatures to think in any terms other than betting even more of the future of humanity and the Earth on an already busted hand. They are criminally insane, or analogous to pathogenic microbes, and can be dealt with only as such.
 
As for soybeans, we have to purge them from processed food and from animal feed. Once again we see the critical need to abolish factory farms.
 
 
Propagate the necessary new ideas.
 
 
 
 

October 31, 2017

Who Are the Proxxers? We Start With the Vaccination Controversy

>

Here’s the source of death. An eminently respectable, scientific campaign.

 
 
Governments and corporations are engaged in a systematic campaign to eradicate antibiotics as a medically effective treatment. The three main vectors of this campaign are mainstays of corporate industrial agriculture:
 
1. In factory farms animals are massively dosed with antibiotics in order to keep them alive under such disease-promoting conditions, and to promote quick weight gain.
 
2. In genetic engineering the transgene often includes an “antibiotic resistance marker”. Following the insertion process the engineers douse the cultured cells with an antibiotic, which kills all but the cells which incorporated the transgene.
 
3. Herbicides like glyphosate and 2,4-D are antibiotics, and in the process of weeds and bacteria developing resistance to herbicides they also develop a general resistance to antibiotics.
 
 
In all these ways the corporate-technocracy system deliberately drives the ever faster evolution of antibiotic resistant microbes, and the escalating failure of antibiotics as a medical treatment.
 
Since these effects are well known we also know that this is a consciously intended result of corporate industrial agriculture, and that the cadres and supporters of this mode of agriculture are part of this campaign to wipe out the effectiveness of antibiotics.
 
Peculiarly, many of these corporate fanboys are in a state of rage about the existence of people who are nonconformists where it comes to the ideology of vaccination.* Although their denunciations are usually incoherent, to the extent they give a reason they claim to fear for the public health.
 
But they’re obviously lying when they claim to care about public health, since they express no concern at all about the corporate state’s campaign to wipe out antibiotics, even though this systematic campaign on the part of the power structure is vastly more dangerous to public health than the actions of a relatively small, ad hoc group of vaccine dissenters. This proves that the hysteria against the non-vaccinators is a proxy for something. Therefore this figurative lynch mob should be called proxxers.
 
What motivates these persons? Most obviously, they’re hard core members of the religious cult of scientism, statism, technocracy, “progress”, Mammon. This gives us the first, most obvious clue: As typical authoritarian followers, these persons will hear no evil said of the corporations, but gleefully will attack any dissident group the media directs them against.
 
In recent years there has been a top-down media-engineered campaign designed to demonize the trivial group of non-vaccinators. Given the growing evidence of the ongoing harms and great dangers of the corporate agricultural system, as well as how obviously destructive the rest of the corporate onslaught is becoming, the corporate media is increasingly desperate to trump up diversions and scapegoats. In the case of the lethal pandemics already being caused by globalization’s shantytowns and factory farms, and the far worse inevitably to come, the system’s goal is to provide scapegoats to divert public fears and anger, as well as to muster fascistic discipline among potential cadres along the lines of scientism, the only pro-corporate ideology which can tap into threads which aren’t purely mercenary. Thus the most unreconstructed, brutal greed, powerlust, sadism, and hate try to make common cause with what’s left of the withering “Progress” ideology.
 
The progress religion also explains why these cultists faithfully believe that antibiotic resistance is no problem for public health while non-vaccination or raw milk allegedly are. From their point of view, antibiotic resistance is the result of the profound “progress” of CAFOs and genetic engineering. Where a more spectacular progress is trumping another, the bigger spectacle wins. Thus the doomed efficacy of antibiotics is a price the technocracy cultists are willing to pay in order to fully develop the technocratic domination of agriculture and food. By contrast, from this perspective raw milk and non-vaccination are not examples of further “progress”, but alleged regressions. Thus the public health fears which cease to exist in the case of the far greater danger of antibiotic resistance suddenly become “real” for the cultists, and they shriek accordingly.
 
Most intense of all, the proxxers become all the more enraged and incipiently violent in direct relation to how they’re losing faith in their religion. They see ever growing numbers of people losing faith in scientism and statism, ever growing numbers rejecting these with contempt. And the cultists themselves give a daily demonstration of how they’re losing confidence in themselves and their cult. The corporate state and technocratic establishment are still in full power and still wield the overwhelming preponderance of power, while dissidents are only so many small mammals hiding in the underbrush. What kind of snowflake would a dinosaur have to be to go on shrieking hysterically about the alleged misdeeds of these powerless mammals? Obviously they sense the impending destruction of their dominion and are becoming ever more desperate, even as their power seems still to be fully intact.
 
The pogrom mentality of the proxxers against the non-vaccinators is an expression of their rage against the civil disobedience of a small dissident group. They see non-vaccination as an intolerable affront to the religious majesty of scientism and statism. They experience it as a form of lese majestie. Sensing the inevitable collapse of the system they worship (since in terms of resources and ecological destruction the technocratic civilization is unsustainable), they react with all the venom of their despairing rage against an officially designated target.
 
This brings us to a more concrete reason for the demonization campaign. The CAFO system with its corresponding eradication of antibiotic efficacy inevitably will generate lethal pandemics. The corporate state at least accepts this as a cost of ramifying the system, same as the rank and file cultists do; and it may believe it can control such pandemics as a weapon of terror and population control.
 
Whatever the nightmare visions of the likes of Bill Gates, Monsanto, and the US military, everyone knows CAFOs, along with the rest of the general campaign of environmental poisonism, will generate pandemics. So the system is already setting up non-vaccinators to serve as a scapegoat when such pandemics arise. That’s a big part of why the corporate media obsesses on the mouse in the room (vaccines) and not the elephant (antibiotics), and that’s a big part of why the lynch mob responds the way it does.
 
So we have a first draft toward understanding why supporters of the eradication of antibiotics** turn around and shriek about the alleged threat non-vaccinators pose to public health. It has zero to do with any real concern about public health. On the contrary, it’s rooted in technocratic religion; it comprises a lashing out on account of the cultists’ losing faith in this religion; and it’s preparing the ground for a disaster capitalist scapegoating of an innocent minority when the actions of the corporate system inevitably bring disaster.
 
 
Anyone who doesn’t fight for the abolition of antibiotic abuse has zero credibility if he turns around and claims to be concerned about the relatively small risks from non-vaccination. The shrillness of the proxxers juxtaposed with their resounding silence where it comes to antibiotic abuse adds up to proof of their bad faith and cowardice. They’re nothing but authoritarian statists who are outraged by a form of civil disobedience they find particularly offensive as an affront to their statism and scientism. They should be systematically counterattacked as such, whatever one’s views on vaccination itself.
 
Faced with anyone who claims to criticize non-vaccinators from the point of view of a concern for public health, I start with one question: What have you done to oppose sub-therapeutic antibiotic abuse in factory farms and genetic engineering? Please direct me to where you’ve written or taken action on this.
 
A satisfactory answer to this question is necessary to establish one’s bona fides. Anyone who can’t do so is a fraud who’s really jumping onto an anti-dissident bandwagon out of typically cowardly bullying authoritarian motives. Where it comes to the vaccination lynch mob, dissenters and critics should always counterattack these bad faith liars the way I describe.
 
 
Do you really care about public health? If so, here’s two of the necessary goals: Abolish factory farms, abolish GMOs. Nothing short of this can suffice, and nothing short of this can comprise a rationally or morally coherent position for anyone who claims to care about public health.
 
 
*This piece is not about vaccination in itself. Vaccination makes sense in principle. But there are three separate matters here: The science of vaccination in principle; the alleged need for and safety of the corporate-manufactured vaccines we actually have; and the ideology which decrees that humans need an indefinitely expanding array of vaccinations, and that wherever the technocratic establishment orders people to get themselves and their children vaccinated, the people must obey without question. This, of course, is fundamentalist religion, not science or reason (let alone democracy). But in a typically fraudulent authoritarian tactic, those who criticize non-vaccinators always blur these three together and come up with the standard lie, “non-vaccination = anti-science”. That’s because neither the case for corporate control of vaccines nor the scientism religion of vaccines can stand up to political or rational scrutiny.
 
 
**Most antibiotics are derived from soil bacteria, the same soil microbes systematically being eradicated by industrial agriculture. So the corporate-technocratic campaign also strikes at the very root of medical research. Conversely, only the transformation to agroecology and a massive commitment to rebuilding the soil can provide any future basis for antibiotic development. More on this later.
 
 
 
 
 
 

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.