August 5, 2018

You Can Hoard, But You Can’t Hide (Svalbard’s Broken Freezer)


When we built the seed vault, there was not even discussion of the permafrost,” Hege Njaa Aschim, the press representative of the organization that oversees the project, told me. But the weather last winter, she said, was “like a Norwegian summer.” “We didn’t come up with the term doomsday vault,” Cary Fowler, the mastermind of the seed vault, told me. “The idea there was to provide an insurance policy, so if anything were to happen to those other facilities, it wouldn’t be an extinction event.”
Destruction of seed biodiversity is one of the worst crises and crimes of corporate agriculture. The proprietors of Svalbard – the agrochemical cartel and the governments that serve it – all want the total death of humanity and the Earth. For the ecology, agronomy, and human freedom it’s essential that we the living people breed our own necessary organic crops and sustain and expand a decentralized network of seed saving and seed exchange.
You won’t hear this in the corporate media. There you’re far more likely to find the hagiography of Svalbard, the “doomsday vault” which is going to save us all, the seed bank which in crisis is going to enable Monsanto and the Gates Foundation to continue to “feed the world” even though so far all they’re doing is starving it.
Svalbard is part of the system dedicated to centralized corporate control of all genetic diversity and committed to the destruction of agroecology, participatory breeding, networked seed sharing and conservation. Consider who controls the Svalbard project: Bayer/Monsanto, the Gates Foundation, Syngenta, DuPont, USAID, the CGIAR, the World Bank, all dedicated to totalitarian technocracy.
The project is a typical “public-private partnership” which fits into the decades-long pattern of CGIAR institutions traversing the global South to collect germplasm, convey it to the corporations (i.e. to perform corporate research with public money), and to proselytize on behalf of Western corporate agriculture among Southern officials, intellectuals and farmers, but using a “public” veneer. USAID and the Gates crew specialize in this. The seeds they heist and convey to the corporate vault then come under corporate control and will be used only for the elites’ purposes. The same system which is trying to enclose seeds everywhere will deploy its corporate vaults in the same way.
The doomsday vault is supposed to come in handy if the political and corporate elites ever were to have catastrophic need. In the meantime the place serves as a standard publicly-funded corporate gathering and research facility for Monsanto and the rest of the GM seed cartel. In that day-to-day way it represents doomsday for humanity and the Earth.
Beyond that, the idea of Svalbard – a centralized, literal fortress – is completely wrong ecologically. Here as everywhere else we need networked decentralization. We need a vast network of thousands of seed banks, all devoted to adapting landraces on a regional basis. Also, storing seeds is only second best. For varieties to remain attuned to the ecology people need to keep growing them. There’s no way to rely on the ecological viability of even the most carefully stored seeds as time passes while the plants aren’t being grown in the real world. You have to keep planting and growing them.
This also is the only way to restore seeds and crops as a core part of human culture, human spirit. They must be part of our living experience, our immersion in the flows of the ecology.
Svalbard’s broken freezer, its melting permafrost, is a reminder of how physically and politically vulnerable a bunker like this is, how it’s the wrong path. It’s ironic that the climate chaos being driven most of all by the industrial agriculture paradigm of which Svalbard is a devoted part is coming home to threaten the vault itself. This project of Monsanto and Gates does indeed represent doomsday: First human doom through socioeconomic attack, then ecological doom through poisonism and destruction of habitat and biodiversity, and above all total human and ecological doom through total climate chaos.

July 26, 2018

The Dicamba Crisis Part 5: Waging War to Seize Territory


Parts One, Two, Three, Four.
1. There’s never been a clear line of demarcation between chemical weapons in war, civilian use of such weapons, and agricultural use of poisons. In World War I poison gas weapons were developed while the Haber-Bosch process was used to manufacture explosives. Following the war these technologies were seamlessly refurbished to manufacture pesticides and synthetic fertilizer. The militaristic rhetoric didn’t change at all: Pesticides were advertised as enabling the farmer and society to wage war on pests, which were demonized as evil.
In World War II the same factories went back to producing munitions and herbicides for military use. After the war the factories were retooled for a massive new agricultural poison onslaught which eventually developed into the “green revolution”. War use never ceased. From Vietnam to this day in Colombia and elsewhere Agent Orange and other poisons are used for military and paramilitary purposes, for war and police action. Chemical weapons always have been used for tyrannical political goals.
This conjunction of poisonism and militarism occurs in the context of the religious separation of “man” from “nature” and the false doctrine that these are adversaries. Man vs. nature in turn is an extension of man vs. man. Ecological domination always has been conjoined with social domination, and the former never occurs except as part of a strategy toward the latter. The war on nature always is the war on humanity. In the end, ecophobia, biophobia, are expressions of misanthropy. Civilization can be defined as a system which enables a cadre of elites to force surplus production and steal it in order to build structures and organizations which maximize their own wealth and power. This system always has been totally destructive toward humanity and the Earth. Agriculture always has been designed for enclosure, dispossession, physically destroying the land through denuding and poisoning the soil, desertification. Modern poison-based agriculture is one of the most extreme manifestations of this total destructive assault on people and ecology.
Agribusiness consolidates maximum control over farming and the food supply and launches a general assault on the ecology, all toward the goal of maximizing human and ecological monoculture. This is the scorched-earth terrain which provides the best habitat for pest, weed, and disease infestation, and therefore the maximum ideological and political habitat for the power claims of agribusiness, the scientism cult, and all who hate humanity and nature and who seek total domination. Poisonism therefore generates the maximal habitat for the propaganda campaign of lies, fear-mongering, and fraudulent promises that the solution is right around the corner if farmers and society only stay the poison course. This is proven every day in a hundred new articles and press statements from corporations, governments, Wall Street, academia, and the mainstream media, all speaking as one proclaiming that the only solution to the escalating crisis is to escalate the emissions and the poison.
2. One way to write the history of the 20th century is to trace the history of the Rockefeller Foundation and similar organizations, culminating today in the Gates Foundation, as the bodies which coordinate de jure war and sublimated agricultural war, with the close cooperation of corporations and the military.
As we said there never was a clear distinction between massive use of chemical weapons in Vietnam and elsewhere and massive use of chemical weapons in the green revolution. In both cases Western globalization has treated the global South as a free-fire zone, wherever a vacuum exists.
The corporate-technocratic elites have brought this war and its ideology back to the home countries. The pesticide/fertilizer onslaught has engulfed the West itself. Based on this historical record we know the corporate state considers America itself a free-fire zone for every kind of weaponized assault, from militarized police to militarized agriculture, wherever the state considers necessary.
What’s the objective difference between the Agent Orange defoliation campaign in Vietnam and today’s defoliation campaign in America based on dicamba and 2,4-D (itself one half of the Agent Orange blend)? We recognize the dicamba campaign as at least intermediate between a “regular” agricultural poison campaign and a de jure war defoliation campaign.
Corporate agriculture’s mass expulsion of farm communities from their land, part of the US “food weapon” strategy, is sublimated war. There is no logical difference between driving people off their land and into slums where they are utterly dependent, and physically killing them. Anyone willing to do or tolerate the former is willing to do and tolerate the latter.
The Rockefeller Foundation played a major role in coordinating the green revolution, pesticide/fertilizer deployment, and the development of GMOs ancillary to the poison regime. The Gates Foundation subsequently has taken the lead in aggrandizing the GMO/pesticide poison project. Gates provides organizational leadership and fraudulent “philanthropic” propaganda cover for what’s nothing but brutal corporate colonialism. This colonialism is also a testing ground for other totalitarian assaults.
In spite of its “humanitarian” lies (always embellished with Randroid spin that all good things can come only from total corporate control), the Gates Foundation really stands for total corporate control of agriculture and food on a monoculture commodity export basis. For decades this has been proven to do nothing but increase hunger, famine, and disease. The Gates Foundation is an extreme activist on behalf of globalization export agriculture and seeks systematically to eradicate African food production, and therefore to maximize food insecurity, hunger, and famine. Africa and elsewhere in the global South also serve Gates and Monsanto as testing grounds for ecological domination technology designed to be deployed in the Western countries as well. All of humanity which lacks monetary wealth, not just the people of the South, are slated for liquidation.
Today the Gates Foundation is the primary propaganda coordinator on behalf of these ideological and anti-political assaults. It’s the main coordinator among the various branches of the corporate state – the US and UK governments, the Big Ag corporations, the G7, the universities, the corporate media, and various system NGOs.
Economically, politically, ecologically, the corporate-technocratic state works to impose maximum monopoly monoculture control with minimum real-world apparatus or indeed contact with physical reality at all. The sector comprising corporate agriculture and food, along with its lead enablers from the state like USAID and the USDA, all coordinated by the quasi-governmental Gates and Rockefeller Foundations, thinks exclusively in terms of Mammon’s fictive numbers. The measure of agriculture is never food for human beings but sanctified fake numbers like GDP, trade balances, sovereign debt, commodity and stock prices, corporate profits, money as such. These pure fictions are rendered real only by the corporate state’s violence and the tolerance of the people. Thus the corporate/government/NGO structure is able globally to impose and enforce the agricultural model which conforms to these measures and eradicates, as much as possible, all actual food production for human beings. This physical control and destruction without responsibility is the grail of all corporations.
In these ways the goal is to render it as literally true as possible that food is produced by money, that food comes from the supermarket.
3. The military-agricultural complex I describe here is best epitomized in the Gates/DARPA joint project to develop gene drive technology. This is the most extreme example yet of a dual use military/agricultural weapon. In general, genetic engineering is becoming increasingly militarized.
This is the context for the propaganda campaign for gene drives being deployed against so-called “invasive” plants and animals such as rats. “Rats” should be taken as a symbolic place-holder for more far-reaching land-cleansing plans. Consider the Nazi propaganda films which equated Jews with rats, then compare the coupled campaigns of gene drive deployment vs. rats and other “invasives”, and GMO deployment as part of corporate agriculture’s onslaught seeking to drive all of humanity off the land. When we compare these we start to get a picture of where all this is heading.
DARPA often has partnered with Monsanto, from the deployment of Agent Orange to research into robotic bees. Continuing this partnership, Monsanto has been a key player in the anti-“invasive” propaganda. The theme of glyphosate being ecologically necessary to combat “invasive” weeds laid the propaganda groundwork for the gene drive strategy. With the collapse of glyphosate, dicamba and 2,4-D are being deployed as the “new”/old weaponry allegedly necessary to wage this allegedly necessary war.
Gates teams with Monsanto, Gates teams with the military, Monsanto teams with the military, we have consensus on intent and goal.
4. The primary agronomic feature of poison-based agriculture is the arms race between the ever escalating, ever more toxic brew of pesticides, and the resistance evolution keeps producing in the weeds, insects, fungi, and other so-called “pests”. This arms race, which in civilian language is also called the pesticide treadmill, is the context in which Monsanto and its Gates/military allies are resurrecting two obsolete herbicides, dicamba and the Agent Orange constituent 2,4-D, for a renewed assault. Monsanto, the USDA, and the media originally promised that these poisons, even more toxic and destructive than glyphosate, would be rendered permanently obsolete by the Roundup Ready GMO system. These herbicides are indeed obsolete from any sane ecological and agronomic point of view, but of the corporate-technocratic system is not sane, nor is it honest. The corporations and the US government always were lying about dicamba and 2,4-D, and in recent years they’ve been bringing them back on a massive scale, with GMOs engineered to accompany them: Monsanto’s dicamba tolerant Xtend soybeans and cotton, and Dow’s 2,4-D tolerant maize, soybeans, and cotton. The result has been the ongoing dicamba disaster. As the Enlist system is more widely propagated a 2,4-D disaster will join the dicamba disaster.
The dicamba GMO crisis builds on the failure of Roundup and of the pesticide model as such. It simultaneously denies evolution and drives a specially destructive mode of evolution. Herbicide tolerant GMOs systematically select for weed resistance. Dicamba-resistant weeds already are on the rise. The greater the atmospheric suffusion of volatile dicamba vapor, the faster it’ll drive weed resistance along with every other ecological and health harm. Monoculture as such, by its very simplicity, drives the development of resistance, accelerates the arms race.
The deliberate goal is to render all agriculture which is not engineered to resist dicamba and/or 2,4-D impossible. Both herbicides are extremely volatile and inevitably will attack and kill all other plants – row crops not engineered to resist; fruits and vegetables (commercial growing and personal gardens); trees; ornamentals; as much as possible all wild plants. This extreme volatility renders the GMO/herbicide tandem an effective weapon for area denial, seizure and domination of territory. Monsanto is succeeding in driving out all non-Xtend soybean production in the main production zones. Monsanto and Dow intend the same result for maize and cotton. 2,4-D intrinsically contains dioxins as part of the manufacturing process. (Called “by-products” or “impurities”, really premeditated and therefore deliberate.) The end goal: Vast landscapes where literally nothing grows but these three crops in their Xtend and Enlist versions. The GM seed is the vehicle to force full-season deployment of this volatile chemical warfare.
Volatility is dicamba’s most insidious and destructive mode of drift. Under common conditions of warmth and humidity liquid dicamba resting on plants and soil is prone to volatilize, turn into a gas, lift off the surfaces and float on the air often many miles from the site of spraying before weather conditions change and cause it to resettle on whatever plants are in the vicinity. The more dicamba is sprayed in a region the more all-pervasive the suffusion becomes. This is called atmospheric loading.
Dicamba’s volatility effect is well known. Monsanto and BASF promised that their new dicamba formulations, XtendiMax and Engenia, had solved the problem and would not be volatile. In 2017 when university researchers were able to purchase XtendiMax and Engenia at the store and test it for volatility (Monsanto forbade them pre-market access to XtendiMax, thus proving it was lying about the product) they found that these brand name formulations are nearly as volatile as the earlier cheap formulas. The fact is that all dicamba is volatile. Indeed there’s evidence that dicamba’s volatility is essential to it having any proximate herbicidal effect on weeds in the first place. It’s impossible to use dicamba under warm humid conditions, i.e. the way it’s intended to be used under the Xtend system, and not have it promiscuously volatilize, move off site, and kill any broad leaf crops and plants it resettles upon.
This proves that by design all dicamba is highly volatile and nothing can prevent it from moving off site and killing other crops and plants. Co-existence with the Xtend system is impossible. This has been a deliberate campaign. In 2018 all soy farmers have had no choice but to buy Xtend GM seeds or run the great risk of having their crop destroyed by chemical warfare. In the same way much vegetable farming and gardening as well as the existence of many other plants and trees is becoming impossible in the dicamba free-fire zones. This proves that Monsanto’s goal remains the same as it’s always been, the goal it enshrined in what it calls its “Expanded Trait Penetration” program. Monsanto’s goal always is to force farmers to buy as many stacked GM traits as possible. Xtend is the most extreme version yet of this program. Monsanto’s goal is to extort all soybean farmers, under threat of the drift destruction of their crop, into buying the Xtend seeds and the XtendiMax herbicide.
In turn, the dicamba offensive is the most potent assault yet seeking to bring all land and ecology under technocratic dominion. It’s an expression of the fanatical monoculture mentality which wants to wipe out all natural plant growth and reduce all cultivation, all plant growth as such, to corporate-controlled industrial monoculture. The ultimate monoculture goal is nothing less than to wipe out all biodiversity except for the pests themselves and replace it with a technocratic blank slate. The cultists and operatives first deny evolution in principle, then seek to wipe it out in practice. The goal is to use violence, technological and where necessary physical, to force their nightmare vision of technocratic “progress” onto natural succession.
5. This is a campaign to seize land: Economically (maximum acreage) and through physical assault. The poisoners must drive out non-Xtend/Enlist crops; drive out all food production, thus all fruit and vegetable production, because this kind of farming is closer to being actual food production for human beings; seize the land for consolidation, monoculture, and power. In this way agribusiness works to attain domination over farming. The fewer and bigger the farms, the easier they are to control.
They’re also looking ahead to when money will be worthless and land paramount. To forestall competition they’re not only locking up legal control of land through land-grabbing, but through poisons and soil-mining they’re destroying the land for any use but their industrial monoculture. This is a contingent salting of the earth.
So-called “off-target” destruction is really the destruction of a different kind of target, indeed a more important target than the weeds themselves, which are privileged plants because they provide the pretext for the whole paramilitary campaign against the real targets. By strict intent we know this is all deliberate and premeditated. (Pathogenic bacteria such as salmonella and botulins also are privileged organisms under this system: Dicamba, 2,4-D and glyphosate are antibiotics which selectively kill beneficial bacteria while sparing pathogens and creating good terrain for their proliferation, as well as helping to drive the evolution of antibiotic resistance among these bacteria. Thus the GMO herbicide campaign takes its place alongside gross antibiotic abuse in factory farming and genetic engineering as part of corporate agriculture’s deliberate campaign to foster resistant pathogens, eradicate antibiotics as a medically effective treatment, and generate lethal pandemics. This too is part of clearing the land of its human inhabitants. To say again, this is war in the most literal sense even if most people can’t yet fathom it.)
The entire system of poison-based agriculture is designed to bottle up and destroy the entire ecology replacing it with a technologically controlled monoculture. In this way the biotech/agrochemical cartel joins the finance sector and other core corporate sectors working to bottle up all elements of nature and the real economy, replacing these with the purely fake economy of money, corporate personhood, finance, and patents. The corporate-technocratic accumulation of wealth and power directly corresponds with the technosphere’s physical poisoning and destruction of the Earth. Accumulation naturally indicates an ecological bottleneck. Accumulation equals waste. It is pollution. Those who manipulate such wastes are merely using poison as a weapon. The modern agrochemical onslaught is the latest, worst, most literal use of poison to destroy the Earth in order to hoard power.
And this goes with the legal and physical condemnation of the land. The corporate agricultural campaign ultimately is a campaign of land seizure whose goal is to force all human beings off the land and enclose it within a system of a few big corporate-controlled robot-managed plantations. Herbicide tolerant GMOs are a milestone in the corporate enclosure program, designed directly to eliminate all hand-weeding jobs while enabling farmers to manage much greater acreage, thus accelerating farm consolidation and the forced exodus of humans from the land. By rendering impossible all competing forms of soybean farming and many other kinds of farming, the Xtend-dicamba system is designed to escalate this totalitarian process. The systematic refusal of government and private insurers to cover drift damage, a massive consumer fraud, is another example proving that this is economic warfare against all but the biggest farmers. As is the concurrent campaign, even among the same state governments and weed scientists who deplore the dicamba crisis, to force 2,4-D tolerant crops upon agriculture. The clear goal is an agriculture where no crop (or any other plant) not resistant to both dicamba and 2,4-D will be able to exist at all.
The industrial monoculture and land enclosure system also is meant to render food production as tenuous as possible by forcing all people into a condition of complete dependency upon money and the corporate system while deliberately rendering food production as vulnerable as possible to drought, erosion, pest ravages, soil degradation, intrinsic crop failure, and ultimately the guaranteed shortages of necessary fossil fuels. The corporate food system already systematically generates hunger. It also is preparing famine.
The dicamba GMO system seeks to eradicate actual food production at fruit orchards and vegetable farms and gardens, all of which the corporate-technocratic system views as the real “weeds”. It wants to render anything but dicamba-based commodity soybean production impossible. This is a case study in the real goal of poison agriculture. The will to continue this onslaught on the part of the corporations, the US and state governments, academia and the media proves their Strict Intent to reach an outcome of total destruction.
The pesticide model of agriculture is conjoined with the GMO ideology of technologically overriding and obliterating natural evolution. Pesticides are dedicated to the scorched earth monoculture model of agriculture and the ideology which regards the natural world as something to be wiped out. Poisonism is a radical rejection of biodiversity in principle and practice and comprises the will to wipe out all life except that specially selected to be part of the technocratic socio-ecological engineering.
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 waging 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. The technocratic civilization wants an entire planet brillo-scrubbed this way.
This is a modern replay of the legendary Roman salting of the Carthaginian earth. This too is a scorched-earth act of war. The system’s vision is to turn Earth into a desert and call it civilization. This requires the total deployment of the monoculture and Humanfrei imperatives. Regimentation and order, death and destruction, are the desiderata. Anathema is lack of control, wildness, diversity, beauty, freedom, “anarchy”, “chaos”.
(The psychotic hatred of trees and drive to murder them, from the institutionalized logging sector to the average suburban parasite, is part of this overall religious psychosis. Dicamba takes its place here as a systematic mass murderer of trees.)

May 1, 2018

Gates Foundation Assault on Africa, Cracking from Within


The Gates Foundation/Monsanto’s plan for the land: Stay OUT of the land, stay IN the shantytowns, unto death: First in Africa, then everywhere

Since its inception in 2012 I’ve written many times in condemnation of the Gates Foundation-coordinated “New Alliance for Food Security and Nutrition”. The New Alliance is the campaign of the Gates Foundation, USAID, several Western governments, such multinational agribusiness corporations as Monsanto, DuPont, Cargill, and Unilever, with the assistance of corrupt African governments, to dominate and control Africa’s land and agriculture and drive its millions of community farmers and villagers off their land. The campaign attempts a far more vicious and total reprise of the 19th century wave of African colonization. It’s the escalation and extension to Africa of the modern agricultural imperialism campaign dubbed the “green revolution”. (So-called because it’s superficially about money, though really about total power and domination.)
In 2018 the Alliance has suffered two major blows.* The World Bank itself was forced to admit that its accounting procedure for analyzing the effects of pro-corporate policies enacted by target governments is corrupt and manipulated in order to obtain the desired propaganda result. Shortly after, the French government announced that it was ending its financial and propaganda support for the Gates/USAID/Monsanto program. That leaves just the US and its poodle UK still directly funneling taxpayer money to the corporate assault. (Of course literally all money funding industrial agriculture as such is direct or indirect corporate welfare. Just to give one prominent example, every cent funneled through the Gates Foundation is paid for by the taxpayer.)
Like the rest of humanity, Africa does not need the “help” of corporate technocracy, its poisons, or its dominion of Mammon. Like the rest of humanity, and as already proven by the mass destruction of much of the global South by this same system, Africa will be much better off going into the future beyond the extreme energy civilization if it fights off this Western attempt to destroy its food production. So although the New Alliance campaign is showing signs of cracking up from within, this only confirms the need to step up the fight against it to smash it from without. Africa can ensure the best future possible, the only good future possible, if instead it works to preserve its community food heritage and supplement this with the science of agroecology. Just like the rest of humanity will be forced to do, one way or another.
*The piece goes into wonkish detail and adopts wholesale the enemy’s propaganda term “reforms” for these pro-corporate policy assaults. Now, we anti-globalization campaigners are familiar with this Orwellian use of “reform”, and to the extent we’re radicals the term “reform” is generally a bad word anyway. But unless writers want to preach only to the most narrowly selected choir, they would be aware that to most people a “reform” is a vaguely good-sounding thing. That, of course, is why the globalizers developed this Orwellian use of it in the first place. So sincere anti-globalizers would never use the enemy’s own term this way. The worst examples of what seems like a symptom of Stockholm syndrome are the wholesale adoption of the enemy propaganda terms “free trade” and “free market” on the part of those who claim to oppose what these terms really stand for.
Unfortunately I no longer think this standard affinity for the enemy’s own terms is an accident or the result of sloppiness. Rather, I think it’s typical of the fact that just as with industrial communism before, so today’s allegedly more eco-conscious “radicals” really still offer no alternative to the Earth-murdering, humanity-enslaving productionist-technocratic civilization. They still want productionism, consumptionism, technocracy, but just as with the communists before so they make the same false promise to “do better”. But it’s the civilization itself which is inherently genocidal-ecocidal, inherently destructive of all life and all human feeling and value. To claim one can run the productionist-technocratic civilization in a more eco-friendly, human-friendly** way is the same as claiming one could have run Auschwitz in a more humane way. This analogy is direct and precise in every way.
So our socialists and anti-globalizers and most of all our environmentalists continue to talk like corporate propagandists because they share the deepest substantive affinity with them. The dispute between them and the corporations is nothing but a squabble over tactical means, emphases, tempos. They agree on the end goal of total destruction. Exactly as industrial capitalism and industrial communism had almost everything in common and were merely disputing which kind of power body, nominal “public” government or government-created corporations, should control the wealth and power which were the by-product of destroying the Earth and humanity. This total destruction has always been the shared primary goal.
**I often feel the need to double what’s really a single term, since humanity is inextricably part of the ecology. Thus “eco-friendly, human-friendly” is redundant. On the contrary, the notion that humanity is or ever could be (or should be) separate from nature, let alone at war with it, is by far the worst idea ever, by far the worst psychosis humanity ever invented. Yet even I feel the language has so internalized this notion of a distinction that I use the redundancy. And also to emphasize that even on humanist terms, civilization has been a disaster, while the vast majority of human beings always, at all times including the modern era, would have been much better off without it.

January 9, 2018

Japan is Buying at the Peak of the Bubble


In spite of the US having temporarily pulled out of the TPP negotiations, Canada, Japan, Australia, and several Asian countries are going ahead (obviously expecting the US to adhere later on).
For the sake of tilting at this windmill Japan is scrapping what’s left of its classical public agricultural infrastructure, the same way the US and other Western countries did over the course of the 20th century. In the 1980s globalization’s debt terrorism was used to force most third world countries to scrap their public agriculture systems, as part of the IMF’s “structural adjustments”. India dismantled its system in the 1990s, immediately triggering a suicide epidemic among small commodity farmers which rages to this day. (The US stanched the beginnings of a similar epidemic among American farmers at the same time by greatly increasing Big Ag subsidies, many of which are laundered through the farmers in the form of crop insurance and direct payments. Without this massive planned-economy program of corporate welfare, commodity farming in the US would be economically impossible for the farmers.) Today the corporate “New Alliance” project, spearheaded by the Gates Foundation and USAID for the benefit of Monsanto, DuPont, Cargill, Yara, Unilever and others, is targeting African countries trying to force them to scrap what’s left of their public agricultural systems.
This a particularly stupid and short-sighted move for Japan at this late date. As the extreme energy civilization enters the era of Peak Oil and energy descent, as climate chaos drives sea-level rise and hyper-destructive Pacific cyclones, and as ecological collapse avalanches, it becomes all the more imperative for every society to wean itself from globalization, especially from commodity industrial agriculture, and to restore its food security on an agroecological basis. This is sanity, while any other course of action is insane.
This is especially true for Japan, a country whose classical problem has been to make the most of a small amount of land. The US always has had tremendous leeway to be stupid and wasteful because it was blessed with such a vast abundance of land and resources. Japan has no such cushion. It needs to be smart or perish. So it doesn’t bode well for Japan’s future well-being that it’s choosing now of all times to dismantle its public seed programs and other agricultural programs for the sake of propping up its exports of consumer junk. On the contrary, of all industrialized countries Japan ought to be one of the first to detach its food production from the globalized system and restore it to its natural, rational condition. Food production and distribution naturally and logically is regionally-based, as a rule concurrent with a watershed. Historically only a few luxury imperishables were traded extensively over long distances.
The modern era of extreme energy consumption which made it physically possible to globalize food systems has been an ahistorical blip based on the one-time draw-down of the unique, non-renewable fossil fuel hoard. At the same time this era’s obscene insult to the ecology is reaching its breaking point, and wholesale ecological collapse will make all human activities increasingly difficult or impossible.
For both these reasons, resource limits and ecological limits, Babylon’s ahistorical binge is coming to an end and soon humanity shall be forced to return to historical patterns whether it wants to or not. That means the relocalization of food production and distribution. At this site I’ve long called for the necessary abolition of industrial agriculture and the transformation to agroecology. This transformation is physically and scientifically possible, right up to the global scale, and lacks only the cultural and political will to do it. Humanity still can choose the agroecological transformation.
But there’s no choice as to the ultimate destination. If humanity refuses the route of chosen abolition and transformation, which would be the least hard way, then nature will impose both by force. And this will be the very, very hard way. It looks like Japan is choosing the hardest of all ways, and given its weaker position to begin with, nature’s correction is likely to be hard indeed.
Propagate the necessary new ideas.

December 11, 2017

The Propagandists: Gates Foundation and Cornell’s “Alliance for Science”


Cancer has its own propaganda bureau

Cornell’s “Alliance for Science” has literally zero to do with science and is in fact aggressively anti-science by any measure of scientific method. On the contrary, it is a corporate front group funded by the Gates Foundation. The Gates Foundation, in turn, is 1. a tax dodge for big Microsoft shareholders, 2. an organization which coordinates corporate profiteering on the one hand with technocratic religious fundamentalism on the other. The Foundation works to coordinate the actions of these two groups for their mutual aggrandizement. Bill Gates himself straddles the two worlds of gutter profiteering and religious fanaticism.
This front group is perhaps the most clear-cut example of how corporate money can directly purchase propaganda under the name of “science” on university campuses, and how the STEM fraternity as a whole willfully, consciously, with malice aforethought shills for this massive academic fraud. It is an example of what the Mafia calls sticking up for Cosa Nostra, “Our Thing”. The average STEM cadre, and many post-graduate types in general, is completely ignorant about genetic engineering and GMOs but does know that a hard core of the fraternity is fanatically in support of this campaign, and that’s all these authoritarian followers need to know: It’s Our Thing. Much like with the culture war over vaccination, the idea of GMOs is being used as an organizational principle. The orchestrators of the campaign seek to organize the fanatics and fellow travellers: Proximately toward corporate goals, ultimately toward far-ranging eugenics and other totalitarian technocratic goals.
As a rule this propaganda group has been too cowardly to debate skeptics under circumstances where it doesn’t have total control and total license to lie. As a rule one prefers not to debate when one is lying and/or has a great preponderance of power. Since both apply in the case of corporate “science”, it’s not surprising that they’ve mostly dodged their critics.
Nevertheless it’s telling that even given the opportunity to use superior force to stomp truth into the ground with their well-amplified and professionally rehearsed lies, the pro-GMO activists are too cowardly to try. As always, they have no confidence in themselves or their lies except in places where they can act as pure thugs and direct shameless liars, like in comment threads.
The fact is that scientists and other technocrats find it harder than anyone to admit they’ve been proven wrong. In complete disregard of the many decades of failure and crime poison-based agriculture has racked up by now, the scientific establishment remains committed to poisonism. This displays the most extreme flat-earth fundamentalism of any cult ever.
Such systematic lies, propagated relentlessly on a global level, enlisting state of the art psychological techniques, bolstered by all that remains of the prestige and legitimacy of science, academia, and journalism, comprise the essence of propaganda, the culture and religion of the lie, whose theology permeates the scientism-technocracy cult to the core.
They don’t mind failure, lack of truth, outright lying. They feel no shame. This is because they believe as an article of religious faith that there’s no difference between power and truth. They intone with Hegel, “The powerful is the rational.” Their answer to Pilate’s question “What is truth?” is, “Whatever power can do.” They snarl with the Athenians at Melos, “The strong do what they can, the weak suffer what they must.”
This goes with their dogmatic denial that any variation in the state of something can add up to any value at all (for example, health vs. illness or injury) which should override their totalitarian will to manipulate and control as far as their technological capacity allows.
Power is truth, might makes right: This is the core fundamentalist tenet of all establishment STEM types. This is also why they can so easily subordinate themselves to temporal, especially corporate*, power.
They intend to use corporate and government power, up to and including the ultimate extremes of violence, to force their vision to become reality. They have faith that they will be able to do this. Thus they’re serene in their faith that they have possession of “truth”.
It matters not that today they do nothing but lie; here truth vs. falsehood is only a matter of mundane chronology. It will all become true in the future.
And the future also is now, since what really matters where it comes to GMOs, the Singularity, colonizing space, geoengineering, the rapture of nuclear war, is always the idea of these as this idea exists right now. These ideas are weapons of war and notes of religious certitude. The reality of these, the objective fact that none can accomplish any of the benefits claimed for it and can bring only destruction, is meaningless.
Force, power will be enough to make it all come true in the temporal reality, if this force wages war aggressively enough on behalf of these ideas and isn’t confronted with even more powerful opposing ideas whose own power is in their real Truth.
And history then will be rewritten to wipe out the prior temporal failure, and this too will cease to exist.
This is the propagandist’s role in this final war. This is the role of the corporate lie machine. Cornell University, as launderer of the Gates Foundation’s lies, provides a typical example, and one of the most extreme.
Conversely, the equal and opposite reaction is to confront the great machine of lies with the great movement of truth. The War of Ideas is one front of this Third World War already in motion, and one of the few fronts where humanity and Gaia already have the advantage if we can only organize the available forces. The physical war so far is predominantly on the fronts of biological and chemical warfare, and yet so few people realize it. This is the work of the propagandist. One of our first great tasks is to clarify this fact, proclaim it and drive it home to all of humanity, so that the idea of the fact is as clear and tactile as one’s street being under artillery bombardment.
Because physically, what’s already being perpetrated upon us is not far short of that. Spiritually we are 100% there.
*Scientists and engineers admire corporations above all because these pure sociopaths comprise the ultimate form of technocratic rule and the organization of concentrated power for the sake of power and nothing else.
For this latter reason corporations also comprise the ultimate organizational mode of Mammon, the fundamentalism of subordinating and reducing all of reality to money relations.
Propagate the necessary new ideas.

October 19, 2017

The “Green Revolution” and the Food Weapon


From the IMF-imposed debt hole to the literal excavation of the continent for commodity soil mining.

1. Corporate agriculture’s global liquidation campaign must be seen in the overall neoliberal context. In the 1970s Western banks were shocked by the first realization that fossil fuels are finite and that the Extreme Energy Civilization soon will collapse for lack of sufficient fuel, if it doesn’t destroy itself sooner some other way. The first political manifestation was the OPEC crisis, which threatened both physical fuel stocks and the power of the petrodollar. The finance sector roused itself to offer cheap money across the global South to buy fossil fuel energy and the agricultural system based on extreme energy consumption. The Cold War political term for this agricultural strategy was “green revolution”. It really meant nothing but high-energy-consumption revolution, and the only green was the dollars it was designed to empower. US and Western corporate elites bribed and induced Southern elites into running up odious debts payable by “the country”, i.e. the people. To the extent anyone in the South actually believed the lies and false promises, it’s just like the US student debt scam.
2. Having attained this power position through predatory lending and the threat of military intervention, the US corporate state then ordered the countries of the South to eradicate food production and independent community farmers in order to earn currency via cash cropping. In huge numbers the people were driven off their land and into shantytowns. Southern governments were supposed to get dollars by exporting agricultural commodities. But the price plummeted because everyone was exporting the same commodities, including heavily subsidized Western dumping. Meanwhile the forced migrants could “be fed” only by importing Western food commodities. This opened up the range for more dumping, which destroyed the vast majority of Southern food processing and manufacturing. From every angle the agricultural globalization campaign of the US government, the agribusiness cartels, and rich ideologues from the Rockefeller brothers to Bill Gates who coordinate the whole onslaught, is designed and deployed to eradicate all food security of a society. This has been deployed most fully in Asia and Latin America, the main targets of the first “green revolution”. Today Africa is the main target of the “second green revolution” based on GM seeds. Eventually the same total liquidation process is slated to be brought home to the West.
3. This aggravates the target countries’ debt crisis. The intended result always was an even worse debt hole. The money was stolen by Southern elites (often parked back in the same Western banks which lent it, ergo the term “petrodollar recycling”), the alleged responsibility for the debt was imposed on the people. Then the IMF swooped in to demand a “structural adjustment” of the debt. Under the auspices of this sham, the criminal government of the country collaborates with the criminal Western globalization administrator to gut every public institution, every element of civil society, leaving nothing but scorched earth to be ravaged by Western corporations. This was never any solution but only a radical escalation of the predations of the Western finance and agricultural sectors, among others. The abstract structural adjustment (which can exist only because the minds of the people are so self-enslaved, they allow it to exist) has its exact physical analogue in monoculture commodity agriculture for globalized commodity export. The Western goal is the general liquidation of these countries as such. They work to turn the entire country into nothing but a scorched-earth “free trade zone”, a country-wide food desert. That’s the eventual end goal for America itself.
4. From the point of view of the corporate neoliberal system, the people of the targeted country are completely superfluous and can only be a danger. The globalized commodity agricultural system structurally is set up for maximum vulnerability. The elites have the ability, they have the motive. And while no acute genocide event, such as a directly forced mass famine, has been perpetrated yet, the chronic escalation of hunger, malnutrition, poison-induced illness is a long-running willful campaign. No criminologist would have any problem recognizing the latter as a deliberate crime against humanity, nor the fact that the systemic potential for the former is a state of things which is deliberately sustained and intensified, with the possibility of going into acute genocidal action always a possibility.
5. Leaving aside consciously evil motivations, corporate industrial agriculture guarantees mass famine, pandemics, and eventual complete collapse.
6. Humanity has only two possibilities for a future: We mammals can do our best to survive and keep for salvage some worthwhile things while the dinosaurs still dominate. Or, humanity can organize to build a cultural, spiritual, economic, eventually political movement to abolish corporate rule and deploy food sovereignty.

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.

April 30, 2017

The Attack on the Leopold Center and the Destruction of Science


Power dictates what kind of science is done. Most often, research which could benefit humanity is never funded in the first place, and scientists are indoctrinated against seeking to perform such research. Of the potentially infinite number of lines of scientific inquiry, humans can choose only a tiny fraction to pursue. This choice is almost never made on rational/scientific grounds. On the contrary, the choice is made on political and economic grounds and according to political and economic goals. Especially in the modern era of scientific professionalization and specialization, this choice is almost always made by existing political/economic elites. The axiom, “In any era the ruling ideas are the ideas of the ruling class”, is nowhere more true than where it comes to how technology and science are chosen. STEM education takes place within the framework that considers corporate control and corporate profiteering to be normative. This is the water in which it swims, and it’s a rare cadre who even becomes conscious, let alone asks questions.
Less commonly, the system does provide some resources for true scientific inquiry. By this I mean, research which is neutral from the point of view of whether its results will support or condemn capitalist activity. Of course this institutional support is never more than pennies compared to the billions of dollars of public money distributed for avowedly pro-corporate research, i.e. “science” as corporate welfare. But even this piddling amount, which nevertheless is consistently the best investment the establishment ever makes from any objective point of view, is always at great risk of assault by the representatives of corporate power. Today Iowa State University’s Leopold Center for Sustainable Agriculture is slated to be killed off by rerouting most of its funding.
The Iowa state legislature, owned by agribusiness and presiding over the complete destruction of the state’s communities, economy, soil, and environment, just voted to starve the Leopold Center this way. Advocates of sustainable agriculture and real advocates of science are now trying to get the governor to veto the bill.
The modest amount of legislated funding for the Center will instead be redirected to agribusiness interests. This is typical of the massively lopsided funding structure which is dominant everywhere. Few universities have anything remotely like a Leopold Center in the first place but have always been 100% pro-corporate in their funding and research. The Gates Foundation is typical of pro-corporate “philanthropy” in giving a measly few dollars for what are allegedly “sustainable agriculture” projects. It then touts these for propaganda purposes in order to make its actions look scientific and responsive to the public good even as the vast majority of its disbursements are for pro-corporate projects. In a typical example, in the form of Cornell University’s “Alliance for Science” corporate philanthropy and a corporatized university collaborate to set up a junk science propaganda bureau on behalf of the corporate product genre, GMOs. Much of the funding comes from the Gates Foundation. With such gambits they’re following the longstanding pattern of the US government’s foreign aid scams. Almost all USAID money and “food aid” policy goes to pro-corporate and pro-globalization initiatives. USAID funds cosmetically “sustainable” and “eco-friendly” projects only for propaganda purposes, and once they’re away from the media eye these projects are often scams and always come under agency pressure to conform to corporate norms. See Food First’s World Hunger for copious details of USAID’s chicanery.
What does all this mean? Monsanto and the other giants of agribusiness have extracted massive profits. Why do they need a cent of publicly funded R&D help, let alone such a monumental level of corporate welfare? What’s more, in recent years these corporations have been dismantling their own research programs. This is in fact an admission of the intellectual and scientific bankruptcy of the entire industrial agricultural endeavor. In every reality-based way corporate industrial agriculture is a complete failure at every good it promised to deliver, is obscenely wasteful, and is horrifically destructive of human communities, real economies, the environment, and the soil and genetic basis of all future agriculture.
The only thing propping up the whole destructive mess is the current regime of entrenched power. Governments and corporations have enough concentrated power to enforce the domination of corporate industrial agriculture through economic and physical brute force, and that’s all they have. Even this system of force keeps faltering, and the elites keep being forced to concentrate power even further in order to maintain their brute momentum.
Clearly the day has come where actual technological research has reached the point of total attenuation and diminished returns, while science long ago disavowed industrial agriculture as a destructive failure. The day has come where the elites of the system no longer have any use at all for actual science. When an Iowa legislator flippantly says that the Leopold Center “has completed its mission” he’s speaking far more broadly and profoundly than he knows. Indeed from the corporate point of view all of science has completed its mission. At the same time their use of the idea of “science” as a fraudulent theme for propaganda and organization is becoming increasingly critical. This corporate propaganda project goes with the attempts of the scientism religion to sustain and aggrandize itself. Here we see the core of how corporate power and pseudo-science fundamentalism increasingly find their interests and goals to be identical.
Since power dictates what kind of science is done, it also dictates how truly rational and rigorous the practices are, and how honest and forthcoming the practitioners are about the results. The result is the same age-old practice of power: Establishment “science”, having been chosen to protect and increase the power of elites, is also practiced in order to bring about the elites’ desired result, not the result that rationality in search of truth would attain. The result is then publicized, not in an open, honest, descriptive way, but as a form of political propaganda, with all the usual propaganda methods applied to it, from suppression to secrecy to cherry-picking to distortion to tendentious interpretation to flat-out lies.
Therefore the Cornell Alliance’s pseudo-science is far more typical of today’s corporate science establishment than is any legitimate scientific research. The astronomically lopsided funding imbalance reflects this, assaults on the few legitimate scientific institutions like the Leopold Center reflect this, and most of all the near-consensus among system types that there’s simply no science left to be done at all wherever corporate PR themes are normative reflects this. Cornell and Gates, and the cultist fanboys who sign on to the lists circulated by the Cornell website, are smug in their fundamentalist assurance that whatever the Monsanto PR department decrees is the essence of science, no more and no less.
This is also the religious faith of the pro-corporate cadres and fanboys who “marched for science”. Where are they when it comes time to fight for a beleaguered practitioner of science like the Leopold Center? They’re nowhere to be seen because they’re part of the corporate consensus which believes that science = money and money = science. They’re part of the corporate science paradigm which decrees: Science is nothing more or less than whatever the corporations say it is. By now all of corporate science, which means almost all institutional science, including all research programs, is nothing but propaganda, part of a massive lie machine.
We see the basic fact. Where it comes to agronomic and ecological science, at the very least they don’t want to know. The corporate-dominated system doesn’t want to know, the average scientist and “marcher for science” doesn’t want to know, the average voter doesn’t want to know. If they wanted to know, the Leopold Center wouldn’t be getting the axe. If they wanted to know, the Leopold Center would be far more lavishly funded, and there would be hundreds of university centers just like it. If they wanted to know, they wouldn’t be actively or tacitly supporting Big Ag’s publicly funded lie machine. And this leads us to the fact that the system goes far beyond not wanting to know. It actively, systematically suppresses truth and all legitimate inquiry which would seek truth. The corporate system and the scientific establishment which is its helpmate together comprise a complete culture of the lie.
Therefore it’s easy to see why the Leopold Center for Sustainable Agriculture is so odious, not just to corrupt legislators but to the whole culture of scientism and corporate “science”. Its founding mission, as encoded in the 1987 Iowa Groundwater Protection Act, is triply scientific in the true sense of the term and therefore abhorrent to corporate science and those who are religiously committed the paradigm:

(1) Identify the negative environmental and socioeconomic impacts of existing agricultural practices, (2) research and assist the development of alternative, more sustainable agricultural practices, and (3) inform the agricultural community and general public of the Center’s findings. It is important to recognize that this mandate creates, by design, a dynamic tension between conventional and alternative forms of agriculture. This tension is a healthy part of the Center’s work; it does not indicate the Center is failing to fulfill its mission or communicate effectively. The Center has a particular responsibility to focus on the environmental problems of agriculture and their solution.

According to the concept of the scientific method there is in fact supposed to be intense, thorough-going dynamic tension within the scientific community as everyone always works to see if they can falsify the work of everyone else. The fact that today’s corporate and scientific establishment and their parrots in the media and among techno-fanboys find such tension and falsification work to be intolerable is proof that there’s little left of legitimate science within the system framework. Within the limits of establishment research and publicity frameworks, we’re currently in a post-science and pre-science era where actual science has no room left. Only when the forces of human and ecological opposition become kinetic and destroy this destructive system will they open up the space for human innovation, including scientific innovation, to resume. But today we live in the time of the total bottleneck. The corporate system will do all it can to prevent every human and ecological attempt to restore the balance and resume human and evolutionary freedom.
Therefore, the Leopold Center is being targeted in part because it challenges the culture of lying and debunks the lies. It debunks the lies of industrial agriculture and exposes its failures and destructiveness. But we can’t stress enough that the Leopold Center’s primary activity is not this direct debunking. Rather, the Center assists and helps fund the rising community food sector which Big Ag rightly sees as its mortal enemy. The Center is targeted for assassination not because of its criticism, but because of its affirmative role toward the necessary great global transformation to agroecology.
Help propagate the necessary ideas.

March 3, 2017

The “Drought” Lie, Amid Power Struggles in Kenya


Set up to die of thirst

Set up to die of thirst

GMO field trials are part of a power struggle among Kenyan officials. The National Biosafety Authority (NBA) gave the Kenyan Agricultural and Livestock Research Organization (KALRO) and the African Agricultural Technology Foundation (AATF) the go-ahead for open-air field trials of GM maize. These are publicly funded organizations which perform corporate research on the taxpayer dollar, with the product then privatized at the juncture most profitable for the corporations. The AATF is funded by the Gates Foundation, Cornell University, and USAID. The first two of these specialize in transforming public money into corporate welfare. USAID is a de jure government body explicitly dedicated to capitalist goals.
Health and environmental officials have blocked the approval on the grounds that Kenya’s existing ban on GM imports applies to field trials within the country as well. Evidently they have enough clout to force a deadlock. I’m not well enough versed in internal Kenyan politics to know the underlying issues of the power struggle, but our default always is to assume no government official has any principled objection to any GMO deployment. Our attitude toward any such delay must be to do what we can to encourage and support it but never to regress to any faith-based view of government.
The US government will be displeased. The US has been pressing Kenya to commit to the GMO campaign for many years, since the inception of its “New Alliance” plan for a “second Green Revolution in Africa”. This is a typical US-fomented “color” revolution indeed. (The “green” revolution was so-named in the 1960s in contradistinction to “red” rhetoric. It’s a Cold War propaganda term.)
(I stress, the US government, which remains the same no matter which criminal heads it up. Many people seem especially confused about that these days. But in 2009 the Obama/Clinton state department, in one of its first memos to department personnel defining the new administration’s priorities, included using US muscle to force “Government acceptance of genetically modified food and propagation of genetically modified crops” at the top of its list of the attacks it planned in Africa.)
The article says Kenya has been importing maize from Mexico and Ukraine “because of drought.” Maize yields in Kenya have been halved “because of drought.”
This is standard deceptive framing. “Drought” almost always is an artificial problem. Drought happens when a society deploys modes of cultivation and grows crop varieties which aren’t well-suited to the rainfall conditions of the region. Historically, drought was seldom a problem for traditional agriculture, and today it’s seldom a problem for agroecology, for these are designed to be diverse and resilient in the event of dry seasons. It’s only industrial commodity monoculture which is designed to be highly vulnerable to drought.
What’s more, today’s increasingly volatile rainfall patterns and periods of low rainfall are features of the climate chaos being driven most of all by that same industrial agriculture. This sector is the worst greenhouse gas emitter and by far the worst destroyer of carbon sinks.
In both these ways “drought” is a man-made, intentional crisis. And as we see here, in classic exploitation manner the drought which is driven intentionally by corporate agriculture then is used as a propaganda pretext on behalf of GMOs. These would only escalate the crisis since GMOs do nothing but escalate every pathology of corporate industrial agriculture. GMOs require even more water and synthetic fertilizer (the primary source of nitrous oxide emissions, a far more potent greenhouse gas than carbon dioxide) than non-GM crops.
The solution to all these artificially and intentionally generated problems – food insecurity, drought, climate chaos, hunger – is one and the same solution, and it is the only solution. Humanity must abolish corporate agriculture and transform its food production to agroecology. Even amid such a hostile political environment agroecology is accomplishing great things already in Africa. Agroecology is a fully demonstrated science and set of practices and is ready today for full global deployment, wherever humanity has the wisdom and will to do it.
Meanwhile everyone knows the quote: Insanity/stupidity/evil is doing the same thing over and over while expecting/claiming to expect a different result. Nowhere is this more true than with GMOs.
Please propagate these pieces.

February 14, 2017



They hate food. (They hate the fact that we have to eat.) They hate the Earth. They hate the literal soil, the “dirt”. They hate the human body.
If for the time being they have no choice but to inhabit bodies which need food, they want to render it all as abstract, fictive, clinical, bureaucratic, technological as possible. For the same reason they want as much as possible to remove all direct human participation from food production and remove all contact with nature. They want to render the soil as inert and sterile and dead as possible and then jolt it with synthetic fertilizer. They want to sunder its contact with the rain and wind by rendering it dependent on irrigation water supplied by high-energy systems. They dream of covering all crop fields with black tarps and using only artificial light for photosynthesis. They want to use poisons to kill, not just “pests” but all life other than the crop itself. The fact that industrial agriculture is extremely wasteful in its use of fertilizers and pesticides, and the fact that GMOs are designed to maximize the use and waste of pesticides, is wasteful only from a rational point of view. From the point of view of technocracy and the scientism religion, maximal deployment of synthetic poison, through external application and by engineering crops to ooze poison from every cell, is an ideological value in itself. They do it on principle.
Besides maximizing pesticide use, from the cult’s perspective the main purpose of GMOs, and of corporate control of seed in general, is the religious principle of enclosing the seed and the genes, and therefore the physical crop, within the ritual of patenting. However artificial and fictive this is from a rational point of view, if the technocracy cult can convince enough people religiously to believe in intellectual property, and especially the patenting of life, and if this cult can convince the thug arm of the state to use force and the threat of force on behalf of this fiction, it becomes real. The crop now verily is something “new”. In some way it has been abstracted from the hated ecology.
Throughout the history of industrial agriculture and its Green Revolution, culminating in herbicide tolerant GM crops, the system has striven to be “labor saving”, aka job destroying, has been designed to purge as much human participation from the system as possible. Human beings are to be wiped out as farmers, wiped out as laborers, wiped out as communities, wiped out as people living on the land. This campaign has been most overt across the Global South, but it intends to encompass all of humanity. Human beings are to be wiped out as producers and eaters of food, since each of these human activities are odious to the technocrats and scientism cultists. Only as agents conveying money, as moneyed consumers, are human beings to be granted the right to exist at all.
In all the goal is to render food as abstract, technocratic, mechanized, chemical, biotechnological as possible. Monsanto’s goal always has been to remove all nature from the seed. Robert Fraley envisioned Monsanto becoming the “Microsoft of seeds”. By this he meant not just the mundane goals of greed and monopoly power. More profoundly he thought Monsanto’s transgenes would comprise the fundamental software of all agriculture, with the physical seeds and crops being just the stupid, fungible, cheap factory-produced hardware. Lots of people tried to tell them agriculture doesn’t work that way, that on the contrary the transgene is a stupid, messy gewgaw dependent upon the quality of germplasm in which it resides. For a long time the company wouldn’t listen.
After some years of stubbornness Monsanto had to concede to reality. But the company fixed its ignorance of agronomy only under duress. Their attitude has not changed. To this day they resent having to temporize, they resent having had to buy all those seed companies. They’re still trying to figure out how to impose maximum monopoly control with minimum real-world apparatus or indeed contact with physical reality at all.
This is the grail of all corporations, themselves such fictions rendered real only by the violence of the state and the inertia of the people. The sector comprising corporate agriculture and food, along with its lead enablers from the state, like USAID and the USDA, and from the world of private philanthropy, led by the Gates and Rockefeller Foundations, thinks exclusively in terms of Mammon’s fictive numbers. The measure of agriculture is never food for human beings but sanctified fake numbers like GDP, trade balances, sovereign debt, commodity and stock prices, corporate profits, money as such. These pure fictions are rendered real only by the corporate state’s violence and the tolerance of the people. Thus the corporate/government/NGO structure is able globally to impose and enforce the agricultural model which conforms to these measures and eradicates, as much as possible, all actual food production for human beings.
In all these ways the goal is to render it as literally true as possible that food is produced by money, that food comes from the supermarket.
The entire corporate system is dedicated to enforcing the religion of Mammon to its ultimate extreme, where the only relationships which shall exist shall be between sterile objects, preferably legal fictions like corporations, patents, titles and money, while all ecological relationships, all relationships between human and human, human and Earth, shall be eradicated. These relationships are to cease to have any right to exist, and then cease to exist in the most literal sense. This is the logical end of all theory and practice of the profit-seeking corporation. As we see every day, the corporations at all times are working aggressively toward this end.
So we have the situation:
Corporations regard human beings as superfluous, potentially dangerous, and would prefer they simply disappear from the earth.
Technocrats regard human beings as superfluous, potentially dangerous, and would prefer they simply disappear from the earth.
Corporations regard the Earth as literally nothing but a resource mine and waste dump.
Technocrats regard the Earth as literally nothing but a resource mine and waste dump.
Here we have perfect accord on an ideology, an economic system, and a technology set dedicated to rendering the vast majority of human beings superfluous and worthless in the most literal sense of the term. In the same way there’s perfect agreement on the complete destruction of the global ecology.
What do you think follows from that? Especially as the people stop being so patient, so tolerant, so inertial.
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