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April 6, 2017

Retread GMOs

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The trendiest new lie about GMOs is the only thing new about them. This is the lie that there’s “new” kinds of what are really the same old GMOs.
 
Even the lie itself isn’t new. In form it simply repeats the hoary old debunked lie about the alleged “precision” of genetic engineering. The new version goes, “These new technologies really are precise, honest and for true this time!” These fake “new” versions of the same old extremely imprecise GMOs include CRISPR “gene editing” and similar “new breeding technologies”, RNA interference, gene drives, and synthetic biology. Sites like Independent Science News and SynBioWatch do excellent work describing in detail how these function and how scattershot and dangerous they are. As a group these need an appropriately informative and disparaging term like “retread GMOs.”
 
You don’t like GMOs? Look how they’re making GMOs even more radical, less precise, more chaotic, more potentially destructive. We already know there’s no overall precision and that genetic engineers have no idea what they’re doing. Therefore every time you hear anyone from the system say they’re becoming more “precise” you know this is nothing but a measure of their deepening delusion, and of their constant will to force their kind of manipulation and control over all of humanity and nature.
 
In general “experts” never sustain competence because their egomania and congenital drive toward ever greater manipulation and the idea of control always trump any desire they may have for true understanding and competence.
 
Thus, even if on rare occasions knowledge and practice actually were to stabilize, and the experts of the moment really did understand what they were doing, they could never remain stable at this position. They quickly would drive the situation into chaotic territory, and therefore they quickly would revert to incomprehension and incompetence. The more extremely high-energy and high-maintenance technology and its support structures become, the more wasteful and destructive the results of this incompetence become. The only thing reliably constructed is the further concentration of wealth and power, for as long as the corporate technocratic system exists, until its incompetence, wastefulness, and destructiveness become so extreme that the system consumes and destroys itself. Therefore a core task of the abolition movement is to conserve itself through this period of technocracy’s self-destruction.
 
If the Peter Principle is a law of system hierarchies (and goes some way toward describing the self-wastefulness and self-destructiveness), we can adduce a companion principle which applies to every type of technical expert: Their inertia always is strongly toward the zone of incomprehension and incompetence. Experts are not conservatives and never seek to conserve understanding and competence. They’re always nihilistic radicals, bomb-throwers. A core task of the abolition movement is to conserve real knowledge, real science, real competence, and abolish the fake versions along with the nihilism that drives them.
 
With the retread GMOs the engineers simply are retreading their previous paths of imprecision, incomprehension, willfully driven chaos, willfully driven waste and destruction. As with previous GMOs, they have no idea of the complexity of the effects of their “new” techniques. Even where the technical procedure seems superficially more “precise”, its chaotic effects are every bit as unpredictable as the most blunderbussing gene gun. Even the most precise cut can have extreme chaotic effects. Meanwhile, faster “sequencing” capabilities give engineers only the same small, uncontexted fragment of information they had before. It merely speeds up ignorance and enhances the arrogance of stupidity which is the defining trait of technocrats.
 
Genetic engineering aspires to bring all of life under technological control and eugenic manipulation. The escalated use of computerized mechanization to perform the engineering is designed to escalate this program of control and manipulation by further removing the concept of life from the realm of ecology and into the realm of software and data manipulation. This is the better to deny evolution and disparage ecology, and bring real life under the conceptual, and eventually the actual physical control of eugenic technology and legalistic computer and intellectual property fictions. This is another manifestation of Monsanto’s original plan to become the “Microsoft of agriculture”, with its transgenic traits serving as the hegemonic “software” controlling all the stupid “hardware” of agriculture and food. The ultimate goal of course is to attain this reified control over all of physical reality.
 
This notion of attaining physical dominion and control via computer data and its synthesized physical extension, including fantasies about artificial intelligence, is a typical fiction of the Mammon and scientism religions. Bits of code are just another fictive number, and all cults stemming from them are just another branch of numerology.
 
Mammon usually is conceived as greed or, more precisely, the belief that money is real, and the religious worship of this reified money. But this can be boiled down further to the belief that fictive numbers are real, and the worship of these numbers. Love of money is just the most common and visible form of this cult worship. But this kind of worship also is the core of the scientism/technocracy religion.
 
If science is the branch of philosophy that focuses on developing methods to produce precise numbers as a conception and reflection of the qualitative diversity of reality, then scientism is the religious cult which then is built by the practitioners of science and their followers. They reify these numbers, convince themselves the numbers in themselves are “real” rather than a philosophical abstraction, and turn reality completely upside down by convincing themselves that this superficial abstraction of reality is actually the true reality, and actual reality just the abstraction. (Thus they recapitulate the program of the British and German solipsistic philosophers.) They come to worship these numbers. And since they can manipulate the numbers at will, it follows that actual physical reality, to them a mere abstraction, also is infinitely manipulable at their command. In this way they use the religious vehicle of numerology to transform themselves, in their own minds, into gods. This sums up their religious belief system.
 
Their preferred propaganda term “new breeding technologies” (NBT) is a window into their mindset. They claim we need new techniques since sexuality within the framework of evolution is, according to technocracy, insufficient. This begs the question, “insufficient for what?” Self-evidently evolution is sufficient for the entire reality of humanity and the Earth. It could be insufficient only from the perspective of a radically anti-human, anti-ecological, anti-evolution agenda. This is indeed the totalitarian agenda of technocracy.
 
 
From there it’s easy to see how the worshipers of pseudo-scientific numbers join hands with the worshipers of monetary numbers, and how easily these fraternal sects always have worked together. They’re two shades of the same color. Because they share the goal of using their numbers to attain control of humanity and the Earth, they’ve always easily formed a strategic and tactical alliance for their political, economic, and ecological assaults.
 
 
It’s self-evident that such a monstrous campaign of religious fanaticism cannot be “regulated”. To use the terminology of the system regulation paradigm, it can’t be “managed”, can’t be “risk-assessed”, humanity cannot set “tolerances” for it. The fact is humanity and the Earth cannot co-exist with corporate scientism. We must abolish it, its mindset, its crimes. Therefore we need to propagate the abolition idea and build the abolition movement.
 
Unfortunately there’s another standard retread going on, and that’s the retread among critics of GMOs and poisonism who seem unable to liberate themselves from the “regulation” paradigm. Indeed, this paradigm is itself part of technocracy, and the unreconstructed pro-regulation types reveal themselves to be waging a campaign of reformism within the framework of corporate technocracy, including the framework of considering corporate dominion and genetic engineering to be normative. Indeed, by their own testimony many of these persons are pro-GMO. Often they openly admit their support for laboratory testing of GMOs and for fraudulent medical applications of genetic engineering. They oppose only specially selected agricultural applications, evidently on an arbitrary basis.
 
But this basis cannot provide the necessary philosophical and spiritual foundation of humanity’s great resistance and liberation movement. Worse, it seeks to keep all thought and action imprisoned within the framework of “co-existence” with poisonism within the technocratic framework. But co-existence is impossible, and propaganda for it is evil.
 
It often is worthwhile to condemn the system’s refusal to perform real safety tests, refusal to undertake real regulation, refusal to properly label GMOs, refusal to enforce existing laws which require banning cancer agents, and its general refusal to act according to the principles of need, alternatives, and precaution, when this criticism is undertaken within the context of an explicit abolitionist framework. (Most pertinently, these derelictions comprise strict proof that the system knows or believes pesticides and GMOs to be extremely harmful to human and environmental health. Therefore its motive in forcing them upon humanity and the Earth must be malignant.) But to cite these for their own sake automatically presumes the impossible and pernicious co-existence framework. And of course to still advocate, as one’s actual program, things like labeling, “better testing”, and the precautionary principle, all those ships that sailed so long ago, is by now nothing but reactionary.
 
Therefore the point no longer is to say “we need better EPA regulation of pesticides”, or “CRISPR needs to be regulated as other GMOs” (the same people who say this also acknowledge that regulation of regular GMOs was never adequate), but rather:
 
We know that all pesticides are cancerous, don’t work anyway, and never can be “regulated”. Therefore we must abolish them completely.
 
We know that all genetic engineering is extremely imprecise and chaotic, highly dangerous, has never worked for its avowed purposes, and has no constructive purpose. Therefore we must abolish it completely.
 
 
 
 
 
Help propagate the new and necessary ideas.
 
 
 

February 14, 2017

Humanfrei

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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.
 
 
 

October 3, 2016

Black Horse Chronicle, October 3rd

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1. The black horse bears its balances across a blasted, haunted landscape hung with the night of ignorance. You stare hypnotized at the scales as they seem to weigh all love and food in exact proportion to a cairn of coins, and don’t see how the whole world comes unbalanced, tips and turns over.
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2. Break free, shake off, lift your eyes and look! The world is upside down. The world – the great trinity, God, Humanity, Earth – is sprawled in devastation. All degree is disrupted, all balance is lost. The black rider is the master of illusion and the propagator of conceit.
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(3. We see why the devil’s most cherished playthings are not even the material products of technology but the propaganda chimeras of scientism, the things which barely exist at all except as fantasies and delusions and lies, such as genetic engineering, artificial intelligence, space travel, or the peaceful use of nukes. This especially resides in anticipation of the all too real use of them in war.
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4. But we see the great confluence of fantasies of Mammon as the economic golems, the government’s corporate persons and the Fed’s money and Wall Street’s securities and the devil’s own “intellectual property” clasp and fuse with the technological golems of the scientism cult. If the term “seeds” may be used to encompass the Satanic patenting onslaught upon life itself, literal life enclosed within the false and fictive slave bounds of patents, then we can take the longstanding political acronym FIRE (Finance, Insurance, Real Estate, as the first three great horsemen of the apocalypse of the false, self-cannibalizing meta-economy) and amend it to the FIRES sector. Verily it does describe the great bonfire of all human productivity, prosperity, happiness, and hope. This tyrannical economy of Babylon is based upon literally nothing but fictions and lies.)
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5. Thus Belial once again earns his title, Lord of Lies. The devil wouldn’t stand a chance without the multitudes who yearn to believe his lies. He’s not even a good liar, and his worldly minions are pathetically incompetent. But with the sinful credulity of masses, all things become possible.
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6. As the legion of corporate demons rampages over the earth and throughout our minds and souls, as the black rider of Revelation brandishes the scales as broadcast by the book, the book’s descriptions of the churches of John’s time still reverberate. The divisions are timeless. Thus book still sends its word to the Ephesians: You’ve worked hard, “not fainted”, supported the true activists both of radicalism and of reform, and rejected the explicit corporate liars. But you still dream of a solution within the corporate Babylon and even contemplate the “leaving of your first love” to the corporate demon state’s control. Thus it is with anyone who still yearns to place the business of the ecotrinity of God, Humanity, and the Earth under the domination of the corporate state; they all leave and lose their first love. Co-existence is impossible and such surrender will never be anything but complete and forever. “She that hath an ear, let her hear what the Spirit says unto the churches; To him that overcomes will I give to eat of the tree of life, which is in the midst of the paradise of God.”
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7. To Smyrna goes the exhortation to keep fighting as you have, and continue your works, in spite of the tribulations you must face. “She that overcomes shall not be hurt of the second death”, but “shall receive a crown of life”. “He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says unto the churches.”
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8. Pergamos endures amid a bedeviled circumstance and has “held fast” and “not denied faith” while Thyatira demonstrates exemplary “charity, and service, and faith, and patience, and works; and the last to be more than the first.” But they are spiritually confused and prone to backsliding, as their affinity with Babylon and yearning for compromise and co-existence blinds them to the ultimate impossibility of their path. Worse, their blindness and corruption extends to toleration and embrace of idolatry and superstition toward various corporate hoaxes and civics textbook lies. “You suffer that woman Jezebel, which calls herself a prophetess, to teach and to seduce my servants to commit fornication, and to eat things sacrificed unto idols.”
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9. Today’s Sardis “has a name that you live, and are dead.” Indeed we endure daily an invasion of the undead hordes, dead names which still find sinfulness and credulity with which to conjure among the masses. Today the very word “politics” is the deadest of names and most virulently mesmerizing of zombies. The true politics of life is a fully participating way of life and is as growing food and pumping water. And so every idea of the mind and vibration of the spirit may proceed along the line of life, which leads resolutely away from Babylon forever, or down the pit of death. “He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says unto the churches.”
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10. The good word hails the stalwarts of Philadelphia. Especially across the bright crest of the Earth the faithful and courageous fight with clear minds, brave hearts, pure souls.
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“I know your works: behold, I have set before you an open door, and no man can shut it…Because you have kept the word of my patience, I also will keep you from the hour of temptation, which shall come upon all the world, to try them that dwell upon the earth…She that overcomes will I make a pillar in the temple of my God, and she shall go no more out: and I will write upon her the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, which is new Jerusalem, which comes down out of heaven from my God: and I will write upon her my new name. She that has an ear, let her hear what the Spirit says unto the churches.”
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11. Scraping the bottom of the barrel, the lukewarm Laodiceans are still with us and still seek to smother all sparks which bring fire and life. “I know your works, that you are neither cold nor hot: I would you were cold or hot. So then because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spit you out of my mouth.” Jesus deplores the lukewarm and prefers to them even the cold, not because he endorses the cold, but because recognition of the cold and confrontation with it is necessary for the hot to attain its full flame and spread its sparks to all possible tinder. We need the great conflagration, we need the majestic speedy wildfire. But the lukewarm, falsely in the name of warmth, want to dump the swill to douse all sparks and preempt all future life.
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Let Jesus make it clear once and for all: “How can Satan cast out Satan? And if a kingdom be divided against itself, that kingdom cannot stand. And if a house be divided against itself, that house cannot stand. And if Satan rise up against himself, and be divided, he cannot stand, but has an end.” (Mark 3:23-26)
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This ultimately shall be part of the downfall of Babylon and the corporate dominion, as there is such division among its constituency. But a faithful few forced into dissidence and exile do not have the luxury of dividing against ourselves. We haven’t this luxury in mind, where so many divide a corporation, or a government bureaucracy, or a technology, or a propaganda campaign, or Babylon as a monolithic whole, into a schizophrenic duality and seek to find the devil to love and cherish amid the devil to oppose. We haven’t this luxury in action, which follows divided on account of this duality, derelict from the great need and necessity even as it acknowledges the need. We haven’t this luxury in spirit, where every sign in heaven and earth calls us to a triune ecological holism, God and Humanity and Gaia, unbroken, seamless, One.
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January 28, 2016

The Fox and the Framework (Rejecting the Corporate Science Paradigm)

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Under the corporate science paradigm there’s no such thing as a conflict of interest. Colloquially, we often say journalists or scientists or government officials have a “conflict of interest”, though usually it’s difficult to detect any conflict whatsoever; they’re clearly 100% for the corporate imperative. This is often in part because of mundane corruption. But there’s a deeper reason for this lack of a conflict. The fact is that usually there is no conflict except on the most superficial propaganda level (i.e. the person lies about being something he’s not and doesn’t see himself as). But structurally the very notion of a conflict of interest is a misunderstanding and a myth.
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By definition a corporation can have no conflict of interest. Corporations are sociopathic in principle and always in the practice that derives from this principle. In principle the only corporate value is maximizing power as measured by profit. Scientific truth and public health do not exist as values for the corporation.
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Therefore in principle the corporate version of science is supposed to produce, not an objectively truthful result, but the result which is most useful propagandistically for the corporation. This is no abuse of science. Rather, it’s quite simply what normal science is in any context dominated by corporations. This science paradigm, where “science” means whatever the corporate marketing department says it means, I have dubbed the corporate science paradigm.
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This is the first, principled, structural reason why anyone who does value public health, environmental health, and scientific truth must reject out of hand all testimony from corporations and their factotums, including testimony from the corporate regulators and corporate scientific establishment which operate under the corporate science paradigm.
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The second reason is that no sane, rational person would ever trust the fox to guard the hen-house. This would be true even if we didn’t know a particular fox. This was always straight rationality and common sense. By now we also have the entire historical evidence record proving that the corporation will always lie whenever its profit is at stake. We can call this the Fox Rule. This, as we discussed above, is what a corporation is supposed to do, in principle. If we don’t want to live with organizations which are designed with this mission, if we recognize that it’s impossible for humanity to coexist with formally psychopathic organizations, then we must abolish the corporate form.
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The Fox Rule is always true of every big corporation. Monsanto and Dow are especially egregious examples. Their records of falsehood are perfect. Therefore no rational person or agency would place any value other than zero on the testimony of Monsanto and Dow or any chemical corporation where it comes to the safety and scientificality of their products and research. We must reject out of hand all corporate testimony attesting to itself.*
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Yet under the corporate science regime, regulators always accept the corporation’s own testimony about its profitable products as the state of science. This is because corporate regulators exist to serve the corporate “client”, as the regulators call them, so it follows that from the point of view of a regulator like the EPA or FDA or USDA science is nothing more than whatever the corporation says it is. So the regulator accepts the corporate version of science on ideological principle. The regulator not only accepts the corporation’s self-testimony but accepts only this testimony while defining independent science and epidemiological science in general out of existence. Therefore we must reject out of hand all pro-corporate regulatory declarations. These are regurgitated directly from the corporate decree and convey nothing but the original corporate lies.
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A third reason to reject all testimony and findings of corporations and their regulatory counterparts is that corporate science is also overwhelmingly secret science. But “secret science” is a contradiction in terms according to the Popperian idea of the scientific method. On the contrary, by definition the only data which could count as part of the scientific record is public data, and the only scientific conclusions are those derived from public data. Therefore by definition anything secret or derived from secrecy cannot be part of science, but is merely anti-scientific innuendo and rumor puffed up into propaganda. We must reject out of hand all “secret science”, on principle.*
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The proximate reason for all the secrecy is of course that these corporate products don’t work and are extremely poisonous to humans, animals, and ecosystems. Therefore the corporation requires extreme secrecy in order to cover up the gross evidence even its own fraudulently designed research uncovers.
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But a bias in favor of secrecy is also inherent to the corporate science paradigm. This is because corporations are bureaucracies, and bureaucracies are inherently autocratic and secretive. It’s also because corporate capitalism is based heavily on pseudo-“competition” and intellectual property. These phenomena require each corporation to maintain a high level of secrecy about all its actions including its scientific affairs. Therefore it follows that the corporate science paradigm allows and privileges secret science. This proves that corporate science is the radical antithesis of Popperian ideas of science, enshrined in the conventional notions of the scientific method, falsification, and science as a constructive contributor to an open society. To whatever extent practicing scientists and the citizens of a democracy claim to embrace these ideas of science, they must recognize that the corporate science paradigm embodies the exact opposite, the most extreme rejection of these ideas, and they must in turn reject corporate science as a whole, completely, as nothing but a pure mass of lies.
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Corporate science is exactly upside down. It is exactly, perfectly wrong. We can state as axioms: Corporate science is a lie; Regulator-vouched science is a lie; Secret science is a lie.
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*The only exception is where the corporate practitioners themselves are unable to cover up adverse results. It’s highly significant how, in spite of the most strenuous efforts on the part of the foxes to deploy false study frameworks, bogus methodology, fraudulent interpretations, and suppression of data, to strip the hen-house bare, nevertheless so many corporate studies still were unable to cover up completely and provided significant evidence of the harmfulness of pesticides and GMOs.
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In such cases we can use this adverse data, assuming all the while that the truth must be far worse. In these cases the truth is so bad that even these masters of obfuscation couldn’t cover up completely.

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January 17, 2016

Religion is All Good and Well….

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….but sometimes they take it to extremes.
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What’s real? Human communities, the interactions among flesh and blood people, our individual and group networks among the earthly ecology. This is what Martin Buber called the “I and Thou.”
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But then people start reifying abstractions. Not just using terms as necessary conceptual placeholders, but believing in the reality of the terms they’re using. These include government, law, money as a unit of account, nation, sect, race, reason, science. In reality none of these are anything but superficial terminology for ecological interactions. But people religiously believe in their existence as if they were physical objects or ecological relations within physical reality. We can call these the first abstraction.
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So far we’ve mentioned the reifications almost everyone engages in, the ones which are part of human nature and may be necessary for human life to flourish. But things get malign when we reach a second abstraction. This is when we take the items of the first abstraction and use those to reify the next exponential level of reification. This is when we use government and law to “create” things like corporations, patents and copyrights, fiat money, and then convince ourselves that these are real. This second religious abstraction is abstraction squared, meta-abstraction.
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It gets worse. The third abstraction is where we so devoutly believe in the corporation that we allow it to create money, and allow it to own patents, and allow it to write the law in both a de facto (through lobbying) and de jure way, and allow it to dictate to the government through the kinds of regulatory agencies which see their duty as to obey and assist the corporate “client”. Those who originally created corporations were aware of the religious radicality of what they’d done in squaring the abstraction, and they were so leery of cubing it that they didn’t allow corporations to own patents or stock (another religious abstraction) in other companies. Those safeguards were eroded and abolished over time, as the religion became more fanatical. By now the religion is becoming extraordinarily self-referential, hermetic, alienated from reality because it’s so wrapped up in its own fictive reality. It’s become a cult.
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The fourth abstraction is where we reach such a fanatical extreme of wretched abasement in our self-loathing worship that we want effectively to abolish all the first abstractions as being still too close to human reality. To whatever extent we still maintain them it’s only as hollow shells to be filled out by the aggrandizement of the second abstractions, the corporation and its dogmatic weapons.
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At this fourth abstraction the corporation is the de jure author of the law, and even more powerfully it controls government by direct decree. This decree power is autocratic in the most unaccountably and capriciously divine sense.
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People clearly believe in these fictive things on a religious level, they have religious faith in their actual existence. This is exactly the same as believing in a god. Money is “real” because enough people believe it’s real and act as if it were, in the same way as with belief in a god and action on behalf of that belief. Belief in the existence (and beneficence) of corporations and intellectual property and corporate “science” is the same kind of religious belief, albeit vastly more destructive and self-destructive than any other religion.
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In abolishing the first abstractions such as nation, (any other) religion, government, law, science, reason, the real target of this evil god is real humanity and the real Earth. The extremist religious cult of the corporation is veritably a murder and suicide cult in the most physically literal sense. We the people need to discredit the idea of corporations and intellectual property, subvert belief in them, and wipe out this noxious cult.
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But to fight such an entrenched religious idea, no matter how wavering the faith in it may be among many of its adherents, requires a more potent spiritual and ecological idea. We must conjure the new idea out of the ecology. It must come from the Earth.
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January 14, 2016

Adapting the Populist Lecture Series for Today’s Food Sovereignty

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Here’s some basic information about 19th century public and farmer education through public lecture programs, as conducted by the Grange and especially the Populist Farmers’ Alliance movement. I’d like to contribute to building a new movement to rebuild community food and agriculture, and abolish corporate agriculture, organized in a way similar to the Populists. We’d have the advantage of trying to build outside the commodity system, rather than being in a race against time to reform it from inside, which is what ultimately undid the Populists.
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For a great book on the history and handbook for true democratic organization, see Lawrence Goodwyn’s The Populist Moment.
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Once upon a time I thought of adapting this idea to what I called the land scandal involving systematic property fraud on the part of the big banks. Did you know that, strictly speaking, most alleged bank-owned residential real estate is arguably not really owned by the banks at all, but rather their claim is an imposture? In 2009-10 many bloggers and commentators thought this fact, if effectively propagated, could become a major political theme. Well, that never happened, and it seems like the whole idea fizzled out. Probably both too “fringey”-seeming, even though legally it’s true, and too abstruse to boot. I ended up moving on from the idea to the more down-to-earth matter of food. Of course there’s plenty of policy mysticism here as well, such as patents, which I’ll soon be discussing in depth. That’s why I’ve long referred to the FIRES sector, adding “Seeds” (i.e. intellectual property in them) to Finance, Insurance, Real Estate. And of course corporate agriculture is more than the physical phenomena of land-grabbing and poison. Under the neoliberal globalization regime it’s also a sham campaign trying to reify fictive numbers – commodity pricing, profit, GDP, trade balance, “growth” in the biotech, agricultural, food, and finance sectors – and induce worship of these, or at least surrender to their domination. One of the greatest evils of corporate rule (the most mystical, bizarre fiction of all is that of the corporate person) is how it has made our literal bread hostage to the insane rule of these pure fictions and superstitions. We intuitively know a few basic principles for the counterattack – all commodification of food and critical natural resources is illegitimate, there can be no patents on life, and a “corporation” cannot own or control land, especially farmland. My background writing about Wall Street will come in handy for all these elements.
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January 5, 2016

How Does Monsanto Plan to Deploy the Terminator on a Mass Scale?

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According to lore, Monsanto halted its drive to commercialize GMOs containing the Terminator gene when Gordon Conway of the Rockefeller Foundation warned the company that its extreme aggressiveness was becoming so politically reckless and counterproductive as to put the entire GMO project at risk.
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Whatever the motivation, it’s true that Monsanto announced in 1999 it was not pursuing commercialization of the Terminator. This was followed in 2000 by an international moratorium on development and commercial approval of this technology, voted under the UN’s Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD). The moratorium was reaffirmed in 2006 at the CBD meeting held in Brazil.
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[The Terminator, AKA a “GURT” (Genetic Use Restriction Technology), is a transgene which would cause the plants containing it to produce sterile seeds. This would render patent enforcement moot, since it would become physically impossible to save and replant seed from such a GMO. Some versions can be rendered fertile, i.e. the Terminator gene can be counteracted if the seed is coated with an antibiotic or some other chemical. So we see how, in addition to simplifying seed monopoly, the Terminator allows those deploying it to dream of inserting it into all commercial crop seed and then forcing all seed growers to buy the antidote from them.
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Could the Terminator spread chaotically to other crops and wild plants, rendering them sterile? As usual with genetic engineering, no one has the slightest idea. Anyone who claims to know this wouldn’t happen is a liar.
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The Terminator was developed jointly by Delta & Pine Land seed company and the USDA. These jointly hold the patent. In the late 1990s Monsanto’s attempt to buy DPL fell through, in part because of political outcry over the prospect of Monsanto’s gaining control of the Terminator technology. But in 2006 Monsanto was able to buy the company with little opposition.]
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We can take it for granted that Monsanto’s own Terminator moratorium has been purely a temporary expedient, and that their plan remains the same as always, to deploy the Terminator on a mass scale. The GURT must look especially attractive as GMOs expand beyond the range of the secure Western intellectual property regime. Brazil is troublesome for IP control in seeds, with many farmers allegedly saving and replanting GM soybeans without paying Monsanto’s tax. This has led to politically draining court battles and the very difficult process of Monsanto’s attempt to force traders to collect the tax on its behalf. Monsanto faces similar headaches collecting its taxes in Argentina. China of course is a problematic market from the point of view of patent enforcement. Africa’s an unknown quantity even if the US/UK/Monsanto colonization plan is able to conquer significant territory. Monsanto’s dream of conquering Iraqi agriculture, impeccable on paper as decreed by the US occupation regime, fizzled out for the inability to enforce it in physical reality.
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It’s clear that Monsanto needs to deploy the Terminator if it’s to have any hope of gaining the total control and power it seeks. So what’s one way this might happen? Here’s a way which seems plausible to me. Let’s list some facts.
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1. Monsanto’s Intacta soybean, developed specially for cultivation in Brazil and commercially introduced in 2013, is the first Monsanto product developed for a non-US market. (Intacta is a stacked product which is Roundup Ready and contains the Cry1AC Bt toxin vs. lepidopteran pests. But in Brazil glyphosate is failing against resistant superweeds and may render the soybean crop more susceptible to fungal infections. Across the world Cry1AC has widely failed in cotton, generating resistant superbugs. Just as Cry1F, deployed in maize GMOs, has widely collapsed in Brazil against the target armyworm, so we can anticipate Intacta’s vulnerability. According to Monsanto itself, feeding upon it may even strengthen some of the intended target pests. A 2015 study also found that Intacta yields less than non-GM conventional soybeans. So Intacta is triply a plagued, failing product just two years after it was put on the market.)
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2. In 2013 Brazilian officials negotiated a deal to export Intacta soybeans to China. In spite of some early indications that China would insist on a non-GM supply, it eventually agreed to accept Brazil’s general soybean commodity stream.
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3. For years China has been trying to develop its own GMO industry. Chinese state enterprises have worked on this themselves (many entries in the Developer list to the right), and perhaps in collaboration with DuPont (the story here is sketchy). In 2015 ChemChina made a bid to buy Syngenta.
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4. China is notorious for being an intellectual property scofflaw. Western patents and copyrights are frequently disrespected there.
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5. Soybeans are the most easily pirated crops, since they’re not hybrids like commodity maize, but open-pollinated.
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6. Obviously Monsanto’s Intacta patents are at some risk here.
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7. In late 2013 pro-Monsanto forces in Brazil launched a new attempt to gut the country’s 2005 Biosafety Law and have the country break the 10+ year moratorium on the Terminator. (These legislative attempts have been ongoing since 2005.) This is ironic since the moratorium was last reaffirmed in Brazil. Proponents claim to want to put the Terminator only in GM eucalyptus and other vegetatively propagated crops, but the proposal has enough loopholes and vagueness as to be indefinitely stretchable. So far this attempt has been beaten back, largely as the result of massive international grassroots pressure organized by the ETC Group. But the pro-GMO activists in the legislature continue to reintroduce the bill.
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8. Brazilian regulators approved GM eucalyptus in 2015.
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There’s the facts. What can we deduce from there? Obviously if the Terminator were to be incorporated in one product, it would quickly be deployed in others. In this case GM eucalyptus would be the camel’s nose in the tent. All of Monsanto’s interests say that Brazil and China are two places it would find the Terminator most useful. Therefore the indications point to Intacta as being the first major GMO into which Monsanto would want to engineer the Terminator gene. Grown in Brazil, exported mostly to China and other non-Western countries – perhaps it might not immediately generate a political firestorm in the West. (Some Intacta is exported to the EU for use in food and feed. European campaigners, recently seconded by a Norwegian government scientific assessment, have opposed it on food safety grounds. But no doubt the EFSA would deem a Terminator version of Intacta not to require a new review.)
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And then, once the Terminator was deployed in one major commercial GMO, it would be expanded to many or all of the others.
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So there’s one plausible scenario for the Terminator’s future.
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Campaigners around the world need to join with ETC and Brazilian campaigners to hinder the GM eucalyptus project and thwart the plan to have Brazil break the Terminator moratorium.
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December 25, 2015

GMO News Summary, December 25th, 2015

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*Bt cotton may be the most failure-prone and fraudulent (as far as the claims made for it) of all widely deployed GMOs. Even where it works temporarily against the target pest (and often it fails even at that), it’s quickly decimated by secondary pests. And it’s never more than a few years before the target bollworm develops resistance. Today the pink bollworm is devastating the cotton crop of India’s Karnataka state. This is in spite of Monsanto’s Bollgard II deploying two Bt toxins, Cry2AB2 and Cry1AC, against this pest. The original Bollgard produced just Cry1AC. That product was overwhelmed by the superbugs years ago.
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Even Keshav Kranthi of the Indian Central Institute for Cotton Research (by no means anti-GMO) admits that no cotton hybrid including the Bt varieties would stand a chance without the seeds being coated with imidacloprid. So once again we see how the “less pesticides” is also a pure fraud. (And that’s not even counting the endotoxins themselves as part of the pesticide load.) So Bt cotton is the ultimate fraud among GMOs which have actually been widely deployed. Of the Indian states, Karnataka has been one of the most grievously bereaved by the small cotton farmer suicide epidemic, and its government has been one of the most exasperated and active in trying to reform the situation. But they’ve still not done nearly enough. Nothing short of completely driving out the ineffective, fraudulent, and malign product will suffice.
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*K.P. Prabhakaran Nair, former Professor of the National Science Foundation, publicly declares that GMOs represent an agricultural paradigm which runs counter to Indian food security. In doing so he agrees with food sovereignty campaigners as well as the supreme court’s specially appointed Technical Expert Committee and two parliamentary committees.
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*Companies who deserve one another. Mahyco-Monsanto Biotech (MMB), which is Monsanto’s main distributorship in India, has complained in court about nine seed contractors which have failed to remit the Monsanto tax on Bollgard II cotton. MMB has now canceled its contracts with three of these companies. The tax is 183 rupees (about $2.77 today) on a 450 gram seed packet. Prices per packet now vary from state to state, from 830 to 1000 rupees (c.$12.60-15.15) for a packet. This inexplicable variation is why the central government, which has imposed controls in the past to try to reduce stabilize obscene seed prices, is undertaking a new round of price control.
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*There was double good news as the furtive congressional attempt to attach the anti-science, anti-democracy DARK Act to the spending bill was thwarted, while a rider supposedly ordering the FDA to institute a labeling policy for GM salmon was attached. In fact there’s considerable ambiguity about whether this law directs the FDA to institute mandatory labeling, or just a voluntary policy.
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GM salmon is a stupid product concept. What difference could it make that the thing grows faster; fish farmers always have new generations coming to maturity anyway. I think that just like with hoaxes like “golden rice” and other worthless “product quality” GMOs like the botox apple, one of the main purposes is as a propaganda exercise, trying to normalize direct GM foods in the diet. And of course the techno-hype, however fraudulent, is supposed to confuse farmers, manufacturers, and retailers, as usual, and therefore be profitable for the patent-holders.
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*At the behest of environmental and public health campaigners, the city council of Barcelona is banning the use of cancer-causing glyphosate in public parks and green spaces. The ban will be phased in over the course of a year. The council cited glyphosate’s propensity to persist in the water and soil and its toxicity to animals.
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*The Swiss Federal Council has announced its decision to extend Switzerland’s moratorium on GM crop cultivation through 2021.
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*Disturbed by the increasing trend of biotech companies obtaining fraudulent patents on conventionally bred crop varieties, and the increasing willingness of the European Patent Office (EPO) to grant such patents, the European Parliament issued a resolution against this fraud and illegality. This is a not a new law, but a resolution demanding that the EPO obey existing law.
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*The UK House of Lords has issued a taxpayer-funded pro-Oxitec manifesto trumpeting the alleged need to release endless generations of genetically engineered insects into the environment, for agricultural as well as disease control purposes. Disease control is already known to be a failure from the field trials which have been conducted in the Caymans, Brazil, and elsewhere. As for crop pest control, the GM insect theme not only censors the fact that agroecology provides the best pest control system, it also implicitly concedes the failure of GM crops and pesticides to control crop pests. Since it’s the GM insect boosters themselves who are saying that previous GMOs don’t work, why should we believe them when they claim these GMOs will work? The same goes for the boosters of CRISPR GMOs, RNAi GMOs, etc.
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As usual with such infomercials, the memo systematically dodges all discussion of actual need, alternatives, and risks. The goal is nothing but propaganda to boost a UK-based company in an important “growth” sector. It identifies the following, not as actual problems, but as stupid public “anxieties” which propaganda must counteract:
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* horizontal gene transfer within the environment
* potential impact on ecosystems
* effects on predator/prey relationships and the food chain
* evolution of more virulent strains of particular pathogens following GM control
* a general feeling that GMOs are unsafe and create risks for individuals and the environment
* the potential for unknown and unintended consequences
* questions about intellectual property, patenting and excessive corporate involvement
* lack of confidence in scientists, companies and governments to understand and appropriately regulate the myriad possible implications of GMOs.

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Never mind that seven of these eight are proven harms and hazards, while the “general feeling” of lack of safety has all the evidence in its favor and no evidence against it.
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*Several US universities as well as the UK’s taxpayer-funded corporate propaganda machine, the so-called “Science Media Centre”, are exposed for having also received lavish funding from Coca-Cola. Sure enough, the “scientists” consulted by the universities and the SMC quickly discovered the benefits of high sugar consumption and pushed this information to the ardently receptive corporate media. This goes the same way as how they’ve previously discovered the benefits and lack of harm from other corporate funders led by the GMO cartel. This is standard for today’s practicing scientists, whether actively or by tacit acceptance. Scientists are exactly like lawyers: The great majority of them will advocate any position they are paid to advocate, and in their hands this paid position then becomes “science” or “the law”.
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*Teenage Canadian food sovereignty and anti-GMO advocate Rachel Parent has been so effective that she’s been targeted personally by the cartel’s thugs including Kevin Folta. She should be proud and invigorated by this evidence of how well she’s doing. I wrote previously about the revelations Parent extracted from Canadian pro-corporate bureaucrats.
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*The Yurok Tribe, the largest Native American group in California, has announced a full ban on GM crop cultivation and the release of GM animals in the Tribe’s territory. This initiative accompanies the tribe’s participation as part of the Northern California Tribal Court Coalition (NCTCC) The Yuroks and NCTCC are co-hosting an Indigenous Food Sovereignty Summit in Klamath in the spring of 2016.

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December 23, 2015

GMOs Are For the Rich Only

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Among the good points this piece makes is that GM salmon is a product designed for wealthier consumers, and can’t possibly affect hunger even in principle.
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This is true of all GMOs. GM maize and soy are not food, but rather are overwhelmingly destined to become animal feed in factory farms generating meat for upper-class consumers. GMOs cannot address hunger even in theory. On the contrary, they make it worse, just like they escalate every other pathology of corporate industrial agriculture.
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So GMOs are a rich man’s technology from the consumer end. They’re also a rich man’s technology from the production end. In order to have any chance of functioning as advertised, these extremely high maintenance products require lavish inputs of fertilizer, pesticides, and irrigation. Small farmers, especially those dependent on rainfall in lower-precipitation regions like India, don’t have a chance.
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Of course, GMOs are most of all a technology for the very rich, the corporations and big shareholders who rake in the vast corporate welfare revenues. GMOs, like much alleged “hi-tech”, are not profitable in any textbook capitalist sense. On the contrary, from any reality-based point of view they’re highly destructive and hemorrhage social wealth. But like much corporate technology they become extremely lucrative when the government lavishes subsidies and intellectual property rights upon them.
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So in all ways GMOs are a product by and for the 1% and for the wealthier strata of the societies that consume the meat derived from them. For everyone else, they’re worthless and malign.

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April 14, 2015

Would You Call This Science or a Cult?

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From here, good job by Rachel Parent.
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The first question I had for the Health Canada officials was if they did any of their own safety studies on GMOs (Genetically Modified Organisms). Dr. Yan confirmed they did not, and went on to say, “We review the data that is given to us by the company. It’s up to them to demonstrate the safety.”

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The entire debate about whether GMO regulation has anything to do with science comes to an end right there. According to their own words, they accept the information given them by companies who are proven liars with regard to this exact kind of situation where billions in profits are at stake. So the regulatory process has zero grounding in science or rationality as such, but is based on the cult faith that a confirmed liar is now telling the truth.
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Perhaps the real question is whether, to the extent that these regulators aren’t straight-up corrupted liars, they’re expressing some kind of cult faith in corporate rule as such. And we can ask the same of people in general who want to believe the corporations directly, or at least believe them where the faith is mediated through the government regulators.
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The Health Canada cadre gives us another clue:
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I wanted to know if the studies given to Health Canada for safety assessments were peer-reviewed. No surprise, the answer was no. Dr. Yan advised that “Some of the data is actually proprietary data. They invest millions of dollars to develop their crop, so they’re not going to divulge it to anyone else to test the product.”

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As I’ve said, according to the self-image of Science itself there can be no such thing as secret science. By definition all data, to count as scientific, must be public so it can be assessed by the scientific fraternity. (According to democracy it must also be accessible and assessable by the people, and in addition various branches of the humanities would also claim a right to assess it.) Where practicing scientists are willing to recognize a secrecy regime we’re dealing with either a totally new paradigm of scientific practice which directly contradicts even the extant propaganda of science, or else with corruption and cowardice to such an extreme that we can only conclude that science as such has completely abdicated and been replaced by purely instrumental mercenary engineering.
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Either way, when a regulator can claim that not only are the people as well as scientists in general not to be allowed to see the evidence, but that he himself will perform his duties and give a judgement based on this secrecy, in camera like some hooded judge, and then expects the people to accept this judgement as authoritative and scientific, again we’re clearly dealing with a proclamation of cult faith and a demand that the people bow down and submit to such faith.
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(The TTIP and TPP intend to further enshrine such faith, by explicitly declaring, as a matter of public policy, that where it comes to corporate propaganda sheets derived from secret science or any other alleged secret evidence, “the tribunal shall assume to be true the claimant’s [i.e. the corporation’s] factual allegations in support of any claim in the notice of arbitration”. As we’ve seen, this is already in effect how government regulators act.)
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Indeed, as we see with the ongoing cults of the two corporate “political” parties here in the US, and things aren’t much different in Canada, there’s still a widespread appetite for such cultist “authority”. That’s why the Canadian regulators feel so confident about telling direct lies about the nature of the problem and the scope of their policy authority.
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After my meeting with the Health Minister in November, 2014, I was under the impression that labelling GMOs was up to the scientists at Health Canada, but unfortunately when I asked them about it, I was told that it’s not a health and safety issue; therefore it is not within their mandate.

So I asked, if it’s not up to Health Canada, and it’s not up to the Health Minister, then whose responsibility is it? Dr. Yan said “Non health and safety labelling is really under the jurisdiction of the CFIA (Canadian Food Inspection Agency).”….

This is the statement that [Health Minister] Ambrose made during an interview with Global News last year: “If we had the evidence that this was unhealthy, Health Canada would act and impose mandatory labels. That’s our job, to keep Canadians safe and healthy. But right now there is no scientific evidence that conclusively says that in any way genetically modified foods are unhealthy for Canadians.”

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In other words, in circular fashion they’ll refuse to seek and find the evidence on health and safety, then base the dogma “it’s not a health and safety issue” upon this refusal. “We found no evidence. Of course we never looked, which is the best way to find nothing!” We’re Through the Looking Glass indeed. And then, since there’s no evidence, which proves there’s no problem, there’s then no mandate to require labeling.
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Again, none of this can be explained or justified according to any recognizable scientific or rational standard. This is either a fundamentalist religion of faith in corporate rule, or else straight criminality. Or a combination.
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This is constantly being expressed in many propaganda and policy formulations which are self-evidently absurd to anyone outside the cult, such as:
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*A crop which produces its own insecticidal poison in every cell is “substantially equivalent” to one which does not.
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*A crop which through its intended use has its tissues suffused with herbicidal poison is substantially equivalent to one which hasn’t been suffused with poison.
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*None of these poisons are “food additives” which need to be studied, tested, and regulated as such.
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*A chemical which is lethally poisonous to one kind of organism is unlikely to be poisonous to other organisms. This is the bedrock proposition of the Poisoner ideology. To anyone who has even elementary reasoning capacities or simple common sense, this is self-evidently stupid and insane, and at the very least would need to be rigorously proven before policy based upon it could rationally be deployed. Yet as unproven dogma this is one of the bedrock principles of today’s scientific establishment, which can also be called corporate science. Most STEM credential-holders at least claim to believe this dogma and to agree that it has to be accepted on faith, to the point that they regard any demand for proof as some kind of lese majeste, an affront to their god-given legitimacy. (I’ll be writing more about how the proxxer mob scene is an applied example of this authoritarian cultism.)
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Once again we can see how we’re dealing with something straddling the line of a dogmatic authoritarian ideology and a veritably religious cult. In either case it has zero to do with science or reason, and indeed aggressively abrogates all the alleged principles of both.
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Unfortunately, the record of labeling initiatives in the US proves that so far there’s a significant number of people who ratify the secrecy regime, who evidently don’t want to know any information at all. This implicit ratification of “secret science” on the part of people who, unlike the revolving door regulators, can’t possibly benefit from it, and can only be hurt, seems to demand a religious/ideological analysis. Obviously many people still have faith in corporate rule, either directly in the corporations or indirectly through the government. One question is why anyone who’s not being paid to believe any of this would want to do so. Another question, the primary question of our time, is how to counteract this malign cult by demolishing its legitimacy and authority and destroying its faith.

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