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Author Topic: Let Them Eat Cake
Just_Jess_B

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Icon 1 posted March 17, 2007 10:22      Profile for Just_Jess_B   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
It is very frustrating that the whole of our food supply is tainted. Just a couple days ago, WinterSolstice showed me the Monsanto cover-up paperwork about the liver and kidney damage from the corn.

That's attempted genocide for money. We don't have that many kidneys in the donation registry. Putting people at risk like that for money needs to be tried as assassination for hire and/or genocide.

Please, let the U.N. demand these companies be held accountable on the world stage. The U.S. never protects its people -- between shipping jobs outside the U.S. then demanding who's left foot the bill for the forced unemployment -- it's getting depressing.

Theoretically? The U.S. is the best of it. Our long waits on medical are nothing compared to other countries. Our poorest people can eat (when I was on AFDC, the homeless people who came into the office got emergency food stamps same-day). There are failsafes so that a person who wishes to have their basic needs met can have them met (pride and severe mental issues aside). But the U.S. is awful because they're allowing murder from every corporation in the world.

It hurts that we have no rights to reject being guinea pigs because the FDA feels it can protect us from marajuana (no, I don't use, but at least cannibis tends to be grown naturally) yet believes genetically modified fish-corn filled with insecticides from soil that's been depleted to dust deserves the OK! stamp.

What ticks me off most is that the people who pretend that we need to return to a simpler time are liars as well. They're ALL liars! And the people are stupid to elect them, thinking like a victim of physical abuse that "This time, s/he means it. This time s/he'll stop hurting me."

We're on our way to the morgue because we refuse to change our government. I suppose, then, instead of murders, it's a mass cultural suicide. That said, I'm not too worried about the earth. It really seems like it is time for humanity to be bucked off.

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Ashitaka

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Icon 1 posted March 17, 2007 10:45      Profile for Ashitaka     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
There is currently conflicting evedence that this corn causes kidney and liver damage. Here are the links slashdot had on this story. /.

Summary?
Monsanto says "cases of liver and kedney damage not statistically significant."
greenpeace says "liver and kidney damage cases are statistically significant." Rats not fat.

I believe both sides here would have no problem with manipulating data for thier own interests.

Plus having one thing consist of 30% of your diet for months, probably not healthy for rats. This is why your buble gum has the warning that saccarin causes cancer in rats. DO you have any idea how mach saccarin has to be fed to a rat to cause cancer?

I am not saying shut up and eat your damn corn.


I am saying more research needs to be done because there are now conflicting results.


It is also worthy to note tht nothing toxic can be found in this corn.

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Snaggy

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Icon 12 posted March 17, 2007 10:54      Profile for Snaggy   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
shut up and eat your damn soylent green! [Big Grin] [Big Grin]

humans are fscked up.

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WinterSolstice

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Icon 1 posted March 17, 2007 11:34      Profile for WinterSolstice     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Well, I'm saying - Why do we need corn that's bio-engineered to be resistant to pesticides we shouldn't need to use in the first place?

I have the same problem with cloning animals. Why spend tons of money to clone animals when they require force to prevent them from reproducing all by themselves?

Is it because we need to produce more corn? Nope - we typically have an excess of corn in the US (look up the subsidies). Is it because we can't produce enough cattle? Nope. I used to live in an Ag town, and nobody ever had issues with it. Cattle sell extremely cheap, and you can easily buy more than your land can support.

So WTF? Why are they doing it in the first place?

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Ashitaka

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Icon 1 posted March 17, 2007 12:20      Profile for Ashitaka     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
These are companies, they are doing this to make profit. You don't like it you are a pinko.

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"If they're not gonna make a distinction between Muslims and violent extremists, then why should I take the time to distinguish between decent, fearful white people and racists?"

-Assif Mandvi

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Xanthine

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Icon 1 posted March 17, 2007 15:07      Profile for Xanthine     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
You make that sound like it's a bad thing. [Razz]

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- The Decemberists

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ScholasticSpastic
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Icon 1 posted March 17, 2007 18:20      Profile for ScholasticSpastic     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Genetically modified foods could be the key to providing stable food supplies and viable economies to third-world countries. There are places in Africa and Asia where children starve because there's not enough access to water or land to grow crops. Let's feed those kids before we waste time on less tangible concerns.

To torture a parable, teach a man to fish and there'd better be fish in the lake or he's still screwed. Genmod crops are a way to provide independence for many nations that currently rely on foreign aid.

I don't understand why we're wasting time on genmod crops for use in the US. We're not starving. But we shouldn't underestimate the potential good that can be done in other countries. I, myself, am a big fan of forcing communities to limit their growth to what the surrounding terrain will feed, but that would mean the dispersal of most of the major cities on Earth and people just don't seem to want to do that sort of thing. Idiots.

Oh, well. Our choice is clear: We can keep on being short-sighted sex-monkeys (and be forced to find new food sources), or we can exercise some control and make do with what we've got. Just looking at the global trends, it appears that the sex-monkeys have the deciding votes.

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"As in repeating a well-known song, so in instincts, one action follows another by a sort of rhythm; if a person be interrupted in a song, or in repeating anything by rote, he is generally forced to go back to recover the habitual train of thought..." (Darwin, The Origin of Species)

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Richard Wolf VI
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Icon 2 posted March 17, 2007 19:10      Profile for Richard Wolf VI   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
I feel I have to criticize your comment ScholasticSpastic.

Bioengineering sounds wonderful until you found a "small" flaw: patents.

Corporations start patenting these products, and actually force underdeveloped country to pay unfair royalties in order to use their products, so they're actually in a Win/Lose scenario, because they have to make loans in order to pay those royalties, producing more debt, debt raises taxes and high taxes decrease acquisition power and life style in general, provoking poverty.

It's a vicious cycle.

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ScholasticSpastic
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Icon 1 posted March 17, 2007 19:32      Profile for ScholasticSpastic     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
iWanToUseaMac wrote:
Bioengineering sounds wonderful until you found a "small" flaw: patents.

I agree, it takes all the air out my my tires when we come up with issues like patents. But I must point out that patent law and big business have nothing to do with bioengineering specifically. That's not a science or a health issue, it's a political and financial issue. I agree that it sucks. I agree that it may completely undermine all of the good that might otherwise have been done by bioengineered crops.

So why do we keep voting for monkeys that allow us to so thoroughly screw our fellow human beings (in the name, by the way, of being a "Christian Nation")? We're no Christian Nation. Jesus didn't magically conjure loaves of bread and then set up a concession stand in any of the books I've read. He didn't charge for the wine, either, from what I remember. These fools who rape other cultures and claim to be Christians really should be excommunicated. Of course, I'll not let them join the Atheist club with me, either- we can't afford to be associated with scum like that!

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"As in repeating a well-known song, so in instincts, one action follows another by a sort of rhythm; if a person be interrupted in a song, or in repeating anything by rote, he is generally forced to go back to recover the habitual train of thought..." (Darwin, The Origin of Species)

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WinterSolstice

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Icon 1 posted March 17, 2007 19:54      Profile for WinterSolstice     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Patents are really the only reason to bio-engineer crops.

Does Africa need Roundup-Ready Wheat? No.

That's why several countries (lead by Africa) walked out when offered Monsanto crops. It's poison.

The EU ruled against GMO crops. The WTO has ruled against them (What the hell? How does a trade organization trump? What is this, Star Wars?)

GMO crops are a solution looking for a problem.

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An operating system should be like a light switch... simple, effective, easy to use, and designed for everyone.

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ScholasticSpastic
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Icon 1 posted March 17, 2007 20:12      Profile for ScholasticSpastic     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
I disagree. It is possible to engineer drought-resistant crops for growth in arid regions as well as crops that are naturally resistant to diseases that might be encountered. Crops like that can help conserve water and money that would otherwise be spent on irrigation and pesticides. The patents are an issue, but there are lots of areas where human suffering could be reversed by improving crop yields. It was short-sighted for African nations to cave in to the bullshit propoganda and cut off their citizens from potential nourishment. Monsanto pisses me off, but not as much as ignorance leading to late-night images of starving children on television.

Edited for spling

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"As in repeating a well-known song, so in instincts, one action follows another by a sort of rhythm; if a person be interrupted in a song, or in repeating anything by rote, he is generally forced to go back to recover the habitual train of thought..." (Darwin, The Origin of Species)

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GrumpySteen

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Icon 1 posted March 17, 2007 20:23      Profile for GrumpySteen     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
GMO crops are not, in and of themselves, a bad thing. As ScholasticSpastic pointed out, crops can be genetically manipulated to be drought resistant. That alone would help a number of third world countries and would have cause no significant problem.

The problem is that a crop that's been genetically engineered to produce it's own pesticide produces food which is filled with pesticide. Because it come from inside the plant itself, the pesticide cannot be washed off or removed by cooking. I think we can all agree that eating pesticide is bad for you.

Genetic Modification is only a tool. How we use that tool determines whether it is harmful or beneficial.

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ScholasticSpastic
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Icon 1 posted March 17, 2007 20:34      Profile for ScholasticSpastic     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Disease resistance isn't solely a role for pesticides. It is possible to alter the protein structure of a plant such that it is more resistent to insects or viruses without actually increasing the toxicity of the plant. Lots of familiar plants do that sort of thing all the time. All it needs to do is become less nummy for the wee buggers than other local plants and it will tend to be left alone. By reducing the accessability of a plant for local insects and pathogens it is possible to protect a crop without using any pesticides at all- applied or phytogenerated. That should be the goal for plant engineers. It'll be left unfulfilled, however, if we don't pull our heads out and allow genetic research to continue.

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"As in repeating a well-known song, so in instincts, one action follows another by a sort of rhythm; if a person be interrupted in a song, or in repeating anything by rote, he is generally forced to go back to recover the habitual train of thought..." (Darwin, The Origin of Species)

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GrumpySteen

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Icon 1 posted March 17, 2007 20:53      Profile for GrumpySteen     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Well, that would explain why I used the phrase "genetically engineered to produce it's own pesticide" rather than "genetically engineered to be resistant to pests"... [Smile]

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ScholasticSpastic
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Icon 1 posted March 17, 2007 21:49      Profile for ScholasticSpastic     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
I'm not saying you're wrong or that plants + pesticides = yummy goodness. I'm just being pedantic. Sorry. I've spent a lot of time on my back and I'm still waiting for the wetware CPU to warm up again. The world is kind of pleasant when everything's fuzzy, but I like thinking clearly even more.

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"As in repeating a well-known song, so in instincts, one action follows another by a sort of rhythm; if a person be interrupted in a song, or in repeating anything by rote, he is generally forced to go back to recover the habitual train of thought..." (Darwin, The Origin of Species)

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GrumpySteen

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Icon 1 posted March 17, 2007 22:35      Profile for GrumpySteen     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Eat some corn... you'll feel better in no time [Big Grin]

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ASM65816
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Icon 1 posted March 18, 2007 10:59      Profile for ASM65816   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
"Less yummy" is more correct than "produce it's own pesticide." Bugs don't take a bite and drop dead; they look for something better to eat.

Real pesticides kill. For example, black walnut trees kill nearby plants by producing juglone, which affects plants in the Nightshade family most. For people allergic to shellfish, shrimp have a natural "pesticide."

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Once a proud programmer of Apple II's, he now spends his days and nights in cheap dives fraternizing with exotic dancers....

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GrumpySteen

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Icon 1 posted March 18, 2007 11:31      Profile for GrumpySteen     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
*sigh*

Okay, let's be specific. The corn in question is MON 863 or BT corn.

From this abstract
Maize line MON 863 was produced using recombinant-DNA techniques to express the cry3Bb1 gene encoding a Coleopteran-specific insecticidal protein from Bacillus thuringiensis (subsp. kumamotoensis) in order to control infestation with corn root worm. This gene was introduced into the publicly available inbred line, A634, by particle acceleration (biolistic) transformation.

The cry3Bb1 gene encodes the insect control protein Cry3Bb1, a delta-endotoxin. Cry proteins, of which Cry3Bb1 is only one, act by selectively binding to specific sites localized on the lining of the midgut of susceptible insect species. Following binding, pores are formed that disrupt midgut ion flow, causing gut paralysis and eventual death due to bacterial sepsis.


Let me repeat the critical phrase there...paralysis and eventual death due to bacterial sepsis

Lethal != Less Yummy

Bugs eat it and they do, in fact, die... although not instantly. Slowly. Painfully (assuming you accept that an insect can feel pain).

Clear now?

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GrumpySteen

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Icon 1 posted March 18, 2007 11:32      Profile for GrumpySteen     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Double post... oops.

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The Famous Druid

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Icon 1 posted March 18, 2007 12:47      Profile for The Famous Druid     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Ashitaka:
Plus having one thing consist of 30% of your diet for months, probably not healthy for rats.

What about feed-lot cattle?

Or third-world farmers?

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Ashitaka

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Icon 1 posted March 18, 2007 12:58      Profile for Ashitaka     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by The Famous Druid:
quote:
Originally posted by Ashitaka:
Plus having one thing consist of 30% of your diet for months, probably not healthy for rats.

What about feed-lot cattle?

Or third-world farmers?

I would argue that feed lot cattle and third world farmers are not exactly a paradigm of health.


But you do have a point. My point was that these lab rats were exposed to more corn than most people ever would be in order to develop the symptoms they had.

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-Assif Mandvi

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WinterSolstice

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Icon 1 posted March 18, 2007 15:37      Profile for WinterSolstice     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Ok, so is it surprising that something specifically designed to kill insects in such a nasty way has a possibility of damaging humans?

Given, it wasn't intended to harm humans. That's not what I'm implying.

I simply stating 2 facts:
1) GMO are being used without proper and complete safety due to greed. Proper safety would mean that it is 100% compatible with corn, not 99.9% (which assuming it was eaten by 300 million people would still cause problems in thousands)

2) GMO crops that will not reproduce properly are a from of DRM, but applied to plants (PRM?) with only greed as a motivation.

Seriously - I would trust Monsanto's products more if they were being developed for free use (or minor offset costs, such as normal seed would have). I don't trust corporations, and I never will. Human Greed is a powerful force, and it is behind too many tragedies. It's second only to incompetence when it comes to destructive powers.

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Serenak

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Icon 1 posted March 18, 2007 16:04      Profile for Serenak     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Like so many advances GM has great potential for good...

and subverted to greed and corporate profit a great deal of potential to do harm - unintentionally or otherwise...

Drought and pest resistant crops could do wonders...

Here in the UK the average height of standing wheat has probably halved since I was a boy - (GM but not the sort of GM people mean by GM, selective crossfertilizing that has been going on since humans started farming...)

Reason? Shorter wheat is less prone to wind and rain "beat down" and also less of the plant's output is "wasted" on producing stalk farmers don't have any use for... Result is a higher output per hectare and a lesser need for "artificial" fertilizer...

The real truth is we have been doing genetic modificatons on all of our crops and domestic animals since the zero point of farming. Not trans genic mods, just "improvements"

Of course modern "lab" GM has the option of creating species that are "mules" meaning the farmer /has/ to buy new seed from the supplier every year as the modified crop cannot naturally reseed itself (though some crossbred seeds are like that too) - probably not much of a problem in western agribusiness, but a possible serious "lock in" for some African/other developing world peasant agronomies....

There are gains and pitfalls in every advance...

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Xanthine

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Icon 1 posted March 18, 2007 18:19      Profile for Xanthine     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
The issue the Third World has with GMOs is not so much a safety one as an economic one. Serenak described it already. When your drinking water isn't safe, the hypothetical risks of GMOs gets a low priority. Monsanto is incredibly fscking greedy - not only do they want farmers to hand back their seeds and buy new every year, but they want neighboring farmers to pay royalties due to the possibility of cross-pollination. A stable food supply that doesn't rely on pesticide is fine, but must it happen by impoverishing those that are already impoverished?

/me wonders what 100% compatible with corn means

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And it's one, two, three / On the wrong side of the lee / What were you meant for? / What were you meant for?
- The Decemberists

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The Famous Druid

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Icon 1 posted March 18, 2007 19:35      Profile for The Famous Druid     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Xanthine:
not only do they want farmers to hand back their seeds and buy new every year, but they want neighboring farmers to pay royalties due to the possibility of cross-pollination.

That's interesting, over here the pro-GM lobby spend most of their time denying that cross-pollination could ever happen.

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If you watch 'The History Of NASA' backwards, it's about a space agency that has no manned spaceflight capability, then does low-orbit flights, then lands on the Moon.

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