You Think Big Money Only Corrupts Politics?
So, when you get right down to it, people only really need food, water, and shelter—and in benign climates, people may not need shelter. So, food
and water are essential, and even water can be free if you don’t mind getting it from the creek, river, or spring.
So, people can subsist without almost anything, but not without food.
So let’s think about our food supply system here in America. We are an advanced society, right? So is our food supply part of that advancement?
Consider that the bulk of our food supply is controlled by a handful of really big, internationally powerful, and fabulously wealthy corporations.
For one good example, Monsanto controls the seed supply, manipulating the genetic structure of its seeds so they can be patented, developing seeds that withstand toxic agricultural chemicals—and by the way, developing and selling those same toxic chemicals. Do scientists publish studies showing that toxic agricultural chemicals kill bee colonies? Well, then, Monsanto buys the world’s leading firm specializing in bee science. Will the science produced in the future from that company find that Monsanto’s agricultural chemicals harm honeybees? Not much chance of that. Monsanto is, right now, aggressively trying to wrest control of the world’s food supply and is perilously close to doing it.
“But I eat organic,” you may say. “I avoid those GMO crops, and the chemical toxins, and the rest.”
It’s time to step back and look at the big picture. The safety of America’s food supply—organic and conventional—is in the hands of Michael Taylor, now a deputy commissioner in the Food and Drug Administration. His previous position? Vice President for Public Policy at Monsanto, appointed to the FDA by the Obama administration. Is this an isolated case? Hardly. Check out this chart, drawn up by the Organic Consumers Association. All these people have worked for Monsanto. Their post-Monsaanto government jobs are given:
NAME GOVERNMENT JOB
Toby Moffett US Congessman
Dennis DeConcini US Senator
Margaret Miller Dep. Dir. FDA
Marcia Hale White House Sr. Staff
Mickey Kantor Sec. of Commerce
Virginia Weldon WH-Appt to CSA
Josh King White House Communications
David Beler Gore’s Polcy Advisor
Carol Tucker-Foreman WH-Appointed Consumer Adv
Linda Fisher Deputy Admin, EPA
Lidia Watrud USDA, EPA
Michael Taylor Dep. Commiss. FDA
Hilary Clinton Secretary of State
Roger Beachy Director USDA
Islam Siddiqui Ag Negotiator
“But,” you may say, “the safety of organic food is guaranteed by law through the U.S. Department of Agriculture.” It’s supposed to be. Organic standards are supposed to be set by the National Organic Standards Board, comprised of farmers, environmentalists, and scientists in the organic community. Maybe that was the case a decade or two ago, but it’s not the case now.
The Cornucopia Institute (www.cornucopia.org) has just released the results of its investigation into how Big Ag has infiltrated and co-opted the organic regulatory process. It calls its investigation, “The Organic Watergate.” Here’s a quick, one-paragraph summary:
“An in-depth investigation by The Cornucopia Institute has found a number of gimmicky, unproven and even dangerous synthetic additives in organic food. An unholy alliance between corporate agribusiness and the USDA has corrupted the regulatory system that Congress created to protect organic consumers and ethical farmers and business people.”
I encourage you to visit the Institute’s website and read The Organic Watergate for yourself. It’s beyond shocking. It’s infuriating. Big money and Big Ag insidiously muscle out the people who care about real food and real food safety.
When Congress set up the National Organic Standards Board in 1990, the law stated that “NOSB shall be composed of 15 members, of which –
(1) four shall be individuals who own or operate an organic farming operation;
(2) two shall be individuals who own or operate an organic handling operation;
(3) one shall be an individual who owns or operates a retail establishment with significant trade in organic products;
(4) three shall be individuals with expertise in areas of environmental protection and resource conservation;
(5) three shall be individuals who represent public interest or consumer interest groups;
(6) one shall be an individual with expertise in the fields of toxicology, ecology or biochemistry, and;
(7) one shall be an individual who is a certifying agent as identified under sec. 2116.”
And what about today? The following agribusinesses have had representatives appointed to the Board:
- Earthbound Farm (2 representatives have served, a handler and a consumer representative)
- General Mills (4 representatives have served, three handlers and a scientist)
- Dean Foods (farmer slot)
- Campbell Soup Company (handler slot)
- Grimmway Enterprises, Inc. (farmer slot)
- PurePak, Inc. (environmentalist slot)
- Campbell Soup Company (handler slot)
- Smucker’s (handler slot)
- CROPP/Organic Valley (3 representatives, all appointed to a farmer slot)
- Purina Ralcorp (handler slot)
- Driscoll’s (farmer slot)
- Phillips Mushrooms (environmentalist slot)
The result is that a slew of non-organic products are now in the organic food supply.
But let’s step back and take an even wider look at our food supply in this country. Take a walk through the center aisles of your supermarket—the aisles for snacks and cereals and processed foods, and don’t miss the frozen food aisles either. Someone is selling Americans on highly processed and over-priced foods dangerously contaminated with all kinds of toxic chemicals.
Now look around at Americans. See any obese people? You bet you do. This is all planned. Not the rampant obesity, that’s just an effect. What’s planned is the enormous amount of money to be made selling junk food to the public. They make it taste good with sugar and salt and fat. They color it and texturize it so people will love it and come back for more more more. They fill it with preservatives so even microbes can’t live in the stuff. Meanwhile, a recent study showed that the umbilical cord blood of newborn infants contains something like 270-plus manmade chemicals. And they’re just the chemicals that crossed the placental barrier. Now that the developing child is born, they’ve got milk substitutes ready to serve.
In other words, it’s all a dreadful scam to control the world’s food supply in order to amass more and more money. Monsanto, Cargill, DuPont, Archer-Daniels-Midland, Bayer, Kraft Foods, Tyson Foods, PepsiCo, Nestle, Anheuser-Busch, General Mills, Dean Foods, Smithfield Foods, ConAgra Foods, and Cadbury Schweppes, among many other international corporations make obscene amounts of money by promoting factory farms with all the depredations they produce, by mucking around with the genetics of our food crops, by manufacturing chemicals to use on crops and in food processing, by maximizing profits by feeding this toxic sludge (remember pink slime?) to the public, and especially to school children (“More Froot Loops mom!”), without regard to the health of our people, and with their eyes locked on their bottom lines.
And so they make money. Well over half a trillion dollars in 2007. And a lot of that is pure profit. That kind of money doesn’t just talk, it shrieks at you, right in your face, with fangs bared, until you die. Figuratively, of course. Haven’t you heard? Americans have the best, cheapest, and safest food in the world.