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Monsanto: The world’s poster child for corporate manipulation and deceit

Posted in Basic GMO Information, Crop Failure, GM Health Effects by stopmonsanto on August 9, 2010

FWD: Naturalnews.com

Monsanto: The world’s poster child for corporate manipulation and deceit

by Jeffrey M. Smith

(NaturalNews) At a biotech industry conference in January 1999, a representative from Arthur Anderson, LLP explained how they had helped Monsanto design their strategic plan. First, his team asked Monsanto executives what their ideal future looked like in 15 to 20 years. The executives described a world with 100 percent of all commercial seeds genetically modified and patented. Anderson consultants then worked backwards from that goal, and developed the strategy and tactics to achieve it. They presented Monsanto with the steps and procedures needed to obtain a place of industry dominance in a world in which natural seeds were virtually extinct.

This was a bold new direction for Monsanto, which needed a big change to distance them from a controversial past. As a chemical company, they had polluted the landscape with some of the most poisonous substances ever produced, contaminated virtually every human and animal on earth, and got fined and convicted of deception and wrongdoing. According to a former Monsanto vice president, “We were despised by our customers.”

So they redefined themselves as a “life sciences” company, and then proceeded to pollute the landscape with toxic herbicide, contaminate the gene pool for all future generations with genetically modified plants, and get fined and convicted of deception and wrongdoing. Monsanto’s chief European spokesman admitted in 1999, “Everybody over here hates us.” Now the rest of the world is catching on.

“Saving the world,” and other lies

Monsanto’s public relations story about genetically modified organisms (GMOs) are largely based on five concepts.

1. GMOs are needed to feed the world.
2. GMOs have been thoroughly tested and proven safe.
3. GMOs increase yield.
4. GMOs reduce the use of agricultural chemicals.
5. GMOs can be contained, and therefore coexist with non-GM crops.

All five are pure myths — blatant falsehoods about the nature and benefit of this infant technology. The experience of former Monsanto employee Kirk Azevedo helps expose the first two lies, and provides some insight into the nature of the people working at the company.

In 1996, Monsanto recruited young Kirk Azevedo to sell their genetically engineered cotton. Azevedo accepted their offer not because of the pay increase, but due to the writings of Monsanto CEO Robert Shapiro. Shapiro had painted a picture of feeding the world and cleaning up the environment with his company’s new technology. When he visited Monsanto’s St. Louis headquarters for new employee training, Azevedo shared his enthusiasm for Shapiro’s vision during a meeting. When the session ended, a company vice president pulled him aside and set him straight. “Wait a second,” he told Azevedo. “What Robert Shapiro says is one thing. But what we do is something else. We are here to make money. He is the front man who tells a story. We don’t even understand what he is saying.” Azevedo realized he was working for “just another profit-oriented company,” and all the glowing words about helping the planet were just a front.

A few months later he got another shock. A company scientist told him that Roundup Ready cotton plants contained new, unintended proteins that had resulted from the gene insertion process. No safety studies had been conducted on the proteins, none were planned, and the cotton plants, which were part of field trials near his home, were being fed to cattle. Azevedo “was afraid at that time that some of these proteins may be toxic.”

He asked the PhD in charge of the test plot to destroy the cotton rather than feed it to cattle, arguing that until the protein had been evaluated, the cows’ milk or meat could be harmful. The scientist refused. Azevedo approached everyone on his team at Monsanto to raise concerns about the unknown protein, but no one was interested. “I was somewhat ostracized,” he said. “Once I started questioning things, people wanted to keep their distance from me. . . . Anything that interfered with advancing the commercialization of this technology was going to be pushed aside.” Azevedo decided to leave Monsanto. He said, “I’m not going to be part of this disaster.”

Monsanto’s toxic past

Azevedo got a small taste of Monsanto’s character. A verdict in a lawsuit a few years later made it more explicit. On February 22, 2002, Monsanto was found guilty for poisoning the town of Anniston, Alabama with their PCB factory and covering it up for decades. They were convicted of negligence, wantonness, suppression of the truth, nuisance, trespass, and outrage. According to Alabama law, to be guilty of outrage typically requires conduct “so outrageous in character and extreme in degree as to go beyond all possible bounds of decency so as to be regarded as atrocious and utterly intolerable in civilized society.”(1)

The $700 million fine imposed on Monsanto was on behalf of the Anniston residents, whose blood levels of Monsanto’s toxic PCBs were hundreds or thousands of times the average. This disease-producing chemical, used as coolants and lubricants for over 50 years, are now virtually omnipresent in the blood and tissues of humans and wildlife around the globe. Ken Cook of the Environmental Working Group says that based on Monsanto documents made public during a trial, the company “knew the truth from the very beginning. They lied about it. They hid the truth from their neighbors.” One Monsanto memo explains their justification: “We can’t afford to lose one dollar of business.” Welcome to the world of Monsanto.

Infiltrating the minds and offices of the government

To get their genetically modified products approved, Monsanto has coerced, infiltrated, and paid off government officials around the globe. In Indonesia, Monsanto gave bribes and questionable payments to at least 140 officials, attempting to get their genetically modified (GM) cotton accepted.(2) In 1998, six Canadian government scientists testified before the Senate that they were being pressured by superiors to approve rbGH, that documents were stolen from a locked file cabinet in a government office, and that Monsanto offered them a bribe of $1-2 million to pass the drug without further tests. In India, one official tampered with the report on Bt cotton to increase the yield figures to favor Monsanto.(3) And Monsanto seems to have planted their own people in key government positions in India, Brazil, Europe, and worldwide.

Monsanto’s GM seeds were also illegally smuggled into countries like Brazil and Paraguay, before GMOs were approved. Roberto Franco, Paraguay’s Deputy Agriculture Ministry, tactfully admits, “It is possible that [Monsanto], let’s say, promoted its varieties and its seeds” before they were approved. “We had to authorize GMO seeds because they had already entered our country in an, let’s say, unorthodox way.”

In the US, Monsanto’s people regularly infiltrate upper echelons of government, and the company offers prominent positions to officials when they leave public service. This revolving door has included key people in the White House, regulatory agencies, even the Supreme Court. Monsanto also had George Bush Senior on their side, as evidenced by footage of Vice President Bush at Monsanto’s facility offering help to get their products through government bureaucracy. He says, “Call me. We’re in the ‘de-reg’ business. Maybe we can help.”

Monsanto’s influence continued into the Clinton administration. Dan Glickman, then Secretary of Agriculture, says, “there was a general feeling in agro-business and inside our government in the US that if you weren’t marching lock-step forward in favor of rapid approvals of biotech products, rapid approvals of GMO crops, then somehow, you were anti-science and anti-progress.” Glickman summarized the mindset in the government as follows:

“What I saw generically on the pro-biotech side was the attitude that the technology was good, and that it was almost immoral to say that it wasn’t good, because it was going to solve the problems of the human race and feed the hungry and clothe the naked. . . . And there was a lot of money that had been invested in this, and if you’re against it, you’re Luddites, you’re stupid. That, frankly, was the side our government was on. Without thinking, we had basically taken this issue as a trade issue and they, whoever ‘they’ were, wanted to keep our product out of their market. And they were foolish, or stupid, and didn’t have an effective regulatory system. There was rhetoric like that even here in this department. You felt like you were almost an alien, disloyal, by trying to present an open-minded view on some of the issues being raised. So I pretty much spouted the rhetoric that everybody else around here spouted; it was written into my speeches.”(4)

He admits, “when I opened my mouth in the Clinton Administration [about the lax regulations on GMOs], I got slapped around a little bit.”

Read full article here.

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Alex Jones: Exposes GMO’s

Posted in Basic GMO Information, GM Health Effects by stopmonsanto on August 7, 2010

In a recent infowars.com article, Alex Jones posted two new videos exposing GMO’s and the truth about the food supply:

“The grocery store, along with your kitchen sink, are two of the most dangerous places in the world.

In a special video, Alex Jones addresses one of the darkest modes of power the globalists have used to control the population– food. The adulteration of the planet’s staple crops, genetically-altered species and intentionally-altered water, food and air all amount to a Eugenics operation to weaken the masses and achieve full spectrum domination.”

These videos are filled with great information and are helping to inform the masses about GMO’s in our food. Keep passing them on in the fight against Monsanto!

How GMOs are Created

Posted in Basic GMO Information, GM Health Effects by stopmonsanto on July 18, 2010

The first step to understanding what a genetically modified organism is, is to learn how they are created. To make a genetically modified plant that has a built in insecticide to kill insects, for example, a protein from a gene that kills insects is inserted with signals that enable the protein to be made by the cell, which is called a promoter, and to stop the production of the protein called the terminator. The end product which includes the promoter, gene, and terminator, is known as a unit construct. The outcome of several unit constructs stacked together is a plasmid, which is part of the DNA in bacteria that multiplies so that the construct is copied millions of times. These copies are launched into the cells or embryos of organisms so the construct can be inserted into the genome of a cell. To get the constructs into the cells, geneticists either use mechanical means or gene splicing into a vector. Mechanical methods include using a glass pipette to inject fine gold and tungsten particles with the genes coated on them to fire it into the cell membrane, which most of the time causes a lot of damage to the cells. Vectors are created by viruses or bacteria that can get into cells; the construct is spliced into the vector which is then able to get it into the cell.

Sources:
http://www.i-sis.org.uk/FAQ.php

Monsanto’s Patent Policies Restricted in Europe

Posted in Basic GMO Information, Crop Failure by stopmonsanto on July 17, 2010

Last week, Europe’s highest court decided that patents on DNA only apply to live plants.

Panna.org explains:
“The ruling comes as a result of a suit by Monsanto against Dutch companies who were importing soy meal from Argentina – where Monsanto doesn’t hold a patent and farmers can grow RoundupReady soybeans (designed to withstand heavy applications of Monsanto’s flagship herbicide, Roundup) without paying any of the licensing agreements or fees imposed on American and European farmers. After Monsanto found traces of its RoundupReady DNA in soy meal imported from Argentina to the Netherlands, the company filed suit in a Dutch court, demanding seizure of the imported soy meal. The Dutch court asked for a ruling, but Monsanto decided to settle out of court for an undisclosed amount after a preliminary opinion indicated that they would probably lose the suit. The European Court of Justice decided to proceed with its ruling in order to clarify the European Union’s biotechnology directive, which was passed in 1998.”

This recent court decision is wonderful news for it places restrictions on Monsanto’s patents and control of the food supply. However these restrictions are narrow and this ruling is just one small step in the right direction.

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Labels on GM Foods Gaining Lawmakers Support

Posted in Basic GMO Information by stopmonsanto on July 15, 2010

Dennis Kucinich is a well respected advocate for GM labeling and is helping stop the madness Monsanto has created for this world. He recently introduced three new bills to the House realting to GM food labeling. More specifically, “labeling of food containing genetically engineered material, the cultivation and handling of genetically engineered crops, and the establishment of a set of farmer rights regarding genetically engineered animals, plants, and seeds.” (GMO Journal)
Kucinich stated:

To ensure we can maximize benefits and minimize hazards, Congress must provide a comprehensive regulatory framework for all Genetically Engineered products. Structured as a common-sense precaution to ensure GE foods do no harm, these bills will ensure that consumers are protected, food safety measures are strengthened, farmers’ rights are better protected and biotech companies are responsible for their products.

This is Kucinich’s fifth attempt to label GMOs. In both 2003 and 2008 his Genetically Engineered Food Right to Know Act bills only made it to House sub-committees. His newest bill holds more hope because it is backed with the support of the recent Suprme Court decision on GMOs.

Sources:
http://blogs.alternet.org/gmojournal/2010/07/14/lawmakers-propose-labeling-in-response-to-supreme-courts-monsanto-decision/

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Protect our Choice for Drug-Free Milk—Without Bovine Growth Hormone (rbGH/rbST)

Posted in GM Health Effects by stopmonsanto on April 14, 2009

Unlike Raw, Organic Milk, conventional store shelves are lined with numerous brands of hormone, chemical, DDT, fungicide, defoliant and radioactive fallout, cow’s milk produced by abused animals injected with rBGH. HB2121 is a bill that will make it very complicated for national dairy brands to properly label their products as rBGH free. Please email Governor Sebelius before the deadline to veto HB2121, which is April 16th.


Quick rBGH Facts (Genetically-engineered bovine growth hormone)

Despite the lies by Monsanto and the FDA rBGH is unsafe for humans and cows alike.

• rBGH makes cows sick. Monsanto has been forced to admit to about 20 veterinary health risks on its Posilac label including mastitis and udder inflammation.
• rBGH milk is contaminated by pus from mastitis induced by rBGH, and antibiotics used to treat the mastitis.
• rBGH milk is contaminated by the GE hormone which can be absorbed through the gut and induce immunological effects.
• rBGH milk is chemically and nutritionally very different from natural milk.
• rBGH milk is supercharged with high levels of a natural growth factor (IGF-1), excess levels of which have been incriminated as major causes of breast, colon, and prostate cancers.
• rBGH factory farms pose a major threat to the viability of small dairy farms. Thus, rBGH enriches Monsanto while posing risks but no benefits to the entire U.S. population.


Monsanto Threatens Fox:

Video that shows how Monsanto kept Fox News from airing a report on cancer-causing health effects from rBGH.


Milk The Deadly Poison:

Milk The Deadly Poison

Quick video that shows how milk contains powerful growth hormones, viruses, a host of deadly chemical and biological bacterial agents, bovine proteins that cause allergies, insecticides, antibiotics, all this can trigger the growth of cancer and contributes to today’s problem of obese children.

Recommended Books:
Milk- The Deadly Poison

Got (Genetically Engineered) Milk? The Monsanto rBGH/BST Milk Wars Handbook

Sources:
http://www.shirleys-wellness-cafe.com/bgh.htm

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/jeffrey-smith/monsanto-forced-fox-tv-to_b_186428.html

Massive GM Corn Failure in South Africagm cr

Posted in Crop Failure by stopmonsanto on April 10, 2009

Workers in South Africa who were scammed into false promises by Monsanto were recently brought the truth about GM corn, but not without the cost of losing their jobs. Corn is the main staple in South Africa and this failure is destroying the lives of many. The three maize varieties which failed to produce seeds were designed with a built-in resistance to weed-killers, and manipulated to increase yields per hectare. 82,000 hectares of genetically-manipulated corn (maize) failed to produce hardly any seeds. As expected Monsanto underestimates the up to 80% crop failure and blames it on, “underfertilisation processes in the laboratory”.

Environmental activist and Director of the Africa-centre for biosecurity in Johannesburg, Marian Mayet, is calling for not only an immediate government investigation on the GM, maize crops, but also a ban on all GM-foods. “Monsanto says they just made a mistake in the laboratory; however we say that biotechnology is a failure. You cannot make a ‘mistake’ with three different varieties of corn”, says Mayet.

Just like the United States, South Africa does not require labels on GM food. Efforts to label the food do subsist, including the supermarket chain Woolworths, who banned all sales of GM food since 2000.

Health Affects of GM corn

• Infertility
• Abnormal Gene Expression
• Allergic Reactions
• Rats fed Monsanto’s Mon 863 corn, engineered to produce Bt-toxin, had liver lesions and other indications of toxicity.
• Chickens fed the herbicide tolerant “Liberty Link” corn died at twice the rate of those fed natural corn.
• About two dozen farmers reported that thousands of their pigs had reproductive problems when fed certain varieties of Bt corn

GM corn is undeniably dangerous to human health and the environment.



Sources


http://www.foodfirst.org/en/node/2336

http://www.digitaljournal.com/article/270101

http://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php?title=Monsanto_and_GM_Foods:_Health_Risks