Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Communists Disguised as “Environmentalists” and “Mommy Bloggers” Wage Lysenkoist War on American Farmers and Ranchers

Re-posted by Nicholas Stix

If National Review weren’t so cowardly, it would have made it clear what is going on here, as I did with my headline.

December 11, 2013 4:00 A.M.
Biotech’s Mommy Issue
Women are targeted by anti-GMO activists but deserve to know the truth.

By Julie Gunlock

Comments (224)

Advertisers and marketing experts know that in the typical household, the woman is the primary shopper. Whether they are selling cars or light bulbs or groceries, they have to appeal to women, their consumer base.

The same goes for organizations selling fear and worry: If they want to attract converts to their cause, they have to convince women to embrace their views and join them in agitating for action. And so it goes for activists opposed to the use of genetically modified organisms (GMOs), who bombard women with misinformation about food safety.

Rather than falling for these tactics, women should take a reasoned look at the facts behind biotechnology and the cost and consequences of the policies activists advance. They’ll find that the anti-GMO hype is the real threat to their families’ well-being.

Radical environmental groups initially led the charge against GMOs, but today, some of the most vocal and influential anti-GMO activists are found on mommy blogs and parenting, cooking, and so-called health-and-wellness websites — all of which are popular with moms.

These seemingly innocuous sources regularly pin a variety of ailments on GMOs: from food allergies and stomach ailments to obesity, infertility, autism, and even cancer. Using Jenny McCarthy’s playbook for creating panic, some well-meaning though woefully misinformed mommy bloggers rely not on science but on emotional anecdotes to promote the idea that humans are in grave danger from GM food. Even more troubling is their inaccurate claim that its safety hasn’t been adequately examined, even though GMOs are among the most scientifically scrutinized subjects. And the thousands of legitimate studies on GMOs tell a reassuring story.

The latest analysis, which examined more than 1,700 separate studies on GM food, was conducted at the University of Perugia and published in the September issue of Critical Reviews in Biotechnology. The researchers found no instances of harm, to humans or to animals, caused by GM food, nor did researchers find any evidence that GM food is toxic or allergenic. Researchers also debunked the claim that GM crops damage the environment. This is only the latest study among hundreds of independent studies with similar findings.

Unfortunately, they make few headlines and are ignored by activists. Moms are advised that when it comes to GMOs, they should subscribe to the “precautionary principle,” which is the regulatory norm in Europe, where regulators don’t actually have to prove a product is harmful to regulate it.

Moms aren’t hearing the whole story and should be aware of the enormous costs associated with these regulations. For example, a dozen states are considering bills to label GM food. That may sound harmless, but labeling mandates will lead to fewer food choices for consumers and will harm the very businesses many of the anti-GMO activists claim to defend: the small farmer and upstart food producer. GMO labeling might be doable for large food manufacturers, but for businesses just starting out, medium-sized food companies, and small-scale farmers, the costs of these new regulations could be crushing. That’s right: Anti-GMO labeling laws will help Big Food by quashing the competition.

Smaller businesses would face a regulatory and legal nightmare just trying to enforce the labeling rules. For instance, who is ultimately responsible for product labeling — the food manufacturer,or the retailer? What if a retailer stocks products that are mislabeled? Is the retailer responsible to certify that the testing carried out by the food manufacturer is accurate? At least one sector will thrive under this policy: the trial lawyers eager to sniff out accidental errors in labeling.

Women should be aware that the market has already devised a labeling system thatgives consumers the option of buying food free of GMOs. The “organic” label signals that a product is GMO-free, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture monitors the labeling to ensure compliance.

The food and biotech industry should take notice that, rather than just reacting to misleading information from radical environmentalistgroups, they need to do a better job of explaining to moms about the safety of GMOs. This is more than just good business: Women deserve to hear the good news about the studies confirming the safety of GMOs — and the bad news about the costs of needless regulation. Busy moms have enough to worry about and will welcome getting GMOs off their already-long list of concerns.

— Julie Gunlock, a mother of three, blogs at the Independent Women’s Forum and is the author of the new book From Cupcakes to Chemicals, How the Culture of Alarmism Makes Us Afraid of Everything and How to Fight Back.

Some unrepresentative NRO reader comments follow:


Hard core Disney fans out there may remember that scene in the” Sorcerer’s Apprentice” where Mickey can’t stop the mops, brooms and walking buckets filled with soapy water – highly amusing scene but in this case we’re Mickey Mouse and our wives are the Mick’s better half, cute Minnie Mouse. We can’t stop our legislators from creating new laws, publishing more regulations and going all Government Helicopter Mom on us.

We don’t remember the incantation to make it all stop, the Democratic mops and the Republican brooms constantly increase their manic cleaning activities, we’re all drowning in their ever increasing regulatory frenzy - or at least up to our lower lips in filthy water. “The Sorcerer”, bearing an uncanny resemblance to Professor Dumbledore in Harry Potter, saves Apprentice Mickey at the last moment with only a single word. Mickey is left sopping wet, chagrined, embarrassed and having learned a valuable lesson.

Americans, unlike Mickey, haven’t learned that one important lesson and the first rule of magic: Be careful what you cast your spells for. Sheep once grazed on the White House lawn and government was much smaller and less ambitious during our Golden Age. Now the sheep are gone and soon we’ll all be government employees. Our politicians are determined to address every trivial complaint we voters can possibly imagine, from the difficulty in obtaining cheap Super Bowl tickets to occasional bouts of itchy hemorrhoids. And that’s a politician’s traditional path to wealth, fame and power. But what about us Mickeys and how did that incantation go again?

orenv to bayareaguy

But you can be sure the companies with large bottom lines are currently writing these regulations, and the guy or gal at your local farmers market is not. This is the nature of the regulatory State.
For the true believers, there are all sorts of organic certifications one can go through to "label" their food "organic". Of course about half of them, expecially anything put out by the Federal Government were written by Monsanto lawyers... Reading the FDA version of this it says you can be organic if you use organic practices, but if they "don't work" you can use poisons and still call yourself organic. But there are others created by true believers such as "Oregon Tilth certified organic". God bless them, but don't force me to buy from them.


This article implies that American education has failed on many levels particularly science. As it stands most of our corn and soybeans are products of genetic modifications. In fact almost everything we eat, even our pets have been manipulated. As far as labeling goes- corn(gm) or soybeans (gm) I wouldn't have any problems eating them and I can't wait to eat some of Aqua Bounty's new salmon (gm).

Tristan the great to JB

Isn't the blight free potato a result of genetic modification?

JB to Tristan the great

I don't know. I do recommend "Challenging Nature" by Lee Silver. He is a micro-biologist or a geneticist from Princeton and his book is very accessible to the lay or the non-science folks. For the historical among us I recommend "The Lysenko Affair"(author?) it details the anti-science left in Stalin's Russia and in it you can see the same mentality in todays extreme environmentalist.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Normally that type of crop is used for animal feed and so we would not be consuming directly.

Even the most exhaustive studies and reports certifying that GM crops are perfectly safe and no damage even the minor can be found will ever satisfy the critics.

The critics believe what they want to believe. [GM is bad]