10 Reasons I love Monsanto.

Via Waylon Lewis
on Jan 26, 2012
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monsanto love

Did I say Monsanto? I meant President Obama.

Here’s 10 Reasons I don’t love Monsanto, since we’re on the subject.

Monsanto is guilty of…

1. Contaminating the global food chain with GMOs.

2. Intimidating small farmers with bullying and lawsuits.

3. Propagating the use of destructive pesticides and herbicides across the globe.

4. Using “Terminator Technology”, which renders plants sterile.

5. Attempting to hijack UN climate change negotiations for your own fiscal benefit.

6. Reducing farmland to desert through monoculture and the use of synthetic fertilizers.

7. Inspiring suicides of hundreds of thousands of Indian farmers.

8. Causing birth defects by continuing to produce the pesticide “Round-up”

9. Attempting to bribe foreign officials

10. Infiltrating anti-GMO groups

~ click above for source ~

Screen Shot 2013-05-25 at 7.07.45 PM

Bonus: a wonderful rebuttal to pro-Monsanto comment via Reddit:

“How can one contaminate the global food chain with GMOs, when they actually help millions of people from starvation?”

Because you’re incorrect about that.

Before I get into details, just start from first principles and follow the chain of logical reasoning.

Corporations want to patent crops and pesticides, so they can:

A) Make more money by raising the price of food and controlling who can grow it; or

B) Give it away for free, to feed millions of starving people with no money

Which one would you guess?

Now for the details.

1. The more nutrients in the crop, the more is taken out of the soil. Many GM crops require expensive fertilizers and simply won’t grow in the marginal soil in regions where they are most needed. E.g. Golden Rice, which is not only impractical as a crop but only produces provitamin-A (beta carotene) which isn’t sufficiently bioavailable for the malnourished people it is intended for, since it is fat soluble. Multivitamin pills are much cheaper and more effective.

2. The more drought-resistant the crop, the more nutrients are taken out of the soil for non-edible parts, e.g. the root system. A greater percentage of the plant is scaffolding, to support smaller fruits. This increases the price.monsanto shopping

3. Pest resistance as it currently stands is almost exclusively focused on incorporating Bt-expressing genes into plants. Bt is a naturally-occurring soil bacterium which creates a toxin that is effective against certain categories of pests. Traditional organic farming practice is to apply Bt at certain strategic times. However, GM crops engineered with Bt express the toxin throughout the plant year-round. This rapidly leads to pest resistance, in the same way as overuse of antibiotics in livestock. Monsanto’s Bt Corn is failing, and so is its cotton. The main benefit to Monsanto is that it has effectively destroyed one of the few options available to organic farmers, and can simply start selling a synthetic pesticide now that targets the same pests.

4. PATENTS MAKE COSTS SKYROCKET. If any company were sincere about “feeding the poor” they would not be trying to patent the world’s food supply. GM food companies are envious of Big Pharma’s profits with patented drugs, and they want to import that IP regime straight into the food system and own it. Just imagine SOPA applying to your food. The legislation required to enforce a patent regime on food will make SOPA look reasonable by comparison.

5. THERE IS NOT A FOOD PRODUCTION SHORTAGE in any country with a working government. All the places with famine problems are precisely the same regions that are hard to get aid into. Wars and political upheaval mean that food aid gets seized by warlords and political factions. It is a distribution problem, not a crop problem. Case in point: Zimbabwe was known as the “Breadbasket of Africa”. You have probably heard about them more recently as the place with 100 trillion dollar bills that can’t buy a loaf of bread. Mugabe moved in and threw all the white farmers off their land, handing it to his cronies. Except they didn’t know how to farm, and now the country is needlessly starving. In a less extreme but related situation, there are homeless, hungry, and starving people in the USA which is a huge exporter of food. It’s a political problem, not a lack of production.

The success of Borlaug’s selectively-bred (not genetically engineered) crops depended hugely on the abundance of rich, untapped topsoils. Topsoil depletion is a huge issue in first-world agronomies. In the USA, petrochemical fertilizers are used on a massive scale, especially to grow corn.

“Since when are pesticides ‘evil'”

It is a certainty that Bt crops create resistant pests, in the same way as overuse of antibiotics creates drug-resistant tuberculosis: http://www.reddit.com/r/worldnews/comments/o6i39/totally_drugresistant_a_deadlier_form_of_tb_hits/

It is a certainty that the type of IP laws that will be passed to enforce food patents will be draconian, like SOPA for food.

If you think not being able to order medication from less-expensive pharmacies in Canada is bad, wait until people are trying to order food because Big Agriculture is trying to turn itself into Big Pharma.

gmos

ALLERGIES:

Unfortunately, transgenic food allergies mean you will have to worry about anaphylactic shock in places it never existed before. Flounder genes have already been spliced into tomatoes; how long until an apple or banana sets off your allergy to shellfish?

And in the U.S., transgenic food is not even labeled as such.

In addition to that, foods engineered to produce their own pesticides have the potential to make people ill. Starlink corn is only approved for animal feed because of this, but that was a one-off decision; there is no comprehensive regulatory system in the U.S.

It’s basically spray-n-pray.

“this is an extremely retarded statement, as if written by children”

Your objection is what Monsanto et al. bank on: the ignorance of otherwise smart people, to help them push their narratives. They want you to focus on all the theoretical benefits like in those old “In The Year 2000” articles, without understanding which claims are unrealistic and how other ones will be completely undermined by the actual implementation of a worldwide patented food regime.



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About Waylon Lewis

Waylon Lewis, founder of elephant magazine, now elephantjournal.com & host of Walk the Talk Show with Waylon Lewis, is a 1st generation American Buddhist “Dharma Brat." Voted #1 in U.S. on twitter for #green two years running, Changemaker & Eco Ambassador by Treehugger, Green Hero by Discovery’s Planet Green, Best (!) Shameless Self-Promoter at Westword's Web Awards, Prominent Buddhist by Shambhala Sun, & 100 Most Influential People in Health & Fitness 2011 by "Greatist", Waylon is a mediocre climber, lazy yogi, 365-day bicycle commuter & best friend to Redford (his rescue hound). His aim: to bring the good news re: "the mindful life" beyond the choir & to all those who didn't know they gave a care. elephantjournal.com | His first book, Things I would like to do with You, is now available.

Comments

85 Responses to “10 Reasons I love Monsanto.”

  1. Robert says:

    With you 100%, Jennifer. I've recently gained a lot more respect for Obama after reading a thoughtful retrospective of his first term, and after he refused approval for the Keystone XL pipeline.

    That said, I think his tacit support of GMOs is badly misjudged and extremely dangerous.

  2. Robert says:

    And, to be honest, I don't think that support can be excused as the actions of a good man in a corrupted system (an assessment which I think, on the whole, is a fair one).

    The issue is too large, and the consequences potentially too catastrophic, for GMOs to be tolerated unlabelled in the food chain, let alone for Monsanto's minions to be assuming positions of high power and influence.

  3. elephantjournal says:

    #
    Jennifer Wade I see that you love Obama, but how do feel about this? http://stainofthought.com/obama-appoints-monsanto
    And this? http://geneticallyengineeredfoodnews.com/gmo-and-

    I'm not saying you shouldn't love Obama, but in light of the article it struck me as odd. Is all I'm sayin'.

    #
    elephantjournal.com Great point. My personal feeling is he's a good, grounded man in a bad, money-corrupted system. Doing his best, which is pretty good. For example, we recently blogged about how his Administration has created more public renewable / clean / domestic energy jobs than any other by a factor of lots. ~ Way

  4. Andréa Balt says:

    10 reasons I love Waylon Lewis:

    1. He doesn't love Monsanto.

    Click here to see the rest.

  5. Jill Barth says:

    I posted this to the Elephant Green Facebook page. Thanks Waylon, for this insight.

    Jill Barth, Green Editor
    Join us! Like Elephant Green on Facebook

  6. karlsaliter says:

    Andrea, after clicking that repeatedly (don't worry, my neighbors didn't hear a thing)
    I'm starting to believe nothing is gonna happen.

    The most admirable part of the article is your ability to keep it down to ten.

  7. Andréa Balt says:

    Haha Karl, you're funny. Well, I was gonna link it to a post I haven't written yet. So when I do, I'll make sure I include the link and let you know.

  8. Monsanto frightens me. That's why I love these guys: http://organicconsumers.org/monsanto/index.cfm

  9. karlsaliter says:

    like.

  10. Dace says:

    Everyone who can should make a choice- for organic farming.

  11. Suri says:

    The situation is pretty bad for those of us who cant afford organic or local …gmo s are everywhere.

  12. […] 10 Reasons to love Monsanto? […]

  13. Andréa Balt says:

    Nathan, check out all the links and references included in this post so you can get a better idea. There's a lot to explain if you're not yet familiar with Monsanto's doings. Too long to fit in a comment, hence the post. 🙂

  14. Nadine says:

    Support your local CSA!!

  15. Susan says:

    I hope you're also kidding when you say you love President Obama. Obama campaigned on the stance that GMO's should be labeled but never took a step in that direction. Instead he appointed Michael R. Taylor, J.D., Deputy Commissioner for Foods. Michael Taylor is a former top executive, lawyer and lobbyist with biotech giant Monsanto Co. He has rotated in and out of law firms, Monsanto, the USDA and FDA.

  16. Steff says:

    Monsanto is the evil of our times, here’s a video about a farmer’s pigs becoming sterile after being fed GMO corn, guess who’s next? YOU!
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eilDbdLAyFs

  17. Maciel says:

    Ok, I hope this message gets to Elephant Journal.
    I hate Monsanto as well for the reasons everyone else does. I think food should be pure the way mother nature intended.

    But..I get this comment a lot from non haters: "GMO's can help world hunger"

    I think that is untrue and BS so, without browsing to your site..because I'm at work and have limited time of free browsing..could you please point me to articles that can argue otherwise so I can have evidence to show non-believers that is not the case?

    Thank you!

  18. Dylan says:

    you forgot the very simple one of if they're trying to feed the whole world why would they make terminator genes?

  19. sati_demise says:

    There are many non GMO foods out there. buy all sorts of lentils, beans, millet, wild rice, etc. There are still plenty of non GMO foods, and we would like to keep it that way. GMOs are in all processed food, and those foods were never good for you anyway.

    Change your buying habits, set aside some time to cook and freeze or store healthy options and it can be done economically.

  20. sati_demise says:

    Exactly.

  21. Pam Watson says:

    What's good for them is good for the drug companies, is good for Big Brother…haven't you heard?

  22. Meghan says:

    Um, Obama appointed Michael Taylor (Monsanto's VP) as senior advisor to the commissioner of the FDA last August, FYI.

  23. Diana says:

    All talk and no action.

  24. 60's protester says:

    You might also find it interesting that if more people decided not to eat meat there would be a surplus of grain/soy …enough to feed the world. As it stand now, most of the grain raised goes into the feeding of animals and poultry. But where is the profit in that? Makes you want to go hmmmmmm…….

  25. Tonya Martin says:

    I hope people realize the big picture that all of Monsanto’s actions as indicated in this list add up to: Monsanto is intent on taking over the world. If terminator technology spreads through genetic drift then no one will be able to save seeds to plant the next season; they will have to buy them new every year. Further, Monsanto has successfully sued farmers whose crops have been contaminated by their GMOs for “stealing” their GMO “benefits. And guess who has been quietly buying up all of the seed companies over the past decade? Monsanto also has its sights set on owning water supplies throughout the world.

    P.S. The Obama comment does weaken the strength of this excellent list because, as with Bill Clinton, supporting Monsanto and GMOs is actually one of the failings of an otherwise overall good — or at least miles better than the alternative — President.

  26. elephantjournal says:

    I hear you. Here's some tips. I buy bulk…and actually, if I buy simple food on the outside ring of the grocery store (sweet potatoes, apples) it can be cheaper than processed foods and fast food. Check this: http://www.elephantjournal.com/2011/06/the-only-r… and this: http://www.elephantjournal.com/2010/07/how-real-p… and http://www.elephantjournal.com/2010/11/9-steps-to

    We have two others by two mothers, one pro one con, re shopping organic. You can search on our site if still interested after the above links. Hope helps! ~ Waylon

  27. elephantjournal says:

    The point of the Obama mention was…well, click the link on his name above. He's not perfect, anyone who thought he was, that's there issue, not his. But he's a good man in my estimation and the estimation of other moderates…and he's stuck in a tough system. He could use some loud, noisy, and yes critical support. ~ Waylon

  28. Lisa says:

    I agree Steff, Monsanto is evil. We are already sterile. Infertility is an epidemic!

  29. Emily says:

    Yep, and under his watch they are raiding Amish farms, LA food co-op, and others all in the name of the mighty corporations.

  30. […] READING……via 10 Reasons I love Monsanto. | elephant journal. Advertisement GA_googleAddAttr("AdOpt", "1"); GA_googleAddAttr("Origin", "other"); […]

  31. Margeaux Deas says:

    You got that RIGHT !!!

  32. tony from philly says:

    oh yeah, Monsanto's GMO history is definitely jail cell worthy for their entire company, but can we also not forget that they poisoned every waterway in the world with PCBs? thanks assholes! please rot in hell with all your stock holders.

  33. __MikeG__ says:

    Statements, no references. Please back up your post with science.

  34. __MikeG__ says:

    Waylon, all your anti-GMO comments link to Natural Society. I personally know nothing about them but the name would suggest an agenda. Are any of your claims backed up by studies by university or scientific organizations? I asked Mr. Sommers, who made a pro-GMO post, to provide evidence also. I am an evidence driven cranky prick and I would to see the documentation. Thanks.

  35. Mathew Sommers says:

    a start….

    Benbrook C. (2001) Do GM crops mean less pesticide use? The Royal Society of Chemistry 204-207.

    Chaves M.M. & Oliveira M.M. (2004) Mechanisms underlying plant resilience to water deficits: prospects for water-saving agriculture. Journal of Experimental Botany 55, 2365-2384.

    Cunningham S.D. & Ow D.W. (1996) Promises and prospects of phytoremediation. Plant Physiology 110, 715-719.

    Daly, M. (2000) Engineering radiation-resistant Bacteria for environmental biotechnology. Current Option in Biotechnology 11, 280-285.

    Doty S. (2008) Enhancing phytoremediation through the use of transgenics and endophytes. New Phytologist 179, 318-333.

    Dua M., Singh A., Sethunathan N. & Johri A.K. (2002) Biotechnology and bioremediation: successes and limitations. Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology 59, 143-152.

    Dunfield K. E. & Germida J.J. (2004) Impacts of genetically modified crops on soil- and plant-associated microbial communities. Journal of Environmental Quality 33, 806-815.

    Eapen S. & D’Souza S.F. (2005) Prospects of genetic engineering of plants for phytoremediation of toxic metals. Biotechnology Advances 23, 97-114.

    Eckardt N.A., Cominelli E., Galbiati M. & Tonelli C. (2009) Future of food and science: food and water for life. The Plant Cell 21, 368-372.

    Fernandez-Cornejo J. & McBride W.D. (2000) Genetically engineered crops for pest management in U.S. agriculture: farm-level effects. USDA Report 786 1-23. < http://www.ers.usda.gov/Publications/&gt; 31 March 2010.

    Gianessi L & Carpenter J. (2000) Agricultural biotechnology: insect control benefits. NCFAP 1-98. &lt ;http://www.ncfap.org/&gt; 1 April 2010.

    Givens W.A., Shaw D.R., Kruger G.R., Johnson W.G., Weller S.C., Young B.G., Wilson R.G. Owen M.D.K. & Jordan D. (2009) Roundup ready crops have major positive impacts on tillage practices. Weed Technology 23, 150-155.

    James C. (2008) Global status of commercial biotech/GM crops: 2008. ISAA Brief 39 1-275. &lt ;http://www.isaaa.org/&gt; 3 April 2010.

    Lovely D. (2003) Cleaning up with genomics: applying molecular biology to bioremediation. Nature Reviews Microbiology 1, 35-44.

    Phipps R.H. & Park J.R. (2002) Environmental benefits of genetically modified crops: global and European perspective on their ability to reduce pesticide use. Journal of Animal and Feed Sciences 11, 1-18.

    Pulford I.D. & Watson C. (2003) Phytoremediation of heavy metal-contaminated land by trees- a review. Environment International 29, 529-540.

    Qaim M. & Zilberman D. (2003) Yield effect of genetically modified crops in developing countries. Science 299, 900-902.

    Sayler G. S. & Ripp S. (2000) Field applications of genetically engineered microorganisms for bioremediation processes. Current Options in Biotechnology 11, 286-289.

    Tilman D., Cassman K.G., Matson P.A., Naylor R. & Polasky S. (2002) Agricultural sustainability and intensive production practices. Nature 418, 671-677.

    Trewavas A. (2004) A critical assessment of organic farming-and-food assertions with particular respect to the UK and the potential environmental benefits of no-till agriculture. Crop Production 23, 757-781.

    Vinocur B. & Altman A. (2005) Recent advances in engineering plant tolerance to abiotic stress: achievements and limitations. Current Options in Biotechnology 16, 123-132.

    Wake D.B. & Vredenburg V.T. (2008) Are we in the midst of the sixth mass extinction? A view from the world of amphibians. PNAS 105, 11466-11473.

    Wang W., Vinocur B. & Altman A. (2003) Plant responses to drought, salinity and extreme temperatures: toward genetic engineering for stress tolerance. Planta 218, 1-14.

    White C., Sharman A.K. & Gadd G.M. (1998) An integrated microbial process for bioremediation of soils contaminated with toxic metals. Nature Biotechnology 16, 572-575.

    Wolfenbarger L.L. & Phifer P.R. (2000) The ecological risks and benefits of genetically engineered plants. Science 290, 2088-2093.

    Wu C.H., Wood T.K., Mulchandani A. & Chen W. (2006) Engineering plant-microbe symbiosis for rhizoremediation of heavy metals. Applied and Environmental Microbiology 72, 1129-1134.

  36. Mathew Sommers says:

    I appreciate your asking 🙂 This is from a project I did for a critical thinking class at CU a while back. Good Stuff 🙂

  37. elephantjournal says:

    This blog sources from a single thread…that's why they're all from the same source. There are compartively few pro-organic science-based sources, since all the big studies are funded by the big corps who stand to make money. That said, I know Organic Center and others know of studies. Steve Hoffman, Organic Consumers…they have their "bias"—that pesticides/poisons aren't good for us or the health of what we're eating, or the soil—but worth taking a look at. Michael Pollan also discusses the ability of organics to produce more than otherwise, if done right, due to healthier richer soil.

    As you said, my article is linked wholesale from its source. If you want other sources, go for it—do come back and share your findings, if so inspired. I agree it's good to know where we're getting our info from!

  38. […] 10 Reasons I love Monsanto. | elephant journal. […]

  39. charmayne jayne says:

    if gmo are not so bad then why is monsanto so against package labeling. that's the only fact anyone needs, when you don't want to brag about your product then simple logic tells you that somethings wrong end of story!!!

  40. charmayne jayne says:

    if it's so ok then why not package food that contains gmo? it's not that hard!!!

  41. Emily says:

    The grains that they give away for "free" are still licensed. That means if they plant it, the next year they have to buy the seed at full price. They can't eat part of the harvest and replant the rest without getting into a lawsuit.

  42. […] practices lately.  we have all bitched voraciously all over the Internet.   Go HERE to read about their deplorable business […]

  43. Linda says:

    I think that nature is perfect the way it is and we do not need to mess with it. There is only one reason Monsanto is doing what they are doing and that is for their own greed. We do not need to put any more man made chemicals into our dirt or our bodys. Why are the bats, birds, fish, bees and people dying? We need to do what is right for the Earth and all of us who live on her. The Earth provides for us and we need to protect her as she does for us. The Earth does not need us but we sure do need her. Take away good drinking water, and what will happen? We need to protect our farmers from Monsanto. How can we sit back and let them take over our food and the seed? We are the people and we can make a difference. Say no to GMO! Protect this beautiful Earth, for it truely is Heaven, only man makes it hell.
    PEACE LOVE UNITY RESPECT

  44. Lakshmi says:

    I love Monsanto because it is such an easy way to explain the concept of evil: "What is evil? Monsanto."

  45. werdtoyamotha says:

    Thank you for mentioning this!! The FDA and USDA has been in bed with Monsanto for many, many years. Unfortunately, Obama is keeping up the trend. So disappointing.

  46. werdtoyamotha says:

    It's ironic that the article started with love for Obama, isn't it?

  47. BooMonsanto says:

    Watch "The Future of Food" on Netflix streaming…It's a great documentary about Monsanto's evil ways.

  48. Tamara says:

    Right on Waylon!!!!!!!!!

  49. __MikeG__ says:

    Thanks, I'll check them out.

  50. __MikeG__ says:

    End of story if only arguing a straw man.

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