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 Post subject: 739 WHAT WILL THE MONSANTO BUG DO TO US?
PostPosted: Thu Aug 18, 2011 7:30 am 
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I was a teenage herbicide. I spent many of the summer days of my youth hoeing weeds for farms in Montana’s Yellowstone River Valley. It was hot, sweaty work, but vitally important work. Left unchecked, those weeds I killed would have taken the farmers’ sunshine, water, and nutrients, and left them without any crops for their winters.

For a young teens with big dreams, weeding is never much fun. I remember looking up to the passenger jets flying over at 35,000 feet, and calling out to them,
Quote:
Take me away!
And, finally, one did.

The Monsanto Corporation has freed millions from the toil of hoeing weeds in the hot summer sunshine. Monsanto’s glysophate herbicide, which is sold under the trade name Roundup, and its Roundup-Ready genetically engineered crops, make it possible for one farmer to kill millions of weeds in the cool of an air-conditioned tractor. Consequently, Monsanto’s technologies are now used in 85% to 90% of the nation’s corn and soybean crops, and when its roundup-ready alfalfa spreads across the land, America will become drenched in glysophate, and its young will be freed to pursue more productive interests, like hanging around street corners in hooded sweatshirts.

But wait! Some say there is a cost to the use of all this glysophate. Plant pathologist Dr. Don Huber and others point to the existence of a newly discovered– and yet unnamed– pathogen that is causing spontaneous abortion rates of 20% to 45% in the animal populations that eat these glysophate-friendly, genetically-engineered food crops. If true, we ask…

What will the Monsanto Bug do to us? (Food Chain Radio #739)


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 Post subject: Re: 739 WHAT WILL THE MONSANTO BUG DO TO US?
PostPosted: Thu Aug 18, 2011 7:46 pm 
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This from Tony in St Louis...

"why so few in authority want to consider these questions." I doubt if it has anything to do with their powerful lobby in DC (larger budget than a lot of countries) - or the fact that Supreme Court Justice - Clearance Thomas is the former chief legal council for Monsanto - all of that is probably just a coincidence.


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 Post subject: Re: 739 WHAT WILL THE MONSANTO BUG DO TO US?
PostPosted: Thu Aug 18, 2011 7:52 pm 
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This from Noah in Kansas...

Frankly, I am getting so tired of hearing about the Monsanto connection and Huber that I could puke! You don't have to read very far to know that glysophate has been the active ingredient in any number of herbisides besides Roundup since the early 1970's. If we were going to have abortions, low birth rates, etc. those things would have shown up by now. Our hay supplier already had his roundup ready alfalfa planted before the litigation began so he was allowed to keep it. We have fed our dairy herd roundup ready alfalfa for a number of years. Our does always have twins and often we have triplets and quads with no birth defects. Our herd is very productive with two of our milkers on the top ten list. All you have to do to see high quality, fine stemmed alfalfa and healthy animals with shiny hair coats is go to http://www.goddardfarm.com So you will excuse me if I don't agree with Huber's fortune telling fantasies!


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 Post subject: Re: 739 WHAT WILL THE MONSANTO BUG DO TO US?
PostPosted: Thu Aug 18, 2011 7:56 pm 
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This from Linn...


Garth Nicolson is editor of the Journal of Clinical and Experimental Metastasis, and the Journal of Cellular Biochemistry and one of the most cited scientists in the world, has published over 600 medical and scientific papers, edited more than 14 books, and served on the editorial boards of 28 medical and scientific journals.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6e2ljD3hkhg&feature=related

Another important video of him, talking about ways we are all being damaged . http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lU12h6lWi9I&NR=1

Donald W. Scott, editor of The Journal of Degenerative Diseases and co-founder of the Common Cause Medical Research Foundation.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w8FX-B9vcgg&feature=related

Aids-like virus in plants
http://www.naturalnews.com/032441_pesticide_AIDS.html

GMOs and vaccines in relation to infertility.
http://oilgeopolitics.net/Swine_Flu/Gates_Vaccines/gates_vaccines.html

Causing infertility is clearly desired since pharma companies are now patenting vaccines to achieve it, yet they are keeping it quiet as well as mandating vaccines with the central sterilizing ingredient in it.
http://organichealthadviser.com/archives/
The agent is in all these vaccines, most mandated for kids.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_vaccine_ingredients

All that is lacking is squalene but the new FDA rule would take care of that
http://www.nvic.org/NVIC-Vaccine-News/June-2010/FDA-Proposes-Dangerous-Vaccine-Rule-Change.aspx

And HHS and Novartis got a giant contract together (stimulus money) to produce it.
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/dr-sherri-tenpenny/novartis-is-celebrating-s_b_372551.html

And why does the new process for vaccines look so much like the process for genetically engineering seeds?
http://coto2.wordpress.com/2011/07/17/murdoch-and-vaccines-exposure-of-murdochs-crimes-expose-a-much-larger-story/


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 Post subject: Re: 739 WHAT WILL THE MONSANTO BUG DO TO US?
PostPosted: Thu Aug 18, 2011 8:18 pm 
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This from Steve in California...

I think there are some things you should know about Don Huber before your give him a platform on your show. I am a plant pathologist, like Huber. I don't work for Monsanto or for any biotech company. I'm an independent consultant and blogger.

I've spoken with people in Huber's previous department and they are really quite embarrassed about this individual. He does not provide data or anything you would normally use to validate claims. He hasn't really worked in the lab for years. No one is quite sure of his agenda, but he has no credibility in scientific or ag circles. I can see why Monsanto would not want to be on a call like this if they want to follow the maxim: "if you can't say something nice don't say anything at all."


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 Post subject: Re: 739 WHAT WILL THE MONSANTO BUG DO TO US?
PostPosted: Thu Aug 18, 2011 8:21 pm 
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This from Rady....

Michael ~ here's a heads up on another bug involving Monsanto: Western rootworm beetle
http://foodfreedom.wordpress.com/2011/08/18/rootworm-could-be-resistant-to-genetically-modified-crops/

Monsanto's GM corn may collapse due to rootworm beetle that can now eat it. It seems they've developed a resistance.

Monsanto replied directly on my blog, so you may want to read their press release and perhaps include this other bug in your show.
http://www.monsanto.com/newsviews/Pages/gassmann-research-reminder-of-need-for-comprehensive-IPM.aspx

This is freakin serious -- GM corn accounts for 65% of all corn grown in US
http://www.ers.usda.gov/Data/BiotechCrops/


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 Post subject: Re: 739 WHAT WILL THE MONSANTO BUG DO TO US?
PostPosted: Thu Aug 18, 2011 8:24 pm 
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Another from Steve in California...

Ask him where he published this in a peer reviewed journal. Ask him if he has completed "Koch's Postulates." Ask him if he has identified the organism using one of many available methods. Ask him why if there was the sort of abortion rate you were quoting are the US herds not decimated after 15 years of feeding. Ask him why his own colleagues have distanced themselves from his work for lack of proof.


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 Post subject: Re: 739 WHAT WILL THE MONSANTO BUG DO TO US?
PostPosted: Sat Aug 20, 2011 6:12 am 
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THIS FROM CATHERINE...

Since almost ALL corn in USA is GMO [genetically modified to grow its own pesticide Bt (Bacillus thuringiensis) Bt-corn], I have NOT eaten corn in years nor will I purchase any corn or corn-containing product. I also am skeptical about organic corn because it can be cross-pollinated. We don't know if the Bt organism can grow in our intestinal tracts and that's serious stuff that no one wants to do studies about. However, there is some indication that can happen. Imagine your insides being a living pesticide factory! So thanks, but no thanks, for your delicious-sounding corn fritters. I'll have to pass not only on them but any GMO food products. Furthermore, GMOs aren't good for the environment because inordinate amounts of pesticides are sprayed on crops because they 'cant take it', won't die from the glysophate sprayed and farmers must buy much more than they used to under that premise of 'the more, the better' and yet that pesticide runs off into streams and ground water. No wonder we have so much cancer?


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 Post subject: Re: 739 WHAT WILL THE MONSANTO BUG DO TO US?
PostPosted: Sat Aug 20, 2011 10:11 am 
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This from Maria in California...

Here's what is frustrating me: I am not \"scientific\" but have lots of common sense. My common sense about Monsanto, their take-over of the seed world, Round-up, aka glyphosphates (sp?) is that the people who support these chemicals are supporting animals & people being greatly harmed - or dead - by continued use of said chemicals & eating the \"foods\" produced by Monsanto seeds aka \"Round-up-Ready-seeds\" and other GMO crops. What HAS been proven, in my own non-scientific world, which is where MOST of us live, is that if you give an animal food sprayed w/ glyphosphates and that animal produces dead or damaged off-spring, then that is a HUGE problem. It would be best NOT to give them that food again. If you give an animal ORGANIC food & that animal produces an excellent, healthy off-spring, then that food would be the one you would want to keep giving the animal. Easy. Simple. No scientific studies needed. No big money needed, no grants, no butting-of-heads w/ the scientific world... Just the simple, pure facts. If you do A then B results. If you do B and C results. Easy. The facts ARE in with our babies and children... Autism is on the rise as if it were an epidmeic!! Chemicals in food, chemicals in vaccinations, and in our environment, which are all around us, seem to be the focus of the problems. Why not REDUCE chemicals? Why not feed ourselves organic foods? Why not be as HEALTHY as we can be? Why do the chemical companies & people who support them claiming that these chemicals are GOOD for us & our animals? It is clear to me & millions of others that these chemicals are poisoning us, our animals, our soils, our air, and other crops being grown near by with cross-contamination. Why contain this insanity of DEATH???????? I have more to say. I cannot post this until perhaps Monday, when I am officially confirmed in your system/website. I liked the show today... but it was way too scientific and WAY TOO SHORT!! And, when you have someone scientific on, my opinion that is NON-scieintific should be heard... someone to give a simple, clear, concise statement about what the other speaker is saying. I know he was old, and I love him for that, and as for me, I am getting older too, and need MORE time to process & gets my words out. The younger men ramroaded over him with their verbage like BMW drivers on the road trying to make you, the older one, get off the same road. Michael, thank you for trying to get these facts said, for trying to bring this HUGE problem to the forefront. Keep it going!! Keep talking.


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 Post subject: Re: 739 WHAT WILL THE MONSANTO BUG DO TO US?
PostPosted: Sat Aug 20, 2011 11:36 am 
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This from show guest Professor Don Huber...

Michael,

Thank you for having me on your program. As Dr. Vincelli's stated desire for peer review, etc. highlighted, it is a double standard since there are NO peer reviewed scientific studies showing the safety of either glyphosate or the genetic engineering process, yet there are a growing number of peer-reviewed scientific papers showing that they are not safe as used! The scientific 'precautionary principle' has been abandoned in the regulatory process while we are maintaining our research to comply with that established principle.

Don M. Huber
Professor Emeritus, Purdue University


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 Post subject: Re: 739 WHAT WILL THE MONSANTO BUG DO TO US?
PostPosted: Sat Aug 20, 2011 11:42 am 
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This from caller to the show Dr. Paul Vincelli...

Michael, thanks for hosting me on the show.

The one aspect that I really wasn’t prepared for was the notion that there was some sort of conspiracy to suppress research on harmful effects of glyphosate. I’m still in shock that that idea would gain air time.

I’ve actually reviewed some of the evidence of a new pathogen, and what I have seen is not particularly impressive.

As I said on the program, the research should certainly continue in case it is true. However, I am party to no conspiracy—I couldn’t live with myself if I were.

Paul Vincelli
Extension Professor and Provost's Distinguished Service Professor
Department of Plant Pathology
University of Kentucky


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 Post subject: Re: 739 WHAT WILL THE MONSANTO BUG DO TO US?
PostPosted: Sat Aug 20, 2011 12:18 pm 
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This from Michael Olson in response to Dr. Paul Vanelli...

Paul...

I don't believe anyone would ever accuse you of a conspiracy. But Dr. Huber's "secret letter" presentation to USDA certainly suggested there is an effort being put forth by someone to stifle the academic pursuit of truth...

"Abundant evidence exists of suppression of scientific research into potential problems associated with genetically engineered crops and there is a climate of ongoing hostility towards serious efforts to investigate potential deleterious effects of current agricultural practices. Suppression of free scientific inquiry has been repeatedly documented, including a cautionary letter from 26 university entomologists who wrote anonymously to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency out of fear of retaliation and likely harm to careers. Reports of recent efforts to stifle open research are now surfacing at major land grant universities in association with the recent findings related to glyphosate and the new organism."

I do not know what the truth is with respect to glyphosate and related genetically-engineered crops. I do know that a professor emeritus from one of the nation's premiere academic institutions is raising questions, and that a whole bunch of people do not want to hear him asking these questions. I try to imagine why he would raise them in the first place. He is retired and, seemingly at least, does not have a career to worry about anymore. And he certainly sounds like he knows what he is talking about. He even claims to have completed the Koch's Postulates.

So why are people so afraid of Dr. Don Huber? Who released his "secret letter" to USDA's Vilsack? Why does the government not wish to listen? Or investigate?

If Dr. Huber is wrong, it would certainly make more sense to prove him wrong than to shout him down.

All that being said, I would love to feature the science that proves glyphosate and related genetically engineered crops are safe, and would happy to host you or anyone else who can bring such evidence to the table.

Michael Olson
Host, Food Chain Radio


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 Post subject: Re: 739 WHAT WILL THE MONSANTO BUG DO TO US?
PostPosted: Sat Aug 20, 2011 12:53 pm 
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Dr. Paul Vincelli reponds to Michael Olson...

Michael, you misunderstand. We’re not “shouting him down”, we’re challenging him to produce evidence. If we public scientists didn’t do this, we would be failing in our obligation to serve the public. No one should be allowed to make claims under the title of “scientist” without being challenged for evidence. No one is going to reorient their research program to disprove extraordinary claims without seeing meaningful evidence.

Re: your last paragraph, have you ever interviewed Pamela Ronald, author of Tomorrow's Table: Organic Farming, Genetics, and the Future of Food? I may have other suggestions as well.

Thanks for responding.

With respect,
Extension Professor and Provost's Distinguished Service Professor


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 Post subject: Re: 739 WHAT WILL THE MONSANTO BUG DO TO US?
PostPosted: Sat Aug 20, 2011 3:43 pm 
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This repost is from Tom Philpott at http://www.growswitch.com/blog/2011/08/usda-scientist-monsantos-roundup-herbicide-damages-soil/

According to USDA scientist Robert Kremer, who spoke at a conference last week, Roundup may also be damaging soil—a sobering thought, given that it’s applied to hundreds of millions of acres of prime farmland in the United States and South America. Here’s a Reuters account of Kremer’s presentation:

The heavy use of Monsanto’s Roundup herbicide appears to be causing harmful changes in soil and potentially hindering yields of the genetically modified crops that farmers are cultivating, a US government scientist said on Friday. Repeated use of the chemical glyphosate, the key ingredient in Roundup herbicide, impacts the root structure of plants, and 15 years of research indicates that the chemical could be causing fungal root disease, said Bob Kremer, a microbiologist with the US Department of Agriculture’s Agricultural Research Service.

Now, Kremer has been raising these concerns for a couple of years now—and as Tom Laskaway showed in this 2010 Grist article, the USDA has been downplaying them for just as long. Laskaway asked Kremer’s boss at the Agricultural Research Service, Michael Shannon, to comment on Kremer’s research. According to Laskaway, Shannon “admitted that Kremer’s results are valid, but said that the danger they represent pales in comparison to the superweed threat.”

So let’s get this straight: The head of the USDA’s crop-research service agrees that Roundup damages soil and thinks the superweed problem is even more troublesome. In the face of these two menaces, you might expect the USDA to intervene to curtail Roundup use. But Shannon meant his statement as a rationale for ignoring Kremer’s work. Meanwhile, the USDA keeps approving new Roundup Ready crops—ensuring that the herbicide’s domain over US farmland will expand dramatically.

Kremer commented on his employer’s reception of his work in a Reuters article last year:

“This could be something quite big. We might be setting up a huge problem,” said Kremer, who expressed alarm that regulators were not paying enough attention to the potential risks from biotechnology on the farm, including his own research…”Science is not being considered in policy setting and deregulation,” said Kremer. “This research is important. We need to be vigilant.”

Meanwhile, at a conference in Boulder, Colorado, in early August, another mainstream ag expert raised serious concerns about the poison, according to an account in Boulder Weekly. Iowa-based consultant Michael McNeill, who has a Ph.D. in quantitative genetics and plant pathology from Iowa State University, advises large-scale corn and soy farmers on weed control and soil fertility. He’s observing trends in the field that are consistent with Kremer’s research. Here’s Boulder Weekly:

McNeill explains that glyphosate is a chelating agent, which means it clamps onto molecules that are valuable to a plant, like iron, calcium, manganese, and zinc.…The farmers’ increased use of Roundup is actually harming their crops, according to McNeill, because it is killing micronutrients in the soil that they need, a development that has been documented in several scientific papers by the nation’s leading experts in the field. For example, he says, harmful fungi and parasites like fusarium, phytopthora and pythium are on the rise as a result of the poison, while beneficial fungi and other organisms that help plants reduce minerals to a usable state are on the decline. He explains that the overuse of glyphosate means that oxidizing agents are on the rise, creating oxides that plants can’t use, leading to lower yields and higher susceptibility to disease.

According to McNeill, problems with Roundup aren’t limited to the soil—they also extend to Roundup Ready crops and the animals that eat them.

McNeill says he and his colleagues are seeing a higher incidence of infertility and early-term abortion in cattle and hogs that are fed on GMO crops. He adds that poultry fed on the suspect crops have been exhibiting reduced fertility rates.

McNeill made an interesting comparison to the Boulder Weekly reporter: “Just as DDT was initially hailed as a miracle pesticide and later banned, researchers are beginning to discover serious problems with glyphosate.”

Well, the EPA has been in the process of reviewing glyphosate’s registration since July 2009, but I’ve seen no evidence that the agency has the fortitude to challenge Monsanto and its multibillion-dollar empire. Just last week, Kremer told Reuters that neither the EPA nor the USDA has shown interest in further exploring his research. Maybe Monsanto’s PR team doesn’t have much to worry about, after all.

Tom Philpott is the food and ag blogger for Mother Jones


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 Post subject: Re: 739 WHAT WILL THE MONSANTO BUG DO TO US?
PostPosted: Mon Aug 22, 2011 6:53 am 
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This from Karl in Michigan...



Hello Michael Olson, My name is Karl Haro von Mogel, I am a Ph.D. Candidate at UW-Madison studying plant genetics, and on the side I co-run an independent group blog on plant genetics called Biofortified, at www.biofortified.org. I heard about your interview with Don Huber, although I have not yet listened to it, and I wanted to provide more information that I got from my research, and interview with Dr. Huber. In this discussion here, http://www.metrofarm.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=241 Huber says that there are no studies demonstrating the safety of genetically engineered crops. This is completely false, as we maintain a list of such studies on our blog, here: http://www.biofortified.org/genera/studies-for-genera/ The number is more than 300, not including an additional 40 from the EU that were published in a large volume. He is making things up here. In the forum above, you asked the question about \'who\' leaked Huber\'s \'secret\' letter to the public. I tracked the letter\'s release to the first person who posted it to the web, a journalist, who was in contact with Huber for over a month before the letter appeared on the web. He told me in no uncertain terms that Don Huber gave him explicit permission to publish the letter online. The reason Huber released it to the web, as described by the journalist I talked to, was that he didn\'t get the response he wanted from the USDA, and wanted to try the public instead. It was not an accidental leak. I also have some more information about the issue that I have not published on our blog yet. If you are interested - just let me know. Regards, Karl Haro von Mogel


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