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Frenchfry

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Re: GMO's... Good or bad?
« Reply #90 on: November 10, 2013, 01:19:19 PM »

Monsanto denies link between GMOs and cancer, birth defects in Argentina

Agriculture giant Monsanto entered Argentina in 1996. Since then, the South American country has become the world's largest soybean producer, and nearly all of them are genetically modified. Monsanto provides the majority of the pesticides used in Argentina. Now, a new AP report says that the chemicals are affecting the 12 million people who live in the country's farm belt, where the AP documented dozens of cases where agricultural poisons were applied to crops in ways that are contrary to existing laws. Pesticides are showing up in drinking water and the soil. A government report found that 80 percent of children surveyed had pesticides in their blood. Cancer rates are well above the national average and birth defects have risen dramatically. Monsanto disputes that they are responsible for Argentina's health problems. RT's Ameera David talks with Elizabeth Kucinich, director of policy for the Center for Food Safety and the executive producer for the documentary "GMO OMG," about how GMOs are affecting both Argentinians and Americans alike.

www.youtube.com/watch?v=sY16uNIjzKk


====

Corporate cash sways voters on GMO foods

www.youtube.com/watch?v=MWdegc6RgGA
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This ban is not set to expire."

No emails, no warnings, no communication whatsoever...just that ban

May be what happened to the other libs as well.

I guess disabling the report to admin link only on the lib side was indicative of the slanted games they play.

Enjoy your spoon-fed Faux News type right-wing echo-chamber.

Edited to add:

This is the only way to answer some of the questions posed:

1) I did nothing to warrant the banishment, it's political.

2) It's the router that's blocked but considering all the nonsense right-wing games being played by those running the site...it's just not worth it to bypass the banishment block.

3) The moron stalkers from MT contemplating a visit will be considered a threat and can expect to have a bad day if they act upon those idiotic thoughts.

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livewire

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Re: GMO's... Good or bad?
« Reply #91 on: May 14, 2014, 01:05:00 PM »

Interesting article describing the GMO issue.  Basically, it's a bunch of concern over nothing.



WASHINGTON (AP) — Genetically modified foods have been around for years, but most Americans have no idea if they are eating them.

The Food and Drug Administration says they don't need to be labeled, so the state of Vermont has moved forward on its own. On Thursday, Gov. Peter Shumlin signed legislation making his state the first to require labeling of genetically modified organisms, or GMOs.

What about the rest of the country? And does labeling matter?

There's a lot of confusion about genetically modified foods and their safety.

Some people feel very strongly about GMOs. Opponents, who at times have protested in the streets, say consumers have the right to know whether their food contains GMOs. The Vermont law is their first major victory.

The food industry and companies that genetically engineer seeds have pushed back against the labeling laws, saying GMOs are safe and labels would be misleading.

"It's really polarizing," says New York University's Marion Nestle, a professor of nutrition and food studies. "There's no middle ground."

A look at the debate and some of the facts about genetically modified foods:

___

WHAT THEY ARE

GMOs are not really a "thing," Nestle says, and that's hard for the average consumer to grasp. You can't touch or feel a GMO.

Genetically modified foods are plants or animals that have had genes copied from other plants or animals inserted into their DNA. It's not a new idea — humans have been tinkering with genes for centuries through selective breeding. Think dogs bred to be more docile pets, cattle bred to be beefier or tomatoes bred to be sweeter. Turkeys were bred to have bigger breasts — better for Thanksgiving dinner.

What's different about genetically modified or engineered foods is that the manipulation is done in a lab. Engineers don't need to wait for nature to produce a desired gene; they speed up the process by transferring a gene from one plant or animal to another.

What are the desired traits? Most of the nation's corn and soybeans are genetically engineered to resist pests and herbicides. A papaya in Hawaii is modified to resist a virus. The FDA is considering an application from a Massachusetts company to approve a genetically engineered salmon that would grow faster than traditional salmon.

___

IN YOUR GROCERY CART

Most of the genetically modified corn and soybeans are used in cattle feed, or are made into ingredients like corn oil, corn starch, high fructose corn syrup or soybean oil.

Even in some of those products, the manufacturing process itself may eventually remove some of the modified genes.

A few fruits and vegetables are engineered — the Hawaiian papaya and some squash and zucchini, for example. Only a small amount of sweet corn, the corn we eat, is genetically modified.

But there's no genetically modified meat or fish, like the fast-growing salmon, currently in the market for human consumption; the Food and Drug Administration has yet to approve any.

___

THE RISKS

The vast majority of scientific research has found genetically engineered foods to be generally safe.

An Italian scientist's review of 10 years of research, published in 2013, concluded that the scientific research conducted so far has not detected "any significant hazard directly connected with the use of GM crops."

One French research team raised safety questions, but their much-criticized 2012 study linking genetically modified corn to rat tumors was retracted in 2013 by the scientific publisher, who cited weak evidence supporting the conclusions.

Even the food police say they are safe: The Center for Science in the Public Interest, a well-known critic of food companies and artificial and unhealthy ingredients in foods, has not opposed genetically modified foods, on the basis that there's no evidence they are harmful.

Though what we are eating now appears safe, the main concerns for the future would be new genetically engineered foods — from the United States or abroad — that somehow become allergenic or toxic through the engineering process. The FDA says the foods they have evaluated to this point have not been any more likely to cause an allergic or toxic reaction than foods from traditionally bred plants.

Unlike animals, the FDA is not required to approve genetically engineered crops for consumption. However, most companies will go through a voluntary safety review process with FDA before they put them on the market.

____

THE BENEFITS

There are clear benefits for the agricultural industry — the crops that are engineered to ward off pests or to tolerate herbicides, for example. And companies like Monsanto that produce modified seeds say their technologies will be needed to feed a rising world population as they engineer crops to adapt to certain climates and terrains.

While most modified foods have so far been grown to resist chemicals, pests or disease, advocates envision engineering crops to make them more nutritious as well. Food animals have been engineered to be bred to be free of diseases, be cleaner in their environments or grow more efficiently, though none has yet been approved in the United States.

____

THE POLITICS

There is an escalating political fight between the labeling advocates and the food industry, which has dug in against labeling. In the absence of a federal labeling standard, GMO opponents have gone to the states to try to get a patchwork of labeling laws approved — a move that could eventually force a national standard.

Ballot measures in California and Washington state failed, but the legislative effort prevailed in Vermont. Maine and Connecticut also have passed laws requiring labels, but they don't take effect unless other states follow suit. The food industry is widely expected to challenge the Vermont law in court.

The state efforts aren't slowing down. According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, there are 85 pending GMO labeling bills in 29 states.

In Congress, the food industry is pushing a House bill that would head off efforts to enact mandatory labeling of genetically modified ingredients by proposing new voluntary labels nationwide — an attempted end run around the state-by-state laws.

Currently, the FDA says labeling of genetically modified foods isn't needed because the nutritional content is the same as non-GMO varieties.


http://bigstory.ap.org/article/genetically-modified-foods-confuse-consumers
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sammy

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Re: GMO's... Good or bad?
« Reply #92 on: May 14, 2014, 01:18:00 PM »

Interesting read. I've never been particularly worried about GMOs in food.
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SidecarFlip

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Re: GMO's... Good or bad?
« Reply #93 on: May 14, 2014, 10:00:21 PM »

Maybe we should discuss roundup ready alfalfa too???
« Last Edit: May 14, 2014, 10:35:20 PM by SidecarFlip »
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sammy

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Re: GMO's... Good or bad?
« Reply #94 on: May 14, 2014, 10:23:17 PM »

I don't eat alfalfa.
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SidecarFlip

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Re: GMO's... Good or bad?
« Reply #95 on: May 14, 2014, 10:32:44 PM »

I don't eat alfalfa.

Unless you are a vegetarian you sure do.  You most likely eat DDG  and you might be eating processed sewage as well....  Including GMO's if fed as a ration.

All points to ponder if you consume commercial beef, swine or polutry.

That meat you buy at the grocery was probably raised to market weight in a feedlot operation and could have consumed any or all the above 'ingredients'...... ;D

Even being a vegeterian don't mean you are exempt either.
« Last Edit: May 14, 2014, 10:34:25 PM by SidecarFlip »
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SidecarFlip

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Re: GMO's... Good or bad?
« Reply #96 on: May 14, 2014, 10:36:24 PM »

I really need to trade in this laptop and get a new one, the keyboard sucks.....  I apologize.
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livewire

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Re: GMO's... Good or bad?
« Reply #97 on: May 15, 2014, 07:28:50 AM »

Maybe we should discuss roundup ready alfalfa too???

It is just another GMO, and is very common across the country. 

There is absolutely nothing wrong with it.
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lilly

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Re: GMO's... Good or bad?
« Reply #98 on: May 18, 2014, 11:41:25 PM »

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livewire

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Re: GMO's... Good or bad?
« Reply #99 on: May 19, 2014, 07:52:20 AM »



A Democrat politician making a false claim about comments that a governmental organization received, about a COMPANY that has corrupted "the political process".

Yeah, I'll believe THAT.

Good Lord, liberals will believe anything.
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SidecarFlip

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Re: GMO's... Good or bad?
« Reply #100 on: May 19, 2014, 09:01:31 AM »

Dennis is an idiot and always has been.  He does have a hot old lady though.

At least he didn't run for President last time around thought he mighr have actually been better......
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lilly

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Re: GMO's... Good or bad?
« Reply #101 on: May 19, 2014, 09:53:05 AM »

Voters in Washington state have already begun casting their ballots to decide whether to label genetically modified foods. The official vote on the initiative is on Nov. 5. Twenty-three other states are considering something similar. It’s a good time to ask whether labeling is a good idea — both in general and, in this case, in particular.

Washington’s initiative would require products made using genetic engineering to clearly declare as much in a visible place — that is, a “front of the box” label. It has been in the news because it’s a case of direct democracy. Since voters rather than legislators are choosing, the debate has taken place in the media, in the form of both journalism and advertising. The ad buys have been massive on both sides — but bogglingly more massive from those campaigning against the measure.

There are good arguments against labeling: It fails to identify a genuine hazard, it could drive up prices, and it may reduce consumer choice. These are all legitimate complaints, and I agree with them, in the main. Then there are the complaints specific to the Washington law: There are better solutions, it’s imperfectly written, it will use taxpayer money, and it could lead to frivolous lawsuits. Again, I agree.

I’ll address these points in greater detail below. Nonetheless, I support labeling. You might ask: Huh?

For me, it all comes down to transparency, but not for the same reasons repeated ad infinitum in this fight. People have the right to know what’s in their food, the argument goes; but that only takes us so far. Access to information is only relevant when that information can be put to use. How would knowledge of transgenic ingredients be useful? Well, it would be useful to know about GM ingredients if they end up being hazardous — but after reviewing the evidence, I’ve come to think that’s highly unlikely.

There’s another way, however, that this kind of transparency would be useful: It could help heal the rift of misunderstanding and mistrust between food producer and food consumer. It might not provide information that would allow an individual to make better choices at a grocery store, but it would provide precisely the sort of information needed to span this divide. And that would allow all of us to make better food policy choices.

In a famous paper on risk perception, published in Science in 1987, Paul Slovic pointed out that people judge voluntary, controllable actions as much less risky than those that are involuntary and out of their control. Similarly, people see the unknown as much more risky than the known. Genetically engineered foods are, for most people, both unknown and uncontrollable.

There’s a simple, almost magical, solution to both these problems: labeling. Labeling makes the unknown known; it puts people in control of what is currently uncontrollable. It removes dread fear from the debate. Once GM food is labeled, the risk that people ascribe to it should drop precipitously. People see voluntary hazards (like skiing) as 1,000 times more acceptable than hazards they are forced to accept, Slovic wrote.

If the rhetoric and emotions surrounding this issue cooled off we could begin a reasoned and overdue discussion about what tools we want to use to meet the agricultural challenges of the future. We haven’t had that discussion, largely because city-folk haven’t been interested in agriculture for much of the last half century. Now that’s changed: City people want to know everything about the food we eat.

Farmers, aggies, and plant scientists are understandably perplexed by this. “We’ve been doing all sorts of crazy **** to your food for the last 50 years,” I imagine them complaining. “All you ever say is, ‘Cheaper please!’  And now all of a sudden you’re all worked up about this one tiny thing we’re doing called genetic engineering. Snap out of it! You’re being irrational!”

It’s true that we’re being irrational, in one sense. If we were approaching labeling with purely rational motivations, GMOs would be fairly low on our list of concerns. First, we’d be looking to label foods produced with the herbicide paraquat, or grain made via mutation breeding (a method more likely to cause unintended consequences than genetic engineering).

But in another sense, it’s perfectly reasonable to protest when you lose trust in the people you’ve deputized to procure your food. And it’s perfectly reasonable to attach that protest to something that already has some political momentum, like the backlash against GM food.

For most people, I suspect, GMOs are a metaphor — a stand-in for of all that is vaguely frightening in our food system. People attach their mistrust of agribusiness and fear of the unknown to this metaphor. So let’s defuse the metaphor: We can disarm the emotional and political triggers in GM food by labeling it.

Once you detach the fear of unknown technology we can directly address the fear of corporate oligarchy. That, I think, is a legitimate fear. There are real problems with the consolidation of our crop innovation into just a few big companies: Group think and patent thickets can hinder innovation. Big businesses tend to be less responsive to the needs of their customers. And corporate consolidation yields a consolidation of the money needed to conduct democracy by the dollar. For all these reasons, people might want to use the GMO label to avoid these companies’ products, or even boycott them –  that’s the other side of democracy by the dollar.

Those are the arguments for labeling, but is that enough to outweigh the arguments against? Let’s look at those in a little more detail.

Labeling GM food fails to identify a genuine hazard.

I think that the actual hazard associated with the GM foods is somewhere between negligible and non-existent. But that’s the point: Labeling would help people let go of their inflated perceptions of risk.

But it’s confusing! People will assume GM food is bad if they see what looks like a warning label.

Nah. We have other examples where the government has required a label that can be interpreted subjectively: Orange juice has to be labeled “Fresh,” or “From Concentrate”; foods are labeled by their country of origin; farmed fish in Washington must be marked as such. None of these labels has caused panic.

Labeling will drive up prices.

I thought this piece hit the nail on the head: Yes, some prices will surely go up as food processors replace commodity ingredients with non-GM variants, but the original, commodity food should continue to be available as well.

Oh really? Just look at Europe, where it’s harder to get GM foods.

I’m not sure which way the arrow of causality points here. Much of Europe has both labeling and less GM food because attitudes there are different. But this does give me pause. Labeling might not be worth it if it has to be financed by charging the poor higher food prices.

But this Washington law is bad, and there are better solutions.

You could just create a new app that tells people what’s in each food. Or you could come up with a better way of labeling, or you could address the actual problem rather than the metaphor. To these points, I say, “Great! Go do it.” But these aren’t reasons to oppose the law on their own. Politics is hard work. It’s all very well to spout off what seems like a better idea from your armchair, but it’s very hard to make these things actually happen.

OK, but this particular law says weird things.

True, there is some odd, misleading verbiage in the Washington bill about GM food causing problems. For example: “The genetic engineering of plants and animals is an imprecise process and often causes unintended consequences.” This is not exactly false, but not really true either. It’s a matter of scientific debate if GE is any less precise than normal breeding. In some ways it’s more precise. But that language is just the preamble (section 1). It’s not legally binding, and I have no problem ignoring it.

The law will drain the public coffers.

Washington estimates that it will take more than five employees working full time to administer the law by 2015. This gives me pause as well. It’s not all that much money relative to the state budget, but I can think of better uses. Still, if it cools the debate and helps us begin a reasoned discussion about what we really want in a sustainable food system, it will have been money well spent.

This will lead to frivolous lawsuits.

I take this concern very seriously — I’d hate to hurt small businesses and assist in lawyer shakedowns. This proposition contains some of the same language on enforcement as California’s Prop 65, which requires businesses to post warnings about chemicals. That law generated enough bad lawsuits that the legislature recently revised it. But Washington’s law is critically different because it doesn’t award damages to lawyers. There’s still the chance the lawyers could use the law to harass businesses, but there’s not the same incentive.

The movement to label foods is a natural outgrowth of consumers demanding to know what they are eating. In response, growers should be saying, finally! For years, by demanding nothing but lower prices, customers have squeezed some farmers out of business and pushed others to focus on yield to the exclusion of all else. It’s a predicament that serves neither the eaters nor the producers of food.

This is a chance to get together and close this gulf. This is a chance to talk honestly about what we value, and what we’re willing to pay for, in our food.

http://grist.org/food/gmo-labeling-trick-or-treat/
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lilly

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Re: GMO's... Good or bad?
« Reply #102 on: May 19, 2014, 10:04:46 AM »

Are GMO Foods Safe?

To put it bluntly, no one can really answer that question. Monsanto, the corporation that owns patents on many GMO seeds, assures us that these foods are harmless and points to studies – many of which the company has conducted itself – demonstrating that. These studies, however, have been widely criticized for their obvious bias, and I agree with those assessments. The Monsanto studies only prove that data can be manipulated, not that the products are safe. So, without high-quality, objective information, the debate quickly turns into a he said/she said standoff, leaving us with more questions than answers.

Meanwhile, although these foods are being sold in the U.S., GMO foods are either banned or severely limited throughout much of Europe, including the United Kingdom, Spain, Italy, France, and Germany. And a long list of other countries are following suit, including Japan, China and Brazil. In fact, Monsanto has virtually stopped lobbying for GMO planting in Europe due to low demand by farmers and consumers.

Here is another concern: Monsanto has spent millions of dollars defeating legislation in states like California that would have required foods containing GMOs to be labeled. In addition, a recently passed Farm Assurance law, commonly referred to as the “Monsanto Protection Act”, essentially grandfathers farmers’ rights to utilize existing planting of GMO seeds and plants, even if we learn at a later date that these products have serious health consequences.

The company’s unwillingness to allow labeling and the fact that the Monsanto Protection Act has become law – in spite of a tremendous number of consumers who petitioned the government to veto the bill – certainly does not give me confidence that these foods are safe to consume. In fact, it suggests the company has something to hide. And Monsanto’s apparent “profits before people” attitude shows the reckless disregard the company has for consumers.

Meanwhile, the shocking outcome of a European study with lab animals has created even more questions. Rats in the study that were fed a popular GM corn developed horrifically oversized tumors and organ damage. That study has been widely criticized. But so have studies done by the industry showing that GMOs are safe.

The fact remains that there are no long-term studies demonstrating that GMO foods are healthy – or unhealthy. But given the results of studies I’ve seen, I avoid GMO products whenever possible for myself and my family, and I recommend that you do the same.

http://www.newportnaturalhealth.com/2013/07/gmos-the-pros-cons-of-genetically-modified-food/
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eriemermaid

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Re: GMO's... Good or bad?
« Reply #103 on: May 19, 2014, 10:47:21 AM »

If GMo's are harmless, what is the problem in having a label on the product?  What are they so afraid of?
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livewire

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Re: GMO's... Good or bad?
« Reply #104 on: May 19, 2014, 04:21:35 PM »

If GMo's are harmless, what is the problem in having a label on the product?  What are they so afraid of?

I really don't think there is a "problem", exactly, other than the cost, which I think is ridiculously unnecessary.

The article Lilly posted (up three posts) is a good one, actually.  It makes some very good points. 

That said, personally I think most people that are against labeling are of the opinion that they KNOW GMO's aren't bad, and they see labeling as a waste.  A waste of money, as well as being uninformative, since there is no risk, and the fact that MOST food items will end up having the label put on them. 

What good does a "label" do, if it doesn't identify any risks, and it is on almost all products?  It's like a label on clothing that says, "These clothes contain cloth", or a label on cars that says, "This vehicle burns gas".

It's just silly.

It would be more informative to require labels on foods that contain NO GMO's.

That list would be a tiny fraction of the size of foods that DO contain GMO's, and would be much easier to regulate.
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