What should I be doing instead of this?
by Chelsea Spata 05.23.2013
Posted In: Environment at 12:30 PM | Permalink | Comments (3)
march against monsanto

Cincinnati March Against Monsanto to Take Place Saturday

Part of worldwide series of protests scheduled for 1 p.m. at Piatt Park

“It’s time to take back our food,” boasts the Facebook page for the first ever March Against Monsanto, a worldwide protest movement aimed at speaking out against genetically modified organisms (GMOs). The march, being held on six continents and in 36 countries, will take place this Saturday. Cincinnati is one of 250 cities slated to host marchers this weekend. Monsanto, a large corporation with a self-described focus of “producing more, conserving more and improving lives," focuses on innovation in agricultural production and claims to have “an eye on the future.” Included in their Sustainable Yield Initiative of 2008 are the benefits of biotechnology, or the genetic modification of farmed products. The March Against Monsanto will be held to combat this process, as well as other practices like Monsanto’s efforts to overturn European Union regulation on obligatory labeling. The march’s primary organizer, Tami Monroe Canal, says she started the movement because she was concerned for her daughters’ lives. “I feel Monsanto threatens their generation’s health, fertility and longevity,” she explains. “I couldn’t sit by idly, waiting for someone else to do something.” A precursor meeting announcement for the Cincinnati march emphasizes that this movement is not a “fist waving” event. Says the Cincinnati organizer Dana Haan, “It is a peaceful yet assertive demonstration in which we evoke public awareness of what is happening with Monsanto and our food and the future of it.” Organizers throughout the United States are calling on participants to bring handouts that explain GMO processes in fact form, with “no slandering, no opinions or paper — just facts.” March participants are striving to prove that the genetic modification of foods is more detrimental than beneficial to individual health, citing studies conducted on GMOs that suggest the presence of pesticides in some modified products, as well as evidence that consumption of GMOs leads to cancer, infertility and birth defects. With more than 100,000 likes on Facebook and an event list ranging from Boulder, Colo., to Cairo, Egypt, support for the March Against Monsanto has skyrocketed since its inception in February of this year. Advocating not only an end to GMOs but also various solutions for achieving this goal, March leaders assert that they will continue to expose Monsanto’s secrets, “taking to the streets to show the world and Monsanto that we won’t take these injustices quietly.”The Cincinnati march will take place at Piatt Park at 1 p.m. For more information, visit the MAM Facebook page or the MAM website.Correction: This story originally gave the wrong location and time in the sub-headline.
by Danny Cross 02.16.2012
monsanto lede

Monsanto Is Pissing a Lot of People Off

You poison one little French farmer and all hell breaks loose. Giant chemical-maker Monsanto yesterday announced it plans to appeal a Monday ruling that one of its herbicides in 2004 poisoned French farmer Paul Francois, who says inhaling a Monsanto weedkiller led to “memory loss, headaches and stammering”(coincidentally, these are the same symptoms of the accidental hangover™). In addition to the French farmer being pissed enough at the company for giving him a hangover when he was trying to work his farmland, there are about a million other people officially declaring themselves as against Monsanto via “Millions Against Monsanto,” an organic consumers association that campaigns for “health, justice, sustainability, peace and democracy.” If you accept the possibility of Monsanto obstructing even a majority of these five concepts, it’s easy to believe the company has enemies from a lot of different backgrounds. That’s why Monday’s ruling by a French court finding Monsanto legally responsible for poisoning Francois and ordering it to compensate him has enlivened a bunch of angry activists. Millions Against Monsanto offers a wealth of content documenting the agricultural biotechnology corporation’s government ties, tendencies to take small dairies to court, refusal to compensate veterans for Agent Orange and getting their nasty chemicals in normal people’s water supplies. (Wikipedia is hilariously filled with references to things like dumping toxic waste in the UK, Indonesian bribing convictions and fines for false advertising.) Even 'ol boy Obama has gotten caught up in the mix with charts like this one circulating on Facebook: The latest news out of Millions Against Monsanto is the moving forward of a California ballot initiative to require mandatory GMO labeling that polls show has 80 percent support. According to the site:"A win for the California Initiative would be a huge blow to biotech and a huge victory for food activists. Monsanto and their minions have billions invested in GMOs and they are willing to spend millions to defeat this initiative. California is the 8th largest economy in the world. Labeling laws in CA will affect packaging and ingredient decisions nation-wide. The bill has been carefully written to ensure that it will not increase costs to consumers or producers." Back in France, our friendly farmer will have to wait a while for whatever compensation poisoning amounts to, as Monsanto says it will appeal the ruling. According to The Washington Post: Monsanto spokesman Tom Helscher says the company does not think there is “sufficient data” to demonstrate a link between the use of Lasso herbicide and the symptoms Francois reported. "We do not agree any injury was accidentally caused nor did the company intentionally permit injury," Helscher said. "Lasso herbicide was ... successfully used by farmers on millions of hectares around the world."
by Danny Cross 02.16.2012
at 12:15 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)

Speaking of Global Biotechnology Corporation PR Troubles…

‘Mr. Show’ clip demonstrates corporate frustrations over operating a terrible company

It has to be difficult writing press releases defending corporations’ PR challenges when dealing with such dubious commodities as chemically enhanced foods, cigarettes, alcohol, the occasional toy that rips little kids’ hair out but doesn’t get recalled because it’s too attractive to kids at the point-of-sale, etc. Reminds us of a Mr. Show clip where GloboChem executives receive an earful from a new advertising duo, who get the CEO’s attention by explaining that the company has an image problem: “The perception is that this company is a beast, a monster, a cold heartless, smelly behemoth, run by a greedy fat, fat-headed fattypants — a fatso.” The CEO’s response? “Who do you think you are? This company cares! We were in the people business when you were in short pants. My great, great, great grandfather started this company with one single, rickety, leaky, handcrafted, slave ship and a simple motto: people selling people — to people. So don’t tell me that I’m fat!”The execs eventually come around to the idea of a new mascot: Pit Pat, the @font-face { font-family: "MS 明朝"; }@font-face { font-family: "Cambria Math"; }@font-face { font-family: "Cambria"; }p.MsoNormal, li.MsoNormal, div.MsoNormal { margin: 0in 0in 0.0001pt; font-size: 12pt; font-family: Cambria; }.MsoChpDefault { font-family: Cambria; }div.WordSection1 { page: WordSection1; }"magical pansexual nonthreatening spokes-thing." Mr. Show was an awesome sketch comedy on HBO from 1995-98 featuring David Cross (Dr. Tobias Fünke in Arrested Development) and Bob Odenkirk (a bunch of really funny stuff).

Food (Inc.) for Thought

Robert Kenner's documentary investigates the corporate takeover of America's food supply

0 Comments · Wednesday, July 8, 2009
The American food industry is now controlled by a handful of large corporations with one goal above all else: making money. Robert Kenner's incisive, warning-shot documentary, 'Food, Inc.,' investigates the ways in which these corporations have changed our food system in recent years and the impact this rapid evolution has had on the industry's various components. Kenner speaks with CityBeat about his film.