Thursday, August 26, 2010

What's "around" S 510?

by Wondering about Basics

Vandana Shiva calls "food safety" the Law of Food Fascism and says it's never about what's in the food (whether it is actually safe) but always about what's around it (how big is the oven, what material is used for flooring the kitchen, what paperwork has been filled out, ...).

Why not apply the same to S 510, the Food Modernization Act? Rather than ask what is in S 510, why not ask what is "around" it?

Here are some questions:

Who is in charge of "food safety" at the FDA now? Michael Taylor, Monsanto lawyer and VP.

Was Michael Taylor, Monsanto lawyer and VP, approved by the Senate? No. Obama bypassed Senate approval and made him a "Food Safety Czar."

Was Michael Taylor, Monsanto lawyer and VP, ever at the FDA before? Yes. Bill Clinton put him there.

What did Michael Taylor, Monsanto lawyer and VP, do while he was at the FDA before? He got Monsanto's rBGH (a genetically engineered bovine growth hormone) approved over the objections of scientists there, and he kept milk containing it unlabeled so know could know it was there, though it is associated with a seven times increased risk of breast cancer, a four times increased risk of prostate cancer and an increased risk of colon cancer, though the FDA is supposed to keep food safe. He also deregulated the approval of genetically engineered seeds, central to Monsanto's business.

Did Clinton do anything else to help Monsanto besides letting Michael Taylor, Monsanto lawyer and VP, introduce the most radically altered food in the history of mankind into the American diet and then keep those changes unlabeled? Yes.

Árpád Pusztai (8 September 1930) is a Hungarian-born protein scientist who has spent most of his career, from 1968-1998, at the Rowett Research Institute in Aberdeen, Scotland. He is considered the world's foremost expert on plant lectins, and is the author of 270 papers and three books on the subject.[1][2]

In 1998 Pusztai publicly announced that the results of his research show eating genetically modified potato causes harm to rats, leading to his dismissal from the institute. ....
Rowett Institute's director Philip James, who had initially supported Pusztai, suspended him and used misconduct procedures to seize the data. His annual contract was not renewed and Pusztai, his wife and a colleague, Susan Bardocz were banned from speaking publicly. Phone calls to his office were diverted and his research team was disbanded.[7]

After it was revealed that James had received two phone calls from the Prime Minister's office before implementing the ban, supporters claimed that James had come under pressure from 10 Downing Street to "put the lid on" Pusztai. Later a senior Rowett manager claimed Bill Clinton had telephoned Tony Blair and told him to sort out the problem. Although James denied the calls ever took place, Professor Robert Orskov OBE, who worked at the Rowett for 33 years and is one of Britain's leading nutrition experts, claimed he was told that the phone calls went from Monsanto Company, the American firm which produces 90% of the world's GM food, to Clinton to Blair. "Clinton rang Blair and Blair rang James - you better keep that man (Pusztai) shut up. James didn't know what to do. Instead of telling him to keep his mouth shut, they should have told him to say it needs more work. But there is no doubt that he was pushed by Blair to do something."[6][8]

Who first proposed a powerful, centralized "food safety" agency (S 510, and other bills)? Hillary Clinton, as part of her presidential platform.

Does Hillary Clinton have any connections to Monsanto? Yes. Through her work for the Rose Law firm, through her campaign advisor, Mark Penn who is CEO of Burson Marsteller, a giant PR firm that represents Monsanto, through Stanley Greenberg who polled for Bill Clinton and represents Monsanto as a client, through Bill's connections to Monsanto lobbyist Carol Tucker Foreman, including around his own "food safety" bill - HACCP - and in her connection to Monsanto lobbyists.

Who designed the "food safety" bills which are now in Congress? The same man whom Clinton put at the FDA in the 1990s, the same man at the FDA now - Michael Taylor, Monsanto lawyer and VP.

Who is likely to be appointed as "the Administrator" of the powerful, centralized agency the bill would set up? Michael Taylor, Monsanto lawyer and VP.

Who is backing the "food safety" bills? Winrock International [which] receives financial support from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, the Rockefeller Brothers Fund, the Rockefeller Foundation, the DOE, USAID, the US Department of State, the USDA, the World Bank, the FAO, SYSCO and the Tides Foundation. Winrock International also has long-standing ties with Monsanto.

How good has the FDA been in protecting American food? Abysmal? Horrendous? Shiv Chopra, a food safety expert, says American and Canadian food are the most toxic of all food in the world. Ignoring its central duty to test for their safety before allowing anything into the food chain, the FDA has allowed in antibiotics, hormones, slaughterhouse waste, pesticides and GMOs. In the years since their introduction, studies now prove they are dangerous to human health (three are banned outright in Europe and the other two are under consideration). But the FDA still has done nothing to stop them and, now, despite public outrage at deaths and the dangers to human health from antibiotics in animals, the FDA is attempting to ensure their continued use.

What has Michael Taylor, Monsanto lawyer and VP, done in relation to small farmers whom many say could be intentionally driven out of business by S 510? Michael Taylor, Monsanto lawyer and VP, wrote a white paper for Monsanto on how to sue them for honestly labeling their milk as rBGH-free. And under Mr. Taylor, the FDA is attacking raw milk dairy farmers across the country.

Does Monsanto have a history of harm to small farmers? Yes. To many, many, many small farmers.

Is the FDA known for its integrity? No. Not at all.

Is Monsanto knowns for its integrity? No. Not at all.

Does the FDA already have power to do whatever it wants? Yes. The FDA "food safety" division under Michael Taylor, Monsanto lawyer and VP, says they do not have enough power to enforce recalls at corporate facilities though there is no evidence they have tried and failed, and when it comes to little organic coops buying from local farmers and to natural health people, they have been using weapons and Interpol.

Does the FDA "food safety" division under Michael Taylor, Monsanto lawyer and VP, believe that the American people deserve safe food for themselves and their families, support the relationship between small farmers and the public, and recognize Americans have a right to their health? Apparently not. When small farmers recently sued the FDA for banning raw milk in interstate commerce as unconstitutional, the FDA "food safety" division under Michael Taylor, Monsanto lawyer and VP, asserted in court that:

  • "There is no absolute right to consume or feed children any particular food."
  • "There is no 'deeply rooted' historical tradition of unfettered access to foods of all kinds."
  • "Plaintiffs' assertion of a 'fundamental right to their own bodily and physical health ... is similarly unavailing
  • ... because plaintiffs do not have a fundamental right to obtain any food they wish."
  • "There is no fundamental right to freedom of contract."

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