Thursday, July 24th, 2014

Polluted America

Paul Craig Roberts
Institute for Political Economy
February 25th, 2013
Reader Views: 737

pollution

In the United States everything is polluted.

Democracy is polluted with special interests and corrupt politicians.

Accountability is polluted with executive branch exemptions from law and the Constitution and with special legal privileges for corporations, such as the Supreme Court given right to corporations to purchase American elections.

The Constitution is polluted with corrupt legal interpretations from the Bush and Obama regimes that have turned constitutional prohibitions into executive branch rights, transforming law from a shield of the people into a weapon in the hands of government.

Waters are polluted with toxic waste spills, oil spills, chemical fertilizer run-off with resulting red tides and dead zones, acid discharges from mining with resulting destructive algae such as prymnesium parvum, from toxic chemicals used in fracking and with methane that fracking releases into wells and aquifers, resulting in warnings to homeowners near to fracking operations to open their windows when showering.

The soil’s fertility is damaged, and crops require large quantities of chemical fertilizers. The soil is polluted with an endless array of toxic substances and now with glyphosate, the main element in Monsanto’s Roundup herbicide with which GMO crops are sprayed. Glyphosate now shows up in wells, streams and in rain.

Air is polluted with a variety of substances, and there are many large cities in which there are days when the young, the elderly, and those suffering with asthma are warned to remain indoors.

All of these costs are costs imposed on society and ordinary people by corporations that banked profits by not having to take the costs into account. This is the way in which unregulated capitalism works.

Our food itself is polluted with antibiotics, growth hormones, pesticides, and glyphosate.

Glyphosate might be the most dangerous development to date. Some scientists believe that glyphosate has the potential to wipe out our main grain crops and now that Obama’s Secretary of Agriculture, Thomas Vilsack, has approved genetically modified Roundup Ready alfalfa, maintaining sustainable animal herds for milk and meat could become impossible.

Alfalfa is the main forage crop for dairy and beef herds. Genetically modified alfalfa could be unsafe for animal feed, and animal products such as milk and meat could become unsafe for human consumption.

On January 17, 2011, Dr. Don Huber outlined the dangers of approving Roundup Ready alfalfa in a letter to Secretary of Agriculture Vilsack. Huber requested that approval be delayed until independent research could evaluate the risks. Vilsack ignored Huber’s letter and ten days later deregulated Roundup Ready alfalfa on January 27, thus accommodating Monsanto’s desire for monopoly profits that come from the company’s drive to control the seed supply of US and world agriculture by approving Roundup Ready alfalfa.

Who is Don Huber, and why is his letter important?

Huber is professor emeritus at Purdue University. He has been a plant pathologist and soil microbiologist for a half century. He has an international reputation as a leading authority. In the US military, he evaluated natural and manmade biological threats, such as germ warfare and disease outbreaks and retired with the rank of Colonel. For the USDA he coordinates the Emergent Diseases and Pathogens Committee. In other words, he is high up in his scientific profession.

You can read online what Huber told the Secretary of Agriculture. Briefly, the outcome of many years of Roundup Ready GMO corn and soybeans has been a decline in nutritional value, the outbreak of new plant diseases resulting in widespread crop failures, and severe reproductive problems in livestock, with some herds having a spontaneous abortion rate that is too high to maintain a profitable business.

Glyphosate is a powerful biocide. It harms beneficial soil organisms, altering the natural balance in the soil and reducing the disease resistance of crops, thus unleashing diseases that devastate corn, soybean, and wheat crops, and giving rise to a new pathogen associated with premature animal aging and infertility. These developments, Huber told the Agriculture Secretary, “are threatening the economic viability of both crop and animal producers.” The evidence seems to be real that genetically modified crops have lost their genetic resistance to diseases that never previously were threats.

There is evidence that the new pathogen is related to a rise in human infertility and is
likely having adverse effects on human health of which we are still uninformed. Like fluoride, glyphosate might enter our diet in a variety of ways. For example, the label on
a bottle of Vitamin D says, “Other ingredients: soybean oil, corn oil.”

Monsanto disputes Huber’s claims and got support for its position from the agricultural extension services of Iowa State and Ohio State universities. However, the question is whether these are independently funded services or corporate supported, and there is always the element of professional rivalry, especially for funding, which comes mainly from agribusiness.

The Purdue University extension service was more circumspect. On the one hand it admits that there is evidence that supports Huber’s claims: “The claim that herbicides, such as glyphosate, can make plants more susceptible to disease is not entirely without merit. Research has indicated that plants sprayed with glyphosate or other herbicides are more susceptible to many biological and physiological disorders (Babiker et al., 2011; Descalzo et al., 1996; Johal and Rahe, 1984; Larson et al., 2006; Means and Kremer, 2007; Sanogo et al., 2000; Smiley et al., 1992). . . . Although some research indicates there is an increase in disease severity on plants in the presence of glyphosate, it does NOT necessarily mean that there is an impact on yield.”

On the other hand, the Purdue extension service maintains its recommendation for “judicious glyphosate use for weed control.” However, one of Huber’s points is that weeds are developing Roundup resistance. Use has gone beyond the “judicious” level and as glyphosate builds up in soil, its adverse effects increase.

A submission to the Environmental Protection Agency by 26 university entomologists describes the constraints that agribusiness has put on the ability of independent scientists to conduct objective research. The submission, in which the scientists are afraid to reveal their names because of the threat of funding cutoffs, is included as an item in one of the bibliographical references below. Here is the statement:

“The names of the scientists have been withheld from the public docket because virtually all of us require cooperation from industry at some level to conduct our research. Statement: Technology/stewardship agreements required for the purchase of genetically modified seed explicitly prohibit research. These agreements inhibit public scientists from pursuing their mandated role on behalf of the public good unless the research is approved by industry. As a result of restricted access, no truly independent research can be legally conducted on many critical questions regarding the technology, its performance, its management implications, IRM, and its interactions with insect biology. Consequently, data flowing to an EPA Scientific Advisory Panel from the public sector is unduly limited.”

Monsanto is not only sufficiently powerful to prevent any research other than that which it purchases with its funding, but also Monsanto succeeded last year in blocking with money and propaganda the GMO labeling law in California. I would tell you to be careful what you eat as it can make you ill and infertile, but you can’t even find out what you are eating.

You live in America, which has “freedom and democracy” and “accountable” government and ”accountable” corporations. You don’t need to worry. The government and responsible corporations are taking good care of you. Especially Obama, Vilsack, and Monsanto.

Short bibliography:

http://fhr.branditimage.com/hot-topic-letter-to-us-secretary-of-agriculture/

http://www.fooddemocracynow.org/blog/

http://vimeo.com/22997532

http://www.greenpasture.org/utility/showArticle/

http://ourecovillage.org/2011/04/11/dr-hubers-cover-letter-to-secretary-vilsack/

http://www.gmwatch.org/latest-listing/51-2012/

http://www.non-gmoreport.com/articles/may10/

http://www.monsanto.com/newsviews/Pages/

http://www.foodandwaterwatch.org/blogs/

http://southeastfarmpress.com/resistant-pigweed-plagues-central-georgia-cotton

Delivered by The Daily Sheeple


Contributed by Paul Craig Roberts of Institute for Political Economy.

About Dr. Paul Craig Roberts

Paul Craig Roberts was Assistant Secretary of the Treasury for Economic Policy and associate editor of the Wall Street Journal. He was columnist for Business Week, Scripps Howard News Service, and Creators Syndicate. He has had many university appointments. His internet columns have attracted a worldwide following. Visit his web site at the Institute for Political Economy.

This article has been posted with permission from Dr. Paul Craig Roberts.

Copyright Paul Craig Roberts 2012.

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  • bowlan

    more liberal bull shit,they havent used landfills for years,.

  • http://T Evie

    Oh really, lots of people have their soils tested and find them loaded with toxins, previous chemical dumps.
    Pipelines are trying to be built on protected lands and peoples front yards.
    The politicans say this is good for the people.
    Enjoy your fracked, chemical cocktails.

  • Locus

    Some or all of this may be true… but America is also fortified with 100% of 12 essential vitamins and minerals.

    So eat hearty, live large and give doom and despair the day off.

    Cheer Up! Things may be getting worse at a slower rate.

  • Rick45

    We are not polluted, stop sounding like one of the communist. Who want EPA to send all jobs over seas because the air isn’t clean enough. Get a life writer. Back in the 40s every one lived longer and the air was dirtier. the writer is focusing on the wrong cause in this article.

  • Anonymous

    The Plastic Pacific Garbage Patch is proof landfills moving into the oceans now. U.S. dumps, ships, moves trash to China and Mexico. No landfills? Where is your trash then? It all goes somewhere. Scientific testing can prove the toxicity of soils, air, water (this is not liberal crap nor Agenda 21izing nor carbon tax scam propaganda, but real manufactured Geo Engineering/Weather Manipulation that is real destruction and behind ‘climate change’ – people living longer back in the ’40′s were not subjected to altered GMO foods, chemtrailing, cell tower, super wifi, mass consumerism and waste, and the chemicalization of foods, and so on.

  • GrandpaSpeaks

    The world now and what it is facing is a result of the power elite’s control of world banking for the last 300 years. They profit from war and it thusly keeps the people from threatening them. Yes, the world is a result of their secretive self-appointed manipulations and its worth is what we see and experience. However their cost to humanity is incalculable on any measure of what could have been. They have no mandate but their own. A mandate that is a literal dead end for the people. 300 years is about enough of that. Their worth to humanity is now the question. I think it’s time for them to go especially if they cause their own system to fail. They do not deserve to convene, direct and profit from any reform. Like the wealth sucking vampires they are. Exposure to the light may stop them as they do it to us, again. Calculations are that 40% of America’s collective wealth has transferred in the last 4 years so they are well on their way.
    I like the pollution analogy but a football game analogy may also be appropriate. During a deciding semifinal game at the Peoples home field with the game tied there is only time for one more play. Their punter has been injured kicking cans and for the people it is third and long. The ball has been hiked and it looks like a sack and time for the people to scramble. Can the people play ball? Yes, very well, the people have 130 million open receivers. The noise of 130 million receivers closing opens the field up to the end zone called freedom and is always a good last chance play. But we have to throw a block into that blue helmeted linebacker coming at us. Split the banker defenses and then we can continue. The clock has almost run out.

  • Baba Bombay Beetle from London

    This is rubbish LOL. We need to clean up our act. Take the trash out of our leadership then start with a clean slate. Polish up our act because cleanliness is next to Godliness. Allah be praised!

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