GMO-A-GOGO

This is the third time I’ve posted on the subject of GMO crops. I’m not a scientist (duh) and most of my readers are not, either. Thus, wading through the contradicting claims of pro-GMO and anti-GMO factions has been a task similar to the kind of homework assignments I loathed as a kid. That said, here’s what I’ve come to believe so far, based on the numerous papers, articles, and studies I’ve read, all of which were sent by readers of this blog. It is a fraction of the literature available and by no means complete, so I’ve come to these conclusions based on a combination of the admittedly small amount of reading I’ve done and my own process of critical thinking. Read for yourself and make up your own mind.

1. The preponderance of scientists with knowledge in these areas appear (to me) to believe that the process of genetically modifying crops and the modified crops currently on the market are safe. They’ve come to this conclusion because the preponderance of evidence and studies show no deleterious effects to health or the environment. The studies and papers used to come to this conclusion have been peer-reviewed and published by reputable scientific journals and the like. In general, I do not trust corporations but I do trust scientists over activists. (Even though most of my friends are activists and I am often called one myself.) That said, you must keep in mind that you can always find some scientists who will discredit anything. A few years ago a reader was regularly sending me articles by a couple of well-lettered scientists who regularly make arguments against evolution and for creationism. That’s their right, but it isn’t science. The fact that you can never get everyone to agree on a topic is why the scientific community has historically used general consensus and peer review as a method of determining the truth. This, to me, seems the best we can do in any question of science or technology.

2. The anti-GMO papers and articles I’ve read have been rigorously defended by non-scientists and equally rigorously attacked by scientists for being rife with small amounts of cherry-picked, non-peer-reviewed or even unpublished studies that have been discredited by the scientific community as a whole. That doesn’t necessarily mean there isn’t some truth in what they say, but it does mean that what they are passing off as scientific evidence of the harmful effects of GMO crops does not meet the standards of science.

3. Everyone hates Monsanto.

4. Lots of people object to the fact that Monsanto manufactures GMO seeds to make money. That, for me, is not enough evidence to say that the products are dangerous. Antibiotics are manufactured for profit, but I’m still going to use Neosporin on my cuts.

5. I do not trust Monsanto, almost no average person does. But I don’t trust pharmaceutical companies either, yet I take advantage of their medical advances. Yes, I’d like to keep a close eye on them. No, I don’t think that everything they touch is inherently evil just because they make obscene profits from them.

5. Various sources have reported that there are a lot of suicides by farmers in India as a result of the bad business practices of Monsanto, the failure of the seeds sold by them, and that this is a huge problem that has not previously existed. I’m certain at this point that all of these claims are utterly false. Here’s why: The crop primarily in question is called Bt cotton. It has been sold in India for a decade and has done so well that over 95% of all cotton in India is now from Bt seeds. The reason farmers have overwhelmingly chosen Bt cotton in India is because it has raised crop yields and profits by huge margins. In short, it works, as advertised. On occasion drought and other factors have killed Bt crops (as well as everything else) and people have used this to point a finger at GMO crops. These crops were not designed to defeat severe drought, which will kill any kind of cotton. For cultural reasons (presumably) suicide is an alarmingly common practice in India and has been for ages. There are nearly 200,000 suicides per year in India and farmers have consistently made up only about 15% of those. There seems not to be a substantial rise in the rate of farmers committing suicide that is not also reflected in the suicide rate of the overall population. These facts appear to me to be indisputable. Here are two excellent and credible (published and peer reviewed) sources with lots of juicy graphs to show both cotton yield and suicide rates.

http://environmentportal.in/files/file/Failure%20of%20Bt%20Cotton.pdf

http://www.ifpri.org/sites/default/files/publications/ifpridp00808.pdf

6. Labeling GMO products seems like a good idea and in keeping with the general principle that consumers deserve to know what they are eating. Many people assume that if Monsanto is trying to fight these labels in court, they must have something to hide. From what I can tell, the reason Monsanto and others are fighting this in court is that so much fear and suspicion has been created by opponents of GMO that these labels may effectively destroy the market for these products. From a business perspective I can understand their concern. If the scientific community agrees that there is no real danger but the public ignorantly believes otherwise, is it fair to mark them with a scarlet letter? If someone somehow convinced the public that reading Bizarro cartoons causes brain cancer, even though the vast majority of neurologists and oncologists disagreed vehemently, would I fight against my work being labeled with a “Could Cause Cancer” banner?  Certainly.  Though I’m still on the fence about this point, I think at present I favor labeling because I favor consumer knowledge and choice. But part of that knowledge should be whether these crops are actually dangerous or if it is only fear-based hype.

7. Genetic bioengineering sounds scary. And it can very easily be made to sound even scarier. But virtually any new science or technology can. There was a time when cutting a person open and removing a tumor was condemned as “playing god”. The practice must have sounded ghoulish and horrifying to people of the time. I can only imagine the kinds of fears people had when someone began conducting brain surgery. Microwave ovens were thought to make food radioactive and dangerous to eat. There are people who still believe that, even after decades of common use. Until a new science becomes common, it is often seen as the stuff of which horror films are made. But as a being capable of rational thought, I try to base my decision on the general consensus of experts. Yes, they can be wrong, too. But they know a hell of a lot more about science and medicine than I do.

Since you are also a rational being, you should educate yourself and make up your mind, too. As trusting as I am of the experts I’ve read in this context, I must admit that I may be a little skittish about eating GMO corn before it has been around a while and I get used to seeing it. I’ve got my careful side, too, I guess.

Thanks again to everyone from both sides of this debate for your comments and links.

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48 thoughts on “GMO-A-GOGO

  1. Pingback: GMO-A-GOGO « Humor

  2. I have found this series of posts strange to behold. It’s cool that you’re so willing to engage your readership that you would even consider three posts on the same controversial subject just to keep the air clear. In my book you get major points for making the effort to do the research and making the effort to express your understanding in a clear and straightforward manner. Good on ya!

    On the other hand, it’s not particularly funny, or fun… As you, yourself, said, “loathed.”

    Not that it’s your job to baby-sit my emotional state…

    Anyway, thanks! I’m looking forward to the next installment of odd originality that I’ve come to rely on from your humorous mind. ;)

  3. This kind of deep and thoughtful analysis is not what I’d expect from a vegetarian but is one of the reason I only get my news from bizarro comics. Thanks for doing the thinking for me, it’s so much easier. Seriously though, nice post. Very interesting and insightful.

  4. I’ve enjoyed your discussion (and even more so all of your cartoons) on genetically modified crops. I tend to agree with your conclusions. I have a background in chemistry, though I haven’t worked in the field for a long time – just helps me to understand the science articles. :)

    The biggest problem that I’ve seen with GMOs was while I was living in Africa (lived there for 20 years). When a large agro-business had planted GMO wheat or corn and the pollen had blown into neighboring fields of small farmers – in Africa meaning families with less than an acre and using non-mechanical techniques quite often – Monsanto (and I believe some others) wanted these farmers to pay fees for then having genetically modified crops, even though it had come through the wind. To be honest, I’m not sure how it turned out, but I do remember reading local news about the arguments. It was pretty damn heartless!!

    • Thanks for the links, Emma. I would like to mention that––apart from the issue of whether or not the information on these sites is valid––the organizations that run these websites are activist organizations, as opposed to mainstream science. In general, I’m more likely to believe the New England Journal of Medicine than I am a group of doctors who have a specific mission. I’m not saying the information there isn’t valid, I’m saying it isn’t a credible source for unbiased science.

    • what a bunch of white-wash cocksucking,you should be investigating the latest research of EU researcher’s that shows how dangerous it is,from a continent that has outlawed it.Just say “Tens of Thousands of Suicides” not because of yield,but because the farmers somehow never got the info. that Roundup would be necessary to bring the crop to fruition,and if you don’t know Roundup

      kills worms and soil organism’s. Why don’t you tell people how safe nano-particles are,it’s in thousands of USA foods,sauces,cosmetics,lotion,going down the drain joining 300 plus other posions in the water supply.

      The lastest finding on infertility and GMO’s shows that the reproductive

      organs of todays 3rd generation since GMO introduction has been compromised.3rd generation of GMO fed rats are sterile.

      So how many people would be buying labeled GMO’s?just the people who watch FOX news.

      • “but because the farmers somehow never got the info. that Roundup would be necessary to bring the crop to fruition”

        This is a completely insane claim. Not just a little bit insane, but completely round the bend insane. The crop planted in India is Bt cotton, the transgene it contains codes for an insecticidal protein from a bacterium, if one were to spray roundup on these plants it’d do exactly what most plants do – and die, the cotton used in India isn’t roundup-ready (there are RR cottons out there, but India doesn’t use them (at least not to any great extent – as far as I know they don’t at all, but I’m frequently wrong on the tiny meaningless details which don’t actually subtract a damn thing from the point))

  5. Glad to see you’re being open-minded and rational about this – there has been a lot of nonsense spread on both sides of the issue. The only point I think you missed covering was mono-culture – in general, it is a bad thing when everybody is using one strain of a crop. The world’s food supply controlled by a few multinational giant corporations and just a few types of hybrid (non-replicating) seed is scary – we need flexibility to combat unknown future dangers. This isn’t an argument specifically against genetic engineering, but it’s tied to the same forces. Giant companies are not necessarily working in our interests, and giving them all the power is probably not too smart.

  6. OMG you are going to be (already have been) deluged by all the Kool-Aid drinkers out there that don’t want to educate themselves on any topic.

  7. I’ll make the argument that point #6 is invalidated by your previous arguments in other blog posts that gene splicing is essentially similar to any other form of genetic selection, eg. selective breeding. It seems to me that it wouldn’t be fair to demand a special label for GMO compared with any other one of a thousand details that goes into making food, including where it’s grown, its breeding history, what types of fertilizers and pesticides were used, or whether it was shipped by truck or train.

    That said, it does make sense to exclude GMO food from having a USDA Organic label, which is more of a bonus reward for following certain arbitrary guidelines. As far as I know, Organic food is based on cultural prejudices and not specifically scientific advantages.

  8. What he said. I do find it creepy that Monsanto somehow ‘makes’ seeds that can only be used once, that don’t generate newer seeds of their own. That seems pretty unnatural. And if some of their zombie seed get blown by the wind onto the guy next door’s field (who hasn’t bought monsanto) they sue him for stealing their seeds. Sue him into bankruptcy. Or maybe that’s one of those false stories, I haven’t ‘snoped’ it yet…By the way, Bizarro could ONLY come from a brain that’s been damaged. Ipso facto, quid pro quo, mens sana in corpore sano, etc.

    • (L)SD – that isn’t the case though, terminator technology, as it is generally dubbed, isn’t used commercially. It rears its head in the debate essentially because it sounds ooga booga scary and paints an ugly picture. Although for the life of me I can’t quite figure out why. If there is a problem with a GM trait spreading outside of its field it would appear the best way to prevent this would be a mechanism which causes offspring of this plant to be sterile – in which case drift isn’t a problem – you can’t steal (or accidentally receive) and propagate a plant which is infertile.

  9. “skittish about eating GMO corn before it has been around a while” — Do you think 16 years are “a while”? If so, you can go ahead and eat GM corn. (Which in all likelihood you have done already anyway as most corn is GM and derived products are used as ingredients in many, many food products and beverages…) I for one have eaten lots – and with the second mouth that has grown out of my neck over the last years I can now eat even more ;-) Or stop, should the second mouth perhaps be the result of the mutant crops I have eaten, which are not GM but the products of mutation breeding, and which nobody talks or cares about? Anyway, given that GM Bt corn protects the crops better from insect attacks, GM corn is actually less likely to be contaminated with carcinogenic toxic fungi that like to settle on damaged corn, so by eating GM corn I reduce the likelihood of getting cancer. Cool.

  10. Dan,

    Great post, thanks! The things I like best about this post has nothing to do with the topic of GMO. It’s that you really grok and exhibit the tools of critical thinking that so few understand. Especially this quote: “…you must keep in mind that you can always find some scientists who will discredit anything.” Which is why scientific consensus is important. Less chance for bias.

    I think my labeling comment got stuck in the other thread but yeah, I think it’s a total ploy. I would be thrilled for consumers to become more educated on the subject but no label will do that. If people are serious about consumer education they would add an educational component to that proposal. If companies are forced to put labels then maybe they would make attempts of education outreach. Or maybe they would ditch an important technology setting ag back. As an animal rights activist myself I’ll take any tool to spare suffering and I see value in this technology to do that. People who don’t want GMOs can buy their precious Organic or non-GMO voluntary labeled foods and the rest of us can get on with better ways.

    As for Monsanto, some of the scary stories I was led to believe I found out to be highly exaggerated. Now everything I hear I’m biased to be suspicious of. If they really were that bad then I would hope people would stop crying wolf. I’d like to know if there really WAS a wolf. That’s the insidious part about that. If you think everyone hates Monsanto, you need a wider circle of friends.

    Anyway, now go draw moar fucking cartoons! :)

  11. First:

    (L)SD said: “I do find it creepy that Monsanto somehow ‘makes’ seeds that can only be used once, that don’t generate newer seeds of their own. That seems pretty unnatural.”

    This is no different than hybrid seeds: You buy them, you plant, you harvest, and you have to buy fresh seeds next year. SO F_ING WHAT? If you’re referring to the so-called “Terminator,” you’re falling for utter bullshit.

    Continuing: “And if some of their zombie seed get blown by the wind onto the guy next door’s field (who hasn’t bought monsanto) they sue him for stealing their seeds. Sue him into bankruptcy. Or maybe that’s one of those false stories, I haven’t ‘snoped’ it yet…”

    DO “snoped” before you open your hole about such stuff. All you do is continue to spread myths. The poor farmer anti-GMO people cite will be Percy Schmeiser, who was found FRICKING GUILTY in a Canadian court of patent infringement. Look it up: He sprayed Roundup on his crop and ended up with over 90% RR ready canola. That doesn’t happen via “zombie seed blown by the wind.”

    Now, what I really wanted to say:

    Mr. Piraro, from what I can tell, you are a cartoonist (I’d never heard of you before; I linked here through Biofortified). And yet you have managed to wade through the shit like a trooper and come up with a very reasonable conclusion about GMOs.

    I am utter impressed and ever a little jealous. I’m a disillusioned former-organic gardener and farmer who de-converted about three years ago and have since come to admire the whole GM thing as one of those awesome advances we’ve made that makes being alive today a privilege.

    I’m also a small farmer and have no access to GM products. That’s my one gripe: It’s all about helping the big guys. I wish a GM potato would come onto the market that had stacked resistance to blight and Colorado potato beetle, because I fricking hate spraying all the time: Potatoes are not a big cash crop for a small CSA farmer, but you want some on hand because they’re nice to put into people’s boxes.

    I’m rambling. Good day.

  12. One of the arguments against mandatory labeling is that it would actually remove consumer choice. What’s happened in countries that have instituted mandatory GMO labeling laws (like England) is that corporations got paranoid about the possibility of losing money by trying to sell products with labels that might give the impression that something was wrong with them. GMO’s became scarce, and with them went the consumer’s option of purchasing them.

    http://www.agbioforum.org/v6n12/v6n12a13-carter.htm

  13. I have few words about the labeling controversy.

    I think it is clear that most of the people who want a “contains GMO” label want it so that they can avoid GMO food. Almost none of them want the label so that they can seek it out. In other words, a vendor can get extra sales from a “GMO-free” label and will lose sales with a “contains GMO” label.

    Therefore, if you look around in the supermarkets you will find some foods labeled “GMO-free” (or the equivalent, “organic”). You will not kind any foods labeled “contains GMO”. That’s the status now. People who want GMO-free food can easily find it. The calls for labeling GMO food come from people who want a compulsory “contains GMO” and are not satisfied with a voluntary “GMO-free” label. It isn’t clear why the “GMO-free” label is not enough.

    Note that the two labels are not equivalent information in the sense that food is either GMO-free or contains GMO. There’s a third category, food for which the vendor sourced his food based on other criteria, such as cost or quality. So either the vendor who labels “GMO-free” or the vendor who labels “contains GMO” will have extra costs – he has to take extra care to be sure that the label is accurate.

    But the “GMO-free” vendor gets extra sales in exchange for the extra cost. The “contains GMO” vendor does not.

    So who pays the extra cost? Obviously it should be the people who want the information. As things are now, with voluntary labels, that’s how things are. With a compulsory “contains GMO” label, the people who want the information are the people who will not buy the product, so the cost is passed on to the people who don’t care about the information. That’s just not fair.

    There are all sorts of analogous label issues. Unless there’s a very good reason, we usually rely on the voluntary label, the one that attracts the customers who want the feature. We see some food labeled Kosher, none labeled non-Kosher. We see some food labeled organic, none labeled non-organic. We see some products with a Union label, none with a non-Union label. No tuna cans say “dolphin-dangerous”. Nobody labels coffee “not decaffeinated”. The major exceptions are when there is a well documented safety hazard, like a food containing peanuts.

    Labeling proponents should explain why the voluntary labels we have now are not good enough.

  14. My guess is that the majority of comments made here are written by urban dwellers. One should come out to the country where it is grown and see for themselves the changes, take note of the micro-climates being created and REALLY talk to the farmer slaves who grow nothing but GMO corn and soybeans.

    As for eating GMO corn, one can’t. Fact. GMO corn needs to be first modified before human consumation or we are unable to derive any nutrient from it. We are not talking Jolly Green Giant Sweet Corn here.

    Come on out – I’d love to give you a tour. It may change any positive aspects you may hold on GMO any crop for your lifetime.

    Smith – surrounded by crops that feed no one other than beef cattle and corn fructose addicts.

    • “As for eating GMO corn, one can’t”

      Not true, most would be totally unpalatable (as it is field corn, and not sweet corn, but this is not an issue of GMO but simply of corn in general).

      Also, Bt sweet corn is… exactly like “Jolly Green Giant Sweet Corn” – you can pluck it right of the plant and eat it, this is, unsurprisingly, because it is a modified sweet corn (or at least, as far as I understand, a sweet corn that has had the transgene bred in from field corn) and not a field corn, and therefore doesn’t taste absolutely bloody horrible. (seriously, don’t expect to just go out and eat any kind of corn, most of it is appalling, because it ain’t sweet)

  15. Not to keep this un-funny thread going, but the poor lab rats in this study look like the bug eyed rodent eared Moe in your GMO cartoon.

    note: the study is from the science-y types you prefer, but I’ve included the activist site to as they “biggerized” (as you would say) the photos

    http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0278691512005637

    “new study published in the journal Food and Chemical Toxicology, researchers from The Committee for Research & Independent Information on Genetic Engineering (CRIIGEN) reported on the results of a 2-year feeding study in rats given either NK603 Roundup-tolerant genetically modified maize, cultivated with or without Roundup, and Roundup alone, at levels permitted in drinking water and GM crops in the United States.

    The authors of the study pointed out that currently no regulatory authority requires mandatory chronic animal feeding studies to be performed for edible GMOs and formulated pesticides, and the only 90-day feeding trials were conducted by the biotech industry.

    This study, therefore, was performed in light of this need, and the results were an unprecedented confirmation of the cancer-causing effects of GM food and agrichemicals”

    http://www.activistpost.com/2012/09/new-study-finds-gm-corn-and-roundup.html

  16. Published on Wednesday, September 19, 2012 by Common Dreams Study Finds Tumors in Rats Fed Monsanto GM Corn

    Controversial data prompt’s EU agricultural vice-chairman Bove to call for Euro wide suspension of GMOs

    – Common Dreams staff

    A new study released Wednesday by a team of scientists in France claims to have discovered a noticeable increase in tumors and kidney disease in lab rats that have been fed GMO foods produced by big ag corporation Monsanto.

    A variety of genetically modified ccorn (AFP/File, Eric Cabanis) The controversial study, which quickly came under fire from several GMO experts around the world, prompted France’s Jose Bove, vice-chairman of the European Parliament’s commission for agriculture and GMO opponent, to claim “the study finally shows we are right and that it is urgent to quickly review all GMO evaluation processes.”

    The study, published by the peer-reviewed journal Food and Chemical Toxicology and conducted by scientists at the University of Caen, said rats fed on a diet containing NK603, a seed variety made tolerant to Monsanto’s Roundup weedkiller, or given water with Roundup at levels permitted in the United States, died earlier than those on a standard diet.

    According to the data, rats on the GM diet developed mammary tumors, as well as severe liver and kidney damage.

    A scientific community has come out fighting against the study in defense of GMO products, saying the data is not trustworthy, and the scientists who conducted the study went on a “statistical fishing trip,” to prove their case.

    However, those already skeptical of the safety of genetically modified products, took the data as one more reason to be weary of GMO’s.

    California Right to Know, the group fighting for California’s Prop. 37 to require labeling of GMO foods, immediately released a statement:

    The results of this study are worrying. They underscore the importance of giving California families the right to know whether our food is genetically engineered, and to decide for ourselves whether we want to gamble with our health by eating GMO foods that have not been adequately studied and have not been proven safe.

    Genetically modified food production, a process which has been around for 15 years, has not been extensively tested for long term effects on consumer health, as well as for effects on top soil and overall effects on the environment.

    On Sunday, France’s Prime Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault had announced that France will continue its ban on Monsanto’s corn, the only GMO currently allowed in Europe.

    Following the release of the study on Wednesday, France’s agricultural vice-chairman Bove called for an immediate suspension of all EU cultivation and import authorizations of GM crops. “National and European food security agencies must carry out new studies financed by public funding to guarantee healthy food for European consumers,” he said in his statement.

    .

    • william w, you are pretty quick their to jump aboard any single study. If this study was to be found false would it change your mind? Unlikely. Please follow Dan’s example and look to the experts on this issue and with an open objective mind. This is a matter of science, technology and the possibility of helping a lot of Earthlings who are suffering right now.

      This is why this study is wrong on a meta level: Vegans Gloat Over Rat Tumors

      and here’s a collection of articles on this study in particular: Séralini Rat Study Links

  17. Excellent well thought out post!

    Just a couple of extra factoids:

    Genes aren’t anywhere near as immutable and integral as people think (including many scientists). Invaders can incorporate themselves, genes can be swapped between organisms, geneticists are only just now figuring out that all the “junk” in dna can actually control gene expression.

    So the scary prospect is what happens when weeds incorporate weed-killer mods from the gmo’s.

    A more practical problem is simple “warning-burnout,” messages everywhere lead to messages ignored. Like that “check engine” light.

    http://www.utsandiego.com/news/2012/sep/06/tp-junk-bits-of-dna-seen-to-play-key-role/

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Transformation_%28genetics%29

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A37992-2004Nov9.html

  18. I have a hard time expressing how grateful I am for your insight on this issue. It’s difficult to cut through all the scare-mongering and political hqiz, or to have a productive discussion with someone who is willing to look at both sides of the issue. The fact that I have always considered you a “liberal’s liberal” makes your opinion all the more valuable to me. The references you have provided make good reading. Thanks again.

    • I’ve not watched the link you left yet, so I can’t speak to that specifically, but the thing you have to remember is that anything you read or watch can be biased by things other than pure scientific fact. Unless you’re reading a peer-reviewed, published scientific paper, there is undoubtedly going to be a certain amount of embellishment one way or the other, to support the person or group’s stance.

  19. I find it odd to comment with that advice without first determining the content of the link I provided. Please do not assume I am that simple mined. Yes, I realize everyone can have an angle. Unfortunately, “Pure scientific fact” is only as pure as the people involved with it. Scientists are not immune to greed, intimidation and ignorance. Check out the Buzynski documentary on YouTube, or the dvd “Cut Poison Burn”. Research Dr. Max Gerson or Otto Warburg. Science and fact don’t always prevail when big money is involved.

    • That’s why I try to stick to peer-reviewed journals. It is very difficult to persuade the entire staff of a magazine and all of their contributors to risk their reputations for a few bucks. One could go as far as to say it would be impossible. This is a system that historically has worked very well exposing scientists who’ve been “bought” or are just doing sloppy work.

      Unfortunately, there is no such process among activists. I consider myself an activist, know many personally and consider them friends. From an insider’s view, I’ve seen a LOT of exaggeration that can’t stand up to scrutiny. It isn’t “evil,” it’s just human nature.

      Here is a website run by respected scientists who discredit Jeffrey Smith rather thoroughly. You may not believe what it says, but keep in mind that it is peer-reviewed, so many scientists have reviewed the information and found it to be valid. All of the scientists involved have a professional stake in the accuracy of it. In Smith’s case, it’s just his word against many. http://academicsreview.org/reviewed-individuals/jeffrey-smith/

      It is worth mentioning, I think, that Smith also believes he is levitating when he hops up and down while meditating.

      GMO plants may well prove to be harmful, but Jeffrey Smith is not a valid person to be getting information from. That much is pretty clear.

  20. Your reliance on peer-reviewed journals makes perfect sense, and there was a time when I would have believed those publications to be the final word. But when I explored the history of cancer treatment in the US, I learned that money, power and influence have interfered with scientific proof and potential cures time and time again.

    I also once believed the FDA’s goal was to protect the people from harmful products and the USDA’s goal was to help ensure we eat healthy food. I even thought the American Cancer Society wanted to stop cancer! Boy, was I wrong.

    I guess it is about who you trust. I tend to trust the real people (parents, farmers, etc)who have had personal experience (yes, frequently dismissed as “anecdotal”) and who have little to gain for speaking out. I tend not to trust huge corporations with a history of implementing the use of toxic chemicals and calling them safe.

    I truly appreciate how you handle your thoughts on this matter. What it boils down to for me is that if Monsanto is not hiding anything, then they should be proud of their technologies and put out their proof of safety studies and efficacy studies for all to see. I’m sure their bank account can handle the loss of any remaining suspicious consumers.

    Thank you for the exchange of information! And please remember to check out the Burzynski documentary on YouTube, particularly if your life has been touched by cancer in some way.

  21. Hi Dan – Your art is amazing. And your diligence on the matter of GMOs is refreshing to see. I highly recommend you read this article, it’s as good as they come on the topic: http://earthopensource.org/index.php/reports/58

    I believe that what GMOs represent to our current generation, is what smoking represented to our Baby Boomers… as late as 1960, R.J. Reynolds was telling us that “More Doctors smoke Camels than any other cigarette.”

    Makes you think…

  22. Pingback: Vegans & GMO | Vegan GMO

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