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polarbear4

Behind a Corporate Monster: How Monsanto Pushes Agricultural Domination

Below are just a couple of the sub-topics that the article covers.

Monsanto insists that GM technology and Roundup are safe, yet the independent studies that have been done point to the opposite.

The widespread use of Roundup Ready GM crops since 1996 has corresponded with a dramatic rise in illnesses such as coeliac disease, gluten intolerance, Alzheimer’s disease and diabetes. Cause is hard to prove, but the damage that Roundup does to intestinal microbiology has significantly decreased bodily and immune system function, according to Dr Don Huber, making it a likely factor in the disorders.

Glyphosate is also patented as an antibiotic, not just a herbicide. In the US, almost all processed foods contain GM soy and/or corn products (80%). People living in areas of intensively cultivated GM soy in Argentina are twice as likely to die of cancer. Levels of glyphosate in urine in the US are 10 times the levels of people in Europe.

The glowing promises of GM Bollgard cotton in India have had disastrous results. The crops did not perform well in the monsoon conditions of wet and dry, the fibre was shorter and brought a lower price, the seeds cost four times as much as non-GM, and pests proliferated. Non-GM seeds became unavailable as local suppliers only stocked Bollgard, with the support of state governments.

The resulting indebtedness has caused many farmer suicides — 296,400 cotton farmers took their lives in 20 years (often by drinking Roundup). …

Flooding the Market

Monsanto promised that GM and non-GM crops could co-exist. The reality is that GM genes spread far and wide through cross pollination by bees and wind. All canola seeds in Canada, including non-GM seeds, have GM genes, which has eliminated organic canola growing.

Indeed, this was the goal of Monsanto, as Don Westfall, a consultant to biotech companies, said in 2001: “The hope of the industry is that over time the market is so flooded that there’s nothing you can do about it. You just sort of surrender.”

Benny

I’m watching the Comey/Rogers hearing , re: Russia Hacking, Wiretapping claims. Opening statements, Ranking member Schiff got a longer one. If the chronology bears out that Schiff is laying out, Donna Brazile, John Podesta, and the DNC have to quit denying the hackers “changed” the documents and the messages were fake, and don’t absolve them of an abysmal campaign, not to mention putting their thumbs on the scale against the Sanders campaign. We’ll find out if Trump staffers were complicit with Russian intelligence (maybe).

I’ll live blog here for awhile as time permits.

Benny

Comey makes it clear that FBI has authority from DOJ about the Russian hacking and most of the work is classified, thus he may not be able to comment publicly, as the investigation is still ongoing. He says he can’t offer a timetable when the investigation will be completed.

Twitter seems to indicate that Comey is investigating Trump and his staff at the moment.

Benny

NSA director Rogers gets the first question. Did Russia hacked election machines and therefore the tallies in MI, PA, and WI. Rogers says NSA is not really the best source of this info as it is not domestic, but the intelligence he has seen doesn’t indicate it. Comey concurs.

Now there are questions about FISA 702. It ensures that one has to go to a judge (specifically a FISA judge) to get permission for wiretapping certain individuals. Incidental collecting is when a US person is part of the conversation with a foreign target. “US person” is defined broadly and could be a ship, a corporation, a policy maker, etc. However, the US person is masked when reporting, so it is generalized, thus it is designated as “US person 1” etc. There are exceptions to this rule, however.

Benny

Rep Gowdy, “Mr. Bengazi”, is now going after Comey about possible leaks repeated in WaPo & NYT concerning wiretaps. Comey confirms that it is against the law to leak classified information. However, it doesn’t get too far. The R’s in general are not taking a lot of time for asking questions. The Dems are asking more of them.

Rep Schiff is now asking about Trump’s tweets accusing Obama of wiretapping his residence. Comey says the FBI has no information that POTUS44 requested electronic surveillance or supports those tweets. Furthermore, it would have to go through a FISA judge. No POTUS could authorize those wiretaps without a judge.

Director Rogers was asked if NSA was asked to wiretap Trump Tower? Rogers says no, nor did NSA ask the British to wiretap Trump.

(I expect Trump’s tiny hands to be busy after those comments).

Benny

Questions about Podesta e-mail hacking and Roger Stone’s knowledge of it (related to Wikileaks)–the collusion or coordination between US persons (Trump campaign) and Russia. Comey says he cannot comment on it, which means it’s still under investigation.

jcitybone

https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2017/mar/20/fbi-director-comey-confirms-investigation-trump-russia?CMP=twt_gu

The ranking Democrat on the committee, Adam Schiff, used his 15-minute opening statement to outline a prosecutorial case laying out all the known or reported contacts between members of the Trump campaign team and Russian officials, most of which had been denied by the Trump camp.

“Is it possible that all of these events and reports are completely unrelated, and nothing more than an entirely unhappy coincidence?” Schiff asked. “Yes, it is possible. But it is also possible, maybe more than possible, that they are not coincidental, not disconnected and not unrelated, and that the Russians used the same techniques to corrupt US persons that they have employed in Europe and elsewhere. We simply don’t know, not yet, and we owe it to the country to find out.”

If Trump or his people cooperated with Russia’s so-called “active measures”, Schiff said, “It would represent one of the most shocking betrayals of democracy in history … The stakes are nothing less than the future of our democracy, and of liberal democracy.”

jcitybone

http://www.slate.com/blogs/the_slatest/2017/03/20/republicans_what_about_michael_flynn_though.html

The big headline from Monday’s House Intelligence Committee hearing is that FBI Director James Comey confirmed the existence of an ongoing investigation into potential connections between Donald Trump’s campaign and Russian intelligence. This is a bad headline for the Republicans on the committee, because Donald Trump is a Republican. So they are earnestly trying to pretend that the hearing is actually about the inappropriateness of leaking classified information to the press, specifically the information that was leaked to the Washington Post about what U.S. surveillance had uncovered about former national security adviser Michael Flynn’s pre-inauguration contact with Sergey Kislyak, the Russian ambassador to the United States.

What none of these gentlemen are mentioning, of course, is that the surveillance leaks revealed that Flynn had lied when he denied having discussed U.S. sanctions against Russia with Kislyak on the day that those sanctions were announced by the Obama administration. Such a conversation, having taken place while Flynn was still technically a private citizen, might have violated U.S. law, which could be why he’d lied about it in the first place, and he resigned. Since resigning, he’s become involved in a second foreign influence scandal, this one covering paid lobbying work he did on behalf of the Turkish government through a front company while he was advising Trump on matters of national security.

So, yeah, Trey Gowdy and the other Republicans aren’t asking about that stuff.

Benny

Former Clinton campaign staffers feign frustration about Russia preferring Trump over Clinton.

From Politico:

Noting that Comey said it is “correct” to say that Russia preferred Trump to Clinton in the election, former Clinton communications staffer Tyrone Gayle, now the press secretary for California Sen. Kamala Harris, wrote, “That sound you just heard was every ex-Clinton staffer banging their heads on the wall from California to DC.”

http://www.politico.com/story/2017/03/james-comey-russia-hearing-clinton-campaign-reaction-236262

Gee, whenever Berniecrats noted that the thumb was on the scale for Clinton and got proof of it thanks to wikileaks, denials still ensued:

The following night, Clinton and primary rival Sen. Bernie Sanders, D-Vt. were asked questions about the lead poisoning in Flint, although that exact question was not asked.

In another email, dated Mar. 12, she passed on to Palmieri a question on the death penalty set to be asked in a Mar. 13 town hall and said: “From time to time I get the questions in advance.” After Palmieri responded, Brazile wrote back: “I’ll send a few more.”

However, in an interview with Fox News on Oct. 19, Brazile denied helping Clinton during the primaries. She said she was being persecuted and questioned the credibility of the hacked files.

“As a Christian woman, I understand persecution, but I will not sit here and be persecuted,” Brazile said. “Your information is totally false.”

http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2017/03/17/brazile-admits-forwarded-debate-questions-to-clinton-camp.html

Then she admits she did forward the questions.

Sigh.

humphrey

If Donna had a Pinocchio type nose it would be quite lengthy!

comment image

Oh I almost forgot!

““As a Christian woman, I understand persecution, but I will not sit here and be persecuted,” Brazile said. “Your information is totally false.”

That makes everything OK!

polarbear4

understanding various groups’ persecution makes everything the Dems do OK!

we’re having an election for DPO chair (I can’t vote, b/c I’m not a chair of a district or other pcp elected at our county reorg, and several of our pcps that we elected specifically on the Berniecrat slate are voting for the establishment Dem. They foisted her on the party only after they knew our guy was running and somehow got Merkley to endorse. GRRRRRRRRRRR!

Although of course I want them to vote their conscience, if they were going to go for the Hill side of the equation, they shouldn’t have run as a Berner. Disappointed that Merkley caved, too.

humphrey

That is assuming that they have a conscience!

Many will say whatever it takes to get elected. Once there it is a completely different story.

wi59

Some sell their soul pretty fast once their “in”

polarbear4

i still love ’em and think that they’re more those techno types that love “experience” over passion. and i think they hardened their positions more after several people got mad.

hoping that next time they go for the passionate Berner over more experience. establishment will always have more “experience.”

There’s a sort of split among the Berners–those that think that they agree with a lot of what Hill stands for, and those that are still mad at the whole Hill thing and are ready to Bern up the Party!!!! :O)

I get that I want to be reasonable and friendly, b/c otherwise people just get more entrenched in their “side,” but I also want to stay strong in the reasons I’m even here still.

Nice to have a place like this where I can vent, although I suppose I should invite more of this crowd on over and keep my local musings to myself after I do. :O)

polarbear4

Yes, and she said she’s not sorry about it, too.

humphrey

Oh My! The Land of the Free and the Home of the Brave.

http://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-airlines-electronics-idUSKBN16R2JN?utm_campaign=trueAnthem:+Trending+Content&utm_content=58d0520e04d3012d7248950b&utm_medium=trueAnthem&utm_source=twitter

U.S. authorities are planning to ban passengers traveling on certain U.S.-bound foreign airline flights from carrying on larger electronic devices in response to an unspecified terrorism threat, a U.S. government official told Reuters.

The official said no American carriers are impacted by the ban, which would involve devices larger than a cell phone. The new rule is expected to be announced on Tuesday by the Homeland Security Department and cover about a dozen foreign carriers.

I wonder if this will pass the Court test?

humphrey

I came across this article and finally someone seems to get IT.

https://www.jacobinmag.com/2017/03/trump-pelosi-clinton-resistance-movement-russia-maddow/

Democratic elites are delusional — you can’t subdue the reactionary right without a robust alternative political vision.

For some time now, this view of the political divide — Democrats are consummate pragmatists, Republicans are rigid slaves to dogma — has predominated in elite liberal circles. Hillary Clinton, after all, centered her campaign on competence and experience far more than any actual conception of politics.

And despite the resulting disaster, this desire to have a politics without politics — this strategy to build a coalition bereft of any clear values or principles — has continued to animate liberals’ opposition to Trump. Democrats really believe, it seems, that they can subdue the reactionary right without articulating any alternative political vision beyond prudent governance.

I only included a few excerpts. The article is surely worth a read in its entirety

polarbear4

thanks, humphrey!

humphrey

Sure is very kind of Big Oil. I am sure there is no alternative reasoning.

humphrey

I have no idea how much it will help but it surely won’t hurt.

humphrey

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