Who’s behind U.S. “food safety” bills?

Here’s an interesting personal history of the personalities who are attempting to bring America into a new era of so called “food safety”. This is excerpted from a much longer piece on the Farmwars blog titled “The 2009 Food ‘Safety’ Bills Harmonize Agribusiness Practices in Service of Corporate Global Governance“:

Will we be seeing signs like this across America in the years to come? Photo by Rose Atkinson via Pbase.com (picture is from Western Australia)

Will we be seeing signs like this across America in the years to come once new "food safety" bills become law? Photo is by Rose Atkinson via Pbase.com (She took this picture in Western Australia)

“……After a series of well-publicized cases of food contamination – E. coli-tainted meat, melamine-adulterated pet food and baby formula, salmonella-infected peanut butter – the public has been well primed to look toward Congress to fix a poorly funded and insufficiently staffed food safety inspection system.   And, right on cue, a crop of “food safety” bills gets dumped our way.  The most controversial and transformational of these pieces of legislation, Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro’s HR 875, can be traced directly to recommendations made by the Trust for America’s Health, a non-profit organization sponsored by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. 

The Trust for America’s Health has produced reports that serve as blueprints for a major restructuring of the agencies involved in overseeing food safety policy as well as eye-popping changes to the public health system.  Its recommendations also have also made their way into the other food safety bills that have been recently introduced in Congress: SB 425, the “Food Safety and Tracking Improving Act;” HR 814, the “Trace Act of 2009;” and HR 759, the “Food and Drug Administration Globalization Act of 2009.”  

While the vaguely worded HR 875 gives the appearance of being a reasonable attempt to fix the problems outlined, a close inspection of the blueprints on which they are based –and a bit of knowledge about the industry players who crafted them — reveals critical clues about how the public health system would be transformed for the benefit of biotech, pharmaceutical and agribusiness giants.   Non-profit foundations have long served as effective tools for corporate wealth to influence public policy, providing the means to guarantee outcomes that enrich corporations at the public’s expense.   The global pharmaceutical and consumer product company Johnson & Johnson’s tax-exempt foundation is no different. 

Tayloring the Message: The Trust for America’s Health

The public should familiarize itself with three key reports produced by The Trust for America’s Health: “Keeping America’s Food Safe: A Blueprint for Fixing the Food and Safety System at the US Department of Health and Human Services,”(1) “Fixing Food Safety: Protecting America’s Food Supply from Farm-to-Fork,”(2) and the “Blueprint for a Healthier America: Modernizing the Federal Public Health System to Focus on Prevention and Preparedness.”(3) 

President Obama’s nominee for Commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration Margaret Hamburg, MD, sits on the board of directors at the Trust for America’s Health.  Hamburg, a well-connected player in the public health field, also serves on the board of directors of the Rockefeller Foundation. Among other things, the Rockefeller’s vast fortune is responsible for funding foundations and institutes that spread unsafe genetically-engineered food crops around the world.(4)  Sadly, those who hoped that Obama’s election would herald positive changes have repeatedly found themselves duped: the deep corporate ties of his appointees guarantee a continuation of corporate control over the US government, a veritable concierge service on steroids for private interests.

A notable craftsman at the Trust for America’s Health is none other than the notorious Michael R. Taylor, JD.  Taylor penned a paper included as an appendix of “Keeping America Safe: A Blueprint for Fixing the Food Safety System at the Department of Health and Human Services” called “Restructuring Food Safety at HHS: Design and Implementation.”  In it, Taylor prescribes the creation of a new Food Safety Administration that consolidates all safety functions formerly performed by a host of other government regulatory agencies and institutes on a federal level the use of industry-friendly “risk assessment” methods.

Monsanto’s Jack of All Trades

Most people who know Michael Taylor’s name recall that he worked as Monsanto’s lawyer at King & Spalding for years before being appointed to the FDA to oversee the swift introduction into the marketplace of GMOs.  He did so by ramming through a faux scientific regulatory conceit called “substantial equivalence.”…”

Read the rest at Farmwars.com

And for more on the ramifications of the latest of these “Food Safety” bills, here’s an excerpt from the Food Freedom blog, from a post titled “Strange Martial Law via Food Control: HR2749″

“….NOT WHAT THE AMERICAN PEOPLE ORDERED – HR 2749, MARTIAL LAW AND THE ENSLAVEMENT OF THEIR FARMERS

By The Writers’ Collective

HR 2749 is a strange bill in many ways.  While the other “food safety” bills have been around since winter, allowing for much public discussion on the internet, HR 2749 has only suddenly appeared.  It is a mutant conglomeration of the worst of the other bills, with the addition of one very original part – martial law.

When it was a draft, it was Waxman’s bill.  But once given a number, it became Dingel’s who already had a “food safety” bill, HR 759.  So Waxman got none and Dingel got two.  (Was this because Waxman, being Jewish, was a hideous choice to introduce a bill with Codex in it – designed by the Nazi pharmaceutical companies that funded Hitler, provided the gas for the gas chambers, experimented on prisoners with vaccines – and is expected to kill millions?) 

* HR 2749 would give FDA the power to order a quarantine of a geographic area, including “prohibiting or restricting the movement of food or of any vehicle being used or that has been used to transport or hold such food within the geographic area.”  

[This – “that has been used to transport or hold such food” – would mean all cars that have ever brought groceries home or any pickup someone has eaten take-out in, so this means ALL TRANSPORTATION can be shut down under this.  This is using food as a cover for martial law.]  

Under this provision, farmers markets and local food sources could be shut down, even if they are not the source of the contamination.  The agency can halt all movement of all food in a geographic area.  

[This is also a means of total control over the population under the cover of food, and at any time.] See this DailyKos entry.

The bill is unusual, too, because slow as it was to appear. The little bugger of bill has made up for it since.  It got a number on June 10, went to committee on June 17, passed instantly, and is headed for a vote on the floor of the House.   

The first Patriot Act was passed using fear of terrorism. This Patriot Act is more coy, hiding under a cloak of “food safety” and but also using fear – fear of food contamination.  Evidently, Americans are supposed to be so frightened by the slightest possibility of a terrorist or of E-coli, they would trade away all their precious, hard fought freedoms for the promise of safety.  Or at least, that is what the trade-off has become.  “Terrorism” and “contamination” are great bugaboos used to open doors to an end to the US Constitution.  That is exactly what we are left with after those who wrote HR 2749 are done. ….”

Read the rest here on FoodFreedom.wordpress.com

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