Tag Archives: Obama

When governments abandon the public interest — look out for your own health

From Helke Ferrie, in Vitality Magazine:

Our Constitution guarantees that the laws, from which our government derives its mandate, shall work in the “public interest.” In actuality, this mandate is mostly an experience of illusion for the public, because the government and its agencies prove to be chronically delusional. The difference between an illusion and a delusion is that an illusion is a misconception, sometimes based on deception; illusions are correctable through reality checks. A delusion, on the other hand, refers to a belief maintained despite contradictory proof. Delusional views and policies refuse to be confused by the facts.[1] Shedding illusions is the first step towards eliminating delusions. True, this is hard slogging, often painful, extremely frustrating, but unfailingly liberating. So, here we go! Continue reading

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Obama rejects raw milk petition

From Bill Marler’s Food Safety News:

“The Obama administration delivered its official response last week to the 6,078 signors of a petition on WhiteHouse.gov who requested federal-level legalization of all raw milk sales. The response indicated that the White House continues to support the current regulation of raw milk sales, which allow states to determine legality but prohibits its sale across state lines.

 The response was written by Doug McKalip, White House senior policy adviser for rural affairs, who said the administration recognizes the importance of letting consumers control their own food choices. The 143 illness outbreaks associated with raw milk since 1987, however, underscore the dangers of its consumption. Continue reading

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Resisting the corporate theft of seeds

From Vandana Shiva in The Nation:

President Barack Obama's administration has been investigating monopoly concentration in the seed business for over two years. But when the President spoke on the steps of the Seed Savers Exchange, an independent seed company, he didn't mention that inquiry once. Nor did he talk about business concentration in other areas of agriculture, despite hearings held by his Department of Justice all over rural America. Photo: The White House. The photo relates to the second story in this post.

“We are in a food emergency. Speculation and diversion of food to biofuel has contributed to an uncontrolled price rise, adding more to the billion already denied their right to food. Industrial agriculture is pushing species to extinction through the use of toxic chemicals that kill our bees and butterflies, our earthworms and soil organisms that create soil fertility. Plant and animal varieties are disappearing as monocultures displace biodiversity. Industrial, globalized agriculture is responsible for 40 percent of greenhouse gases, which then destabilize agriculture by causing climate chaos, creating new threats to food security. Continue reading

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The latest on “Food Safety” Bill S-510

David E. Gumpert, of the Complete Patient blog, recently posted this followup on the progress of Bill S-510 towards becoming law:

Picture via Bill Marler's blog.

I swear, you have to be a parliamentary expert to figure out what’s happening with the so-called food safety legislation, S 510. But in a nutshell, it’s very close to passage in the U.S. Senate. When that happens, the Senate version will go to the House, which previously passed a similar version, and then to President Obama, who has committed himself to signing whatever Congress passes on food safety. The pressure is on to pass this thing now, in a lame-duck session with holdovers already voted out of office, since the new Congress may well be less inclined to sanction the kind of broad clampdown on rights this legislation includes, not to mention the budgetary strains of hiring a new army of food inspectors. Continue reading

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Saul Alinsky’s “Rules for Radicals”

Saul Alinsky, photo via Wikipedia

Saul Alinsky died in 1972, just a few months after Playboy magazine published a twelve part series of interviews with the man who had been one of America’s most successful political activists. From the end of those Playboy interviews:

“PLAYBOY: Having accepted your own mortality, do you believe in any kind of afterlife?

ALINSKY: Sometimes it seems to me that the question people should ask is not “Is there life after death?” but “Is there life after birth?” I don’t know whether there’s anything after this or not. I haven’t seen the evidence one way or the other and I don’t think anybody else has either. But I do know that man’s obsession with the question comes out of his stubborn refusal to face up to his own mortality. Let’s say that if there is an afterlife, and I have anything to say about it, I will unreservedly choose to go to hell. Continue reading

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David E. Gumpert asks: “Is the Obama administration about to eat the foodies’ lunch?”

This article by David E. Gumpert, from  from Grist.org, is the most accessible introduction we’ve yet seen to the issues raised by the current U.S. food safety legislation (S-510 etc.). Here’s an excerpt:

Foodies are a growing demographic. See pic credit at bottom

“These are heady times for foodies—you know, the people who love farmers markets and community supported agriculture (CSAs), and hate Big Ag. They’ve turned the documentary movies “Food Inc.” and “Fresh!” into big hits. And they’ve turned “Slow food” into a generic term (there actually is an organization by that name that boasts more than 100,000 members in 132 countries).

A seeming army of foodie bloggers (of which I am one) sees the hand of Big Ag’s pesticides and feedlot practices (Monsanto, Con Ag, Tyson, etc.) in the explosive growth of chronic disease, and genetically modified food. It’s a neat good-guy/bad-guy scenario, with only one wild card: Is the U.S. government with or against the foodies? Continue reading

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