This issue is a bundle of issues, but they affect us all.
One of the things I see at the heart of this is that it is unethical at any level to patent life forms. Monsanto is one of many companies riding the surge of opportunities that opened up when the U.S. ruled that life forms can be patented.
See article here: http://www.actionbioscience.org/genomic/crg.html#primer
DNA Patents Create Monopolies on Living Organisms
We need to have that overturned. Simply stated, those who own life forms can control life. It doesn't take a genius to understand that no one, no entity, should be able to patent genetic material and manipulate its availability to the world. Those who DO that control the food supply. They control medicine. They control healthcare. They control the ownership of body tissues, parts of the human genome, and ultimately humans.
If this sounds like science fiction, it is...or was until it was passed into law.
This HAS to be reversed NOW.
Monsanto is a case study on how out of hand this can get in our present history. It's not a far reach to imagine how this would be wielded in the hands of another Hitler. If you think it's that far of a stretch, just count back the years. The Nazis had their scientists, and their opportunities, too...and they did their jobs very very well. It' s not enough to tolerate the abuse of science, of scientists who breach the ethical simply BECAUSE THEY CAN. Anything can be touted as an impetus to "further research."
Let's NOT buy into the assumption that the end justifies the means.
I do not buy into the recent noise about the curing of our modern health plagues by use of mad science. We're simply trying to cure the symptoms and the consequences of what "modern science" thought as an improvement over the "old ways of doing things." When mass production and "modernization" sold the public the mindset that anything new was better, thousands of years of time-tested wisdom was summarily dismissed as antiquated and behind the times, and substituted with the tools of mass production and industrialization. It was progress! It was innovation! It was a revolution! It's produced a way of life that is anything but sustainable. It substituted chemically-altered substances for natural foods. It used food as a tool to manipulate the economy, crops that can be regulated for political purposes here and worldwide. It helped feed a push to get the entire family into the workplace in order to afford all the modern "conveniences" once thought to be luxuries, but now thought to be essentials. It created a disconnect of the public from any basic awareness of their food sources, and it is this ignorance upon which today's large corporations such as Monsanto are cashing in.
Just read the news articles on a basic Google search of the word Monsanto. Did you know Monsanto in the past has blatantly forged documents, repeatedly?? If they didn't have the evidence to support a "case," they made up the document and forged the signatures!
From this article http://www.nelsonfarm.net/issue.htm
Monsanto didn't have what it needed to take its case to court-- a document stating that he knew better than to save the seeds. So, company agents forged his signature -- even misspelling his name in the process -- on a technology agreement. The agents later admitted to forging (long prior to the lawsuit) his and many other farmers' signatures, Osman says.
In response to this document, which remains in the court record, Monsanto attorneys argue that there was an implied contract, he says. In other words, they say that it's common knowledge that Monsanto doesn’t allow growers to save its seeds. To prove this claim, they produced a grower redemption form stating that Stratemeyer had received free pesticide spraying on 50 acres. Problem was, it too was forged.
They have made face-to-face threats to small farmers and business owners accused of some breach of Monsanto SEED CONTROL. They trespass privately-owned lands to "gather evidence"...of what?? Of nature itself...doesn't ANYONE know that bees and other pollinators actually POLLINATE crops, which means the crossing of fence boundaries. Monsanto has the unmitigated gall of attacking farmers and accusing them of stealing PATENTED MATERIAL...i.e. Roundup-Ready "Monsanto seeds" because some bees cross-pollinated nearby crops.
WHY is this just a sideline issue in our news?? Why is it not on every front page?? Why is THIS not considered terrorism? This sort of an attack on the U.S. food supply is not considered some degree of "national security"???
I'm not minimizing what's going on in the world regarding terrorists who target human victims with blow-em-up weapons. I support sovereign nations' ability to defend themselves against attack.
Why, then, are we not fighting the forces INSIDE our country who would attack our food supply, our freedom to GROW A GARDEN, or to even have a free voice to protest such attacks. Did you know Monsanto has been strong-arming dairy farmers who advertized milk as being Bovine Growth Hormone-free?? They are still fighting to neutralize the verbage, demanding their share of "fair labeling." Monsanto is the creator of the Bovine Growth Hormone, and they are the drug pushers to our nation's cattle industry.
From the article at http://www.desmoinesregister.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080413/BUSINESS03/804130318/-1/LIFE04
One-third of the nation's dairy cattle continue to be in herds treated with the hormone, which goes by the trade name Posilac, according to Monsanto.
In another article entitlted: Don't Ask, Don't Tell: The Story We Weren't Allowed to Air, by Jane Akre http://www.purefood.org/rbgh/akrepart1.cfm#Don't%20Ask This article summarizes two journalists' firing by Fox News for reporting on this issue.
The truth is, only Monsanto really knows how many U.S. farmers are presently
using their recombinant bovine growth hormone (rBGH). The company
persistently refuses to release sales figures but claims it has now become
the largest-selling dairy animal drug in America. The chemical giant's
secretive operations were part of what made the story of rBGH such a
compelling one for me to explore as an investigative reporter.
There are many other issues besides the Bovine Growth Hormone and Genetically altered seed control...issues such as anti-trust violations, Agent Orange VA benefit denials, false reporting of public health risks and suppression of accurate information, and those are just to name a few.
My purpose in including these on this site is not to slander a business, but to raise awareness about what I believe to be issues that impact ALL U.S. consumers. At risk is our current generation, and our children.
It's not hard to start reading about any of these...they're as close as a basic Google search!
Here is a link for more information about Monsanto-related concerns. And here is their page where you can send a fax to Monsanto itself protesting specific unethical practices.
Ok, here's a reposting of the French documentary. If it successfully loads, it's about an hour and a half long, and worth every minute of watching. It may take a few minutes to load, but if you have any problem viewing it, you can go to their page to view it here