Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Monsanto Seeks Further Protection from Congress

This post, Gentle Readers, is a bit of a system test. Some of you want and need the information...and I want to see how well this format works in the current version of Chrome and Blogger. The folks at Food Democracy Now invited everybody to share and repost this e-mail, with its fancy graphic, so here it is.

If you click on the links you can sign a petition to your U.S. Senators and the President, which is recommended. You can even send money to Food Democracy Now, which is recommended only after you've funded this project:

http://igg.me/at/frugalgraciouslivingchallenge/x/997637

...But really, what are we trying to do here? The U.S. Senate need to know where we stand. They already have that information. Big Money is being used to counterbalance that information. We don't have that kind of money ourselves, and might not send it to a nonprofit organization online if we did--we're talking billions of dollars. But we do have leverage over that kind of money...if we think about it.

Monsanto is bioengineering things that are being sold and used as food, although the evidence is increasing that they're not fit for human consumption (and, some say, they don't even burn very well). The chemicals dumped onto these things are doing a limited amount of harm by direct contact or as airborne vapors, but relatively few people are exposed to them in those ways. The "Frankenfoods" are doing harm when we eat them as food. Very few of us are going into the vegetable garden to pick an ear of E. coli corn (which is what this web site intends to call the GMO corn that gives me celiac sprue, until Monsanto at least has the decency to give it a brand name of its own--it is in fact made by splicing in DNA from bacteria that cause "acute food poisoning"). We are ingesting E. coli corn in the forms of corn starch, "modified corn starch," "modified food starch," corn syrup, etc., added to commercially processed food. If we stop buying those foods, and notify the food manufacturers that we've stopped buying them, (a) we'll feel better right away, and (b) the manufacturers will notice that using E. coli corn is likely to cost them money. And then the bottom will fall out of the market for E. coli corn.

If you are gluten-intolerant, or if you don't actually have the gluten-intolerant gene but are having reactions that mimic gluten intolerance, you need to be careful about eating even natural corn--in any case--corn bran naturally contains a biochemical that interferes with our use of niacin, so when we eat whole natural corn we need to eat other things that contain extra niacin. But, currently, you need to be extremely careful about eating E. coli corn, which is what most of the corn products in your supermarket are likely to be at the time of writing, and which may be producing all the symptoms of celiac sprue in some people who don't even have that reaction to wheat. Don't buy corn on the cob. Don't buy vegetable soup that contains corn. Don't buy corn tortillas. Don't buy ready-to-eat meals that have sauces thickened with cornstarch. Don't buy canned fruit that's sweetened, or canned soup or vegetable products that are "freshened up," with corn syrup. Don't buy processed foods that have their "flavors enhanced" with "modified corn starch" (which means monosodium glutamate made from corn). Be wary about meat made from cows, pigs, or chickens that eat corn--we don't know yet how dangerous this meat is, but there is evidence that E. coli corn has harmful effects on animals.

And tell the manufacturers, and the stores, what you're not buying and why. Let them know that GMO corn is unfit for use as anything but ethanol. We can get GMO corn off the market with or without the U.S. Senate's help.

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RED ALERT: Right now a handful of Senators are trying to pass another Corporate Loophole for Monsanto to escape from complying with common sense state GMO labeling laws! - Stop Monsanto's GMO Trolls in the Senate - Every voice counts!
If you thought Congress couldn’t get any more corrupt, we’re going to have to ask you to sit down when you read this. When we woke up yesterday morning, we almost fell over when we read a New York Times front-page story about how Monsanto received extra legal protection from the House of Representatives last year when it passed a bill to update the 40-year-old Toxic Substance Control Act (TSCA), which leaves millions of Americans vulnerable everyday to more than 1,000 hazardous chemicals still in sale across the country.
In the process of writing this bill, an unknown member of the House of Representatives slipped a one-paragraph provision in the TSCA bill that exempts Monsanto from ALL financial liability from lawsuits and financial settlements sought for PCB contamination and cleanup sites.
This is essentially a Get-out-of-Jail-Free card for Monsanto, exempting them from BILLIONS of dollars of legal liability from lawsuits for damages which have been filed in several major cities, including Seattle and San Diego and a lawsuit filed last year from individuals seeking damages for diagnoses of a form of cancer known as non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.
The St. Louis-based chemical and biotech seed giant is now claiming they “had nothing to do” with this new “Monsanto Clause”, even though Monsanto was the only company that made this toxic chemical.
According to the New York Times, “the provision does not mention the company by name, but between the early 1930s and 1977, Monsanto manufactured almost all of the 1.25 billion pounds of PCBs sold in the United States.”
That’s right, a member of Congress intentionally slipped in a provision to protect Monsanto’s toxic profits over those of individuals with cancer and major U.S. cities seeking millions in legal fees for cleaning up the cancer-causing PCBs, which are now pervasive in the environment.
Now, Monsanto is seeking extra legal protection from the Senate so it can continue to deny America’s their basic right to know what’s in their food by making state GMO labeling laws illegal.
Now Monsanto Seeks Special Legal Protection from State GMO Labeling Laws!
Today, at 10 am EST, the Senate Agriculture Committee is expected to vote to outlaw state GMO labeling laws in order to give extra legal protection for Monsanto and the biotech industry once again and we can’t let them get away with it!
Right now, Monsanto and the Grocery Manufacturers Association (GMA) are desperate to try to prevent the state of Vermont’s GMO labeling law from going into effect on July 1st of this year and your Senator could go along with it! Last summer the House passed a similar Dark Act bill by a vote of 275 to 150 and we can’t let the Senate pass this outrageous bill!
We need to make sure they hear – Loud and Clear – that we won’t allow them to steal our basic democratic rights to protect Monsanto’s toxic profits.
1. Make a call today! This corrupt deal – the ultimate Monsanto Protection Act – will be voted on today in the Senate Ag Committee and your Senators need to hear from you today!
http://action.fooddemocracynow.org/call/dont_let_Monsanto_and_GMA_kill_GMO_labelingt/?t=4&akid=1820.359821.EzTYvk
Tell your Senators to support mandatory GMO labeling and to stand up for your rights and the Constitution.
And
2. Click here to send a letter to your Senators today! Every voice counts!
http://action.fooddemocracynow.org/sign/stop_Monsantos_GMO_Trolls_in_the_Senate_Today/?t=7&akid=1820.359821.EzTYvk
After spending more than $100 million to defeat us in GMO labeling ballot initiatives in California, Washington, Colorado and Oregon, Monsanto and the Grocery Manufacturers Association are once again trying to get Congress to violate our basic Constitutional rights by making it illegal for states to pass reasonable and common sense GMO labeling bills like we did in Connecticut, Maine and Vermont.
Then SHARE this image far and wide to Stop Monsanto's GMO Trolls in the Senate!

Facebook link here - https://fdn.actionkit.com/go/1606?t=10&akid=1820.359821.EzTYvk
Deja Monsanto Vu ~ 2013 Congress Passes The Monsanto Protection Act
A little History Lesson: We’ve been here before! A little over 2 years ago, Monsanto lobbyists successfully snuck in a rider, which Food Democracy Now! called the Monsanto Protection Act, into an emergency must pass spending bill, a continuing resolution (CR) that only funded the government for 6 months because Congress now is so broken it can't even accomplish its basic business functions, like creating a budget, without the help of corporate lobbyists. They then use these intentionally manufactured spending emergencies to attach outrageous corporate loophole protections like the Monsanto Protection Act.
Despite overwhelming opposition, both chambers of Congress allowed the Monsanto Protection Act to pass and President Obama signed it into law in March of 2013.
Food Democracy Now! members like you were so outraged that you made more than 100,000 phone calls to the Congress and the White House and generated more than 250,000 signatures opposing the Monsanto Protection Act, which we then flew to DC and delivered to the White House. It was a moment that captured the attention of the White House and Congress and the world and made it clear that the People would not tolerate special interests, like Monsanto, to write our laws. Six months later, this unconstitutional loophole protecting Monsanto's profits was removed from the next budget bill - all thanks to action by people like you!
We can do this again - this our moment - It's all hands on deck! We are in the final hours to protect our right to know what's in our food and states' rights so we can achieve mandatory GMO labeling. Please share with your friends and call Congress today! Every voice counts!
http://action.fooddemocracynow.org/call/dont_let_Monsanto_and_GMA_kill_GMO_labelingt/?t=13&akid=1820.359821.EzTYvk
Remember, democracy is like a muscle, either you use it or you lose it!
Thanks for participating in food democracy,
Dave, Lisa and the Food Democracy Now! team
Sources:
1. “Monsanto Could Benefit From a Chemical Safety Bill”, The New York Times, Eric Lipton, February 29, 2016
http://action.fooddemocracynow.org/go/1605?t=15&akid=1820.359821.EzTYvk

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