Look, the important thing is, they are making a lot of money

Also, they are key to how our government works for us:

I guess what I’m trying to say is, shop at Walmart, or the terrorists will already have won. Or do you hate our freedom too?

  • Marion (Mael Muire)

    Mark, I can’t believe you didn’t tag this under:
    1. What could it hurt?
    2. How were we to know?

  • http://etc.victorlams.com victor

    I would have tagged this post with “Citation Needed”.

    • R. Howell

      Citation need? Why? It’s a clever picture that makes a Big Corporation look bad. Even if it’s not “true” in the sense of “factually corresponding to reality”, it’s true in the deeper sense of “expresses the fact that Big Corporations are eeeeeeeeevil!”

      But if you insist, here’s a citation:
      http://www.snopes.com/food/tainted/monsantocorn.asp

      • Chris M

        So.. independent researchers have said it’s dangerous and the company responded with it’s own research saying “nuh uh!”. Call me unconvinced either way.

        geez, it’s like we can’t even trust SCIENTISTS anymore!

        • http://chicagoboyz.net TMLutas

          In other news, green jelly beans cause acne.
          http://xkcd.com/882/

          • http://confederatepapist.blogspot.com/ Confederate Papist

            That’s because the high fructose corn syrup is made from this corn!!

            ;-)

      • Michaelus

        I love Snopes – their response simply states that the studies that found danger in the Monsanto corn have been challenged – by Monsanto among others!!! Do we really think that the smart guys at Monsanto today are so much smarter than the ones 30 years ago who claimed that Agent Orange was safe?

        • Andy, Bad Person

          I don’t think most people have problems with Monsanto re: chemical danger. Their ethics with regard to essentially claiming their corn as “intellectual property” is questionable at the very best, and is more accurately called evil. This is a company that “donates” corn to third world countries as long as they don’t use the corn to grow their own.

          Oh, wait. They can’t Monsanto corn is rendered incapable of reproducing. Give a man some corn, feed him for a day. Teach a man to grow corn, and tough shit your corn isn’t growing because we need you to keep coming and buying it from us.

  • http://disputations.blogspot.com Tom K.

    What is an acceptable number of people who worked for (or on behalf of) both Monsanto and the federal government over the last 20 years?

    • ivan_the_mad

      A better question would be, what is the acceptable level of incestuous influence corporations should have on the government, especially for the purposes of bypassing safeguards against harmful practices or those of dubious effect? The answer, of course, is none. Draw your own conclusions about the acceptable number of people.

      • http://disputations.blogspot.com Tom K.

        My question is an attempt to uncover the argument Mark apparently thinks the Venn diagram makes.

        If you aren’t willing to draw conclusions from your own argument, I don’t see why I should bother.

        • Ted Seeber

          He did draw a conclusion. The acceptable number of business people monkeying about with our laws in government is zero.

          • http://disputations.blogspot.com Tom K.

            Are you saying his argument is this:

            “There is no acceptable level, above none, of incestuous influence corporations should have on the government, especially for the purposes of bypassing safeguards against harmful practices or those of dubious effect. Therefore, there is no acceptable number of people, above zero, who worked for (or on behalf of) both Monsanto and the federal government over the last 20 years.”

            Because that’s an invalid argument. (Specifically, the conclusion begs the question of whether working for (or on behalf of) both Monsanto and the federal government constitutes categorically unacceptable incestuous influence.)

            • ivan_the_mad

              I’m not making that argument; in fact, I’m pretty sure I didn’t make an argument at all ;) Although you are correct, what you’ve written is invalid, as the conclusion does not follow from the premise.

              I didn’t say anything about Monsanto or the quantity of people in government who have worked or do work for Monsanto. I said, “A better question would be …”. That question involves what they call in legal land “a conflict of interest” (which is also, I think, the point of the image). Should we permit this “incestuous corporate influence”, by which I mean should civil authorities be involved in decisions that affect Entity X if they had or continue to have some kind of relationship or association with Entity X? Obviously, I say no, as I answered my own question immediately after asking.

              I said “draw your own conclusions” regarding your original question, which I took at face value, because I think the number of people who have worked for both the federal government and for Entity X is not a useful question.

              Apologies for the wordy response, I know that brevity is the essence of clarity.

              • http://disputations.blogspot.com Tom K.

                If civil authorities should not be involved in decisions that affect Entity X if they had or continue to have some kind of relationship or association with Entity X, then the number of people who worked for (or on behalf of) first Monsanto and then the federal government over the last 20 years should be zero.

                My question was “useful” at least insofar as it drew from you the assertion that involvement in decisions affecting an entity with which one had some kind of relationship constitutes a conflict of interest.

                If that assertion were true, then the Venn diagram would demonstrate a problem with government.

                Since I think that assertion can be shown to be false, my question remains — which, more broadly stated is, to what argument does the Venn diagram contribute?

                • ivan_the_mad

                  “If civil authorities should not be involved in decisions that affect Entity X if they had or continue to have some kind of relationship or association with Entity X, then the number of people who worked for (or on behalf of) first Monsanto and then the federal government over the last 20 years should be zero.”

                  That’s your conclusion, only the premise in that statement is mine, just so we’re clear. I don’t think that the conclusion necessarily follows from the premise.

                  • http://disputations.blogspot.com Tom K.

                    Ah, right, I’d need to add the “involved in decisions” condition.

                    • ivan_the_mad

                      And remove the “in the last twenty years” bit. Then you’d have a conditional syllogism I could get behind :D

                    • ivan_the_mad

                      And also be consistent with the usage of either Monsanto or Entity X in both premise and conclusion. *quibble quibble quibble*

  • http://confederatepapist.blogspot.com/ Confederate Papist

    GMO food is *not* healthy. Many holistic and natural healing docs have been saying this for years.

    Many of the modern day maladies are as a result of these “clone” foods that look great, can resist insects and weeds, etc. but they are nutritionally empty.

    Organic, local farming is the best option for fruits, veggies and meat. Just be careful, there are a lot of faux “organic” products out there too.

    • bob cratchit

      This is where you’re fecked. Nobody can afford real organic or local, sustainably produced food.

      • ivan_the_mad

        That’s right! Who has money for good quality food when you need to spend that money on your iPhone’s data plan, cable TV, designer clothes, after-market parts for your car, a brand-new laptop every year …

        Saw an interesting picture about this: http://x0e.xanga.com/d82e304169c35282385784/b225092965.jpg

        • Andy, Bad Person

          Yawn. Most people don’t buy organic, and most people don’t have most of the things you mentioned. Burn that strawman.

          • ivan_the_mad

            I don’t see a straw man there, especially since it’s not even an argument to begin with (and thus it’s rather difficult for it contain a fallacy). I was being flippant to draw attention to my heuristic that we have a lot of other wants/needs competing with just the parts of our budget directed to frugal comforts. If you took that comment as being an earnest attempt at argument and in need of debunking, well, you have my blessing to tilt at the windmill ;)

            • Andy, Bad Person

              Got it. Withdrawn.

        • Ted Seeber

          I have one small side yard dedicated to growing food. I never get around to harvesting it, but it’s nice to know that it is there. I count it among my emergency supplies along with my six months of canned goods. I’m hoping soon to add a Gofoods Grab n’ Go kit to my emergency supplies as well (which is a 72 hour kit for three people or a one week kit for two or a two week kit for one, depending on who survives the earthquake).

      • Adolfo

        That’s just patently false. My family of 6 eats locally grown, organic food and I make less than $45,000/year.

        • http://confederatepapist.blogspot.com/ Confederate Papist

          It goes to show Adolfo that anybody can prioritise where their money goes. The whole “organic food is too expensive” is wholly dependent on where you get it. Local markets have better prices than a Whole Foods or some place like that.

  • bob cratchit

    Monsanto is high on the collective list of corporate evil and for a long time. In order to monopolize the food chain they produce seeds that are rendered incapable of regeneration. And freak potato’s that cannot sprout. They should be on everyone’s shit list.

  • http://chicagoboyz.net TMLutas

    Two things matter here. First is whether the product actually causes health problems. For that you need the study which Mark Shea did not provide. I dug it up and it can be found here. Bottom line is that the study itself says that the numbers of test subjects (rats) used is too small to draw firm conclusions. If I’m following it correctly, it’s also a first independent study which means that there’s a lot more work to be done to nail this down. Monsanto’s done studies that went the other way otherwise the crop wouldn’t have been approved for use. Maybe this study’s spotted something new, maybe it’s just a statistical artifact. It’s a bit early to start banning things. A better plan would be to dispassionately follow the science.

    The second item is the incestuous relationship between Monsanto and the government. You’ve got a few problems with the thesis. The list is mostly Dems with one token Rep on the list. A company aiming to do the sort of corporatism that is being bandied about would be much more balanced in its agents of influence so its influence would not wax and wane depending on the public’s mood. The personnel list doesn’t fit the accusation.

  • http://etc.victorlams.com victor

    Okay, I’ll try again with a better initial comment… uh….

    “Now THAT’S what I call “pop” corn!”

  • David Davies

    I just sprayed the wife’s veggie garden with BT. BT, the natural answer to caterpillars!! OMG!!!!!!!!!!!!! Why wasn’t I warned that ORGANIC GARDENING KILLS!!!!!!!

    I blame Bush.

  • Lloyd Petre

    Spare me. Monsanto btCorn has been in use for 8 years. Remember the big clutch-your-stomach-and-fall-down-dead epidemic of 2004? Me too. The Venn diagram is about as meaningful as pointing out that there are six Catholics on the Supreme Court which is why it never strikes down anti-abortion laws. Right? I further note, with interest, that the diagram is one Mark got from an organic lifestyle site. Organic gardeners have been using bt (Bacillus thuringiensis ) as a pesticide for 50 years and their fear is that in mass usage bugs will develop an immunity and are bs-ing about other “dangers” to keep this from happening.

  • http://redcardigan.blogspot.com/ Erin Manning

    What a depressing comment thread. Monsanto’s relationship with small farmers is: if we find our seeds on your land, we’ll sue you out of existence, even if you can prove that your crops were contaminated by the “Roundup Ready ™ seeds growing on that huge factory farm which surrounds your little endeavor. And that little negative doesn’t even begin to address the appearance of “super weeds” and other side-effects of GMO farming:

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2011/oct/19/gm-crops-insecurity-superweeds-pesticides

    But, no, apparently the correct Catholic response is to pay no attention to the man behind the curtain, because only lefty kooks care about the impact on farming and the environment of GMO crops, patented seeds and other living organisms, and closed-systems of seed/pesticide/licensed farming wherein the profits of the biotech company increase while everybody else gets poorer.

    • http://confederatepapist.blogspot.com/ Confederate Papist

      Erin, natural healing and holistic docs have been screaming about stuff like this for years.

      I’m not what anyone would call a lefty, but I am thoroughly convinced that Big Agri and Big Pharma are in bed with Big Government and it’s to the detriment of anyone in North America.

  • http://mondayevening.wordpress.com/ Marcel

    Monsanto can be wicked without gm corn being toxic, just like Exxon can be evil without global warming being Truth.

  • http://austrolibertariancatholic.wordpress.com Martial Artist

    @Confederate Papist,

    You write:

    Local markets have better prices than a Whole Foods.

    That is a good thing, because Whole Foods donates money to Planned Parenthood.

    Pax et bonum,
    Keith Töpfer

  • http://austrolibertariancatholic.wordpress.com Martial Artist

    @David Davies,

    Yes, be afraid of organic farming as well. As a former Chemistry major, I am waiting for someone to market inorganic food, so that the distinction between inorganic and organic will be actual, as opposed to something that is, at least partly, a marketing buzzword.

    Pax et bonum,
    Keith Töpfer

  • MikeTheGeek

    Hosed the tomatoes down w/ BT the other day. Been doing so for 20 years. Guess I’m doomed.

    Never gave figured out why so many self-appointed religious experts have such a big problem w/ science. Breed it = good; clone it = bad. Yeesh.

  • Brady

    Like many people I have real problems with the way Monsanto conducts business and patents. But, generally speaking, we need these companies to keep advancing their technology to produce more food. I really dislike the whole organic health nut craze. As a Catholic I am against population control, I’ve always said that the more people we get, the more efficient and advanced our technology becomes to feed them. We would have a very tough time growing enough food to feed the planet if everyone stuck to “organic” methods of farming. Being raised on a farm, I’ve seen many organic crops, they just don’t produce much, there is no way around it. I’m not saying we shouldn’t monitor our new agri science to make sure its safe, but the gut reaction many people have to many of these products is ridiculous.


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