Skip to main content

Neil deGrasse Tyson, probably the most popular astrophysicist, if not scientist, of this generation, replaced Carl Sagan as the spokesman of all things science for the country. While not ignoring Bill Nye's impact on making science education fun and approachable (and who took classes from Carl Sagan at Cornell University), Sagan literally passed the baton of being the country's science teacher to Tyson.

For those of us on the left side of the political spectrum, Tyson is like the hero of the pro-science crowd. This past spring, Tyson hosted a program, Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey, which described and supported some of the great science ideas of our time–evolution, age of the universe, human caused climate change, and other major scientific principles. Ironically, the show was broadcast in the USA on the Fox TV network, whose news division can be charitably described as ultraconservative. Right wing Christian fundamentalist groups, one of the main key demographic groups who watch Fox News, loathed Cosmos for trumpeting scientific knowledge over religious interpretations in just about every one of the the 13 episodes.

Of course, for every reason that Fox News hated Cosmos (even though it was a huge ratings success for Fox, and has garnered a significant number of TV awards and nominations), those of us on the pro-science side loved it. Now, I'm a rarity in the science community in that I did not enjoy the show (the animations offended me on so many levels, but apparently kids loved it), I did watch every episode and would have to rank the episodes on evolution and global warming as some of the best science TV I'd ever seen–despite the lame graphics.

Although he has made comments and tweeted about his skepticism of the anti-GMO crowd in the past, it was only recently, when Neil deGrasse Tyson was recorded telling people to “chill out” about GMOs, that most people found out about it. To quote Tyson:

Practically every food you buy in a store for consumption by humans is genetically modified food. There are no wild, seedless watermelons. There's no wild cows...You list all the fruit, and all the vegetables, and ask yourself, is there a wild counterpart to this? If there is, it's not as large, it's not as sweet, it's not as juicy, and it has way more seeds in it. We have systematically genetically modified all the foods, the vegetables and animals that we have eaten ever since we cultivated them. It's called artificial selection.
His comment lead to a huge outcry from anti-GMO activists (read the comments on this article on the liberal website, Daily Kos–as a disclaimer, I also write there frequently). There's an old saying that "I fucking love science except when it doesn't support my beliefs." The anti-GMO crowd uses the same ridiculous anti-science rhetoric of the anti-evolution and anti-global warming crowd. I seriously could just change "global warming is fake" to "GMO's are dangerous", and literally nothing else, and they would say the exact same thing. I am convinced that all science deniers meet at an international convention somewhere and share strategies.

In an article about Tyson's comments, the liberal intellectual powerhouse Ezra Klein succinctly summed up the uproar about what Tyson said:

In laboratory settings, there's no evident difference between liberals and conservatives in their propensity to believe what they want, evidence be damned. In one experiment, Yale law professor Dan Kahan showed you could get liberals to start doubting global warming (and conservatives to begin accepting it) by making clear that any solution would require geoengineering. In another he showed that both liberals and conservatives were more likely to rate someone an expert on climate change if they agreed with their conclusions. In a third, he showed liberals were about as resistant to evidence showing concealed carry laws are safe as conservatives were to evidence showing climate change is dangerous.
Dr. Kahan, who has advised me that those who are opposed to vaccines are unconvinced by arguments (and even less so with my occasional uncivil commentary about them), makes a major point–evidence doesn't to those who have a political agenda or personal belief. Tyson, who has no personal involvement in GMO's, looks at the evidence as science, not a political issue.

Environmental issues are important to the liberal base. Global warming is an enormous environmental issue that happens to be critical to liberal political parties, not only in the USA, but throughout the world. But when Klein tried to find out what was the liberal equivalent to climate change, it was GMO's.

GMOs are actually an example of liberalism resisting the biases of its base. Though there's a lot of mistrust towards GMOs and fury towards Monsanto among liberals, the Democratic Party establishment is dismissive of this particular campaign. You don't see President Obama or Democratic congressional leaders pushing anti-GMO legislation

There are, of course, party actors who've been more helpful to the anti-GMO movement. In California, the Democratic Party endorsed a proposition to label GMO foods. But that's a modest step — and even that step hasn't yet made it to the national party's agenda.

Of course, as opposed to politics, where everything is painted in broad black and white brushstrokes, and the public, especially in the USA, who are impatient with any discussion that isn't wrapped up in 140 characters, science is complicated and requires more than a couple of sentences to explain in detail. Tyson felt that he needed to clarify his comments, mainly because his original comments about "chill out" originated in a 2 minute interview. A couple of days after he made the original observations about GMO's, Tyson wrote some followup comments on Facebook (I've edited the formatting slightly to make it a bit more readable):
I offer my views on these nuanced issues here, if anybody is interested:
  • Patented Food Strains: In a free market capitalist society, which we have all “bought” into here in America, if somebody invents something that has market value, they ought to be able to make as much money as they can selling it, provided they do not infringe the rights of others. I see no reason why food should not be included in this concept.
  • Labeling: Since practically all food has been genetically altered from nature, if you wanted labeling I suppose you could demand it, but then it should be for all such foods. Perhaps there could be two different designations: GMO-Agriculture GMO-Laboratory.
  • Non-perennial Seed Strains: It’s surely legal to sell someone seeds that cannot reproduce themselves, requiring that the farmer buy seed stocks every year from the supplier. But when sold to developing country — one struggling to become self-sufficient — the practice is surely immoral. Corporations, even when they work within the law, should not be held immune from moral judgement on these matters.
  • Monopolies are generally bad things in a free market. To the extent that the production of GMOs are a monopoly, the government should do all it can to spread the baseline of this industry. (My favorite monopoly joke ever, told by Stephen Wright: “I think it’s wrong that the game Monopoly is sold by only one company”)
  • Safety: Of course new foods should be tested for health risks, regardless of their origin. That’s the job of the Food and Drug Administration (in the USA). Actually, humans have been testing food, even without the FDA ,since the dawn of agriculture. Whenever a berry or other ingested plant killed you, you knew not to serve it to you family.
  • Silk Worms: I partly mangled my comments on this. Put simply, commercial Silk Worms have been genetically modified by centuries of silk trade, such that they cannot survive in the wild. Silk Worms currently exist only to serve the textile industry. Just as Milk Cows are bred with the sole purpose of providing milk to humans. There are no herds of wild Milk Cows terrorizing the countryside.

If your objection to GMOs is the morality of selling non-perennial seed stocks, then focus on that. If your objection to GMOs is the monopolistic conduct of agribusiness, then focus on that. But to paint the entire concept of GMO with these particular issues is to blind yourself to the underlying truth of what humans have been doing — and will continue to do — to nature so that it best serves our survival. That’s what all organisms do when they can, or would do, if they could. Those that didn’t, have gone extinct extinct.

I'm fairly certain that part of the anti-GMO sentiment relies on the old Appeal to Nature logical fallacy, which states that only natural is good. Of course, how do you define natural? Diabetics inject a GMO human insulin, that is the actual human insulin gene is inserted into another organism, then it synthesizes "natural" human insulin. And if you think this is appalling, and refuse to do it, then you will die, particularly fast if you're a Type 1 diabetic.

As I've written before, evidence is all that matters in science. Yelling and screaming that Monsanto is going to crush the world and is trying to kill us all (which is seriously illogical), that's just yelling and screaming, and has nothing to do with real science. The scientific consensus on GMO's is nearly the same as it is for human-caused climate change.

For example, here is the consensus position of the American Association for the Advancement of Sciences (AAAS) on climate change:

The scientific evidence is clear: global climate change caused by human activities is occurring now, and it is a growing threat to society. Accumulating data from across the globe reveal a wide array of effects: rapidly melting glaciers, destabilization of major ice sheets, increases in extreme weather, rising sea level, shifts in species ranges, and more. The pace of change and the evidence of harm have increased markedly over the last five years. The time to control greenhouse gas emissions is now.
The AAAS has also released another statement of consensus science on genetically modified foods (pdf):
The science is quite clear: crop improvement by the modern molecular techniques of biotechnology is safe … The World Health Organization, the American Medical Association, the U.S. National Academy of Sciences, the British Royal Society, and every other respected organization that has examined the evidence has come to the same conclusion: consuming foods containing ingredients derived from GM crops is no riskier than consuming the same foods containing ingredients from crop plants modified by conventional plant improvement techniques.
I guess someone could argue that the AAAS is right about one matter, but completely off-base on the other. Science deniers all do the same thing, pick and choose the science that supports their pre-existing beliefs in attitudes. Evolution deniers try to find evidence that the world is only 6000 years old, ignore the figurative (if not literal) mountains of evidence that support evolution as a scientific fact. But there is a group of people who mock those evolution deniers, while inventing massive conspiracies and fake science to support their anti-GMO beliefs.

One last thing. People ask how can an astrophysicist speak about GMO crops, which is a valid criticism. But here's the difference–Tyson isn't pretending to be an authority figure on GMO's, he's supporting the official scientific consensus developed by authorities. I strongly criticize scientists, who may be authorities in one area, but who then abuse that authority and pretend that they can speak to the science in something wholly separate from their own. They take their fame in one field to pretend they are an expert in another one, trading in on that fame. It happens all the time with those "scientists" who sign petitions disputing evolution or climate change. They are usually engineers, or computer "scientists" or some other non-expert, who wouldn't know evolution if it smacked them on the head.

Tyson is supporting the consensus, because he's a brilliant scientist. He isn't going to suddenly switch fields to become an geneticist or cell biologist, and even he did, he'd be publishing his first paper 10 years from now. What he does is what any scientist does–examine the consensus, look at whose research has the most weight, and see if the opposing view has the same quality of research. And right now, the evidence is overwhelming that GMO crops are safe for humans and for the environment (and if you're going to bring up glyphosate, Roundup, then that's a different conversation, it's no longer about GMO's). And the evidence that GMO plants are harmful is pitifully weak.

And again, because science isn't black and white, if the scientific consensus changes because of real evidence, I'm willing to switch my position. And foods ought to be tested, and that means GMO's, "organic" foods, meats, dairy, everything. I find it ironic that there's an implication that "organic" means healthy and GMO isn't, when the science behind GMO's is significantly broader and deeper than with regards to organic foods.

I am not naive. I know that there are conservatives who think that Tyson right and wrong. And some liberals who are apoplectic about Tyson today. To me, Neil deGrasse Tyson is perfectly rational and consistent–he follows the evidence to the conclusion, not establishing a conclusion, and denying all science that doesn't support it.

Originally posted to SkepticalRaptor on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 04:00 PM PDT.

Also republished by SciTech.

EMAIL TO A FRIEND X
Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags

?

More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

  •  One of the most difficult of physics specialties (48+ / 0-)

    is cosmology. The mathematics involved, using unusual geometries and requiring real dexterity with general relativity, is amongst the most difficult across the scientific spectrum. This guy Tyson is very fucking smart. And a lot of these guys are scientifically brilliant but incapable of writing or speaking well. Tyson is a great communicator. If anyone should take on Hillary I would vote for him. All else equal, I'd like another black person. If for no other reason that it would make the entire right wing's heads explode. Anyhow, I'm a big fan of the guy and if he thinks GMOs are cool, that's good fucking enough for me.

    •  He's focused on how to speak to his audience. (68+ / 0-)

      I saw a video once where Tyson commented how he first approached in invitation to speaking on Fox News.  He began by looking at how the show he would appear on treats its guests.  

      Seeing that he would likely only be able to speak in short sound bytes, he went about looking for snippets of wisdom he could insert into the brief sections of time that would be allotted to him.

      We need more folks like him in the communication of science business.

      •  Wow, this is the thread for all the wrong people (15+ / 14-)

        And I mean people who are wrong about everything.

        We have doc2 up there saying essentially (and this is better if you read it with a Duck Dynasty accent):

        'That guy Tye-son is reel smart. If he says eatin' dog shit is good, well, that's enuff fer me.'

        And here we have you fawning over the guy because he's sufficiently Orwellian enough to manipulate the Fox News medium.

        Yes!!! I can't wait till all TV people start speaking in short soundbites. Maybe then, liberals will turn the stupid things off finally and join reality.

        And finally, on Daily Kos, we now have a Monsanto contingent making it to the Rec List, shilling for GMO foods.

        Congratulations Monsanto.

        As for Neil deGr4ass Tyson, he's a fucking idiot. A failed physicist plucked out onto the corporate media arena as the spokesman for all that Wall Street wants you to believe about science.

        A PR hack. Has always been. And this latest step into a genuine scientific controversy with stomping boots is the science equivalent of World Wrestling.

        Hilariously, in Tyson's bio on Wikipedia, someone wrote:

        He was 18th author on a paper with Brian Schmidt, a future winner of the 2011 Nobel Prize in Physics
        LOL. He knew a real Nobel prize winner!!!

        HERE'S THE DEAL:

        Right now, Monsanto and others have altered the genes of some food plants to make them actually PRODUCE A PESTICIDE.

        Yum!!!

        Other modifications create organisms that are RESISTANT TO PESTICIDES.

        Yum again!!!

        You don't have to be a scientist to know that there are risks inherent in such radical alterations of the foods we eat.

        And you have to be a complete idiot to deny that we can so dramatically alter our foods without the potential for unseen consequences.

        Our bodies didn't evolve over millions of years eating these genetically modified organisms. Most of them are probably harmless, other than the fact that they taste like shit.

        But for the wrongest of the wrong:

        Global warming and GMOs are two completely different, completely unrelated issues.

        To try and link them together the way Tyson and others have done here is pure smear technique, straight out of Propaganda 101.

        It is a ridiculously transparent attempt to falsely equate legitimate and scientific concern about the risks associated with GMOs with the completely unscientific denial of climate change.

        Anyone using this smear, is either a Monsanto sockpuppet, or a natural born sleazebag.

        •  HRable (8+ / 0-)
          And finally, on Daily Kos, we now have a Monsanto contingent making it to the Rec List, shilling for GMO foods
          .

          "Well, I'm sure I'd feel much worse if I weren't under such heavy sedation..."--David St. Hubbins

          by Old Left Good Left on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 11:19:06 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  No, what is HRable is claiming that people who are (16+ / 0-)

            concerned about large, transnational corporations genetically engineering pesticides into their food are like global warming deniers.

            And what are you still doing here. You were supposed to be banned when you posted your whining GBCW diary.

            •  I completely agree (12+ / 0-)

              It is offensive and completely unacceptable to smear, or even remotely compare people who are opposed to GMO with people who deny climate change.

              Delete this diary. If you want to debate the science, that's one thing. But resorting to ad hominem attacks on people who are skeptical of the claims of Monsanto is pure troll behavior.

              •  Actually (6+ / 1-)

                It's totally accurate , Food is to white liberals as Religion is to the Evangelical right

              •  You're grossly oversimplifying. There are multiple (10+ / 0-)

                legitimate reasons to oppose corporate practices regarding GMO's. but the existence of scientific evidence demonstrating that they're unsafe isn't one of them. The comparison between climate deniers and GMO safety skeptics has to do with the tendency of both groups to selectively ignore the consensus of scientific evidence on these subjects, nothing more.  Did you really not get that?  Confirmation bias is a risk that ALL advocates face. Why would GMO safety skeptics be magically immune?

                You say:

                Delete this diary. If you want to debate the science, that's one thing. But resorting to ad hominem attacks on people who are skeptical of the claims of Monsanto is pure troll behavior.
                Huh? This diary is ONLY about the science, which clearly you don't want to discuss. This diary was not about Monsanto or bad corporate practices. Tyson acknowledges that Monsanto is a bad corporate actor -- but he rightly points out that that's a completely  DIFFERENT conversation than the subject of this diary, which is that both sides of the political spectrum have a tendency to only look at the scientific evidence when it backs up their preexisting beliefs.

                Sadly, your obfuscation of the issues involved here only serves to prove his point.

                Never doubt that a small group of committed people can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. --Margaret Mead

                by The Knute on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 12:24:09 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  So you claim (6+ / 0-)

                  But think about how silly your argument is. Proving something is safe is like trying to prove a negative. All we can ever do is conduct tests, then see if something breaks.

                  Are you really going to try and tell me that all the pro-GMO studies that have been conducted claiming that they are safe can be relied upon?

                  Really?

                  LOL. And you're claiming to be the scientific one. Hahahahahaha.

                  Not to mention that literally TRILLIONS of $ are at stake for Monsanto over the coming decades. TRILLIONS.

                  But when they tell you, with their oh-so-objective studies, by universities that have taken grant money from Monsanto connected foundations, that their pesticide plants are safe to eat, you believe them?

                  Hahahahahaha. I got a beachfront property to sell you. In Kansas.

                  •  "Safety" is definable (6+ / 0-)

                    We prove medications to be safe - or, at least, safe enough - all the time. When you study something over and over, and find the incidence of harm to be below some cut-off level, that can be deemed to be safe. Is the cut-off level appropriate? That's a different argument. Is zero harm reasonable or appropriate? Depends.

                    It has been observed that the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few; if a fraction of a percent of people are at risk when millions can benefit, that's generally viewed as an acceptable trade-off. Monsanto's monopolistic behavior is a serious problem, and their rapacious sales behavior, especially in the developing world, is thoroughly immoral. But there is no denying that their crops grow better and feed more people, with little evidence of individual harms.

                    •  What does "safe" mean? (4+ / 0-)

                      I absolutely accept that the already approved GMO crops are most likely safe for animal consumption.  I mostly agree that FDA-approved GMO crops are safe for human consumption.  But FDA doesn't regulate safety for the environment.  For every GMO crop, that would take a much longer study period, those studies haven't been done, and the best we have for those studies is the completely uncontrolled planting of those crops that we're doing.

                      "But there is no denying that their crops grow better and feed more people, with little evidence of individual harms."

                      This is completely false.  The vast majority of GMO crops are resistant to their herbicides.  That says nothing about how well they grow, except that they survive herbicides.  They don't feed more people, they feed people more cheaply.  No, those aren't the same things.  And actually, they mostly feed more animals.  

                      As I noted above, the real questions still remaining about human direct genetic modification of plants are their effects on the environment.  So far there's no problem, but that doesn't mean they're safe.  Before fracking started polluting water supplies and causing earthquakes, it was considered safe too.

                    •  and yet (4+ / 0-)

                      those medications often are not safe at all.

                      edwardlcote.blogspot.com

                      by Edward L Cote on Wed Aug 06, 2014 at 12:04:24 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                    •  safety (4+ / 0-)

                      And all the time on TV the ambulance chasers are having a field day over FDA approved safe medications and devices and the the lawsuits begin. The lawyers win and the payouts begin and the lawyers move on to other "safe" FDA approved items. This system makes the American people just experiments in Big Pharma's petri dish.

                    •  Um, medicine comes w/ a list of contraindications (0+ / 0-)

                      and known potential side effects and adverse reactions. I always look them up and read them for any Rx my doctor gives me and decide for myself if I really want to take the Rx or not (and also discuss it with my doctor).

                      For instance, some blood pressure medicines are not recommended for people taking blood thinners. Some medicines interact adversely with other medicines or foods or dietary supplements.

                      If you don't read that stuff, you really don't know if a particular medicine is more or less likely to be safe for you to take. And BTW, your doctor usually doesn't know everything you eat, OTC medicines you take, dietary supplements you take, etc.

                      But with medicines, we know that they are not inherently safe even when FDA Approved, but that they are considered to be of more benefit than harm for certain medical conditions. And even so, many drugs get recalled every year because it turns out that wasn't the case (more benefit than harm).

                      Most people don't expect their food to come with hidden risks. And the only way people can determine if a (processed or altered) food item is likely to be safe for them to eat is if the ingredients are listed.

                      When it comes to products that we ingest, we have a right to know what is in the product.

                  •  It is possible to end up allergic to almost any- (0+ / 0-)

                    thing including both GMO crops and organically grown crops.  So everything has some risk.  The object of testing is to make sure the risks are low enough to be acceptable.

                    •  Allergic has NOTHING to do with GMO or not (0+ / 0-)

                      Becoming allergic to something has NOTHING to do with the GMO factor or not---

                      It has to do with some ones body recognizing a THREAT and over reacting to that threat with histamine.

                      Has anyone declared that GMO foods have a larger tendency to do that????

                      Citation please.

                      Because--I live with several severely allergic people here.  But unless lobster and shrimp--and I might believe it for shrimp--have been recently turned into GMO foods stocks---and ditto wasps etc---then this has NOTHING to do with it.

                •  I do NOT object to the basic technology of gene (8+ / 0-)

                  splicing.  I do object that Monsanto's 2 proudest accomplishments in GMO crops are Round Up Ready everything--which both way increased the amount of Round Up sprayed on farm fields and contributed to canola becoming a super road side weed AND bacillus thurengisis toxin inserted into various crops with the on-off switch stuck permanently ON.  This is toxic to cows when eaten raw.  (Humans usually cook their GMO staples before they eat them, so are much less likely to be affected.).  This also contributes to the evolution of insects resistant to bacillus Thurengisis toxin.

                •  Obfuscation is what Tyson was doing (3+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Richard96816, SilentBrook, gene s

                  when he spoke of selective breeding and genetic engineering as if they're the same thing. Nothing could be further from the truth! The engineering that Monsanto, Dow, Syngenta and Bayer have been doing could never be replicated in nature or through natural breeding methods. How could nature insert a gene from an eel into a plant? Or a virus into a plant? Or get a plant to produce BT toxin?

                  All of the studies showing GE foods to be safe were conducted  or paid for by biotech companies. And every single study questioning the safety or proving the dangers has been independent. So we should ignore independent research in favor of biased fake research?

                  The FDA's own scientists warned that genetically engineering plants that we eat would likely bring about unknown health problems and heretofore unknown food allergies. The FDA muffled them and ignored their findings. And guess what? The experiences of many, many people who have been eating GE (GMO) foods have proven the FDA scientists to be right on the money. Many doctors are handling food allergies in their patients by telling them to eat only organic and their allergies, in more cases than not, are going away.

                  Then there are the super-toxic pesticides the plants are doused with that we eat when we eat the plants (and the animals that eat them). Glyphosate (Roundup) has been found to be the most toxic pesticide ever made and your GMO crops are bathed in it. You can't even wash it off because it's in the cells. Now, just for shits and giggles, the FDA is about to approve a new herbicide that's a mixture of Glyphosate and 2,4-D - Agent Orange. Does anyone want to argue that's safe after seeing the aftermath of Vietnam?

                  My advice to those who think being concerned about GMO foods is idiocy is to go ahead and blindly poison yourselves, but don't try to force the rest of us to die along with you.

              •  You're wrong. (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                indedave

                The claim is that the same sort of anti-scientific rhetoric is used by both groups. That claim has sociological backing.

              •  people who are skeptical of the claims of Monsanto (0+ / 0-)

                That includes everyone. Monsanto is not coincident with GMOs or GMO biological science.

              •  You're the exact type of science denier (3+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                RightHeaded, hfjai, indedave

                being discussed in the post. Of course you want it deleted. Unfortunately for you, science doesn't bend to your whims.

            •  Wow, a blast from the past (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              RightHeaded

              Of course, the folks I called out in that diary were subsequently banned.  But I wasn't.  Doesn't that tell you something?

              "Well, I'm sure I'd feel much worse if I weren't under such heavy sedation..."--David St. Hubbins

              by Old Left Good Left on Wed Aug 06, 2014 at 11:07:11 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

        •  Absolutely unacceptable. (6+ / 0-)

          The post full of bullshit is bad enough, but accusations of shilling absolutely deserve an HR.

          •  What is is unacceptable comparing people (4+ / 0-)

            to global warming deniers. That you would defend that is disgraceful.

            •  The arguments they use (13+ / 0-)

              are absolutely identical.

              Look down the thread and you'll find someone asserting that following scientific literature is a 'blind faith in science', the discussion is replete with people dismissing the existing scientific evidence using arguments every bit as 'valid' as climate deniers and anti-vaxxers.

              The post you UPRATED, accuses people of shilling, personally attacks a DKos member using a Southern stereotype, and insults a prominent scientist, communicator, and champion of science including climate change.

              And yet, where is the counter evidence in that post you felt was so great that it deserved an uprate despite clearly violating the rules? Nowhere, just a hand-waving argument about what surely must be the case, in his non-scientific opinion, despite all of the scientific evidence to the contrary. I mean, surely his non-scientific opinion about the health effects of GMOs must be every bit as valid as the scientific articles contradicting him, because pesticides.

              So yeah, tell me again how 'unacceptable' it is that people ignoring the science, making the same baseless assertions, and piling on the ad-homs instead of evidence be treated similarly to climate deniers who act exactly the same way.

              The evil-ness of Monsanto has no effect on the facts regarding the science of GMOs, and conflating the two doesn't belong on any site that is based in reality.

              That is what is disgraceful, and your uprate of an HR-able post is even worse.

              •  Are you really asserting that the science (6+ / 0-)

                claiming that GMOs are safe is as anywhere near as solid as the science that global warming is a real phenomenon?

                That seems to be the premise of your whole argument. And it is laughably false.

                •  No that's not what I'm claiming. (11+ / 0-)

                  I'm claiming that the scientific assertions made by the anti-GMO people (causes cancer, gluten sensitivity, obesity, diabetes) has no scientific support.

                  I'm claiming that they say the exact same things when scientific publications contradict their beliefs (shills, paid-off, 'blind faith' in science, 'what do they know anyways').

                  And their source of 'expertise' to confirm their beliefs is similarly cherry-picked: (their 'gut', one particular scientist who had to retract a paper, personal anecdotes).

                  Finally, they often argue illogically via consequence: climate change is false, because otherwise you will destroy our economy vs. GMOs are bad for your health because Monsanto, patents, and pesticides.

                  So, now that we have that misunderstanding cleared up maybe you'll understand our point of view.

                  The proportion of peer-reviewed scientific journals that accept climate change vs. those that dismiss it is pretty damn lopsided. like 98% to 2%.

                  Do you have the actual ratios regarding the safety vs. negative health effects of GMOs? Since you claim that the science is no where near as solid, surely you must have some idea.

                •  I will also note (8+ / 0-)

                  that in your reply you absolutely provided no defense for uprating an clearly and absolutely HR'able post.

                  You may agree with some of its points, you may think that the diary is HR'able, or posts comparing climate deniers to anti-GMO folk are unfair, but you can take action on your own to remedy those issues. You have an HR button for posts you think cross the line, and you can certainly open a discussion with people, like myself, who have made that comparison.

                  However, it is has been made clear, and fairly so in my opinion, that accusations of shilling are not acceptable without presenting evidence to support your assertion.

                  Furthermore, the post you uprated is filled with ad-homs, and nasty personal attacks against a specific DKos member.

                  It is, altogether, a reprehensible post even aside from the HR-able statements. You are lessened for uprating it.

                •  Are you really incapable of following logic? (3+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  amoverton, RightHeaded, indedave

                  An assertion that two groups are using the same sort of anti-science rhetoric is not a claim that the science in both areas is equally solid.

                  That seems to be the premise
                  It doesn't seem that way to intellectually honest people.
            •  The ONLY comparison that's made between climate (8+ / 0-)

              deniers and GMO safety skeptics in this diary is that confirmation bias is a problem for both groups -- demonstrated forcefully by the side-by-side AAAS quotes saying that the scientific consensus on both climate change and GMO safety are quite clear.

              Is your argument that somehow GMS safety skeptics are immune from confirmation bias? Or, would you like to share evidence of a "consensus of scientific opinion" on the subject of GMO safety that's different from Tyson's?  Or, as Tyson and the diarist indicate with the confirmation bias problem, does the "consensus of scientific evidence" only constitute persuasive evidence when it agrees with your preexisting beliefs (as with climate change)?  

              That's the ONLY comparison being made here, though its certainly not the first time people have been offended at the idea that the tendency toward confirmation bias applies to them, along with everyone else. That's why the CONSENSUS of scientific opinion is so critical here, absent other considerations (which I have yet to hear) it cuts through the confirmation bias to the heart of the matter.

              Never doubt that a small group of committed people can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. --Margaret Mead

              by The Knute on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 12:40:23 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  That's *not* what the AAAS said (3+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Amycat, indedave, SilentBrook

                Go back and read their actual statement.  I'll agree that they're not totally clear in their emphatic statements, but reading the whole thing in context, it's clear that they meant: "consuming foods containing ingredients derived from GM crops is no riskier than consuming the same foods containing ingredients from crop plants modified by
                conventional plant improvement techniques."

                Ie. they're saying it's safe to eat.  That doesn't mean it's safe for the environment or the future of food production.  And that says nothing about whether it's the safest way to make changes to crops for the betterment of humanity.  

                Tyson says the same thing - they're safe to eat.  That doesn't mean GMOs are safe, or that there aren't safer ways to grow our food.

                All it will take is the first example of genetic traits passing from one GMO plant to a related plant to make it clear that they aren't that safe.  I'm waiting for Round-up ready beans and peas.  Watch what happens when they end up transferring those glyphosate-protective genes to kudzu.

                OTOH, the consensus on climate change is not that it will make individual people less comfortable - it's that it could destroy civilization and the natural environment that humanity needs.  

            •  In is not unacceptable to state the truth (0+ / 0-)

              which is that both groups use the same sort of anti-science rhetoric.

            •  Yeah! That's like comparing (0+ / 0-)

              Fundamentalist Christians to Muslims. You can't do that, right?

              Done with politics for the night? Have a nice glass of wine with Palate Press: The online wine magazine.

              by dhonig on Thu Aug 07, 2014 at 05:02:45 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

        •  HR - if you really believe this - (4+ / 0-)
          And finally, on Daily Kos, we now have a Monsanto contingent making it to the Rec List, shilling for GMO foods.
          take it to the helpdesk.

          “…The day shit is worth money, poor people will be born without an asshole.” – Gabriel Garcí­a Márquez, The Autumn of the Patriarch

          by mikidee on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 11:31:53 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  I Was Going to Uprate - (2+ / 0-)

          But then I saw the word "shilling".
          Although I agree with much of what is in the comment -
          and am rather pissed at the tone of this diary -
          I do not think it is acceptable to accuse those you disagree with as shills.

          •  Disagree with? (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            johnnygunn, dewley notid, cymricmorty

            I don't call accusing people of being comparable to global warming deniers a disagreement.

            I call it an ad hominem attack that has no place here. This diary should be deleted.

            •  Yes - - (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Professor1

              The diary ranks with toe jam and old cat litter, but - -

              •  That's OK jonnygunn (5+ / 0-)

                I let my temper get away from me a bit. Actually though, when I said shilling the first time, I meant it in the old, usual way: "to promote".

                I was not thinking sockpuppets until later down the comment. The more I thought of it, the more plausible it seemed that some shillery was at play here.

                But I don't know that and so it was wrong of me to suggest it.

                I do know that Monsanto has some serious shill operations going. And it is common among said shills to use the same talking points - like anti-GMO people are like global warming deniers.

                But I have no evidence anyone here is shilling. So if I created that impression, I apologize.

              •  Gee... (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                johnnygunn, geri34

                I hope it's not "organic" vegetable based cat litter. That stuff will make your plutonium sludge explode!

                There are three kinds of men. The one that learns by reading. The few who learn by observation. The rest of them have to pee on the electric fence for themselves. - Will Rogers

                by Joieau on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 12:43:42 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

            •  The point of the diary is that confirmation bias (8+ / 0-)

              applies to everyone, including climate deniers and GMO safety skeptics. That's not an ad hominem attack, that's a fact. Its not an insult, either. Confirmation bias is a risk faced by scientists, activists, and advocates of all kinds. Why do you suppose that GMO safety skeptics would somehow be immune to it?

              The diarist cites side-by-side quotes from the AAAS, both citing the science as "clear" on both the issues of climate change and GMO safety.

              Why would we happily use the climate change quote from the AAAS to prove how the climate change deniers are wrong, then pretend that an utterly similar quote from the same organization on GMO safety is something only worthy of ignoring? Do you have contradictory evidence on the consensus of scientific opinion on GMO safety that you'd like to share?  Because othersise, all you're demonstrating here is textbook confirmation bias.

              Never doubt that a small group of committed people can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. --Margaret Mead

              by The Knute on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 12:50:07 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  The Confirmation Bias Argument Works Both Ways (0+ / 0-)

                And can be misused to justify such theories as Lysenkoism. Snow in Copenhagen in winter and the doubters are out in force; yet, a rather minor Hurricane Sandy and the jeremiads of catastrophe abound. Thus, does it simply come down to who has the louder noise machine?

                Skepticism is not necessarily a bad thing
                and blanket acceptance is hardly prudent.

                A shoe salesman is likely to tell me that I need new shoes -
                Just as Monsanto will tell me I need Roundup-Ready soybeans.

                My response - - "Maybe, maybe not."

            •  It's not an ad hominem attack to point out (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              charlatan

              the fact that both groups use the same sort of anti-science rhetoric. Perhaps you should review what "ad hominem" means.

          •  You agree that NdGT is "a fucking idiot"? (4+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Boisepoet, amoverton, charlatan, indedave

            A failed physicist, a PR hack?

            Folks like you and James just add confirm the anti-science attitudes noted in the diary.

        •  Your Tinfoil Hat (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          csm

          Your tinfoil hat fell off sir, you should go retrieve it

        •  You disagree, so you hide rate this diary? (8+ / 0-)

          Sorry, but I thought the side-by-side "consensus of scientific opinion" quotes from the AAAS on both climate change and GMO's was pretty compelling. Not apples and oranges at all, if you put any credibility in what the American Academy for the Advancement of Science has to say about anything.

          And Tyson wasn't disagreeing that Monsanto's businesses practices are anti-competitive, immoral, unethical, or anything else. What he explicitly said was that Monsanto's despicable business practices have nothing to do with either the inherent safety or danger of GMO's. Yet your comment again conflates the two without explanation or rebuttal.

          So lets summarize: First, you hide-rate a diary you disagree with, then you conflate Monsanto's immoral business practices with the global question of the general safety of GMO's, then you personally belittle doc2's comment endorsing Tyson's judgement:

          We have doc2 up there saying essentially (and this is better if you read it with a Duck Dynasty accent):

          'That guy Tye-son is reel smart. If he says eatin' dog shit is good, well, that's enuff fer me.'

          So you tell me, unless you happen to have a PhD in either cellular biology, biochemistry, genetics, or horticulture, precisely how do you suggest that someone form an informed opinion on a technical scientific subject? Doc2 has decided to trust the ability of a world renowned astrophysicist to evaluate the consensus of scientific evidence on the subject.  I can certainly think of worse approaches.

          Tyson and the diarist both indicate (and your comment confirms it in a big way) that some people on both the left and the right are susceptible to confirmation bias, the tendancy to believe whatever affirms their preexisting beliefs and to ignore (or belittle) anything that conflicts with them.  Instead of disproving Tyson, I think your comment serves quite effectively as a case study of the point they're trying to make.

          Never doubt that a small group of committed people can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. --Margaret Mead

          by The Knute on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 11:53:38 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I HR'd the diarist because of the smear (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Crider, flowerfarmer

            Comparing people who are concerned about allowing Monsanto to put pesticide genes in their food with people who deny global warming is an offensive and insipid smear.

            •  GROSS mischaracterization of the diary. (8+ / 0-)

              The operative comparative quotes from the diary are the side-by-side quotes from the AAAS saying that the science for both climate change and GMO safety is "clear." Did you really miss ENTIRELY, the diarists (and Tyson's) point that Monsanto's evil behavior is a DIFFERENT discussion than the state of scientific evidence on the inherent safety or danger associated with GMO's?

              I''m afraid that you utterly mischaracterizing the content of the diary only proves the diarist's point that confirmation bias is alive and well on both sides of the political spectrum. Unless, of course, you'd like to share alternative EVIDENCE on where the consensus of scientific opinion stands on the subject of GMO safety?  

              If, on the other hand, you love the AAAS quote on climate change , but choose to ignore their equivalent quote on GMO's, then you're demonstrating textbook confirmation bias -- which was precisely the diarist's point.

              Never doubt that a small group of committed people can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. --Margaret Mead

              by The Knute on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 01:19:42 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  It's not a "smear" and it's not HRable. (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              indedave

              It's a FACT that both groups use similar anti-science rhetoric. Even if it weren't, it's not HRable.

            •  Go look up "Insipid" please n/t (0+ / 0-)
          •  Well, for Tyson (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            flowerfarmer, Mommymusic, tubaguy

            a PhD in astrophysics seems to be all that is needed in order to form an informed opinion on a technical scientific subject that is not astrophysics. Or physics. Or mathematics.

            Though I must chuckle at this use of a fallacious argument I first encountered in church more than 40 years ago. When I was informed by George (the minister) that if I didn't let him sprinkle my kids with water, God would send them to hell if they died.

            I asked (quite nicely, all things considered) how come his water-flicking skills could control deific behaviors on demand, but my water-flicking skills could not. Given that my kids were bathed regularly and even water-flicked on hot days - by me. He told me it was because his degree was in theology and mine was not.

            I laughed, told him it looked like we worship different gods, as mine didn't go around sending the innocent souls of babies off to eternal torture for not being water-sprinkled by some theology post-grad. Then I left, never to return.

            There are three kinds of men. The one that learns by reading. The few who learn by observation. The rest of them have to pee on the electric fence for themselves. - Will Rogers

            by Joieau on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 12:56:52 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  You missed Tyson's/Diarist's Point ENTIRELY. (5+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              indubitably, kfunk937, DrGaellon, tubaguy, jqb

              Tyson CLEARLY wasn't trading on his status as an astrophysicist to push his admittedly uninformed opinion on these topics. Instead, he was relying on his skills as a reader to read the AAAS consensus of scientific opinion reports on both climate change and GMO safety.  Many here are unfairly belittling him for having an opinion on a topic outside his expertise (which, of course, almost all of us are doing), when the only thing he's saying is "trust the science," as he relies on the singular expertise of the relevant scientific communities that study these issues to understand and synthesize their own research on topics like climate change and GMO safety. Unless, of course, there's other compelling "consensus of the scientific evidence" out there that you'd like to share?

              And, speaking of fallacious comparisons: Are you really going to compare a ministe's religious pronouncements on baptism with Tyson's capacity to read, understand, and then communicate the results of a couple AAAS reports summarizing the state of academic research on these two academic topics? Really?

              Sadly, all I'm seeing here is textbook confirmation bias -- which was precisely the point that Tyson and the diarist were trying to make.

              Never doubt that a small group of committed people can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. --Margaret Mead

              by The Knute on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 01:34:13 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  I've read a number of those AAAS papers too. (3+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                bethann, flowerfarmer, Azehav

                Found them lacking a significant amount of detail about the specific genes, promoters and viral sequences (needed to defeat natural resistance to the insertion of foreign genes into an intact genome) and cloning processes. Proprietary information and all.

                I've also read a number of filings to the FDA by Monsanto and others which were also lacking a significant amount of details claimed as proprietary. I've even seen some of the FDA's own testing of GMOs early in the technology in an attempt to fill in some of those missing details. Back in the days before they simply rubber-stamped new GMO cultivars without even looking at the paperwork, of course. In one it was determined that Monsanto's RR soy produced a number of proteins they hadn't intended to produce, and some were large enough to raise allergy concerns. Which were of course waived by whatever ex-and-future Monsanto wig was in charge of the FDA that day.

                But I'm just another dirty fucking hippie, entirely unlikely to be impressed by hero worship or faith in "The Science" (whatever that means in the world of proprietary ingredients and processes). I don't eat GMOs if I can help it. Looks to me like there's plenty of intellectual snobs around to provide a market for GMOs without any help from dirty fucking hippies. Go. Eat. Enjoy.

                I don't care what you eat, or even if you care what you eat. I see no good reason for you to care what I eat, either.

                There are three kinds of men. The one that learns by reading. The few who learn by observation. The rest of them have to pee on the electric fence for themselves. - Will Rogers

                by Joieau on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 07:12:11 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

        •  pesticides in plants (6+ / 0-)

          A number of plants "naturally" produce chemicals that either repel pests or kill them. Examples - look them up for yourself if you doubt -

          1. Tansy - volatile oil includes 1,8-cineole, trans-thujone, camphor and myrtenol - extremely toxic to animals and arthropods

          2. Derris - roots contain rotenone

          3. Tree Tobacco - contains anabasine similar in chemical structure to nicotine - you know, the stuff implicated in killing off the bees and is a "natural" pesticide a lot of "organic" gardeners and farmers use

          4. Annona - a genus of flowering plants in the pawpaw/sugar apple family - extracts of Annona seeds are used as the active ingredients in insecticides for Helicoverpa and other caterpillar pests

          I'm bored with listing them all. Go look them up yourself. In Wiki, the main header is Insecticide - plant derived.

          These naturally occurring pesticides were the inspiration for the development of techniques to instill similar functionality in domesticated crops - which are notorious for being a lot more susceptible to pests than their wild (and largely inedible) cousins.

          •  We Don't Eat Those! (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Amycat, ozarkspark, gene s

            There are many kinds of plants that we don't eat because they contain pesticides and other harmful compounds.

            Monsanto isn't using the genes of these plants to create plant-created pesticides.  They are using genes of non-plant species that Round-Up does not kill and inserting those genes into plants.

            So, if your point is that Round-Up Ready Corn is "natural" just like Tansy is, well, that's just silly.

            http://www.azzehava.com/

            by Azehav on Wed Aug 06, 2014 at 02:13:38 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  what are blibbering about . . . .? (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              emelyn

              The Roundup-Ready gene came from a plain ole ordinary weed that had already naturally developed resistance to Roundup, during the 20 years Roundup was sprayed on crops before GMO plants ever even existed.

              Jeebus, I wish the fringers would at least learn about the topic before they blither about it.  (sigh)

              In the end, reality always wins.

              by Lenny Flank on Wed Aug 06, 2014 at 02:25:19 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

          •  Human made pesticides compared to naturally (0+ / 0-)

            occurring elements, which keep pests from damaging a certain plant, thus letting it produce more?  Just because it is bad for the pest, to me, doesn't mean it is bad for me.  How about the flea & tick killer, Frontline, you dribble on a dog's back, it enters the dog's blood stream and ends up killing the fleas and ticks causing them to drop off, instead of trying to remove each one, by hand.  It's not harming the dog, but it sure takes care of the ticks and fleas!  I have personally seen this work.  Someone dropped a dog of by us and abandoned it.  The poor dog, who had over 40-50 ticks on him, some of them, the big gray ones, made him so anemic, he could hardly walk!  He had long fur, which made it difficult to find the tiny ones.  Also you are not really supposed to just pull them off and maybe leave their heads in the dogs skin.  We dribbled Frontline flea and tick killer on his skin, just behind his head, on his neck.  Within a few days, all the fleas and ticks dropped off.  The so-called "pesticide", which is genetically engineered into the plant, to me, is just something which will affect the pest and not humans.  I don't have a problem with Genetically Modified foods, what I do have a problem with is a company which purposely sells a seed to someone, be it a farmer or someone, in Africa, who depends on using some of the seed of this years crop, to plant next year, so they don't have to buy seeds every year.  If a plant can be genetically modified to fight off pests and produce more, I am all for it and it don't bother me or make me afraid it is going to be harmful to me.  I tried reading all the comments of this diary and since I don't have as much education as some of you seem to have, I can't understand all of your comments or make sense of any of it.  I don't pretend to know a lot and I am not going to try and make it sound like I am an expert on anything.   If something is genetically engineered to keep pests away from a plant, thus eliminating the need to use a spray on pesticide, like Roundup, wouldn't it be worth it?  It would make it unnecessary to use spray on pesticides, risking the residue getting into our food and also lessen the need to use them in the first place, also lessening the chance of spills of it, as it is being sprayed, which could get into our water supply, lakes and streams.  If it is naturally occurring in the plant, it would not be necessary to spray it on or inject it into the soil and would achieve the same goal of keeping the pest away.  I guess the scariest part is calling it a pesticide, which I don't think it really is.

            •  BTW, Frontline is a bad example ... (0+ / 0-)

              since dogs and cats don't live as long as humans, generally, so certain long term effects might not manifest in dogs and cats. And anyway, when it comes to flea and tick control for pets, the commercial market caters more to the convenience of the pet owner than the long term health of the pet.

              We only use Frontline on our 1 feral rehab cat who lives in a kennel outside (because he sprays). My other cats are indoor only and then we don't need to use pesticides on them or around inside the house.

              And the Frontline package warns people to not get it on their own skin.

        •  GMO (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          geri34, Azehav, Amycat, SilentBrook

          Congrats KOS you have now gone over to the other side. Tyson may know a lot about the cosmos but he does not know shit about food. Monsanto seeds use a pesticide named Roundup. Its forerunner was Agent Orange. Ask the people of Vietnam if Agent Orange was good for them. Doctors and Nutritionists tell us to avoid eating food with pesticides and opt for organic. I would rather take my food and nutrition advise from those whose head is down here on the planet. Even the White House has gone organic. Tysons kind of science told us it was good to put antibiotics in farm animals. NO problem. That is until we now have antibiotic resistant disease and infections.  Growth Hormones were good and gave us our food faster. Now we have our children maturing before they should. Monsanto and its ilk have given us so many health issues were are going to have to deal with. If it is so damn good why does Monsanto fight so hard to keep us from knowing which foods contain GMO. They have even sued VT for having the audacity to inform their people what they are eating through a new label law. So KOS go home tonight and raise a glass of Roundup in toast of your defection to the bat shit crazy right wingers.

          •  "the other side"? (4+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            dconrad, Boisepoet, amoverton, emelyn

            DKos in the side of rationality, something sorely missing from your comment.

          •  oh for fucks sake . . . . (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Boisepoet, indedave, Ender
            Monsanto seeds use a pesticide named Roundup. Its forerunner was Agent Orange.
            Roundup was used on non-GMO crops for two decades before GMO crops ever even existed.

            Roundup doesn't have stuff-all to do with "Agent Orange". Agent Orange was a blend of two herbicides called 2,4-D and 2,4,5-T. Neither of those are toxic to humans, btw--the toxin came from a contaminant called dioxin that was accidentally produced as a part of the manufacturing process. Roundup is made from glyphosate, a chemical which disables a particular protein that is found in plant cells. Glyphosate does not effect anything (including people) which does not have that particular plant protein.

            Why oh why why why do people blither stupidly about topics they don't know anything about?  (sigh)

            In the end, reality always wins.

            by Lenny Flank on Wed Aug 06, 2014 at 02:29:09 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  A correction (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            SirReal

            Roundup is a herbicide, not a pesticide. It inhibits and prevents weed growth which can hinder the soybeans' growth and thus the harvest yield.

          •  There is no Roundup in the seeds (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            serendipityisabitch

            Roundup only kills plants. The only reason you would put Roundup in seeds would be if you were afraid that other plants were eating the seeds.

            I've seen things you people wouldn't believe. Attack ships on fire off the shoulder of Orion. I watched c-beams glitter in the dark near the Tannhäuser Gate.

            by Ender on Thu Aug 07, 2014 at 02:21:26 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  There is so much error on so many levels in that (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Boisepoet

          comment ...

        •  "produce a pesticide" (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          dconrad, Boisepoet
          altered the genes of some food plants to make them actually PRODUCE A PESTICIDE
          Many plants produce pesticides ... it's what one would expect of evolution.

          Talk about "wrong about everything" ... it's hard to find a sentence in that post that isn't wrong in more than one way.

          •  that pesticide is Bt, which was already being (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            jqb, Ender

            sprayed on crops since the 1920's. Bt works by attacking a particular protein found in the stomachs of insects. If you are not an insect and do not have that protein, Bt does nothing at all to you.

            In the end, reality always wins.

            by Lenny Flank on Wed Aug 06, 2014 at 02:30:52 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  Um (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          CelticOm

          Listen, man, I have to tell you that even if all of the information you present as fact in this post is true, I couldn't care less, because the way you're going about arguing your point makes you come off like a huge dick.

          Take out the ad hominem attacks, turn down the angry, confrontational language, and let your data argue for you if you want to win people to your cause who aren't already on your side.

        •  Anyone? (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          indedave

          Did you really write:

          "Anyone using this smear, is either a Monsanto sockpuppet, or a natural born sleazebag."

          I am strongly opposed to patenting seeds, producing seeds that are 'roundup ready' and a lot of other things related to GMO's. But you convinced me to send this 'smear' far and wide.

        •  AMEN (0+ / 0-)

          Not to mention that his comment isn't even scientifically correct.

          http://www.azzehava.com/

          by Azehav on Wed Aug 06, 2014 at 01:46:45 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  For future refernce: (0+ / 0-)

          Any time you get to a sentence that starts, "You don't have to be a scientist to know . . .", it's a safe bet that you should delete the post before you embarrass yourself further.

        •  Agree (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Grabber by the Heel, gene s

          1)  GMO is different from plant crosses, that is the corn to corn crosses, or wheat the wheat.  There are not genes from other species in the mix.

          2)  I don't want to eat pesticides in any form and want to know if they are in my food.  If it's safe then let those who say that label their products.  

          3)  I plan to buy food that has the No GMO label and approval.  If others wish to eat pesticides and fish genes in their apples (or whatever) that's OK with me.

          4)  I know there's a real danger that the GMO genes will escape into the standard food supply but, you know, I think that the Earth is doomed to fail to support many humans anyway.  We're dumbasses all.

        •  Wow. Proving Tyson RIGHT on so many levels. Epi... (0+ / 0-)

          Wow. Proving Tyson RIGHT on so many levels. Epic! Lol...

          Yea we should believe people on Daily Kos with opinions above scientists.....muh huh...ssuuuurre.

        •  u undermine ur argument by ur personal attacks (0+ / 0-)

          a 'failed physicist'?? seriously? the guy's got 17 honorary doctorates, for chrissake.

        •  at last (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          FactsPrevail, chazan, SilentBrook, gene s

          a post that takes this article to task.

          Of course "artificial selection (plant these seeds instead of these, etc)" is nothing like changing DNA so the plant produces a pesticide and thereby increasing the need for herbicides, done not over thousands of years by farmers but by profit-driven corporations, seeking ways to sell you both the seed and the herbicide.

          There has never been long term studies on GMO foods, but we know that there are studies showing they are  harmful to the environment.

          Tyson is correct that almost all foods now have GMOs, especially in mead production, where 97% of cattle, for instance, are factory farmed, meaning they are fed exclusively GMO soy and corn, and of the remaining 2.7% which are "pasture fed," it is legal to use such claims while using up to 20% GMO corn and soy.

          Organic meat, the only choice avoiding GMO contamination, is 0.3% of the market, affordable only by the well-off as a regular diet item.  

          At the very least, labeling should be mandatory, but a key to the problem is that Monsanto has basically captured the government involved with its products and has even sought a Federal law outlawing state laws which  require labeling.

          This is a profit-driven perversion of food production which has taken over basic industries through political engineering  enabled by the control the industry has over the laws and govt agencies involved.

          In the end, the GMO matrix is Frankenstein.....at a bare minimum, it should be required to prove its safety and be labeled so that consumers can choose.

          As a total alternative, I recommend transitioning to an organic, plant-based diet.  Just withdraw from the whole system.  

        •  Thank you (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          FactsPrevail

          for cutting through the bullshit.

        •  Yep, this is conservative thinking at its worst. (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          serendipityisabitch, Joffan

          You trash the reputation of anyone who doesn't think exactly the way that you do.

          You argue with a high degree of emotion and completely devoid of facts.

          You assert a single issue (genetic modification to provide systemic pesticide) as if it represents the entire array of possible modifications and consequences.

          "Our bodies didn't evolve over millions of years eating these genetically modified organisms."

          If you'll look at historical population estimates, you'll notice that we (homo sapiens) evolved over a rather long time, but only flourished during the last, say, 15,000 years (as represented by rapid population growth) with the development of agriculture, which was the beginning of our systematic modification of food through selective genetics. The fact that we didn't KNOW that we were doing GMO 15,000 years ago is irrelevant.

          My entire life (67 years) has been a litany of "unseen consequences" and I'm certain that most of the remainder of my life will be the same. If I feared all unseen consequences, I'd just curl up in the fetal position in bed and stay there. That's no way to live.

          You need to engage in some truly liberal thinking for a change.

        •  Great post! (1+ / 1-)
          Recommended by:
          bethann
          Hidden by:
          Joffan

          Tyson damaged his credibility right from the start, by pretending that modifying an organism's characteristics by selective breeding, and inserting poisonous genes from an unrelated species are the same thing.

          And there's LOTS of research (which this article pretends doesn't exist) that GMOs are harmful.

          And finally the bottom line: THESE GMO STRAINS HAVEN'T BEEN AROUND LONG ENOUGH TO KNOW ALL THE HARM THEY COULD CAUSE!

          Anyone who tells you they KNOW GMOs are safe is a liar.

          These GMOs are being rammed down our throats by corrupt corporate-government alliances.  There's a word for that, but it escapes me at the moment.

          •  There IS a word for that, or actually two. (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            kfunk937

            and they start with the letters CT.

            Anyone who does the experiments and verifies that there is no harm from a GMO is not a liar to say so. Nor are the people who recognize good science being done and back it up.

            And finally there is in fact no credible research that show that GMOs are harmful. But there are a lot of noise-making sites that pretend there is.

            This is not a sig-line.

            by Joffan on Thu Aug 07, 2014 at 03:46:41 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  Actually, you DO need to be a scientist (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          kfunk937

          "You don't have to be a scientist to know that there are risks inherent in such radical alterations of the foods we eat."

          This is the key sentence in your rant.  This is science denialism plain and simple.  You assume that your beliefs are correct regardless of the scientific evidence, because you don't need some egghead intellectual telling you that GMO's are safe (sounds like the Tea Party, doesn't it?).  

          Before you throw your ad hominems at me (corporate shill!  fascist!), let me state that while I don't think GMO's should be banned, I do think that corporate control of our food supply is problematic, more research on all reasons of concern should be publicly funded and independently verified, and lawsuits against farmers who have GMOs blown into their fields are idiotic.  None of this requires that I ignore the scientific evidence.  If the evidence someday shows that GMO crops are unhealthy for human consumption, then I will support appropriate policy responses.  But I won't oppose GMO's just because you're scared by the idea of them.  

          Please prove my doubts about you wrong by not resorting to personal attacks.  I criticized your ideas, not you.  Please respond in kind.  Thank you.

        •  Juglone - you've heard of this, yes? (0+ / 0-)

          If not:  http://en.wikipedia.org/...

          Where, pray tell, do you think they found the genetic precursor for those genes? The moon?

          Where do you think, when we figure out how to do it, will we get the genes to replace the BRAC1 gene? Strengthen the weak section of gene in Fragile X carriers?

          Understand and study the research before you spew conspiracy theories and get mistaken for climate change denier or flath earth society member.

        •  Does "organic" mean "pesticide and herbicide free" (0+ / 0-)

          Because if it did, we'd not need rhe additional GMO label.
          On the other hand, Monsanto's use of GMO is sufficiently pernicious that perhaps it dominates the field, and the theoretical virtues of GMO for the rest of us, are absent.

    •  I thought you were going somewhere else. (8+ / 0-)

      That a career in cosmology doesn't provide expertise in the technology of agricultural genetic modification, and therefore this form of ad hominem argument (in which the hominem is praised rather than attacked) is not logical.

    •  Do you realize how this sounds (15+ / 0-)
      One of the most difficult of physics specialties is cosmology. The mathematics involved, using unusual geometries and requiring real dexterity with general relativity, is amongst the most difficult across the scientific spectrum
      Followed by:
      Anyhow, I'm a big fan of the guy and if he thinks GMOs are cool, that's good fucking enough for me.
      So if you meet a bright and articulate zoologist you will take his/her musings on solid state physics that conflict with the conclusions of experts in the field because "good enough".

      Seriously?

      •  Tyson is not in conflict (34+ / 0-)

        with experts in the field.  Experts in the field agree the GMO technology is safe.  Did you read this part?

        The science is quite clear: crop improvement by the modern molecular techniques of biotechnology is safe … The World Health Organization, the American Medical Association, the U.S. National Academy of Sciences, the British Royal Society, and every other respected organization that has examined the evidence has come to the same conclusion: consuming foods containing ingredients derived from GM crops is no riskier than consuming the same foods containing ingredients from crop plants modified by conventional plant improvement techniques.

        Light is seen through a small hole.

        by houyhnhnm on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 05:50:19 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  that's a distinct point (7+ / 0-)

          Tyson's remarks on GMOs seem reasonable to me. "I'm a big fan of the guy and if he thinks GMOs are cool, that's good fucking enough for me" is definitely not on that level. (Of course, it was just a DKos comment.)

          "Democracy is a political system for people who are not sure they are right." —E. E. Schattschneider

          by HudsonValleyMark on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 05:55:45 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  He certainly is (36+ / 0-)

          This is not settled science by any means and he failed to respond in substance and fact to the problems critics have raised.

          But, shit, the guy is an astrophysicist, right. And on TV.

          You don't understand the problems either, apparently; it is not about "food safety", but about biodiversity, pollution of the environment and, ultimately, economics and the privatization of nature.

          You may refer to my comments elsewhere that elaborate.

          •  Thank you for identifying my science weaknesses (48+ / 0-)

            Except that Ph.D. hanging on my wall from one of the top universities in a very complex area of biological sciences says otherwise.

            As I wrote, people fucking love science unless it fucking doesn't support their beliefs.

            Skepticism is evaluating the quality and quantity of evidence to reach a conclusion. It is not gathering evidence to support a closed minded conclusion.

            by SkepticalRaptor on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 06:15:30 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  I might believe GMO is safe to eat (31+ / 0-)

              but I don't think privatization of commonwealth resources is good for society.

              Get rid of the patenting, prosecuting of farmers, destruction of plant varieties, etc. and I could be okay with GMO. I am not going to live forever, but I don't think GMO is going to kill me.

              (And what's with the scientist attitude, aren't you scientists supposed to be critical thinkers?)

              •  once again, I get to repeat my: (76+ / 0-)

                Why I Am Against Monsanto and Its Use of GMOs:

                 (1) Monsanto (and other corporations) use them as weapons to crush competitors, to establish vertical monopolies and control entire industries, and to lock the entire agrarian sector into a semi-feudal relationship of dependency.

                (2) NOBODY has any moral or social right to patent natural products which they didn't invent, for private profit.

                (3) Monsanto has NO moral or social right to tell people who buy their product how that product can or cannot be used, or to control how its product is used by the end user after it has been purchased.

                (4) Monsanto's efforts to keep tight controls over all information about its products and how they are being used, is intolerable in any democracy.

                Monsanto's practices would still draw my opposition even if they were selling Tiddley-Winks instead of GMOs.

                BUT.........

                All of the "science" arguments I have seen from the anti-science fringe of the GMO fight have been bullshit. Every one of them.  From "GMOs cause cancer!!!" to "GMOs are less nutritious!!!" to "GMOs cause superweeds !!!", they are all demonstrably not true.  Wrong.  Incorrect. Baloney. Bullshit. Horse pucky.

                And the whole "science is just a corporate conspiracy !!!!" thingie is just idiotic.  it's the same crapola the global-warming deniers, creationists and anti-vaxxers try to sell.

                There are plenty of good reason to fight Monsanto and its use of GMOs.  We don't need to make stupid shit up.

                In the end, reality always wins.

                by Lenny Flank on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 06:53:31 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  I imagine your "Ctrl, C, & V" keys are in high use (25+ / 0-)

                  Exactly how I feel.  Monsanto sucks.  They fucking suck.  Fucking cartel.

                  But the science behind GMOs is totally fine.

                  "Give me a lever long enough... and I shall move the world." - Archimedes

                  by mconvente on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 07:25:21 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                •  The arguments do seem a bit unclear (22+ / 0-)

                  I worked as a researcher for many years in a field not even remotely connected with GMO research or production.  From my perspective, every e-mail I've received, every petition I've been asked to sign essentially ignores scientific discussion of the risks and focuses on the corporation behind the technology.

                  I believe that Monsanto is one of those evil corporations which epitomizes all that is wrong with unscrupulous corporate greed.  That is not an indictment of the science, it is an indictment of the source.

                  While it's possible that future mods could turn out to be problematic, there doesn't seem to be any indication of that at this point.  You're right Lenny, let's leave the stupid shit to the climate change deniers and anti-vaxxers.

                  •  sadly, most of the anti-science fringe doesn't (11+ / 0-)

                    actually know enough science to fill the back of a postage stamp, even if they drew lots of pictures.  They simply repeat what they read on some crapsite without actually understanding any of it. They don't even know what an "allele" is.  (shrug)

                    That is, alas, true of EVERY ideologue anti-science crackpot, from creationists to anti-vaxxers to "cellphones cause brain cancer" loons.

                    This whole "debate" isn't about science at all.  It's about anti-corporate ideology that has been taken to a John Birch Society level of conspiracy theory silliness. It should have no place in a "reality-based community".

                    In the end, reality always wins.

                    by Lenny Flank on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 08:11:44 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  I read somewhere (2+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      sethtriggs, indubitably

                      that the cellphone panic was actually caused by an allergic reaction to something in the casings of early phones. This would explain why only some people got headaches. (the cancer stuff was just panic, and obscured any real study of the situation) They stopped using whatever it was and the scare stopped.
                      Duh.
                      BTW, I have what the WHO calls (or called) level 2 skeletal fluorosis - essentially arthritis, caused by long term childhood exposure to what is today acknowledged to be toxic dosages. But look it up - underneath the serious evidence (and even facts) there is a mountain of rabid fearmongering lies, and btw, a second mountain of denialism.  My life would be noticeably better if my dentist could safely admit to legitimate issues rather than feel he has to defend his profession from another wacko.

                    •  Being for the labeling of GMO foods does not (4+ / 0-)

                      make one automatically one of the anti-science fringe.  And wanting labeling does not make me. Or others stupid. Less anger and vituperation might make your otherwise thoughtful remarks more acceptable and less off putting.

                      Patriotism may be the last refuge of scoundrels, but religion is assuredly the first.

                      by StrayCat on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 09:06:53 AM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  I have no gripe with labeling (6+ / 0-)

                        My gripe is with using anti-science arguments that are demonstrably wrong, to GET labeling.

                        And yes, shouting "science is a corporate conspiracy !!!!" and "Dr Tyson is a shill for Monsanto!!!" is anti-science fringery.  By definition.  It is exactly the kind of thing the anti-vaxxers and the creationists do.

                        In the end, reality always wins.

                        by Lenny Flank on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 10:01:17 AM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  You should have a gripe with labeling. (2+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          Boisepoet, Paul Rogers

                          Labeling has driven GMOs out of the market in Europe ... that's what it's for. It of course does not give consumers useful information, it just plays on their prejudices.

                          •  I don't think labels will have much effect here (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            Ender

                            Most people simply don't give a damn about them and won't pay any attention to them. Just like they ignore those calorie labels we fought so long and hard to get.

                            And I think labels will backfire on the fringers anyway. Virtually everything edible in the US contains GMO corn or soy, so if the fringers plan to boycott labelled food or whatever, they will find themselves in the position of asking people not to eat . . . well . . . almost everything. Boycotts never work anyway, but this one is particularly fated to fall flat on its face.

                            And I suspect that once people see with their own eyes that virtually everything they eat every day is GMO and none of it is killing them (or producing any noticeable effect whatsoever), they'll realize for themselves that the fringers are just full of shit. (shrug)

                            In the end, reality always wins.

                            by Lenny Flank on Wed Aug 06, 2014 at 02:05:48 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  No--sorry but--NO (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            SilentBrook

                            No--sorry--but--NO

                            What it DOES do is allow us to have CONTROL over what we eat and what we feed our kids ---just like the labels for ORGANIC do.

                            It is a TOOL nothing more.

                            If you them CHOOSE to NOT use this food product--and thus drive it OFF the market---well that should SAY something about how the product is perceived.  

                            And in part=-it IS perceived as voodoo BECAUSE of how Monsanto et al have been BAD NEIGHBORS and BULLIES.

                            Any time a large corporation feels the need to SUE a State over a perfectly LEGAL issue--labeling of contents---then there is something very wrong with that companies image and marketing.  

                            I have been involved in a LOT of things where the rallying cry is "This is what they are doing in Europe"  and know enough to think twice on that.  Europe is SO much farther ahead of us (maybe it is their education systems???)  on these things that I DO take this seriously.  Do I take it as a blanket way to accept an idea?  No.  I do my homework,

                            But I do NOT want the DECISION of what I CHOOSE to put on the table taken AWAY by Monsanto or any OTHER company.  

                            Maybe because I live within shouting distance of Vermont and shop there I see this a bit differently.  

                          •  Yes. (0+ / 0-)

                            I stated a fact, your leaning on the caps key notwithstanding.

                      •  I think labeling should be required (2+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        CenPhx, flowerfarmer

                        Whether you believe GMO's are dangerous or not we still have the right to know what the source of our food is.  I'm not freaked out by GMO's specifically but I have very little confidence that big agriculture is out of ideas for what what constitutes a "food product" and this pass that they seem to have been given is not a great idea by any means.

                    •  Why do people conflate science with technology? (6+ / 0-)

                      I got my scientific education in the Ag school at Cornell, and there is no lack of people with scientific knowledge who don't trust modern agricultural technology, and we were working with GMOs!

                      Carl Sagan, whose old house I drive past almost daily, wrote a book about how people don't trust science because of superstition, while ignoring all the science that points to our current tool kit of technologies being unsustainable. He also did an interview with our local paper in which he said he wasn't afraid to die, because he was sure that science would find the technology to save his life first. I read that and thought to myself, "Measure that guy a coffin." He was dead within the year.

                      It takes a little science to figure out how to do something, a little more to do it well, and a whole shit load of science to figure out the consequences of doing it. Due to the law of No Free Lunch, if you don't do that science, you will fall under the Law of Unintended Consequences. And what do you call it when you know the consequences but you do it anyway, because the consequences will fall on someone else? Too bad goes around comes around doesn't always come back to the guy who started it.

                      Cracker(krăk´ẽr ) Someone, usually but not exclusively white, whose world view is primarily formed by consensual validation as opposed to observed fact, hence “cracker” for someone brittle, insubstantial and lacking in nutritive value.

                      by outis2 on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 09:26:34 AM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                    •  Oh, and I wish Tyson could read Lenny's post (2+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      OldDragon, PhotoElect

                      Please note that, although Tyson agrees that Monsanto is a bad actor in this situation and should be attacked, this poster is already immunized against that argument by his own political ideology. Thanks, Lenny, you're my case in point.

                      Cracker(krăk´ẽr ) Someone, usually but not exclusively white, whose world view is primarily formed by consensual validation as opposed to observed fact, hence “cracker” for someone brittle, insubstantial and lacking in nutritive value.

                      by outis2 on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 09:31:43 AM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  whut? (2+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        indubitably, kfunk937

                        Are you saying that Lenny has been immunized against the argument that Monsanto is a bad actor and should be attacked?

                        But Lenny has said that himself.

                        "Democracy is a political system for people who are not sure they are right." —E. E. Schattschneider

                        by HudsonValleyMark on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 09:33:41 AM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  Now I'm confused (0+ / 0-)
                          This whole "debate" isn't about science at all.  It's about anti-corporate ideology that has been taken to a John Birch Society level of conspiracy theory silliness. It should have no place in a "reality-based community".
                          What is it that Lenny is admitting here? He appears to be dismissing critiques of Monsanto as being silliness.

                          Cracker(krăk´ẽr ) Someone, usually but not exclusively white, whose world view is primarily formed by consensual validation as opposed to observed fact, hence “cracker” for someone brittle, insubstantial and lacking in nutritive value.

                          by outis2 on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 09:38:31 AM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                          •  read around (3+ / 0-)

                            Lenny has his own critique of Monsanto, which he distinguishes from arguments about the inherent dangers of GMOs.

                            Part of the problem is that actually there is more than one debate. So when Lenny says what "the whole 'debate'" is about, he is basically right or wildly wrong depending on how one construes "whole." (That's how I think about it, at any rate.)

                            "Democracy is a political system for people who are not sure they are right." —E. E. Schattschneider

                            by HudsonValleyMark on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 09:49:39 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  I wasn't considering Lenny's whole body of work (0+ / 0-)

                            but he obviously isn't taking his own "opposition" to Monsanto very seriously, plus why accuse people who have your same attitude towards Monsanto of being conspiracy theorists? He obviously attacks people who know more than he does. His dislikes are more apparent than his likes and his dislikes go in a particular direction. Given the choice between what he knows is a bad corporation and a scientist he disagrees with, he ends up calling bullshit on the scientist. In a similar situation, I'd rather give more support to the scientist than the corporation.

                            Cracker(krăk´ẽr ) Someone, usually but not exclusively white, whose world view is primarily formed by consensual validation as opposed to observed fact, hence “cracker” for someone brittle, insubstantial and lacking in nutritive value.

                            by outis2 on Thu Aug 07, 2014 at 10:43:39 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  (sigh) there is no one so blind as he who will not (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            rduran

                            see.

                            A five year old could read my post and understand exactly what I said.

                            Of course that five year old would have to NOT be blinded by a silly CT conspiracy theory who sees enemies behind every tree.  (sigh)

                            In the end, reality always wins.

                            by Lenny Flank on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 10:02:51 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  "critiques of Monsanto" (0+ / 0-)

                            There is no mention of critiques of Monsanto in what you quoted.

                            You are proving Lenny's point.

                          •  What else is "anti-corporate ideology"? (0+ / 0-)

                            Cracker(krăk´ẽr ) Someone, usually but not exclusively white, whose world view is primarily formed by consensual validation as opposed to observed fact, hence “cracker” for someone brittle, insubstantial and lacking in nutritive value.

                            by outis2 on Thu Aug 07, 2014 at 10:44:27 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                      •  "Why I Am Against Monsanto and Its Use of GMOs" (0+ / 0-)

                        Lenny wrote that, followed by 4 points supporting it. So maybe you need to work on your reading (and thinking) skills.

                •  This ^^^^^^^ x100 (19+ / 0-)

                  The arguments about GMO's are much more moral ones than scientific ones, and by spending time and effort on bad science we'd be better served focusing on the moral issues that companies like Monsanto have.

                  There's plenty out there to criticize about the Big Pharma companies and Big Ag companies without wandering off into the weeds searching for a metaphorical GMO Bigfoot.

                •  Glad to see someone separate monsanto from GMOs... (10+ / 0-)

                  Glad to see someone separate monsanto from GMOs in general. Monsanto needs to go down hard due to its business practices, not because of GMOs in general.

                •  sums up my views re GMO/Monsanto pretty well (4+ / 0-)

                  and tipped accordingly.

                  "As soon as the land of any country has all become private property, the landlords, like all other men, love to reap where they never sowed, and demand a rent even for its natural produce." - Adam Smith: The Wealth of Nations

                  by ozsea1 on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 07:24:13 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                •  Then Your Fight Is With (3+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  1BQ, R30A, indubitably

                  Monsanto, not the overall concept of genetic modification. I wholeheartedly agree with your complaints against Monsanto. I would suspect Dr DeGrasse-Tyson would agree as well. But, as he said, focus on your true concern. Let's not operate under a hypothesis that all GMO food is bad because Monsanto is bad. Virtually everything you eat has been modified from the original. And that includes so-called "Organic" products. Even if you grow your own vegetables, the current varieties of seeds have been modified. They're safe. Monsanto is dangerous.

                  "All that is necessary for the triumph of Evil is that good men do nothing." --Edmund Burke

                  by Phosbrite on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 07:44:54 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  perhaps you should read my comment again (2+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    rduran, indubitably

                    and focus on the last three paragraphs . . . .

                    ;)

                    In the end, reality always wins.

                    by Lenny Flank on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 07:46:24 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                  •  You don't need to guess about Tyson (2+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    OldDragon, flowerfarmer

                    In the diary, Tyson is quoted as saying he finds Monsanto in general and its practices in particular as morally wrong. I would go further and say the practices have scientifically provable bad consequences. Check out Vandana Shiva.

                    Cracker(krăk´ẽr ) Someone, usually but not exclusively white, whose world view is primarily formed by consensual validation as opposed to observed fact, hence “cracker” for someone brittle, insubstantial and lacking in nutritive value.

                    by outis2 on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 09:42:22 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                •  Exactly. (0+ / 0-)

                  Listen to the chair leg of truth! It does not lie! What does it say?

                  by mhanch on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 08:12:58 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                •  OK, not all your points are right (4+ / 0-)

                  First of all, I've seen the study that a particular GMO causes cancer and that is not at the point you can reject it out of hand and the rejection of the paper was a response to pressure. The evidence that the pollen of corn with BT toxin is toxic to the butterflies that eat it is also can't be rejected and even stands to reason. The current two year population crash in the Monarch Butterfly population is being blamed on over use of Roundup in fields that would previously be tilled: tilling won't kill the milkweed that Monarchs rely on, but Roundup has reduced the milkweed population dramatically. That basically points to people using roundup instead of tilling, i.e., more chemicals and, as much as I love Roundup, the stickers and spreaders in the stuff you spray are pretty nasty and roundup degradation products aren't great, either. That the overuse of Roundup is already creating super weeds is admitted by Monsanto, which is already coming up with new chemical cocktails to kill Roundup resistant weeds. That round up resistant soy and canola were turning up as weeds was in the industry literature years ago. Certain GMOs may be less nutritious, but the impact of the GMOs on diet is bad: the GMO currently produced are all designed to make cheap processed food even cheaper. I'm not going to go into BST milk, but if you think it's just like regular milk, you've been lied to.

                  In the end, the resistance to GMO's is based on two rational principles. One is the law of unintended consequences. Industry always resists doing enough science to know what the consequences of a technology will be, because that cuts into their profits. The other is the law of "Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me."  Plus, face it, complicated arguments based on sociology go over most people's heads, and the really vital thing here is to wrest control of the food production system out of the hands of the monopolies.

                  Cracker(krăk´ẽr ) Someone, usually but not exclusively white, whose world view is primarily formed by consensual validation as opposed to observed fact, hence “cracker” for someone brittle, insubstantial and lacking in nutritive value.

                  by outis2 on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 09:12:33 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  you are wrong (4+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    rduran, emelyn, T100R, kfunk937

                    There is no valid scientific study concluding that GMOs cause cancer, or anything else.  The only such study in a peer-reviewed journal was Seralini's, and it was withdrawn because his own data proved it was horseshit.

                    The "monarchs are killed by GMO" is also bullshit: there was a study made on the matter, which found that there simply is not enough GMO pollen on any plants to kill the caterpillars:

                    http://www.ars.usda.gov/...

                    Two major questions needed to be answered to determine whether there was any actual risk to monarch caterpillars from the Bt pollen:

                     How much Bt corn pollen does it take before there are any toxic effects on caterpillars?

                     What is the likelihood that caterpillars might be exposed to that much pollen?

                    The studies in this project showed that monarch caterpillars have to be exposed to pollen levels greater than 1,000 grains/cm2 to show toxic effects.

                    Caterpillars were found to be present on milkweed during the one to two weeks that pollen is shed by corn, but corn pollen levels on milkweed leaves were found to average only about 170 pollen grains/cm2 in corn fields.

                    Reports from several field studies show concentrations much lower than that even within the cornfield. In Maryland, the highest level of pollen deposition was inside and at the edge of the corn field, where pollen was found at about 50 grains/cm2. In the Nebraska study, pollen deposition ranged from 6 grains/cm2 at the field edge to less than 1 grain/cm2 beyond 10 meters. Samples collected from fields in Ontario immediately following the period of peak pollen shed showed pollen concentrations averaged 78 grains at the field edge.

                    And there is nbo study showing that GMOs differ nutritionally from non-GMOs.

                    There is no GMO milk.

                    In the end, reality always wins.

                    by Lenny Flank on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 10:08:32 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  HOw much--- (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      herc67

                      Exactly how MUCH milkweed is IN  a cornfield--when the corn is GROWING there?

                      I live in farm country (Washington County NY)  and we grow TREMENDOUS amounts of corn here.  No self respecting farmer is going to have more than a few milkweed plants on the EDGE of the field.  So--this argument doesn't wash and is not based in reality.  

                      So--no milkweed is IN that cornfield and where did they GET this "data"?

                      Next to the cornfield is a different matter---and depending on time of day and wind and temps corn might not have released the pollen--grains of which are quite large and can be easily seen--so this too is suspect.

                      All of this seems---not exactly a true scientific way to prove the milkweed/corn pollen/monarch connection.  

                      I DO know from observation that there are fewer and fewer monarchs EACH year--and I leave ALL milkweed growing and for a number of years no corn has been grown very close to us.  I don't think Roundup et al is used on hay crops.  So where ARE the monarchs?  We SHOULD have bunches.  We---don't.  Anymore.  

                      •  you are babbling (0+ / 1-)
                        Recommended by:
                        Hidden by:
                        herc67

                        In the end, reality always wins.

                        by Lenny Flank on Wed Aug 06, 2014 at 06:48:34 PM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                      •  No, not in the field, in the untilled area of the (0+ / 0-)

                        field. I didn't explain the impact of Roundup vs. tilling because I figured people were going to get bored anyway. I did above and now don't want to repeat myself. Please see above. Connections was made by Karen Oberhauser and are being accepted around publications like New Scientist. http://experts.umn.edu/...  is an abstract of the paper.

                        I'm not talking about pollen killing monarchs. I put two different things too close together. Bt toxin corn is one kind of pollen and kills insects who collect pollen. Yes, I know, it is wind pollenated, but that doesn't mean insects don't eat it. Roundup ready crops are having an impact on Milkweed, which monarch caterpillers eat. Monarch butterflies collect nectar from a lot of different flowers.

                        Since my argument was that this stuff is hard to keep track of or explain, I think I have made my point.

                        Cracker(krăk´ẽr ) Someone, usually but not exclusively white, whose world view is primarily formed by consensual validation as opposed to observed fact, hence “cracker” for someone brittle, insubstantial and lacking in nutritive value.

                        by outis2 on Thu Aug 07, 2014 at 09:40:38 PM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  Sorry, I meant "below" (0+ / 0-)

                          Cracker(krăk´ẽr ) Someone, usually but not exclusively white, whose world view is primarily formed by consensual validation as opposed to observed fact, hence “cracker” for someone brittle, insubstantial and lacking in nutritive value.

                          by outis2 on Thu Aug 07, 2014 at 09:45:36 PM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                        •  your point is baloney (0+ / 0-)

                          In the end, reality always wins.

                          by Lenny Flank on Thu Aug 07, 2014 at 10:08:17 PM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                          •  Lenny, are you the Lenny Flank the author? (1+ / 2-)
                            Recommended by:
                            Shahryar
                            Hidden by:
                            Paul Rogers, willrob

                            And, if anyone here knows Lenny Flank Jr. the author, do they think this guy is really he?

                            Cracker(krăk´ẽr ) Someone, usually but not exclusively white, whose world view is primarily formed by consensual validation as opposed to observed fact, hence “cracker” for someone brittle, insubstantial and lacking in nutritive value.

                            by outis2 on Fri Aug 08, 2014 at 11:41:12 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  HRd. a clear violation of the blog rules. (0+ / 0-)

                            I am reporting this to admin. It is absolutely positively against the list rules to "out" anyone's outside identity here. Keep the discussion here, here.  Don't drag outside real-world stuff into it.

                            You deserve to be bojo'd for this.

                            In the end, reality always wins.

                            by Lenny Flank on Fri Aug 08, 2014 at 12:04:27 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  You've taken the name Lenny Flank (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            Shahryar

                            How am I "outing" you? I am curious about your educational level outside of you pretty ignorant rants, but I don't see how asking you if your name is your name is outing you. Seems like you did that yourself.

                            Cracker(krăk´ẽr ) Someone, usually but not exclusively white, whose world view is primarily formed by consensual validation as opposed to observed fact, hence “cracker” for someone brittle, insubstantial and lacking in nutritive value.

                            by outis2 on Fri Aug 08, 2014 at 01:06:57 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Not going to get in a rating war, but... (3+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            trumpeter, Shahryar, outis2

                            I'm not sure this qualifies as "outing". You post under the name you chose to post under, and you link to your website in your profile. It's not like s/he's revealing anything that isn't readily available on site. Most "outings" involve revealing information that would be known only through RL contact or lots of digging into clues and google searches.

                            “Texas is a so-called red state, but you’ve got 10 million Democrats here in Texas. And …, there are a whole lot of people here in Texas who need us, and who need us to fight for them.” President Obama

                            by Catte Nappe on Fri Aug 08, 2014 at 02:24:43 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  I'm happy to let Elfling decide (0+ / 0-)

                            It smells to me like dragging outside personal stuff in here where it doesn't belong.

                            And I'm a little touchy since one of the other GMO CT tribe members has already taken this personal by dishonestly quoting me out of context in another diary and trying to drag an uninvolved person into it.

                            In the end, reality always wins.

                            by Lenny Flank on Fri Aug 08, 2014 at 03:03:16 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Have you submitted for "adjudication"? (0+ / 0-)

                            If so, might you share the outcome so I, too, can be more informed about the standard?

                            “Texas is a so-called red state, but you’ve got 10 million Democrats here in Texas. And …, there are a whole lot of people here in Texas who need us, and who need us to fight for them.” President Obama

                            by Catte Nappe on Fri Aug 08, 2014 at 03:33:20 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  yes, I have. and yes, I will. assuming I get told (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            Catte Nappe

                            myself what eventually happens. (Elfling tends to work silently, at least she has not really given me any direct responses on previous submissions of shilling accusations--she just goes ahead and does what she does.)

                            In the end, reality always wins.

                            by Lenny Flank on Fri Aug 08, 2014 at 03:39:28 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  can someone else HR this to hide it? (0+ / 0-)

                            Since I have never published a single word on the GMO issue, it is totally absoluely utterly irrelevant to the discussion, and the ONLY purpose in dragging it into this discussion can be to take this personal. He deserves to be bojo'd for it.

                            It is almost--but not quite--as shitty as Indycam dishonestly quote-mining me out of context in another diary that had nothing to do with the subject under discussion.

                            In the end, reality always wins.

                            by Lenny Flank on Fri Aug 08, 2014 at 12:11:03 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  our conversation is ended (0+ / 0-)

                            Goodbye.

                            In the end, reality always wins.

                            by Lenny Flank on Fri Aug 08, 2014 at 12:13:25 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  uprated to counter insane HRs (0+ / 0-)

                            if I asked kos if he was involved with SB Nation (which he is) it would be exactly the same as this.

                            Dear NSA: I am only joking.

                            by Shahryar on Fri Aug 08, 2014 at 02:49:20 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  But you, yourself, recommend a post on this topic (0+ / 0-)

                            on your profile page, where you also "out" yourself. I am new around here, so it is taking a while to learn to navigate or I wouldn't have had to ask if you are who you say you are, but you are pretty self contradictory.

                            Cracker(krăk´ẽr ) Someone, usually but not exclusively white, whose world view is primarily formed by consensual validation as opposed to observed fact, hence “cracker” for someone brittle, insubstantial and lacking in nutritive value.

                            by outis2 on Fri Aug 08, 2014 at 01:40:26 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                    •  Seralini's study has since been vindicated and (3+ / 1-)
                      Recommended by:
                      indycam, SilentBrook, herc67
                      Hidden by:
                      kalmoth

                      Politics is the entertainment branch of industry. -Frank Zappa

                      by FactsPrevail on Wed Aug 06, 2014 at 10:59:01 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  BWAH AH AH AHA HA AH !!!!!!!! (1+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        kalmoth

                        Please feel free to tell us how the GMO was able to cause tumors in Seralini's rats that WERE NOT FED ANY.

                        Be as detailed as possible.

                        In the end, reality always wins.

                        by Lenny Flank on Wed Aug 06, 2014 at 11:24:34 PM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  I guess you didn't bother to read what was (0+ / 0-)

                          linked to
                          or you are just playing another one of your misleading little word games .

                          "please love deeply...openly and genuinely." A. M. H.

                          by indycam on Thu Aug 07, 2014 at 09:13:20 AM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                        •  The link I provided above (1+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          outis2

                          gives you the detail you're looking for. As do these:

                          http://www.farminguk.com/...

                          http://www.geneticliteracyproject.org/...

                          And this one explains the reasons for the initial attacks on Seralini to begin with. Very eye-opening:

                          http://gmspud.com/...

                          Politics is the entertainment branch of industry. -Frank Zappa

                          by FactsPrevail on Thu Aug 07, 2014 at 08:20:18 PM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                          •  Thank you, FactsPrevail (0+ / 0-)

                            The great thing about Lenny is that he makes you go look for stuff to back up your points, and then other people can see it. He's like the grain of sand that starts the oyster making a pearl. Not really, but thank you for the references.

                            Cracker(krăk´ẽr ) Someone, usually but not exclusively white, whose world view is primarily formed by consensual validation as opposed to observed fact, hence “cracker” for someone brittle, insubstantial and lacking in nutritive value.

                            by outis2 on Thu Aug 07, 2014 at 10:02:00 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Yet he never seems to provide any supporting (0+ / 0-)

                            evidence for his ridiculous claims.

                            I have no problem providing citations; I've got a treasure trove of them at the ready. So much so that I've been dubbed the "Queen of Links" on other sites. ;)

                            Politics is the entertainment branch of industry. -Frank Zappa

                            by FactsPrevail on Fri Aug 08, 2014 at 07:23:32 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                        •  Lots of old rats get tumors (0+ / 0-)

                          The problem was that the GMO rats got more and they followed a different pattern. Lenny, I told you, you have to get the difference between "some" and "more".

                          Cracker(krăk´ẽr ) Someone, usually but not exclusively white, whose world view is primarily formed by consensual validation as opposed to observed fact, hence “cracker” for someone brittle, insubstantial and lacking in nutritive value.

                          by outis2 on Thu Aug 07, 2014 at 09:43:11 PM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                          •  then . . . . . . (0+ / 0-)

                            why should we think any of the rats who ate the GMO got their tumors from the GMO . . . . . . . Why did they NOT get their tumors the very same identical way that the rats did who did NOT eat any GMO.

                            Or is it magic.

                            In the end, reality always wins.

                            by Lenny Flank on Thu Aug 07, 2014 at 10:09:43 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Let me explain correlation (0+ / 0-)

                            One of the first steps in science is to see that if you introduce more of something into a system, does the system get more of the thing you are trying to investigate. In this study, more rats got tumors with GMO and Roundup than did without, and the tumors went along with other things that didn't happen as often in the other groups. Plus there was some "dosage" response, which is just when giving more of something you get more of something else than when you just give some.

                            The non-GMO rats got tumors. The GMO rats got more and more more. This doesn't mean that the GMO's caused the tumors. It could be a coincidence, or the cause could be something that slipped into the experiment with the GMO. The only way to know is to conduct more science. It's the perfect scam, I guess.

                            Lenny, I know you can't hear me, but you are fun to talk to anyway. I hope that some day you put as much thought and energy in understanding people as you now put in refusing to.

                            Cracker(krăk´ẽr ) Someone, usually but not exclusively white, whose world view is primarily formed by consensual validation as opposed to observed fact, hence “cracker” for someone brittle, insubstantial and lacking in nutritive value.

                            by outis2 on Thu Aug 07, 2014 at 10:23:28 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  thank you (0+ / 0-)
                            The non-GMO rats got tumors. The GMO rats got more and more more.
                            No they didn't.  The difference was no higher than statistical chance, no different than tossing ten coins and getting seven heads instead of five.
                            This doesn't mean that the GMO's caused the tumors.
                            That's right. It means that both sets of rats got tumors for the very same reason---because they all had been specifically BRED to get tumors.

                            See how easy that was?

                            Now perhaps you'd explain why Seralini's work has never been duplicated by anyone else . . . . . . (Wait, wait, let me guess-----Monsanto shoots anyone who tries, right?)

                            In the end, reality always wins.

                            by Lenny Flank on Thu Aug 07, 2014 at 10:58:48 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  You don't stop doing science because your stats (0+ / 0-)

                            weren't high enough for proof. That is when you need to do more science. The words "statistically insignificant" are often misunderstood. They may just mean that the data set was too small, as in this case, or that the experiment could be improved on. It sure doesn't mean "no correlation found." The numbers looked bad to me.

                            One of my colleagues at Cornell wanted to do a study of the ancient practice of increasing root formation in grape cuttings by planting them with sprouting barley. The belief is that the hormones produced by the barley induce root formation. My colleague wanted to do the experiment with grapes, but her advisor was afraid that she wouldn't get enough rooted cuttings in the end to be statistically relevant, so he talked her into using locust shoots, a plant that roots easily. In the end, all the cuttings rooted so well that there was no statistical relevance to the barley seeds, although that group did root slightly better, and she had to conclude the barley seeds didn't do anything. However, the results of the experiment pointed more towards the locusts being the wrong plant, and it would be worthwhile to repeat the experiment with grapes. This story illustrates that advisors can be a major liability.

                            Cracker(krăk´ẽr ) Someone, usually but not exclusively white, whose world view is primarily formed by consensual validation as opposed to observed fact, hence “cracker” for someone brittle, insubstantial and lacking in nutritive value.

                            by outis2 on Fri Aug 08, 2014 at 11:28:32 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  the rats were BRED TO GET CANCER (0+ / 0-)

                            so why in the heck would anyone assert that ANY of them got cancer from the GMOs they were fed . . . . . especially when the rats that didn't eat a single drop got cancer too . . . .

                            Seralini's study was bullshit.  

                            In the end, reality always wins.

                            by Lenny Flank on Fri Aug 08, 2014 at 11:41:33 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  I didn't read the paper (0+ / 0-)

                            but if truly does say there is a 'statistically insignificant' difference in the rates between the two populations, then that means any 'correlation' found is no better than random chance. I.e., you have failed to statistically demonstrate the connection.

                            Was this because the sample was too small? Who knows. Will they get a statistically significant result of they increase the sample size? Again, who knows. Until they do, the study does not back a connection, no matter how 'bad' the numbers look to you. That's why you use statistics instead of looks to determine whether something is supported or not by an experiment.

                            Peripherally related:

                            http://xkcd.com/...

                          •  There is no absolute standard of "statistically (0+ / 0-)

                            insignificant". That's one of the reasons that scientists argue about whether a result is statistically significant. I am conceding the point that the rats were the wrong rats and the sample size was too small, but, if you read the methods and results of the study, there are way more sick rats in the GMO and GMO plus roundup group, more than I expected because I was in the GMO's are only bad because of how they are being implemented camp at the time. I tried to use the example of my fellow grad student's problem with her thesis to explain why trashing the cancer study as absolutely as Mr. Flank does is not justified. The way he gets overboard is not exactly scientific, but it sure is common.

                            BTW, I lost the address to the original study data, which is out there, and Seralini's defense, and would like to find it again, hint hint.

                            Cracker(krăk´ẽr ) Someone, usually but not exclusively white, whose world view is primarily formed by consensual validation as opposed to observed fact, hence “cracker” for someone brittle, insubstantial and lacking in nutritive value.

                            by outis2 on Fri Aug 08, 2014 at 08:25:05 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Here's a collection of responses (0+ / 0-)

                            from scientists in the field reacting to the republication:

                            http://www.geneticliteracyproject.org/...

                            Note, not all of the reactions were negative, but most were and pointed out the problems already discussed in this thread.

                            That link also contains a link to the republished paper if you wish to re-familiarize yourself with it.

                          •  Here's some of direct links (0+ / 0-)

                            I still haven't seen some of the graphs I remember, but maybe that's my brain. Here are what has been written by Seralini himself. It reminds me that the main conclusions from the study weren't about cancer at all, which I noted in my original comment, but forgot in all the brouhaha.

                            original study republished: http://www.enveurope.com/...

                            http://www.gmoseralini.org/...

                            another reply
                            http://www.sciencedirect.com/...

                            Cracker(krăk´ẽr ) Someone, usually but not exclusively white, whose world view is primarily formed by consensual validation as opposed to observed fact, hence “cracker” for someone brittle, insubstantial and lacking in nutritive value.

                            by outis2 on Sat Aug 09, 2014 at 12:44:40 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                      •  hr for lying n/t (0+ / 1-)
                        Recommended by:
                        Hidden by:
                        indycam
                      •  Recommended to counter bogus hide rate . (0+ / 0-)

                        "please love deeply...openly and genuinely." A. M. H.

                        by indycam on Thu Aug 07, 2014 at 09:04:36 AM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                    •  Try looking at the Seralina yourself (0+ / 0-)

                      and his defense is also available, although the search engines are all clogged up with reports of the republish. It is a small, controlled study with some flaws, but the objections are things like he tried to control too many variables and they don't like his mice. It's a study that begs for more studies after you look at the results, unless you don't want the results.

                      The pollen study I was referring to was in Mexico, and it wasn't on Monarch butterflies. There is an observed correlation between falling milkweed populations and the recent rapid monarch population fails. The blame for the milkweed population fall is placed by Lincoln Brower on Roundup Ready crops. My guess as to the mechanism is not well expressed. The only way roundup would kill more milkweed is that the places that were formerly tilled weren't sprayed (one of the arguments for Roundup Ready is that it promotes no-till), as spraying anything kills stuff around the field while tilling doesn't only kills what is tilled .

                      Cracker(krăk´ẽr ) Someone, usually but not exclusively white, whose world view is primarily formed by consensual validation as opposed to observed fact, hence “cracker” for someone brittle, insubstantial and lacking in nutritive value.

                      by outis2 on Thu Aug 07, 2014 at 09:21:00 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                  •  "the rejection of the paper was a response to (0+ / 0-)

                    pressure".

                    BS ... the paper was crap.

                    the resistance to GMO's is based on two rational principles
                    You have left out the irrational principles that have been well documented here.
                •  Yep. This is the reason (for me) (0+ / 0-)

                  Like anything else, things are safe as long as the companies or people producing it act in ethical ways.  Given their business practices, I do not have confidence that Monsato would ever disclose if they discovered that some of their products did indeed cause harm, and would seek to silence/crush anyone who tried to raise a red flag.

                •  In the United States when you talk about GMO's, (3+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  indycam, SilentBrook, bethann

                  you are talking about Monsanto.   Even if Monsanto is a moral, trustworthy company, NO ONE can with honesty say that GMO's are safe.  They can with authority say that a specific GMO is safe but, especially given Monsanto's reputation, its risky to assume that all GMO' are safe and even riskier to assume, again given Monsanto's earned reputation, that even if a GMO is "safe" to eat, it doesn't mean that its use won't result in catastrophic environmental complications in the future.
                   IMO people have a right to know if there are peanuts in that frozen dinner they just purchased, and just as much right to know if the rice in their shopping cart is a GMO.

              •  If folks want to tackle the mess that is IP (3+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                houyhnhnm, sethtriggs, StrayCat

                I'm all for it.  I don't hate Monsanto any more than I hate Apple, and while corporations certainly lobby to protect their interests our elected officials created this system long ago .  Ultimately, the voters are to blame for not tending to the garden all that well.

                •  What if the voters have lost their power? (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  tobendaro, kharma

                  What if money bought elections? Citizens' United, anyone? What if corporations had more clout than voters in determining who those elected officials are? You appear to be missing something about how American politics has changed in the last few decades. As a long-time US expat, it's much easier to see it from the outside - the US now is not the country I left 30 years ago. It is both a travesty and a tragedy, in my view.

                  „Wer kämpft, kann verlieren. Wer nicht kämpft, hat schon verloren.“ - Bertolt Brecht

                  by translatorpro on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 02:27:09 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  You mean the power to get off their asses (2+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    sethtriggs, StrayCat

                    get down to the polls and render a decision after actually considering the matter?

                    What do you mean lost their power?  It's one thing to point out how Voter ID laws make it more difficult for my community especially to turn out and do what we have to do, but don't blame Monsanto because if you can't be bothered to fill out an absentee ballot with an informed decision.

                    •  So what are you doing to educate those (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      kharma

                      couch potatoes, the low-information voters, of whom there appear to be a lot more than the other kind? Anything? Or do you just complain and judge all the time without doing anything to change the situation? Just griping about it on a website is not doing anything constructive. People need a reason to care, and they are not getting it. Blame the awful US media, blame the oligarchs, blame the politicians, who are keeping the voters in ignorance, not the ones who are suffering the consequences of a horribly broken political system.

                      „Wer kämpft, kann verlieren. Wer nicht kämpft, hat schon verloren.“ - Bertolt Brecht

                      by translatorpro on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 07:19:56 AM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                •  What if the voters (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  tovan, flowerfarmer

                  are getting wrong information and propaganda? Americans are just now beginning to see that they have been had.  That realization has led to the distrust and unwillingness to believe that gmo's are good for us or that any of the information that corporations are trying to sell us is true.  We see that trusted scientists or experts are paid by corporations to tell us what they want us to hear.  We see that politicians are voting in response to money paid by corporations.  The situation is not simple, black and white nor is it blameless on the powerful.

                  Everyone! Arms akimbo! 68351

                  by tobendaro on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 04:47:21 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                •  Voter in which country? (0+ / 0-)

                  Monsanto is an international corporation whose operations in India (the ones I used to interact with) are massive. Voters in the US have a marginal ability to impact Monsanto, before or after Citizens United. In fact, Citizens United is a result more than a cause.

                  Cracker(krăk´ẽr ) Someone, usually but not exclusively white, whose world view is primarily formed by consensual validation as opposed to observed fact, hence “cracker” for someone brittle, insubstantial and lacking in nutritive value.

                  by outis2 on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 12:33:38 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

              •  ^THIS (10+ / 0-)

                Thank you. My opposition to GMO (which is shared by most GMO opponents I know) has little, if anything, to do with safety. I want the food labeled so I know exactly whose business and agricultural practices I should stop supporting with my wallet.

                (Not that I eat much processed crap anyway).

                You see, there are still faint glimmers of civilization left in this barbaric slaughterhouse that was once known as humanity. Indeed that's what we provide in our own modest, humble, insignificant... oh, fuck it. -- M. Gustave

                by Eagles92 on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 07:17:09 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

            •  Is it in genetics? (0+ / 0-)

              A corporate duopoly indeed.

              by gendjinn on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 06:46:15 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  Ya know what ... (15+ / 0-)

              if ya weren't dropping all those F-bombs and essentially calling people stupid f--ks and comparing people with a bit of skepticism (SkepticalRaptor? Really?) toward GMOs to creationists (what's next, they're baby-killers?), people might take you f--king seriously. Apparently, those f--ked up Ph.D. classes did not give you this:

              class adjective 1. demonstrating impressive stylishness in behavior

              Corporations, which should be the carefully restrained creatures of the law and the servants of the people, are fast becoming the people’s masters. -- President Grover Cleveland, 1888

              by edg on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 07:01:53 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  Tyson is wrong (7+ / 0-)

              and so are you.

              There is a really important reason that these GMOs are banned in Europe and some in china as well as the RBGh ban in Canada.

              There is a history that shows GMO foods may produce a low-incidence digestive irritation, leading to poor digestion and even increased food allergies.

              do you suggest that adequate testing of GMOs has been done to rule out low-yield, low-incidence food allergies for GMOs, or combined GMO products in the average U.S. consumer's diet?

              because if you are then you have absolutely no idea what you are talking about.

              In 1941, 43% of all produce consumed within the United States was grown at home

              by New Minas on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 09:31:12 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  No you are wrong. (8+ / 0-)

                As is this propaganda piece of film you linked to.  What next?  A link to a different form of 'geo-engineering' (this one entirely imaginative in a different light), 'What In The World Are They Spraying?'.  It's all the same scare mongering pap with as much basis in reality as anything you can find on your garden variety CT site.

                Charlie Crist for Florida Primary date: August 26, 2014, Election Date: November 4, 2014

                by aimeehs on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 10:15:14 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  GMOs on an usual or mostly level may be safe en... (4+ / 0-)

                  GMOs on an usual or mostly level may be safe enough for many people to eat. I am old. I've been around for wheat and corn changes; fruit and vegetable changes. some of them are not good. it's wrong that modified wheat gives me GI bleeding, even a tiny bit gives bloating and diarrhea. it's wrong that modified corn is making us a nation of obese. you say, well then stop eating that. corn and wheat products are hidden in nearly every processed food. not my problem, you say. maybe not yet, but when we can get no food but what Monsanto gives seeds for because all others are out of business and they decide who gets seeds and what kinds of seeds and the food it grows ruins you on the inside and outside there will be no turning back.

              •  GMOs are not banned in Europe (18+ / 0-)

                Their IMPORT is banned.  It is perfectly fine and legal to produce YOUR OWN gmos in Europe and sell them there.

                That is because the GMO ban on American products is a TRADE issue, not a SAFETY issue.

                In the end, reality always wins.

                by Lenny Flank on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 10:35:45 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

              •  ps--GMOs have already undergone massive human (10+ / 0-)

                testing--more than any other product in history has.  See, everyone in the US has been eating GMOs since the 1990's, every day, all 300 million of us.  Over 90% of all the corn and soy in the US is GMO, and it is in virtually anything edible that you've ever eaten. That is over 6 billion person-years of testing.

                And none of it has had any demonstrated large-scale effect on anyone, anywhere, at any time.

                In the end, reality always wins.

                by Lenny Flank on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 10:38:44 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  can you tell me their effect in seven generations? (3+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  tovan, Pescadero Bill, flowerfarmer

                  Then they fail the most important first test. No, this isn't "science" but the notion that something that has been around for less than 100 years has been deemed completely safe totally disregards the possibility of long term issues that are yet to manifest.

                  He who throws mud only loses ground -- Fat Albert

                  by c0wfunk on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 02:46:58 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  So what's your point? (0+ / 0-)

                    Strengthen the Senate! ROCK THE HOUSE!

                    by mwm341 on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 03:21:40 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                  •  Possibly it's your definition of "completely safe" (5+ / 0-)

                    that needs to be reconsidered. After all, the prime precursor to death has always been being alive in the first place.

                    There's been an eventual downside - or several - to almost every advance that we have made since some idiot decided to bring fire into a cave. I do believe that plumbing - the lead pipe variety - was considered safe for centuries.

                    Every solution that actually counts as a solution brings with it new, inherent, unknown problems. All things considered, GMOs seem to be relatively positive, compared with some of the other changes we've made in the past 50 years.

                    mouseover the bar (I'm practicing for DK5)

                    by serendipityisabitch on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 05:37:22 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  you make my point (3+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      Alice215, JVolvo, flowerfarmer

                      Lead pipes and asbestos and many other amazing advances are exactly what I'm talking about. Why rush in and make it the fabric of our ezistance before giving time to see the long term affects? For a profit? For a copyright on a seed? Not a good enough reason.

                      He who throws mud only loses ground -- Fat Albert

                      by c0wfunk on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 06:58:39 AM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  There is no way to see long term effects (4+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        R30A, Joffan, nicteis, kfunk937

                        except after long term use, which your scenario will make sure never happens. As to lead in plumbing, versus effective sanitation and water availability - tell it to the Romans.

                        mouseover the bar (I'm practicing for DK5)

                        by serendipityisabitch on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 07:21:57 AM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  long term study before widespread adoption (0+ / 0-)

                          Is all I advocate. Right now profits are first, consequences considered second. I advocate for the opposite. Slow down a little.

                          He who throws mud only loses ground -- Fat Albert

                          by c0wfunk on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 09:00:03 AM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                          •  Such a tiny ask (5+ / 0-)

                            You were going on about seventh generation effects earlier. So - your modest proposal is to study every technology for seven generations before alllowing its use.

                            We should be allowed to vaccinate our kids against polio, then, sometime in the 23rd century? And about sixty years later, we can let more than a few thousand study subjects log on to the Internet.

                            Suppose you suggest any plausible mechanism by which the alteration of a gene by laboratory manipulation could cause harm that would not be caused by the same gene being altered in the wild by mutation, or natural selection, or gene-jumping microbes - all things that have been going on forever, and setting your table forever. Any plausible mechanism at all.

                            If you can't do that, perhaps you can suggest how your fear of the phantom ingredient introduced alongside the altered DNA differs from a skittish horse shying at shadows.

                            The real USA Patriot Act was written in 1789. It's called the Bill of Rights.

                            by nicteis on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 09:54:19 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  modest indeed (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            nicteis

                            why the vitriol? That's what I don't get with the pro-science science will save everything crowd. Why are you so condescending?

                            When things are really extreme one way, sometimes suggesting something really extreme the other way is a strategy for making people reconsider a little and hopefully we end up in the middle somewhere. That is how dreams and ideals someday become reality. Think big and act every day on it.

                            I am not a scientist, I am a musician and a programmer. In my profession where rapid iteration and change is the norm I frequently see extinction because of rapid adoption and bad choices made. 10 years later, when it all shakes out you end up with a bunch of unmanageable crap. This evolution is much quicker than what happens in real life. I suggest we take a step back and consider all of these things deeply at every step. That is not such a crazy idea in some circles and many societies that lasted much longer than post-industrial-revolution has took this approach.

                            Again, time will tell with industrial, post scientific revolution society in general if it is sustainable. So far, I'd have to say, the early returns are not that great.

                            I do not distrust science inherently. I do distrust large corporate interests with lots of money invested in rapid change. That happens to be the side carrying the torch for GMOs right now. So naturally I am cautious in my approach. As I said, I am in no position to make a professional judgement, so I will be naturally cautious and skeptical. In my choices I tend to err on the side of less human intervention and more natural solutions and usually am happy with that decision.

                            He who throws mud only loses ground -- Fat Albert

                            by c0wfunk on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 10:54:34 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  I argue sharply in hopes of cutting thru the fuzz (4+ / 0-)

                            On this topic, I certainly get condescending, but I don't believe "you are skittish" really counts as vitriolic.

                            I'm not a scientist either, but I have a lifelong passion for learning about science, especially biology. I know what I'm talking about. And it's frustrating to see political allies with their hearts in the right place go tilting at windmills (e.g., GM technology) when there are real giants stomping down the landscape (e.g., unsustainable agricultural practices and predatory agribusiness.)

                            I suppose I could bridle at the implication that I somehow constitute a "large corporate interest  with lots of money involved" in GMOs - but I'm confident you merely mean I'm the dupe of such interests.  No, in this case I'm a dupe of the primary scientific literature, for which I have a minor addiction.

                            And maybe I'd rather get my frustrations out in these forums, so I can argue more gently with my anti-GMO wife. (We're preparing to retire to a New England farm that's lain fallow for a half century, where we dream of being self-sufficient at least in vegetables and chickens, without using a drop of herbicide or insecticide. The variety of pollinator life on those acres is a joy to watch.)

                            The real USA Patriot Act was written in 1789. It's called the Bill of Rights.

                            by nicteis on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 12:05:24 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Sorry probably not you exactly... (0+ / 0-)

                            I got a few suprisingly "sharp" replies that were on the edge of insulting, the kind of thing I don't tend to run into round these parts. Looking through the comments on teh diary as a whole, the pro GMO group is leaning towards that fundamentalist, just don't worry about it you don't know science stupid - mindset that I am referring to.

                            "I suppose I could bridle at the implication that I somehow constitute a "large corporate interest  with lots of money involved" in GMOs - but I'm confident you merely mean I'm the dupe of such interests. "

                            From the outside, again, i haven't and will not study the science, the Vested Interests is what I'm referring to... Not a particular commenter or group of commenters on this website.

                            There are also people in my life who I trust quite a bit (I worked for a nonprofit that works with local farmers) who have taken a strong opposing stance to GMOs. People who I trust have looked at the science themselves, so that also drives much of my skepticism. Fairly, I'll add that there are certainly some crazies and crazy reasons to oppose GMOs, none of which I have cited.

                            One type of situation I fear is a story I heard while working there of a farmer who was in danger of losing their organic status because of a neighbor whose GMO roundup resistant crops were routinely sprayed. This is the type of issue that comes up around this topic..

                            Science aside, if you you want GMO and I don't, but your GMO crops have a way of making my nonGMO crops either poisoned (roundup) or pickup the traits I am trying to avoid, then we have a problem.

                            No science that tells me how safe GMOs are to eat will convince me that it is good to have more roundup and less organic food. That is a topic that seems to be totally ignored by the vocal pro gmo group in this thread.

                            “In every deliberation, we must consider the impact on the seventh generation... even if it requires having skin as thick as the bark of a pine.” ― Great Law of the Iroquois

                            by c0wfunk on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 12:18:57 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  I don't perceive it being ignored (2+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            serendipityisabitch, c0wfunk

                            I haven't seen a pro-GMO contingent here at dKos. Only an anti-anti-GMO contingent. Prominently in the diary itself, and frequently in the comments, it is stipulated that there are bad GMO products.  It's just that it's not their GMO-ness that makes them bad.

                            Elsewhere, I've argued in favor of much stronger labeling than the anti-GMO forces have generally asked for. I want a list of modified genes, just like we have lists of ingredients. Then I can avoid the roundup-ready and Bt stuff, while taking advantage of whatever valuable products emerge.

                            An additional problem with genetically modified corn stems from the fact that corn is wind-pollinated. So to facilitate labeling, you have to have firm rules that segregate GMO cornfields from farmers downwind.

                            The real USA Patriot Act was written in 1789. It's called the Bill of Rights.

                            by nicteis on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 01:30:19 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                  •  and if I do you'll want to see the effect in eight (9+ / 0-)

                    and then ten.

                    No study will EVER satisfy you. Ever.

                    It's like creationists--no amount of data or study will EVER convince them evolution happens.

                    That's because it's ideology, not science.

                    (shrug)

                    In the end, reality always wins.

                    by Lenny Flank on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 06:24:36 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  not true. I'm saying give it time (0+ / 0-)

                      Until time has passed you will not know the long term affects.see the lead pipe comment above. I can be satisfied by scientific studies and my mind can change. Anything not time tested is subject to more time before a final judgement can be rendered. Is that not valid?

                      He who throws mud only loses ground -- Fat Albert

                      by c0wfunk on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 07:00:45 AM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  time? it's been here for 20 years (5+ / 0-)

                        Everyone in the US has been eating it since then, and there has been NO demonstrated large-scale harmful effect from it on anyone, anywhere, at any time.

                        How much more time do you think it will require?

                        In the end, reality always wins.

                        by Lenny Flank on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 07:02:49 AM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  Well, by the math, he only wants it to take until (3+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          kingfishstew, Paul Rogers, kfunk937

                          after he's dead and doesn't have to worry about it.

                          mouseover the bar (I'm practicing for DK5)

                          by serendipityisabitch on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 07:35:27 AM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                        •  That's science? That's not science. (1+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          flowerfarmer

                          Why is it an average American male has a near 50% chance of developing cancer in his lifetime?

                          A woman, about 44% chance?

                          Cancer rates have been climbing in the US, can you tell me why?

                          I'm not saying it's GMO to be sure, but what I'm trying to suggest is that there's no actual scientific proof that's it's not a contributing factor for instance.

                          Correlation ≠ causation works both ways.

                          Personally, I'm tired of living in fear of cancer. But, how do I avoid it?


                          "We must make our choice. We may have democracy, or we may have wealth concentrated in the hands of a few, but we can't have both." - Louis Brandeis

                          by Pescadero Bill on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 08:09:20 AM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                        •  Do you really, honestly think (1+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          flowerfarmer

                          the increase of roundup due to increased use of herbicide tolerant GMO seeds has no demonstrated large scale effect from it? Roundup has been demonstrated to be harmful in numerous studies. This is part of my point here.. You can't just say "you can eat it so it is fine"

                          How are these choices and changes in dna affecting the natural environment? How are you so sure that altering how organisms fit together in the ecosystem will never have any large scale harmful effect from it on anyone, ever? No organism will suffer any harm from it. That is the bar I set. That is the bar I try and hold up my choices to.

                          He who throws mud only loses ground -- Fat Albert

                          by c0wfunk on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 11:03:21 AM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                          •  Roundup (3+ / 0-)

                            is a mixture of glyphosate and surfactants that help it get through the waxy coating of leaves. In older formulations, it was the surfactant that had the most toxicity to organisms other than plants.

                            Glyphosate, the active ingredient in Roundup, inhibits the shikimate pathway, a metabolic pathway animals don't have. It also degrades in a matter of days in most cases, which is why it is frequently used in habitat restorations. You can knock out invasive weeds and plant native species within a week.

                            There is evidence that glyphosate is an endocrine disrupter at high doses, but guess what, so is ethanol and resveratrol (both found in red wine).

                            Glyphosate is also off-patent, so it's now sold in formulations by a lot of other companies.

                            If you want to know more, spend a little time on Google.

                            It's all about light.

                            by PhotoElect on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 01:30:20 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  are we adding (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            SilentBrook

                            ethanol and resveratrol to our water tables in large doses? Should we be?

                            Saying a substance is like another one doesn't necessarily mean it's a great idea to hugely increase the environmental quantities of it, does it?

                            Hint: Increasing the quantities of any substance in a system changes how that system works. I thought I was talking to scientists here! Do we not get how complicated systems work?

                            “In every deliberation, we must consider the impact on the seventh generation... even if it requires having skin as thick as the bark of a pine.” ― Great Law of the Iroquois

                            by c0wfunk on Wed Aug 06, 2014 at 01:09:01 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  what I think doesn't matter diddley (2+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            T100R, kfunk937

                            The reality is that no scientific study has demonstrated any link between Roundup and any largescale human health effect.  Period.

                            Until you offer one that does, there's nothing to discuss.

                            In the end, reality always wins.

                            by Lenny Flank on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 01:43:56 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  answer this question (0+ / 0-)

                            How are these choices and changes in dna affecting the natural environment, our ecosystem as a whole, and other large scale ecological concerns?

                            I am not always and entirely worried about "largescale human health effects" there are more concerns than that in this world.

                            “In every deliberation, we must consider the impact on the seventh generation... even if it requires having skin as thick as the bark of a pine.” ― Great Law of the Iroquois

                            by c0wfunk on Wed Aug 06, 2014 at 01:04:50 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  they're not (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            aimeehs

                            GMO has been in the US for over 20 years.  It has had no demonstrated effect anywhere on anything.

                            Indeed, the genes used in GMO have already been here for millions of years--Monsanto did not make ANY of them. They have had no noticeable environmental effect during that time.

                            In the end, reality always wins.

                            by Lenny Flank on Wed Aug 06, 2014 at 02:08:21 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Would you spread it on YOUR kids toast??? n/t (0+ / 0-)
                        •  your thinking is fuzzy (1+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          flowerfarmer

                          and your claims are unfounded, there is significant indication that low-grade digestive irritation is leading to increases in food allergies which lead to increases in inflammation and finally to wide-scale increases in autoimmune diseases among specific, genetically linked groups.

                          and there has been NO demonstrated large-scale harmful effect from it on anyone, anywhere, at any time.
                          A study published in the April 1, 2007 edition of Nature Immunology concluded that allergic and inflammatory diseases may actually trigger autoimmune diseases by relaxing the controls that normally eliminate newly produced, self-reactive B cells.

                          source

                          In 1941, 43% of all produce consumed within the United States was grown at home

                          by New Minas on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 01:31:46 PM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                          •  baloney (2+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            T100R, kfunk937

                            You can wave your arms all you want. There is no scientific study linking GMOs to any largescale health problem.  None.  Not a one.

                            Not even your own offered link makes that claim.

                            Sorry about that.  (shrug)

                            In the end, reality always wins.

                            by Lenny Flank on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 01:42:31 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  nor has (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            c0wfunk

                            the issue that I have proposed been ruled out.  This because of the extensive lobby efforts made by the agribusiness industry to ensure that GMO products receive no such scrutiny,  

                            you can claim that there is no proof that GMOs cause the problems that we see, but the metadata that indicates a significant environmental shift in the 1990s leading to wide scale increases in autoimmune deficiencies.  

                            In this case, when introducing a new technology that radically changes the genetic structure of foods, to not perform the studies necessary to rule out these potentially harmful effects is worse than criminal.  

                            and you are a fool for neglecting to consider this potential in your careless and  mindless assertions.

                            In 1941, 43% of all produce consumed within the United States was grown at home

                            by New Minas on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 08:46:04 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  you act as though (1+ / 1-)
                            Recommended by:
                            c0wfunk
                            Hidden by:
                            Skaje

                            people who claim that there are potential risks to GMOs that have not been disallowed by rigorous scientific study are somehow akin to climate change deniers.  

                            There is no scientific study linking GMOs to any largescale health problem.  None.  Not a one.
                            This is a patently false accusation and shows how flawed your ability to think clearly and logically has become.

                            you argue that there has been no study PROVING that GMOS are harmful.

                            This is not the same as saying that others are DENYING scientific study that shows they are safe, no such study exists.

                            instead, you are actually arguing along the lines of reasoning utilized by the tobacco industry in denying the threat of second hand smoke to children.

                            "There is no study that proves second hand smoke is dangerous".

                            --the tobacco industry Circa 1990

                            In 1941, 43% of all produce consumed within the United States was grown at home

                            by New Minas on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 09:18:23 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  name them (2+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            kfunk937, aimeehs

                            Show us these studies.  Put up or shut up.

                            And TRY not to go with the ones that have already been withdrawn because they were shown to be bullshit.

                            In the end, reality always wins.

                            by Lenny Flank on Wed Aug 06, 2014 at 04:18:10 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  interesting choice of authorities (2+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            serendipityisabitch, kfunk937
                            A Diversified Integrative Medical Center

                            Combining Traditional & Alternative Medicine to Fastrack Your Road to Health [...]

                            Martha M. Grout
                            MD, MD(H), Founder

                            Martha Grout, MD, MD(H) leads a holistic medical practice in Scottsdale, Arizona. Dr. Grout has 25 years in emergency medicine, and for the last decade, she has been a homeopathic physician....

                            (Blinks.)

                            "Democracy is a political system for people who are not sure they are right." —E. E. Schattschneider

                            by HudsonValleyMark on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 01:49:03 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  I think this is right about where we hear (2+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            T100R, kfunk937

                            all about the big global scientific corporate conspiracy by Big Ag, Big Pharma and Big Medicine to "suppress the truth".

                            (snicker)

                            In the end, reality always wins.

                            by Lenny Flank on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 02:01:54 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                  •  Seven generations (6+ / 0-)

                    The effect in seven generations is likely that will there be a lot more people will be alive, especially in what is now developing countries, because of more availability and more nutritious food and less land will have been turned into monoculture because of higher yields.

                    These effects would dwarf any supposed undetectable side effects.

                    •  You really think (0+ / 0-)

                      more people alive will result in a more healthy world overall? All in a GMO created starvation free world? Do you really think that is Monsanto's vision? Johnny fucking GMO seed? All of this technology will just be used to stock some wondeful utopian granary that will solve world hunger?

                      Good luck with that.

                      He who throws mud only loses ground -- Fat Albert

                      by c0wfunk on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 11:25:04 AM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  Capitalism (3+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        PhotoElect, houyhnhnm, kfunk937

                        If you are worried about Monsanto, you should be fighting capitalism, not GMOs.

                      •  WE might be alive but--- (0+ / 0-)

                        We might be ALIVE but at what COST and what difference in our health???

                        I have several auto immune diseases that MIGHT be linked to these giant food experiments (and of course the OTHER chemicals we are surrounded by).  My sister has the same problem--and we are "half sisters"  and did NOT grow up anywhere near each other.  Our other sister has a DIFFERENT auto immune disease.  

                        Many of the people I grew up with in NJ died at a young age of weird unexpected diseases.  

                        Most of the people I know who still live there have auto immune and other diseases NOT linked generally to "aging"  etc.  

                        Common link--we ALL eat.

                        We ALL breath.

                        We ALL drink water.  

                        Yet---100 years ago people ate;  breathed and drank water.  They did NOT contract these SAME diseases at anywhere NEAR the common rate seen today.

                        There almost HAS to be something that has CHANGED.  

                        And No I am not ruling out the "Couch Potato Effect"  but way too many of these people are young and active.  

                        •  Well, more people died off a lot younger, for one. (0+ / 0-)

                          In childbirth, in infancy, in childhood, and as young adults. There might have been as much of the same diseases around a hundred years ago, but we simply don't know. Had you lived then, you might have been one more child in a small grave because both diagnosis and treatment were lacking. We don't know.

                          mouseover the bar (I'm practicing for DK5)

                          by serendipityisabitch on Wed Aug 06, 2014 at 08:20:23 PM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                •  That explains my bowel irritation since 1993. (nt) (0+ / 0-)

                  "Woe unto ye beetles of South America." -- Charles Darwin, about to sail on The Beagle, 1831

                  by Katakana on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 04:51:55 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                •  except for the millions who have developed alle... (0+ / 0-)

                  except for the millions who have developed allergies to it, Lenny. for we who are sick Days each week because of volunteer seeding in fields( oh what's a little wheat in the oat fields going to hurt? ) tell you what--it produces an intestinal dump, and if it's while you're walking the dog, it's public.

                •  And--- (0+ / 0-)

                  there have been HUGE changes in HUMAN health in that SAME time period--see::: Obesity and diabetes  and digestive problems and MS and certain other diseases that are unprecedented in human history.

                  And even the incidence of Type 1 Diabetes--the "genetic"  kind if you will--is SOARING.

                  Where DID this come from??

                  Could it be--somehow--LINKED to this giant experiment on humans carried out by Monsanto et al?

                  Show of hands?

                  WE may THINK we are eating real food--we may NOT be.  And the consequences might not be KNOWN for YEARS.  

                •  Wowee, that sure is a whole lot of absolutes. (0+ / 0-)

                  And a sure-fire way to destroy your credibility.

                  Politics is the entertainment branch of industry. -Frank Zappa

                  by FactsPrevail on Wed Aug 06, 2014 at 11:17:38 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  no, the best way to destroy your credibility is to (0+ / 0-)

                    wave your arms that GMOs are killing people when there is not a single shred of data anywhere tying GMOs to anything, in anyone, anywhere, at any time.

                    If you disagree, please by all means show us that data.

                    In the end, reality always wins.

                    by Lenny Flank on Wed Aug 06, 2014 at 11:28:11 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

              •  What? ALL of them do that? (0+ / 0-)

                Don't be silly!

                Strengthen the Senate! ROCK THE HOUSE!

                by mwm341 on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 03:19:30 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

              •  Actually, real science is now suggesting that the (4+ / 0-)

                rise in food allergy has to do with overprescription and  use of antibiotics. Nothing to do with GMOs.

                Watch Bill Maher's first interview on his June 27th show with Dr. Martin Blaser about his new book, Missing Microbes:
                How the Overuse of Antibiotics Is Fueling Our Modern Plagues. Or read the books.

              •  Digestive irritation: source? (4+ / 0-)

                Please link to the primary scientific articles written in prominent journals that outline this effect you mention.

                And no, "the journals are in cahoots with Monsanto" doesn't count as a counter-argument.

                "Believe nothing, no matter where you read it, or who said it... unless it agrees with your own reason and your own common sense." -The Buddha

                by Brian A on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 04:41:53 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

              •  Um--- (0+ / 0-)

                These are SUITS not FARMERS

                Lets go ask THEM shall we????

            •  What would that Ph.D. be in? (0+ / 0-)


              "We must make our choice. We may have democracy, or we may have wealth concentrated in the hands of a few, but we can't have both." - Louis Brandeis

              by Pescadero Bill on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 07:21:41 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  Well, i love science whatever it supports or does (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Joieau, flowerfarmer

              not, but I get to choose what I put into my body based on my tastes, my concepts of what is environmentally sound practice, and what I conclude is warranted.  Thus, I want labeling, and I want it to be in English.  This issue is no different than that of real disclosure by Verizon as to who they give my location information to, labeling of the ingredients in packaged food, and notice of the consequences of signing up for a website.

              Patriotism may be the last refuge of scoundrels, but religion is assuredly the first.

              by StrayCat on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 09:01:42 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  HEy theres a--- (0+ / 0-)

              HEy there is a fascinating blog with that title--

              I Fucking Love Science

              Check it out!

          •  Exactly, KoNko, (7+ / 0-)

            The issues are biodiversity, resilience, privatization of commonwealth resources, monopoly

            Scientific consensus might say the planet's population exceeds resources, is not sustainable. Does that mean we should practice genocide?

          •  I would like to hear your estimate (4+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            houyhnhnm, Lucy2009, ER Doc, flowerfarmer

            Of the percentage of scientists with PhDs in relevant fields that think that GMOs are safe and how high that percentage should be to consider it settled science.

            •  Those PhD's probably (8+ / 0-)

              work for Monsanto. ADM, Syngenta, Pfizer, BASF, Bayer, Dupont, USAID, DoD and Dow Chemicals.

              First they get you sick from high fructose corn and soybeans genetically modified with glyphosate and Agent Orange resistant proteins, then you are forced to buy expensive pharmaceuticals to survive, like cows that are forced fed GMO corn when they are in reality grass feeders.

              I have lost my trust in America and it's corporations when they start destroying and controlling seed banks:

              http://usa.mediamonitors.net/...

              •  So who do you trust enough (6+ / 0-)

                That they would be capable of convincing you that are wrong on this issue (if you turn out to be wrong)?

              •  so science is just a corporate conspiiiiiracy !!!! (13+ / 0-)

                (sigh)

                PS, this . . .

                Agent Orange resistant proteins
                . . . is just dishonest bullshit. The proposed gene is resistant to 2,4-D. 2,4-D is NOT "Agent Orange", and it was NOT the toxic part of Agent Orange. The toxic part of Agent Orange was dioxin, which was introduced during the manufacture of the 2,4,5-T ingredient as an unwanted impurity. 2,4-D is NOT dioxin and does not contain any dioxin.

                I am presuming that you simply don't know enough about the matter to know that your statement is dishonest, and you just quoted it from some crapsite or another without actually understanding it.  But any first-year chemistry student would know that this statement is either incredibly jaw-droppingly stupid, or a deliberate intentional lie.

                In the end, reality always wins.

                by Lenny Flank on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 08:40:38 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

              •  Not to mention corporate censoring (0+ / 0-)

                Unfavorable results of GMO research are routinely BLOCKED and you have to get permission of these companies to publish your work involving their "products".

                This is not unfettered academic research.

                So, read this article, and then tell me with a straight face that GMO research is settled science when the scientists and research universities are now owned lock stock and barrel by the very companies that wish us to believe these products are in fact safe and nutritious.  Maybe they are. But I don't for a moment believe the science is settled.

                https://www.jacobinmag.com/...

                --United Citizens defeated Citizens United...This time. --

                by chipoliwog on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 11:27:07 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

              •  Cows--- (0+ / 0-)

                Cows fed corn over other hay or grass based diets spend their live in a constant state of bowel illness and over load.  

                Come see ANY dairy farm where the cows are fed a NON choice corn based diet---it is disgusting

                I am sitting here right now with the stench of cows fed this diet as the local dairy farmer spread the manure on the hay fields across from my house today.

                Cows--think beef cows--that are pastured on grass do not HAVE this issue.  But when they "Finish" them on corn and wheat they DEVELOP this problem.  

                Happy to take you on a tour of this sort of thing.

            •  I have a PhD in molecular biology (9+ / 0-)

              and work at a non-profit university on cancer research.  I have never met a fellow researcher in my field or in any related field that is concerned about the health effects of GMOs.

              Anecdotal, to be sure, but thats what you were asking for, wasn't it?

              "Believe nothing, no matter where you read it, or who said it... unless it agrees with your own reason and your own common sense." -The Buddha

              by Brian A on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 04:43:31 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  I don't know. (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              flowerfarmer

              But the cafeteria at Monsanto corporate HQ in St. Louis didn't serve GMO foods (as of last I heard).

              There are three kinds of men. The one that learns by reading. The few who learn by observation. The rest of them have to pee on the electric fence for themselves. - Will Rogers

              by Joieau on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 01:19:41 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

          •  actually (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            sethtriggs, bleeding blue

            he agrees with you:

            Non-perennial Seed Strains: It’s surely legal to sell someone seeds that cannot reproduce themselves, requiring that the farmer buy seed stocks every year from the supplier. But when sold to developing country — one struggling to become self-sufficient — the practice is surely immoral. Corporations, even when they work within the law, should not be held immune from moral judgement on these matters.
            Monopolies are generally bad things in a free market. To the extent that the production of GMOs are a monopoly, the government should do all it can to spread the baseline of this industry. (My favorite monopoly joke ever, told by Stephen Wright: “I think it’s wrong that the game Monopoly is sold by only one company”)
            Safety: Of course new foods should be tested for health risks
          •  But everyone wants to talk about food safety (0+ / 0-)

            Drives me nuts.

        •  Experts? (11+ / 0-)

          In the food industry?  In the Drug Industry?  

          Experts?  Who represent the people.  

          Or experts who are funded by corporations that are putting patents on seeds?  Who are suing farmers who try to grow the way our ancestors did.

          Tyson is a cosmologist not a social scientist, or a life scientist dealing with social producation of food.

        •  Crop scientists Sheilds interested on the (7+ / 0-)

          impact on the environment. The EPA and the FDA both accept research paid for by Pioneer, Syngenta & Monsanto without inquiring independent research.

          The restrictions on indie research should be eased.

          .................expect us......................... FDR 9-23-33, "If we cannot do this one way, we will do it another way. But do it we will.

          by Roger Fox on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 06:36:11 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  I wish Tyson would look beyond the consuming of... (6+ / 0-)

          I wish Tyson would look beyond the consuming of food to the ecosystem question. There appears to be scientific research indicating possibly severe negative impacts on beneficial insects.

          •  In a short space, I think Tyson covered it well (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            houyhnhnm

            He indicated several specific GMO products and industry practices with which he had problems. The anti-GMO faction to whom he and the diarist object persistently make the scientifically senseless claim that consuming GMO food - regardless of what the modification was - is detrimental to one's health. And it's that blanket assertion about GMOs that he was countering.

            Beneficial insects may indeed be running into difficulty with the Bt in genetically modified crops. If so, they have a problem with the Bt, not with the technology by which it got into the field. Golden rice is not killing off pollinators.

            The real USA Patriot Act was written in 1789. It's called the Bill of Rights.

            by nicteis on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 10:05:18 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  Safe or not, there is a difference between (0+ / 0-)

          Crop hybridisation in the field and laboratory genetic modification.  Monsanto and the rest focus on specific genetic locations and expressions, and ignore whatever consequences may follow in other segments of the DNA strand.  They can sell the food all they want. But I want the choice of whether to buy and eat it.  Just a I want the choixe,of,whether to but and drink milk drom cows treated with antibiotics, pigs fed with garbage, and vegetables sprayed with organo- phosphates.  Safe or not, it is my choice, not the corporations, the market or the retailers.

          Patriotism may be the last refuge of scoundrels, but religion is assuredly the first.

          by StrayCat on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 08:52:39 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  Then I guess all those meterologists denying... (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        T100R, mwm341, sethtriggs

        ...climate change are right.

        Who knew?

      •  There's a hierarchy of expertise out there (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        ban nock, Fonsia

        Zoologists and whoever is considered to be an "expert" by the anti-GMO movement are not at the top.

      •  um, Tyson is not in conflict with experts in the (21+ / 0-)

        field.

        There are NO valid scientific studies showing that GMOs are any more harmful or dangerous than raw eggs are.  None.  Not a one.

        Indeed, the ONLY study on GMOs that has been withdrawn by a science journal because it was shown to be dishonest bullshit, was from the anti-GMOer Seralini.

        In the end, reality always wins.

        by Lenny Flank on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 06:55:54 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Actually, the Seralini paper has been republished (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          jps, laurak, cville townie

          in a respected scientific journal after it was removed by the previous journal's editor.  The paper has now been peer-reviewed three times.

          I have not read the paper, only saw the controversy in some journals that I read.

          The plural of anecdote is NOT data

          by Dr Arcadia on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 07:52:31 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  nope (16+ / 0-)

            Seralini's paper is baloney--the rats he fed the NON-GMNO corn to got tumors too, at around the sasme rate as the GMO-fed rats did. That's because Seralini used a particular strain of rats that were specificially bred to be highly susceptible to tumors for use in cancer research.

            PS--Seralini's "study" was not peer-reviewed at all before being republished in Environmental Sciences Europe

            Then there is the "pig study" paper, which couldn't even make it to a peer-reviewed journal. Because the pigs that had NOT been fed any GMOs got stomach ulcers at about the same rate as the GMO-fed ones did. Probably because of the unsanitary conditions both sets of pigs were housed in.

            There is no valid peer-reviewed paper pointing out any observed large-scale health effect from GMO foods, or proposing any mechanism by which it might happen.  

            In the end, reality always wins.

            by Lenny Flank on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 08:01:38 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Agreed. Seralini used Sprague Dawley Rats (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              serendipityisabitch, T100R, mikidee

              which have a high incidence of spontaneous cancer, not the sort of test animal you'd want to use for such a study.

              What was really unconscionable was he let the tumors grow to grotesque proportions just to get scary photographs. Animal treatment ethics in research require putting an animal down once a tumor gets to about the size of a pea, I believe.

              It's all about light.

              by PhotoElect on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 02:04:04 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

          •  Incorrect. It was not peer reviewed again (14+ / 0-)

            It was only republished because, in fact, the data were not falsified.

            Here's the editor of the journal explaining to Nature why he republished the paper:

            Environmental Sciences Europe (ESEU) decided to re-publish the paper to give the scientific community guaranteed long-term access to the data in the retracted paper, editor-in-chief Henner Hollert told Nature. “We were Springer Publishing’s first open access journal on the environment, and are a platform for discussion on science and regulation at a European and regional level.” ESEU conducted no scientific peer review, he adds, “because this had already been conducted by Food and Chemical Toxicology, and had concluded there had been no fraud nor misrepresentation.” The role of the three reviewers hired by ESEU was to check that there had been no change in the scientific content of the paper, Hollert adds.
            (Emphasis added)

            There basically are three major flaws in the study. Not in the raw data, which were real, but in how the data were interpreted:

            1. They used a population of rats that was already prone to developing tumors. That alone would lead to false positives.
            2. They used far too small sample sizes. That would not give them the statistical power to determine much of anything.
            3. They conducted so many statistical tests that they were bound to wind up with some false positives.

            One truly wonders how the thing got published in the first place.

            When we get research that contradicts the vast majority of previous studies in its field it certainly should be strongly considered. It was, and was found to be seriously flawed. When a study is as flawed as this one it needs to be tossed aside.

            Only those who want support for their own previously held positions could ignore the flaws and so loudly support that one study, alone amongst the thousands of studies that came to the opposite conclusion.

        •  By other accounts it was withdrawn because (7+ / 0-)

          of intense pressure and defamation by GMO-funded advocates.

          In any event it's been republished in Environmental Sciences Europe

          What do you make of the fact that Europe, China, etc have made it a point to ban GMO crops; not only raising them but importing them? Are they a vast crackpot conspiracy driven by an urge to not make a living at Monsanto, or summat?

          “The first was for the initial publication of the study in Food and Chemical Toxicology. It passed with only minor revisions, according to the authors.[3]

          “The second review took months. It involved a non-transparent examination of Prof Séralini’s raw data by a secret panel of unnamed persons organized by the editor-in-chief of FCT, A. Wallace Hayes, in response to criticisms of the study by pro-GMO scientists.[4,5]

          “In a letter to Prof Séralini, Hayes admitted that the anonymous reviewers found nothing ‘incorrect’ about the results presented. However, Hayes pointed to what he said was the ‘inconclusive’ nature of some aspects of the paper, namely the tumour and mortality observations, to justify his decision to retract the study.[6]

          “The rationale given for the retraction was widely criticized by scientists as an act of censorship and a bow to the interests of the GMO industry.[7,8] Some scientists pointed out that numerous published scientific papers contain inconclusive findings, including Monsanto’s own short (90-day) study on the same GM maize, and have not been retracted.[9] The retraction was even condemned by a former member of the editorial board of FCT.[10]

          “Now the study has passed a third peer review arranged by the journal that is republishing the study, Environmental Sciences Europe.[11]

          To cull out that last paragraph, Seralini used Monstanto's protocol, the results of which were published in the same magazine some years earlier. Then it was all "PROOF! GMO IS COOL!" Using the same breed of rats. There was one difference. Monsanto's study was for a period 90 days; Seralini's was for two years. Yet 'science-lovers' take a 90-day study as somehow more informative of results long-term and a 700-day study?!

          I'm reminded of, regarding low-level radiation exposure, someone was touting no long-term ill effects on mice from a 100 day experiment on a breed of mice which, it turned out, lived for 6 months. But we all know by know the entire nuclear industry works by lies and slight-of-mind (for instance healthy 20-ish males used as a base for calculating effects of exposures on all people.)

          I'm constantly reminded of human folly, where nowadays we're supposed to take a White Lab Coat, some Arcane Statistics, and the ability to do sums and procedures in a very narrow range as if it had the force of religion. Instead of the now-overthrown Fancy Robes, Arcane Language and the ability to perform complex rituals. As if human corruptibility and blindness are banished by having some narrow area of expertise.

          In both communities, one must really NOT invoke criticism or skepticism. Or else get branded as 'against reality.' Especially ignored are scientists who doubt the official 'religion-in-drag-as-science' pronouncements.

          Think second-hand smoke, cigarettes itself, Vioxx, asbestos, car exhaust (leaded and unleaded)... you can name 100 things which had a bevy of scientists saying 'no problem here' yet in reality there were major problems.

          (I happen to be friends with the daughter of the guy who first pushed 'second-hand' smoke as a concern. He was on 60 minutes some years ago telling his story. Which included his children being shadowed by strangers on their way to and from school; being ordered to not publish at a Government agency; being pushed from lead researcher to a do-nothing basement office ... Seriously what the fuck do people think happens when huge money is involved? Anybody saying they are science-supporters while ignoring the extreme social, political, economic pressures of science as practiced is ... simply willfully blindfolding themselves.)

          Reality says a two year study on long-term effects has more merit than a 90-day study when all other elements are identical. So there's that. Reality can't be banished by defamation, either.


          A government is a body of people usually notably ungoverned. -- Firefly

          by Jim P on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 07:53:40 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  this is pure baloney (15+ / 0-)

            Seralini's study was withdrawn because his own data showed that the rats who were NOT fed any GMO, any at all, also got tumors---which meant his conclusion was horse shit (or, as the journal politely put it, "his conclusikon was not supported by his data").

            If you would like to explain to us how the GMO managed to cause cancer in the rats that DID NOT EAT ANY, please feel entirely free to do so.

            In the end, reality always wins.

            by Lenny Flank on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 08:03:28 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  uh........ (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              mwm341, T100R, sethtriggs
              If you would like to explain to us how the GMO managed to cause cancer in the rats that DID NOT EAT ANY, please feel entirely free to do so.
              . . . .  I'm still waiting.

              Is there some sort of problem?

              In the end, reality always wins.

              by Lenny Flank on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 11:56:54 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  That doesn't make a lick of sense. (0+ / 0-)

                Are you asserting that rats can't get cancer, period? GMO or not?

                Or are you going with the 'used a strain of rats prone to cancer?' Then why did the same strain used by Monsanto get NO cancers?

                Look man, if people are going to claim to be scientific and all, they have to be able to employ logic, reason, and critical faculties, eh?

                As to the bigger issue you pointedly ignore of why 'scientists' are losing credibility you can read the NY Times story, inspired by Nature's own study which says Studies find fraud is widespread in retracted scientific papers, such papers becoming 'epidemic.'

                And again, how can one convince others that they are reality-based if they deny the role of money, buying political influence, career concerns... in short, plain corruption, plays in the real-earth scientific community. This is not a population of Galileos pursing pure truth, you must admit.


                A government is a body of people usually notably ungoverned. -- Firefly

                by Jim P on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 11:53:51 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

          •  ps--this is flat-out not true (15+ / 0-)
            What do you make of the fact that Europe, China, etc have made it a point to ban GMO crops; not only raising them but importing them?
            Virtually NO country has banned the production of GMOs---what Europe and the others have done is ban their IMPORT. They do NOT ban the domestic production or sale of GMOs.

            You can see for yourself here:

            http://naturalsociety.com/...

            If Europe really thinks GMOs will kill them all omigodz . . . .  then why DON'T they ban its production or sale there?

            Answer: it's a trade issue, not a safety issue. The Eu has been trying since the 90's to limit the import of American agricultural products in order to protect its own native agribusiness, but every such attempt has been shot down by the WTO as an "unfair trade practice".  So by banning the import of GMO crops, the EU bans the import of most of the American harvest--which is what it has been trying to do for 20 years now--and does an end run around all the WTO rulings against it (though it's a safe bet the GMO ban will also go to the WTO for a ruling).

            In the end, reality always wins.

            by Lenny Flank on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 08:20:21 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  I lived in Europe for two years and had no food... (3+ / 0-)

              I lived in Europe for two years and had no food allergy upsets while eating wheat. within a year of returning to the US the food allergies started. there I was very healthy. Most older Europeans remain healthy longer than American counterparts. it's what they eat for the most part, or rather what they don't eat. in Europe the food is grown closer to where food is consumed by small farmers using seed they collect each fall that has been used for generations. their whole food system is different. it's better.

            •  the weasel word "Virtually" tips off pure bullshit (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Joieau, flowerfarmer

              every time.

              You've hit the nail on the head that it's about business, where it has been permitted, and not safety.

              Italy: Rome, Milan, etc has banned GMOs, under an Italian law which permits regions to decide. Here we can't even fucking know what is GMO'd.

              Austria, Germany, Luxemburg, Portugal, Greece, Spain, UK, Switzerland, Norway, Australia, New Zealand, Thailand, Phillippines, Saudi Arabia(!), Egypt (is Egypt part of the EU trade conspiracy now?), Algeria, Brazil, Paraguay....

              http://www.organicconsumers.org/...

              So these are all part of the EU trade conspiracy, eh? Some of those nations have banned maize, but many of them have banned all manner of crops.

              But you believe there's no GMO-producer conspiracy to push forward pure crap which a) doesn't deliver what it promises, b) locks in a revenue stream for them, and c) might well be harmful.

              Of course, any scientist with a brain, knowledge, and integrity will tell you that if you interfere with a complex system by introducing radical new elements, there's no telling what the consequences might be down the road. Oddly, GMO pushers never acknowledge that established fact about systems. Won't even touch it.


              A government is a body of people usually notably ungoverned. -- Firefly

              by Jim P on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 12:05:26 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

      •  He's much, much smarter than any (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        mwm341

        of us here, and he understands GMOs better than anyone here. I don't think you realize how smart he is.

    •  Calc of variations, linear algebra (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      mwm341, cville townie

      and differential equations.  That's about all you need to start with in GR.  The rest are short, special subjects and there are Youtube videos for each: specifically Einstein notation, the definition of a tensor (if you haven't encountered it in linear algebra, and I prefer an ED intro), covariant derivatives and Christoffel symbols.  

      Sadomathmeticians go another route.

    •  Meh. (3+ / 0-)

      I like the guy myself -- my rant against the discussion topic aside -- but it does no good to hold him up as an authority on the basis of his profession.  Cosmologists have been known to support some seriously loony things outside of their sphere of expertise.  Tyson isn't a loon, and to all appearances has as much knowledge in this field as any non-specialist could be expected to have.

      But nobody cares if it's J.Q. Cell Biologist or Random Ph. D Nutritionist talking on this subject, no we have to go to a famous Cosmologist for pontification.  Irritates me.

    •  I admire Tyson, too, but I wouldn't turn to him (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      cville townie, Joieau

      ... for understanding of genetic dynamics in ecosystems. I don't think GMO is a problem nutritionally, not a problem to eat it; but what kind of unplanned consequences can occur by turning exotic genes loose in the environment. I don't think astrophysics qualifies him to have an expert opinion on that.

      And then there's the economic problem of patents on the gene sequences, and other farmers being sued when some Monsanto pollen gets into their seeds. More generally, there's the problem of non-viable hybrid seeds (the other kind of "engineering" he's pointing to) which make it impossible to save seeds to plant the next season, requiring dependence on and payments to the seed companies every year.

      So yeah, there's problems, just not with the nutritional aspects. It's safe to eat, just causes economic problems and potential Frankenstein-esque problems in the biosphere.

      Mark Twain: It ain't what you don't know that gets you into trouble. It's what you know for sure that just ain't so.

      by Land of Enchantment on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 11:23:49 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Expertise in one scientific area (0+ / 0-)

      does not confer expertise in ALL areas. Neil overstepped his bounds.

    •  No doubt Tyson is smart. But so are modern (0+ / 0-)

      biologists.  And chemists, and experts doing research at the border between known and unknown in any area of science.  Tyson would be the first to tell you that.  
      Still, it is a good idea to read at least scientific american level and make up your own mind.  Science is based on reproducible facts, so it is nice to know which facts come from where.  

  •  You Should Spread Out and Cover Both Morning (7+ / 0-)

    and evening instead of doubling up at the same hour.

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 04:10:39 PM PDT

  •  Academically they may be a good thing (25+ / 0-)

    but practically, GMOs are typified by immoral companies like Monsanto (who basically own the Dept of Ag) who don't work to make food better, but to make it resistant to the poisons they also happen to sell.

    Until we can get a handle on Monsanto and their ilk and regulate the shit out of them I don't see a problem with going after GMOs as a whole.

    Hillary does not have the benefit of a glib tongue.

    by The Dead Man on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 04:11:43 PM PDT

    •  So you disagree with Tyson on this (8+ / 0-)

      scientific matter?

      •  I love Tyson (31+ / 0-)

        but he isn't a biologist, of course, nor is he infallible in matters of Science. But this is not actually a matter of science as much as it is of regulatory policy.

        Fry, don't be a hero! It's not covered by our health plan!

        by elfling on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 04:42:52 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  I don't know if the "science" has really been (18+ / 0-)

        presented or even if the point of anti-GMO can be scientifically proven.

        The point is with profit motive as their baseline that bad things will be done for the environment and for human beings.

        Monoculture farming, for instance. Scientifically proven to be bad, right? But that's not really GMOs fault, so no science.

        Unintentional seed contamination. Not exactly science.

        That large caveat he offered about roping 3rd world countries into captive markets for non-reproducing seeds? That's not science either.

        So one is not really disagreeing with Tyson's science, it's disagreement with his perspective. I think his qualifications in the longer piece spoke a bit to this.

        I would love to take a ride down the rabbit hole with him. What would it take to scare you about GMOs? Kind of questions. I'm sure he'd be full of terror inducing ideas there.

        I'd also like to talk with him about the institutions that do that stuff and get his sense of the Regulatory Revolving Door and of our lack of a Precautionary Principle.

        I think the Lead episode of his show speaks plainly towards the kind of blind spot that GMOs are in the Establishment, and I think that would be a fascinating discussion to have with him.

        Wonder if he likes dogs? :-)

        Love his show and his passion for science, and am a BIG fan of Cosmos.

        Democracy - 1 person 1 vote. Free Markets - More dollars more power.

        by k9disc on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 04:44:38 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  BTW, Slightly off topic but still GMO (21+ / 0-)

          I am a farmer and we are having hell with Round up ready crops this year. Seems as though there is a very large population of Roundup Ready resistance weeds. I still grow the old fashioned kind of corn.

          Don't tell me when you add genes that are not specific to genome that you know what will happen. The closest to nature of a cross species cross is that of a Donkey and a Horse and it has to be artificially manipulated to breed and the final product is sterile. That is somewhat NATURAL crossing of species. The Donkey would have to get the horse drunk in nature so he could mount the mare.

          •  Good comment. (8+ / 0-)

            What the diarist and Tyson gloss over is that human induced cross-breeding is something nature does on its own. Manually injecting mammal genes into plants is not.

            Corporations, which should be the carefully restrained creatures of the law and the servants of the people, are fast becoming the people’s masters. -- President Grover Cleveland, 1888

            by edg on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 07:11:55 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  If you don't use roundup (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            ban nock, T100R, Fonsia

            why would roundup resistant weeds be a problem for you?

            What will happen the next time the mob comes?--Neil deGrasse Tyson

            by mem from somerville on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 07:24:48 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  recced for the barnyard drunk mare stuff. (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Unduna

            “Conservation… is a positive exercise of skill and insight, not merely a negative exercise of abstinence and caution…” Aldo Leopold

            by ban nock on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 07:51:07 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  This is consistent with my problem with GMOs. I... (9+ / 0-)

            This is consistent with my problem with GMOs. It is usually not the GMO itself that is the problem, it is secondary effects like spraying extra herbicides. Monopolies and monoculture. And, the choice of modifications pursued. A GMO that reduced water usage of a crop by 20% could be a huge game changer.

          •  um . . . (6+ / 0-)

            Roundup has been sprayed on non-GMO crops for 40 years now, and has been producing Roundup-resistant weeds even before the GMO genes ever even appeared.  (In fact, the Roundup-resistant GMO gene itself was not made by Monsanto--they took it from a weed that had already developed resistance to Roundup, and inserted it into the crop plants.)

            So if you outlaw Roundup tomorrow and shoot anyone who uses it, you'll still get Roundup sprayed on the non-GMO crops which replace the GMO, and the weeds will still develop the same resistance to it.  That is evolution in action.

            PS--we know EXACTLY what the GMO genes will do in nature, because all of them have already existed for billions of years. Monsanto didn't make ANY of them--they are ALL naturally-occurring genes. All Monsanto has done is move them from one organism to another one. BT, for instance, existed in bacteria for billions of years, and has already been sprayed on non-GMO crops for over 100 years.

            In the end, reality always wins.

            by Lenny Flank on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 08:47:15 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Sorry I am one of the stupid non scientist (0+ / 0-)

              readers of this site, but how do you spray an herbicide such as Round-Up on a non GMO food crop without killing it?

              •  you spray it to kill the weeds before the crops (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                polecat

                have sprouted.  It was done for 20 years before GMO crops ever even appeared. And it's still being done today on non-GMO crops.

                I do understand you are one of the stupid non-scientist readers of this site, but please at least TRY to understand SOMETHING of the topic before you blither about it.

                In the end, reality always wins.

                by Lenny Flank on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 06:27:26 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

              •  You spray it on the weeds, not the plants (0+ / 0-)

                See a weed? Spray it.  Kill it.

                But that kind of selective spraying is labor intensive and requires targeted action.  RUR plants let you just blanket the whole field.

                Glyphosate, aka Round Up, is only really toxic in high concentrations - it's 25 times less toxic than caffeine.  As long as they give it a rinse prior to it going to market, it's safe.

                The Cake is a lie. In Pie there is Truth. ~ Fordmandalay

                by catwho on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 06:31:52 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  glyphosate works by disabling a specific plant (5+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  catwho, T100R, polecat, sethtriggs, R30A

                  protein (one which is involved with cell division--it kills the plant by preventing its cells from reproducing it, forcing the plant to die of old age). Animals do not have that particular plant protein. Glyphosate has no effect on animals.

                  The toxic effects in Roundup are from the chemicals added to it to make the glyphosate stick to the plant leaves. Those effects are low-level, and are limited to certain aquatic organisms who absorb chemicals directly through their skin. That is why every container of roundup in the US contains a label warning not to use it near a water source.

                  In the end, reality always wins.

                  by Lenny Flank on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 07:06:30 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  Another question (0+ / 0-)

                    The chemicals other than glyphosate, is that what the warning  for human skin and contact is for? The label says to remove contaminated clothing and call Poison Control or physician. What is in it that is harmful to humans, if not glyphosate?

                    •  ... (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      cville townie

                      http://www.scientificamerican.com/...

                      Weed-Whacking Herbicide Proves Deadly to Human Cells
                      Used in gardens, farms, and parks around the world, the weed killer Roundup contains an ingredient that can suffocate human cells in a laboratory, researchers say
                      Jun 23, 2009 |By Crystal Gammon and Environmental Health News

                      "please love deeply...openly and genuinely." A. M. H.

                      by indycam on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 11:12:02 AM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  can you explain to us please how this (0+ / 0-)

                        cell-suffocating toxin gets from your stomach to your placental cells . . . . . . at levels enough to produce an effect . . . . . from eating ordinary amounts of residue . . . . ?

                        This is more of the same ole "saccharin causes cancer !!!!!! if you drink a hundred gallons of it a day" baloney.

                        I won't even bother to ask you to show us ONE example of this actually happening to anyone anywhere at any time, just ONE example.  You already know there isn't any.

                        In the end, reality always wins.

                        by Lenny Flank on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 02:49:25 PM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  1) "your placental cell" ? (0+ / 0-)

                          Being a male as I am , your question is funny to say the least .

                          2) "from your stomach to your placental cells" ?
                          How does anything ?

                          3) "from eating ordinary amounts of residue . . . . ?"
                          What is an "ordinary amount" ?
                          Would you eat a crop that was just desiccated with round up ?"
                          Would you allow a pregnant woman to be near a field where roundup was being sprayed ? Would you allow her to work in a field where it had just been sprayed ?

                          You already know there isn't any.
                          Prove it .

                          How much industrial grade roundup are you willing to drink daily ?

                          It's pointless to talk with you ,

                          This is more of the same ole "saccharin causes cancer !!!!!! if you drink a hundred gallons of it a day" baloney.
                          you play small little games that are worthless / unhelpful / offencive .

                          "please love deeply...openly and genuinely." A. M. H.

                          by indycam on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 03:27:26 PM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                          •  OK, so you don't even understand the question (0+ / 0-)

                            (sigh)

                          •  What a weak little comment . (2+ / 1-)
                            Recommended by:
                            flowerfarmer, cville townie
                            Hidden by:
                            Kasoru

                            (sigh)
                            http://www.dailykos.com/...
                            You should maybe see a doctor about that gas leak you suffer from .

                            "please love deeply...openly and genuinely." A. M. H.

                            by indycam on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 04:56:48 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  is that an insult . . . ? (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            Kasoru

                            Can I now expect all the self-righteous to swarm to HR you for that insult?

                            Silly me, of COURSE not.  It's only people on the OTHER side who get HRd . . .

                            (snicker)

                            PS--the link YOU provided claimed that placental and fetal cells were damaged by exposure to a chemical.  I asked a simple question-----> how exactly do those chemicals, if you eat the residue from them, get from your stomach to those placental or fetal cells, in dosages sufficient to actually do anything.

                            I do understand why you can't answer that question.

                            It's a scare story, the same as all those stories back in the day about how "dangerous" the "carcinogen" saccharine was---if you drank a hundred gallons of it a day.

                            In the end, reality always wins.

                            by Lenny Flank on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 05:13:25 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  You might want to think its an insult , (0+ / 0-)

                            I gave a link to the gas leak ,
                            "sigh"
                            "58 results were found"
                            between 07/05/2014 and today .

                            When you "sigh" what comes out ? Gas ?

                            Over that same time for everyone on the site
                            http://www.dailykos.com/...
                            616 results were found
                            616 - 58 = 558
                            58/558
                            Approximately 10% for just you .
                            You might want to get that checked .

                            I asked a simple question-----> how exactly do those chemicals, if you eat the residue from them, get from your stomach to those placental or fetal cells, in dosages sufficient to actually do anything.

                            "dosages sufficient to actually do anything."
                            How much is enough "to actually do anything" ?
                            Your OK with some as long as its not enough "to actually do anything" ? Interesting .
                            How much round up would you have a pregnant woman drink / eat each day ? What is the amount that you would say was to much ?
                            How much round up would you accept in mothers milk ?
                            If a woman was shown to have round up in her breast milk
                            would you say that is fine and dandy ?

                            "please love deeply...openly and genuinely." A. M. H.

                            by indycam on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 07:50:05 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Gas leak?!? (0+ / 0-)

                            Uncalled for and HR'rd for it.

                          •  Franky my dear (0+ / 0-)

                            I don't give a dang .

                            "please love deeply...openly and genuinely." A. M. H.

                            by indycam on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 07:05:57 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                        •  How about your making up a list (0+ / 0-)

                          of all the negative / bad / harm , that comes from roundup use ?
                          Knock yourself with a full assessment and write up of all the externalities / downsides , associated with the worldwide use of roundup .
                          Show us all what a great handle you have on the subject .

                          "please love deeply...openly and genuinely." A. M. H.

                          by indycam on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 03:36:04 PM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                          •  yopu do understand, right, that Roundup is sprayed (0+ / 0-)

                            on non-GMO plants too, where it produces exactly the same environmental effects . . . .?

                            PS--Roundup has already been sprayed into the environment for 40 years--20 of that before GMOs even existed.  We already know its environmental effects, because we've been looking at them for almost half a century now.

                          •  You failed to make the list of all the (0+ / 0-)

                            downsides , you have merely gone back to your tired old arguments , and that is exactly the failure I expected of you .

                            You really don't have a good handle on the subject , I know that you claim that you do but you have been making the same mistakes over and over , and that shows your failure to understand .

                            Make up a list of known problems with worldwide round up use or fail to make up the list , not my problem , but please stop with the little tiny abusive insulting games .

                            "please love deeply...openly and genuinely." A. M. H.

                            by indycam on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 05:09:18 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  you DO understand that Roundup is sprayed on (0+ / 0-)

                            non-GMO crops too, and was for 20 years before GMOs even appeared--where they produce exactly the same environmental effects.

                            Right?

                            PS--Roundup has been in use for almost half a century.  Its environmental effects are not exactly a secret:

                            Glyphosate has a United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Toxicity Class of III (on a I to IV scale, where IV is least dangerous) for oral and inhalation exposure.[22] Thus, as with other herbicides, the EPA requires that products containing glyphosate carry a label that warns against oral intake, mandates the use of protective clothing, and instructs users not to re-enter treated fields for at least 4 hours.[22][43] Glyphosate does not bioaccumulate in animals; it is excreted in urine and feces.[22] It breaks down variably quickly depending on the particular environment.
                            Human[edit]
                            Human acute toxicity is dose related. Acute fatal toxicity has been reported in deliberate overdose.[42][44] Early epidemiological studies have not found associations between long term low level exposure to glyphosate and any disease.[45][46][47]
                            The EPA considers glyphosate to be noncarcinogenic and relatively low in dermal and oral acute toxicity.[22] The EPA considered a "worst case" dietary risk model of an individual eating a lifetime of food derived entirely from glyphosate-sprayed fields with residues at their maximum levels. This model indicated that no adverse health effects would be expected under such conditions.[22]
                            The European Commission's review of the data conducted in 2002 concluded that there was equivocal evidence of a relationship between glyphosate exposure during pregnancy and cardiovascular malformations; however, a review published in 2013 found that the evidence "fails to support a potential risk for increased cardiovascular defects as a result of glyphosate exposure during pregnancy."[48]
                            Effects on fish and amphibians[edit]
                            Glyphosate is generally less persistent in water than in soil, with 12 to 60 day persistence observed in Canadian pond water, yet because glyphosate binds to soil, persistence of over a year has been observed in the sediments of ponds in Michigan and Oregon.[22] In streams, maximum glyphosate concentrations were measured immediately post-treatment and dissipated rapidly.[22] According to research done in the late 1980s and early 1990 (Ecotoxicological Risk Assessment for Roundup Herbicide), glyphosate in ecological exposures studied is "practically nontoxic to slightly toxic" for amphibians and fish.[49]
                            Soil degradation, and effects on micro-organisms and worms[edit]

                            Degradation pathway of glyphosate in the ground[49]
                            When glyphosate comes into contact with the soil, it can be rapidly bound to soil particles and be inactivated.[22][50] Unbound glyphosate can be degraded by bacteria.[51] Glyphosate and its degradation product, aminomethylphosphonate (AMPA), residues are considered to be much more toxicologically and environmentally benign than most of the herbicides replaced by glyphosate.[52]
                            In soils, half-lives vary from as little as three days at a site in Texas to 141 days at a site in Iowa.[50] In addition, the glyphosate metabolite aminomethylphosphonic acid has been found in Swedish forest soils up to two years after a glyphosate application. In this case the persistence of aminomethylphosphonic acid was attributed to the soil being frozen for most of the year.[53] Glyphosate adsorption to soil, and later release from soil, varies depending on the kind of soil.[54][55] A 2009 study using a RoundUp formulation concluded that absorption into plants delays subsequent soil-degradation and can increase glyphosate persistence in soil from two to six times.[56]
                            A laboratory study published in 1992 indicated that glyphosate formulations could harm earthworms[57] and beneficial insects.[58] However, the reported effect of glyphosate on earthworms has been criticized.[49] The results conflict with results from field studies where no effects were noted for the number of nematodes, mites, or springtails after treatment with Roundup at 2 kilograms active ingredient per hectare.[59]
                            It has been suggested that glyphosate can harm the bacterial ecology of soil and cause micronutrient deficiencies in plants,[60] including nitrogen-fixing bacteria.[61][62] A 2012 study on the effect of Roundup (glyphosate with adjuvants) on three microorganisms used in dairy products found while the formulation had "a microbicide effect at lower concentrations than those recommended in agriculture", glyphosate alone "at these levels has no significant effect".[63]

                            http://en.wikipedia.org/...

                            In the end, reality always wins.

                            by Lenny Flank on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 05:18:21 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  my question to you: (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            T100R

                            Which of these effects is different depending on whether the glyphosate is sprayed on a GMO crop instead of a non-GMO corp.

                            Please be as specific as possible.

                            Thanks.

                            In the end, reality always wins.

                            by Lenny Flank on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 05:22:23 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  You are asking yourself the question . (0+ / 0-)

                            I hope you will be better able to answer the question that you ask of yourself .
                            If you could somehow come to answer your question to yourself accurately , then you would be maybe showing some progress , but I'll not hold my breath waiting for you to get up to speed .  

                            "please love deeply...openly and genuinely." A. M. H.

                            by indycam on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 05:45:52 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  I already know the answer (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            T100R

                            The answer is "the GMO makes no difference at all. Glyphosate is glyphosate is glyphosate, no matter what it is sprayed on."

                            In the end, reality always wins.

                            by Lenny Flank on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 06:13:22 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  You have no problems with roundup . (0+ / 0-)

                            Roundup can do no wrong .
                            No problems have ever come from using roundup
                            and no problems will ever come from using roundup .

                            And that is where your argument fails / falls flat on its face .
                            You fail intentionally or unintentionally to see the problems resulting from roundup use . You brush everything under the rug and pretend its not there . That is not science . That is make believe and just a sad little game .
                            Write up all the problems with roundup use world wide ,
                            that would be a start to show that you are more than just a cheerleader who believes there are no downsides whatsoever wherever .

                            "please love deeply...openly and genuinely." A. M. H.

                            by indycam on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 09:38:19 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  and you can't read /nt (0+ / 0-)

                            In the end, reality always wins.

                            by Lenny Flank on Wed Aug 06, 2014 at 04:18:34 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  What an interesting thing to say ! (0+ / 0-)

                            Your games are small and weak .
                            You fail to answer the questions , you dodge and deflect .
                            You are showing your true colors by playing small little games .

                            "please love deeply...openly and genuinely." A. M. H.

                            by indycam on Wed Aug 06, 2014 at 06:54:31 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Your same old tired arguments , (0+ / 0-)

                            boring and old .
                            Now how about that list of all the problems with world wide round up use ?
                            Do you think you will ever get around to that ?
                            Or will it just be the same old same old all the way down ?

                            "please love deeply...openly and genuinely." A. M. H.

                            by indycam on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 05:41:37 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

        •  Excellent comment (10+ / 0-)

          You've summed up most of my personal concerns about GMO and my feelings about Tyson's statements.  Thanks, you must be an expert :)

          However, I would strongly disagree with Tyson's equivalence between modifications accomplished through breeding (GMO-agricultural) vs. genetic manipulation in the lab (GMO-laboratory).  While the resulting modifications may appear similar in kind, these two methods are magnitudes apart in the degree of potential change and unforeseen consequences.

          Genetic engineering, as a science, is still in it's relative infancy.  We understand how some of the bits work and can do some neat stuff with cut and paste, but we're far from understanding how complete genomes function in and of themselves, let alone how they might interact long-term with other organisms in the Earth's natural biome.

          I would argue that we should proceed exceeding carefully in modifying any organism, but even more so in experimenting with anything that constitutes part of our basic food supply.  No one's going to die from getting their cosmology wrong (religion aside), but taking risks with our food supply could have disastrous impact.  I don't hear anywhere near that kind of caution reflected in Tyson's statements and that concerns me.  

      •  No, I think it's an agreement on the (6+ / 0-)

        Science, and disagreement on the politics and economics of agribusiness. But a willingness to use populist anti-scientific attitudes as a weapon.

        Mixed feelings about the first, strong feelings against the second. It's not just hypocrisy, it's riding a tiger--like the GOP and the Tea Party. You wind up with the Mad Hatter and the March Hare.

      •  I agree with him as far as he goes. Did anyone (10+ / 0-)

        ask him if the increased toxicity of new pesticides and herbicides are safe for the environment? The possible ramifications of killing off any number of helpful insects? The possibility of GMOs creating super-insects, bacteria, and worms through evolution? (which is already happening, btw).

        Here the difference between artificial selection and GMO is most pronounced. Artificial selection takes time, many generations in which the ramifications can be determined. GMOs provide for instantaneous change, and a degree of change that is orders of magnitude greater than Artificial Selection.

        •  There is an answer to this (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          mwm341, Kevskos, catwho, T100R

          But the agriculture business ignored it.

          Basically, it's a recommendation for moderation in usage.  For example, scientists recommended that only a fraction of corn should be of a borer-resistenat variety (I think the recommendation was for something like 1/3 or maybe 1/2, I don't recall exactly).  The Ag lobby didn't like that recommendation and adjusted to a recommendation of using a much higher percentages (like 3/4 or something).  In actual practice, farmers ignored the recommendations and planted damned near 100% of the GMO corn.

          The result was more rapid evolution of borers that could eat the GMO crop, bypassing the resistance.  Had farmers and the Ag lobby followed the advice of scientists, the selection pressure for resistant bugs wouldn't have been nearly as great and would have kept a much larger pool of non-resistant genes in the populations.  

          Instead, the result was the we got the resistant bugs decades before they might have become an issue otherwise.

          •  alas, though, that is a fight we can never win (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Witgren, catwho, T100R

            Any pesticide is only good for a limited time before its target develops resistance to it. That is evolution in action, and we can never stop it.  At best, we can do what we can to delay it for as long as we can. But in the end, evolution is smarter than we are.

            Weeds were already beginning to develop resistance to Roundup before the GMO even appeared (indeed, the Roundup-Ready gene was simply taken out of a weed that had already developed resistance to Roundup). So it won't be long now before Roundup itself will no longer be used, since too many weeds will be resistant. That's why Monsanto is already looking to start making 2,4-D-resistant plants. Until the weeds develop resistance to that too.

            In the end, reality always wins.

            by Lenny Flank on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 11:24:40 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  True (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              T100R

              The scientific recommendations made it clear that limiting usage would extend the usefulness of the crop, but wouldn't stop the evolution of the borers.  IIRC, the scientific thought was that if the recommendations were followed, it would buy about 20 years or so.

            •  RoundUp resistance... (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              SilentBrook

              The problem I have with Roundup-resistant plants is that it makes indiscriminate use of Roundup more likely. Indiscriminate use of Roundup speeds up the evolutionary processes by which weeds develop RoundUp resistance, which renders Roundup useless in the long run (or in this case the shorter run).

              I'm not particularly worried about consuming food around which Roundup has been used. I'm willing to accept the science that indicates that it degrades quickly and that rinsing the food before eating it is sufficient to render it safe to consume. However, Roundup resistance will result in the need for new herbicides about whose safety we can know nothing, since they are imaginary at present.

              In addition, if the overuse of Roundup results in an absence of milkweed and the extinction of Monarch butterflies, well that's a damn shame and completely unnecessary. It may be useful to control weeds in agriculture, but it's not necessary to completely eliminate them. Maybe Monstanto could win some points for developing a Roundup-resistant milkweed and mixing some of its seeds in with its food-plant seeds to ensure a sufficient supply of Monarch food. ;-)

              By the way, this is entirely analogous to the indiscriminate use of antibiotics in cattle to get them to be more productive and to grow faster, which has resulted in the faster evolution of antibiotic-resistant microbes, which are killing people. Since the pharmaceutical industry finds it insufficiently profitable (after all, once an antibiotic has cured a patient, the patient stops using it) to produce new antibiotics, this is a big problem. To quote Rick Perry, "Oops." (Unintended consequences are a bitch.)

              •  Roundup is used on non-GMO too. has been for (0+ / 0-)

                20 years.

                We can ban GMOs tomorrow, and it won't have any effect on the use of Roundup.

                In the end, reality always wins.

                by Lenny Flank on Wed Aug 06, 2014 at 02:06:45 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  But my point is... (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  SilentBrook

                  The excessive use of Roundup is encouraged by the existence of Roundup-resistant crops. Farmers can't blanket their fields with Roundup while their non-Roundup-resistant crops are growing. Excessive use of Roundup leads to Roundup-resistant weeds, which leads to the need for new herbicides to kill Roundup-resistant weeds.

                  As with antibiotic-resistant microbes, where not using a given antibiotic for some period of time results in the loss of selection for microbes resistant to that antibiotic and the resurgence of microbes sensitive to that antibiotic, so with Roundup-resistant weeds, reducing the use of Roundup reduces the selective pressure for Roundup-resistant weeds.

                  •  and your point is baloney (0+ / 0-)

                    First, if excessive use of pesticide is the problem, the simple obvious solution is to ban the pesticide. Blaming GMOs for the effects of pesticide we spray on them is like blaming grass for the effects of fertilizer runoff we spray on it.  It's silly.

                    Second, Roundup is far less toxic than anything it replaced.  Roundup works by disabling a particular plant protein. It does nothing at all to anything (like animals) that does not have that plant protein.

                    Third, resistance appears in weeds (not in microbes) whether the crops it is sprayed on are GMO or not.  There were already Roundup-resistant weeds before GMOs even appeared, since Roundup was already being sprayed on NON-GMO crops for 20 years.  In fact, the Roundup-Ready gene was itself taken by Monsanto out of a weed that had already developed resistance to Roundup during those years of use. Monsanto did not make that gene--Mother Nature made it for them.

                    Fourth, the level of Roundup usage per unit of crop is not significantly higher on GMO fields than it is on non-GMO (the figures I remember show about a 15% increase--lower than what can be found from ordinary variances in dispersion caused by wind or weather). Once you spray enough herbicide on a weed to kill it, you don't NEED to spray more than that.

                    Why oh why why why do the GMO CTers insist on talking ignorantly about things they don't know anything about . . .?  (sigh)

                    In the end, reality always wins.

                    by Lenny Flank on Thu Aug 07, 2014 at 07:30:31 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  Trying not to take offense by your tone, but... (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      bethann
                      First, if excessive use of pesticide is the problem, the simple obvious solution is to ban the pesticide. Blaming GMOs for the effects of pesticide we spray on them is like blaming grass for the effects of fertilizer runoff we spray on it.  It's silly.
                      Second, Roundup is far less toxic than anything it replaced.  Roundup works by disabling a particular plant protein. It does nothing at all to anything (like animals) that does not have that plant protein.
                      If Monsanto didn't intend to make it possible to spray Roundup on established crops, why did they insert the resistance gene into those crops? It's not silly at all to consider Roundup-resistant crops to be an enabler of overuse of Roundup. I have no problem accepting the notion that Roundup is a relatively benign herbicide. In fact, that's an argument in favor of trying to keep it useful in the long run instead of abusing it in the short run.
                      Third, resistance appears in weeds (not in microbes) whether the crops it is sprayed on are GMO or not.  There were already Roundup-resistant weeds before GMOs even appeared, since Roundup was already being sprayed on NON-GMO crops for 20 years.  In fact, the Roundup-Ready gene was itself taken by Monsanto out of a weed that had already developed resistance to Roundup during those years of use. Monsanto did not make that gene--Mother Nature made it for them.
                      No doubt all true. So what? Resistance in crops allows the overuse of Roundup adding selective pressure for resistance in weeds, resulting in its eventual uselessness in controlling weeds.
                      Fourth, the level of Roundup usage per unit of crop is not significantly higher on GMO fields than it is on non-GMO (the figures I remember show about a 15% increase--lower than what can be found from ordinary variances in dispersion caused by wind or weather).
                      I'll take your word for the numbers, but it would seem to indicate that farmers are not taking advantage of the sole benefit of Roundup-resistant crops, in which case why plant them?
                      Once you spray enough herbicide on a weed to kill it, you don't NEED to spray more than that.
                      From personal experience, killing existing weeds doesn't prevent new ones from germinating. This means that there is a temptation to spray again to kill the new weeds. Without Roundup-resistant crops, farmers must be more careful about the application of Roundup once the crops are growing, or even to live with some amount of secondary weed growth.

                      I'm perfectly happy to eat GMed food in most cases. I'm merely philosophically opposed to Roundup resistance in foods for the reasons I've attempted to present - apparently with limited success. If I knew what a CTer was, I suppose I might be offended by your last remark. And, for what it's worth, I don't think I'm "talking ignorantly". You seem to be purposely missing my point. Maybe other readers will understand it.

      •  Not a scientific matter, to me (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Yasuragi, MichaelNY, Kevskos, spearfish

        It is a policy matter having to do with who "owns" the planet, the seeds, the patents, etc.

      •  I disagree with his premise that plant breeding (3+ / 0-)

        is the same thing as genetic engineering...they are not. He made a basic error in logic when he conflates the two processes. Since he starts from an invalid premise his conclusions are also then invalid.

        Really don't mind if you sit this one out. My words but a whisper -- your deafness a SHOUT. I may make you feel but I can't make you think..Jethro Tull

        by RMForbes on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 10:30:02 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Naw (6+ / 0-)

          I've taken some pretty high level botany classes and mucked around in plant genomes (the lab I helped at was working on duckweed's genome at the time.)  

          Plants are WEIRD.  Corn has randomly doubled its genome twice since mass agriculture started, long before GMOs were a thing.

          The Cake is a lie. In Pie there is Truth. ~ Fordmandalay

          by catwho on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 06:35:17 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Just because plants continue to evolve (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            flowerfarmer

            does not mean that natural evolution and genetic engineering are in anyway the same thing. In the natural evolution, these plants very rarely randomly adds genes from bacteria, insects, birds, animals and even humans like are routinely spliced into the plants with genetic engineering.

            Really don't mind if you sit this one out. My words but a whisper -- your deafness a SHOUT. I may make you feel but I can't make you think..Jethro Tull

            by RMForbes on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 11:32:12 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Routinely? (4+ / 0-)

              Once they've confirmed that they've added the target genes and it is expressing in the organism (e.g. they can detect Bt toxin, they confirm the offspring is sterile), they are usually done with that particularly project.

              And plants are totally okay with hybridizing themselves into sterility in nature, just to note.  Natural peppermint is a sterile hybrid of spearmint and water mint.  Because of this hybridization, the chromosomal counts are all over the place.  Genetically, it is one of the most singularly confused organizations on the planet (even beating out non-GMO, standard cultivated corn).  And yet it thrives, and we cultivate it, because it is delicious.

              The Cake is a lie. In Pie there is Truth. ~ Fordmandalay

              by catwho on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 01:28:00 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Again, how does all that prove (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                flowerfarmer

                that bio engineering is the same thing as selective breeding and natural selection? They are obviously not the same process at all. It's has been the pro-GMO forces that continually try to conflate bio engineering with natural processes. It is a lie.

                Really don't mind if you sit this one out. My words but a whisper -- your deafness a SHOUT. I may make you feel but I can't make you think..Jethro Tull

                by RMForbes on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 01:46:39 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  it achieves the same goal (4+ / 0-)

                  Desired characteristics.  One relies on chance mutations across generations, the other picks out the characteristic and adds it.

                  Some of those chance mutations actually did come from cross-species contamination, by way of accidental viral DNA transfers.  The human genome is littered with relics of viral DNA and snippets of genes from millions of years of accidental viral contamination.

                  It's like arguing that walking across the country is better than taking an airplane because walking is natural, planes can crash, and they'll both get you to the destination eventually.  Are walking and airplanes the same thing? Yes and no.  Yes they are both forms of transit.  But one is natural, and the other is just a thousand times more efficient.

                  So is selective breeding the same as direct genetic modification? Yes and no.  Yes, they are both forms of genetic engineering.  But one is natural, and the other is just a thousand times more efficient.

                  The Cake is a lie. In Pie there is Truth. ~ Fordmandalay

                  by catwho on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 02:07:54 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  In nature cross-species contamination is quite (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    flowerfarmer

                    rare and also very rarely leads to viable changes in the species. In many things efficiency does not always produce better outcomes and sometimes even creates disasters. I don't want to participate in your bio engineering experiments, I want to opt out. How do we do that?

                    Really don't mind if you sit this one out. My words but a whisper -- your deafness a SHOUT. I may make you feel but I can't make you think..Jethro Tull

                    by RMForbes on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 03:15:52 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  Grow your own food then (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      Paul Rogers

                      The ONLY way to know 100% what's inside anything you purchase is to grow it or make it yourself.

                      You call it a bio-engineering experiment - I call it sound science.

                      The Cake is a lie. In Pie there is Truth. ~ Fordmandalay

                      by catwho on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 08:12:37 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  I do grow most of my own food (1+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        RiveroftheWest

                        and genetic engineering may or may not be sound science. It still is an ongoing experiment with most of the American public being used as guinea pigs without their explicit consent. I just want to be able to opt out of this scientific experiment. That requires food to be labeled to if they contain bio engineered plants or animals or not.

                        We have the right to the information in order to make an informed choice. There is no valid reason to withhold this information from the consumer no matter if it is sound science or not.

                        Really don't mind if you sit this one out. My words but a whisper -- your deafness a SHOUT. I may make you feel but I can't make you think..Jethro Tull

                        by RMForbes on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 08:51:49 PM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

      •  YES. (0+ / 0-)

        Corporations before people.... it's the American way!

        by Lucy2009 on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 12:24:46 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  And Darwin always shows up and the plants (11+ / 0-)

      evolve to be resistant to the poison and then you need an even more dangerous poison.  But hey, someone's making $.

      And the vitamin A rice can't resist drought, so who needs expensive seeds that can't produce?

      And there is a difference between inserting genes from another critter and cross breeding; they didn't put frog genes into the watermelon to make it have fewer, smaller seeds.

      It did not take that long to create domesticated foxes; just breed the friendliest foxes to the friendliest foxes:

      http://en.wikipedia.org/...

      Kidlet says they do some good research, but I can't get over the evil.

      ...Son, those Elephants always look out for themselves. If you happen to get a crumb or two from their policies, it's a complete coincidence. -Malharden's Dad

      by slowbutsure on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 04:34:47 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Monsanto is no different than any other company. (6+ / 0-)

      I don't see how Monsanto isn't any more villainous than any general big corporation.  Dismissing urban legends, they just simply do the same thing any large corporation does.

      Turns out, once you get to be a big enough corporation the rules of capitalism (as they are now) change significantly enough to encourage all sorts of nasty behaviors.

      Focusing on one big-nasty isn't going to change the underlying rules that really are the source of such nastiness.  Focus on the rules.

    •  You mean theoretically, I think. (7+ / 0-)

      Yeah, its a mess.

      If you have to develop a plant just to stand up to the poison you're throwing around, you probably shouldn't be throwing it around in the first place.

      You have extremists on the pro-science side too.

      I was in the chemical industry for a time. They don't test anything for its effects on humans. But, if you question the latest compound coming out of Dow, you'd be called anti-science here.

    •  Which make them different from any other (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      aimeehs

      part of the industrial sector how?

      The "No GMOs because capitalism" argument just isn't practical.  By that logic we shouldn't have cars and gum drops either.

      If you think there's any other part of our manufacturing base that isn't just as crooked, you're wrong.  It's how the world works.

      We want to build cyber magicians!

      by VelvetElvis on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 07:13:47 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  how that happens: (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      serendipityisabitch

      When the public gets all screamy about GMOs, corporations that care about public opinion shy away from getting involved with GMOs.  But nasty corporations like Monsanto, that don't give a fiddler's fig about public opinion, see the opportunity and go for it.

      This becomes a self-fulfilling prophesy.

      If the public were scientifically literate and didn't freak out over words like "GMO" and "chemicals," there would be more startups and more companies with good corporate conscience involved.

      We got the future back. Uh-oh.

      by G2geek on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 01:04:55 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  So it's (0+ / 0-)

      'Kill 'em all, and let God sort 'em out'?

      Give me a break...

      Strengthen the Senate! ROCK THE HOUSE!

      by mwm341 on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 03:31:30 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I was under the impression that the (0+ / 0-)

      controversy involving GMOs (or at least, the legitimate controversy vis-a-vis health concerns) was that GMOs are being modified for the purpose of increasing crop yields by allowing the crops to resist degradation from the application of pesticides and develop their own resistance through Bacillus Thuringiensis.

      My understanding is that GM crops are being sprayed with considerably less pesticides, but far more herbicides which outweigh the proposed benefit.

      There has not been a strong showing of yield increase that I know of either. GMOs may produce a more stable yield year-to-year, but the claim of increased yields hasn't been shown to my knowledge.

      Could be wrong here, good science will change my opinion. However for the diarist to suggest that bringing up pesticide and herbicide application to the GMO crops we eat is a "different conversation" when those crops are being specifically developed to either limit or allow liberal application of said chemicals is disingenuous at best.

      I don't think many people appraised of the situation (even in a cursory manner such as myself) think its the GMO that is bad; most people are likely concerned with the Roundup product sprayed on the GMO Roundup Ready crop -it IS the same conversation.

  •  I had to scroll up to see where I was at. (8+ / 0-)
    His comment lead to a huge outcry from anti-GMO activists (read the comments on this article on the liberal website, Daily Kos–as a disclaimer, I also write there frequently).

    Most of the people taking a hard line against us are firmly convinced that they are the last defenders of civilization... The last stronghold of mother, God, home and apple pie and they're full of shit! David Crosby, Journey Thru the Past.

    by Mike S on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 04:14:07 PM PDT

  •  But is it safe for pollinators? (11+ / 0-)

    I preach the church without Christ, where the lame don't walk, the blind don't see and what's dead stays that way! Hazel Motes in "Wise Blood" (Flannery O'Connor)

    by chalatenango on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 04:18:05 PM PDT

    •  Regardless, (0+ / 0-)

      It doesn't seem to be the primary current danger for any of the top three B's (bees, butterflies and bats). And we, livestock and chickens will serve quite well as test animals for the bird and beast pollinators.

  •  The answer to this attitude (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    houyhnhnm, Fonsia, G2geek
    "Ilove science except when it doesn't support my beliefs."
    is to use the gift of reason given to us by the God of Nature. Reason was the only gift our Deist Founders believed we were given, which was to be used to study Creation to understand the Creator. It would seem to be reasonable to adjust said beliefs.

    Never promote men who seek after a state-established religion; it is spiritual tyranny--the worst of despotism. It is turnpiking the way to heaven by human law, in order to establish ministerial gates to collect toll. John Leland

    by J Edward on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 04:20:04 PM PDT

  •  Science is all about embracing context. (4+ / 0-)

    The full context of most peopl-- well, my anti-GMO stance isn't based on apprehension at the process of genetically modifying foods, but the why...

    I could go off on a tangent but I can probably just sum it up thusly: Do you trust Monsanto? Not in any specific way, just at all; about literally anything. If you do, you're a fool or a liar(and probably work for the IRS).

    "...So the world might be mended"

    by Cofcos on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 04:29:27 PM PDT

  •  Neil deGrasse Tyson has been WRONG before. (13+ / 0-)



    For an idea that does not at first seem insane, there is no hope.
                -- Albert Einstein:  Far left, emo-prog, socialist.

    by Pluto on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 04:32:57 PM PDT

  •  GMO processes, like any process (38+ / 0-)

    are inherently neither good nor bad.

    Buildings and bridges are a great public service. Yet, poorly built, they can kill people, cause environmental havoc, and create substantial property damage. Thus, we heavily regulate them to make sure the rules are followed.

    Considering how little we know about the genetic code, I am concerned there is substantial potential for peril. Consider something like the Heartbleed bug. That was in open source computer code, written by humans, completely understandable by humans, written in a human-defined language, reviewed by experts and in the public domain where thousands of other experts could have reviewed it at any time. Yet, there was a "catastrophic" (security expert Schneier's words) bug in that code for over a year.

    Computer code is relatively easy to fix, patch, and recall. Biological code, not so much. And given that we don't understand the purpose of something like 90% of the DNA of most organisms, it seems exceptionally easy to introduce errors (even 'buffer overrun' errors) that might not be apparent immediately. The oversight and incentives to prevent these problems seem weak at best. We've seen experimental GMO varieties escape without recourse.

    It's a great technology and careful use of it doesn't bother me; in fact it thrills me. Being able to say choose which allele you want at a particular locus within a species would be a great boon. But, that's so far not how it's being used, and most of the commercial products haven't been about improving the experience for the end consumer: they've been about selling herbicide or rent-seeking. Given that the companies that make these products do not have the resources to make the world whole again if they screw up, it sure would be nice if the products they were making had some benefit to the consumers which are bearing all the risk.

    There are some regulators, but they are not all that independent from the companies they regulate (revolving door) nor am I convinced that they have the resources or the expertise to fully evaluate any organism that comes by. It also seems that there is no obligation to show a gross societal benefit to the new organism - if you can sell it, then it's all good, right? It's quite a bit lower hurdle than we require for new drugs, just as an example.

    When you modify organisms with generations of selective breeding, you're restricted to certain alleles and you're not breaking apart nature's error correcting codes. When you're inserting alleles from other species that never existed in the organism, or perhaps even totally novel human-invented alleles, it's a different level of responsibility and I don't believe our general knowledge of genetics nor our regulatory system are yet sufficient to the challenge.

    Fry, don't be a hero! It's not covered by our health plan!

    by elfling on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 04:40:23 PM PDT

    •  What's the mechanism that causes harm? (7+ / 0-)

      How is one process of genetic manipulation more dangerous than the other?

      •  Greed (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Choco8, c0wfunk, Clues, cordgrass

        American Presidents: 43 men, 0 women. Ready for Hillary

        by atana on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 05:45:41 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Hahahaha (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Fonsia, aimeehs

          So, according to your definition, we would be doing without automobiles, indoor heating, A/C and pretty much every product invented since the industrial revolution in the mid 1800's.

          If  you would like to live as they did in 1800, be my guest.  But you don't get to decide what techno marvels the rest of us use.

          Grow your own food, textiles, pump your own water, etc.. have fun!

          •  Techno marvels are fine (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Choco8, Paul Rogers, c0wfunk

            but the social consequences of their introduction need to be dealt with. Plenty of techno marvels have produced plenty of good AND BAD outcomes.

            We need a responsive and responsible GOVERNMENT process (not profit-motivated) that CAN AND WILL REGULATE the outcomes.

            We at daily Kos believe in government, don't we?

            •  "we at Daily Kos believe in government don't we... (0+ / 0-)

              "we at Daily Kos believe in government don't we?"

              Not all of us. I believe in government on paper, but not in the government we've gotten in the past 50 years. President Eisenhower was the last president who worked for a strong middle class.

              no government here has worked to keep food safe or food sources safe. the government now only keeps corporations happy. God damn them all.

        •  yes, in a word (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Paul Rogers

          Greed.

          That is not a genetic mechanism, it is a POTENTIAL in human nature that MUST BE and CAN BE managed through culture (regulation, sanctions, morals, values).

      •  Several (25+ / 0-)

        The most critical and direct is the loss of biodiversity as GMO infect and dominate farmlands and wild areas just as invasive natural species can disseminate native populations. (If I have to explain why a loss of biodiversity is fundamentally bad you ought to study some basic biology.)

        Second, a majority of the GMOs promoted commercially are grains engineered for high yields when used with specific, proprietary herbicides that kill off not only weeds, but other natural plant species and pesticides that kill off not only nuisance insects but essential ones like bees. Ultimately, "super weed" mutations resistant to the herbicides develop and then you get another generation of herbicides, which them become essential regardless of whether you use the "proprietary" seeds. Rinse, repeat, pollute, kill-off nature species. Nice work!

        Third, the promotion of GMO creates "proprietary" nature where corporations promoting them take stocks from nature (which belong to everyone), engineer "patented" organisms that belong to the corporation, mate those GMO seeds with herbicides and pesticides in a package and then sell them together to generate profits and dominate markets, which transfers wealth from hard-working farmers to corporations. To protect that franchise, these corporations also sue farmers that don't use their products when their crops become infected with the proprietary species (wind blows seeds around) becoming "proof" of the famers "stealing" corporate intellectual property.

        So, what is deGrasse Tyson's solution to these problems?

        I mean, he's an astrophysicist and in command of the cosmos, so these trivial earth-bound problems should be a piece of cake, no?

        ~ ~ ~

        I'm not attacking deGrasse Tyson. I like him. I appreciate him promoting science. But in this case, he spoke out of turn on a subject where he has little apparent expertise and grasp of the issues involved (including the collateral) and he really ought to chill-out and accept the criticism coming his way at this point.

        •  Bravo, KoNko (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Yasuragi, MichaelNY

          You are making the case, thanks!!

        •  None of these problems are GMO-specific issues (12+ / 0-)

          The problem is not the use of GMOs, it is the practices of modern, industrial agriculture, which use exotic, artificially selected crop species, chemical control of pests in large monocultures that are more likely to initiate a vortex of resistance, and proprietary seeds (artificially selected instead of genetically modified). Hence, it is not really GMOs that you oppose, but the agricultural practices of the industry that uses them.

          Outlawing GMOs or making their use less common will not be a solution to any of the problems you bring up here. Your efforts would be better spent advocating for changes in agricultural practices if these are things you care about.

        •  um . . . . (5+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          T100R, nickrud, Fonsia, Armando, catwho

          I agree with you that GMO crops should be rendered sterile so they can't pollute wild gene pools.  But of course in the case of wheat and corn, they are totally artificial plants to begin with and are not found anywhere in nature.  Thgere is no wild wheat or corn.

          I also agree with all the non-science social, political and economic criticisms of Monsanto and its use of GMOs.

          But as for the pesticides, they are also sprayed on non-GMO plants, and have been for 40 years now. And that produces resistant weeds in the very same way that ther GMO crops do. The presence or absence of the GMO gene has zero effect on producing resistant weeds, and if we ban GMO tomorrow the resistance will still appear, just as it already has for hundreds of years before GMOs were even invented.  That is pure evolution, and we can't stop it.

          Alas, I have not seen a single valid SCIENTIFIC argument against GMOs. They've all been demonstrable bullshit. Everything from "GMOs cause cancer!!!" to "GMOs are less nutritious!!"

          As for your argument against Tyson, it's the very same argument, word for word, that the global-warming deniers and the creationists make against him.

          In the end, reality always wins.

          by Lenny Flank on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 07:42:45 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  I look forwards to a more enlightened discussion. (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          MichaelNY, Armando

          I notice none of those issues you bring up indicate that GMO crops are harmful to human health.

          Everything you mention is worth having in a discussion about proper business practices and regulation.  Both of which, you ought to know, are more effectively performed by oversight agencies like the EPA and the FDA, etc...

      •  Novel proteins. /nt (0+ / 0-)

        Happy little moron, Lucky little man.
        I wish I was a moron, MY GOD, Perhaps I am!
        —Spike Milligan

        by polecat on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 08:01:33 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Control of the vast majority of GM research (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      wayoutinthestix, R30A

      kind of bugs me.

      I'm not so concerned about human safety, but impact on the environment. And thats because the scientists who complain about research restrictions, are concerned about environmental impacts more than human safety.

      .................expect us......................... FDR 9-23-33, "If we cannot do this one way, we will do it another way. But do it we will.

      by Roger Fox on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 06:46:02 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  the impact on the environment comes from the (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        T100R, Fonsia, Armando, cordgrass

        pesticides that are sprayed on the GMO plants.

        Alas, there are two things to note about that:

        1. the very same pesticides are also sprayed on non-GMO plants, and have been for over 20 years.

        2. blaming GMO plants for the effects of pesticides because we spray pesticides on GMO plants, is like blaming grass for the effects of fertilizer runoff because we spray fertilizer on grass.  it's idiotic.

        Banning GMOs tomorrow won't affect any of those chemicals--they'll just get sprayed on non-GMOs instead.

        Banning the PESTICIDES, though, will have the desired effect.

        In the end, reality always wins.

        by Lenny Flank on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 07:14:29 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Roundup resistant weeds are the result of roundup (0+ / 0-)

          ready crops. They are resulting in massive increases in the amount of roundup used. Nobody is blaming GMO's for pesticide resistance. Roundup resistance is another matter.

          Barbara Lee and Howard Dean Speak for me! -9.25 -9.18

          by laurak on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 10:35:33 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  you are utterly wrong (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Armando, T100R

            Roundup resistance weeds already appeared years before any GMO crops appeared.  In fact, the Roundup-resistant gene itself was not made by Monsanto--they found it in a weed that ALREADY HAD DEVELOPED natural resistance to Roundup.

            In the end, reality always wins.

            by Lenny Flank on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 11:02:50 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  ps--I keep seeing the fringers SAY this, but (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Armando, T100R

            nobody ever seems able to produce some figures to SHOW it.

            Show us the figure for pounds of Roundup applied per acre for a GMO field, and the pounds per acre of Roundup applied to a non-GMO field.

            (NOTE_ this is NOT the same thing as the total pounds usedf, since that depends on the total acres of each. I want a specific apples-to-apples comparison----pounds per acre in one vs the other.)

            I suspect that NONE of you even has any idea what those figures are, and are just pulling this assertion out of your butts.

            (PS--I have seen ONE such comparison--and it was not a "massive increase". But I want to see if you'all are honest enough to cite some real figures, or if you'll just continue to pull this assertion out of your butt.)

            In the end, reality always wins.

            by Lenny Flank on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 11:08:09 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

    •  on the other hand, all of us here have already (5+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Marcus Tullius, T100R, Fonsia, aimeehs, Brian A

      been eating GMOs for decades now, whether we like it or not. Over 90% of all the corn and soy in the US is GMO--and virtually anything edible, from ice cream to corn flakes, has corn and/or soy in it. So we've had 300-million people eating GMOs for 20 years----and there has been no demonstrated large-scale harmful effect on anyone, anywhere, by any of it. No "safety study" could ever match that size or timescale.

      The whole "safety" issue is a non-starter. And every "scientific argument" against GMO has been flat-out baloney, demonstrably wrong. That is why my objections to Monsanto and its use of GMO are social, political and economic, not scientific or "safety".

      There are plenty of good reasons to fight Monsanto.  We don't need to make stupid shit up--nor does making stupid shit up, help us.

      In the end, reality always wins.

      by Lenny Flank on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 07:11:34 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  From a conceptual standpoint Tyson might be right. (14+ / 0-)

    But the folks pushing GMOs out of labs into the fields have every incentive to be hasty and few incentives to really get things right and ensure that what they claim is equivalent is really equivalent, what they say will not accidentally propagate to other plants indeed doesn't.

    The companies currently engaged in the GMO field are notorious for their lack of due diligence even compared to the poor due diligence that is endemic to most current corporations.

    Technological enthusiasm and overconfidence is not new.  Remember atomic energy was going to mean free electricity.

    The GMO sceptics are not as much questioning the science as the corruption of due diligence of the scientists by their employers.

    50 states, 210 media market, 435 Congressional Districts, 3080 counties, 192,480 precincts

    by TarheelDem on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 04:48:34 PM PDT

  •  Look folks, we can not feed, clothe and house all (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    SkepticalRaptor, Fonsia, aimeehs, Armando

    the  world's people without GMO which has been done for a significant part of the recent growth in human history.  Maybe truely elitist people can utilized a minimal amount of goods that have not been GMO, for the rest of us to survive we will and must utilize GMO.  

    •  We have been doing OK with non GMO herbicide plant (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      sturunner

      The problem with GMO's is we are using a genetically modified plant to use a chemical herbicide. Before, we used a natural plant with a chemical herbicide.

      This year people who are using standard seed and preplant herbicides are doing better than the GMO plants and using round up on them. GMOS are a double whammy

    •  Debunked (4+ / 0-)

      This has been debunked. We already know that organic farming done well can produce at least as well as farming with GMOs.

      This is because organic farming doesn't wear out the soil the way farming with pesticides and artificial fertilizers does.

      For example:

      A 2007 study compiling research from 293 different comparisons into a single study to assess the overall efficiency of the two agricultural systems has concluded that "organic methods could produce enough food on a global per capita basis to sustain the current human population, and potentially an even larger population, without increasing the agricultural land base."
      (From Wikipedia)

      If you research it I think you'll find that GMOS are not necessary for us to survive.

  •  It's been so great (14+ / 0-)

    to see this give a lot of liberals the courage to say this too. I've been psyched at the number of outlets that spread the "chill out" message.

    The most recent one I saw was this today: Neil deGrasse Tyson is right about GMOs: You should, in fact, chill out.

    But I still think the conclusion that "we're not as as bad as Republicans" is missing a lot of the realities. Sanders and Boxer nearly derailed the farm bill. Liberals tried to stop a food security bill based on lies about biotechnology. And VT legislators admitted to being in bed with the fringe.

    The organic shit does stink, I'm afraid.

    What will happen the next time the mob comes?--Neil deGrasse Tyson

    by mem from somerville on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 04:55:01 PM PDT

  •  "Americans eat it" (5+ / 0-)

    For some unfathomable reason, this argument does not impress Europeans. They remain unaccountably uninterested in eating the industrial muck of barbarians who still practice ritual human sacrifice.

    American Presidents: 43 men, 0 women. Ready for Hillary

    by atana on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 04:56:09 PM PDT

    •  Doesn't (0+ / 0-)

      impress me either. I believe it like I believe they can keep Ebola contained in the US. Bunk!

      •  Ebola? You are joking, no? (3+ / 0-)

        It's a hideous thing to joke about so I doubt it but it's an insane argument.

        Here's some numbers on Ebola, since it's discovery in 1976 less then 5,000 people have been infected with it and less the 3,000 people have died from it.  It's not an incredibly easy disease to catch. The two Americans who were transferred to our superior medical facilities are kept in excellent isolation where it will be easily contained. (The CDC has also had strains of the virus in their facility for years now and not a single case of Ebola has erupted in the US.)

        1.1 million people died of HIV/Aids related illness in 2013. In contrast AIDS was first medically identified in 1981 and 31 million people have died from HIV/AIDS related illnesses since.  It's also highly preventable, something many people did not realize when the cases were initially discovered.

        Measles on the other hand are very easy to catch, especially since so many people are choosing not to vaccinate. Infants too young to receive the vaccination and those with immune compromised bodies who cannot be vaccinated are catching this illness at alarming rates.  It's highly preventable and easily spread.  And unlike Ebola it caused over 122,000 deaths in 2012 alone.

        Charlie Crist for Florida Primary date: August 26, 2014, Election Date: November 4, 2014

        by aimeehs on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 11:45:47 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  um . . . . (5+ / 0-)

        USAMRIID and CDC have already kept Ebola contained in the US, for almost 40 years. They have had Ebola samples here since the 70's.

        Do try and keep up.

        In the end, reality always wins.

        by Lenny Flank on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 11:58:54 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Not importing GMO's from outside of (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      catwho

      Europe is the issue not GMO's themselves.  It's a work around the WTO agreement.  They tried it with non-GMO Ag before but it was against trade agreements.  It'll probably be against trade agreements in the case of GMO's from outside of the EU are concerned when all is said and done.  Europe does consume GMO's just not American GMO's.  It's a trade issue.

      They aren't somehow morally superior to Americans nor scientifically superior.  Science is a great equalizer, the majority of European countries are doing great things scientifically(especially with stem cells during our eight year ban on research during the Bush years) as we are to. When it comes to morality we all have our own foibles.

      Charlie Crist for Florida Primary date: August 26, 2014, Election Date: November 4, 2014

      by aimeehs on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 11:27:09 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I posted this to Facebook (22+ / 0-)

    My anti-GMO friends went absolutely apeshit.

    One of them asked me whether I thought food grown in a lab was the same as food "grown naturally." He about fell to pieces when I said (conditionally) yes.

    I used an analogy to explain further. If you take a highly corrosive and concentrated acid and combine it with a highly corrosive and concentrated base, it will make a benign salt and H20. That water is, aside from any impurities that might have been in the original compounds, as safe and as pure as water coming out of a spring. Should the fact that it arose from a reaction between two dangerous toxins make you scared to drink it?

    He said he wouldn't drink it. At that point, I knew there was no point in carrying on the discussion. Some people really have no interest in facts. Their beliefs are too cherished. And yes, it's as bad on the left as it is on the right.

    Almost everything you do will seem insignificant, but it is most important that you do it.

    by The Termite on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 05:00:22 PM PDT

  •  Keep Calm (12+ / 0-)

    Thalidomide is Safe.

    "Societies strain harder and harder to sustain the decadent opulence of the ruling class, even as it destroys the foundations of productivity and wealth." — Chris Hedges

    by Crider on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 05:00:31 PM PDT

  •  dishonest representation (8+ / 0-)

    "GMO by nature" - wtf is that? That's absurd to say it's the same as putting spider genes into a tomato.

    Dear NSA: I am only joking.

    by Shahryar on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 05:08:02 PM PDT

  •  I could never understand why the focus is (15+ / 0-)

    on the "GMO" part and not the reason for  it.  I do not really care if food was  genetically modified but I sure as hell do care if the reason was so that the plants could be sprayed with Round-Up.

  •  He's a Astro- physicist not a (7+ / 0-)

    Bio- physicist,Bio-Chemist so increase NaCl consumption when listening to a Astro- physicist on any subject other than  Astro- physics  ....

    I want 1 less Tiny Coffin, Why Don't You? Support The President's Gun Violence Plan.

    by JML9999 on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 05:18:37 PM PDT

  •  Neil deGrasse Tyson needs to chill out (23+ / 0-)

    About the legitimate concerns raised about GMO and the potentially irreversible effects of promoting them, particularly when used to promote resistance herbicides and pesticides used in increasingly greater quantity, polluting water, and also the corporatization of nature when GMO variants are Patented my Big Gg companies like Monsanto.

    And progressives need to chill out about science guy Neil deGrasse Tyson and stop attributing to him authority in scientific disciplines outside of astrophysics on the basis of celebrity.

  •  You know, I'm gonna go with what NdG the T (6+ / 0-)

    says here.

    It's an evidence-based situation. "There are no wild cows."

    That's true.
    A hundred years ago we still had a few on open range, but the demise of the Longhorn put paid to that -- in North America, at least.

    What we have are Holsteins, Jerseys or Guernseys in dairies, (rarely milking Shorthorns, in some places) and 'beef breeds' like the Angus, Whiteface, or Santa Gertrudis.  There are a few hardy souls still trying to raise all-purpose breeds (Charolais, for example). Now you can interbreed all these cattle after their kind -- and you'll get a calf, and likely it'll be fertile if you don't castrate it. You can even cross cattle with bison -- but those crosses aren't always fertile.

    There may well be wild Ankole cattle; I don't know. But like the Longhorns of old, the Ankole are naturally selected for their native range.

    Shorthorns, Angus, Guernseys and the rest? Selective breeding -- just like modern turkeys. Or pigs. Or chickens. Or strawberries, or tomatoes, or melons.

    Selective breeding's GMO -- and it goes all the way back before Mendel, and it applies to every crop from cattle to corn to cotton to coca bushes to coffee beans to cacao pods. You want to talk GMO? Talk about poppies. Roses. Sweet corn. Sugar beets. Yukon Gold potatoes. Orchids. Hemp plants -- and marijuana plants, while you're talking.

    Now what I do object to is the corporate tendency to craptacularify everything for the sake of the almighty dollar.

    LBJ, Van Cliburn, Ike, Wendy Davis, Lady Bird, Ann Richards, Barbara Jordan, Molly Ivins, Sully Sullenburger, Drew Brees: Texas is NO Bush League!

    by BlackSheep1 on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 05:27:10 PM PDT

  •  I got this on Facebook about GMOs (0+ / 0-)

    http://www.responsibletechnology.org/...

    I dunno who this group is or whether they are spouting facts.

    The only document of theirs I looked at was a summary of a 1990 study where rats eating GMO tomatoes got more stomach lesions.

    I usually don't rely on 34 year old studies for my opinions.

    “The answer must be, I think, that beauty and grace are performed whether or not we will or sense them. The least we can do is try to be there.” ― Annie Dillard, Pilgrim at Tinker Creek

    by 6412093 on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 05:27:24 PM PDT

  •  Funny funny stuff . (6+ / 0-)
    (and if you're going to bring up glyphosate, Roundup, then that's a different conversation, it's no longer about GMO's)

    Gerard Barry, a native of Ireland, spent more than 20 years in St. Louis working for Monsanto, the company that pioneered genetically engineered crops.

    He's listed as first inventor on some of Monsanto's most valuable . He found the gene that made crops immune to the weedkiller Roundup. That gene is now in soybeans, corn and cotton grown on hundreds of millions of acres.

    "please love deeply...openly and genuinely." A. M. H.

    by indycam on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 05:40:44 PM PDT

  •  GMO safety and the behaviour of Monsanto (19+ / 0-)

    are 2 separate issues.  It is possible that GMO foods are safe and that Monsanto abuses monopoly power.

    I do hope farmers finally get smart about the problems with monoculture and the benefits of crop rotation.  Plant diseases, pesticide resistant insects and herbicide resistant weeds are problems.  But farmers might be like the rest of American business, looking for the greatest short term profit, even if that endangers long term viability.

    I think GMO foods are as safe as foods created by plant breeding, but have no problem with labeling.  If GMO foods are safe, labeling does no harm.

    "The trouble with the world is that the stupid are cocksure and the intelligent are full of doubt." Bertrand Russell

    by Thutmose V on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 05:40:52 PM PDT

    •  Labeling does no harm... (7+ / 0-)

      ...except for being misleading.  I'm already getting annoyed with the "no gluten" labelling on things like milk or olive oil or apple sauce. It's preying on people's fears for marketing purposes, and driving some folks to paying waaaay more than necessary to get the gluten free wine to wash down their gluten free cheeses.

      I have a bag of potato chips on my counter that assures me it has no GMOs and no gluten. If I were concerned about the potential for GMOs or gluten in my potato chips that would be highly reassuring. However, it would also limit me from considering other brands of potato chips that did not offer me such reassurance. It might lead me to be more worried about the presence of GMOs or gluten in other products than I would otherwise be.

      “Texas is a so-called red state, but you’ve got 10 million Democrats here in Texas. And …, there are a whole lot of people here in Texas who need us, and who need us to fight for them.” President Obama

      by Catte Nappe on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 06:08:54 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I'd like to see that label. (8+ / 0-)

        A LOT of processed foods are cross-contaminated.

        I read every single ingredients list of every single thing I buy every time I shop (because manufacturers may change plants or lines from one month to another).

        You would be thoroughly impressed by how many potato chip products are made on the same equipment in the same facility as wheat, sesame, tree nuts, peanuts and milk.

        Tree nuts and peanuts will kill me in microscopic amounts. So folks who have to be 100% gluten free because of sensitivities or wheat allergies (I know Miss Laura is one) appreciate that big old label.

        I bought a bad of chips that had "no wheat, no glutens, no seeds, no tree nuts, no peanuts, no soy" splashed across the label. I tossed a few bags in my cart. That's a company that aims at people like me. We don't even eat chips very often (only when we go camping), but I wanted to make sure I stocked up before Costco sold out ...which they did.

        © grover


        So if you get hit by a bus tonight, would you be satisfied with how you spent today, your last day on earth? Live like tomorrow is never guaranteed, because it's not. -- Me.

        by grover on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 07:16:20 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  FYI (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Catte Nappe, grover

          A friend just shared a link that "pink peppercorns" are actually a berry from a tree related to cashews, so if you see that in an ingredient label, skip it.

          The Cake is a lie. In Pie there is Truth. ~ Fordmandalay

          by catwho on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 06:45:24 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Thanks. Good to know (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            catwho

            Not much a peppercorn fan. But I'll add it to the list of things to ask chefs to avoid.

            Generally, we don't eat out, but when we do, it's at restaurants of such quality that the chef knows his/her food ingredients incredibly well.

            But I obviously need to know what to avoid as well.

            So I appreciate the info.

            © grover


            So if you get hit by a bus tonight, would you be satisfied with how you spent today, your last day on earth? Live like tomorrow is never guaranteed, because it's not. -- Me.

            by grover on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 11:46:56 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

      •  Apparently you have never had a problem with (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        True North, mkor7

        Gluten intolerance. That's for the weak people to worry about, right?

    •  If there was less misinformation out there (0+ / 0-)

      the labeling would be a non-issue.

      Unfortunately, some folks have pushed a lot of misleading information about the safety of GMOs, making those folks who don't have the time and/or inclination to investigate all the information to be wary of GMOs' safety. And it's a question of whether it's necessary for public health (similar to whether widespread testing for many diseases without cause can possibly be a bad thing due to unnecessary stress and false positive tests).

      I'm not against labeling personally because I am not afraid of GMOs themselves, only how they are used by industrial agriculture. But I can understand the issues involved in only labeling GMOs and not other artificially selected foods that have the same basic issues of environmental damage and risks to public health.

    •  I have no problem with labelling (0+ / 0-)

      non-GMO products.

      I have a serious First Amendment issue with the government requiring the labelling of GMO products when the science says it is not harmful.

      Perhaps the science will change, but we can't be in the business of requiring labelling because of some persons' speculation.

      •  That's too limited a reason (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        mkor7, flowerfarmer
        I have a serious First Amendment issue with the government requiring the labelling of GMO products when the science says it is not harmful.
        We label all kinds of things in this country for all kinds of reasons, one being that we are allowed to be intelligent consumers.  

        I don't like to buy products with added sugar in them.  I need the labels to tell me about the ingredients so I can make this choice.  I don't like buying products from countries that use child-enslaving labor.  I need the labels for that.

        In the largest sense, as consumers, we demand the right to know who manufactured something, and we reserve the right to not buy products from manufacturers we don't like.

        You can't claim that only harmful things need to be labeled and then claim that the First Amendment is broken by any other type of product labeling.  There's no precedent for that.

        I'd like to avoid GMO food because I don't like eating Roundup, and I don't like the way these companies sue the pants off small independent farmers when some Big Ag crop contaminates their fields.  It's no different than refusing to buy GE products because I disagree with their labor practices.

        •  um . . . (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          T100R
          I'd like to avoid GMO food because I don't like eating Roundup
          . . . the Roundup gets sprayed on the non-GMO crops too.

          Indeed, it was being sprayed on non-GMO fields for 20 years before there even WAS any GMO crops invented. The Roundup-ready gene is itself taken from an ordinary weed that developed resistance during that time.

          So if you don't want to eat Roundup, your only choice is to not eat any plants at all.

          Enjoy your steaks.

          In the end, reality always wins.

          by Lenny Flank on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 02:58:20 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Nitpick (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            flowerfarmer

            There are a whole bunch of reasons to want to avoid GMO food.  Go ahead and nitpick a point if you want, but do't try to pretend that it negates my argument.

            (Just to add..I disagree with your assertion about Roundup, but I'm not going to fall into the trap of arguing minutiae with you.)

            •  it is not "my assertion". it is a simple fact. (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              T100R

              Roundup was introduced in the 1970's.

              The first GMO crops appeared in the US in the 1990's.

              The Roundup-Ready gene came from a weed that had already developed resistance to it.

              Roundup is still sprayed on non-GMO crops today.

              In fact, you yourself can go, today, to any Walmart Garden Center, buy Roundup, and spray it on anything your little heart desires.

              In the end, reality always wins.

              by Lenny Flank on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 04:41:05 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Keep missing the point, Lenny (0+ / 0-)

                The point being that there are a lot of reasons to want to avoid GMO foods, and that labeling in this country has to do with much more than simple health issues.  I understand that if you can't keep wrangling the discussion back to one or two very specific points , then you don't have a sensible argument.

                So if you'd like to discuss the actual point of my comment, I'd be glad to do that, but I'm not willing to let you drive the discussion into "The History of Roundup", sorry.

  •  Because it's about personal branding (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    sturunner, Notreadytobenice

    not about reason.

    In laboratory settings, there's no evident difference between liberals and conservatives in their propensity to believe what they want, evidence be damned. In one experiment, Yale law professor Dan Kahan showed you could get liberals to start doubting global warming (and conservatives to begin accepting it) by making clear that any solution would require geoengineering.

    Light is seen through a small hole.

    by houyhnhnm on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 05:46:16 PM PDT

  •  I love watching Cosmos: A Space-Time Odyssey. (2+ / 0-)

    I continue to watch the episodes over and over. I'm chilled out when I watch them, and about most GMOs.


    I cast a shadow, therefore, I am. You stand on my shadow, therefore, you are.

    by glb3 on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 05:55:31 PM PDT

  •  Said it before, I'll say it again. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Gooserock

    Neil deGrasse Tyson is not your boyfriend.

    Question is, do we respect him enough to overlook a great science communicator of deviations from whatever makes up our personal orthodoxy?  From where I stand, we don't have enough Black men in science, let alone astrophysics, to be cliquey.

    •  Science Isn't a Democracy Nor Fair. (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      mconvente, rduran, kansaster

      We need honest work and advocacy. I've not seen anything attacking his science.

      Once he's speaking in public on matters he can't publish on, he's the same as you and me. One more jerk with an opinion he may not be "even wrong" on.

      And one vote, and all the money global ownership will back him with to promote their interests.

      We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

      by Gooserock on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 06:22:14 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Jerks with opinions (0+ / 0-)

        work for running up the score. After all, at least some of them have to be right.

      •  I disagree to an extent (0+ / 0-)

        We don't have to revere Tyson as some kind of expert on GMOs and any non-scientist as unable to reach similarly logical conclusions based on evidence. But I think he is better than the average person at reading and synthesizing large amounts of evidence on a topic, and may have had more training in the sciences in general than the average non-scientist. I also think he is less likely to make broad conclusions based on a small number of results due to experience in his own field.

        Just like I'd expect a lawyer to generally have a better grasp than the average person in how to read and interpret some aspect of corporate law even if they are an expert in family law (they've been to law school after all and understand some basic aspects of interpreting and reading law). A non-lawyer could be better at it, but usually not.

        •  No, we don't (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          duhban, Fonsia

          But as an investigator of pseudoscience, he is by virtue of his training and the resources he has available to pursue the interest.  That nets him a considerable amount of credibility, and where it concerns GMO criticism it shouldn't take much for a guy with a radio show, a travel budget, staff, and tons of well placed friends to ferret out the real dope.

          •  His sin was (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            mkor7

            The cherries he failed to pick, which is usually the case with cherry picking.

            And often the problem with meta-analysis that pools generalized conclusions such as we have here.

            Is anything fundamentally wrong with the use of genetic engineering as a technique?

            No, it is a tool.

            Are people dropping like flies from eating GMO soybeans?

            No, it is non-toxic for most people and a good source of protein.

            Are we fucking with nature and killing-off bee colonies when we shift to large scale farming of GMOs engineered for high herbicide and pesticide tolerance and then over spraying crops with chemicals to get artificially high (i.e., unnatural) yields, which then have the effect of reducing biodiversity in a delicately balanced ecosystem system and polluting land?

            An increasing amount of research that Tyson apparently missed or excluded suggests this is exactly the case and so his little meta research project is a fail.

            And his remarks to deflect criticism are somewhat anti-scientific.

            I hope he will be more careful in the future.

  •  In spite of your user name (0+ / 0-)

    I question your math.

  •  Evidence paid for by Big Ag. thats special (2+ / 0-)

    .................expect us......................... FDR 9-23-33, "If we cannot do this one way, we will do it another way. But do it we will.

    by Roger Fox on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 06:31:20 PM PDT

  •  You canèt be selctive about... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    T100R, Andrew F Cockburn

    what science you are going to believe. This is important - Monsanto is still an evil corporation but the science says that GMO crops aren't the reason why. We still deserve labels to let us know what we're buying but frankly I'm happy to read GMO stuff is okay.

    "We are but a moment's sunlight fading in the grass" The Youngbloods

    by karlpk on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 06:33:50 PM PDT

  •  obviously he is paid by Monsanto and is (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mconvente, T100R

    part of the global corporate conspiracy . . .

    (snicker)  (giggle)

    In the end, reality always wins.

    by Lenny Flank on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 06:48:56 PM PDT

  •  Too many people have bought into greenwashing (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    laurak, Brian A, HudsonValleyMark, mkor7

    Hook, line and sinker. In order for it to work, there has to be an evil villain.

    As you say, organic isn't necessarily healthier. Organic chicken tests positive for salmonella more frequently than regular chicken. You won't ever find me buying organic chicken, unless it's from my good friend who raises them by hand herself.

    My main concern with GMOs is the link there might be between them and the explosion of food allergies since the late 90s or so. These seem to be largely limited to Americans. I don't buy the hygiene hypothesis. There is no proof for it.

    As early as 1992, FDA was told that switching up plant proteins could cause problems with food allergies. http://www.fda.gov/...

    I've never been satisfied with its ultimate conclusion that there is no proof that a GMO food has caused a  food allergy. First of all, we don't know that. Strict allergen labeling is relatively new, and still doesn't have complete compliance. Second, it's often hard to determine what causes an allergic reaction. Third, FDA says  there is no proof of allergic reactions. But as the report I linked to indicates, tomatoes may be crossed with peanuts. Peanuts may be a mild allergen,but  the repeated assault on the autoimmune system to peanut proteins via tomatoes can escalate a mild allergy to a life-threatening one.

    The problem is, FDA's position is that good companies have to prove foods are safe. Food companies say FDA is required to tell them they're not.  This is in the FDA record, clear as day.

    So both are pointing at each other. And no one is paying attention to the consumer.

    Science is great. But I'm not naive enough to think that all the necessary science has been done AND all results reported to FDA.

    Tobacco knew a lot more than it reported.

    I roll my eyes at the hair-on-fire anti-GMO crowd.

    But I wonder if the "everything is fine" folks are being a bit naive.

    Generally, I buy a few specific organic products, hoping to avoid pesticides not easily washed off more than I worry about GMOs.  And I buy organic when it's more healthful for the environment or us (like milk).

    But my trust of science isn't so strong that I forget that all of this is set in the twin contexts of capitalism and politics.

    © grover


    So if you get hit by a bus tonight, would you be satisfied with how you spent today, your last day on earth? Live like tomorrow is never guaranteed, because it's not. -- Me.

    by grover on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 06:59:22 PM PDT

    •  I loves me some nuance (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      grover

      I don't know if the particular concern about GMOs and food allergies is warranted. But it would be great if we could get past "who are we against?" to "what would be good policy?"

      "Democracy is a political system for people who are not sure they are right." —E. E. Schattschneider

      by HudsonValleyMark on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 06:22:32 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  That's it. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        serendipityisabitch, T100R

        Calling half the population morons for trusting Monsanto and the other half anti-science idiots really fails to persuade me either way.

        I simply don't have a lot of trust in FDA which, like USDA, is a revolving door agency with Big Food. There are some food companies I think are ok. Some, I think are pretty despicable. Many are a little of both.

        And the ones that seem to be ok on food issues seem to  often be reactionary on social issues.

        The thing is, 25% of Americans, on average,  are dealing  with food scarcity. Without GMOs, food prices would escalate rapidly.

        It's a luxury to be outraged about the type of potatoes we have on our grocery shelves.

        I wish a few more people here were this furious and activated about hungry people in our towns, on our street, in our universities (college students often skip meals because they can't afford to eat), among our veterans. We could really use the help out there.

        I know I'm a bit off topic here, but since everyone is discussing labeling, I figure, why not?

        Limiting GMO food will affect the least among us the most.  This isn't about Africa. This is about Bakersfield.

        As you say, Mark, we need smart policy.

        © grover


        So if you get hit by a bus tonight, would you be satisfied with how you spent today, your last day on earth? Live like tomorrow is never guaranteed, because it's not. -- Me.

        by grover on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 11:35:40 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  it is humorous (though a little sad) to see (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mem from somerville, T100R, Fonsia, emelyn

    so many DKosers making the very same exact arguments almost word for word against Tyson that the creationists and the global warming deniers do . . . .

    (snicker)

    In the end, reality always wins.

    by Lenny Flank on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 07:04:05 PM PDT

  •  Love Neil--really do, but, I certainly will not (12+ / 0-)

    be silenced by him or anyone else. I have a choice goddamnit! That's the point of living in a democracy or a democratic republic is that we are allowed certain freedoms and that includes the right to choose what kind of substances we ingest regardless of what he thinks of them.

    Jeesuz kEErist is it really that goddamn hard to get it?

    But you know people used to tell us about the health benefits of tobacco consumption too--AND those were medical doctors and not PhDs.


    It is my choice whether or not to consume alcohol, whether or not to use tobacco, whether or not to put prescription drugs into my body. It is my choice how much or if any processed sugars to consume, whether or not I want to eat grains or their products, or to eat meat or not, or whether or not I use dryer sheets or spray air freshners, or not.

    I get to make those choices based on how I perceive what is good for me, or what bad things I believe or know my body can handle.

    I have learned too many times not to count on what other people claim is safe. Especially not when there is so much money bankrolling their promotion.

    And-further more,

    We have a perfectly good ecosystem on this planet. It seems a shame to me that we insist on fucking it up beyond all recognition when GMOs would be better suited for terraforming and space stations. Experiment out there somewhere.

    But don't fix what isn't broken.

    And I can like, and admire Neil DeGrasse Tyson, but I am not required to agree with him on every little thing. My admiration for his other work is in no way dependent upon being in total "creedal" agreement with him at all.

    I am sure that there are other things that we would disagree on or about and yet I would still be grateful for all of his work to bring science back into the public eye in a way that is accessible and entertaining and thought provoking.

    Chimeric DNA that is spliced in a petri dish between two different kingdoms is not the same as plant breeding (within one kingdom), just so we are clear. So don't bother trying to make it sound like that Monk Mendel was doing this back at the monastery, no one will fall for that crap.

    "It were a thousand times better for the land if all Witches, but especially the blessing Witch, might suffer death." qtd by Ehrenreich & English. For Her Own Good, Two Centuries of Expert's Advice to Women pp 40

    by GreenMother on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 07:05:12 PM PDT

    •  you really don't (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Fonsia, rduran

      there's not a single thing in common consumption across the planet that hasn't been shaped by the hand of man.

      Der Weg ist das Ziel

      by duhban on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 08:01:09 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  HOLY OVERBLOWN OUTRAGE, BATMAN! (4+ / 0-)

      Who the fuck told you you have to agree with Tyson or anyone else?

      Chimeric DNA that is spliced in a petri dish between two different kingdoms is not the same as plant breeding (within one kingdom), just so we are clear.
      What really grates about this isn't just that it's wrong - it's that it's wrongness presented with such arrogance.

      While not in a petrie dish - I doubt you really mean that nature has to use a petrie dish for your argument - nature does indeed see the transfer of genetic material between different kingdoms:

      http://www.newscientist.com/...

      http://www.geneticliteracyproject.org/...

      •  Your justifications are weak for this argument. (3+ / 0-)

        Overblown Outrage? No, remembering that I have rights, and that includes the right to know when I am being exposed to substances I don't want in my body, and being able to choose not to ingest them under any circumstances.

        The only arrogance here is the one where you think it's okay to force or trick others into accepting your viewpoint.

        And Nature/Evolution over millions of years sharing DNA is not the same as some yokel with a petri-dish. Natural Selection, wherein advantageous organisms survived and those who did not receive advantages died.

        I am not in the mood to have YOU or any other Hairless Ape determine (in your minds) Who you think that is going to be, any more than I would let some Psychic Reader make such a guess.

        This science is in it's infancy and I did not consent to be a guinea pig. Nothing Outrageous on my end for balking about that.

        You got some nerve strutting around like the cock of the walk, pretending like Science never fucks up.

        I am an American Citizen and I have Rights, and one of those is not to be a guinea pig. If you think otherwise , that is a bigger reflection on your lack of scientific and medical ethics, than it is on me in any capacity.

        "It were a thousand times better for the land if all Witches, but especially the blessing Witch, might suffer death." qtd by Ehrenreich & English. For Her Own Good, Two Centuries of Expert's Advice to Women pp 40

        by GreenMother on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 04:25:46 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  You should be seeking labelling (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Little

          of anti-GMO products so that your choice is informed.

          Not forced speech that is not supported by the science.

        •  asdf (0+ / 0-)

          "The only arrogance here is the one where you think it's okay to force or trick others into accepting your viewpoint."

          Yeah that's wrong, dishonest, offensive, and fuck you.

          "And Nature/Evolution over millions of years sharing DNA is not the same as some yokel with a petri-dish. Natural Selection, wherein advantageous organisms survived and those who did not receive advantages died."

          It's not the same! It's not exactly the same - which makes it evil! Why? Because I say so! Just like vaccines! Why! BECAUSE IT'S UNNATURAL AND AGAINST THE ORDER OF MILLIONS OF YEARS OF DERP DERPLE!

          "You got some nerve strutting around like the cock of the walk, pretending like Science never fucks up."

          Yeah that's wrong, dishonest, offensive, and fuck you.

          "I am an American Citizen and I have Rights, and one of those is not to be a guinea pig. If you think otherwise , that is a bigger reflection on your lack of scientific and medical ethics, than it is on me in any capacity."

          What does being an American citizen have to do with it?

          "I am an American Citizen and I have Rights, and one of those is not to be a guinea pig. If you think otherwise , that is a bigger reflection on your lack of scientific and medical ethics, than it is on me in any capacity."

          Nobody said you didn't. Derp.

          "I am an American Citizen and I have Rights, and one of those is not to be a guinea pig. If you think otherwise , that is a bigger reflection on your lack of scientific and medical ethics, than it is on me in any capacity."

          I don't. But please keep yelling that someone is forcing you to listen to, agree with stuff.

          •  It's offensive and fuck me? (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Clues, RiveroftheWest

            Ha ha, In your dreams buddy.

            The fight to get labeling all this time, says more about the dishonesty of the industry behind GMOs than anything else.

            There is nothing to be afraid of, so lets hide our product in your food and make you guess. Lets try and weaken organic labeling so we can slip our crap in there too.

            No thanks.

            Every body gets a choice. Even people like you. You are free to eat all the GMO crap you want. I should be free to just say no, just like I do to tobacco.

            "It were a thousand times better for the land if all Witches, but especially the blessing Witch, might suffer death." qtd by Ehrenreich & English. For Her Own Good, Two Centuries of Expert's Advice to Women pp 40

            by GreenMother on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 11:51:44 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

      •  HOLY OVERBLOWN OUTRAGE INDEED! (0+ / 0-)

        People are refusing to eat what I insist they must eat!  Dammit!  People have no right to refuse things I want them to eat. ESPECIALLY WHEN I INSIST IT IN ALL CAPS!!!!!

        That's the argument in a nutshell really.

        Why do so many people insist that we all must stop avoiding GMO food?  Why is it any of their fucking business?  How does it harm them if some people want to avoid GMO food?

        Talk about overblown outrage, jeebus krispies, what's next?  Is everyone going to get their shorts in a knot over the new FDA added sugar labeling?  We've been eating sugar for centuries!  How dare someone try to avoid eating that?

        •  I am unaware of anyone holding a gun to your head (0+ / 0-)

          and demanding that you eat GMO food or else . . . . . . . .

          You are entirely free to never eat anything GMO ever again ever ever ever--and nobody will give a shit.  (shrug)

          In the end, reality always wins.

          by Lenny Flank on Wed Aug 06, 2014 at 02:37:22 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  actually, you share about 60% of your DNA with (6+ / 0-)

      a petunia.

      Seriously.

      No joke.

      In the end, reality always wins.

      by Lenny Flank on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 09:04:01 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Over Millions of years. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        c0wfunk

        and Pollinators Co-Evolved with their plants. So its all good. It will make absolutely no difference whatsoever, to Pollinators what we do to their plant-hosts. (Snark)

        "It were a thousand times better for the land if all Witches, but especially the blessing Witch, might suffer death." qtd by Ehrenreich & English. For Her Own Good, Two Centuries of Expert's Advice to Women pp 40

        by GreenMother on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 04:13:59 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Make your choices (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Little

      But don't impose them on others without sound scientific bases.

  •  We have an anti-science crowd on the left too (8+ / 0-)

    not as universally anti-science as the right, and they tend to be single issue types (some anti-vax folks are on the left, anti-"Western medicine", etc.). But we have them on the left too.

    We also have a lot of Nimby folks across the political spectrum (look at the "environmentalist" who oppose offshore wind when it's near there summer homes) including the left.

    -1.63/ -1.49 "Speaking truth to power" (with snark of course)! Follow on Twitter @dopper0189

    by dopper0189 on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 07:31:01 PM PDT

    •  there is overlap, though (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Fonsia, dopper0189, Brian A, T100R

      Some of the people who post fringe anti-GMO "science" here are also posting anti-vaxx "science" in other diaries.  We also have a few "cellphones cause brain cancer" nutters here at DKos--and at least one actual anti-evolution creationist.

      Sadly, while DKos may be "reality-based", too many of its members are not.

      In the end, reality always wins.

      by Lenny Flank on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 09:05:49 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  TRANSGENICS happens in nature, too. (8+ / 0-)

    I've gotten beat up all week because I posted Tyson's earlier video. Straight up good scince. Oy.

    And just on the issue of "Yeah but GMOs = science fiction ebola in my chitos! Not like cross-breeding at all!" fuckery - trangenics happens in nature too. This isn't just about cross-breeding, nature does weirder stuff than that.

  •  Oh Neil, Neil, you realize how this will be used (5+ / 0-)

    GMO's aren't directly dangerous to health, but the arguments for how they are going to save the world are like the arguments that modern coal burning plants could be clean. Just as the coal plants that are actually proposed are never modern clean coal plants, the GMO's coming to the market are just encouraging monocultures, food insecurity, monopolies and consumption of nutritionally  inferior products like potato snacks, corn syrup drinks and modified soy glop. Also, they are shortening the useful life of Roundup as roundup resistant weeds evolve and roundup resistant crops become weeds themselves and as a gardener I find this very irritating. GMO crops introduced in the third world have proven less productive than expected and farmers in India have been driven out of business and even to suicide by the debt that they incur trying to grow them.

    Tyson brings up some good lines of attack as he elaborates, but I have already seen other pundits undermine attacks on Monsanto as being motivated by anti-capitalist envy. Considering that labeling GMO's would help people realize how monopolized our food production system is, that would be worth something.

    As for his argument against limiting patents, patents never go on forever because even capitalists realize that they  stifle the free market and technological progress. In fact, he should know how much scientific work is done by graduate students, to the point that limiting the return on industrial science wouldn't put that much of a limitation on scientific research at all, especially if we were funding education the way we should. If GMO's were being created willy nilly in labs by graduate students, I wouldn't have a problem.

    Cracker(krăk´ẽr ) Someone, usually but not exclusively white, whose world view is primarily formed by consensual validation as opposed to observed fact, hence “cracker” for someone brittle, insubstantial and lacking in nutritive value.

    by outis2 on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 08:23:57 PM PDT

  •  Wow, just wow. (9+ / 0-)

    Not sure why, but some Dkos diarists are really going all in on GMO this year, trying to equate opposition to a terribly flawed agricultural paradigm to opposition to global warming or even, cough, cough, vaccines.

    This is bullshit.  Plain and simple, and someone, or some entity is behind this, because it is unrelenting and coordinated.

    When I have more time, I will expose all this trite, unsupported and truly dangerous thinking around GMOs, but for now, let's be clear:

    GMOs are fundamentally different than plant breeding and selection.  They are proprietary products of private corporations, and as such, you can't collect the seeds, and if they blow onto your property and grow, you are in violation of the law.  We are talking about plants here, nature really, so the ability to control and "own" it is absurd from the beginning.

    In most cases, GMO plants provide "protection" for a particular plant against herbicides that kill everything around it.  Ergo, the premise of most GMOs is to eradicate nature in order to allow the one "corporate owned" plant to survive.  Meanwhile, the soil web, the bacteria, the fungii, the very basis of life, is dispensed with as an inconvenient truth.

    Look, you can bring in an astro-physicist with a big ego.  You can tell us, "don't worry"  Monsanto has our best interests in mind.  You can spread the corporate propaganda about how their proprietary products deserve protection because only "they" can feed the world.  But, in the end, you can't run from the truth:  our farms are becoming industrial production sites, our small cities are dying, our food is lacking in nutrition and minerals, our health as a nation is in steep decline, and our resilience around crop health and seed saving is in a free-fall.

    Are GMOs really going to reverse this trend?  No, they aren't.  Because in the end, they are the apotheosis of the corporate farming model.  The one that says we should all give up and bow down to the Powers that Be, the ones that know what is best for us.  

    Far from being in the same camp as the Climate Deniers or Vaccine Deniers, people who oppose GMOs realize they are being peddled a bill of corporate goods that work against family farms, work against land stewardship, and work against human health.  

    It's not science vs anti-science when it comes to GMOs:  it's the corporate smear vs the people's right to have real food, a healthy eco-system and a fair food system.

    I know what side I'm on.  Dkos.... I am no longer sure what this site stands for.

    Truly sad to see this development.

    Industrial food production in America ruins our health, our environment and consumes more fossil fuel than any segment of our economy.

    by Mi Corazon on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 08:29:07 PM PDT

    •  obviously we are all paid by Monsanto and (6+ / 0-)

      are part of the vast global conspiracy. Oh, and I'm also part of the vaccines and global-warming conspiracy, and am paid by Pfizer, Duke Energy, and Greenpeace. Heck, I can't even remember how many corporate conspiracies I get paid by.

      (snicker)

      The paranoid dumbfuckery here makes my head hurt.

      This is bullshit.  Plain and simple, and someone, or some entity is behind this, because it is unrelenting and coordinated.
      PS--if you have an accusation to make, make it, so we can let the admins do their thing for your unsubstantiated and idiotic accusation of paid shilling and coordinated trolling. You can join your fellow tinfoil-hat CTers who made similar idiotic accusations in the bojo room.

      I'm SOOOOOOOOOOOOO fucking tired of seeing this stupid-ass shit in every goddamn diary every goddamn day.

      In the end, reality always wins.

      by Lenny Flank on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 09:10:54 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Stop with the condesention (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        flowerfarmer

        Mi Corazon never said you were "all paid by Monsanto and are part of the vast global conspiracy."
        What part of this are you ok with?

        In most cases, GMO plants provide "protection" for a particular plant against herbicides that kill everything around it.  Ergo, the premise of most GMOs is to eradicate nature in order to allow the one "corporate owned" plant to survive.  Meanwhile, the soil web, the bacteria, the fungii, the very basis of life, is dispensed with as an inconvenient truth.

        "When I see I am nothing, that is wisdom. When I see I am everything, that is love. My life is a movement between these two." - Nisargadatta Maharaj.

        by mkor7 on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 12:32:07 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  um, ypou forgot the the part where (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          T100R
          In most cases, GMO plants provide "protection" for a particular plant against herbicides that kill everything around it.  Ergo, the premise of most GMOs is to eradicate nature in order to allow the one "corporate owned" plant to survive.  Meanwhile, the soil web, the bacteria, the fungii, the very basis of life, is dispensed with as an inconvenient truth.
          all of those things happen with non-GMO crops too, since the very same pesticides are also sprayed on non-GMO crops, had been for 20 years before any GMO crops even appeared, and will be even if we ban GMOs tomorrow.

          'By the way, that Roundup-resistant gene itself came from a weed that had already developed resistance to Roundup on its own, during the 20 years the herbicide was being sprayed on non-GMO crops.

          If your gripe is with the pesticides, then ban the pesticides.  Banning GMOs won't help, since those same pesticides are also sprayed on the non-GMOs.

          In the end, reality always wins.

          by Lenny Flank on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 01:01:50 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  You didn't address this (0+ / 0-)
            the premise of most GMOs is to eradicate nature in order to allow the one "corporate owned" plant to survive.
            Use of GMOs will eventually make it difficult to not use pesticides. That's the whole point.

            "When I see I am nothing, that is wisdom. When I see I am everything, that is love. My life is a movement between these two." - Nisargadatta Maharaj.

            by mkor7 on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 01:47:42 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  I did address it (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              T100R

              Pesticides are also used on non-GMO crops, where they have exactly the same effects. The presence or absence of GMOs is irrelevant.

              PS--it's already difficult to not use pesticides.  That's why everyone does. Even organic farmers.

              In the end, reality always wins.

              by Lenny Flank on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 01:52:51 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Showing your true colors Lenny (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                flowerfarmer

                Organic farmers using artificially concocted chemical pesticides?
                By definition they wouldn't be organic farmers.

                "When I see I am nothing, that is wisdom. When I see I am everything, that is love. My life is a movement between these two." - Nisargadatta Maharaj.

                by mkor7 on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 04:53:14 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  too funny, since "organic" farms are allowed to (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  T100R

                  use Bt pesticide---the very same Bt that so many of those here spew a cow about.

                  Indeed, there are over 1000 different pesticides that are OK'd for use by "organic farms".

                  PS--I don't recall using the words "artificially concocted".  Thanks for adding that dishonest strawman.

                  What I said was, quote:

                  it's already difficult to not use pesticides.  That's why everyone does. Even organic farmers.
                  And that is entirely true. Unless you want to argue that organic farmers DO NOT use pesticides . . . . ?

                  In the end, reality always wins.

                  by Lenny Flank on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 05:08:56 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  Most of us farming less than 20 acres do not (2+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    indycam, mkor7

                    Every organic farmer i personally know does not use pesticide.
                    These are not back yard gardeners that i am sure you would have some dismissive insult for.

                    It is unnecessary to use pesticide if there is crop diversity, rotation and soil supported with compost and manure or organic fertilizer..

                    There are many non-toxic barrier applications that effectively deal with overabundance of insects.

                    Any farmer who uses monoculture as a system is creating problems in the environment that do not exist in smaller diverse plantings.

                    'How like fish we are: ready, nay, eager, to seize upon whatever new thing.......And how we rue our haste, finding the gilded morsel to contain a hook". ALDO LEOPOLD - A Sand County Almanac.............................. UID: 111992 Joined: Nov 17, 2006

                    by flowerfarmer on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 06:01:00 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

    •  Climate Deniers (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      T100R, mdetrano

      could write your comment.

      I'm not saying you are wrong, but that they could write the same comment.

      What does the science say?

      Are you saying Tyson has the science wrong?

    •  It's unrelenting and coordinated (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      serendipityisabitch, T100R

      because some of us accept science.  

      I accept science, the scientific process, and I respect the peer review system.

      I've worked in science labs with some great minds.  I've chunked at plant DNA and plant genomes myself.  

      I grow my own organic herbs in the backyard without pesticides because I am lazy, not because I am afraid of the chemicals.  (Chemicals cost money!)

      Goodness, I wish I got paid by some big companies to "shill" for them.  I have student loans to pay off.

      But no, I fight against misinformation because I love science and progress and I accept only evidence, not beliefs.

      The Cake is a lie. In Pie there is Truth. ~ Fordmandalay

      by catwho on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 06:50:28 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Tyson's central point is pretty weak (3+ / 0-)

    and, to be clear, I don't oppose GMO.

    We have systematically genetically modified all the foods, the vegetables and animals that we have eaten ever since we cultivated them. It's called artificial selection.
    There are many differences between artificial selection and direct genetic manipulation. One difference that stands out to me is the rate of change. Breeders still work within relatively natural parameters of biological reproduction.

    The irony here is that there is a strain of climate change denial, which also ignores the radical difference in rates brought on by man-made climate change.

    So, I would actually lump Tyson's comments in with the climate denialists in failing to draw a very simple, scientific distinction.

    But, like I said, I'm not aware of much evidence that GMO crops are human health risks. They tend to go hand-in-hand with industrial agriculture, monocropping, etc.

    •  actually, there has been no change (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      T100R, emelyn, unclejohn

      All of the GMO genes are naturally-occurring, and have been around for lengths of time ranging into the billions of years. Monsanto didn't make ANY of them. All they did is take an already-existing gene from one organism and put it into another.

      So whatever effect the gene would have, it has already been having for millions of years.

      In the end, reality always wins.

      by Lenny Flank on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 10:49:22 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Right (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      c0wfunk, mkor7

      They're about as bad as the other corporate agriculture trends. Monocrop. Kill off anything else that settles on the land. Fertilize by the gas-truck load. And hope you sell out before the house of cards falls.

      Are they worse? Probably only in the sense it makes it easier to do all that other stuff.

    •  Your comment (0+ / 0-)

      seems wrong to me, but I am no scieintist. This paragraph in particular:

      "There are many differences between artificial selection and direct genetic manipulation. One difference that stands out to me is the rate of change. Breeders still work within relatively natural parameters of biological reproduction."

      What is the basis of that statement?
      "

      •  "relatively natural" (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        serendipityisabitch

        Sounds pretty foggy, for sure. I suppose it stands to reason that if genetic engineering in the lab yields a desired result more quickly than traditional GE through cross-breeding, the "parameters" of breeding are more "relatively natural." But that use of "natural" seems, at most, rhetorically useful.

        "Democracy is a political system for people who are not sure they are right." —E. E. Schattschneider

        by HudsonValleyMark on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 06:34:13 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  NdGT has been saying this for a while (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Fonsia

    Politics is like driving. To go backward put it in R. To go forward put it in D.
    Drop by The Grieving Room on Monday nights to talk about grief.

    by TrueBlueMajority on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 08:47:53 PM PDT

  •  There is a fundamental difference between breeding (9+ / 0-)

    and selecting and direct gene manipulation.  I challenge anyone to give even one example where the two methods produce identical results.

    I did some genetic engineering in 1970 at Harvard with Jon Beckwith.  The techniques were based on using E coli and lamba phage DNA to modify the bacteria's genome so genes for desired  protein synthesis could be artificially controlled through the lambda DNA.  The bugs became little protein factories.  There is no way this could be achieved by classical genetic manipulation.  They are not the same.

    Tyson is in over his head.

    An idea is not responsible for who happens to be carrying it at the moment. It stands or falls on its own merits.

    by don mikulecky on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 08:49:34 PM PDT

    •  You're Sort Of Making The Opposite Point (4+ / 0-)
      I did some genetic engineering in 1970 at Harvard with Jon Beckwith. ..... There is no way this could be achieved by classical genetic manipulation.
      Assuming you have the date right, that was pretty much "classical genetic manipulation" which people had been doing with the lac operon through the 1950s and 1960s with little more than Petri plates, toothpicks, and some common reagents.

      Remember, Ham Smith did not isolate the first Type 2 restriction enzyme until 1970, and he shared the Nobel prize for that.

      Men are so necessarily mad, that not to be mad would amount to another form of madness. -Pascal

      by bernardpliers on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 09:49:07 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  we are not communicating (0+ / 0-)

        I meant by crossing and selecting not by manipulating DNA.  To an old guy like me you are not describing anything "classic".

        You quoted out of context....go back to where I make the distinction:

        There is a fundamental difference between breeding
        and selecting and direct gene manipulation.

        An idea is not responsible for who happens to be carrying it at the moment. It stands or falls on its own merits.

        by don mikulecky on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 03:26:02 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  OK here's one: (5+ / 0-)
       I challenge anyone to give even one example where the two methods produce identical results.
      Right now, the plain ole ordinary banana is threatened with extinction by two fungus diseases called Panama Disease TR4 and Sigatoka.

      Some of the wild ancestors of the banana have genes that are resistant to those diseases.  Biologists are trying to crossbreed the existing edible banana with the inedible wild ancestors, to introduce those genes. BUT since bananas are sterile and cannot breed, at all, that process takes decades. So scientists in Uganda are working to use GMO techniques to remove the genes from the wild ancestors and insert them into the edible banana to give them disease resistance.

      The results in both cases are absolutely totally one-thousand percent identical--the gene for fungus resistance ends up in the edible banana.

      But one process takes decades and may happen too late to save the banana, while the other process takes just a short time and can happen quickly enough to save the bananas.

      Guess which one the anti-science fringers oppose . . . . . ?

      In the end, reality always wins.

      by Lenny Flank on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 10:54:12 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  can this be done without introducing other foreign (0+ / 0-)

        DNA?  I suspect not.

        If so this is NOT a true statement:

        The results in both cases are absolutely totally one-thousand percent identical--the gene for fungus resistance ends up in the edible banana.

        An idea is not responsible for who happens to be carrying it at the moment. It stands or falls on its own merits.

        by don mikulecky on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 03:33:26 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  it can with GMO (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          serendipityisabitch

          That will move only the selected gene.

          It can't with breeding--there's no way then to control which genes get passed over and which do not. If other genes are passed on, they would then need to be selectively bred out--which would require even more time.

          But at the end of that process, you end up with the same thing: the current banana plant with the new resistance genes.

          •  With breeding NO foreign DNA is involved (0+ / 0-)

            most gene manipulations I am familiar with use foreign DNA as markers and other aids.

            When we did our work we also spliced in antibiotic resistance to make it easy to harvest out mutants.  That was in E. coli.  

            An idea is not responsible for who happens to be carrying it at the moment. It stands or falls on its own merits.

            by don mikulecky on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 06:30:40 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  ps--it's not "foreign" DNA. It's the same banana (0+ / 0-)

          The edible banana is a sterile hybrid (a triploid) of two wild species of inedible banana.

          So it's taking a gene out of one banana and moving it into an other banana.

          •  I've been away from this work for a long time. (0+ / 0-)

            If it is now possible to move a single gene I am impressed.  When we did it it had other DNA attached and this was not native to the species being implanted with the new material.

            An idea is not responsible for who happens to be carrying it at the moment. It stands or falls on its own merits.

            by don mikulecky on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 06:22:14 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

    •  And Flood Tolerant Rice (6+ / 0-)

      Rice plants drown if they are submerged for several days and this can cause mass crop failure.  But there was one variety that could survive underwater for a week.

      http://www.gmanetwork.com/...

      I believe they were able to move the rice gene for flood resistance into new strains using genetic makers and most of  the tools commonly used for genetic engineering, but the gene was added by traditional breeding.

      I saw one of the researchers talk, and they said how nice it was to do a presentation in the US where no additional police security was needed to do a talk on plant breeding.  

      Men are so necessarily mad, that not to be mad would amount to another form of madness. -Pascal

      by bernardpliers on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 11:11:58 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Again how is it done? If the desired gene is (0+ / 0-)

        attached to foreign DNA it is not at all like cross breeding.

        An idea is not responsible for who happens to be carrying it at the moment. It stands or falls on its own merits.

        by don mikulecky on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 03:35:48 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  You Gotta Either Give A Shit OR Don't Give A Shit (0+ / 0-)

          If you give a shit, read up on this stuff.  If you don't give a shit, that's fine, but don't pretend to give a shit.

          Here's a link

          http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/...

          You're welcome.  

          Men are so necessarily mad, that not to be mad would amount to another form of madness. -Pascal

          by bernardpliers on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 04:49:00 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Thanks for the link. I was right (0+ / 0-)
            To transfer the tolerant Sub1 allele into the mega varieties, a MAB strategy was followed, with closely flanking markers used for recombinant selection to reduce the target introgression size and background markers used to select for recurrent parent alleles (Collard and Mackill, 2008). Population sizes ranged from 343 to 697 plants for the five MAB populations at the BC1 generation and 69 to 320 plants at the BC2 generation.

            An idea is not responsible for who happens to be carrying it at the moment. It stands or falls on its own merits.

            by don mikulecky on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 06:25:34 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Nope You're Wrong nt (0+ / 0-)

              Men are so necessarily mad, that not to be mad would amount to another form of madness. -Pascal

              by bernardpliers on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 06:39:06 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  All Plant Breeding Is "Recombination"&"Markers" nt (0+ / 0-)

              Men are so necessarily mad, that not to be mad would amount to another form of madness. -Pascal

              by bernardpliers on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 06:50:56 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  we are clearly using words differently (0+ / 0-)

                I know what I am speaking about.

                An idea is not responsible for who happens to be carrying it at the moment. It stands or falls on its own merits.

                by don mikulecky on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 07:04:11 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  Meaning Depends On The Context, Which Is Breeding (0+ / 0-)

                  in this case, not recombination done in the lab.

                  Men are so necessarily mad, that not to be mad would amount to another form of madness. -Pascal

                  by bernardpliers on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 07:20:50 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  The comparison was clear (0+ / 0-)

                    let's just drop it  since you refuse to try to read what I said

                    An idea is not responsible for who happens to be carrying it at the moment. It stands or falls on its own merits.

                    by don mikulecky on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 07:23:35 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  These Diaries Aren't Good Places To Chat (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      don mikulecky

                      And I'm tired and cranky, for which I apologize.

                      See you around!

                      Men are so necessarily mad, that not to be mad would amount to another form of madness. -Pascal

                      by bernardpliers on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 07:32:14 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                    •  As a layman, I can only really ask questions. (0+ / 0-)

                      I'm curious why that distinction would matter.  Do you think the difference in the process introduces a potential risk into the whole process?

                      And if so, how does the potential harm work?

                      •  If we had answers to those questions (0+ / 0-)

                        the problem would be solved.  

                        An idea is not responsible for who happens to be carrying it at the moment. It stands or falls on its own merits.

                        by don mikulecky on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 07:51:16 PM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                      •  "Marker" Can Mean Nearly Anything (0+ / 0-)

                        It can be natural or artificial in origin, it could be used in a naturally occurring process or a man made method.

                        In this case "marker" means a natural nearby gene effecting the color of the rice hull, not some foreign gene. The relative risk of a foreign gene is what people like to kick around.

                        Men are so necessarily mad, that not to be mad would amount to another form of madness. -Pascal

                        by bernardpliers on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 08:05:54 PM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                    •  Youre Right, You Know Backcrossing & Introgression (0+ / 0-)

                      My mistake in addressing my comment to you was I did not connect your screen name to the other comments upthread about your work back in 1970.  I'm sorry about that.  I'm bouncing in and out, doing other tasks.

                      Plant breeding is very close to undergraduate fruit fly lab, because that's the genetics of inbred populations. That's what these plant cultivars are, inbred Near Isogenic Lines.  When hybrid strains are commercialized, the NIL (the seed companies' IP) are used to create the hybrids sold to the farmer.

                      I think the flood tolerant rice is simply going to be in the public domain. And I'm pretty certain it was done entirely by conventional breeding following a couple natural markers.  

                      When they get down to the actual breeding of moving a gene from one rice variety to another, it's like crossing flies with none of the population genetics of the human genome.

                      Men are so necessarily mad, that not to be mad would amount to another form of madness. -Pascal

                      by bernardpliers on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 07:59:05 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

  •  My take on this as a programmer and scientist. (13+ / 0-)

    I see a lot of people getting yelled at whenever this topic comes up, called Luddites or worse.  It's happened to me a couple of times, elsewhere.  I am not a geneticist.  I study computers, artificial intelligence, and the brain.  I am not a goddamn Luddite so just hold your fire.

    Here is my question, mainly directed to the "shut up, GMOs are safe" camp.  It is based not on specific knowledge of the current state of GMO research -- of which I have little -- but on basic principle and my general scientific literacy -- of which I have really an awful lot.  It is this: is it actually your position that any modifications we may make to the genetic instructions of organisms is guaranteed to be totally safe?

    "Chill out, GMOs are safe" is so broad, and so dismissive, that I really must assume that a claim of that strength is being made.

    To me, this is an extraordinary claim, in need of extraordinary evidence.

    The genetic code is a programming language for self-replicating machines.  We don't know how to read or write this code very well yet.  But what about down the road, when we do?  Nobody's going to be able to do anything harmful?  Really?  How the hell do you know that?

    If you understand programming, skepticism about the wisdom of unlimited genetic tinkering should be your default starting position.  The "chill out" position has a very fucking high bar to clear.

    Somebody please explain to me how you all are so certain that every genetic program anyone will ever write will be unable to harm us.  A pile of studies on currently-existing GMOs is an insufficient argument; if you offer one, I will simply conclude you don't understand programming.

    •  Best comment in this whole thread. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      vinny67

      Indeed, Software QA is the most relevant field of expertise for discussing this issue.

      SQA Test Coverage is the relevant metric.

      First try to determine the algorithmic complexity for calculating SQA coverage metrics for extensible AI systems over their lifecycles.

      Then try to determine the algorithmic complexity for calculating SQA coverage metrics for AL (CA, NN, GA) systems over their lifecycles.

      Then try to determine the algorithmic complexity for calculating SQA coverage metrics for AL (CA, NN, GA) systems over their lifecycles, when implemented in mobile code, unsandboxed, and IP-connected.

      Then try to determine the algorithmic complexity for calculating SQA coverage metrics for AL (CA, NN, GA) systems over their lifecycles, when implemented in inherently unsandboxable wetware, and....

      ;)

      #3: ensure network neutrality; #2: ensure electoral integrity; #1: ensure ecosystemic sustainability.

      by ivote2004 on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 10:55:19 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  want to know if GMOs are safe? then look around (4+ / 0-)

      Everyone in the US has been eating GMOs for 20 years now. Virtually everything edible that has soy or corn in it, is GMO.

      And in that 20 years of 300 million people eating them every day, there has been NO demonstrated large-scale harmful effect from it, anywhere.  

      PS---all of the GMO genes are already existing--they have already been in the environment for millions of years. Where they have had no effect.

      In the end, reality always wins.

      by Lenny Flank on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 10:56:47 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  It seems the point of these diaries is to insult, (7+ / 0-)

      not to persuade. They are repetitive and probably not doing much but hardening existing views. How that does much but split the community I don't understand.

      •  for real (4+ / 0-)

        I've been pretty surprised by the attacks on my comments here. Not experienced that elsewhere in Kosland.

        He who throws mud only loses ground -- Fat Albert

        by c0wfunk on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 11:10:13 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  It is so interesting that (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          c0wfunk

          these so called experts here supporting genetic modification are so insecure when there is disagreement as to degrade the thread with childish and condescending insults.

          Name calling has always been the last resort when the debate has been lost.

          'How like fish we are: ready, nay, eager, to seize upon whatever new thing.......And how we rue our haste, finding the gilded morsel to contain a hook". ALDO LEOPOLD - A Sand County Almanac.............................. UID: 111992 Joined: Nov 17, 2006

          by flowerfarmer on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 06:12:01 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  Extraordinary evidence (0+ / 0-)

      Love the Carl Sagan quotation. Probably my fave from him.

      So here are more than 100 studies to get you started:

      All independently funded

    •  In the future? (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Armando

      Are you afraid of a lot of things that people might do with technology?

      I see little reason to consign one area of scientific study to the trash bin in order to avoid something that might occur in some imagined future.

      After all, computers might gain sentience, turn on their former masters and exterminate the human race.

      •  Yes, in the future. (4+ / 0-)

        As for the body of your comment... let me ask you a question back.  Do you need to have simple all or nothing rules for everything?  You seem to be espousing something analogous to libertarianism, but wrt technology.

        I don't see the point in arguing at that level of generality in this instance.  We are talking about something fairly unique here: tinkering with the programming language that we ourselves are written in.

        I am only a scientifically literate outsider here, but when I hear broad pronouncements that everyone should chill out, I worry that the insiders are going to be left to do as they please.  They absolutely should not be left to do as they please.  This field needs regulating like almost no other I can imagine.

        •  Regulate neuroscience and mind control techniques. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          vinny67

          As a general supporter of government regulation, I think it's important to make regulations that will actually have a likelihood of doing the thing they are intended to do.  And be specific enough that it will have the least restriction possible while granting all the desired benefits.

          How best to do that isn't always clear with regulations, but whether there ought to be a discussion about regulation is something that I believe can be established via standard scientific study, by experts in the relevant fields.

          I'm not convinced there's such a discussion to be had for any regulation with regards to GMOs (bad business practices aside).  I'm convinced such a case exists with regard to climate change (for example, we know the underlying mechanism behind it, so could work out something to address it).

          For the people who ideologically oppose all regulation, they hope to find onerous, stupid regulations in everything they see.  I want to avoid giving them any good ammunition to use to undermine confidence in government.  They'll still try to argue that regulations are always bad, but when they do it they'll be obvious anti-science morons all the way.

          Generally, I think global climate change will hammer the planet (mostly third world) hard, and GMO crops is one of the ways out that will save a lot of lives.

          I'll admit that I'd rather have a drastically different system of laws with regards to science and technology (one that doesn't result in being able to patent living things among other changes), but we're stuck with the system we've got, not the one we want.  We'd have to have major revisions to how we treat science for me to support anything else.  Unfortunately, I don't see that happening in my lifetime.

          Since it's your field, how would you respond to someone insisting that computer science needs to be regulated now to avoid a hostile AI type of scenario from wiping out the human species?  I ask that because it seems to be a worry that's about equally justified.

          •  It'd be great if the advice of experts in the (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            flowerfarmer

            relevant field was the major influence in what got regulated.  Unfortunately we're seeing how that plays out right now with climate change.  It certainly gives me little confidence that the right thing will happen in other fields.

            Yes, my own field also holds out the promise of great benefit and the possibility of great harm.  Most of the scenarios we are familiar with from science fiction remain remote.  There will come a time, however, when regulatory restraint will be appropriate.  We might even be there already for the subfield of data mining.

            I regard genetic manipulation as a few levels scarier than AI because we're talking about literally the code we and all other organisms are written in.  The whole world, covered in machines that execute that code, with poor security, and it's a universal code too.

            •  Data mining probably should be an issue. (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              vinny67

              I don't consider GMO to be scary on its own.  It's just another technology.  Maybe sometime in the future we'll get to an area of it we ought to talk about.  It's best left to then, because then we'll have a better idea on just what to do about it.

    •  did you read the diary? (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      serendipityisabitch, vinny67
      is it actually your position that any modifications we may make to the genetic instructions of organisms is guaranteed to be totally safe?
      Given that both Tyson and the diarist call for safety testing, I assume that the answer is No.

      No food whatsoever can be guaranteed to be totally safe. That isn't a reasonable interpretation of anything in the diary.

      But the diary is in an anti-anti vein, and it shouldn't (and won't) stand as the last word on how to handle GMO issues.

      "Democracy is a political system for people who are not sure they are right." —E. E. Schattschneider

      by HudsonValleyMark on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 04:43:34 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  After the first 2 pages of ad hominem attacks (0+ / 0-)

        I admit I started skimming a little bit.

        •  just skip them (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          serendipityisabitch, vinny67

          If you want to know what the diarist and/or Tyson think about GMOs, there is actually no point in reading what the diarist says about anything else, including Tyson or "the anti-GMO crowd." Sorta like Respectful Insolence: I find plenty of good information there, but I just have to screen out the blather.

          "Democracy is a political system for people who are not sure they are right." —E. E. Schattschneider

          by HudsonValleyMark on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 05:53:15 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  When we really master this programming language (0+ / 0-)

        it's going to be a whole different ball game.

        •  one thing about that (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          c0wfunk, vinny67

          If we literally get stuck on "Frankenfood," then we will get nowhere near mastering the genetic language.

          At the same time, if we don't acknowledge the limits of our present understanding, we can make all kinds of messes.

          Have you followed the technical debate over internet voting? It's kind of maddening, because often people with distinguished careers of technological innovation are dismissed as fearmongering Luddites. It would be nice if we could set aside content-free arguments on all sides and keep it real.

          "Democracy is a political system for people who are not sure they are right." —E. E. Schattschneider

          by HudsonValleyMark on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 06:04:31 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  this (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            vinny67

            "At the same time, if we don't acknowledge the limits of our present understanding, we can make all kinds of messes."

            is what seems to be missing with the proGMO voices in this thread.

            He who throws mud only loses ground -- Fat Albert

            by c0wfunk on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 11:12:59 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  typical meta (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              vinny67, serendipityisabitch, c0wfunk

              I don't think the diary stakes out an extreme position on safety, or really, a very clear position at all.

              It would be interesting to pluck three or four (relatively well-informed) people from this thread, lock them in a room, and see what policy recommendations they could agree on, or even specifically what recommendations they couldn't agree on and why, but without all the rhetorical button-pushing.

              "Democracy is a political system for people who are not sure they are right." —E. E. Schattschneider

              by HudsonValleyMark on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 11:26:42 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

          •  Funny you should mention internet voting. (3+ / 0-)

            This thread has had me thinking about it.

            Since I was already a computer professional post-Florida, I was one of the people freaking out about it.

            There was no way to explain it to people back then.  People were too unfamiliar with computers.  I'm not sure it'd be much better now actually.  Everybody's a user now, but I'm not sure how much an average user can understand the sense of horror a computer professional feels when contemplating electronic voting.

            •  it's a slog (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              RiveroftheWest

              Public support for internet voting tends to be broad and shallow. But the biggest problem, it seems, is the elected officials who decide that it's a great idea and any "technical problems" must have workarounds.

              "Democracy is a political system for people who are not sure they are right." —E. E. Schattschneider

              by HudsonValleyMark on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 06:13:30 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

    •  Guaranteed? 100%? (0+ / 0-)

      Honestly, that is not scientific at all.

    •  As a computer programmer, you can get this (4+ / 0-)

      The vast majority of "serious bugs" in genetic code will halt life before it gets too far.

      That's why a lot of seeds are non-viable, and won't grow despite having ideal conditions.  That's why many pregnancies in mammals don't come to term.  That's why some eggs in insects are duds.  

      Genetics is the messiest computer code ever, and sometimes the program just isn't going to compile and run because the code is scrambled.

      Sometimes the code has minor modifications and typos that don't halt the program from running until you try to do some specific function.  (Good ol' "object reference is not an instance of an object" blah blah.)

      Sometimes the code is structurally sound and functionally correct but has a security vulnerability (e.g. it isn't resistant to some sort of fungus or it tastes delicious to a beetle.)

      ADDING security to block vulnerabilities in code is not a bad thing in computer science.

      Why is it such a bad thing with agriculture?

      The Cake is a lie. In Pie there is Truth. ~ Fordmandalay

      by catwho on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 07:00:09 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I'm not quite sure what you're asking there at the (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        catwho

        end.  But thanks for being one of the few to engage the subject I raised.

        Bugs in computer code exist along a wide spectrum, from simple syntax-error type bugs that never get past the compiler, or which cause the program to crash immediately, to design flaws that have consequences of varying seriousness down the road.  It seems to me that as our ability to program in the language of genes improves, it will become progressively easier to avoid the easily-caught kinds of errors... thus freeing up the practitioners to pursue loftier ambitions.

    •  Bingo! (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      vinny67
      "Chill out, GMOs are safe" is so broad, and so dismissive, that I really must assume that a claim of that strength is being made.
      To me, this is an extraordinary claim, in need of extraordinary evidence.
      My thoughts about GMOs were starting to gell around this idea. Thank you for articulating it so well.
      Agree with ivote2004. Best comment on thread.

      "When I see I am nothing, that is wisdom. When I see I am everything, that is love. My life is a movement between these two." - Nisargadatta Maharaj.

      by mkor7 on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 12:37:43 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Most Foods (Plants) Are Measurably Toxic (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    catwho

    Let's list the toxin profiles of all plant foods.  People will be stunned.

    And label the DNA content of all food.  I'm guessing a lot of consumers would be stunned to know their organic apple is 2% DNA.

    Men are so necessarily mad, that not to be mad would amount to another form of madness. -Pascal

    by bernardpliers on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 09:53:03 PM PDT

  •  Well, GMO testing has little to do with health (4+ / 0-)
    "I find it ironic that there's an implication that "organic" means healthy and GMO isn't, when the science behind GMO's is significantly broader and deeper than with regards to organic foods."
    Testing relates to viability and profitability, but even that is limited because it doesn't occur under real world conditions. "Organic" foods have undergone thousands of years of field testing.

    I am not opposed to some use of GMO crops, but they mustn't replace all variety, or we end up with a threatened crop such as bananas.

    Coming Soon -- to an Internet connection near you: Armisticeproject.org

    by FischFry on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 10:07:44 PM PDT

    •  1000x (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      FischFry, c0wfunk, mkor7
      "Organic" foods have undergone thousands of years of field testing.
      And that's often after millions of years of R&D ;)

      #3: ensure network neutrality; #2: ensure electoral integrity; #1: ensure ecosystemic sustainability.

      by ivote2004 on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 10:33:40 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  ironic you would saay this, since GMO is what (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Yoshimi
      I am not opposed to some use of GMO crops, but they mustn't replace all variety, or we end up with a threatened crop such as bananas.
      saved papayas, and is currently being used to save bananas.

      In the end, reality always wins.

      by Lenny Flank on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 10:57:38 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I am aware of developments with both crops (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        c0wfunk

        It was the narrowing of varieties caused by the spread of genetically modified varieties that made the threats so prodigious in the first place.

        There's nothing wrong inherently with genetic modification -- but, we've got a lot to learn about doing it smartly.

        Coming Soon -- to an Internet connection near you: Armisticeproject.org

        by FischFry on Tue Aug 05, 2014 at 08:35:17 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  I watch the video clip. My take is the Dr. Tyson.. (7+ / 0-)

    ..wasn't defending the safety of GMO foods so much as he was criticizing the poor quality of the arguments against GMO.

    The ad hominem attacks on Tyson that I've seen on Facebook only underline his critique.

    I supported the GMO labeling initiative in California in 2012, because I like food labeling on principle. GMO labeling would merely shift the burden of proof from the consumer to the producer... where it belongs.

    But I ran into a few young, educated, tech-oriented voters who thought that the whole thing was "anti-science" and considered it as disreputable as the anti-vaccination movement.

    The anti-GMO folks have a messaging problem. They do come across as Luddites or conspiracy-theorists. They need to stop responding to their scientific critics with the same knee-jerk attacks they level at their political and corporate adversaries.

    If they would accept that Tyson is entitled to his opinion that transgenic technology is not inherently harmful, and engage him on the broader issues of nutritional deficiencies, bio-diversity, and ecological blowback... they might find just him to be an powerful ally.

    “It is useless to attempt to reason a man out of a thing
    he was never reasoned into” - Jonathan Swift

    by jjohnjj on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 10:09:05 PM PDT

    •  An enlightened discussion would be quite different (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      catwho

      If there wasn't popular anti-science around this issue, I do think the debate would be quite different.  But because we live in the world we have and not the ideal, I feel like I must support the least harmful policy.

      And I've made the personal decision that the least harmful policy is anti-label.  Among other things, I don't believe in flattering superstition.  The same clueless people would simply demand another sacrifice to the god of ignorance.

  •  Genetically altered is not the same thing (6+ / 0-)

    as genetically modified. Your entire argument is based upon this invalid premise.

    I have no issues with seed companies breeding plants from the same genus family together to create more desirable plants in order to have a product to market. However, that is not the same thing as genetically splicing genes from bacteria into a plant to create a plant that is tolerant to the application of proprietary chemicals. When a plant is created that could not be created in nature then I have a problem.

    It does not matter to me if there have been no human health issues directly attributed to genetically engineered foods...yet. I want the ability to opt out of the entire experiment. That means genetically engineered foods have to be labeled.  

    Really don't mind if you sit this one out. My words but a whisper -- your deafness a SHOUT. I may make you feel but I can't make you think..Jethro Tull

    by RMForbes on Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 10:21:55 PM PDT