Monsanto is now in full retreat against a global grassroots rejection of its poisons and lies. The company is backpedaling on every front now, even admitting defeat in Europe and now trying to focus its last, desperate efforts on the United States and Brazil.
But even in the Americas, Monsanto is losing on every front: GMO labeling legislation is cropping up in over a dozen states, the global March Against Monsanto demonstrated global grassroots unity against GMOs, and even the so-called “science” behind the “safety” GMOs is revealed as utter hogwash now that GMOs have escaped Monsanto’s experimental wheat fields and contaminated commercial wheat crops in America.
Japan has halted U.S. wheat imports and South Korea joined in as well. Ben & Jerry’s ice cream company has announced it is going 100% GMO-free, and massive boycotts are underway against brands that tried to block the GMO labeling ballot measure in California (Prop 37).
We’ve reached the tipping point against Monsant
Jeffrey Smith of http://www.ResponsibleTechnology.org has always talked about a “tipping point” being reached on GMOs, after which the flood of consumer awareness and demand would force food manufacturers and retailers to begin the process of ditching GMOs. I believe that tipping point has now been reached. In fact, I believe the March Against Monsanto was the final push over the fulcrum of the tipping point, and I am ecstatic that so many people all around the world marched in the streets to protest global food injustice while the wholly-discredited mainstream media sat back and pretended the march never even took place!
In one fell sweep, the tipping point against Monsanto was triggered and the whole world realized the mainstream media has zero credibility. I’ll call that a victory any day!
Next steps: Commands from headquarters?
If you’re waiting for “commands from headquarters” to figure out what’s next in the war for food justice and farming justice — the war against Monsanto and GMOs — you don’t really understand this movement. The beauty of everything that’s happening today is that there IS no headquarters!
Activists against Monsanto are simply making this up as we go along. There is no “leader.” There is no secret strategy meeting. There are no talking points. There is no overarching set of milestones being discussed. There is no one person that makes all this happen.
The anti-GMO movement is all just large numbers of courageous individuals waking up and doing what needs to be done, whether that’s organizing a march, posting videos online, boycotting food brands that use GMOs, or holding home-viewing parties of DVDs that educate people on the truth about GMOs.
This is the movement’s strength. This is why nobody can be intimidated, sued or shut down by Monsanto. Behind every activist there are a thousand more carrying the torch for food justice. The anti-GMO grassroots movement absolutely will not stop until GMOs are banned from the global food supply, and that bold statement is just as true in Venezuela and Portugal as the United States. Everywhere that people eat food and grow food, everyone who is informed supports the idea of outlawing GMOs entirely.
This goal will be achieved. I can see it now with clarity. The grassroots energy behind this movement is unstoppable. And while everyone in the grassroots anti-GMO movement may come from slightly different viewpoints on other social, political and economic issues, they all agree that GMOs have no place in the food supply, period!
As I recently said in my speech at the March Against Monsanto in Austin:
“The fact that you are here, in all your beautiful diversity… is proof that they cannot divide us! They can only unite us with their insanity!”
If you are part of the effort to stop Monsanto and outlaw GMOs, you are winning. You are making a measurable, effective difference in the world, and the positive shockwaves of your efforts will be felt for generations to come.
Keep up the good work. 🙂
When I was a graduate student in economics, the social cost of capitalism was a big issue in economic theory. Since those decades ago, the social costs of capitalism have exploded, but the issue seems no longer to trouble the economics profession.
Social costs are costs of production that are not born by the producer or included in the price of the product. There are many classic examples: the pollution of air, water, and land from mining, fracking, oil drilling and pipeline spills, chemical fertilizer farming, GMOs, pesticides, radioactivity released from nuclear accidents, and the the pollution of food by antibiotics and artificial hormones.
Some economists believe that these traditional social costs can be dealt with by well defined property rights. Others think that benevolent government will control social costs in the interests of society.
Today there are new social costs brought by globalism. For developed countries, these are unemployment, lost consumer income, tax base, and GDP growth, and rising trade and current account deficits from the offshoring of manufacturing and tradable professional service jobs. The trade and current account deficits can result in a falling exchange value of the currency and rising inflation from import prices. For underdeveloped countries, the costs are the loss of self-sufficiency and the transformation of agriculture into monocultures to feed the needs of international corporations.
Economists are oblivious to this new epidemic of social costs, because they mistakenly think that globalism is free trade and that free trade is always beneficial.
Economists are also unaware of the social costs of deregulation. The ongoing financial crisis which requires massive public subsidies to “banks too big to fail” is a social cost resulting from government accommodating Wall Street pressure to deregulate the financial system by repealing the Glass-Steagall Act, by removing the position limits on speculators, by preventing the CFTC from regulating derivatives, and by turning the Anti-Trust Act into dead-letter law and permitting massive economic concentrations. The social costs of successful corporate lobbying is enormous. But economists who believe that markets are self-regulating imagine that an enormous gain in efficiency has occurred, not massive social costs.
In order to keep the deregulated financial system afloat, the Federal Reserve has monetized trillions of dollars of debt over the last several years. Real interest rates have been driven into negative territory. Retirees are unable to earn any interest income on their savings and have to draw down their capital in order to cover their living expenses.
The liquidity injected into financial markets by the Federal Reserve’s policy of quantitative easing has produced huge bond and stock market bubbles. When they pop, more American wealth will be wiped out and more jobs will be lost.
Consider just one example of the social costs of jobs off-shoring. When US corporations produce abroad the goods and services that they market to Americans, the goods and services that flow into the US arrive as imports. Thus, the trade deficit rises dollar for dollar.
The trade deficit means that the US has imported more than it has earned in foreign currencies by exporting. For most countries this would be a problem, but not for the US. The US dollar is the world reserve currency, which means that it is the means of international payment and that foreign central banks hold US dollars as reserves to secure the values of their own currencies.
With the passage of time, this advantage becomes a disadvantage, because foreigners use the dollars gained from their trade surpluses to buy up American income-producing assets. They buy US Treasury bonds and US corporate bonds, and the interest income leaves the country. They purchase US companies, and the profits, dividends and capital gains leave the country. They lease Chicago’s parking meters and American toll roads, and the revenues flow abroad.
The enormous outflow of income streams creates a large current account deficit for the US, which means that foreigners have even more surplus dollars with which to buy up more US assets. In other words, a chronic trade deficit is a way to redirect a country’s revenues and profits into overseas hands.
The ownership of a country changes from its own citizens to foreigners. According to Reuters, in 1971 foreign companies owned 1.3% of all corporate US assets.
By 2008 foreigners owned 14.2 percent of all US industries, including 21.5% of mining, 25% of manufacturing, 30.2% of wholesale trade, 12% of information industries, 12% of real estate, 15% of finance and insurance, 25% of professional, scientific, and technical services, 11% of entertainment and recreation and 11% of accommodation and food services, according to a report from Economy In Crisis.
Numerous famous American brand names now are companies owned by foreigners. Budweiser belongs to a Dutch company. Alka Seltzer belongs to a German company. Firestone belongs to a Japanese company. The magazines Car and Driver and Woman’s Day are owned by a French company. Gerber baby food and Purina dog food belong to Swiss companies. Hellman’s Mayonnaise and Ben & Jerry’s ice cream belong to UK companies. Many thousands of former US companies have moved into foreign control as a result of the US trade deficit, which is swollen by the off-shored production of US corporations.
The policy of chasing lowest labor cost abroad, that is, of pursuing absolute advantage, the antithesis of comparative advantage which is the basis of free trade, is the redirection of US profits, capital gains, rents, interest, parking meter and toll road fees into foreign hands.
Thus, there is a high social cost from corporate executives pursuing short-term profits in order to maximize their performance bonuses. The profits from off-shored production are not indications of economic efficiency and social welfare. Most likely, the social costs to the US of off-shored production are larger than the profits gained, making jobs off-shoring a net loss to the US economy. There is little doubt that the social costs of GMOs exceed the profits of Monsanto.
But don’t expect mainstream economists to pay any attention. They are still waxing eloquently about the advantages of Globalism’s gift of the New Economy of high unemployment and low wages, financial crisis and dollar erosion.