Are some Americans being poisoned from food contamination of a heavily used herbicide?
A recent peer-reviewed study of the herbicide Roundup appearing in the scientific journal Entropy indicates that this may be so.
The chemical in question is glyphosate, the main ingredient in Monsanto’s Roundup. The study reveals that measurable amounts of glyphosate have been found in food sold to the public. And, according to the study, this chemical has serious detrimental effects to the human body.
Serious Side Effects
“Negative impact on the body is insidious and manifests slowly over time as inflammation damages cellular systems throughout the body,” say study authors Stephanie Seneff, of Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and Anthony Samsel.
According to the study, Glyphosate impairs the CYP (Cytochrome P450) pathway, a gene pathway vital to forming and breaking down molecules in cells, as well as enzyme functions that regulate some hormones and blood pressure. The abstract of the study states serious side effects: “Consequences are most of the diseases and conditions associated with a Western diet, which include gastrointestinal disorders, obesity, diabetes, heart disease, depression, autism, infertility, cancer and Alzheimer’s disease.”
Roundup works in conjunction with is Monsanto’s biotech crops, which are genetically engineered to be immune to the herbicide. Roundup is used on millions of acres of food crops, which include corn, sugarbeets, and canola.
According to the Environmental Protection Agency, glyphosate is the most popular herbicide in the country. It is widely used in lawn care, gardens, and golf courses all over the country.
Monsanto Refutes the Science
Monsanto denies all of these claims, and insists its product is safe. Monsanto’s Executive Vice President of Sustainability says “We are very confident in the long track record that glyphosate has. It has been very, very extensively studied.”
Review Not Coming Until 2015
As far as oversight is concerned, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is continuing a standard review of glyphosate, and will determine whether use of said chemical should be restricted…in 2015.
The Huffington Post, Entropy Abstract, Medical Daily
DALLAS — On Thanksgiving afternoon, as freshly stuffed Americans prepared for the shopping bacchanal known as Black Friday, hundreds of Walmart workers readied themselves for a wholly different experience: joining strikes and labor actions planned for the next two days at some 1,000 Walmart stores around the country.
Here in Dallas, as well as in Miami and the San Francisco area, Walmart employees were planning to walk off work and demonstrate early Thursday evening, as shoppers began to arrive in pursuit of the ultra-cheap deals known as doorbusters. The strikers sought to protest low wages and a lack of benefits, while also challenging what they allege has been a pattern of Walmart’s retaliation against workers who try to organize. They hoped to use the Black Friday spotlight to sway shoppers to their side.
“It’s a question of education,” said Josue Mata, a maintenance worker at Walmart in Wheatland, Texas, and a member of OUR Walmart, the labor group that is coordinating the strikes. “We have to show people that we’re not just a crazy bunch of protesters.”
But Walmart, the world’s largest retail chain, was banking on the labor actions amounting to not much in the face of enormous consumer demand for what it provides best: a wide array of products at some of the very lowest prices available. “We don’t expect this to have a significant impact,” Walmart spokesperson Kory Lundberg told The Huffington Post in a phone interview. “The overwhelming majority of our associates are excited for our Black Friday events.” (The company calls its workers “associates.”)
In short, the protests aimed at Walmart on what is traditionally the busiest shopping day of the year may constitute a test of the nation’s sympathy for low-wage workers — many of whom earn so little that they qualify for food stamps — against the powerful American yearning for a great deal.
In Dallas, about 200 people were expected to protest Thursday night, according to Colby Harris, a three-year employee in the produce department of the nearby Lancaster, Texas, store who has become a public face for the workers’ movement. “This is only getting bigger,” he said over breakfast at Waffle House on Thursday morning.
Despite a notoriously unfriendly attitude toward unions, Dallas has become a main center for the strikes, along with Los Angeles and Chicago. Harris’ store was one of the first to host protests back in October, when, for the first time in Walmart history, its retail workers in 28 states went on strike.
Around 6 p.m. Thursday, Harris, Mata and 200 others — including Walmart employees, organizers from the United Food and Commercial Workers Union and activists from the local Occupy chapter — planned to meet at a hotel in South Dallas. The group would then split up to picket at multiple stores and regather around 10 p.m. at the Walmart Supercenter in Wheatland. In Miami and San Leandro, Calif., protesters were planning flash mobs complete with dance routines.
Mata acknowledged that approaching the bargain-hungry might be difficult. “The classic question [from local reporters] is, ‘Why don’t you just accept what you have?’ They say, ‘You should be thankful you have a job.'”
Like other strikers, Mata said many Walmart jobs pay barely enough to survive. According to the company’s internal pay plan, recently obtained by The Huffington Post, employees can work at Walmart for decades before they make much above minimum wage. And as the largest private employer in the U.S., Walmart has an outsized influence on working conditions in the retail industry as a whole.
Walmart says it has done little beyond the norm to prepare for the Black Friday strikes, which it expects to be minimal. But a handful of sources around the country as well as news reports claimed that Walmart managers were intimidating workers into not protesting. Vanessa Ferreira, an Orlando, Fla., Walmart worker, was charged with trespassing when she went on strike this week. Another worker in Oklahoma told The Nation that managers at his store informed workers they would see smaller bonuses if protests disrupted Black Friday shopping.
On Tuesday, OUR Walmart filed a complaint with the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) accusing Walmart of retaliating against striking workers. The previous Friday, Walmart had filed its own complaint with the NLRB, alleging that the United Food and Commercial Workers Union, which supports OUR Walmart financially, has illegally picketed in order to gain union recognition. Walmart has repeatedly denied that it has ever retaliated against its workers.
Fearing police and security confrontations, the strikers adjusted their plans to go inside the stores, according to Alan Morrisette, a field organizer for the union’s Making Change at Walmart Campaign. All demonstrations on Thursday and Friday would be held outside the stores, he said.
Walmart did not comment on how it plans to handle striking workers. “Each store has an individualized plan of how they will get customers in and out of stores and deal with large crowds,” said Lundberg. “If a walkout does happen at an individual store, the store management will judge that on a case-by-case basis. We think there are going to be so few of these it’s best to be handled individually.”
One worker in the Chicago area, who asked that her name not be mentioned for fear of losing her job, told The Huffington Post that managers earlier this week covered up her store’s employee rights notice, which informs workers of their right to concerted action. Her managers also implemented a new program that would give workers an extra 10 percent discount on Walmart purchases for working on Black Friday, she said.
Harris and Mata said the program, dubbed “associate appreciation day,” had been recently implemented in their Dallas-area stores as well. “They’re trying to get on our good side to get us to forget what it’s like most of the time,” said Harris.
In an ideal world, Harris said, Walmart would meet all of the strikers’ demands by publicly committing to raise pay, improve benefits and not impede workers’ efforts to unionize. But even if the company simply reached out to OUR Walmart to express an interest in compromise, he would be happy, Harris said.
“We already consider this a victory,” said Harris. “People are hearing us, and Walmart knows we’re not going to stop.”
WASHINGTON — The Daily Caller broke the news Friday that a single anonymous source is pretty sure he heard correctly when another guy told him that President Barack Obama probably got a 2.6 grade-point average at Columbia University. While The Daily Caller could not confirm this information, because why would it bother to do something like that, the report did raise a host of questions about this man — Barack Obama — who wants to be our president, and who indeed has been our president, despite the fact that we know almost nothing about him, because no television cameras have been pointed at him ever, in his life.
One of the more obvious questions that The Daily Caller’s exclusive “some stuff someone heard about a grade-point average” story immediately raised was, “Is it true that the honorary degree that Barack Obama received from the University of Michigan was printed on rolling papers?” This is a subject that has been the source of much speculation, for many hours. But we need wonder no longer.
Seven sources who have email accounts and know how to type words have contacted the Huffington Post Friday to independently confirm that that the honorary degree that Obama received from the University of Michigan was totally printed on rolling papers. We have agreed to protect the anonymity of these sources, as each has expressed a certain amount of fear for their livelihoods, should they become known as the sources for this story. We feel, however, that their accounts, which corroborate one another, are reliable enough to go ahead and write a blog post about this.
Naturally, these accounts are contradicted by the evidence — by which I mean, the lack thereof. Obama has thus far refused to release his honorary degree from the University of Michigan to confirm whether it was printed on rolling papers, or if the degree, once obtained, was utilized as an enclosure for — as it’s known on the streets — “dat sticky-icky.” In refusing to release the degree, the White House has fallen back on the excuse, “Well, this is actually the first time we have ever been asked about this.” But, remember, Barack Obama promised to make his administration the “most transparent White House in history.”