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#90023 - 03/31/07 11:21 AM Re: Whats happening to the Bees? [Re: Russ]

Re Susan – Excellent comment about the possible loss of the Bee Population due to Genetically Modified (GM) Crops. For many thousands of years since human society have progressed from hunter gatherers through farming then through the industrial revolution and then ultimately urbanization, there is a long history of refinement in the quality and productivity of crops and farm animals. This has been done through selective breeding.
Without these advances in selective breeding for farming we would not be able to feed the human race. But GM crops are a step to far. Industrial and post industrial societies have lost the connection with nature and most cannot grasp the dangers, which GM crops and Cloned farmed Animals represent. Ultimately the push for GM and Cloning is purely down to corporate profit and greed through the use of intellectual property rights. Here in the United Kingdom we have seen the results of the disgusting Industrial farming practices - BSE in cattle. I hope we here in the United Kingdom have learnt the lesson.

The main problem I see is the fact that urban human beings have absolutely no idea where their food comes from. I find it shocking that many children cannot even tell that Chips (French Fries or Freedom Fries) are actually made from potatoes. The majority of small children can tell you what the McDonalds Corporate Double Arches Symbol looks like but can’t tell what a turnip or leek looks like. Ronald McDonald has aways gave me the creeps. Cheese does not come out of a pressurised can and meat and fish does not come readily wrapped in a cardboard box or plastic. Therefore the consequential use of GM food does not even register with hundreds of millions of urbanised city people. Could the Science fiction movie film Soylent Green become a reality? I think we should all heed the warnings from that movie. I think we should all have respect for the animals and food that we consume no matter the shareholders demands.

Gratuitus picture of a Scottish Highland Cow.

GM food is essentially banned in the United Kingdom, although you'll be surprised at the efforts the US corporations have tried to get this decision reversed. People have also voted with their feet. Even if GM crops were allowed to be planted, they would soon be destroyed by protesters and the general public would not purchase the food products made with GM crops.

If there is a link between Bee Colony numbers and GM food I would find this extremely worrying. If GM crops can effect the local bio-ecology in such a profound way then it may also effect the spider populations. The consequences of that are unthinkable. The Open letter link on your post was very disturbing. It may come about that GM crops may ultimately cause the failure of argiculture in areas where GM has been planted. The most disturbing thought of course is that once GM had been released into the Biosphere, it cannot be contained. Has there also been any reported increase in swarms of flies and other disease carrying insects also where GM crops have been planted in the United States?

During a recent famine relief in an African country the government of that country had passed a law to ban the use of GM crops in the country because of issues due to the poor being forced to pay royalties to the GM seed manufacturers – The US government would only allow GM food relief. The US government is actively promoting GM as part of its foreign policy.

Lets hope there will be a day of reckoning for the greedy corporate types who have ultimately infringed on Gaia's copyright and we can teach our children where our food ultimately comes from. The fertile earth which needs to be managed with responsibilty.

Edited by bentirran (03/31/07 12:33 PM)

#90053 - 03/31/07 05:26 PM Re: Whats happening to the Bees? [Re: Susan]
Russ Offline

Registered: 06/02/06
Posts: 5052
Good letter, apparently unread or under-appreciated. Monsanto has strong support in Washington DC so we'll probably need to get further down the slippery slope before people attempt to climb back up the hill. More likely though they'll first attempt another technique with yet more intellectual property.

#90078 - 04/01/07 01:35 AM Re: Whats happening to the Bees? [Re: Susan]
thseng Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 03/24/06
Posts: 900
Loc: NW NJ
Originally Posted By: Susan
Apparently, it has been clearly proven that the DNA from GM crops can be absorbed by ingesting a single meal of the crop, AND it can be acquired from inhaling the pollen or working with the crop during processing.

Sue, I take back my comment about you being too cynical. Just what do you think happens to the DNA of everything single thing you eat? Or do you think that somehow the GM DNA somehow incorporates itself into your own DNA?

Reminds me of a young girl who was horrified to find out that there was a skeleton living inside of her.

Or people conned into signing a petition to ban Dihydrogen Monoxide.
- Tom S.

"Never trust and engineer who doesn't carry a pocketknife."

#90082 - 04/01/07 02:27 AM Re: Whats happening to the Bees? [Re: thseng]
wildman800 Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 11/09/06
Posts: 2813
Loc: La-USA
IMHO, today's living requires a healthy dose of cynicism, skepticism, paranoia, and the ability to read between the lines!

That's the society we have and that's what it takes to survive and thrive.
The best luck is what you make yourself!

#90092 - 04/01/07 03:53 AM Re: Whats happening to the Bees? [Re: thseng]
Susan Offline

Registered: 01/21/04
Posts: 5163
Loc: W. WA
I'm not a scientist, and there's a lot I don't understand about GM crops (among a ton of other things). But there's a lot NOBODY knows about GM crops, including the people who created them.

You don't think there might be a vast difference between what they might do to us, as opposed to what "normal" plants might do?

I've heard that problems are already showing up in animals raised on GM feed. But they're feeding those animals to us, and the GM crops themselves directly (esp in the form of rape/canola oil and soybeans, plus others)

England has barred GM plants from being grown there, but the English plant relatives of our GM crops are showing up with GM changes in them, so that means the pollen is being dispersed worldwide, not that 1/8th acre that the GM folks promised. What to you think that does to the biodiversity of future food plants?

But can just continue blindly following the trail of GM seeds that they're laying down for you... They're depending on people like you.


#90095 - 04/01/07 04:48 AM Re: Whats happening to the Bees? [Re: thseng]
ironraven Offline
Cranky Geek
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 09/08/05
Posts: 4642
Loc: Vermont
It's the splices that are scary. Like taking putting peanut enzymes into tomatoes so they last longer and are tougher- that's something that has been tried. Looks like a tomato, tastes like a tomato, splats like a tomato when you kick it, but if you have certain allergies, it kills like a peanut.

Others are actually designed to produce their own pesticides. Sure, it's only supposed to kill aphids or repel potato beetles, but if it scaring away or killing the insect pollinators, well....

Don't get me wrong, I think gene mods are great. Like pharmagoats, or the silk worms who's poo is twice as strong as regular silk.I think the idea of modding pigs to produce harvestable organs that are compatible with humans and have something like a quarter of the rejection rate is great, but I won't eat one. They are industrial equipment of a biological rather than mechanical origin. I don't want them getting into the wild under any circumstances. And if it's outside and not sterile (and we've heard "don't worry, it's sterile" bit before), then there is no certainty that it won't get into the wild.

When a man dare not speak without malice for fear of giving insult, that is when truth starts to die. Truth is the truest freedom.

#90107 - 04/01/07 07:42 AM Re: Whats happening to the Bees? [Re: ironraven]
LED Offline

Registered: 09/01/05
Posts: 1474
does anyone know the likelihood (or possibility) of vegitation like weeds being effected in the GM process? basically is it possible we are inadvertently helping create a type of "super weed" that robs soil of nutrients and is extremely difficult to eradicate?

#90116 - 04/01/07 01:45 PM Re: Whats happening to the Bees? [Re: Susan]
Russ Offline

Registered: 06/02/06
Posts: 5052
Unfortunately, the cause of CCD is not well understood. As much as I'd like to be able to point my finger at one causal factor (GMO), the evidence apparently isn't there (yet). Just theories some folks read as fact.

That said, I'm considering starting an apiary in an area where there is no large crop production, just fruit trees, wild blackberries and thistles, lots of thistles. If I do this (still studying) a healthy bee population (not pollinating commercial crops or collecting honey) will be the only goal. On the side the fruit trees, blackberries and thistles will be pollinated. I can whack the thistles later.

#90709 - 04/08/07 04:33 PM Re: Whats happening to the Bees? [Re: LED]
Russ Offline

Registered: 06/02/06
Posts: 5052

#90852 - 04/11/07 12:11 AM Re: Whats happening to the Bees? [Re: LED]

Some thoughts on Bees and the madness of biofuels from Fidel Castro

Edited by bentirran (04/11/07 05:45 PM)

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