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MindMover

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Member since: Sun Jul 31, 2011, 05:36 PM
Number of posts: 4,899

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NATURE’S DYING MIGRANT WORKER

On a cool January day in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada mountains, Steve Ellis culled his sick bees. The only sounds were their steady buzz and the chuffing of the smoker he used to keep them calm as he opened the hives, one by one, to see how many had survived. The painful chore has become an annual ritual for Ellis, and, hardened now like a medic on the front lines, he crowned another box with a big rock to mark it.

“This one is G.A.D.,” he said. “Good as dead.”

Ellis, of Barrett, Minn., is one of some 1,300 commercial beekeepers from across the United States who migrate to California each year, along with nearly 2 million hives, for the single largest pollination event in the world. Below him in the sprawling valley, nearly 1,400 square miles of almond trees — three-fourths of the global supply — were ready to burst out into a frothy sea of pink and white. To grow into a nut, every single blossom would need at least one American honeybee.

Ever since the ominous phrase “colony collapse disorder” first surfaced in 2006, scientists have struggled to explain the mysterious mass die-offs of honeybees. But here in America’s food basket the escalating stakes are laid out as clearly as the almond trees that march in perfect rows up to the horizon.

BEES AT THE BRINK
An occasional series examining the mysterious decline of the honeybee and its consequences for the American consumer. (1:27)
Modern farm economics have created an enormously productive system of genetically engineered, chemically dependent agriculture. But it relies on just one domesticated insect to deliver a third of the food on our plate.

The Killing Fields of the Midwest

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http://www.startribune.com/local/264929101.html

SUPREME COURT UPHOLDS LITTLE CAESAR’S RIGHT TO FEED CHRISTIAN EMPLOYEES TO LIONS

WASHINGTON, DC–The Supreme Court ruled on Monday that Roman-owned
pizza chain Little Caesar’s was within its rights to place Christian employees in an arena and then unleash starved, vicious lions and lionesses upon them. The court cited religious freedom as its guiding principle. The 5-to-4 ruling opened the door to potentially thousands of Christian Little Caesar employees nationwide being immediately fed to the top predators of the African savannah.

Little Caesar’s argued that the persecution of Christians and the feeding of them to ravenous big cats was a “deeply held” religious belief, that the continued survival of the roughly 6,000 Christian employees, as well as the fact that they remained on company payroll, imposed a “substantial financial burden” on their religious liberty.

The 5 conservative Justices agreed. Justice Samuel A. Alito Jr, the author of the majority opinion, wrote:

While it is debatable that some harm may come to any Christians fed to a lion or lioness, there is certainly demonstrable harm being done to these animals that are denied the tasty, nutrient-rich Christians that their diet requires

http://www.atlbanana.com/supreme-court-upholds-little-caesars-right-to-feed-christian-employees-to-lions/

Truvia sweetener a powerful pesticide; scientists shocked as fruit flies die in less than a week

(NaturalNews) Truvia sweetener is made from about 99.5% erythritol (a sugar alcohol), and 0.5% rebiana, an extract from the stevia plant (but not at all the same thing as stevia). A shocking new study published in the journal PLOS ONE (1) has found that Truvia, an alternative sweetener manufactured by food giant Cargill, is a potent insecticide that kills fruit flies which consume it.

The study is titled, Erythritol, a Non-Nutritive Sugar Alcohol Sweetener and the Main Component of Truvia, Is a Palatable Ingested Insecticide.

The study found that while fruit flies normally live between 39 and 51 days, those that ate the Truvia ingredient erythritol died in less than a week.


Erythritol made from yeast fed genetically modified corn derivatives

Erythritol is often indirectly derived from genetically modified corn, by the way. Cargill was forced to settle a class action lawsuit last year (2) for labeling Truvia "natural" when it's actually made from a fermentation process whereby yeast are fed GM corn maltodextrin.

Cargill plays word games with this process, insisting that "erythritol is not derived from corn or dextrose feedstock; it is derived from the yeast organism."

http://www.naturalnews.com/045450_Truvia_erythritol_natural_pesticide.html

http://www.plosone.org/article/info%3Adoi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.pone.0098949

Federal regulations on chemicals in environment need overhaul

Federal policies regulating the sea of industrial chemicals we encounter in everyday life—and new ones being formulated in laboratories—are “broken” and in need of urgent overhaul to better protect our brains from harmful toxins, a Harvard School of Public Health (HSPH) researcher said in a March 18, 2014 online article in The Atlantic.

The primary U.S. law regulating these chemicals is the Toxic Substances Control Act. Since the passage of the law about 40 years ago, more than 20,000 new chemicals have entered the market. Only five have been removed, according to the article.

“We don’t have the luxury to sit back and wait until science figures out what’s really going on, what the mechanisms are, what the doses are, and that sort of thing. We’ve seen with lead and mercury and other poisons that it takes decades (to discover their damaging effects). And during that time we are essentially exposing the next generation to exactly the kind of chemicals that we want to protect them from,” Philippe Grandjean, adjunct professor of environmental health at HSPH, told The Atlantic.

In the article Grandjean discussed a report he co-authored with Philip Landrigan, dean for global health at Mount Sinai School of Medicine, published in February 2014 in Lancet Neurology that raised concerns about a “silent pandemic” of chemical exposure on developing brains in children. The researchers cited 12 chemicals—including pesticides and chemicals found in everyday objects like furniture and clothing—that they believe contribute to ADHD, autism, and other such conditions.

http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/news/hsph-in-the-news/federal-regulations-on-chemicals-in-environment-need-overhaul/

Anti-GMO protesters rally against Monsanto

Ontario beekeepers filled a coffin with thousands of bees in front of a large rally of protesters in Queen's Park Sunday in protest of GMO giant Monsanto.

The third March Against Monsanto Toronto boasted thousands of Torontonians voicing their concerns about genetically modified seeds and calling for a permanent boycott of harmful agricultural chemicals.

Genetically modified seeds are engineered to resist insects and herbicides, add nutritional benefits or otherwise improve crops and increase the global food supply.

The dead bees were taken from farms where they died over the winter. Their deaths have been linked to the use of agricultural neonicotinoid pesticides which coats most corn and soy seeds.

The march, entitled "Requiem for Bees," had pallbearers in beekeeping suits marching through areas of downtown as well as expert speakers and a GMO-free festival and farmers market in Christie Pits park. The beekeepers called for Montsanto and its subsidiaries and allied companies to stop producing GMOs and neonicotinoids.

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/toronto/anti-gmo-protesters-rally-against-monsanto-1.2653350

Monarch butterfly decline linked to spread of GM crops

The main cause of the monarch butterfly's decline is the loss of milkweed — its food — in its U.S. breeding grounds, a new study has found. That all but confirms that the spread of genetically modified crops is indirectly killing the monarch.

This past winter, the number of monarch butterflies wintering in Mexico fell to its lowest since 1993, when records first started being kept, the World Wildlife Fund and Mexico's Environment Department reported in January. That report blamed the loss of milkweed owing to genetically modified crops and urban sprawl in the U.S. and illegal logging in the butterflies' Mexican wintering ground.

Monarch migration said to be in trouble as numbers fall
Now, an analysis combining all the known data about monarch populations and the factors that influence them shows that the monarch's biggest threat is in the U.S., not Mexico.

The leaves of the milkweed plant are the only place that monarchs lay their eggs and the only food that monarch butterfly caterpillars will eat. A large proportion of monarchs east of the Rocky Mountains breed in the U.S. corn belt, stretching from Kansas in the west to Ohio in the east, and south to north from Missouri to North Dakota.

http://www.cbc.ca/news/technology/monarch-butterfly-decline-linked-to-spread-of-gm-crops-1.2665131

Horizontal Transfer of GM DNA Widespread But No One is Looking, Almost

The first genetically modified (GM) crop was commercially approved and released into the environment 20 years ago. From the beginning, some of us have been warning repeatedly of hidden dangers from the unintended horizontal transfer of GM DNA (transgenes). A comprehensive review Gene Technology and Gene Ecology of Infectious Diseases, ISIS scientific publication) and successive updates were submitted to the World Health Organization (WHO) and regulatory agencies in the US, UK and European Union (see Ban GMOs Now, ISIS Report); all to no avail.

The position taken by regulators and their scientific advisors today is perhaps best represented in a recent publication with lead author Kaare Nielson at Norwegian University of Science and Technology, who both advises Genøk-Centre for Biosafety and serves as member of the EFSA (European Food Safety Authority) GMO panel.

The paper, entitled “Detecting rare gene transfer events in bacterial populations”, recognizes that horizontal gene transfer is part of the risk assessment for GMOs, and that the large-scale cultivation of GM-plants on more than 170 m ha worldwide results in “multitudinous opportunities for bacterial exposure to recombinant DNA and therefore opportunities for unintended horizontal dissemination of transgenes.” It admits that horizontal gene transfer has indeed been demonstrated in the laboratory. “But in natural settings, negative or inconclusive evidence has been reported from most sampling-based studies of agricultural soils, runoff water and gastrointestinal tract contents.”

It tells us that horizontal gene transfer research “suffers from significant methodological limitations, model uncertainty and knowledge gaps.” In particular, on account of the “low mechanistic probability of horizontal transfer...in complex environments”, it would take “months, years, or even longer for the few initially transformed cells to divide and numerically out-compete non-transformed members of the population” for them to be “detectable.” The rest of the paper mentions a mathematical model based on those very assumptions, the most important being the very low probability of horizontal transfer; which has been contradicted by empirical evidence, most decisively from a study in China reported in 2012 .

http://www.i-sis.org.uk/Horizontal_Transfer_of_GM_DNA_Widespread.php

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60 Countries are already aware that GMO's are extremely dangerous to all living things ... and are currently doing something about it

Scientific Studies Proving GMOs Are Unsafe Health Risks

There are a multitude of credible scientific studies that clearly demonstrate why GMOs should not be consumed, and more are emerging every year. There are also a number of scientists all around the world who oppose them.

By slipping it into our food without our knowledge, without any indication that there are genetically modified organisms in our food, we are now unwittingly part of a massive experiment.The FDA has said that genetically modified organisms are not much different from regular food, so they’ll be treated in the same way. The problem is this, geneticists follow the inheritance of genes, what biotechnology allows us to do is to take this organism, and move it horizontally into a totally unrelated species. Now David Suzuki doesn’t normally mate with a carrot and exchange genes, what biotechnology allows us to do is to switch genes from one to the other without regard to the biological constraints. It’s very very bad science, we assume that the principals governing the inheritance of genes vertically, applies when you move genes laterally or horizontally. There’s absolutely no reason to make that conclusion – Geneticist David Suzuki

If anybody ever tells you that we know with one hundred percent certainty that GMOs are totally safe to eat, they haven’t done their research. There is no reason GM foods should be approved safe for consumption, we just don’t know enough about them. We could easily feed the planet through organic, GMO-free methods, so there is absolutely no reason we need GM foods around.

Below I’ve presented just a bit of information to get you started on your research.

http://usnewsghost.wordpress.com/2014/04/20/scientific-studies-proving-gmos-are-unsafe-health-risks/

60 Countries around the World but not California ?

(Reuters) - (This May 28 story was corrected in the seventh paragraph to delete erroneous reference to a genetically modified wheat)

California lawmakers on Wednesday rejected a bill that would require labels on foods made with genetically modified organisms (GMOs), the second time in two years such legislation has failed to take hold in the state.

Proponents of the bill had sought to make California the second state in the country after Vermont to require GMO labeling, but the measure failed to pass the state Senate by two votes.

Democratic Senator Noreen Evans, the bill's author, was planning to push a reconsideration vote on Thursday before the end of the legislative session.

The bill would require all distributors who sell food in California to label the product if any of the ingredients have been genetically engineered. The labeling law would exclude alcohol and food sold at farmers markets.

http://www.newsdaily.com/article/272513f388fa9de0148c3a3fa123f09a/california-lawmakers-reject-bill-requiring-labeling-on-gmo-foods

Monsanto’s Roundup Found in 75% of Air and Rain Samples

Roundup herbicide, Monsanto’s flagship weed killer, was present in 75 percent of air and rainfall test samples, according to the study, which focused on Mississippi’s highly fertile Delta agricultural region.

GreenMedInfo reports new research, soon to be published by Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry journal, discovered the traces over a 12-year span from 1995-2007.

In recent years, Roundup was found to be even more toxic than it was when first approved for agricultural use, though that discovery has not led to any changes in regulation of the pesticide. Moreover, Roundup’s overuse has enabled weeds and insects to build an immunity to its harsh toxins.

To deal with the immunity issue, Monsanto’s solution has been to spray more and stronger pesticides to eliminate the problem.

The health effects of Roundup are also hard to ignore as research has linked exposure to the pesticide to Parkinson’s disease and various cancers.

http://ecowatch.com/2014/02/27/monsantos-roundup-found-in-75-of-air-and-rain-samples/
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