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By Mark Schlueb, Orlando Sentinel

7:17 p.m. EDT, June 8, 2011

Orlando police arrested five more activists from behind a makeshift buffet table at Lake Eola Park on Wednesday evening, bringing to a dozen the number charged in the past week with violating city restrictions on feeding the homeless.

The members of the group Food Not Bombs were ladling out corn on the cob, rice, beans and watermelon to about 35 people when they were handcuffed. About two dozen activists and homeless people booed and chanted “Food is a right, not a privilege” as they were loaded into a waiting police van.

They were violating a controversial city ordinance that prohibits sharing food with large groups in a downtown city park more than twice a year. Food Not Bombs has been fighting the ordinance but lost a legal appeal in April, clearing the way for the city to begin enforcement.

The five arrested — Nick Emery, Tommy Frain, Thomas Hellinger, Kyle Trailies and Fischer Williams — ranged in age from 17 to 27.

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Forensic evidence emerges that European e.coli superbug was bioengineered to produce human fatalities

(NaturalNews) Even as the veggie blame game is now under way across the EU, where a super resistant strain of e.coli is sickening patients and filling hospitals in Germany, virtually no one is talking about how e.coli could have magically become resistant to eight different classes of antibiotic drugs and then suddenly appeared in the food supply.

This particular e.coli variation is a member of the O104 strain, and O104 strains are almost never (normally) resistant to antibiotics. In order for them to acquire this resistance, they must be repeatedly exposed to antibiotics in order to provide the “mutation pressure” that nudges them toward complete drug immunity.

So if you’re curious about the origins of such a strain, you can essentially reverse engineer the genetic code of the e.coli and determine fairly accurately which antibiotics it was exposed to during its development. This step has now been done (see below), and when you look at the genetic decoding of this O104 strain now threatening food consumers across the EU, a fascinating picture emerges of how it must have come into existence.

The genetic code reveals the history

When scientists at Germany’s Robert Koch Institute decoded the genetic makeup of the O104 strain, they found it to be resistant to all the following classes and combinations of antibiotics:

• penicillins
• tetracycline
• nalidixic acid
• trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazol
• cephalosporins
• amoxicillin / clavulanic acid
• piperacillin-sulbactam
• piperacillin-tazobactam

In addition, this O104 strain posses an ability to produce special enzymes that give it what might be called “bacteria superpowers” known technically as ESBLs:

“Extended-Spectrum Beta-Lactamases (ESBLs) are enzymes that can be produced by bacteria making them resistant to cephalosporins e.g. cefuroxime, cefotaxime and ceftazidime – which are the most widely used antibiotics in many hospitals,” explains the Health Protection Agency in the UK (http://www.hpa.org.uk/Topics/Infect…).

On top of that, this O104 strain possesses two genes — TEM-1 and CTX-M-15 — that “have been making doctors shudder since the 1990s,” reports The Guardian (http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentis…). And why do they make doctors shudder? Because they’re so deadly that many people infected with such bacteria experience critical organ failure and simply die.

Bioengineering a deadly superbug

So how, exactly, does a bacterial strain come into existence that’s resistant to over a dozen antibiotics in eight different drug classes and features two deadly gene mutations plus ESBL enzyme capabilities?

There’s really only one way this happens (and only one way) — you have to expose this strain of e.coli to all eight classes of antibiotics drugs. Usually this isn’t done at the same time, of course: You first expose it to penicillin and find the surviving colonies which are resistant to penicillin. You then take those surviving colonies and expose them to tetracycline. The surviving colonies are now resistant to both penicillin and tetracycline. You then expose them to a sulfa drug and collect the surviving colonies from that, and so on. It is a process of genetic selection done in a laboratory with a desired outcome. This is essentially how some bioweapons are engineered by the U.S. Army in its laboratory facility in Ft. Detrick, Maryland (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nation…).

Although the actual process is more complicated than this, the upshot is that creating a strain of e.coli that’s resistant to eight classes of antibiotics requires repeated, sustained expose to those antibiotics. It is virtually impossible to imagine how this could happen all by itself in the natural world. For example, if this bacteria originated in the food (as we’ve been told), then where did it acquire all this antibiotic resistance given the fact that antibiotics are not used in vegetables?

When considering the genetic evidence that now confronts us, it is difficult to imagine how this could happen “in the wild.” While resistance to a single antibiotic is common, the creation of a strain of e.coli that’s resistant to eight different classes of antibiotics — in combination — simply defies the laws of genetic permutation and combination in the wild. Simply put, this superbug e.coli strain could not have been created in the wild. And that leaves only one explanation for where it really came from: the lab.

Engineered and then released into the wild

The evidence now points to this deadly strain of e.coli being engineered and then either being released into the food supply or somehow escaping from a lab and entering the food supply inadvertently. If you disagree with that conclusion — and you’re certainly welcome to — then you are forced to conclude that this octobiotic superbug (immune to eight classes of antibiotics) developed randomly on its own… and that conclusion is far scarier than the “bioengineered” explanation because it means octobiotic superbugs can simply appear anywhere at any time without cause. That would be quite an exotic theory indeed.

My conclusion actually makes more sense: This strain of e.coli was almost certainly engineered and then released into the food supply for a specific purpose. What would that purpose be? It’s obvious, I hope.

It’s all problem, reaction, solution at work here. First cause a PROBLEM (a deadly strain of e.coli in the food supply). Then wait for the public REACTION (huge outcry as the population is terrorized by e.coli). In response to that, enact your desired SOLUTION (total control over the global food supply and the outlawing of raw sprouts, raw milk and raw vegetables).

That’s what this is all about, of course. The FDA relied on the same phenomenon in the USA when pushing for its recent “Food Safety Modernization Act” which essentially outlaws small family organic farms unless they lick the boots of FDA regulators. The FDA was able to crush farm freedom in America by piggybacking on the widespread fear that followed e.coli outbreaks in the U.S. food supply. When people are afraid, remember, it’s not difficult to get them to agree to almost any level of regulatory tyranny. And making people afraid of their food is a simple matter… a few government press releases emailed to the mainstream media news affiliates is all it takes.

First ban the natural medicine, then attack the food supply

Now, remember: All this is happening on the heels of the EU ban on medicinal herbs and nutritional supplements — a ban that blatantly outlaws nutritional therapies that help keep people healthy and free from disease. Now that all these herbs and supplements are outlawed, the next step is to make people afraid of fresh food, too. That’s because fresh vegetables are medicinal, and as long as the public has the right to buy fresh vegetables, they can always prevent disease.

But if you can make people AFRAID of fresh vegetables — or even outlaw them altogether — then you can force the entire population onto a diet of dead foods and processed foods that promote degenerative disease and bolster the profits of the powerful drug companies.

It’s all part of the same agenda, you see: Keep people sick, deny them access to healing herbs and supplements, then profit from their suffering at the hands of the global drug cartels.

GMOs play a similar role in all this, of course: They’re designed to contaminate the food supply with genetic code that causes widespread infertility among human beings. And those who are somehow able to reproduce after exposure to GMOs still suffer from degenerative disease that enriches the drug companies from “treatment.”

Do you recall which country was targeted in this recent e.coli scare? Spain. Why Spain? You may recall that leaked cables from Wikileaks revealed that Spain resisted the introduction of GMOs into its agricultural system, even as the U.S. government covertly threatened political retaliation for its resistance. This false blaming of Spain for the e.coli deaths is probably retaliation for Spain’s unwillingness to jump on the GMO bandwagon. (http://www.naturalnews.com/030828_G…)

That’s the real story behind the economic devastation of Spain’s vegetable farmers. It’s one of the subplots being pursued alongside this e.coli superbug scheme.

Food as weapons of war – created by Big Pharma?

By the way, the most likely explanation of where this strain of e.coli was bioengineered is that the drug giants came up with it in their own labs. Who else has access to all the antibiotics and equipment needed to manage the targeted mutations of potentially thousands of e.coli colonies? The drug companies are uniquely positioned to both carry out this plot and profit from it. In other words, they have the means and the motive to engage in precisely such actions.

Aside from the drug companies, perhaps only the infectious disease regulators themselves have this kind of laboratory capacity. The CDC, for example, could probably pull this off if they really wanted to.

The proof that somebody bioengineered this e.coli strain is written right in the DNA of the bacteria. That’s forensic evidence, and what it reveals cannot be denied. This strain underwent repeated and prolonged exposure to eight different classes of antibiotics, and then it somehow managed to appear in the food supply. How do you get to that if not through a well-planned scheme carried out by rogue scientists? There is no such thing as “spontaneous mutation” into a strain that is resistant to the top eight classes of brand-name antibiotic drugs being sold by Big Pharma today. Such mutations have to be deliberate.

Once again, if you disagree with this assessment, then what you’re saying is that NO, it wasn’t done deliberately… it happened accidentally! And again, I’m saying that’s even scarier! Because that means the antibiotic contamination of our world is now at such an extreme level of overkill that a strain of e.coli in the wild can be saturated with eight different classes of antibiotics to the point where it naturally develops into its own deadly superbug. If that’s what people believe, then that’s almost a scarier theory than the bioengineering explanation!

A new era has begun: Bioweapons in your food

But in either case — no matter what you believe — the simple truth is that the world is now facing a new era of global superbug strains of bacteria that can’t be treated with any known pharmaceutical. They can all, of course, be readily killed with colloidal silver, which is exactly why the FDA and world health regulators have viciously attacked colloidal silver companies all these years: They can’t have the public getting its hands on natural antibiotics that really work, you see. That would defeat the whole purpose of making everybody sick in the first place.

In fact, these strains of e.coli superbugs can be quite readily treated with a combination of natural full-spectrum antibiotics from plants such as garlic, ginger, onions and medicinal herbs. On top of that, probiotics can help balance the flora of the digestive tract and “crowd out” the deadly e.coli that might happen by. A healthy immune system and well-functioning digestive tract can fight off an e.coli superbug infection, but that’s yet another fact the medical community doesn’t want you to know. They much prefer you to remain a helpless victim lying in the hospital, waiting to die, with no options available to you. That’s “modern medicine” for ya. They cause the problems that they claim to treat, and then they won’t even treat you with anything that works in the first place.

Nearly all the deaths now attributable to this e.coli outbreak are easily and readily avoidable. These are deaths of ignorance. But even more, they may also be deaths from a new era of food-based bioweapons unleashed by either a group of mad scientists or an agenda-driven institution that has declared war on the human population.

Additional developments on this e.coli outbreak

• 22 fatalities have so far been reported, with 2,153 people now sickened and possibly facing kidney failure.

• An agricultural ministry in Germany said that even though they now know the source of the outbreak is a German sprout farm, they are still not lifting their warnings for people to avoid eating tomatoes and lettuce. In other words, keep the people afraid!

• “The German variant of E coli, known as O104, is a hybrid of the strains that can cause bloody diarrhoea and kidney damage called ‘hemolytic uremic syndrome’.” (http://www.independent.ie/world-new…)

• A total of ten European nations have reported outbreaks of this e.coli strain, mostly from people who had visited northern Germany.

• The following story is in German, and it hints that the e.coli outbreak might have been a terrorist attack (http://www.aerztezeitung.de/medizin…). Yeah, a terrorist attack by the drug companies upon innocent people, as usual…

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From Wall Street Journal

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704657304575539872944767984.html

Imagine if a leader within the tea party movement were able to persuade its members to establish a third political party. Imagine he succeeded—overwhelmingly—and that as their leader he stood a real chance of winning the presidency. Then imagine that in anticipation of his electoral victory, the Democrats and Republicans quickly modified an existing antidiscrimination law so that he could be convicted for statements he made on the campaign trail.

All of this seems impossible in a 21st-century liberal democracy. But it is exactly what is happening in Holland to Dutch parliamentarian Geert Wilders.

Mr. Wilders came onto the political scene in September 2004 when he broke from the Liberal Party to found the Freedom Party. He did this partly as a response to Turkey’s bid to join the European Union, and also in reaction to the rise of political Islam in the Netherlands.

No one has ever accused Mr. Wilders of being diplomatic. He’s famously compared the Quran to “Mein Kampf” and described it as a “fascist book,” he’s called Muhammad “the devil,” and he’s proposed policies—such as banning the construction of mosques and taxing women who wear the burqa—to halt further Islamification.

A

t first, Mr. Wilders was dismissed as a far right-wing extremist. But since splitting from the Liberal Party six years ago, his star has only risen. In the national elections held in November 2006, his party won nine seats in parliament. When the Dutch government fell again this year, June elections saw his party take 24 seats in the 150-seat body.

This has spooked Dutch parliamentarians, particularly those wedded to multiculturalism. That’s why, in the fall of 2009, they modified Article 137C and 137D of the Penal Code to make it possible for far-left organizations to take Mr. Wilders to court on grounds of “inciting hatred” against Muslims.

Article 137C of the penal code now states that anyone “who publicly, verbally or in writing or image, deliberately expresses himself in anyway insulting of a group of people because of their race, their religion or belief . . . will be punished with a prison sentence of at the most one year or a fine of third category.” It continues: “If the offense is committed by a person who makes it his profession or habit, or by two or more people in association, a prison sentence of at the most two years or a fine of fourth category will be imposed.”

And so since Oct. 4, Mr. Wilders has filed into court to defend himself in this blasphemy trial. If he loses—and the chances are high, given that the presiding judges haven’t been subtle about their bias against him—he will face fines or time in jail. (When Mr. Wilders said he would not speak at the trial, Judge Jan Moors accused him of being “good at making statements, but then avoiding the discussion” they provoke.)

How is it possible that a mature European liberal democracy is prosecuting an elected member of parliament for his political opinions on the most pressing issue of the day—namely, Islamic fundamentalism? There are three main reasons.

First, there is the matter of traditional politicians’ discomfort with Mr. Wilders. Historically, the Netherlands has insisted on the idea of “consensus.” Though on paper this means compromise, in practice it has meant conformity of thought and a refusal to rock the boat on controversial issues.

No issue has tested this comfortable consensus more than the ascent of Islam, first presented by immigrants from Morocco and Turkey in the 1960s and 1970s, and then by asylum-seekers and refugees from various Muslim countries beginning in the 1990s. Most elites responded by preaching “tolerance.” Give Muslim immigrants benefits and wait until they voluntarily integrate, their argument goes. Even if that process would take generations—even when it became apparent that some Muslims practiced female genital mutilation and honor killings, and imams openly urged their congregations to reject Dutch culture and law—citizens were not to criticize Islam.

A growing segment of the population—including Mr. Wilders and me, when I was a member of parliament from 2003 to 2006—doubted this facile and dangerous idea of “tolerance.” This upset politicians, professors, journalists and other opinion-makers who tried to make us untouchables.

There were exceptions: Brave people in media, business and even in the military supported me politically, often behind the scenes. Still, I eventually left the country due to a combination of frustration with the campaign of ostracism and the extreme threats I faced from Islamists who wanted to kill me. Mr. Wilders, however, endured.

The second reason Mr. Wilders is on trial is the electoral power of Muslims in the Netherlands’ four major cities. During local elections in March 2006, Muslim immigrants for the first time acted as an unofficial power bloc that could make or break a major Dutch party.

The supposed victims of Dutch discrimination were now a force to reckon with. Thus, major parties including Labor and the Christian Democrats—dominant since World War II—now support policies like increased immigration from Muslim countries and welfare benefits for Muslim voters. And they turn a blind eye to the implementation of informal Shariah law, particularly concerning the treatment of women.

Third, there are the efforts of countries in the Organization of the Islamic Conference to silence the European debate about Islam. One strategy used by the 57 OIC countries is to treat Muslim immigrants to Europe as satellite communities by establishing Muslim cultural organizations, mosques and Islamic centers, and by insisting on dual citizenship. Their other strategy is to pressure international organizations and the European Union to adopt resolutions to punish anyone who engages in “hate speech” against religion. The bill used to prosecute Mr. Wilders is the national version of what OIC diplomats peddle at the U.N. and EU.

The implications of this trial are enormous. In the short term, it could bring the simmering tensions between Holland’s approximately one million Muslims and the 1.4 million voters who elected Mr. Wilders to a boil. The Netherlands has seen its share of Islamist violence before and could well see violent confrontations again.

On a more fundamental level, this trial—even if Mr. Wilders wins—could silence the brave critics of radical Islam. The West is in a war of ideas against political Islam. If free speech is not protected in Europe, we’re already losing.

Ms. Ali, a former member of the Dutch parliament, is a resident fellow at the American Enterprise Institute and the author of “Nomad: From Islam to America—A Personal Journey through the Clash of Civilizations” (Free Press, 2010).

 

From Reason Mag

http://reason.com/blog/2009/01/30/limiting-free-speech-in-hollan

Limiting Free Speech in Holland

| January 30, 2009

A muddled piece from Ian Buruma in today’s The New York Times, arguing, as far as I can make out, that anti-Islam Dutch parliamentarian Geert Wilders, recently charged with incitement after comparing the Koran to Mein Kampf, should not be defended because he is a boorish racist who doesn’t himself believe in free speech. And while Buruma, a Dutch citizen, rightfully criticizes the hypocrisies of Wilders (as I did here and here), he spends little time debating the morality and efficacy of the statutes under which he is being charged. As Buruma points out, Dutch law forbids speech that “deliberately insults people on the grounds of their race, religion, beliefs or sexual orientation.” (The race, religion, and sexual orientation stuff is pretty standard in European hate crime law, but I was unaware that in the Netherlands it’s apparently against the law to “insult” someone’s “beliefs.”)

Comparing a book that billions hold sacred to Hitler’s murderous tract is more than an exercise in literary criticism; it suggests that those who believe in the Koran are like Nazis, and an all-out war against them would be justified. This kind of thinking, presumably, is what the Dutch law court is seeking to check.

One of the misconceptions that muddle the West’s debate over Islam and free speech is the idea that people should be totally free to insult. Free speech is never that absolute. Even – or perhaps especially – in America, where citizens are protected by the First Amendment, there are certain words and opinions that no civilized person would utter, and others that open the speaker to civil charges.

This does not mean that religious beliefs should be above criticism. And sometimes criticism will be taken as an insult where none is intended. In that case the critic should get the benefit of the doubt. Likening the Koran to “Mein Kampf” would not seem to fall into that category.

If Mr. Wilders were to confine his remarks to those Muslims who do harm freedom of speech by using violence against critics and apostates, he would have a valid point.

So it is a “misconception” that “people should be totally free to insult?” Well why not, in a few brief sentences, explain just how a democratic country should establish limits on free expression? But instead, Buruma ends his piece with a typically mealy-mouthed declaration that he’s “not so sure” that the charges against Wilders strike a blow for democracy, though he is clearly less concerned with the European compulsion to prosecute thought criminals than he is with the potential elevation of Wilders to martyr status.

Buruma, who last year called Ayaan Hirsi Ali an “enlightenment fundamentalist,” wants us to know that he believes in freedom, largely disagrees with the prosecution of Wilders (though he doesn’t register any objection to the Dutch hate crimes law), and thinks that the “boundaries” to free expression are trespassed when a minority group is judged to have been offended. In other words, it’s unclear just what he believes (other than his reading of Wilders as an Islamophobic troglodyte).

If Buruma agrees with Dutch ideas of free speech “boundaries,” he should come out and say it. Instead, he offers a robust denunciation of Wilders’ reductive view of Islam (how brave!) and entirely avoids the question that matters: Where does a democratic country get off dragging controversial politicians before the court?

Bonus quote: Gerard Spong, the lawyer who filed the charges, said that managing to successfully instigate court proceedings against Wilders is his “finest hour.” “The American President Barack Obama said ‘we are free in diversity’ but you can’t have diversity if you brand one group as extremists,” he told reporters.

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From
————
By Muriel Kane
Friday, April 8th, 2011 — 8:21 pm

A year ago, Albert Gonzalez confessed to having led an operation that stole more than 130 million credit and debit card numbers by hacking into computers at TJ Maxx and other retailers and was sentenced to twenty years in prison. Now he wants his conviction overturned on the grounds that the US Secret Service authorized him to do it.

In a habeas corpus petition filed on March 24, Gonzales writes, “I still believe that I was acting on behalf of the United States Secret Service and that I was authorized and directed to engage in the conduct I committed as part of my assignment to gather intelligence and seek out international cybercriminals. … I now know and understand that I have been used as a scapegoat to cover someone’s mistakes.”

(The full petition is available here.)

According to The Register, however, “Gonzalez, 29, who escaped jail time back in 2004 over his involvement in the sale of 1.5 million stolen credit and ATM card numbers while a member of the Shadowcrew group by ratting out his erstwhile partners in cybercrime, went on to bigger and better things. While supposedly working for the Secret Service, he acted as ringleader in a massive credit card theft and laundering operation involving an estimated 170 million credit cards between around July 2005 and his arrest in May 2008.”

Gonzalez himself claims that the Secret Service “treated me like one of their own” and that he was even invited to brief the government agents on malware and other security vulnerabilities. “All of this inflated my ego and made me feel very important and made me feel like I was really a part of the Secret Service with the backing and support of the Government Agency,” he writes. “One day I was unknown and nothing and the next day I am being hailed as a genius.”

Gonzalez alleges that everything he did was controlled by the Secret Service and that he expected them to step in after he was arrested by Miami police in 2008 “and take custody of me and squash the charges.” He also says his former lawyers never told him he could use a “Public Authority defense” — arguing that he had government approval to commit his crimes — and that he would not have pleaded guilty if he had known.

One of those lawyers, Rene Palomino, disputes this claim, insisting, “He was given the opportunity of a lifetime to work for the Secret Service. He chose to become a criminal, bottom line, and become a double agent working both sides — the criminal side and the legal side.”

The Register largely agrees, writing that “the petition provides a fascinating insight into the life of a cybercrime informant and cites example that would support the contention that Secret Service informants turned a blind eye to some low-level scams carried out by Gonzalez. … It’s a much bigger stretch, however, to come away with the conclusion that the Secret Service had granted Gonzalez carte blanche to carry out the biggest cybercrime operation ever uncovered.”

Adding an additional twist to the story, Gonzales claims that his lawyers failed to file a motion to suppress evidence obtained from a Ukrainian vendor of stolen card data who was allegedly tortured by Turkish officials to obtain access to data on his computer which implicated Gonzalez.

Palomino says he was unable to do anything because Gonzalez’s parents didn’t have the money to pay for him to fly to Turkey to investigate the matter. He also insists, “We researched the issue regarding the evidence, and there were no grounds for suppression.”

Image from the US Secret Service, courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.

From

http://www.responsibletechnology.org/blog/1340

Jeffrey Smith The world’s leading consumer advocate promoting healthier, non-GMO choices Posted on 10:55 am April 7, 2011

GMOs Linked to Organ Disruption in 19 Studies

A new paper shows that consuming genetically modified (GM) corn or soybeans leads to significant organ disruptions in rats and mice, particularly in livers and kidneys. By reviewing data from 19 animal studies, Professor Gilles-Eric Séralini and others reveal that 9% of the measured parameters, including blood and urine biochemistry, organ weights, and microscopic analyses (histopathology), were significantly disrupted in the GM-fed animals. The kidneys of males fared the worst, with 43.5% of all the changes. The liver of females followed, with 30.8%. The report, published in Environmental Sciences Europe on March 1, 2011, confirms that “several convergent data appear to indicate liver and kidney problems as end points of GMO diet effects.” The authors point out that livers and kidneys “are the major reactive organs” in cases of chronic food toxicity.

“Other organs may be affected too, such as the heart and spleen, or blood cells,” stated the paper. In fact some of the animals fed genetically modified organisms had altered body weights in at least one gender, which is “a very good predictor of side effects in various organs.”

The GM soybean and corn varieties used in the feeding trials “constitute 83% of the commercialized GMOs” that are currently consumed by billions of people. While the findings may have serious ramifications for the human population, the authors demonstrate how a multitude of GMO-related health problems could easily pass undetected through the superficial and largely incompetent safety assessments that are used around the world.

Feed’em longer!

One of the most glaring faults in the current regulatory regime is the short duration of animals feeding studies. The industry limits trials to 90 days at most, with some less than a month. Only two studies reviewed in this new publication were over 90 days—both were non-industry research.

Short studies could easily miss many serious effects of GMOs. It is well established that some pesticides and drugs, for example, can create effects that are passed on through generations, only showing up decades later. IN the case of the drug DES (diethylstilbestrol), “induced female genital cancers among other problems in the second generation.” The authors urge regulators to require long-term multi-generational studies, to “provide evidence of carcinogenic, developmental, hormonal, neural, and reproductive potential dysfunctions, as it does for pesticides or drugs.”

Pesticide Plants”

Nearly all GM crops are described as “pesticide plants.” They either tolerate doses of weed killer, such as Roundup, or produce an insecticide called Bt-toxin. In both cases, the added toxin—weedkiller or bug killer—is found inside the corn or soybeans we consume.

When regulators evaluate the toxic effects of pesticides, they typically require studies using three types of animals, with at least one feeding trial lasting 2 years or more. One third or more of the side effects produced by these toxins will show up only in the longer study—not the shorter ones. But for no good reason, regulators ignore the lessons learned from pesticides and waive the GM crops-containing-pesticides onto the market with a single species tested for just 90 days. The authors affirm that “it is impossible, within only 13 weeks, to conclude about the kind of pathology that could be induced by pesticide GMOs and whether it is a major pathology or a minor one. It is therefore necessary to prolong the tests.”

GMO approvals also ignore the new understanding that toxins don’t always follow a linear dose-response. Sometimes a smaller amount of toxins have greater impact than larger doses. Approvals also overlook the fact that mixtures can be far more dangerous than single chemicals acting alone. Roundup residues, for example, have been “shown to be toxic for human placental, embryonic, and umbilical cord cells,” whereas Roundup’s active ingredient glyphosate does not on its own provoke the same degree of damage. One reason for this is that the chemicals in Roundup “stabilize glyphosate and allow its penetration into cells.”

Furthermore, toxins may generate new substances (metabolites) “either in the GM plant or in the animals fed with it.” Current assessments completely ignore the potential danger from these new components in our diets, such as the “new metabolites” in GMOs engineered to withstand Roundup. The authors warn, “We consider this as a major oversight in the present regulations.”

It’s not the same stuff that farmers spray

Regulators claim that the Bt-toxin produced inside GM corn is safe. They say that the Bt gene comes from soil bacteria Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt), which has been safely applied as a spray-on insecticide by farmers in the past. But the authors insist that “the argument about ‘safe use history’ of the wild Bt protein . . . cannot, on a sound scientific basis, be used for direct authorizations of . . . GM corns,” without conducting proper long-term animal feeding studies.

In order to justify their claim that the wild Bt-toxin is safe, the authors state that it must first be separately tested on animals and humans and then authorized individually for food or feed, which it has not. And even if the wild variety had been confirmed as safe, the GM versions are so different, they must require their own independent studies. The paper states:

“The Bt toxins in GMOs are new and modified, truncated, or chimerical in order to change their activities/solubility in comparison to wild Bt. For instance, there is at least a 40% difference between the toxin in Bt176 [corn] and its wild counterpart.”

Even though the isolated Bt-toxin from GM corn has not been tested on animals, rodent studies on corn containing the toxin do show problems. Male rats fed Monsanto’s MON863 corn, for example, had smaller kidneys with more focal inflammation and other “disrupted biochemical markers typical of kidney filtration or function problems.”

Stop with the dumb excuses

If statistically significant problems show up in their studies, biotech company researchers often attempt to explain away the adverse findings. But the authors of this review paper describe their excuses as unscientific, obsolete, or unjustified.

When male and female animals have different results, for example, biotech advocates claim that this couldn’t possibly be related to the feed. Since both genders eat the same amount, they argue, both would have to show the same reaction in all of their organs, etc. And if the group of animals fed with less of the GMO feed exhibit more severe reactions than the group fed the larger amount, advocates claim that this discrepancy also means that the GMOs could not be the cause, since there must always be a linear dose relationship.

The authors of this paper, however, point out that effects found in a GMO animal feeding study “cannot be disregarded on the rationale that it is not linear to the dose (or dose-related) or not comparable in genders. This would not be scientifically acceptable.” In fact, most “pathological and endocrine effects in environmental health are not directly proportional to the dose, and they have a differential threshold of sensitivity in both sexes. This is, for instance, the case with carcinogenesis and endocrine disruption.”

What’s the culprit, pesticide or plant?

The shortcomings of the feeding studies make it impossible to determine whether a particular problem is due to the added pesticide, such as Roundup residues or Bt-toxin, or due to the genetic changes in the modified plants’ DNA.

Mice fed Roundup Ready soybeans, for example, showed numerous changes indicating increased metabolic rates in the liver (i.e. irregular hepatocyte nuclei, more nuclear pores, numerous small fibrillar centers, and abundant dense fibrillar components). Since studies on Roundup herbicide also show changes in the liver cells of mice and humans, the Roundup residues within the soybeans may be a significant contributing factor to the metabolic changes.

Similarly, rats fed Roundup Ready corn showed indications that their kidneys leaked. Such an effect “is well correlated with the effects of glyphosate-based herbicides (like Roundup) observed on embryonic kidney cells.” Thus, the rats’ kidney problems may also be caused by the Roundup that is accumulated within Roundup Ready corn kernels.

In addition to the herbicide, the Bt-toxin insecticide produced inside GM corn might also cause disorders. The authors state, “The insecticide produced by MON810 [corn] could also induce liver reactions, like many other pesticides.” Studies do confirm significant liver changes in rats fed Bt corn.

On the other hand, “unintended effects of the genetic modification itself cannot be excluded” as the possible cause of these very same health problems. The process of gene insertion followed by cloning plant cells (tissue culture) can cause massive collateral damage in the plant’s DNA with potentially harmful side-effects. In MON810 corn, for example, the insertion “caused a complex recombination event, leading to the synthesis of new RNA products encoding unknown proteins.” The authors warn that “genetic modifications can induce global changes” in the DNA, RNA, proteins, and the numerous natural products (metabolites), but the faulty safety assessments are not designed to adequately identify these changes or their health impacts.

Population at risk

In addition to the shortcomings mentioned above, the paper shows how GMO feeding trials are “based on ancient paradigms” with “serious conceptual and methodological flaws,” employ statistical methods that obscure the findings, add irrelevant control groups that confuse and confound the analysis, and rely on numerous assumptions that either remain untested or have already proved false.

Unlike drug approvals, biotech companies do not conduct human studies. They would therefore fail to identify both general human health reactions, and the potentially more serious ones endured by sub-populations. “If some consumers suffer from stomach problems or ulcers,” for example, the paper states, “the new toxins will possibly act differently; the digestion in children could be affected too.” The paper recommends the implementation of post market monitoring, which, among other things, “should be linked with the possibility of detecting allergenicity reactions to GMOs in routine medicine.”

But even if authorities wanted to conduct epidemiological studies on GMOs, the authors acknowledge that they “are not feasible in America, since there is no organized traceability of GMOs anywhere on the continent.” Not only is labeling of GMOs urgently needed to allow such studies to proceed, the study says:

“The traceability of products from animals fed on GMOs is also crucial. The reason for this is because they can develop chronic diseases which are not utterly known today…. Labeling animals fed on GMOs is therefore necessary because some pesticide residues linked to GMOs could pass into the food chain.”

They also point out that “even if pesticides residues or DNA fragments are not toxic nor transmitted by themselves” nevertheless, “nobody would want to eat disabled or physiologically modified animals after long-term GMOs ingestion.”

“New experiments,” they concluded, “should be systematically performed to protect the health of billions of people that could consume directly or indirectly these transformed products.”

In the meantime, for those not willing to wait for the new studies, we recommend consulting the Non-GMO Shopping Guide at www.NonGMOShoppingGuide.com.

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Military wants doctors to “use their position of trust in society” To Promote Global Warming Theories

Military and medical experts call on doctors to use their position of trust in society to build support for action on climate change

From

http://www.blacklistednews.com/?news_id=13406

And The Guardian

http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2011/apr/05/doctors-climate-change-leadership

“Doctors must take a leading role in highlighting the dangers of climate change, which will lead to conflict, disease and ill-health, and threatens global security, according to a stark warning from an unusual alliance of physicians and military leaders. Writing in the British Medical Journal on Tuesday, a group of military and medical experts, including two rear admirals and two professors of health, sent out an urgent message to governments around the world. “Climate change poses an immediate and grave threat, driving ill-health and increasing the risk of conflict, such that each feeds upon the other,” said the authors, Lionel Jarvis, surgeon rear admiral at the UK’s Ministry of Defence; Hugh Montgomery, professor of human health at UCL, London; Neil Morisetti, rear admiral and climate and security envoy for the UK; and Ian Gilmore, professor at the Royal Liverpool hospital. “Like all good medicine, prevention is the key.” The threat to national security and health from global warming have been addressed separately in the past, but the BMJ editorial urges governments to treat them together. “It might be considered unusual for the medical and military professions to concur,” wrote the authors. “But on this subject we do.” The authors urge doctors to use their position of trust in society to build support for action on climate change. “Although discussion is good, we can no longer delay implementing tough action that will make a difference, while quibbling over minor uncertainties in climate modelling. Unlike most recent natural disasters, this one is entirely predictable,” they warned. “Doctors, often seen as authoritative, trusted, and independent by their communities, must make their voices heard in calling for such action.”

Global Warming is BullDokey

from

http://www.blacknews.com/news/black_mother_jailed_sending_kids_white_school101.shtml

By Dr. Boyce Watkins

Black Mother Jailed

Nationwide (January 26, 2011) — An Ohio mother of two was sentenced to 10 days in jail and placed on three years probation after sending her kids to a school district in which they did not live. Kelly Williams-Bolar was sentenced by Judge Patricia Cosgrove on Tuesday and will begin serving her sentence immediately.

The jury deliberated for seven hours and the courtroom was packed as the sentence was handed down. She was convicted on two counts of tampering with court records after registering her two girls as living with Williams Bolar’s father when they actually lived with her. The family lived in the housing projects in Akron, Ohio, and the father’s address was in nearby Copley Township.

Additionally, Williams-Bolar’s father, Edward L. Williams, was charged with a fourth-degree felony of grand theft, in which he and his daughter are charged with defrauding the school system for two years of educational services for their girls. The court determined that sending their children to the wrong school was worth $30,500 in tuition.

When I read about this case, a few thoughts went through my mind. First, it’s clear that the court is trying to make Kelly Williams-Bolar into an example. Even the judge in the case, Patricia Cosgrove, said that her sentence was appropriate ”so that others who think they might defraud the school system perhaps will think twice.”

Secondly, it’s interesting how courts find it convenient to make someone into an example when they happen to be poor and black. I’d love to see how they prosecute wealthy white women who commit the same offense. Oh, I forgot: Most wealthy white women don’t have to send their kids to the schools located near the projects.

Third, I’m not sure why the court is treating this law-abiding mom like a thug who ran into a building with a shotgun and robbed the district of $30,000. Instead, they could simply subtract the amount it costs for her kids to go to the second school from the amount that would be spent for them to attend the first one. I’m sure the difference would still be substantial, since American educational apartheid dictates that schools in poorer neighborhoods are of significantly less quality than other schools. The racial divisions within American schools are nothing less than a blatant and consistent human rights violation and should certainly be treated as such.

A final interesting blow by Judge Cosgrove that reflects the experience of marginalized African Americans in the criminal justice system relates to Williams-Bolar’s quest to obtain a teaching degree. The single mother was in school studying to become a teacher so that she could create a better life for her girls. But that won’t happen for her family now, given that the judge has all but shut the door on her chance to fulfill her dream:

”Because of the felony conviction, you will not be allowed to get your teaching degree under Ohio law as it stands today,” the judge said. ”The court’s taking into consideration that is also a punishment that you will have to serve.”

This case is a textbook example of everything that remains racially wrong with America’s educational, economic and criminal justice systems. Let’s start from the top: Had Ms. Williams-Bolar been white, she likely would never have been prosecuted for this crime in the first place (I’d love for them to show me a white woman in that area who’s gone to jail for the same crime). She also is statistically not as likely to be living in a housing project with the need to break an unjust law in order to create a better life for her daughters. Being black is also correlated with the fact that Williams-Bolar likely didn’t have the resources to hire the kinds of attorneys who could get her out of this mess (since the average black family’s wealth is roughly 1/10 that of white families). Finally, economic inequality is impactful here because that’s the reason that Williams-Bolar’s school district likely has fewer resources than the school she chose for her kids. In other words, black people have been historically robbed of our economic opportunities, leading to a two-tiered reality that we are then imprisoned for attempting to alleviate. That, my friends, is American Racism 101.

This case is also an example of how racial-inequality created during slavery and Jim Crow continues to cripple our nation to this day. There is no logical reason on earth why this mother of two should be dehumanized by going to jail and be left permanently marginalized from future economic and educational opportunities. Even if you believe in the laws that keep poor kids trapped in underperforming schools, the idea that this woman should be sent to jail for demanding educational access is simply ridiculous.

Dr. Boyce Watkins is a social commentator, and a scholar in residence in the entrepreneurship and innovation unit at Syracuse University. Read his blog at http://drboycespeaks.blogspot.com