Genetic Engineering

On the fruit flies dying locally for pure research

Submitted: Jun 23, 2012
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

The posting of this 1933 essay by Peter Wessel Zapffe is dedicated to the idiot at UC Merced performing serial neurosurgery on cadaveres Drosophilarum as lovingly extolled in the McClatchy Chain local outlet, the Sun-Star: "Do flies hold clues to alcoholism; US Merced researchers are seeking answers" http://www.mercedsunstar.com/2012/06/23/2394844/uc-merced-researchers-seek-answers.html

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When laws leave reason too far behind

Submitted: Jun 13, 2012
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

The most reasonable, fundamental principle of ecological awareness is called the "Precautionary Principle," borrwed from medicine: Do no harm. It is one thing to depart from this principle out of ignorance or scofflaw greed; it is another thing to elevate the negation of the Precautionary Principle to the level of federal law.

Badlands Journal editorial board

Wikipedia
Precautionary principle
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Precautionary_principle
The Precautionary Principle illustrated as a decision matrix[neutrality is disputed]The precautionary principle or precautionary approach states that if an action or policy has a suspected risk of causing harm to the public or to the environment, in the absence of scientific consensus that the action or policy is harmful, the burden of proof that it is not harmful falls on those taking the action.

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The "greatest public higher education research institution in the world" is a corporate shill?

Submitted: Jun 09, 2012
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

Not quite. It's worse than that. Yes, the department at UC Berekeley from which the propaganda issues is a willing shill for any corporate grant, but emphasis should be placed on the "willing." This crap is coming out of the department of ag economics, A.P. Giannini Hall, the kitchen in which all the finest dishes of agribusiness ideology and propaganda are prepared and have been since the founder of Bank of America endowed the building, back in the day when BofA depended on agribusiness and vice versa. But these hacks don't even do the science, the gene-splitting, anymore than they do the science of economics. "Growth through more UC-sponsored science and technology" is the alpha and omega of their belief system. And it pays. It has paid UC so well that it has rotted the core of academic and intellectual respectability, even in Berkeley of all places.

But it is the unreflective BELIEF in any and all technology that the redoubtable Thomas nails, pointing out in passing something familiar to anyone who has ever trod the halls of Giannini -- that the professors that hang their bicycles on their walls in that building have at last become -- due to the steady erosion of the quality of the environment in which agribusiness does its business and the erosion of food quality -- a direct threat to public health. 

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GMO labeling campaign in Davis

Submitted: Mar 22, 2012
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

3-22-12

Genetic Engineering News List

Proposed ballot initiative and anti-Monsanto rally puts bioengineered foods in the crosshairs

By Jean Walker
http://www.newsreview.com/sacramento/gmo-wars/content?oid=5513229


Fortune 500 corporation Monsanto shut down its local operations last week as protesters, holding signs and taking turns on a handheld megaphone, demanded that genetically modified foods to be labeled as such-if not banned outright.

The Davis rally was in solidarity with a grassroots attempt to shut down Monsanto offices across the globe. Locally, it worked: After catching wind of the planned demonstration, Monsanto employees were directed to avoid work on Friday.

And if the two-day rally is any indicator of a greater phenomenon, as activist Pamm Larry suggested, it's that there's an increasing awareness in the country about food production and safety.

Larry leads hundreds of volunteers across the state in collecting 800,000 signatures before April 22 to qualify the California Right to Know Genetically Engineered Food Act initiative for this fall's ballot.

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GMO labeling campaign in Davis

Submitted: Mar 22, 2012
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

3-22-12

Genetic Engineering News List

Proposed ballot initiative and anti-Monsanto rally puts bioengineered foods in the crosshairs

By Jean Walker
http://www.newsreview.com/sacramento/gmo-wars/content?oid=5513229


Fortune 500 corporation Monsanto shut down its local operations last week as protesters, holding signs and taking turns on a handheld megaphone, demanded that genetically modified foods to be labeled as such-if not banned outright.

The Davis rally was in solidarity with a grassroots attempt to shut down Monsanto offices across the globe. Locally, it worked: After catching wind of the planned demonstration, Monsanto employees were directed to avoid work on Friday.

And if the two-day rally is any indicator of a greater phenomenon, as activist Pamm Larry suggested, it's that there's an increasing awareness in the country about food production and safety.

Larry leads hundreds of volunteers across the state in collecting 800,000 signatures before April 22 to qualify the California Right to Know Genetically Engineered Food Act initiative for this fall's ballot.

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California's problem is the direction of its economy, not the quantity of its natural resources

Submitted: Feb 15, 2012
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

 

2-15-12

San Francisco Chronicle

Study: Sierra snowfall conssitent over 130 years

Peter Fimrite

http://sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi f=/c/a/2012/02/15/BA8N1N7HNQ.DTL

Snowfall in the Sierra Nevada has remained consistent for 130 years, with no evidence that anything has changed as a result of climate change, according to a study released Tuesday.

The analysis of snowfall data in the Sierra going back to 1878 found no more or less snow overall - a result that, on the surface, appears to contradict aspects of recent climate change models.

John Christy, the Alabama state climatologist who authored the study, said the amount of snow in the mountains has not decreased in the past 50 years, a period when greenhouse gases were supposed to have increased the effects of global warming.

The heaping piles of snow that fell in the Sierra last winter and the paltry amounts this year fall within the realm of normal weather variability, he concluded.

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Lest we forget the disaster unfolding beyond city limits

Submitted: Feb 12, 2012
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

As the days grow unseasonably warm and buds begin to swell on early blooming trees, our thoughts and dreams of gain turn to the noble almond tree, of which we grow the largest amount in -- let us not be modest -- the universe, because they produce a nut universally admired for any and all nutritional health benefits agrascience has not yet been able to engineer out it. And, our thoughts turning to the Great Nut, a small cloud passes over our revery and lines appear even on the clean, clear childlike brows of our various Almong queens, because the Great Nut must be pollinated by bees. In fact our area attracts more commercially raised and transported bees than any other place on the -- let us not be modest about this either -- the planet.

And bees are in a helluva lot of trouble. Which means that we are too. And since beekeepers first noticed the problem five years ago, the great scientists of the greatest public research university in the -- let's not stop now -- the galaxy, have found no solution to the problem they had so much to do with creating in all the ways that galactically famous university research scientists have of completely improving agriculture.

Badlands Journal editorial board

2-12-12

AlterNet

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GMO labeling petition

Submitted: Feb 10, 2012
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

Thomas Wittman of Ecofarm, whose Genetic Engineering Newslist keeps us informed about the state of the GMO mess, has sent a request for signatures for a nationwide petition to label GMO foods and and an article reporting the latest news on the costs of such labeling -- nearly zilch despite what the trogs at the Biotech Industry Association put out.

Thanks to Thomas' unremitting work over the last decade we also know that the dirty little story of GMOs is in: they don't cut down on pesticide demand, gene drift via pollen makes GMO-crop fields major contaminators of their regions, Monsanto and its weak sisters in the industry move with relentless barbarism through the courts to enforce their "patents on life," trying to create a Meek New World in which farmers will not save seed and will pay whatever the biotech corporations demand for genetically modified seed. And that's just for starters.

Information about how you can join the Genetic Engineering Newslist is at the bottom of this page.

Badlands Journal editorial board

 

 

1-10-12
Ecofarm.org
Action Alert - Tell FDA You Want GE Foods Labeled!
Thomas Wittman

Dear Readers,
   Please go to the NOC site www.NationalOrganicCoalition.org or the Just Label It site to see all active links and to take action.
Thank you,
Thomas

 

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D-D-D-Duh-Dry December Drives Drums of Drought

Submitted: Jan 11, 2012
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

1-11-12

Merced Sun-Star

Dry January raises concern over drought in northern California…Matt Weiser

http://www.mercedsunstar.com/2012/01/11/v-print/2186343/dry-january-raises-concern-over.html

The dreaded D-word – "drought" – is back on the tongues of many Californians now that a dry December has crawled into a dry January.

A dry December is not that unusual. But a dry January – well along into winter and usually the state's wettest month – is another matter.

"What is unusual is that it just hangs on and on and on," said Maury Roos, chief hydrologist at the California Department of Water Resources, noting it will be hard to recover from the missed January storms.

"It's not impossible, but it's quite unlikely we'll make it back to normal before the end of the season," Roos said.

Sacramento has had no rain since Dec. 15, and only a trace on that day: 0.07 inches.

Lake Tahoe – so dependent on snowfall for its winter economy – has fared just as badly. South Lake Tahoe has seen no measurable precipitation since Nov. 20, according to National Weather Service data.

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