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A solemn walk through HR 875

By       Message Linn Cohen-Cole     Permalink
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Consumers Union -- Food & Water Watch

FWW just put out a description of the bill in which it is apparent they do not understand what is in it and what it will do.  With that as their starting point, they support it.

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The Pew Charitable Trusts

They are also connected to the Rockefeller Foundation, and involved with them in mandatory vaccinations programs around the world and issues of reducing population.

Safe Tables Our Priority 

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There is no list here of groups opposing this bill, which include the people whose lives are most at risk from it and who know its dangers the best and who should have been the first people consulted.  Instead, they have been shut out and when they have tried to report extreme dangers, they are ignored, dismissed, and marginalized.  Perhaps the other organizations listed here are as unfamiliar with the bill's contents and ramifications as FWW.

If you consider that not only is Rosa DeLauro married to Stanley Greenberg, who boasts Monsanto as one of his clients, but also that she receives the largest donations from agribusiness PAC's of just about anyone in Congress, does industry NEED to come out and say they support this particular bill? If cash to the sponsor doesn't count, and if formal positions supporting various specific aspects of the bill do not count, then what does? Would there not be massive public backlash against it if industry DID take a formal stand on every bill they want to see passed?

By the same token, I've not seen a single industrial ag company come out and oppose this bill, either. They have all been conspicuously silent. I seem to remember that they threw up quite a fuss over COOL, and caused enforcement to fall behind by more than 7 years... Not to mention the garbage with loopholes we've had to deal with since enforcement began. (What good does a "Canada, US, Mexico" label do for anybody? Especially with BSE (mad cow disease) in Canada and TB coming in daily from Mexico?) Where's the hoot and holler over this?

PASA also writes:

MYTH:  The bill will pass the Congress next week without amendments or debate.

FACT:  Food safety legislation has yet to be considered by any Congressional committee.

Alerts came from those who first discovered the bills were there, inserted only one week after Vilsack had said the USDA wasn't even considering centralizing the FDA and USDA at this time, so people saw how similar the bills were, knew how fast other things were being shoved through Congress without even reading those bills, and estimated how fast this could happen.  Perhaps with people alerted now, these bogus "food safety" bills can be stopped by the organic community once it realizes they will destroy utterly it.

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However, since one of us did have the luxury of listening to the farce taking place on the floor of the House of Representatives on March 11 concerning HR1105 (which funds NAIS among its hundreds of other projects) while awaiting the Livestock, Dairy and Poultry subcommittee hearing on NAIS - we have no doubt that this bill will move quickly now that 1105 has passed and since it has so many co-sponsors. 

The Representatives were honest enough to admit that though the Senators claimed every bill in the Omnibus Act had been heard and passed in the previous session, when in actuality, some 100 of the 170 bills in the package had NOT. The "ominous Omnibus Act" as several Representatives called it, went from introduction to the President in less than 13 working days.  I really have to question just whose side those groups are really on that would support this bill.

Our food safety system was trashed in 1995 by Secretary of Agriculture, Ann Veneman (Board member of Monsanto).  She appointed Dan Amstutz (VP of Cargill) who wrote the World Trade Organization Agreement on Agriculture.  Unlike GATT, WTO has major clout from trade sanctions and control of 90% of the international trade.  (See The WTO and the Politics of GMO.)  The World Trade Organization:

"Aims to ensure that governments do not use quarantine and food safety requirements as unjustified trade barriers... It provides Member countries with a right to implement traceability {NAIS} as an SPS measure."

The WTO did away with "quarantine and food safety requirements" that gave us "the safest food in the world" and is graciously going to allow Farmers to track AND COUNT the world's livestock for them instead.  Now HR 875 and an FDA release indicate all food will be tracked and all food producers will have food inspections.  With the threat of fines up to a million dollars a day, this will eliminate all the independent farms that have acted as a check on Corporate AG.

The FDA wants t o implement a more effective trace-back process, using technologies to rapidly and precisely track the origin and destination of contaminated foods, feed and ingredients.

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Met libertarian and conservative farmers and learned an incredible amount about farming and nature and science, as well as about government violations against them and against us all. The other side of the fence is nothing like what we've been (more...)

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