From the March 2010 Idaho Observer:


The Fox Guarding the Chickens

by Jeffrey M Smith

The person who may be responsible for more food-related illness and death than anyone in history has just been made the U.S. food safety czar. This is no joke.

When FDA scientists were asked to weigh in on what was to become the most radical and potentially dangerous change in our food supply -- the introduction of genetically modified (GM) foods -- memo after memo describing toxins, new diseases, nutritional deficiencies, and hard-to-detect allergens were kept secret. These documents were adamant that the technology carried “serious health hazards,” and required careful, long-term research, including human studies, before any genetically modified organisms (GMOs) could be safely released into the food supply.

But the biotech industry rigged the game so that neither science nor scientists would stand in their way. They had placed their own man in charge of FDA policy and he wasn’t going to be swayed by feeble arguments related to animal or human safety. No, he was going to do what corporations had done for decades to get past these types of pesky concerns. He was going to lie.

When the FDA was constructing their GMO policy in 1991-2, their scientists were clear that gene-sliced foods were significantly different and could lead to “different risks than conventional foods.” But official policy declared the opposite, claiming that the FDA knew of no significant differences, and declared GMOs substantially equivalent.

This fiction became the rationale for allowing GM foods on the market without any required safety studies whatsoever, or labeling of GM-containing products. The determination of whether GM foods were safe to eat was placed entirely in the hands of the companies that made them -- companies like Monsanto, which told us that the PCBs, DDT, and Agent Orange were safe.

GMOs were rushed onto our plates in 1996. Over the next nine years, multiple chronic illnesses in the US nearly doubled -- from 7% to 13%. Allergy-related emergency room visits doubled between 1997 and 2002 while food allergies, especially among children, skyrocketed. We also witnessed a dramatic rise in asthma, autism, obesity, diabetes, digestive disorders, and certain cancers.

In January of this year, Dr. P. M. Bhargava, one of the world’s top biologists, stated that after reviewing 600 scientific journals, he concluded that the GM foods in the US are largely responsible for the increase in many serious diseases.

If GMOs are indeed responsible for massive sickness and death, then the individual who oversaw the FDA policy that facilitated their introduction holds a uniquely infamous role in human history. That person is Michael Taylor. He had been Monsanto’s attorney before becoming policy chief at the FDA. Soon after, he became Monsanto’s vice president and chief lobbyist. And this month Obama appointed Michael Taylor to become the senior advisor to the commissioner of the FDA. He is now America’s food safety czar.

he Milkman

While Taylor was at the FDA in the early 90’s, he also oversaw the policy regarding Monsanto’s genetically engineered bovine growth hormone (rbGH/rbST) -- injected into cows to increase milk supply.

The milk from injected cows has more pus, more antibiotics, more bovine growth hormone, and most importantly, more insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF-1). IGF-1 is a huge risk factor for common cancers and its high levels in this drugged milk is why so many medical organizations and hospitals have taken stands against rbGH. A former Monsanto scientist told me that when three of his Monsanto colleagues evaluated rbGH safety and discovered the elevated IGF-1 levels, even they refused to drink any more milk -- unless it was organic and therefore untreated.

Government scientists from Canada evaluated the FDA’s approval of rbGH and concluded that it was a dangerous facade. The drug was banned in Canada, as well as Europe, Japan, Australia and New Zealand. But it was approved in the US while Michael Taylor was in charge. His drugged milk might have caused a significant rise in US cancer rates.

To learn more about Monsanto’s deadly 100-year history, how the Bush Sr. administration gave “regulation relief” to biotechnology so the U.S. could become the biotech world leader; Monsanto’s record of falsification of data regarding PCBs and dioxins; forced entry into countries where GMOs are banned, such as Mexico and Paraguay; the devastation of GM cotton on India’s economy, livestock and farmers; more details on the toxic side effects of GM food, and other Monsanto products; and the revolving door policy between this conscienceless corporation and the FDA that is supposed to be protecting us from such corporations, purchase “The World According to Monsanto” from The Institute for Responsible Technology, P.O. Box 469, Fairfield, Iowa 52556 phone: 641-209-1765 or through their website www.responsibletechnology.org Only $25 including S&H.

Note: The original article with footnotes is posted at www.huffingtonpost.com