[Ip-health] Regarding your petition

George Carter fiar at verizon.net
Thu Jun 14 09:37:52 PDT 2012

Please note, the reference below should have been to the TPP, or Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement, that the Obama administration and the USTR have assiduously and vigorously fought on behalf of industry to eliminate access to generic medications, positing that intellectual property trumps human life.

See, e.g., http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/06/13/obama-trade-document-leak_n_1592593.html?utm_hp_ref=mostpopular 

Similarly, Obama has appointed numerous Monsanto employees and agents of big agribusiness interests. And I am supposed to be enthusiastic about his candidacy...why? When he appears really no less worse than the vile, reprehensible, "downsize-loving" bigot that is running against him? Obama is less of a bigot, I suppose. But for the average American?

What does he really care? It's the money that counts, and the rest of us and our views pretty much don't matter for much, do we?

Dear James,

Thank you for your reply. However, it is quite disappointing. The evidence supporting the notion that genetically-modified crops are "effective" is scant and largely driven by the industries in question, particularly Monsanto. Meanwhile, the risks of such organisms have not been elucidated and the evidence suggests numerous negative impacts on ecosystems, notably in the destruction of pollinators. Further, the health effects on humans are unclear and pregnant women and developing children may be adversely affected. Indeed, if these risks were not real and substantial, why would the industry fight so vigorously to maintain a policy unique to the United States that denies consumers the right to know which products are contaminated with GM organisms?

Therefore, the burden of proof of safety and efficacy has not been met. And recent evidence suggests that GMO crops are merely inducing resistance in the very organisms they are ineptly intended to fend off.

Finally, and most egregiously and most damning to the Obama administration is the vile adherence to antiquated, dangerous and ultimately anti-competitive/anti-business notions of "intellectual property" that posit profit as a more important outcome than the ecosystem, our planet, human health and well-being and life itself. This is reflected in negotiations of the TPP, for example and on a different front, that seek to pressure nations globally to adhere to notions of "if you can afford it, you live, otherwise drop dead" when it comes to pharmaceutical drugs.

This is a form of nothing less than economic genocide.

It is a failure of this Administration and completely flies in the face of Mr. Obama's initial bright promises of Change.  To the contrary, it is quite literally business as usual. And that cheap maneuvering to acquire the capital to run campaigns is to the detriment of not only our democracy but ultimately--and rather shortly--our entire civilization. 

This perverted and dishonest model of capitalism is failing horribly and is part and parcel with the forces that accelerate global heating that threatens our species, even as we face what some have called the Sixth Great Extinction Event.

So in short, while I do appreciate your taking the time to reply, I find the response completely unsatisfactory and actually depressing as it is horrifying.

George M. Carter
Brooklyn, NY

On Jun 13, 2012, at 9:51 PM, James Kvaal - Policy Director, BarackObama.com wrote:

> George,
> Thank you for getting in touch to share your concerns regarding genetically modified crops.
> We've received your petition, and I'd like to take some time to write back on this issue.
> A strong farming economy goes hand-in-hand with protecting the environment. President Obama has taken historic actions to promote clean air and water by raising car and truck mileage, reducing mercury and toxic air pollution, and restoring our great ecosystems from the Great Lakes to the Everglades. His administration is working with more than 500,000 farmers and ranchers to implement conservation practices on more than 30 million acres of land.
> President Obama is committed to a strong agricultural economy where family farmers can prosper. He called on Congress to eliminate taxpayer subsidies to wealthy agribusiness. And under his leadership, the Food and Drug Administration has adopted guidelines to reduce the use of antibiotics to enhance livestock's growth or promote production, not treat illnesses. 
> Genetically modified crops hold out the promise of benefits like increased production and reduced reliance on pesticides. At the same time, some Americans want more information to help them choose their food. President Obama understands these concerns and is considering additional steps in this area.
> Thank you again for writing us.
> Sincerely,
> James Kvaal
> Policy Director
> Obama for America

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