Friday, October 21, 2016

MONSANTO TRIBUNAL: A DAMNING INDICTMENT OF AMERICA’S MOST EVIL CORPORATION

The day of reckoning for the most evil corporation in America is at hand:

The Monsanto Tribunal in the Hague adjourned after the panel of judges heard evidence from farmers, victims, lawyers, doctors and activists from all over the world over two days. The tribunal is to deliver its verdict on Monsanto in December.

Monsanto was invited to the tribunal and its parallel sessions but refused to attend. Rather, they issued a statement in five languages that the tribunal was ‘pushing’ the wrong issues, since the real discussion is about feeding the world. Really now!

Well, firstly: Apparently, everyone but Monsanto saw that the issues that were being discussed at the people’s assembly that ran parallel to the tribunal were in fact discussing the real “real” issue of how easy it is to feed the world safely and without the ghastly socioeconomic fallout of the Monsanto recipe of captured bio-resources, disenfranchised farming communities, genetically modified organisms (GMOs) and planet destroying agrochemicals. The world is going to quickly and easily find ways to feed itself that does not involve ecocide – the crime that the tribunal hopes will be ratified by the international courts and for which, Monsanto is one of the primary respondents.

Secondly: Monsanto’s billions of bottom line profits do not come from feeding the world. Instead, it comes from producing commodities, feed for animals, fuel for cars, and sugar for the food industry at a very high cost to human health and environment. This is production that feeds profit, not people. In that respect, sugar and tobacco have the same level of addiction, uselessness and health cost but there are more sugar addicts than there are tobacco addicts. So their profits from Sugar are actually counterproductive to human health and since many sugar based food products also have barrel loads of fats and additives, they have contributed quite substantially to the obesity epidemic, cancers, heart disease and diabetes.


Thirdly: When they talk about any issue they call “real”, we must understand that it is in fact fantasy. It is fantasy legitimized as reality by the capture of science and scientists. It is  fantasy converted to reality by terror tactics similar to those used by witch doctors, kattadiyas and mainstream religion. It is fantasy forcibly shoved down the throats of the people as reality, by capturing public opinion through marketing, by pirating and commandeering common biological resources, It is fantasy confounded into reality by purchasing policy, by ridiculing, suppressing and attacking alternative practice and independent science. People may have never heard of this company but practically every food and many non-food based products that they buy contain a so-called Monsanto signature be it glyphosate and other toxins, GMOs  or other residuals of their profit motivated market aggression. People buy these not really because they want them but because they cannot escape them. 

Legitimizing quackery and quackerizing science:

Monsanto should be worried. The world is no longer willing to listen to the manufactured truths and blatant lies of the Trans National Corporations (TNCs). The tribunal and people’s assembly in The Hague  clearly, unequivocally and deterministically underscored the lies and the viciousness of the spin through some of the strongest, most collective global testimony against Monsanto to date. They proved that the spin is no longer either valid or valuable and that it is being increasingly known to the people of the world as being part of the same old tired, stale, nasty marketing swill and gobbledygook of the TNCs as a whole.

The reason why a tribunal had to be held as a precursor to global litigation was in fact because of the extent to which this TNC controls agrarian policy, practice and ag-research. Their track record on this speaks for itself. They are currently facing at least 700 lawsuits of victims who developed non-Hodgkin lymphoma as a result of exposure to polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), which Monsanto manufactured until the 1970s. Their mantra then was “oh its quite safe for use and singularly free of difficulties”. It is the same spiel that they are using now for glyphosate. However, the USA government banned PCBs in 1976 due to its carcinogenic potential. They could not claim ignorance of the nastiness of their own product with internal documents showing they knew and that in fact, they stopped their own staff from having lunch in areas in their PCB section because “chlorinated biphenyls were quite toxic materials by ingestion or inhalation."  Much like Pacific Gas & Electric, Monsanto is now being massively litigated for their continued suppression of the health hazards of PCBs and their continued marketing of those products three decades ago.  P,G&E got taken to the cleaners back in 1996 in California for contaminating the ground water with hexavalent chromium and causing area residents to become ill with a cocktail of cancers. Similar to what Monsanto does these days, Pacific G&E used money, power and false science to try to evade being convicted but they were brought to book through public action and civil torts with the highest ever direct action settlement at the time (USD 333 million). I don’t need to explain this to anyone who has seen the movie “Erin Brockovich”. What P,G&E did in California is a sneeze compared to what Monsanto has done to the world. Monsanto knew that glyphosate is an acylating agent when it bought the patent in the early 70s. They knew that it will combine with heavy metals and make hard water harder. They knew that the toxins created would rot the kidneys of anyone who drank it or inhaled it. They knew that it would cause was not “harmless” by any stretch of the imagination as they claim. Dr. Jayasuma was brutal in providing his findings to the tribunal. The settlement from Monsanto for their crimes against humanity and crimes against nature should run into billions. 

The TNCs respond:

The TNCs are fighting back in many ways – not just through their old tricks and trucks such as trying to bluster and lie their way out of culpability by attacking the attacker such as  via this piece  that tries to debunk the findings of all of the expert witnesses at the Hague Tribunal in single paragraphs, with the writer covering himself by stating that it is not an in-depth study but still making in-depth claims. The writer then claims no studies have been done that prove that agrochemicals have any impact on human health. I beg to differ via this piece.

No, there new, disturbing strategy is by putting up a common front by consolidating the nastiness of a collection of evil corporates through mergers. Monsanto agreed recently to be bought out by Bayer of Germany and the US regulators must rule on it. If it goes through, that would make the most evil company in America and the most evil company in Europe one giant poison factory. It is expected that the  EU will put up more of a fight against this merger because of their general revulsion of GM foods. However, recent merges of other large agribusiness TNCs are equally worrying not just for their potential to sell lies as truth, bad as good, demonic  as angelic. If regulators approve, then Dow Chemical will merge with Dupont. In 2016, the China National Chemical Corporation was allowed to buy the Swiss seed company Syngenta for USD 43 billion. In Canada just this last September 2016,  Potash Corporation of Saskatchewan and Agrium joined forces to create a fertilizer giant amid slumping fertilizer prices. If all of these mergers go through, then, 59% of all patented seeds and 64% of all pesticides will be sold by the triad of BayerMonsanto, ChemChinaSyngenta and DowDupont with even more consolidated potential to mess with the truth and sell the world a crock of lies to go with their vats of poisons. 

The world shall have its day in court:

The world is not going to cow down or knuckle under their terror tactics of claiming that the world will starve without them. As already pointed out, they don’t feed the world and they never did. While they are profiteering from various non-food products and bad food commodities, it is the small farmers of the world that are actually feeding it. One of the key issues that illegally legitimized science has suppressed is the fact that we have enough food to feed the world but that it's distribution is crazily skewed by multinationals commandeering food growing resources and market chains resulting in horrifying waste. This dictatorial capture and excessive waste is why the world's most densely food growing region (Asia) is also the region that has the most number of starving people and no amount of arguing about "feeding the world" can justify that crime against Asia specifically and the world generally. Of all of the food that is sucked into the TNC businesses that deprive the growers of equitable consumption of their own efforts, a full 35% is wasted (last I checked). THIRTY FIVE PERCENT! Much of that waste is by developed countries and of those, a huge component  is from the west. Per capita waste by consumers is between 95-115 kg a year in Europe and North America, while consumers in sub-Saharan Africa, south and south-eastern Asia, each throw away only 6-11 kg a year! Take a look at the production to retailing waste in the table and the significant culpability of the TNCs in this madness needs no further explanation.  It is a perverted, pervasively vicious model that needs to be wiped off the face of the earth before its practices wipes us all off the face of the earth. The tribunal in The Hague is the first step in that process. 


As engineer Nnimmo Bassey of Nigeria said at the opening of the tribunal, “Being an ambassador to this Tribunal is like being an ambassador to mother Earth. If mother Earth could speak, Monsanto ought to be in jail long before now. Food is a celebration, it is culture, it is life. This is a struggle not against one multinational corporation, it is a struggle for life, it is a struggle for liberty. A struggle to stop big companies from colonizing our food systems, colonizing our agriculture, holding mother Earth as a slave for their profits”.

Indeed.

Even though the Monsanto lackeys have already started their ridiculous games of attempting to ridicule the witnesses, the independent experts and the panel itself, no one is fooled. They tried to portray the events as a “fake trial” when it fact it was not a trial at all but a tribunal and that as such, its goals and objectives were entirely different to that of a  trial although the findings of this tribunal will most certainly affect the outcomes of a trial on the same issue.  

Not when the tribunal consists Judge Dior Fall Sow of Senegal who is a consultant to the International Criminal Court and a former Advocate General at the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda,  Judge Jorge Fernández who is from Souza, Mexico and who is currently Judge at the Court of Administrative Litigation of Mexico City, Judge Eleonora Lamm of Argentina who is the Human rights Director for the Supreme Court of Justice of Mendoza with a doctorate in bioethics and law, Judge Steven Shrybman of Canada who is a partner in the law firm of Goldblatt Partners LLP and practices international trade and public interest law in Toronto and Ottawa and Judge Françoise Tulkens of Belgium, who has a Doctorate in Law, a Master’s degree in Criminology and is a former judge in the European Court of Human Rights.

Not when the witnesses include Mr. Timothy Litzenburg, a civil torts lawyer from America with over a thousand cases against Monsanto, Dr. Channa Jayasumana of Sri Lanka with extensive research into Chronic Kidney Disease, Dr. Damian Verzeñassi, public health expert from Argentina, Professor Marcelo Firpo, public and environment health researcher from Brazil and most telling, the host of victims from all over the world from rice farmers to bee keepers who calmly, confidently provided their testimony as a damning indictment Monsanto.

There day of reckoning is going to come sooner, rather than later.

As Judge Tulkens stated “We will try to deliver the legal opinion before December 10th, the International Day of human Rights. It will be addressed to Monsanto and to the United Nations. From this legal opinion, other jurisdictions can be involved and more judges will step in. We, as the judges [at the Monsanto Tribunal] have seen, heard, noted and deliberated.

International law will now probably take into consideration new issues such as the key issue of ecocide and bring justice to the earth, its plants, its animals and most importantly, its people. 

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