A Stolen Victory During the Beer Summit–OR, How to Rewrite Congressional Votes While No One is Really Looking (It’s About Our Food)

~~By Grail Guardian

Virtually unnoticed this last week by the MSM (who’d a thunk?) while the Resident hoisted a cold one with his new BFFs was the seemingly unremarkable failure of a bill that hasn’t been in the news much, HR2749: Food Safety Enhancement Act of 2009. Right about now you’re probably yawning and asking, “So what, Grail?” But before you click your browser button, let’s review exactly what this bill that InfoWars.com referred to as “Totalitarian Control of the Food Supply”. (I know, I know; it’s Alex Jones. But as a friend of mine used to say, “Every once in a while even a blind squirrel gets a nut”! This time he’s got lots of company.)

[Author’s note: I apologize for all the links, but it’s hard to accuse a monster corporation with attempted genocide without backing it up.]

Let’s start with the basics: Monsanto. You know who they are, right? If you’re not familiar, they’re basically the agricultural equivalent of Goldman Sachs. Big business, big restriction of competition, big health issues (in case you forgot Monsanto owned the rights to Aspartame when it was patented), and most importantly big buddies with the big “O”. Monsanto is the largest grower of fruits and vegetables in the world. They also manufacture the herbicide RoundUp. Sounds innocent so far, right? Bzzzzt! After RoundUp became the most widely used weed killer in the world, the sneaky little bastages at Monsanto decided that since virtually no one pays attention to agriculture anymore they could stealthily take over not only the marketplace, but literally the world’s food supply. They started making GMOs or Genetically Modified Organisms. And yes, that’s as spooky as it sounds.

There are basically 2 GMOs we need to be worried about: RoundUp Ready seed and Terminator Technology (basically sterile seeds that do not reproduce after one season so the farmer must purchase more seed – from Monsanto, of course – each year). Let’s take them one at a time:

RoundUp Ready seed has been genetically altered by Monsanto so that if it is sprayed with RoundUp, the desired plant won’t be killed by the herbicide. Sounds pretty good, at least until you think that through a bit. You probably have used RoundUp yourself to kill a few weeds growing between the cracks in your driveway or back yard patio, right? Me too. You take the bottle and aim at the weed, then in a few days it withers and dies. So the rocket scientists at Monsanto decided, “Well if a little works, a lot would be much better, right?” They engineered crop seeds so that instead of targeting the weeds, farmers can spray their whole crop and kill just the weeds while the corn, soy, or canola would survive to be harvested without all the hassles. But if you follow that thought through to its logical conclusion, what that means to you and me is that farmers are now dousing our food with RoundUp before they send it off to the local store or giant food processing plant. Now I’ve never tasted the stuff, but I can tell you from the smell that RoundUp is not something I want included in my diet. Shades of DDT anyone? What’s worse, neither the farmer nor the food processing plant need to disclose to us as consumers that this food was soaked in a chemical designed to destroy living organisms. Makes me feel all warm inside. (Or is that merely the burning of my digestive tract being slowly destroyed by the simple act of eating?)

Terminator Technology or sterile seeds are the Big M’s other grab to take over the world food supply. Monsanto uses genetic engineering to develop plants that are incapable of reproducing after 1 season. This means that poor farmers throughout the world will be left without the ability to use seeds from their current crop to start next year’s crop – they must buy new seed from Monsanto each year in

In India, this is a cause for some concern as scientists fear for the livelihood of 400 million farmers and for food security in the country. Already some poorer Indian farmers have been driven to suicide. It is feared that this type of technology could be used to make the poorer farmers even more dependent.

So much for solving the world hunger crisis. Now on to our innocuous bill, HR2749. The summary provided by the Congressional Research Service tells us that our bill

Requires the Secretary of Health and Human Services to: (1) issue science-based performance standards to minimum…

Hmmm. “Science-based standards”. Now just who might be in the business of creating these standards? Could it possibly be the scientists at good ol’ Monsanto?

(3) inspect facilities at a frequency determined pursuant to a risk-based schedule; (4) establish a food tracing system; (5) assess fees relating to food facility reinspection and food recall;

A“food tracing system”? Seriously? Am I going to break a tooth on an RFID chip? Will this be added to my electronically distributable Health Care records gathered under HR3200:America’s Affordable Health Choices Act of 2009? Will my food be held up until it starts to rot while it is properly” inventoried?

and (6) establish a program for accreditation of laboratories that perform analytical testing of food for import or export.

I guess this leads us to the conclusion that current labs are not accredited. Yikes!

Authorizes the Secretary to: (1) order an immediate cessation of distribution, or a recall, of food; (2) establish an importer verification program; and (3) quarantine food in any geographic area within the United States.

In other words, it’s up to the sole discretion of the Secretary (it’s not real clear to me if this refers to Tom Vilsack, the Monsanto fed Secretary of Agriculture or Obama lapdog Kathleen Sebelius, Secretary of Health and Human Services – not that there’s a difference) whether anyone can distribute food, or if food can be quarantined without due process of law. Winston? Is that you?

Provides for unique identifiers for food facilities and food importers.

There is not limitation on this. It could be required, under this law, for small farmers that sell fruit on a roadside stand, or even for people who grow their own tomatoes in the back yard. Kiss your local farm market goodbye unless they’ve got compliance bucks.

Deems a food to be adulterated if an inspection is delayed or refused.

Here’s the government double dip; first they can delay the food to be properly traced and inspected, then they can commandeer it after they held it up too long to still be fresh.

Gives the Commissioner of Food and Drugs subpoena authority with respect to a food proceeding.

Great. The FDA, who brought you such medical wonders as Aspartame, Fen Phen, and Vioxx gets to issue subpoenas against Farmer Jones down the road that had the audacity to try to grow his crop without using RoundUp on it.

Aside from my personal commentary, the less-snarky folks at FoodRenegade.com also point out:

A careful reading of the bill also reveals that HR 2749:

1. Will create duplicate fees & requirements for certified organic producers.

2. Will erode wildlife habitats in a misguided attempt to keep produce “clean” — when it is clear from the scientific evidence that it is industrialized animals that spread E.Coli 0157:H7 and Salmonella, not wild animals.

3. Will greatly increase the costs associated with safely composting manure and using it as a fertilizer for natural and organic crops.

4. Will interfere with and possibly prohibit small-scale farmers adding value to their products. This includes washing and cutting produce, creating canned jams or jellies, anything really.

5. Will require a costly electronic filing system that may well put farmers using paper records out of business, including many of our Amish brothers and sisters who can not comply with the electronic filing standards without violating their religious principles.

6. Will give the federal government the power to ban raw milk sales.

Ironically, it was the politicians own attempts at back door deals and sneakiness that appears to have sunk this ship during the legitimate House vote.

The bill was voted on by suspending the rules, limiting discussion to less than an hour, and not allowing any amendments that could have clarified who these new rules should affect. In the course of the last 24 hours, the language of the bill had been changed three times, and most representatives didn’t have the chance to read the latest version before being required to vote.

The only reason this bill is NOT the current law of the land is that it did not win enough of a majority to pass.

If you’re paying attention to the above quote written on July 29th, you should be scratching your head and saying, “huh?” So now it’s time for the kicker. The bill was voted on in the House of Representatives on July 29, 2009, and here is a direct copy from govtrack:

Jul 29, 2009: This bill failed in the House of Representatives by roll call vote. The vote was held under a suspension of the rules to cut debate short and pass the bill, needing a two-thirds majority. This usually occurs for non-controversial legislation. The totals were 280 Ayes, 150 Nays, 3 Present/Not Voting. Vote Details.

That was the way the page read yesterday when I started to write this article. When I went back to source some material, I suddenly noticed a spiffy little amendment:

Jul 30, 2009: This bill passed in the House of Representatives by roll call vote. The totals were 283 Ayes, 142 Nays, 8 Present/Not Voting. Vote Details.

That’s right, America! While you were watching Obama, Gates, Crowley, and Biden sing “Ein Prosit”, Congress was busy changing the vote on this bill because they (read Pelosi, Obama, Monsanto) didn’t like the outcome!

A little critical analysis of the changed votes shows that a couple of different things:

1) The members of the “Blue Dog Democrat Coalition” were obviously strong-armed into submission (along with a few non-proclaimed Blue Dog-type friends) when the Speaker didn’t get the results she wanted .

2) The RINOS (Republicans in Name Only) were easily bought off once again. There is no difference between the 2 major parties.

3) John Murtha needs to take his Alzheimer’s medications.

Here’s the breakdown:

Congressional District “Representative” Change in Vote Designation
AL-2 Bright, Bobby [D] Nay to Yea Blue Dog Coalition
CA-47 Sanchez, Loretta [D] Not Voting to Yea Blue Dog Coalition
CO-3 Salazar, John [D] Not Voting to Yea Blue Dog Coalition
FL-5 Brown-Waite, Virginia [R] Nay to Yea RINO
FL-8 Grayson, Alan [D] Yea to Not Voting Almost grew a spine
FL-10 Young, C. W. [R] Nay to Yea RINO
GA-7 Linder, John [R] Nay to Not Voting RINO
IL-8 Bean, Melissa [D] Nay to Yea Chicken
MN-2 Kline, John [R] Nay to Yea RINO
MS-4 Taylor, Gene [D] Nay to Yea Blue Dog Coalition
MO-2 Akin, W. [R] Nay to Not Voting RINO
NJ-3 Adler, John [D] Yea to Not Voting Confused
NY-23 McHugh, John [R] Not Voting to Yea RINO
NC-9 Myrick, Sue [R] Nay to Yea RINO
OR-3 Blumenauer, Earl [D] Nay to Yea Chicken
PA-12 Murtha, John [D] Yea to Not Voting Confused as hell
TN-4 Davis, Lincoln [D] Not Voting to Nay Blue Dog Coalition
TX-24 Marchant, Kenny [R] Yea to Nay Woke up from his nap
WI-8 Kagen, Steve [D] Nay to Yea Chicken

Here’s the breakdown:

So, my friends, we’ve been bamboozled again. We had a victory, but just like during the Democratic primaries, when TPTB didn’t get their way they simply changed the vote. Just like that. And the residents in Florida should be ever so happy to learn that they were screwed by both political parties once again. Um, guys – 3 of your non-representing Representatives changed their votes after the fact; think you might want to consider a change in 2010? Like None of the Above!

Now comes the question, “What can we do about it?” There are several things:

1) This bill has not passed the Senate yet. Get on the phone/fax/email and hammer them! Let them know there’s no way you’ll let anyone forget if they vote to starve America and the world.

2) If you live in one of the districts listed above, get on the phone and scream at these bastages! Let them know that you’re paying attention and you know they changed their vote. Demand to know why?

3) Join the march on Washington, D.C. on September 12, 2009. We need to let those inside the Beltway know that America does not support their thieving stealing lying condescending flip flopping actions against our wishes.

4) Boycott Monsanto. Shelly Roche from ByteStyle TV started this seemingly impossible (but in reality simple) idea. Check out her video here for one way to beat them at their own game.

If all this talk about Monsanto determining what you can eat has gotten to you, Shelly has also put together a dynamite list of how to recognize GMO foods that’s worth checking out. To induce you to read her article, I’ll share one I didn’t know about:

Look at the stickers on fruitthere is a PLU code with either 4 or 5 numbers. If your fruit’s label has 4 numbers, it is conventionally grown. 5 numbers starting with a 9 means it was organically grown, and 5 numbers starting with an 8 means GMO.

Last, but not least, if you really want to be vigilant about avoiding GMOs, corn is an important yet difficult thing to avoid (thank you Tom Daschle). Check out the Emergency Guide to Avoiding Corn from findsafefood.com. You might be surprised at where it’s hiding.

The Past Week: March 15-21, 2009 (Home Gardens on Alert?; “Practical” Democrats Group; Federal Education Stimulus $$ Going to Rich Schools; Soldiers Pledge to Refuse Illegal Orders; New Marxist President of El Salvador Compares His Message of Change to Obama’s)

~~By InsightAnalytical-GRL

We really enjoy doing the “Saturday Sanity” post which gives us an excuse to talk about gardening and to post some pictures. But now we have to worry about whether we can even HAVE gardens!!

A huge hat tip to Deadenders again, this time for this bizarre, but in these times, totally believable story:

Your Home Garden May Cost You Your Home

Read the details on HR 785 being pushed by Rep. Rose DeLauro (D-CT) who receives about 200K in PAC money from the agricultural industry  has ties to Monsanto through her husband. Deadenders comments:  “This bill creates a new government entity to police the production of all food in our county, not just the big farms but even your home garden. The language of the bill is as vague a campaign speech by Obama and once signed into law could be interpreted anyway the powers that be would like.”

We better enjoy them our gardens while we can!!  Do you think Michelle Obama’s White House garden will be confiscated??

***

So Evan Bayh has formed his group of “moderate Democrats” that are supposed to be “practical” and full of  “common sense.” If there’s one name that sticks out in all this, it’s the presence of Claire McCaskill of Missouri.  Claire was a very strong supporter of Obama but lately has joined Russ Feingold as one of only two Democratic senators to oppose earmarks.  Claire must be getting an earful from the folks back home in the “Show Me” state…or she’s a mole.

***

Well, surprise, surprise!  All that federal money pouring into education is somehow getting distributed in ways that aren’t getting the cash to the places that need it the most. Apparently, old federal formulas are still in use and CHANGE hasn’t really happened:

Some Rich Districts Get Richer as Aid Is Rushed to Schools

RANDOLPH, Utah — Dale Lamborn, the superintendent of a somewhat threadbare rural school district, feels the pain of Utah’s economic crisis every day as he tinkers with his shrinking budget, struggling to avoid laying off teachers or cutting classes like welding or calculus.

Just across the border in Wyoming, a state awash in oil and gas money, James Bailey runs a wealthier district. It has a new elementary school and gives every child an Apple laptop.

But under the Obama administration’s education stimulus package, Mr. Lamborn, who needs every penny he can get, will receive hundreds of dollars less per student than will Dr. Bailey, who says he does not need the extra money.

“For us, this is just a windfall,” Dr. Bailey said.

MORE

This story reminds me of the story we reported last week about money going to Albuquerque and the new busses being bought with it being out of state and out of the country.  Seems the stimulus money is wandering around without any real direction at all…Get a compass, quick!

****

A hat tip to Logistics Monster for this story:

The Tip of the Iceberg/Soldiers pledge to refuse disarmament demands

An invitation to soldiers and peace officers across the United States to pledge to refuse illegal orders – including “state of emergency” orders that could include disarming or detaining American citizens – has struck a chord, collecting more than 100,000 website visitors in a little over a week and hundreds of e-mails daily.

MORE

But will they defend my garden?  Well, read through the long list of things the group of mosty active soldiers will NOT do…

***

Meanwhile in El Salvador..last Sunday’s Presidential election was won by an ex-journalist with Marxist ties who is vowing closer ties to the Obama adminstration…

Ex-Guerrillas Win El Salvador Election

From the AP story:

Behind Mauricio Funes is a party of former Marxist guerrillas that fought to overthrow U.S.-backed governments in the 1980s and whose rise to power has raised fears of a communist regime in the war-scarred Central American country.

Funes, who gave up journalism less than two years ago to become the presidential candidate of the Farabundo Marti National Liberation Front, or FMLN, sought to quell those concerns after his historic victory Sunday.

SNIP

Funes, who was a TV reporter during the war, has stayed away from the firebrand anti-U.S. rhetoric that characterizes Ortega and Venezuela’s leftist President Hugo Chavez. Instead, he has compared his message of change to Obama’s.

Funes, who takes office June 1, promised in his victory speech that strengthening ties with the United States would be a priority. The Obama administration congratulated him Monday.

SNIP

The overture was a marked departure from the administration of former President George W. Bush, which suggested during the 2004 election that it could not trust an FMLN government.

SNIP
The overture was a marked departure from the administration of former President George W. Bush, which suggested during the 2004 election that it could not trust an FMLN government.

But, but…Funes is echoing Obama’s “message of change…”  Which makes Funes as completely trustworthy as Obama is…

***
Finally, be sure to check out two important stories:

House Passes HR 1388 Under Cover of AIG Diversion –The Linchpin in the Obama Plan to “BUY” Voters …Read What It Says and PLEASE SIGN PETITION TO SENATE NOW!!

The petition will be taking signatures through Monday.

Also:

Take a look at they story about Attorney Orly Taitz and her contacts with Chief Justice John Roberts and Antonin Scalia on the subject of Obama’s citizenship status that was included in the recent Scanner

The Scanner–Politics March 18, 2009: (Taitz-Supreme Court; Sharia Law in Minnesota re: Home Mortgages; Stimulus Money Wanders from the States; Privatizing Vets’ Healthcare)

***

THE PAST WEEK

*By American Lassie

**By Grail Guardian

***By Kenosha Marge

Saturday Sanity: The Antidote to the Madness (March 21, 2009) (Flowers, Fruit and a Miniature Spider Web)

House Passes HR 1388 Under Cover of AIG Diversion –The Linchpin in the Obama Plan to “BUY” Voters …Read What It Says and PLEASE SIGN PETITION TO SENATE NOW!!

*Get in the Mood…It’s SPRING!!

Have You RSVP’d For the DFA Birthday Party Yet?

The Scanner–Politics March 18, 2009: (Taitz-Supreme Court; Sharia Law in Minnesota re: Home Mortgages; Stimulus Money Wanders from the States; Privatizing Vets’ Healthcare)

**The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the North American Union: A Layman’s Overview of the Coming New World Order

ALERT: PLEASE SUPPORT ACTION TO OPPOSE CARD-CHECK NOW! W.A.M ALERT

***Left and Right and Silly

The Past Week: March 8-14, 2009 (Alaska Rivalry? Palin/Murkowski; Franken vs.Colemen=Bush vs. Gore?; China Gearing Up for It’s Own Second Stimulus Package; Sen. Gregg’s Parting Shot)