WASHINGTON - AUGUSTA, Maine—A bipartisan group of 95 state lawmakers (representing 21 states) who have either sponsored state GMO labeling bills, or supported state GMO labeling ballot initiatives or bans on GMO crops, have signed on to a joint letter asking Congress to oppose H.R. 1599, or any other federal law that would preempt states’ rights to enact GMO labeling laws.
Lots of state lawmakers here making good points about why HR 1599 is such bad legislation. If the U.S. Congress were not such a cesspool of corruption, they would easily carry the day. But that's not the way of it these days.
Trying to discuss, or even understand, the "issue of GMO labeling" is so hard because it is not a single issue. Instead, it is a tangled mess of several components, including:
Our Food This isn't something abstract or optional; it's intimate, something we touch every day, that we need to survive. It's a fundamental human need, and corporations are trying to take it over.
Corporate Power The agri-business biochemical industry, spearheaded by Monsanto, is making a play for virtual ownership of the food supply. It's in the forefront of the interplay between "corporate persons" and the "other kind" - us.
Political Corruption One of the biggest tools of the corporate-power structure is its ability to buy-off politicians. Examples abound, from Bill Clinton's FDA to the current Congress's Rep. Pompeo (R, KS) and Sen. Blunt (R, MO). Want to see a Republican politician all-of-a-sudden not be for States Rights? Easy - all you gotta do is pay them.
Misinformation Another tool in "the industry's" arsenal. From financially-interested scientists and academics, to PR firms, to an army of lobbyists...well, if you haven't read Toxic Sludge Is Good for You! , or something like it, then good luck wading through the propaganda to some semblance of understanding of what's really going on. (BTW, I was going to get a lobbyist to write this for me, but I couldn't afford one. )
Junk Science Oh, yeah. Buried under the mountains of agri-business biochemical industry blather is an elegant refutation of the theoretical underpinnings of the entire project. It's called Unraveling the DNA Myth: The Spurious Foundation of Genetic Engineering, by Dr. Barry Commoner.
95 state lawmakers is a pretty impressive number. Let's hope they, and the cogent points they make in their letter, will blunt enough of the hypocrisy, avarice, and graft in the Congress to make a difference.
Of course, if that fails, it goes to Obama. Maybe he'll save the day... Yeah, that's the ticket! < /sarcasm>.