It’s time for Commissioners to show some backbone

Photo collage/joel dyer

On Tuesday, March 16, the Open Space Advisory Committee voted 5-3 to recommend that certain GMOs be allowed to continue growing on Boulder County’s open space for another five years. This same panel made sure to stress they want to see far more data collected by the County over this new five-year period — data related to how GMOs and the tons of probable human carcinogens that will get sprayed on them over that time are impacting people.


This is a perfect example of the problem in Boulder County with the whole GMO debate. The majority of folks in a position — elected, appointed or hired — to make a decision about GMOs on open space don’t have the backbone to act when the time comes.

Many, and quite likely the majority of Boulder County residents, oppose growing GMO crops on the land that has been purchased with their tax dollars supposedly for their benefit. This explains why two — and purportedly all three — of our current County Commissioners have at some point during the last five-year GMO experiment period claimed they oppose the continued presence of GMOs and the pesticides and herbicides that go along with them on open space.

Such promises are key to how people get elected to the Commissioner jobs in this county. If you doubt that, try running on a pro GMO/fracking platform and see how far you get.

I understand the motive behind these promises; I just don’t understand the apparent difficultly in keeping them.

What are we going to learn in the next five years by kicking this nearly kicked-to-death can further down the road?

Will we discover the World Health Organization research that pronounced glyphosate — the active ingredient in the Roundup herbicide most often used on GMOs — to be a likely human carcinogen meant to say that only Europeans are likely to get cancer from it, not people in Boulder County?

Will we discover Boulder County air is incapable of moving over fences, making chemical trespass via drift impossible, despite the fact that it has already occurred on organic farms in our county?

Will the fact that glysophate overuse has been proven to create super-weeds, which now require the increased use of known carcinogens to kill them, suddenly be unproven?

Will the research showing GMOs require more, not less, chemicals than conventional crops suddenly vanish?

Over the next five years will glysophate suddenly stop being found in groundwater throughout the world where it is used?

And finally, over the next five years will Monsanto suddenly have a crisis of conscience and be moved to start allowing scientists who aren’t on its payroll or working for universities dependent on its funding to research the effects of GMOs on human beings without the fear of being sued?

The answer to all of the above is “no.”

Nothing over the next five years will miraculously make glyphosate or other chemicals used on GMOs, like 2,4-D, any less dangerous, and there is no reason to believe that Monsanto will suddenly allow research of its patented products in the U.S. by third-party entities not beholden to the company’s economic support.

The only reason for pushing a decision on GMOs on open space five years further down the road is a lack of guts.

If the Commissioners believe the Boulder County voters and taxpayers who own this open space are wrong in their opposition to GMOs, then it’s time to step up and say so. No more, “We need to wean off GMOs slowly,” or, “We need more data,” or we need “blah blah blah.”

You have had the time, Commissioners, and you have the data. You are not obligated legally to keep your campaign promises. You are morally obligated to do what you believe is right and to say what you really believe to the people you represent.

“I oppose GMOs, but… ” won’t cut it anymore.

Oppose them or don’t. It’s time to put an end to fabricated delays that offer cover until you reach your next taxpayer-funded job.
If you think GMOs are the best thing for the people of Boulder County, then cast your vote accordingly.

I think most of us can handle the truth, and we know how to use the ballot box if we disagree. What we can’t take anymore of is this never-ending process that implies backbones will be grown if we’ll just wait a few more years.

  • A lot can happen in five years. Maybe some of the GMO haters who’ve had their minds warped by pseudo science, the Boulder bandwagon effect, and Big Organic talking points will do a little research and find out their fears about genetic engineering are poorly based.

    For example, Mr. Dyer’s claim that GMOs require more chemicals than conventional crops conflicts with ag science as well as common sense since it presumes farmers are willing to spend more for GMO seed than conventional for the privilege of then spending more on pesticides than they would had they stuck with cheaper seed.

    The source of the myth Mr. Dyer repeats is a series of extrapolations made by organic industry consultant Chuck Benbrook from the incomplete NASS data set of total pesticide use in the US. While Mr. Dyer is clearly untrained in science and statistics not everyone is in that boat. The Weed Control Freaks blog has analyzed Benbrook’s speculation and found it lacking:

    Peer-reviewed research suggests that GMOs are associated with 30% less pesticide use – or perhaps toxicity – than conventional farming. I’m sure that’s easily checked by any diligent researcher who cares about the planet.

    The combination of Roundup Ready seed with glyphosate also enables many farmers to practice zero-till farming, sequestering greater amounts of carbon in the soil than organic or conventional farming and limiting weed growth, another win for the planet.

    Complementary systems of herbicide-resistant seed and patented herbicides are available to conventional farmers through Syngenta’s Clearfield system (relying on mutagenic seed rather than transgenic GMO seed), but that systems uses a more toxic herbicide that has given rise to three times as many resistant weeds.

    Perhaps five years will be enough time to determine whether the IARC’s guess that glyphosate is a probable carcinogen for farm workers in some circumstances is more reliable than the eight assessments by national regulators and the other three done by the World Health Organization that found little risk from glyphosate use and none from eating glyphosate treated crops.

    And perhaps we’ll see the impact of new gene editing technologies CRISPR/Cas9 that modify genes in place rather than transferring them from other plants of the same or different species. CRISPR is so cheap that small labs and NGOs can use it to create plants with better drought resistance, improved nutrition, and greater resilience to insects, viruses, fungi, and other environmental stresses.

    Yes, a lot can happen in five years. But we’ll see very little progress if we insist on banning every new technology in favor of some naive fantasy about returning to a golden age that never existed.

    BTW, please vaccinate.

    • Debbie Owen

      What is Big Organic? Would that include companies like Kellogg’s that sells organic food products? As far as talking points go, it looks like you’ve covered many of the pro-GMO talking points, too bad it’s just spin. Considering the fact that herbicides are a form of pesticides, the use of pesticides has greatly increased due to GMO crops and to suggest otherwise is just wrong. And you can try to defend the use of the poison glyphosate in our food, but the fact is it has been declared as a probable carcinogen by the IARC. Obviously the IARC is much more credible than other regulatory agencies because they considered only peer reviewed studies in their assessments. Other regulatory agencies, such as the EFSA, also considered non-peer reviewed industry funded studies that are kept hidden from the public and independent scientists. It seems to me if the industry really had proof that glyphosate is safe, they wouldn’t keep those studies hidden, it’s all very suspicious.

      • I’ve presented links to peer-reviewed research. If you want to discuss, please do so in kind.

        • Debbie Owen

          Did you miss the point in my reply? It isn’t the peer reviewed research that I have a problem with, it is the non-peer reviewed industry funded studies that I have a problem with. I can’t provide links to hidden studies.

          • So you’ve painted yourself into a corner where you can’t support the claims you’re making.

          • Debbie Owen

            LOL, now you are sounding desperate. Go ahead and see if Monsanto will release the studies to you, then you can share them with us. Meanwhile it’s obvious that you support industry funded non-peer reviewed studies that you can’t even look at over peer reviewed studies that everyone can see. Just blindly trust Monsanto no matter what and enjoy roundup in your food.

          • You’re putting words in my mouth. I support the claims I’ve made and can back them up. You can’t.

          • razorjack

            Yet you reject my claims because I gave you links to too much of it.


          • I didn’t reject your claims, I asked you to pick out one or two studies for discussion. I do this because I’ve never seen you cite a study without misrepresenting it.

          • razorjack

            We’re talking about big organic in this thread. Why are you desperate to change the subject?

          • Debbie Owen

            No, all you have is pro-GMO BS because you can’t defend the fact that other regulatory agencies considered secret industry funded non-peer reviewed studies. Don’t pretend to be for science when you only support studies (even those that are kept secret) that support the pro-GMO agenda.

          • Is the European Food Safety Authority part of the conspiracy you and razorjack are worried about? Because it has studied glyphosate twice – once before the IARC report and once after – and both times has found it safe. Here’s what EFSA says:

            “Following a second mandate from the European Commission to consider the findings from the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) regarding the potential carcinogenicity of glyphosate or glyphosate-containing plant protection products in the on-going peer review of the active substance, EFSA concluded that glyphosate is unlikely to pose a carcinogenic hazard to humans and the evidence does not support classification with regard to its carcinogenic potential according to Regulation (EC) No 1272/2008.”


            That assessment is consistent with all the science on glyphosate, not just the secret science neither of us has read but also with the published science that one of us has read and the other hasn’t.

            What’s next, Lizard People, Templars, and the Federal Reserve?

          • razorjack

            You are not “debating science” and it is disingenuous to claim that you are. You are using science, selectively, to promote a corrupt GMO pesticide industry political agenda.

          • Yet any time the subject of GMO regulation comes up, anywhere on the Internet seemingly, you and Debbie are johnny on the spot spreading misinformation about herbicides. This conspiracy you two are peddling is pretty light on evidence and very thick with emotion, rants, and allegations.

            Why is that?

          • razorjack

            There are people who are truth tellers who dedicate a lot of time correcting the lies, spin,and the junk pseudo-science used by the corrupt GMO pesticide industry to try and keep their genocidal technology from being banned.

            I have seen you try to set up some straw-man arguments to deflect from the facts to try and spin the industry narrative.

            If you don’t like my communication style don’t respond to me. I have seen enough of your act to know that you are disingenuous and duplicitous.

          • Roundup hit the market in 1974 when the world population was 4 billion. GMOs were first sold in 1994 when the population was 5.6 billion. Today the world is home to 7.3 billion people and the population is expected to grow to 9.7 billion by 2050.

            If GMOs are “genocidal technologies” they’re not very good ones.

          • razorjack

            Nobody knows because there has been no science done that shows that long term consumption of GMOs are safe for humans.

            We need some real science and not more PR designed spin and disinformation.

            I’m looking for Independent chronic toxicity studies, done to deduce toxicology in humans, minimum of 3 mammalian species (rodents, pigs, dogs or monkeys) multi generational, that indicates safety in the long-term consumption of GMOs and their associated pesticides. One other caveat, they must be a GM varieties currently on the market today

            Come back and talk to me when you can show me some real meaningful independent science and not the same old industry junk pseudo-science cult ideology that must be protected from real science and the truth at all costs.

          • 7.3 billion earthlings say you’re wrong about that genocidal technology dig. And your response is to claim you’re for “real science?”

            Lay off the chronic, dude.

          • SageThinker

            Lay off the abusive personal attacks, Richard.

          • razorjack


            Bile duct cancer, Kidney and renal pelvic cancer, urinary bladder cancer, thyroid cancer, not only that but also hypertension, stroke, obesity, diabetes, renal disease, inflammatory bowel disease, intestinal infection, autism, alzheimer’s , and parkinson’s. All of these have increased dramatically since cancer causing Roundup laden GMOs were introduced with out any long term safety testing and purposely hidden from us in the food supply.

            The nations largest health care organization sent a newsletter to their patients. In that newsletter was an article by one of their nutritionists who explained GMOs and then told the patients to avoid them so as to not degrade their health. The health care organization had no “official” policy on GMOs because of the politics, but it cared enough about the concerns of it’s medical staff, it’s patients, and it’s bottom line to send out the warning.

            There have been no long term independent studies of the health effects of GMOs on human health. Many health care organizations are recognizing that severe unexplainable symptoms that are being reported by their patients get better when GMOs are removed from their diet.

            The New England Journal of Medicine has come out for mandatory labeling. They say:

            “Finally, we believe the time has come to revisit the United States’
            reluctance to label GM foods. Labeling will deliver multiple benefits.
            It is essential for tracking emergence of novel food allergies and
            assessing effects of chemical herbicides applied to GM crops. It would respect the wishes of a growing number of consumers who insist they have a right to know what foods they are buying and how they were produced. And the argument that there is nothing new about genetic rearrangement misses the point that GM crops are now the agricultural products most heavily treated with herbicides and that two of these herbicides may pose risks of cancer. We hope, in light of this new information, that the FDA will reconsider labeling of GM foods and couple it with adequately funded, long-term postmarketing surveillance.”

          • I think we all know that organic food is the cause of our current ailments. The correlation is undeniable.

          • razorjack

            Total nonsense.

            The New England Journal of Medicine is one of the most prestigious scientific journals on the planet. They have an amazing editorial staff that thorough vetted anything that appears in the journal.

            Your chart is a bogus false equivalency. It is obvious you know nothing about statistics or you wouldn’t have posted this drivel.

            Any statistics expert will tell you that the chance of organic food, which is only 4% of food sales, correlating with the increase in diseases is next to zero.

            The correlation of cancer causing Roundup laden GMOs has a very high probability.

          • razorjack

            You have linked to an industry astroturf site run by Andrew Kniss who is a who is a well known PR Monsanto asset in the same vein as disgraced liar and Monsanto shill Kevin Folta and Bruce Chassy.

          • That’s an appropriate response to organic industry lobbyist Chuck Benbrook:

            ““If you spend enough time with skunks, you start to smell like one,” said Charles M. Benbrook, who until recently held a post at Washington State University. The organic foods industry funded his research there and paid for his trips to Washington, where he helped lobby for labels on foods with genetically modified ingredients.”


          • razorjack

            Yes, Richard, we can all smell the scent of skunk on you.

          • I was thinking that the weed you smoke has that skunk scent. It’s the kind that promotes conspiratorial thinking.

          • razorjack

            Trolling, Flagged

          • Debbie Owen

            When you aren’t able to spin the facts you cry conspiracy. Obviously you aren’t fooling anyone here.

          • BTW, thanks for citing that Healthwise report that Kaiser included in a newsletter last summer. I’ve lodged a complaint with Kaiser and with Healthwise about its inaccuracies.

            Main problem: all good contains chemicals.

            Second problem: it wasn’t written by Kaiser nutritionists, it’s from an unrelated company and carries the disclaimer that it’s not medical advice.

          • razorjack

            I suspect they put your complaint with the rest of the crank mail from the corrupt GMO pesticide industry disinformation echo chamber goon squad members.

            Nobody cares what you think, but here is what a Kaiser representative actually said.

          • “Kaiser Permanente believes the ongoing research and debate on bioengineered foods, or genetically modified organisms (GMOs), is important. We also recognize there are important conversations about related initiatives and propositions. While we believe these are important scientific and political debates, we do not have policy positions on these subjects.”

          • razorjack

            You disingenuously took the quote out of context, Richard. I have reproduced it in full here.

            Why do you try and spin hide the words that don’t support your claims?

            “We believe it is important to share information with our members on a
            wide range of topics related to health care and health, but we do not
            take an organizational position on every issue,” the statement reads.
            “Kaiser Permanente believes the ongoing research and debate on
            bioengineered foods, or genetically modified organisms (GMOs), is
            important. We also recognize there are important conversations about
            related initiatives and propositions.”

          • Thanks for bringing this up. I complained to Kaiser and to Healthwise about the article on shopping for “chemical-free” food that HW wrote and Kaiser sent to its members. Healthwise has agreed to retract if from their database and Kaiser is reviewing it. If you have any more examples like that, I’ll be glad to get the corrections made.

          • razorjack

            Humorous that you think you can somehow spin away the truth I posted here by complaining to someone about your fear of their statement.

            The facts are the facts and everything I said was true.

          • This is what they said: “Dear Richard,

            We received your concerns about our Quick Tips: Shopping for Organic and Chemical-Free Foods. It is important that our content is meeting the needs of our consumers, so we appreciate hearing from you.

            I forwarded your feedback to the Healthwise Content Team. After reviewing the materials, they will remove the topic “Quick Tips: Shopping for Organic and Chemical-Free Foods” (abo6495) from future versions of the Knowledgebase.

            Thank you for contacting Healthwise, a nonprofit organization that produces consumer health information to help people make better health decisions. We license our information to organizations including hospitals, health plans, and Web portals.

            Best of health,


          • razorjack

            Humorous that you think you can somehow spin away the truth I posted here by complaining to someone.

            The facts are the facts and everything I said was true.

          • Right, Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny both agree with you.

          • razorjack

            I wasn’t aware that Santa Claus and the Easter bunny were posting here.

            Others do agree with the facts I have posted here.

          • GMO hating isn’t about science, it’s a religious thing, just like anti-vax, global warming denial, and quack medicine. Slate has a good article about it:

          • razorjack

            It is the ignorance imposed by your rigid false beliefs that cause you to make such and egotistical generalized ignorant statement.

          • I defer to your practitioner’s expertise in the ignorance field, Ted.

          • razorjack

            Who’s ted and why are you not responding to ted?

          • Debbie Owen

            That’s a ridiculous argument, roundup wasn’t used nearly as much in 1974 as it is now. The use of roundup has greatly increased since GMOs were snuck into our food supply in the mid 90’s and the rates of GI disorders and allergies have also greatly increased during that time.

          • Debbie Owen

            I don’t think you know the difference between conspiracy and fact. I repeat, the EFSA not only considered peer reviewed studies, they also considered non-peer reviewed, industry funded studies that are kept hidden from the public. That means they are less credible than the IARC. Read SageThinker’s posts and learn something.

          • razorjack


            The studies can be obtained under the FOIA act and they come with a requirement that they can not be republished or transmitted to others. You can discuss the studies that is all.

            Make your FOIA request and you will get the proof that shows Debbie is right.

          • It’s actually her obligation to support her own argument, not mine.

          • razorjack

            You don’t make the rules here. This is not some carnival game.

          • Debbie Owen

            It’s not just my argument, it’s facts you can’t dispute and readers can see that for themselves. Obviously you know that the studies are hidden and you can’t/won’t access them through an FOIA request. I wouldn’t even try to submit the request just to prove something to a pro-GMO activist. The fact that the studies are not peer reviewed and kept hidden from the public and independent scientists is all I need to know to understand that those so-called studies should never have even been considered by any of the regulatory agencies. The truth isn’t on the side of pro-GMO, that’s why you are so desperate to deflect from the facts and spin the truth.

          • Actually, Debbie, you’ve offered zero evidence for your position. Rather, you’ve offered speculations about secret research, conspiracies, and rage. Here’s some evidence on regulatory assessment of glyphosate:


            Have a ball.

          • razorjack

            See below…

          • SageThinker

            Debbie, i can however provide a bit of the data from the secret studies as revealed in the shady 1991 EPA memo. See the image. And the industry’s disinformation machine has been documented broadly, including Eric Lipton’s article in the New York Times on Sept 5, 2015 and the whole email trail revealed by the FOIA requests by USRTK. This is provable stuff. We just need enough people to know about it. Monsanto must fall and the whole industry must be opened up to public scrutiny for the public good. There is far too much risk of horrible crimes in process now that are killing us with slow poisoning.

          • Debbie Owen

            Thank you for that information.

    • razorjack

      Monsanto’s own scientists told them Roundup/glyphosate caused cancer over 35 years ago. Instead of disclosing that fact, they called the science “inconvenient” and hid the science away from other scientists, the courts, and the people as a trade secret while at the same time telling us it was safe.

      Dr Brian John says: “In 1981 both Monsanto and the EPA were already aware of malignant tumours and pre-cancerous conditions in the test animals which were fed small doses of glyphosate in the secret feeding experiments (4). Although concerns were expressed at the time by EPA committees, these concerns were later suppressed while Monsanto was allowed to bring forward a range of cynically manipulated and fraudulent studies purporting to show that glyphosate was harmless (2). None of these studies has been made available for independent examination. That is a scandal in itself. There has been a protracted and cynical cover-up in this matter. Monsanto and the EPA have been fully aware of the carcinogenic potential of glyphosate for at least 35 years. If they had acted in a precautionary fashion back then, instead of turning a blind eye to scientific malpractice, glyphosate would never have been licensed, and hundreds of thousands of lives might have been saved.” ”

      • Roundup is a herbicide, not a GMO. Roundup has been used by conventional farmers since 1974, long before there were GMOs. The evidence that it imparts carcinogenicity on crops is non-existent.

        The fears that motivated IARC to assess glyphosate a “probable carcinogen” are centered on its potential (and largely unassessed) effects on farm workers, not diners. If you can show some peer reviewed research to the contrary I’m happy to look at it, but I’m not wasting any more time on organic industry blogs.

        • Debbie Owen

          Where in razorjack’s comment did he claim Roundup is GMO? Roundup may not be GMO but they now go hand in hand. Since GMOs were snuck into our food supply in the mid 90s, the use of roundup has greatly increased. And can you prove that it was “fears” that motivated the IARC to assess glyphosate as a probable carcinogen? They based their assessment on peer reviewed studies, do you not trust the peer reviewed studies? It’s better than regulatory agencies considering secret industry funded studies that aren’t even peer reviewed.

        • razorjack

          Most all major GMO crops were designed to sell more Roundup/glyphosate because they were designed to be cultivated with this cancer causing pesticide.

          Roundup/glyphosate was a small part of herbicide sales until GMOs were released without any independent safety testing. Since GMOs were introduced it has become the largest selling pesticide on the planet.

          The IARC was motivated by the science and not the fear you would like to imply.

          I’ll pay attention to what the IARC says and look at the studies.

          WHO Glyphosate Report Ends Thirty Year Cancer Cover Up

          Glyphosate herbicide induces genotoxic effect and physiological disturbances in Bulinus truncatus snails


          Death as a Drug Side Effect in FAERS: Is Glyphosate Contamination a Factor?

          Chronic Kidney Failure 5 Times Higher in Glyphosate-Ridden (Monsanto Roundup) Areas, Study Confirms

          Ethoxylated adjuvants of glyphosate-based herbicides are active principles of human cell toxicity

          Glyphosate induces human breast cancer cells growth via estrogen receptors

          Glyphosate affects the spontaneous motoric activity of intestine at very low doses

          Glyphosate-based herbicides are toxic and endocrine disruptors in human cell lines

          An acute exposure to glyphosate-based herbicide alters aromatase levels in testis and sperm nuclear quality

          A step further toward glyphosate-induced epidermal cell death: Involvement of mitochondrial and oxidative mechanisms

          A glyphosate-based herbicide induces necrosis and apoptosis in mature rat testicular cells in vitro, and testosterone decrease at lower levels

          Studies on glyphosate-induced carcinogenicity in mouse skin: A proteomic approach

          Mechanisms underlying the neurotoxicity induced by glyphosate-based herbicide in immature rat hippocampus: Involvement of glutamate excitotoxic

          The herbicide glyphosate causes behavioral changes and alterations in dopaminergic markers in male Sprague-Dawley rat

          Glyphosate-induced stiffening of HaCaT keratinocytes, a Peak Force Tapping study on living cells

          Glyphosate (Roundup) Carcinogenic In the PARTS PER TRILLION Range

          • Link dumping is a poor form of argument because analysis generally indicates that the link targets don’t support the claims made by advocates. The proper way to discuss science is to go study-by-study with not simply a cherry picked (or made up) conclusion but a careful analysis of the methodology, the findings, and the questions for further research.

            I see a preference for pay-to-play journals in your link dump, which doesn’t do much for your credibility, anonymous commenter. Big Organic and its friendly front groups rely heavily on sciencey-looking pay to play journals to publish studies that are not peer-reviewed in order to cloud the debate.

          • razorjack

            Smart readers will make up their own mind about what I have written.

            Your opinions are your choice, but that doesn’t give them any more validity than the claims of an industry PR operative out to spin the narrative to benefit the industry.

            Personally, I don’t care what you think,because I have seen your act before.

          • Monsanto’s last commercially relevant United States patent on Roundup expired in 2000. Since most glyphosate is now made by Chinese companies, Monsanto has very little interest in boosting Roundup sales and therefore has no new Roundup-Ready seeds in the regulatory pipeline.

            Genetic engineering has been used to give plants better nutritional profiles (added vitamin A in rice, banana, and cassava;) better virus resistance (ringspot-resistant papaya, virus resistant squash;) insect resistance (Bt corn, soy, cotton, eggplant, and sugar beet;) drought tolerance (corn and soy;) reduced browning (apples;) reduced levels of inherent toxins (potato;) and to allow tomatoes to ripen on the vine (FlavrSavr.)

            Herbicide tolerance is an important trait to farmers but it’s hardly the main story. Rather that repeating organic industry talking points why don’t you go read some science?

          • razorjack

            Spare us the discussion of your vapor ware GMOs.

            Bt corn creates a pesticide in every cell of the GMO plant. This pesticide is not counted in the statistics on pesticide use.

            Farmers have been duped into think that bt cuts down on pesticide loads. They ignore the fact that we must include the Bt endotoxin load itself. Of course the corrupt GMO pesticide industry disinformation echo chamber $hills and their media stenographers always omit this massive pesticide load when they parrot the line about “less pesticide”. But according to the calculations of Charles Benbrook (p.6), based on data from corporate submissions to the regulators,
            SmartStax maize (which Monsanto touts as the normative baseline Bt maize product at this point) generates an average Bt endotoxin load of 4.2 kilograms per hectare, 19 times the application rate of conventional sprayed insecticides in 2010. So acre for acre SmartStax deploys pesticide at 19 times the rate which the “less pesticide” lie implies is the total application. How’s that for accounting fraud? Benbrook finds that in general Bt endotoxins equal or exceed the amount of sprayed insecticides displaced. In fact, just as with neonics, to the extent any spraying is displaced, that’s only because it’s replaced by other poisons such as the Bt toxins.

          • Thanks for bringing this up because it’s a good example of the problems with organic industry lobbyist Chuck Benbrook’s analysis. In the first place, Bt is not something anyone should fear. It’s approved for organic farming and is probably the most widely used insecticide in the world. Bt is a soil microbe that disrupts the digestive system of caterpillars and has no effect on vertebrates. It’s much better than the Rotenone also used by organic farmers that’s toxic to fish.

            The Bt in a GMO corn, cotton, or soy plant is concentrated in the seeds and doesn’t spread on its own. Its purpose is to kill caterpillars that would otherwise eat the parts of the plant that are sold. Since the introduction of Bt cotton in India, cotton production as increased 90% and farmer suicides have declined. Bt brinjal (eggplant to you westerners) has increased yields in Bangla Desh in a similar fashion.

            The alternative to Bt cotton and eggplant is spraying, which eggplant farmers were doing 80 – 100 times a year, sometimes multiple times in one day. So even if GMO Bt plants concentrated 19 times as much as a single spray, there’s less Bt per season in a field with GMO Bt than with sprayed Bt. GMO Bt doesn’t attack your Monarch butterflies since it’s inside plants that Monarchs don’t eat.

            So it’s much, much better to put Bt in the plant than to spray it on the plant (and the surrounding field.)

            Do you see why this is the case?

          • razorjack

            It’s nonsense.

            The bt that is sometimes used on organic crops and other is applied to the outside of the plant and can be easily washed off.

            The GMO bt is part of every cell of the plant and and can’t be washed off. It blows free in the pollen which lands on the plants other insects like the monarch butterfly consume and is in he residue which continues to kill after the plants are harvested.

            Benbrooks credentials are far superior to that of an internet industry PR dis-info operative.

          • I see you’re ignoring the question of multiple sprayings of Bt in favor of an oft-repeated talking point about its possible effects on Monarchs. You should see what the author of the study on Bt corn pollen and Monarch caterpillars in the lab had to say about it. Here’s part of his statement:

            “Says John E. Losey, Cornell assistant professor of entomology and the primary investigator on the study: “We need to look at the big picture here. Pollen from Bt-corn could represent a serious risk to populations of monarchs and other butterflies, but we can’t predict how serious the risk is until we have a lot more data. And we can’t forget that Bt-corn and other transgenic crops have a huge potential for reducing pesticide use and increasing yields. This study is just the first step, we need to do more research and then objectively weigh the risks versus the benefits of this new technology.”


            It kinda loses something in the translation to your account, doesn’t it? A couple of details: corn pollen only goes about 60 yards away from the source; the amount of corn pollen to kill a single caterpillar is unknown, but probably more than would occur in one place in nature.

            People on your side generally blame the Monarch’s periodic declines on Roundup and habitat loss, you might want to follow them.

          • razorjack

            Thanks for all the industry spin.

            Fortunately none of it changes the actual facts, no matter how hard you try to to spin your industry junks pseudo-science propaganda

          • I’m quoting the investigator who did the study that underlies the claim you spun. If I’m doing anything here, I’m de-spinning your spin. The investor, Dr. Losey, speaks for himself.

          • razorjack

            Cornell has been comprised by the over 5 million dollar arrangement with the Gates Foundation to set up a propaganda GMO research and outreach center.

            No sale.

          • By rejecting Cornell’s research as part of the man’s conspiracy to keep you down, you’ve just invalidated the sole foundation of your claim that Bt corn pollen might be harmful to unlucky Monarch butterflies. Did you mean to do that?

          • razorjack

            I have not rejected Cornell’s research. I reject the PR designed stuff hat comes out of the Gates funded project designed to deceive Americans about the GMO pesticide issues.

          • SageThinker

            Doesn’t matter, Richard — Monsanto profits from glyphosate and from the Roundup Ready seeds for which it still holds the IP license… it’s their flagship product combo, and indeed, their own data shows that it causes pancreatic and thyroid tumors in rats. Stout and Ruecker (1990) as revealed in the 1991 EPA memo called “Glyphosate and Cancer”.

          • The telling stats in that table are under the zero dose column. Sprague-Dawley rats spontaneously form tumors, as the data show. Is there a correlation of dose and tumor incidence? Nope. That’s what the report concludes. Go read it:

          • SageThinker

            The report’s “conclusions” are an industry favor from a captured agency. Three of th toxicologists on the staff did not sign it and did not concur. I have read it. This is essentially a memo that says 2+2=5. It’s an Orwellian big lie. But it shows the actual data. The point about SD rats and spontaneous tumors is invalid because there was a control group. That’s the purpose of a control group. So simple. And yes, there is a seriously visible correlation. It’s not positively monotonic but this is not a requirement for showing a correlation. This is basic toxicology. If you exceed a maximum effect threshold then you will see a flatline or sometimes even a slight decrease at higher doses. The effect is there and is serious. More tumors in rats exposed to glyphosate, by 6.5-fold.

          • Yet the scientists highlight the lack of a dose-related trend in the data. Inconvenient.

          • SageThinker

            Industry-friendly scientists do so as a favor to the industry. Three of the EPA staff toxicologists refused to sign the EPA memo. The “lack of a dose-related trend” is incorrect. There is a dose-related trend. Those rats with not glyphosate had 1 tumor whereas those rats exposed to glyphosate averaged 6.5 tumors, and the results were indeed statistically significant by the definition p<0.05, and were also alarming even if the p value were higher, for one cannot see this data and think "it's not compound related"….. i use the word Orwellian advisedly because it's a true case of "doublethink". It self-delusion.

          • But…they didn’t find a single carcinoma in the glyphosate rats!

          • SageThinker

            They found plenty of pancreatic adenomas and thyroid adenomas. And let’s take a look at the same data in Greim (2015). I count a total of 5 thyroid C cell carcinomas in the glyphosate rats and zero in the control group rats. Acknowledge this? This is the data.


          • Still not a significant level of carcinoma, but the control group is cleaner.

          • SageThinker

            Full citation? Greim (2015) is generally enough in the field, but here you go:

            Greim, Helmut, et al. “Evaluation of carcinogenic potential of the herbicide glyphosate, drawing on tumor incidence data from fourteen chronic/carcinogenicity rodent studies.” Critical reviews in toxicology 45.3 (2015): 185-208.

            And of course, the data is from Stout and Ruecker (1990). That is of course an unpublished Monsanto study that is not available to see except for those in the inner circle of Monsanto.

            And yeah, i would call 5 cases in 180 rats “significant” in terms of thyroid cancer caused by glyphosate, would you not? Significant enough for concern wouldn’t you think?

            Greim followed the 1991 EPA memo in the weasel explanation to sweep the data under the rug. Greim is a Monsanto-aligned study. It’s why i say that industry “science” is non-science.


          • Oh, that one.

            “Summary: A new scientific publication examining 14 separate cancer studies in rats and mice conducted over the last several decades concludes that there is no evidence that glyphosate, the active ingredient in Roundup branded herbicides, causes cancer. The article, in Critical Reviews in Toxicology, evaluated the data from these long-term studies to determine whether there were any patterns to suggest humans exposed to glyphosate would have any concern about developing cancer. Other scientifically relevant information such as expert regulator evaluations, human dietary exposures and epidemiological studies were also discussed. The clear and consistent view across more than 30 years of relevant information continues to support the first expert opinions from the 1980s, that glyphosate does not cause cancer.”

            Yeah, doesn’t make your case either.

          • SageThinker

            It makes my case that Greim (2015) is clearly an industry-aligned piece of non-science propaganda. It poses as a “review article” but it’s in an industry-captured journal and it reads like a brochure for glyphosate. It’s pure propaganda, bought and paid for by the industry. You know it. You are a global warming denier in other clothes.

          • Right, I’m part of the global conspiracy to use science in public policy. Global warming denialists, anti-evolutionists, GMO phobics, net neutralists, Internet music pirates, and vaccine fear mongers are on the other side.

            Sorry for your loss (if there was one,) but that doesn’t give you the right to spread BS and behave like a jackass.

          • SageThinker

            I’m speaking truth in every word i write and i write from the heart. Yes there was a loss and there were many more losses among many other people and communities. There are human costs to the industry you defend. They lie and people die. You are the one who would be the burrito here.

          • Sage is an anti-vaxer and a chemtrail conspiracy theorist who has been blocked from editing wiki pages. He really is a pitiful character.

          • That explains a lot, thanks.

          • SageThinker

            No, Captain is a stalker and abusive and pathological liar and completely in alignment with the agrochemical industry. I am saying things that are actual and real. He is the sort of character who defends the chemical industry’s crimes. It’s natural, as the industry is self-selecting for sociopaths.

          • Sage is lying. Half or more of the rats used in these studies develop spontaneous tumours. Sage has no understanding of statistics or study design.

          • SageThinker

            I know that adenomas often proceed to carcinomas, and i know that pancreatic cancer is a rare but very fatal form of cancer in humans, and i know that the rate has increased since the widespread use of glyphosate on our food.

          • But the scientists found zero carcinomas in the glyphosate-fed rats but two percent in the non-glyphosate rats. That means glyphosate protects rats from cancer. That’s pretty cool for the rats.

    • sir_ken_g


      • Lovely argument, very thought-provoking. Thanks for sharing.

      • StopGMO


  • diannep

    Mr Bennett, perhaps you truly believe what you preach about the wonders of Monsanto.
    When I decided to drop GE foods, it was a process of my changing my diet to gain back my health. I believed that I was all about my gut and so the research began.
    Five years later, and the wonders of eating right, changed my outlook on food and bettered my health. I stopped eating added sugar and aspartame (Monsanto garbage). It was easier to drop corn, soy, canola and wheat, derivatives included. My doctor said keep doing what I am doing. I will admit, watching Seralini’s rats on youtube after 2 years of eating bt corn was very persuasive to my decision. Monsanto has a wicked history which actually got me started in finding out all I can about this EVIL entity.

    • Genetic engineering isn’t simply a Monsanto thing, it’s a major world-wide technology trend that is vital to feeding a growing population. If you want to hate on Monsanto for what you imagine its history to be, go right ahead. But rejecting GE because you’re afraid of Monsanto is like rejecting transportation because you don’t like SUVs.

      The first generation of GMO foods were aimed at increasing productivity for animal feeds like corn and soy. This was necessary because of the high regulatory costs. Second and third generation GMOs are more attuned to increasing nutrition and resisting the environmental effects of climate change.

      There’s really no alternative to genetic engineering, but Whole Foods and Vitamin Cottage customers can afford to live in their organic bubble for a few more years if they wish. The people of Africa, South America, and most of Asia don’t have that luxury.

      So good luck with your First World issues.

      • AgroforestryTBD

        Hahahahaha comedy gold!

        Please elaborate on what made you believe this…

        • You’ll have to clarify your issue, if possible.

          • AgroforestryTBD

            many of those countries you mention are overridden with corruption and financial incentives. It’s extremely biased to believe that GMOs feed the hungry. It’s the corrupt land owners and people who want to rape, enslave, and control the general public. I’ve spoken directly to these “poor” people who are absolutely angered by China and other countries industrializing their lands. Slamming such convenient and misinformed policies.

            Why are you pushing such financial ideologies when these foods are going to increase healthcare needs and reliance to someone providing food for them?

          • Because seeing people starve makes me sad. I’ve spent a significant part of my live in third world countries and have some of that old-fashioned compassion stuff. I also think Whole Foods is a rotten business.

          • AgroforestryTBD

            Yea I don’t really shop there. Only for certain products when needed or convenient. I can respect that. See you around, sir.

          • I’m not that enthusiastic about the first generation, transgenic GMOs either, but you’ve got to start somewhere.

            Personally, I think the CRISPR stuff that edits genes in place is very cool, very cheap, and free of the regulatory overhead on transgenics. We’ve lost a lot of nutrition on our plants over the last 100 years due to breeding tradeoffs in favor productivity at the expense of flavor and nutrition. I think we can have it all in future varieties made with CRISPR, so I don’t want to foreclose the potential progress.

            Most cheese is made from GMO rennet already and most insulin is also GE. Nobody seems to be suffering from either.

          • SageThinker

            You are a sick industry apologist. I have been around the world and i have seen people feeding themselves very well with non-GMO crops and no chemicals. I have lived in the mountains of Nepal where there has not been a famine for a century and people know what and how to eat. You are an apologist parroting the memes invented by PR copywriters to defend a sick industry. You are like a climate change denialist. But worse.

          • Sage says:

            I have lived in the mountains of Nepal where there has not been a famine for a century …

            According to the United Nations, the mountain people in Nepal are poor, malnourished, stunted, mostly illiterate and often hungry. These people are so poor that they sell their own children as indentured labour, which often results in physical and sexual abuse.


          • SageThinker

            According to me, who has lived there for several years, people are well and healthy in the place where i lived. Not saying there isn’t variation and poverty. There is — some villages have undernourished people, but that’s due to caste oppression in large part and inequality of access to resources — not lack of GMOs.

          • Superior Intellect

            razorjack, captainmoonlight, bouldercommonsense, agscienceliterate, and all the rest are paid biotech trolls working for CropLife America, the trade association for the pesticide industry. Their members are Monsanto, Dow, Syngenta, Bayer, DuPont, etc. CropLife America is an international lobbyist and hires these trolls to bury the lead and create chaos.

          • BluNos

            What, pray tell, is the population density of “the mountains of Nepal? I would hazard a guess of one millionth of China. I find it ludicrous that people in the third world are starving to death, and you would deny them food. I would wager you that if told that the food they were about to eat could cause cancer in 20-30 years, they would eat. Then they would ask for more!
            On a secondary note, the problem with this planet is the infestation known as the human race. What this world needs is an old fashioned world war. It’s been 70 years since the last one.

          • SageThinker

            Oh, “pray tell” .. stopped reading.

      • SageThinker

        GMOs are absolutely NOT needed to feed people. That’s a lie. A complete lie.

        • Superior Intellect

          our many thanks for exposing these biotech trolls who keep commenting everywhere you comment. razorjack, captainmoonlight, bouldercommonsense, agscienceliterate, and all the rest are paid biotech trolls working for CropLife America, the trade association for the pesticide industry. Their members are Monsanto, Dow, Syngenta, Bayer, DuPont, etc. CropLife America is an international lobbyist and hires these trolls to bury the lead and create chaos.

  • SageThinker

    Where i live, the river is polluted by Monsanto’s PCBs, sold to G.E. who dumped it into the Housatonic River for many years. People have died as a result of Monsanto’s lies and GE’s crime of dumping the toxic chemicals. And the river is a ghost of a river. You cannot eat fish or ducks or swim in it. It is beautiful but like a ghost screaming of the evil of Monsanto and GE. The evil of greed, of lying to people while poisoning them, just for a vacation home or a new Caddy. Not acceptable. These are crimes against humanity. In the recent rains, i saw the glyphosate (Roundup) covered corn fields near the river submerged in the floodplain and i know that molecules of glyphosate got into the same river that’s already been killed by Monsanto 50 years ago. When does it end? Look at this image from the Chemical Industry Archives website. You can see their priorities. We need to cut through their disinformation and get real. We need to open them up and see their current files on glyphosate. Their own data from 1990 shows that it causes pancreatic and thyroid tumors. Yet they create industry-aligned non-science to support its safety and they hide behind plausible deniability. Evil is the right word for this.

    • Monsanto’s chemical division made PCBs when they were not only legal but mandated. It was spun off as a new company, Solutia, in 1997. Monsanto’s seed division was formed from the acquisition of Calgene and others in the mid-90s, and spun off as a separate company in 2000. The rest of Monsanto – the pharmaceutical business – is now part of Pfizer. The link between today’s Monsanto – a seed company – and the PCB and Agent Orange manufacturer is pretty thin.

      But who cares about details when there’s a capitalist to bash, right?

      • SageThinker

        Bull. Crap. Monsanto is Monsanto. They need to pay for their crimes. They are they. A is A. They did it while they were developing glyphosate. Bull. Crap.

        • SageThinker

          They are liable, and they are the ones who sold the PCBs knowing that they were poison, and today there was a memorial service for a young man who was amazing but is DEAD now, you piece of shiess. You are defending a murderous company and industry, and you are lower than a snake in the grass, lower than a snake even in hell for suggesting this. You are evasive. The abuser who denies abusing. The gaslighter. You are the lowest form of human possible on the Earth. You crossed a line.

        • I looked up Monsanto in Wikipedia. I suggest you do the same.

          • SageThinker

            You are the lowest form of human life. I WROTE the article about Monsanto on Wikipedia and i know without looking it up who Theodore Swann is, and that he died poor selling aluminum window frames. It’s in my mind, you low life. Look it up. I know the story. I know the evil. I see it clearly. You are the lowest thing possible. Uplift yourself. Many people cried TODAY over the death of a man a year ago from PCBs exposure from LIES for PROFITS in the 1960s and 1970s. You are supporting and defending the crimes of the worst people on the planet. You are aiding and abetting the evasion of responsibility and justice. You are sick.

          • You seem upset.

          • SageThinker

            Yeah you piece of cow dung, would you be upset if your loved one or community member died because of the lies of a company that someone is defending with more lies? Like i said you belong in the lower realms of hell.

          • Yes, definitely upset.

          • SageThinker

            I suggest you look up Swann Chemical Company, and i suggest you read some books on the topic. Did you know that Theodore Swann at one time had the biggest and most expensive house in Birmingham? And did you know he died sad and poor and alone selling aluminum window frames after Monsanto bought out Swann and sold PCBs which resulted in the young man dying last year for which the woman near me is crying right NOW? Do you know how extremely sick the situation is and that YOU can put yourself right in the middle of it, and you’re acting as the agent of pure evil? You need to open your eyes you fool.

      • SageThinker

        They are liable, and they are the ones who sold the PCBs knowing that they were poison, and today there was a memorial service for a young man who was amazing but is DEAD now, you piece of shiess. You are defending a murderous company and industry, and you are lower than a snake in the grass, lower than a snake even in hell for suggesting this. You are evasive. The abuser who denies abusing. The gaslighter. You are the lowest form of human possible on the Earth. You crossed a line. You have entered the lower spirals of hell.

        • I’m defending the Calgene people who never had a thing to do with PCBs. If you want to punish the innocent, you’re on your own.

          • SageThinker

            You are a sick person. You are sicker than sick. You seem to have no conscience. PCBs were made in Anniston, Alabama by Monsanto Chemical and they were at the same time developing Roundup herbicide. They sold PCBs until the late 70s and the developed glyphosate in 1970. Ernest Jaworski’s paper came out in 1972 that showed that it kills bacteria at very low levels. This is Monsanto, the company that sold PCBs while knowing their extreme dangers, and at the same time was developing the glyphosate herbicide. And then hiding knowledge about the dangers of glyphosate. And still selling it. And now collapsing under the weight of its karma. Collapsing in slow motion.

          • SageThinker

            The company Monsanto made PCBs and sold them without disclosing the great dangers of which they knew, and they gained incredible amounts of capital through this, and are the very same company today. Without accountability there is no deterrence against similar crimes being committed today, and Monsanto is certainly committing such crimes today with glyphosate. Shall i also post Greim’s (2015) take on this data, which adds the fact that glyphosate-exposed rats developed 5 thyroid carcinomas, whereas the control group developed none? Yes, i will add that too.



      • SageThinker

        A woman is crying near me right NOW about the lost young man who is DEAD from the crimes that you are defending and evading. You are the lowest form of possible human being, the kind who defends those who sell liquid death for profit and lie about it.

        And you KNOW if you are close enough to the inner circles of Monsanto that there is a little “glyphosate problem” sort of like the “Aroclor problem” in the 1970s. Give it up.

  • Superior Intellect

    Sage Thinker, our many thanks for exposing these biotech trolls who keep commenting everywhere you comment. razorjack, captainmoonlight, bouldercommonsense, agscienceliterate, and all the rest are paid biotech trolls working for CropLife America, the trade association for the pesticide industry. Their members are Monsanto, Dow, Syngenta, Bayer, DuPont, etc. CropLife America is an international lobbyist and hires these trolls to bury the lead and create chaos.

  • There’s a good article in Slate about the religious nature of GMO-hating. I highly recommend it to anyone who’s interested in learning about this issue.