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Rethinking How to Feed The World

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Mark Sullivan Avatar
Mark Sullivan
Posted: 02.10.10, 11:58 PM
A fascinating video. A few points. The gentleman and the woman from Africa made some of the most emphatic points - both in terms of the truths they detailed as well as the reasons why their suggestions cannot be taken seriously. -Free, open trade with no tarifs and no government subsidies of any kind is needed. The end consumer should be able to get the best food at the best prices, regardless of where it comes from, provided it is safe to eat. -Using food as fuel is, in my opnion, immoral, decadent and irresponsible. We have countless alternatives that are more efficient sources of potential energy, cost less and pollute less. Corn based ethanol is the worst, as many poor countries are forced to pay more for maize - a staple for many of them. -The goal that in 15 years there will be no malnourished children in the world is silly. It is not insignificant that this goal came from the mouths of the intellectual and the bureaucrat on the panel. This goal is not meaningful, measurable or specific. The business people on the panel came up with goals that are measurable, meaningful and specific and most importantly, will help accomplish the ends desired. -Until there is a stable, established and enforced Rule of Law, enforceable private property rights and societal stability and an educated work force, no large scale investment in Africa will occur. Why would anyone make a significant infrastructure investment in a country where the dictator or tribal paramilitary groups can expropriate the property at any time? The only answer to Africa's perpetual poverty, injustice and hunger is Individual Liberty, free markets and Rule of Law. -Agricultural (actually all business) subsidies must end. These protections harm the poorest among the world's citizens and make it harder for them to work their way up. -All of the problems that lead to hunger - production, subsidies, unfair trade, lack of private property rights - are caused by GOVERNMENTS. The idea that an unelected "Global" body could solve the hunger problem or specifically any of the issues raised is absurd and dangerous. Keep governments out of this with the exception of meeting the legitimate purposes of government (establish and enforce the Rule of Law, enforce private property rights and nurture societal stability) and trust in the ability of a free citizen to pursue excellence and prosperity.
joshuamikael Avatar
joshuamikael
Posted: 02.10.10, 10:44 PM
Atom299--the reporters worked for FOX news...I saw their interviews in the documentary film The Corporation...might have been on the extra features disc. The media is weak...they don't report the truth...news is cosmetic across the board, designed to distract and dilute.
Atom299 Avatar
Atom299
Posted: 02.10.10, 04:27 PM
@thirdeye3000 "Please post the reputable news source from which this was derived. (If it happened, even once, media would jump on this kind of front page story)." I don't know what planet you live on but there's no way such incidences would be jumped on or even mentioned by the media. The media are wholly in the pockets of the GM and other major companies to the extent that virtually nothing in the main stream media is true. The case of animal growth hormones which cause cancer, made by Monsanto, which wasn't allowed to be broadcast on (I think) CNN. Instead, the journalists who wanted to report it were sacked. This is just one of hundreds of cases which should alert you to just how the mainstream media works. Don't expect this to change any time soon.
salbers Avatar
salbers
Posted: 02.10.10, 01:37 PM
It is my understanding that this earth now supports over 6 billion people. The earth is a populous place right now. But another 1 million humans are being added every four days. This birth rate is far in excess of what the earth can support. Most of the forests have been chopped down for cultivation now. Until the disastrous population policies of the world are totally changed to zero population growth there is no hope. That is why population growth reduction needs to be on top of the agenda, not food production. Increasing food production alone will only serve to, once again, increase the birth rate and set the earth up for an inevitable future disaster of which there are countless micro-examples from the past.
Robert Rucker Avatar
Robert Rucker
Posted: 02.10.10, 01:00 PM
I'm sorry. I don't trust anyone who goes out in public to speak, and doesn't bother to groom his sleep hair.
joshuamikael Avatar
joshuamikael
Posted: 02.10.10, 10:36 AM
WOW! Let's look at this logically--wheat, for example, is not an ancient grain. It is a modern grain that has been created by humankind over several thousand years ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wheat ): http://books.google.com/books?id=DnM...age&q=&f=false Gluten is found in wheat. If many people the world over have gluten allergies and sensitivities because of an inability to process gluten, then it stands to reason that GMO crops being developed in a far shorter period of time (decades) may also lead to health issues. ANOTHER WAY TO LOOK AT THE ISSUE: In 2006, the Food & Agriculture (FAO) division of the United Nations conducted an exhaustive study ( Livestock's Long Shadow ) on global livestock production and its numerous highly negative effects on our one and only home planet. The FAO estimated that global livestock pollution accounted for 16% - 18% of all greenhouse gas sources in 2006, which put it at the top of the global pollutant list at that time...!!! Livestock's Long Shadow: http://www.fao.org/docrep/010/a0701e/a0701e00.HTM I recently attended a Q&A with NY Times best-selling author Jonathan Safran Foer, who wrote Eating Animals, and he stated in the Q&A that global livestock pollution (as of the end of 2009) is now projected at 51%, making it more responsible for global greenhouse gases than all other global emission sources combined. I view livestock production to be the predecessor of GMO produce crops, because animals have, since the onset of factory farming, been fed unnatural amounts of corn/grains to fatten them up for slaughter. If this approach to livestock farming has led to such an undesirable result--being responsible for HALF of the world's greenhouse gas emissions--then it stands to reason that excessive GMO farming of produce crops may also have dire and drastic negative effects on our world. http://books.google.com/books?id=DnM...age&q=&f=false TO TIE IT ALL IN: I seriously doubt all GMO foods are being grown to be fed directly to humans, as a vast amount of grain production IS FED TO LIVESTOCK to fatten them up for slaughter...which means that GMO farming will only further livestock pollution and harm our bodies and planet!!! - - - Mr. Gates--With all due respect, as one of our brightest and most influential individuals, I urge you to reconsider your stance on GMO food development. Organic farming methods can work at the local community level very successfully, and the world is nothing but local communities spread out across the earth. There is no reason a local, organic approach should be dismissed when GMO approaches in produce/livestock are likely to produce myriad negative effects on the human body and the earth's ecosystems.
AntiOligarch Avatar
AntiOligarch
Posted: 02.10.10, 05:38 AM
Bill Gates is a rotten, evil, sick individual. He's promoting vaccines with mercury and cancer causing GMOs. No wonder why one in three of us die from cancer.
Bukcic3 Avatar
Bukcic3
Posted: 02.09.10, 10:39 PM
The fact is that there are too many people to feed. Nature, itself, could not sustain us earlier in history...that's what lead to the agricultural revolution. Everyone is trying to stop global starvation, but currently the only way to even start to do so is to expand GMOs. Being a biologist, I know the benefits and consequences. I personally believe that the GMO business is incredibly dangerous and that stricter guidlines (especially ecological) should be introduced.
cutestain Avatar
cutestain
Posted: 02.07.10, 11:06 PM
If GMOs are about helping to feed the world, then why are the companies creating GMOs also creating terminator seeds? Clearly, GMOs are not going to help feed the world if the plants grown with them have seeds that in turn will not yield new plants. GMOs are about profits for corporations. Very sad to see Bill Gates supporting this with his non-profit.
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