So a long-time writer for the New Yorker (admit I’ve subscribed many a year!), Michael Specter, just dissed a heroine of mine – and I’m MAD! I work to be mellow in the face of stupidity – but this article does the dirty to basic principles of journalism: posing as a friendly, open-minded and highly literate guy, Mr. Snyder rips apart Shiva’s game plan and slops his own brand of muck on it so most people reading about India’s (and the planet’s!) farming woes can’t understand thousands of Indian farmer suicides and the desparate debt that causes this – are the direct result of the power of Monsanto Corporation and their mind-control sales pitch (use Monsanto products and grow more crops – THIS YEAR; now you are dependent on Monsanto forever! Just like the mean money lenders of old – Monsanto tells peasants they’re the saviors while pulling poor farmers into unending debt and later suicide!) Round Up Ready and Monsanto seed crops make farmers dependent on Monsanto – and in huge dept to the multi-billion company which is, unfortunately, deeply engrained even in our US Government. Do I need to repeat myself?
Genetically modified food stuffs (Monsanto seeds) can save the world? What? How about can cause a rash of disease symptoms and can kill off huge swaths of organic and native crops – possibly even kill off California’s organic crops entirely if their new wonder-product, Blue Grass takes over our land, killing off native plants! How about Monsanto Round Up is a chief cause of the death of 90% of the Monarch Butterflies we used to see so often! Gee, Michael Spector totally forgot to mention!
So now we have even the New Yorker, which I tend to credit, trying to tell us Vandana Shiva (and organic farming in general) lacks credibility – well, Mr. Specter, you neglected your due diligeance! Didn’t go with your subject when she offered to show you the lay of the land, her scientific and kind knowledge of farming and farmers in India – at a time when the planet is under incredible man-made stresses and cannot bear further messing with. Wrong time; wrong way, Jose!
I realize all this makes me angry and scared. Mr. Specter isn’t 100% wrong; he’s just wrong about something no one can afford to get wrong: our planet must soon house over 8 billion souls, then possibly 10 – a population to be hosted on a lot of burned-out dead land will result in famine and genocide. How did he miss – or ignore – the recent study by the United Nations showing SMALL SCALE ORGANIC FARMS are a key – or THE key – to the survival of mankind.
UN Report Says Small-Scale Organic Farming Only Way to Feed the World
Nick Meyer | AltHealthWORKS
Even as the United States government continues to push for the use of more chemically-intensive and corporate-dominated farming methods such as GMOs and monoculture-based crops, the United Nations is once against sounding the alarm about the urgent need to return to (and develop) a more sustainable, natural and organic system.
That was the key point of a new publication from the UN Commission on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) titled“Trade and Environment Review 2013: Wake Up Before It’s Too Late,” which included contributions from more than 60 experts around the world.
The cover of the report looks like that of a blockbuster documentary or Hollywood movie, and the dramatic nature of the title cannot be understated: The time is now to switch back to our natural farming roots.
The New UN Farming Report “Wake Up Before It’s Too Late.”
The New UN Farming Report “Wake Up Before It’s Too Late.” Click here to read it.
The findings on the report seem to echo those of a December 2010 UN Report in many ways, one that essentially said organic and small-scale farming is the answer for “feeding the world,” not GMOs and monocultures.
According to the new UN report, major changes are needed in our food, agriculture and trade systems, with a shift toward local small-scale farmers and food systems recommended.
Diversity of farms, reducing the use of fertilizer and other changes are desperately needed according to the report, which was highlighted in this article from the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy.
It also said that global trade rules should be reformed in order to work toward these ends, which is unfortunately the opposite of what mega-trade deals like the proposed Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) and the U.S.-EU Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) are seeking to accomplish.
The Institute noted that these pending deals are “primarily designed to strengthen the hold of multinational corporate and financial firms on the global economy…” rather than the reflect the urgent need for a shift in agriculture described in the new report.
Even global security may be at stake according to the report, as food prices (and food price speculating) continue to rise.
“This implies a rapid and significant shift from conventional, monoculture-based and high-external-input-dependent industrial production toward mosaics of sustainable, regenerative production systems that also considerably improve the productivity of small-scale farmers,” the report concludes.
You can read more about the report from the Institute by visiting their website here.
Tags: sustainable farming less fertilizers urban farming managing water water