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Deleted with code "Other"
(by Robert
)
News :: Human Rights
BioDevestation2000 and Globalization
24 Mar 2000
There's been a lot of talk recently about A16. No, not the Warthog fighter jet, the April 16th demonstrations against the IMF and World Bank in Washington, DC. But, Warthogs may be an apt metaphor for the upcoming actions. The plane was designed to make a relatively undetected approach and have devastating results. I'm thinking of the WTO actions in Boston here. However, while the shadow cast by Boston is deep and long, I fear it is not very wide.
There's been a lot of talk recently about A16. No, not the Warthog fighter jet, the April 16th demonstrations against the IMF and World Bank in Washington, DC. But, Warthogs may be an apt metaphor for the upcoming actions. The plane was designed to make a relatively undetected approach and have devastating results. I'm thinking of the WTO actions in Boston here. However, while the shadow cast by Boston is deep and long, I fear it is not very wide.

As activists prepare for what will no doubt be the next major confrontation between grassroots democracy and those who would rule them, many are not connecting all the dots. How so? Well, the same players we saw at the WTO trying to dominate the economic and political apparatus of our world are also trying to control the foodchain. They've said as much! A few years back Monsanto CEO Robert Fraley was quoted thus: "What you're seeing is not just a consolidation of seed companies, it's really a consolidation of the entire food chain." If that doesn't give you a chill I suggest you give the matter some further consideration.

Some people giving such consideration have organized a counter-conference and series of demonstrations in Boston beginning on March 24th called Biodevastation 2000. The events coincide with the multinational genetic engineering industry's big yearly conference called Bio2000. The counter-conference is about who should be controlling our sources of food and medicine, about how such control effects us. Scientists and activists like Vandana Shiva and Ralph Nader will focus on the antidemocratic practices of the industry and an increasing inability of farmers to control their own livelihood, of shoppers to feel confident in the marketplace. Demonstrators in the streets will be sending the same message.

The Brave New World of genetic engineering does not just concern the ominous work of crossing nature's barriers between species, or concern humans as Creators as with cloning. It is also about global corporations and their friends in government dominating the very essence of life on Earth. It's about farmers being denied the right to save seeds for the next year's harvest; it's about consumers being denied the right to know what's in their food and medicine; it's about the safety of those products and the integrity of the environment if untested transgenetic materials escape the laboratories and test plots. And, it is also about the ethics of science, production, marketing and distribution of that food and medicine. Matters that once were more of less in your own hands, the hands of your neighbors, people you knew. Now, such decisions are being increasingly made by faceless corporations unaccountable to any government or its people, corporations for whom democracy is considered restraint of trade.

We can't possibly hope to turnback that corporate tide without confronting all its various manifestations, be it the WTO in Boston, the IMF and World Bank in DC, OR Bio 2000 in Boston.