I woke up this morning with a grim dream about America's dystopian future as the "food police" will come knocking on more and more people's doors.
Over the weekend, I read in The Week a shortened version of an article about life in Mendocino County, California, part of America's "Emerald Triangle," where two-thirds or more of the economy depends on the cultivation and sale of marijuana. So I'm sure that didn't help with my mental state this morning:
Unfortunately for those in the hills, the marijuana boom didn’t just bring disposable income; it also brought government helicopters. After a period of relative freedom in the late ’70s, risk caught up to reward, and growers found themselves the target of an immense, quasi-military task force called the Campaign Against Marijuana Planting (CAMP).Nor, of course, do videos like these about raids on farmers and raw food producers and distributors:
“When CAMP started up, they came into these areas really hard,” recalls Eugene “ED” Denson, a lawyer based in Humboldt County (and a former manager of the band Country Joe and the Fish). “They would make bases and be here for weeks. They would quite literally just start at the river and start walking up the mountain, seizing everything they’d find, going into all the homes, smashing all the canned goods in case there was anything hidden at the bottom of the jar—things like that—destroying musical instruments.
Backstory (from here):
On Monday, December 1, a SWAT team with semi-automatic rifles entered the private home of the Stowers family in LaGrange, Ohio, herded the family onto the couches in the living room, and kept guns trained on parents, children, infants and toddlers, from approximately 11 AM to 8 PM. The team was aggressive and belligerent. The children were quite traumatized. At some point, the bad cop SWAT team was relieved by another team, a good cop team that tried to befriend the family. The Stowers family has run a very large, well-known food cooperative called Manna Storehouse on the western side of the greater Cleveland area for many years.
There were agents from the Department of Agriculture present, one of them identified as Bill Lesho. The search warrant is reportedly suspicious-looking. Agents began rifling through all of the familys possessions, a task that lasted hours and resulted in a complete upheaval of every private area in the home. Many items were taken that were not listed on the search warrant. The family was not permitted a phone call, and they were not told what crime they were being charged with. They were not read their rights. Over ten thousand dollars worth of food was taken, including the familys personal stock of food for the coming year. All of their computers, and all of their cell phones were taken, as well as phone and contact records. The food cooperative was virtually shut down. There was no rational explanation, nor justification, for this extreme violation of Constitutional rights.
Presumably Manna Storehouse might eventually be charged with running a retail establishment without a license. Why then the Gestapo-type interrogation for a 3rd degree misdemeanor
charge? . . .
And so forth.
But when I got up, I found the bill has passed. And I'm lamenting the end of an era of freedom as our federal government grows increasingly totalitarian in nature.
While we're at it, and praying that the House of Representatives might actually block implementation of this draconian overreach of federal authority, I thought the following issues were well-summarized by Mike Adams of NaturalNews.com:
Top ten lies about Senate Bill 510 . . .Thanks to Mike Adams for giving permission to copy his article.
Here are the ten biggest lies that have been promoted about S.510 by the U.S. Congress, the food industry giants and the mainstream media:
Lie #1 - Most deaths from food poisoning are caused by fresh produce
Here's a whopper the mainstream media won't dare report: Out of the 1,809 people who die in America every year from food-borne pathogens (CDC estimate), only a fraction die from the manufacturer's contamination of fresh produce. By far the majority of food poisoning is caused by the consumption of spoiled processed foods, dead foods and animal-human transmission of pathogens.
For example, one of the largest food-borne killers according to the CDC is Toxoplasma gondii, a disease that people acquire from cat feces coming into contact with their food, which can happen right in their own homes (http://www.cdc.gov/ncidod/eid/Vol5n...). Salmonella poisoning accounts for 553 deaths a year. As a reference for relative risk, over 42,000 people die each year from road accidents in the USA, meaning driving a car has a roughly 7600% higher chance of killing you than eating fresh produce. (http://www.driveandstayalive.com/in...)
In terms of food-borne illness, many of the deaths come from things like spoiled tomato sauce, spoiled canned foods and spoiled pasteurized milk. S 510, of course, does absolutely nothing to address these food contamination deaths, since those foods are considered "sterilized" at the time of sale.
Lie #2 - Under S.510, the FDA would only recall products it knows to be contaminated
Not true. S.510 merely requires the FDA to have "reason to believe" a food is contaminated. So right there, that means all raw milk will be targeted by the FDA because even without conducting any scientific tests at all, the FDA can say it has "reason to believe" the milk is contaminated
. . .merely because it is raw.
In other words, the FDA no longer needs science to outlaw a food product. It merely needs an opinion.
Is this "reason to believe" section really true? Yep, and here's how it was amended:
SEC. 208. ADMINISTRATIVE DETENTION OF FOOD.
23 (a) IN GENERAL. - Section 304(h)(1)(A) (21 U.S.C.24 334(h)(1)(A)) is amended by
(1) striking ''credible evidence or information indicating'' and inserting ''reason to believe'';
In other words, in negotiating this bill, the U.S. Senate removed the requirement that the FDA needed "credible evidence" in order to recall a product and, instead, replaced that with the FDA only needing "reason to believe."
It is utterly amazing that the U.S. Congress would give the FDA to conduct large-scale product recalls and even imprison people based entirely on what the agency "has reason to believe."
Last time I checked, the FDA held some pretty bizarre (if not downright moronic) beliefs, including this jaw-dropping whopper: The FDA literally believes [JAH: Well, we can't know what they believe, really. But their policies require that no one is permitted to claim anything other than] that there is no food, no herb, no vitamin or supplement that has any ability to prevent disease of any kind. They don't even believe limes can prevent scurvy, and you'd have to be nutritionally illiterate to believe that.
The FDA believes [JAH: i.e., its policy dictates that no food producer or distributor is permitted to declare anything other than that] foods are inert and that all the amazing phytonutrients in those foods (carotenoids, antioxidants, therapeutic fats like omega-3 and so on) are utterly useless for human biology.
This belief, held by the FDA that has now been put in charge of the food supply, is the belief system of an insane government agency that has completely lost touch with reality while abandoning nutritional science.
Lie #3 - They didn't tell you that nearly 70% of grocery store chickens are contaminated with salmonella every day
Yep, it's true: Amid all the fear-mongering over salmonella, everybody forgot to notice that the vast majority of fresh chickens sold at grocery stores every single day are widely contaminated with salmonella (http://www.naturalnews.com/028661_c...). Yet S 510 does absolutely nothing to address this. It's not even mentioned in the bill.
In fact, it is these contaminated chickens that end up cross-contaminating the fresh produce in many kitchens across America. So the so-called "food poisoning" that's often blamed on spinach or onions often originates with the contaminated chicken meat people bring home and slice on their kitchen cutting boards.
Lie #4 - S.510 will exclude and protect small farmers
The Tester Amendment, which was finally included in S.510, excludes farmers who sell less than $500,000 worth of food each year from the more onerous paperwork and compliance burdens described in the bill. But this dollar amount is not indexed to inflation, meaning that as the U.S. dollar continues to lose value due to the Federal Reserve counterfeiting machine running at full speed (more "quantitative easing," anyone?), food prices will continue to skyrocket -- and this will shift even small family farms into the $500,000 sales range within just a few years.
In fact, a single-family farm with just four people could easily sell $500,000 worth of fresh produce a year right now, even before inflation. Remember, $500,000 is not their profit, but rather the gross sales amount. The profits on that might be only $50,000 or even less.
Furthermore, this $500,000 threshold means that small, successful farms that are doing well and would like to expand will refuse to hire more people or expand their operations. To avoid the tyranny of S 510, small farms will try to stay small, and that means avoiding the kind of business expansion that would create new jobs.
Lie #5 - The FDA needs more power to enforce food safety
The FDA already has the power to effectively recall foods by publicly announcing a product has been found to be contaminated. The FDA already has the power to confiscate "misbranded" products, too, and it could easily use this power to halt the sale of contaminated food items.
But the FDA simply refuses to enforce the laws already on the books and, instead, has sought to expand its power by hyping up the e.coli food scares. The ploy apparently worked: Now in a reaction to the food scare-mongering, the FDA is being handed not just new powers, but more funding, too! And you can bet it will find creative new ways to put this power to work suppressing the health freedoms and food freedoms of the American people.
Lie #6 - Fresh produce is contaminated because of a lack of paperwork
There is no evidence that requiring farms to fill out more paperwork will make their food safer. The real cause of produce contamination is the existence of factory animal farms whose effluent output (huge rivers of cow feces, basically), end up in the water supply, soils and equipment that comes into contact with fresh produce.
The food contamination problem is an UPSTREAM problem where you've got to reform the factory animal operations that now dominate the American meat industry. S.510, however, does absolutely nothing to address this. Factory animal farms aren't even addressed in the bill!
Lie #7 - The American people are dying in droves from unsafe fresh food
The truth is that Americans are dying from processed food laced with toxic chemical additives, not from fresh, raw produce. Partially-hydrogenated oils, white sugar, aspartame, MSG and artificial food colors almost certainly kill far more people than bacterial contaminations.
The American public is also dying from pharmaceuticals -- anywhere from 100,000 to 240,000 people a year are killed by FDA-approved drugs (http://www.naturalnews.com/001894.html), most of which have been approved under the guise of blatantly fraudulent science and drug company trickery. The FDA doesn't seem to mind. In fact, it has been a willful co-conspirator in the scientific fraud carried out by Big Pharma in the name of "medicine" (http://www.naturalnews.com/027851_h... [see also my posts from this past Sunday and Monday morning--JAH]).
To think that the FDA -- the very same agency responsible for the Big Pharma death machine -- is now going to "save us" by controlling food safety is highly irrational.
Lie #8 - The FDA just wants to make food "safer"
Actually, the FDA wants to make the food more DEAD. Both the FDA and the USDA are vocal opponents of live food. They think that the only safe food is sterilized food, which is why they've supported the fumigation, pasteurization and irradiation efforts that have been pushed over the last few years.
California almond growers, for example, must now either chemically fumigate or pasteurize their almonds before selling them (http://www.naturalnews.com/021776.html). This has destroyed the incomes of U.S. almond farmers and forced U.S. food companies to buy raw almonds from Spain and other countries.
Lie #9 - Food smuggling is a huge problem in America
One of the main sections of S.510 addresses "food smuggling." Yep -- people smuggling food across the country.
If you've never heard of this problem that's because it's not actually a problem.
Not yet, anyway.
But there's a reason why they put this into the bill: Because they're probably planning on criminalizing fresh produce and then arresting people for transporting broccoli with the "intent to distribute."
Yep, farmers bringing fresh produce to sell at the weekend farmer's market could soon be arrested and imprisoned as if they were drug smugglers. Hence the need for the "food smuggling" provisions of S.510.
Soon, we will all have to meet in secret locations just to trade carrots for cash.
Lie #10 - S.510 will make America's food supply the safest in the world
Actually, even with S.510 in place, America's food supply is among the most chemically contaminated in the world, second only to China. You can find mercury in the seafood, BPA in the canned soup, yeast extract (MSG) in the "natural" potato chips, and artificial petrochemical coloring agents in children's foods.
Eating the "Standard American Diet" is probably the single most harmful thing a person can do for their health. It's the fastest way to get cancer, diabetes and heart disease. Every nation in the world that begins to consume the American diet starts to show record rates of degenerative disease within one generation. This is the "safe food" that the U.S. Senate is now pushing on everyone.
Remember, with S.510, SAFE = DEAD. And the FDA says it wants to keep everybody safe.