Monsanto pays farmers to use troubled poison

Monsanto has announced it will pay farmers to use one of its troubled poisons. (And why not? It’s a tried and true method that has worked for drug sales, illegal and otherwise.  Give the customer a free sample to hook him, then start charging, raising the price with the demand you’ve created.)

Monsanto’s latest version of its dicamba poison has been the subject of several lawsuits from farmers and homeowners. Dicamba has been shown to blow into neighboring farms and fields, damaging or killing plants. Monsanto and some farmers have consequently been sued by farmers or homeowners whose plants or property has been damaged by dicamba.

Farmers tend to get upset when you threaten or kill their livelihood. One Arkansas farmer was murdered over a Monsanto dicamba feud.  Others have developed non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma from Monsanto Roundup exposure.

Monsanto’s answer to the dicamba drifting problem has been to make it cheaper for farmers to use its beleaguered poison. It is offering cash to farmers who will use it. The ploy is clearly part of Monsanto’s continuing strategy to own everything that grows. If Monsanto can make everyone use its poison products, there will be nothing left to grow except patented Monsanto-poisoned seeds sprayed with Monsanto poisons. If you don’t think full spectrum market domination is not the company’s goal, you don’t know Monsanto.

Monsanto Lesson for India
American farmers lured into using dicamba by the promise of being paid to use it may want to consider the lesson of Indian farmers lured into the promise of easier farming and bigger yields.

Monsanto Farmer Suicides
In third-world countries such as India, Monsanto lured thousands of farmers into using its Roundup and GMO seeds by initially making them cheaper to purchase and use.  Then it lowered the boom, jacking up prices to where farmers couldn’t turn a profit.  Monsanto’s engineered crops also spectacularly failed in India.  So miserable did so many of the farmers become in their awful farming arrangement with Monsanto that thousands of them committed suicide.  Death became preferable to doing business with the biotech bully from Missouri.

In America today, Reuters reports – without the India farmers’ perspective – that “Monsanto Co will give cash back to U.S. farmers who buy a weed killer that has been linked to widespread crop damage, offering an incentive to apply its product even as regulators in several U.S. states weigh restrictions on its use.”

Monsanto wants farmers to use XtendiMax with VaporGrip, a poison (herbicide) based on the chemical known as dicamba. Reuters reportrs that Monsanto could refund farmers over half the sticker price of the poison in 2018 if they spray it on Monsanto’s GMO soybeans altered to resist it.

Monsanto is using its “generous offer” in an attempt to override the fact that the U.S. faced an agricultural crisis in 2017 which was caused by new formulations of Monsantio’s dicamba-based poisons.  Both farmers and weed experts say dicamba spraying harmed crops because it evaporated and drifted onto neighboring plants, gardens, trees, and other green growing areas that were not genetically altered to withstand the poison.

Monsanto claims XtendiMax is safe when properly applied.  Monsanto is banking on dicamba and soybean seeds engineered to resist it, called Xtend, to dominate soybean production in the U.S.

Meanwhile, if Monsanto’s latest dicamba product doesn’t kill non GMO plants, BASF SE and DowDuPont also sell versions of dicamba-based herbicides that can.

Monsanto competes against other chemical farming monsters such as Bayer AG (which is now trying to buy Monsanto) to sell farmers genetically perverted soybean seeds and chemicals.  Bayer is selling its LibertyLink soybean brand, a main rival to Xtend, to BASF as part of a deal to acquire Monsanto for $63.5 billion.  (Yes, Virginia, there’s good money in poisoning the land and monopolizing the seed industry.)

States prohibit Monsanto Poison
North Dakota in December 2017 said that it planned to ban dicamba herbicides after June 30, 2018, and when temperatures top 85 degrees Fahrenheit. The state think those restrictions may prevent dicamba from drifting beyond where it is sprayed.

Missouri may finalize restrictions on XtendiMax soon, after banning sprayings of BASF’s dicamba herbicide, called Engenia, in ten counties after June 1, 2018, and statewide after July 15, 2018.

Arkansas wants to stop dicamba sprayings after April 15, 2018.

Minnesota is also considering dicamba restrictions.

The farming states are taking action after the U.S. EPA (normally a rubber stamp agency for Monsanto) mandated special training for dicamba users for 2018. They will require that farmers keep records proving they were complying with label instructions.  (As if farmers don’t already have enough to do.)

Monsanto pays farmers to use troubled poison

Will Monsanto be able to lure in more customers with cheaper poison?  The company sure thinks so. Reuters reports Monsanto predicts it will double Xtend soybean plantings to about 40 milion acres next year, despite the millions of dollars in crop damage dicamba unleashed in 2017.

Related

•  Dicamba Pesticide Lawsuit

•  Monsanto Lawsuit

•  Roundup Cancer Lawsuit

•  Monsanto pays farmers to use troubled poison

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Monsanto sues Arkansas for Dicamba Ban

Monsanto sued Arkansas agricultural officials in October 2017 for a proposed ban on dicamba, which has damaged millions of acres of crops.  Arkansas proposed a summer ban on Monsanto’s dicamba weed killer, which has been linked to widespread crop damage in the state as well as beyond its borders.

Arkansas faces a tough task in taking on the chemical giant from neighboring Missouri. Loaded with lawyers, Monsanto has used its legal army (which includes former Monsanto lawyer Clarence Thomas as well as employees of the EPA) to sue more than 100 American farmers, and it has never lost against them.  Though this case is admittedly somewhat different.

Related: Arkansas Farmer Murdered in Monsanto Poison Feud

The Monsanto lawsuit is attempting to block the Arkansas State Plant Board from prohibiting the use of Monsanto’s dicamba herbicides. Arkansas wants them banned during summer.  The poisons are meant to be sprayed on GMO soybeans and cotton.  Monsanto genetically modifies staple money plants like soy, cotton, and corn; so that they become resistant to Monsanto-patented poisons like Roundup and dicamba.  But dicamba has caused some serious problems for neighboring farmers and residents.

Farmers across America’s farm belt said in summer 2017 that dicamba drifted onto areas beyond where it was sprayed, damaging millions of acres of crops that were not genetically engineered to absorb and tolerate the herbicides.  Poison experts say dicamba is likely to vaporize in high temperatures in a process known as volatility.

Monsanto blames Farmers
Companies like Monsanto selling the herbicide/pesticide poisons have blamed the crop damage on farmers they say are misusing dicamba.  Farmers, in turn, have responded by saying the dicamba directions are nearly impossible to follow.  Farmers suffering possible damages from lawsuits against them for dicamba drift have also said Monsanto sold them the seeds meant to be sprayed with dicamba, but failed to sell them the latest formulation of dicamba.  In some cases, Monsanto sold them seeds before the dicamba formulation meant to go with them had not yet been approved by the U.S. EPA.

To prevent damage, the Arkansas plant board proposed at a September 2017 meeting to limit or stop dicamba spraying.  That put Arkansas one step away from banning dicamba sprayings after April 15, 2018.

Monsanto wants its own studies made evidence
Monsanto argued in its latest lawsuit that the Arkansas board did not review 14 studies on volatility Monsanto submitted at the meeting. Monsanto’s own studies virtually always exonerate Monsanto products, despite what independent studies find.  But Monsanto did not mention that fact in its lawsuit.  Most likely the Arkansas board was not interested in studies performed by a company with vested interests in the outcomes.  It was looking at what was happening on the ground, at millions of acres of crop damage seen firsthand and reported by experienced farmers.

Monsanto’s lawsuit said that the Arkansas board’s action hurt Monsanto and its dicamba herbicide brand through the loss of direct sales and indirect business through distribution and licensing agreements.  Scott Partridge, vice president of global strategy for Monsanto, claimed, “The plant board’s action disadvantages Arkansas farmers.”

Director of Arkansas’ plant board, Terry Walker, said in October that he had not seen Monsanto’s lawsuit, and he declined to comment.

Arkansas previously forbid farmers from using Monsanto’s dicamba herbicide, called XtendiMax with VaporGrip, in 2017.  Arkansas did allow sales of a version made by Monsanto’s rival BASF SE.

The U.S. EPA approved use of the herbicide poisons on crops that had emerged from the ground only through next year.  It could stop sprayings after 2018 if farmers suffer another year of damage.

Monsanto sues Arkansas for Dicamba Ban
The case is Monsanto Co v Arkansas State Plant Board et al, Circuit Court of Pulaski County, Arkansas, No. CV-17-5964.

Related

Arkansas Farmer Murdered in Monsanto Feud

•  Monsanto Lawsuit

•  Roundup Cancer Lawsuit

•  Monsanto’s Harvest of Fear

•  Monsanto sues Arkansas for Dicamba Ban

 

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Dicamba Pesticide Damages Crops

Monsanto is being sued by several farmers and homeowners who claim dicamba drifted onto their property and harmed their crops, trees, and gardens. Iowa State University has reported that more than 106 dicamba-related complaints from Iowa farmers or homeowners have been filed in 2016. That is a record number of reported pesticide problems.  In past years, university officials said they never received more than 200 complaints regarding all pesticides in the state.

Dicamba harms or kills green leafy plants that are not genetically modified to withstand it. Farmers who plant dicamba-resistant soy or corn spray dicamba to kill weeds.  But when that poison drifts onto neighboring properties, it kills or harms non GMO plants or even GMO plants which are not engineered to be dicamba resistant. (If you suspect at this point that the entire model of pesticide-based chemical farming may have a major problem growing – pun intended – you may be right. Runaway chemical farming methods are demonstrably killing land, animals, and people.)

Dicamba Controversy Grows (pun intended)
Monsanto’s rollout of its latest version of Dicamba is the largest in the company’s history, so the chemical giant from Missouri is fighting hard to defend its popular poison.  Meanwhile, more and more farmers are joining the fight to ban or limit its use. Nationally, according to a University of Missouri report, 2,242 farmers say dicamba has damaged an estimated 3.1 million acres.

Iowa agriculture leaders are investigating a record 258 crop damage reports from pesticides this year. About 100 complaints on 150,000 acres are tied to dicamba.

Monsanto and other chemical giants like DuPont and BASF have developed seeds that are genetically modified (GMOs). The GMO seeds can then be sprayed with a weed-killing pesticide (or herbicide) that takes out weeds but leaves the crop unharmed (though nutritionally compromised and full of GMO toxins).

Dicamba Drift
Dicamba critics say the new dicamba products don’t stay where they’re sprayed.  They move onto neighboring fields, where they can damage non-resistant crops, fruits, vegetables, trees, flowers.

Volatility vs. Applicator Error
Monsanto claims dicamba problems come mostly from farm application errors.

“We did 1,200-some odd tests in connection with registration of our product with EPA,” said Scott Partridge, Monsanto’s vice president of global strategy. “They confirmed to us what the label says — if it’s followed … there will be no off-target movement of dicamba by wind or volatization.”

This defense is similar to the one Monsanto is using in Roundup cancer lawsuits. Monsanto claims it tested Roundup hundreds or even thousands of times, while critics say those tests were all done with Monsanto money, or at the behest of Monsanto; so the results cannot be trusted.

More than a few university weed scientists disagree with Monsanto’s user error defense of dicamba.

“The big debate is whether or not [dicamba] is volatilizing,” or turning from liquid to vapor, enabling it to easily move, potentially over a few days, said Robert Hartzler, an Iowa State University weed scientist.  “New formulations were supposed to have taken care of the volatility problem,” he said, “but all the research suggests that they’ve reduced the volatility, but not to a level that’s safe” after plants have emerged from the ground.

Toxipedia.com lists volatility as a dicamba problem.  It also cautions that dicamba can be highly mobile in soil and can easily contaminate water.  One must take care not to harm desirable plants and be very cautious near water sources.  One wonders if this is being done at all.

The U.S. EPA (Monsanto’s regulatory friend) is speaking with academic researchers, state farm regulators, Monsanto and other pesticide makers to determine whether new restrictions should be placed on dicamba’s use.

An EPA official told the Des Moines Register, “The underlying causes of the various damage incidents are not yet clear, as ongoing investigations have yet to be concluded.”

Monsanto said that it is cooperating with the EPA’s review and expects a decision soon.

Monsanto Challenges Arkansas’s Dicamba Regulation
In October 2017, Monsanto challenged an Arkansas task force recommendation to ban the use of dicamba-related products after April 15 next year.  In July, Arkansas issued a four-month prohibition on dicamba use.  Arkansas farmers have logged 963 dicamba-related complaints in 2017.

Bob Hartzler, weed specialist, Iowa State University
Bob Hartzler said he and other weed scientists support EPA restrictions on dicamba product-use after plants have emerged from the ground, a time that can vary depending on the state.

“If it is volatilizing, it’s nearly impossible to use, in my opinion, post-emergence,” he said.

Monsanto Profits Threatened

Mr. Hartzler said Monsanto and BASF are fighting restrictions because they would “greatly reduce the value” of their chemical and seed systems, which required “a huge investment” to develop over several years.

“The seed is where they make the majority of their money,” Hartzler said. “So if the chemical is restricted and it no longer controls waterhemp or Palmer amaranth, farmers would not see the need to pay additional money” for that technology.

Glyphosate Overuse triggers Dicamba Overuse
The vicious pesticide cycle dicamba continues began with overuse of glyphosate.  Used in Roundup and other pesticides/herbicides, glyphosate has been overused so much that it has spawned superweeds which have evolved to withstand it.  Monsanto’s answer, chemical farming’s answer, has been to pour more of another toxic cocktail on the problem, this time dicamba.

Iowa and U.S. farmers want some answer to battle weeds that can no longer be killed with glyphosate.

The Des Moines Register reports that several Southern states are struggling with glyphosate-resistant Palmer amaranth, a rapidly growing, fast-adapting “super weed” that can quickly overrun cotton and soybean fields.

Palmer amaranth is creeping across Iowa, moving into about half of its counties. So far, the weed can be killed with glyphosate, but weed scientists say it’s only a matter of time until it adapts to the the widely used chemical.

The Iowa Department of Agriculture has asked farmers in the state to check fields this harvest for Palmer amaranth, which can grow more than seven feet tall.

And so it goes. Many farmers fearing Palmer amaranth will turn to dicamba, and continue the awful chemical cycle of poisoning themselves and the land to produce substandard food.  GMO food and GMO food-growing methods have been found to be not only bad for the environment, but they also produce less nutritious food than conventional or organic farming.

Related

•  Dicamba Pesticide Lawsuit

•  Monsanto Lawsuit

•  Arkansas Farmer Murdered in Monsanto Feud

•  States move to restrict Monsanto Herbicide Use

•  Glyphosate devastates Brain Development

•  Kill Weeds without Monsanto’s Roundup

•  Monsanto Campaign to retract Seralini Study Revealed

•  Dicamba Pesticide Damages Crops

 

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Arkansas Farmer Murdered in Monsanto Feud

An Arkansas farmer was murdered in a Monsanto related feud in October 2016.  Mike Wallace had objected to neighboring farmers illegally spraying Monsanto’s Dicamba, which drifted onto Mr. Wallace’s property.  The Dicamba began killing Mr. Wallace’s cotton and soy fields.  When Mr. Wallace objected, he was killed himself.  The murderer, who used a rifle, was seen arguing near a field with Mr. Wallace before he was shot.

Related: Dicamba Lawsuit

Monsanto’s Poison Products
Only one thing is certain:  Monsanto’s poison products were at the center of the conflict that led to Mr. Wallace’s murder.  He and most of his neighbors had used Monsanto’s Roundup themselves over many years.  Too many years.  So many years that pigweed evolved to resist the poison.  It had become nearly impossible to kill.  Pigweed is every farmer’s mortal enemy.  It can destroy entire fields.  Monsanto’s answer to the pigweed problem was to pour more poison on it.  (This is chemical farming 101; when one type of poison no longer works, use more of it, then use another.  It is a toxic, insane cycle that cannot, in the long run, benefit the land, animals, or the people who live off it.)  The other, bigger problem that never goes away with chemical farming is that Monsanto’s poison had caused the problem in the first place.  Mike Wallace’s neighbor had begun to use Dicamba to kill his own pigweed.  But Mr. Wallace’s crops had not been genetically engineered to withstand Dicamba; so it began to kill them.

Roundup Dependence Bites Farmers

Mr. Wallace’s “crop consultant,” Dave Pierce, told NPR in June 2017:  “Roundup made a lot of people good farmers.  It was a once-in-a-lifetime chemistry.  I mean, we depended on it for years and years.  And we depended on it too much.”

“Too much,” said Marianne McCune of NPR, “because after a decade or so, the pigweed did its own genetic morphing and became immune to Roundup.”

Then two years ago, the big chemical companies unveiled a new GMO seed to go with a new/old Monsanto poison called Dicamba.  But the new Dicamba spray concoction that Monsanto planned to sell with the seeds wasn’t approved.  Some farmers, meanwhile, had an old formulation of Dicamba, one especially prone to drift onto neighboring fields.

The murdered farmer’s cousin, Maleisa Finch, told NPR that farmers had always dealt with some drift, but had always just talked it out, and amicably paid one another for any damages.

But talking didn’t work for Dicamba, Ms. McCune reported, because it was illegal to spray the old Dicamba formulation during growing season.  Once farmers started planting Dicamba-tolerant seeds, they saw pigweed invading their fields, and started spraying Dicamba.

Question:  Why was Monsanto selling seed before the new Dicamba was approved?  Did the company think farmers would buy seed without using it?  Was Monsanto unaware that farmers had old Dicamba formulations and would use them?

Ms. McCune said, “When Mike saw the leaves on some of his cotton curling and puckering from Dicamba, he, like many farmers, filed a complaint with the Plant Board.  They’re like the pesticide police. And they tracked the cause of Mike’s damage to a neighboring farmer, Donald Masters.”

Ms. McCune spoke with Donald’s son Douglas about the Plant Board’s visit to the Masters’ farm in search of Dicamba.  Douglas said, “[E]verybody got in trouble.”  He laughed when she asked if he knew he wasn’t supposed to be spraying it.

Then Mr. Masters said, “It goes back to economics.”  He explained that, “Farmers take out huge loans every year to pay for seeds, pesticides and everything else. And with crop prices low, their profit margins are very thin.”  So when the pigweed started threatening his crops, he needed a “cheap and effective solution,” he said.  Dicamba was his only option left, he said.

Then she spoke with Donald Masters.  The patriarch of the Masters clan admitted to spraying Dicamba, even though he knew he wasn’t supposed to.

“Why’d I do it?” said Mr. Masters.  “Because I’ve got weeds you can’t kill otherwise.  But anyway, I paid the fine – and supposed to be done with, I hope.”

200,000 Acres of Crop Damage
The maximum fine then was just $1,000.  But a farmer could save tens of thousands of dollars by using the cheap Dicamba.  In 2016, farmers in the region saw damage on nearly 200,000 acres of crops – millions of dollars’ worth.  And Mike Wallace continued to speak out.

Mr. Wallace’s complaint to the Plant Board that summer led investigators to another neighboring farm. That farmer contested the accusation and refused to give over his pesticide records.  Tensions were still high after harvest, when farmers find out how much the damage is worth.  It was then that for reasons Mike’s family members say they don’t know, Mike got a phone number for an employee of that second farm.  The two men met to talk on a quiet county road, and Mike wound up dead.

Arkansas Farmer Murdered in Monsanto Feud

A man in Mississippi County was arrested for Mike’s murder.  Mike’s wife Karen said that more than a thousand people showed up for his funeral at their church.

Monsanto Lawsuit over Dicamba

Arkansas is now raising its fines for illegal spraying, and fighting to ban it altogether during certain growing periods.  Monsanto is, of course, fighting any ban.  Missouri’s biggest peach farmer is suing Monsanto for selling Dicamba-tolerant seeds without the new spray to go with it.  Monsanto claims the suit is baseless, that it’s not Monsanto’s fault if someone sprayed a chemical they weren’t supposed to.

Monsanto did warn people not to use the spray.  (But how else were they going to use the seeds they were sold?)  Meanwhile, a new, approved Dicamba has hit the market.  The new Dicamba is not supposed to “drift so much,” according to NPR, but how much is too much?  Crop damage is already being reported, whether from legal or illegal use of Dicamba.  Weed scientists’ concerns are that once everyone starts using Dicamba like they used Roundup, the pigweed will grow immune again.  Monsanto’s answer will again be to spray yet greater amounts of poison on the land and crops, into the air, onto the people.  Monsanto lawsuits have already been filed by the hundreds for people exposed to cancerous Roundup who were diagnosed with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.

Arkansas and other states are moving to ban Dicamba for certain growing periods.  Arkansas held a hearing this summer on the poison subject.  The most impassioned plea for banning Dicamba came from an Arkansas’ beekeeper, who said he has lost at least half his hives from Dicamba poisoning the land.  It’s now a well-known fact that pesticides are playing a major role in massive bee die offs.  Einstein said humanity wouldn’t last four years if our pollinator bees died off.  If true, we are now about halfway down the road to extinction.

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States move to restrict Monsanto Herbicide Use

Several states are moving to restrict the use of a Monsanto herbicide.  Monsanto’s poison Dicamba has drifted into neighboring farms, homes, and gardens, killing indiscriminately.

Writer Rhonda Johansson reported for Natural News on Oct. 29, 2017 that Tennessee just became the fourth state to restrict the use of Monsanto herbicide.

Dicamba drifts, kills Neighboring Lands

Tennessee farmers have stated that Monsanto’s poison Dicamba has drifted to neighboring farms. It has damaged neighboring crops and garden life not genetically-modified to withstand it.  Nor are bees, birds, and people genetically modified to withstand this poison.  Consequently, we now see massive pollinator bee and bird die-offs, along with Monsanto lawsuits being filed for hundreds of people with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.

Tennessee joins Arkansas, Missouri, and Kansas in holding Monsanto responsible for environmental damage. Dicamba is the main ingredient in herbicides produced by Monsanto, BASF, and DuPont for use on genetically modified soybeans and cotton. Part of that genetic perversion makes the seeds impervious to toxic assaults.  It also strips them of nutritional value and attacks otherwise healthy flora in the human gut. (This is also how glyphosate kills plants and bees and sickens people.) The U.S. EPA approved dicamba in 2016 to kill broadleaf weeds, using Monsanto’s own studies as “proof” of its safety. In much the same way, the Monsanto-captured agency approved Monsanto’s cancerous Roundup.

Related: One EPA Scientist calls out another for Monsanto Support

Monsant Poison kills Indiscriminately
Farmers in the southern United States say dicamba has cost their neighbors thousands of dollars in lost crops by drifting onto surrounding farms.  Several lawsuits have already been filed against dicamba producers.  A Wyatt, Missouri farmer, Hunter Rafferty, told Reuters, “We’ve had damage across just about every acre of soybeans we farm in southeast Missouri.  In our small town, the azaleas, the ornamentals, people have lost their vegetable gardens.  It’s a big problem.”

Mr. Rafferty says 3,000 to 4,000 acres of soybeans on his family farm have been compromised because of dicamba drifting onto his property.  He says plant leaves have constricted into cup-like shapes – a warning sign that the soybeans have been altered.

Monsanto has dismissed these claims (of course).  Monsanto insists these are only challenges faced by any and every “early-adoption strategy.”  Monsanto representatives liken this cross-contamination to similar problems Monsanto faced launching Roundup Ready glyphosate-resistant crops 20 years ago.  Monsanto claims that situation was “fixed.”  Other recent reports and hundreds of Roundup cancer lawsuits against the toxic giant suggest otherwise.  Monsanto has a long, sordid history of contaminations and cover-ups.

Monsanto blames Farmers
“In almost every technology in the first year there are kinks that you need to work out,” said Robb Fraley, Chief Technology Officer of Monsanto, in response to the dicamba lawsuits.

Fraley joins spokespeople from BASF and DuPont who blame improper application as the cause for the damaged crops. They flatly deny any inherent chemical issues.  Mr. Fraley claims farmers fail to follow application labels, use contaminated equipment, or buy older formulations which save on costs but are more prone to drift.  However, he did say Monsanto will look over additional safeguards for using Dicamba.

Monsanto likes to blame farmers.  It has sued more than 145 of them over the years, never losing in Monsanto-friendly courts.  Litigation-happy Monsanto is the first to claim “frivolous lawsuit” anytime the company is sued for its civil and criminal behavior.

Monsanto unleashed Dicamba to match its Monits Xtend line of soybeans and cottons which have been designed to withstand the poison. The line was meant to replace earlier products that contained only glyphosate.  In 1970, Monsanto introduced glyphosate-resistant crops to battle the rapid buildup of plant-destroying weeds.  Glyphosate’s performance has been less than stellar over the long run.  Early Roundup crop yields matched conventional yields, but heavier and heavier chemical applications of Roundup have spawned superweeds and superpests.  The monoculture farming methods Roundup engenders have stripped fields of needed nutrients, destroying thousands of acres of once-fertile farmland.  Monsanto’s chemical farming methods also require greater amounts of water than conventional or organic farming.  That’s anther problem for Monsanto, since water has become more valuable than oil.

What is Dicamba?

Monsanto introduced its new dicamba formulation late in 2016, marketing it as XtendMaxTM.  Dicamba was reported to have low-volatility, which Monsanto described as being less likely to drift while being more “flexible,” (not sure what that means).  Monsanto also claimed Dicamba is    better able to “maximize crop yield potential.” (Great buzz phrase, that.  Time will tell if it’s true.  It wasn’t true for Roundup in the long run.)  In its official press release, Monsanto projected over 15 million Roundup Ready 2 Xtend soybean acres, as well as three million Bollgard II XtendFlex cotton acres by the end of 2017.

These estimations might not apply, given the latest restrictions filed by Tennessee.  Part of these guidelines include allowing application only from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., and banning the use of older dicamba formulations.

Tennessee Agriculture Commissioner Jai Templeton has said, “I’m confident that we can address this issue as we have in other cases to ensure the safe and effective use of these tools.”

States move to restrict Monsanto Herbicide Use

“Safe and effective use of these tools”?  Since when is poison a tool?  Is Jai Templeton also another tool, like the EPA’s Jess Rowland, or the FDA’s Michael Taylor?  Keeping dicamba from contaminating neighboring corn or soy fields is like having a no-peeing section in a swimming pool.  Can fences be made impermeable to drifting winds?  Monsanto’s game is the same as it has always been.  It moves closer and closer to monopolizing seeds.  The company seeks to own every growing thing in the world.  Anyone who doesn’t understand that yet doesn’t know much about Monsanto.  Please study its rancid history, and its latest move to join war criminal Bayer in a nightmare merger of chemical giants.

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One EPA Scientist calls out another for Monsanto Support

The EPA, FDA and other government agencies are often maligned for showing fealty to corporate interests rather than U.S. citizens. The criticism is usually deserved.  Citizens pay those agencies’ salaries through their taxes. But among the runaway corporate wreckage aided by captured government agencies, some employees stand firm for citizen safety.  One such unsung hero is Marion Copley.  May she rest in peace, but may her work and her words of warning never rest.  Ms. Copley knew glyphosate is carcinogenic.  She tried to hold the EPA’s feet to the fire to announce that fact and protect citizens from it.

A recent Monsanto lawsuit has introduced the world to Marion Copley.  An EPA toxicologist, Ms. Copley was dying of breast cancer in March 2013 when she wrote a telling letter to Jess Rowland, deputy director of EPA’s pesticide division.  She tried to appeal to Mr. Rowland’s sense of civic duty.  As her letter made clear, she was well aware of his history of running interference for corporate interests.  What she didn’t know then, but what we all know now, is that Mr. Rowland had no sense of civic duty.

Editor’s Note:  It’s not all bad news.  The FDA’s David Graham is another unsung hero; he alerted Americans to the dangers of Vioxx.  Dr. William Marcus is another.  A Senior Science Advisor in EPA’s Office of Drinking Water, Dr. Marcus sued the agency and won, after it tried to destroy him for doing his job – alerting Americans to the dangers of fluoridation chemicals in their drinking water. Another is CDC scientist William Thompson.  (It’s heartening to know some exist!)

A Dying Declaration of Purpose
Since a cancer diagnosis is now well known to be most often a result of toxic environmental exposures, Ms. Copley’s breast cancer led her to redouble her longtime efforts to act in the interests of others facing toxic exposures.  She had been an EPA toxicologist for 30 years, researching the effects of chemicals on mice.  She knew something about toxicity, including the kind in office politics, as her letter to Mr. Rowland made clear, and as his subsequent actions made ever clearer.

Jess Rowland was deputy director of the EPA’s pesticide division in 2013.  He led the Cancer Assessment Review Committee, which was evaluating (or pretending to evaluate) Monsanto’s glyphosate.   Ms. Copley also served on that committee.  In her letter, she described how the property that makes glyphosate such a potent pesticide – its ability to target an enzyme that plants need to grow – also plays a role in the formation of tumors in humans.  She named 14 specific methods by which it could do the job.  (Fourteen!  Where are her study notes now?)  She wrote:

“Glyphosate Causes Cancer”
“Any one of these mechanisms alone…can cause tumors, but glyphosate causes all of them simultaneously,” Ms. Copley wrote. “It is essentially certain that glyphosate causes cancer.”

Then she got personal with Mr. Rowland, and in doing so revealed much more about him and the way the EPA too often works, or doesn’t:

“Jess: For once in your life, listen to me and don’t play your political conniving games with the science to favor the registrants.”  [Monsanto, in this case, of course.]  She closed her letter: “I have cancer and I don’t want these serious issues to go unaddressed before I go to my grave.  I have done my duty.”  Ms. Copley died the next year, in 2014.

Would that Mr. Rowland also have done his duty.  He was, instead, busily acting in a manner which Ms. Copley’s letter telegraphed for future investigations into EPA collusion with Monsanto. Mr. Rowland acted exactly as he had in the past, according to Ms. Copley’s estimation of his past work for EPA.  He played his “political conniving games.”

Mr. Rowland’s job required him to work closely with registrants like Monsanto. The documents, however, demonstrate a strikingly cozy relationship with Monsanto employees.  One April 2015 e-mail reveals that Mr. Rowland told Monsanto he would try to kill a planned review of glyphosate by the Department of Health and Human Services’ Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR).  That agency, along with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), is charged with evaluating potential adverse health effects from exposure to man made chemicals.

“If I can kill this I should get a medal,” Mr. Rowland said of the review, according to an e-mail written by Dan Jenkins, Monsanto’s lead liaison to government agencies. “I doubt EPA and Jess can kill this; but it’s good to know they are actually going to make the effort,” Mr. Jenkins wrote to his colleagues in the same e-mail.  (Note Monsanto’s cozy first-name basis with its own regulator.)

Some other EPA officials claimed the ATSDR’s proposed review was unnecessary since the EPA was conducting its own evaluation.  Regardless, Monsanto got what it wanted.  By October 2015, the ATSDR review was  put on hold, and Monsanto was anticipating good news from the EPA.  Mr. Jenkins gushed to his colleagues: “Spoke to EPA: is going to conclude that IARC is wrong.”  Six months later, on a Friday in April 2016, the EPA’s long-anticipated report on glyphosate, signed by Rowland and stamped “final,” was released on the Internet.  It lasted only the weekend.  EPA retracted the report first thing Monday morning, calling its release “premature.”  Monsanto nevertheless dispatched a press release with the phony headline:  “Once Again, EPA Concludes That Glyphosate Does Not Cause Cancer.”

Jess Rowland retired within weeks of the release, which came as no surprise to Monsanto.  The previous September, Mr. Jenkins had told his co-workers, “Jess will be retiring from EPA in 5–6 months and could be useful as we move forward with ongoing glyphosate defense.”  (Attaboy, Jess!)

EPA Bows to Monsanto’s Own Studies
The EPA has often been criticized for its chemical-screening processes. It relies primarily on research funded or conducted by the chemical companies themselves.  In 2015, EPA determined there was “no convincing evidence” glyphosate disrupts the human endocrine system.  But that determination was based almost solely on studies funded by Monsanto, other chemical companies, industry groups.  None of the industry-sponsored studies, which were obtained by The Intercept’s Sharon Lerner, concluded that there were any health risks, despite the fact that some of their data suggested otherwise.  By contrast, a few of the small number of independent studies considered by the EPA did find evidence that glyphosate harms the endocrine system.  Unlike the EPA, the IARC considers only published, peer-reviewed science.  It does not consider a corporation’s own sponsored studies. Virtually all of Monsanto’s arguments that glyphosate is safe come from the company trumpeting its own industry-sponsored studies.

One EPA Scientist calls out another for Monsanto Support

Time will tell if the IARC can cleave to its designation of glyphosate as a probable carcinogen.  Meanwhile, how many other EPA employees are working behind the scenes to help Monsanto, while the company continues to spend millions of dollars, just as cigarette companies did, to confuse the issue with yet more industry-sponsored studies.  Many or most of these studies are disguised as independent, while a little digging shows that they are industry sponsored, like the ones Monsanto used to hoodwink the EPA and FDA into letting them unleash their glyphosate poison on the world.

More on that later.  Stay tuned. . .

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Roundup damages Cells, DNA

Research in Austria found that Roundup (glyphosate) causes cell and DNA damage to epithelial cells derived from the inside of the mouth and throat. The research raises concerns about the safety of inhaling glyphosate, a common way in which people are assailed by Roundup and other Monsanto poisons.

Siegfried Knasmueller and his colleagues at the Medical University of Vienna, Austria, found back in 2012 that Monsanto’s formulated version of glyphosate – Roundup Ultra Max – caused cellular and DNA damage.  That damage included chromosomal abnormalities. Roundup ultimately killed the cells at higher concentrations.  Most alarmingly, DNA damage occurred at concentrations below those required to induce cell damage. That suggests the damage was caused directly by glyphosate, not as an indirect result of cell toxicity.

This was not the first time glyphosate-based poison concoctions were shown to cause cytotoxic and genotoxic effects.  Several independent research teams have been documenting glyphosate hazards over the last several years, using in vivo, in vitro, and clinical studies.

Human Guinea Pigs in Argentina, Ecuador

DNA damage was seen in blood samples from exposed people in Argentina and Ecuador.  Lab mice showed chromosomal and DNA damage in bone marrow, liver, kidney cells, lymphoid cells. Similar effects were seen in non-mammals, including sea urchins, goldfish, eels, tilapia fish, fruit flies.

These experiments show glyphosate in weed killers is dangerous for humans and many other animals.  Glyphosate is highly soluble in water, so its assault on aquatic life may be of particular concern.  Other recent studies have found glyphosate in most samples of rain water, groundwater, rivers, air.  Glyphosate is now everywhere. Scientists have already shown its extreme toxic effects on amphibians such as frogs.  (See: Roundup Kills Frogs.)  Scientists have seen cell damage in many cell types, including those derived from rat testis, human placenta, umbilical cord, embryo, rat and carp neurones, liver.

Multiple tests have all shown cell damage from Roundup
To reflect occupational exposure, human buccal epithelial cells were exposed to glyphosate and Roundup for 20 minutes only at concentrations from 10 mg/L to 200 mg/L.  Roundup formulation used for the experiments contains 450 g/L of glyphosate and should be diluted according to Monsanto’s instructions to 1–3 % before use (final concentration 4 500–13 500 mg/l).  Researchers found significant effects with 10-20 mg/l, equivalent to a 225–1 350-fold dilution of the spraying solution.

Roundup more toxic than Glyphosate
Test results showed cells much more sensitive to Roundup (with glyphosate) than glyphosate alone. Roundup showed a significant effect at a dose level of 40 mg/L with the XXT assay.  A clear increase of the lactose dehydrogenase levels was already seen with 10 mg/L.  The cell proliferation and the neutral red assays were less responsive, with significant effects detected at 80 and 100 mg/L, respectively – still well below agricultural use levels.  All effects were dose-dependent.

Multiple tests show Roundup causes DNA damage
Significant effects on DNA integrity as assessed by the SCGE assay were seen at 20 mg/l of both Roundup and glyphosate, increasing in a dose-dependent manner.

Roundup damages Cells, DNA

Roundup was cytotoxic at concentrations as low as 20 mg/L, while its active ingredient was not generally cytotoxic to buccal epithelial cells. Both glyphosate and Roundup elicited genotoxic effects at concentrations below the level required to induce cell damage. The different effects between the active ingredient and its commercial formulation is consistent with previous work, including experiments done on testicular, placental, embryonic and umbilical cord cells. These results may explain some of the ailments observed in people who work with Roundup. They add yet more weight to the argument that Roundup should be completely banned for any use.  One shouldn’t need to be diagnosed with non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma and file a Roundup Lymphoma Lawsuit to get Roundup taken off the market.

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Monsanto tries to Dismiss Roundup Lawsuits

Monsanto is trying to dismiss more than 250 Roundup lawsuits in U.S. District Court in San Francisco. The suits were filed by people who allege exposure to Roundup herbicide caused them or their loved ones to develop non-Hodgkin lymphoma. The suits all charge that Monsanto covered up Roundup risks. The cases have been combined in a multi-district litigation action under Judge Vince Chhabria.  The lead case is 3:16-md-02741-VC.

In addition, at least 1,100 plaintiffs have made similar claims against Monsanto in state courts across the country. The first trial in the Roundup litigation is scheduled for June 18, 2018 in the Superior Court for the County of San Francisco.

On March 13, 2017, U.S. District Judge Vince Chhabria ruled that certain documents obtained by plaintiffs through discovery could be unsealed, over Monsanto’s attorneys’ objections.

U.S. Right to Know has reported the documents listed below will include discovery materials, transcripts of court proceedings, depositions and other case-related items.

The schedule for adjudication of the MDL litigation as of July 2017:
•  Close of Expert Discovery due by 9/22/2017.
•  Defendant’s Summary Judgment and Daubert Motions due by 10/6/2017.
•  Plaintiffs’ Cross Motions and opposition due by 10/27/2017.
•  Live testimony from witnesses set for 12/11/2017 through 12/14/2017 09:00 AM.
•  Summary Judgment and Daubert Hearing set for 12/15/2017 09:00 AM.

Meanwhile, a joint committee of the European Parliament is holding a hearing into the revelations contained in the discovery documents obtained through the MDL litigation on Oct. 11, 2017.

Discovery Documents show Monsanto EPA Collusion
Discovery documents in the litigation have revealed Monsanto colluding with EPA officials to sidestep regulatory agency reviews of Roundup. They show EPA officials working secretly with Monsanto to help the company portray Roundup as safe. They also reveal Monsanto executives discussing the ghostwriting of research literature in the name of academics like Stanford’s Henry Miller.

Monsanto manufactured Outrage at IARC
When the International Agency on Cancer Research declared in 2015 that glyphosate – in Roundup and other Monsanto pesticides – is a probable carcinogen, Monsanto went to work behind the scenes to manufacture outrage with astroturf organizations that it controlled. Documents released in the litigation show just how Monsanto called in scientists to protect its flagship product after it had been shown in dozens of studies to be a probable carcinogen. The scientists presented themselves as “independent,” while paper and email trails now show that nothing could be further from the truth. Most were former Monsanto employees or else had other financial ties or mutual interests with Monsanto.

Monsanto was terrified at the IARC’s review of glypohosate.  Internal Monsanto emails included: “It is possible that IARC’s decision will impact future regulatory decision making.”

Monsanto knew the timing was vital. In 2015, both the U.S. EPA and the European Commission were evaluating re-authorizations of Monsanto’s Roundup. Following the IARC’s classification, both the EU and the EPA delayed final decisions on glyphosate.

Whitewash
Carey Gillam just-released an eye-opening book called Whitewash (2017), which details Monsanto’s corruption of, and collusion with, government regulators.  Ms.Gillam notes just how important Monsanto knew it was to discredit the IARC.  She quotes Peter Infante, an epidemiologist who worked for more than 24 years for the U.S. government studying cancer risks from toxic exposures.

Mr. Infante spoke of Monsanto’s falsely manufacturing outrage at the IARC: “What this indicates to me is that it was obvious to Monsanto that there was evidence of carcinogenicity.  It would seem to me that Monsanto does not like the public to be informed of the cancer hazard.”

After the IARC ruled glyphosate a probable carcinogen, some Monsanto-connected scientists questioned the wisdom of U.S. funding for IARC.   Monsanto has since perpetuated a false story that the chairman of the IARC working group withheld critical information from the team.

Monsanto’s Manufactured Dissent
Monsanto’s telling document trail includes internal emails, memos and other communications obtained by plaintiffs’ attorneys suing Monsanto in the U.S.. That trail makes clear that the challenge to IARC’s classification did not come organically from a variety of voices.  The “outrage” was manufactured by Monsanto prior to IARC’s decision, and it continued afterward. The goal was, and is, to bully regulators into discounting the findings of the team of independent scientific experts who made up the IARC team that reviewed glyphosate.

Monsanto’s Decades-Long Subterfuge
The internal records obtained through Roundup cancer lawsuits, combined with documents obtained through Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) and state records requests, also show that the actions employed to discredit IARC were part of a decades-long pattern of deceptive tactics by Monsanto.  The company has spent millions in working behind the scenes to manipulate regulators, lawmakers and members of the press and public into believing glyphosate and Roundup are safe.  Monsanto has used these tactics over the years to attack and discredit several scientists whose research has found glyphosate and Roundup harmful.

Monsanto:  “Orchestrate Outcry”
Monsanto’s IARC attack plan was laid out in an internal February 2015 memo.  It involved not only Monsanto’s internal PR people, scientists and marketing experts, but many outside industry players. Various individuals were assigned tasks.  The “strategies and tactics” evidenced from Monsanto’s own files included:

“Orchestrate Outcry” with IARC Decision – Industry conducts robust media/social media outreach on process and outcome.

“Identify/request third-party experts to blog, op/ed, tweet and/or link, repost, retweet, etc.”  The documents reveal one such paid shill, so-called “expert,” academic Henry Miller.  He was provided a draft article to submit to Forbes for publication under his name, sans any mention of Monsanto’s heavy hand.  Forbes learned of the deceit in October 2017, and said it severed ties with Mr. Miller.

“Inform/Inoculate/Engage Industry Partners” – Notably the industry partners listed included three organizations that purport to be independent of Monsanto but have long been seen by critics as front groups for the company – Monsanto named ‘Academics Review’ and the ‘Genetic Literacy Project.’ Both are Monsanto PR companies based in the U.S.. Monsanto also named ‘Sense About Science,’ which has run operations for Monsanto in the United Kingdom and the U.S.  ‘Sense About Science’ was the astroturf group named by Monsanto to lead the industry response and “provide a platform for IARC observers.”  The groups did as Monsanto planned, posting scathing attacks on IARC on their websites.

Engagement with Regulatory Agencies – Monsanto planned for grower associations / growers to “write regulators with an appeal that they remain focused on the science, not the politically charged decision by IARC.”

“Push opinion leader letter to key daily newspaper on day of IARC ruling” with assistance of the Potomac Group marketing firm.

Monsanto’s “preparedness plan” against the IARC also called for supporting “the development of three new papers on glyphosate focused on epidemiology and toxicology.” As planned, shortly after the IARC decision hit the news, Monsanto arranged for several scientists – many of them former employees or paid consultants – to author and publish research papers supporting glyphosate safety.

Monsanto tries to Dismiss Roundup Lawsuits

There is little Monsanto won’t do to protect its flagship chemical, glyphosate, which stands as the cornerstone of its poison products’ business model.  Meanwhile the much greater danger is Roundup, of which glyphosate is only the main active ingredient. Roundup is many times more dangerous than glyphosate.  In keeping the argument narrowed to glyphosate, Monsanto is keeping regulators farther away from the much larger problem of Roundup. We will hope and pray that Judge Vince Chhabria sees through the subterfuge and allows Monsanto to stand trial.

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The Truth About Monsanto

Glyphosate Hazardous to Crops, Soils, Animals, People

The truth about Monsanto is almost completely censored by the mainstream media.  In Washington, a majority of both parties backed the heinous Monsanto Protection Act.  The DARK Act signed by President Obama made things even worse.  And when small farmers and other U.S. citizens manage to work around Monsanto’s own Congress –  Sen. Roy Blount (R-MO) and others – and air their grievances before the nation’s Supreme Court, a former Monsanto lawyer – Judge Clarence Thomas – is there to slam the courthouse door on them.  (Thomas has done so more than once.)  In Europe, however, Monsanto has had a tougher time forcing its poison practices on people.  Junk science and disinformation from Monsanto don’t sell  as well in Europe and elsewhere as they do in America.

Monsanto’s cancerous bovine growth hormone (rBGH), for one example, is banned in Europe, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, and Japan.  Most of those countries have also fought hard to keep Monsanto’s Roundup out of their food.

Related:  Monsanto Lawsuit | Lawyer

In Europe, politicians will even listen to an American scientist who can’t get heard in his own country.  Don Huber, a USDA senior scientist and professor emeritus at Purdue University, delivered to the UK Houses of Parliament the truth about Monsanto, Roundup, and glyphosate. Back in 2012, Huber gave UK’s Parliament a damning indictment of Monsanto products and methods.  He explained just why Monsanto is such a serious threat to crops, soils, animals, and people.

Crop Disease Sparks Scientist’s Interest
Mr. Huber has been a plant physiologist and pathologist for more than 40 years.  His academic career began with eight years as a cereal pathologist at the University of Idaho.  He spent 35 years at Purdue University, specializing in soil-borne disease control, physiology of disease, and microbial ecology. For the last 20 years, he has conducted extensive research into the effects of glyphosate on crops. His interest followed the huge increase in crop diseases on fields sprayed with glyphosate.

Letter to US Secretary of State Ignored
Mr. Huber wrote a letter to the US Secretary of State Tom Vilsak in February 2011. It was ignored by mainstream media and the American government. In the letter, Mr. Huber described a pathogen “new to science” that is everywhere in glyphosate-tolerant GM crops. He concluded in his letter: “We are now seeing an unprecedented trend of increasing plant and animal diseases and disorders. This pathogen may be instrumental to understanding and solving this problem”.

Glyphosate Reduces Nutrient Availability
Mr. Huber’s Parliament talk also linked glyphosate to reduced nutrient availability in plants, and to increasing plant diseases. He also referenced the emergence of a new pathogen causing animal illness that can possibly affect human health, since humans eat animals.

Pathogen New to Science
The conversion of U.S. agriculture to monochemical herbicide practice has resulted in the heavy use of glyphosate herbicides, Mr. Huber explained.  Farmers have coincidentally seen deterioration in the health of corn, soybean, wheat and other crops.  They’ve also seen epidemics of diseases in small grain crops. All this deterioration and disease are linked with the heavy use of glyphosate, which has increased further since the introduction of glyphosate-tolerant, Roundup Ready (RR) crops.

The Truth About Monsanto

Glyphosate kills by immobilizing nutrients that plants need for health and disease resistance.  (It also immobilizes human gut flora; so it is likely the cause, or a leading cause, of the huge increase in Irritable Bowel Syndrome.)  This weakening of plants’ defenses could explain the infestation of GM crops with the new pathogen.  It has now been found in horse, sheep, pigs, cows, chicken, multiple animal tissues including reproductive parts (semen, amniotic fluid), manure, soil, eggs, milk, as well as the common fungal pathogen now infesting RR crops, Fusarium solani fsp glycines mycelium.  All come in contact with glyphosate through direct exposure or animal feed consumption.  The pathogen is also highly abundant in crops suffering from plant Goss’ wilt and sudden death syndrome.

The pathogen can be cultured in the lab, Mr. Huber explained to Parliament.  It has been isolated from livestock foetal tissue, replicated in the lab and re-introduced back into the animals.  It appears to be very common and may well be interacting with the effects of glyphosate on both plants and animals. The result is that it exacerbates disease and causes reproductive failure in livestock.

Money Matters Limit Good Science
People who care about clean food and a cancer-free life want Mr. Huber to publish his findings. The problem is that he insists that before he can publish, he needs more resources (ie. money) to be able to characterize the ‘entity’ and identify what type of species it is, including sequencing of its genome. Such research is very expensive. The problem is who would pay for such research? This is largely how we got into the mess with Monsanto in the first place. Monsanto’s own studies (and political connections) were used to push Roundup past the US FDA and EPA. Those agencies simply took Monsanto’s word that Roundup was safe. They never required the necessary safety testing. Mr. Huber wants eventually to publish his work in a peer-reviewed journal, which is the only way such work could get into evidence to help stop Monsanto from continuing to devastate the world with its poison practices.

Government Must Sponsor Sound Research
It’s well past time that the National Institutes of Health, paid for by our tax dollars, performs long-term testing on Roundup as well as Monsanto’s monochemical practices.  Besides the fact that evidence shows Roundup to be linked with non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma, Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia, Hairy Cell Leukemia and other cancers, Roundup is killing pollinator bees, depleting soils, and devastating biodiversity.  It’s time for adults to take charge in Washington and do the work that only government can afford to do.  Our tax dollars should be spent in protecting us from criminal organizations like Monsanto, not being used against us to rubber stamp all of Monsanto’s poison practices.

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Glyphosate Red Herring for Real Dangers of Roundup

Glyphosate shocked the news world in 2015 when the World Health Organization declared it a probable carcinogen. The larger, nearly unmentioned problem, is that focusing on glyphosate alone obscures the real issue: the toxicity of Roundup.  Glyphosate is merely a red herring that hides the real dangers of Roundup.  Farmers and homeowners don’t poison weeds and driveways (and themselves) with glyphosate alone. They use Roundup, which is an entirely different animal.

Monsanto narrows Glyphosate / Roundup Argument

Monsanto is pleased to keep the discussion narrowed to glyphosate alone.  And most of the world’s industry-captured regulatory agencies have been pleased to oblige the chemical giant.  Glyphosate alone can be shown – in some studies, at least – to have a much nicer safety profile than Roundup. Consequently, any arguments about glyphosate have been cleverly controlled by Monsanto from the beginning.  The company has been assisted in this shell game by many of the world’s alphabet agencies – like the Monsanto-friendly EPA – in charge of protecting public health and the commons.

The EPA, incredibly (some would say, criminally), reviews only those studies which have examined glyphosate alone. The agency does not research, in any meaningful way, the entire toxic cocktail that is Roundup.  This glaring glitch results from an absurd loophole in the way chemicals in the U.S. are unleashed on the public, with the help of pliant agencies like the EPA, FDA, and others.  It’s the same story for generic drugs, which are not equivalent, no matter how they are marketed.  A generic drug is deemed to be “equivalent” if its “active ingredient” can be shown to be triggered in dubious lab tests.

Nothing in Our Universe exists in a Vacuum
For reasons beyond the pale of sensibility, EPA looks only at what Monsanto alleges is Roundup’s only active ingredient, glyphosate.  This is a ludicrous position, because the numerous adjuvants in Roundup change the entire game.  Nevertheless, as incredible as it seems, chemical companies like Monsanto are allowed to claim that all the adjuvants in Roundup (or other pesticides) are not active (in other words, irrelevant), without being made to prove that claim.

Far from being the be-all the and the end-all in the active chemical cocktail that is Roundup, glyphosate is only one of many ingredients present and active in the world’s most popular week killer.

Roundup lawsuits being filed against Monsanto are calling the company out for this incredible oversight.  The suits argue that the mixture of glyphosate with many other ingredients that comprise Roundup is what makes Roundup’s carcinogenic to people. Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma (NHL), Chronic Lymphocytic Lekemia (CLL), Multiple Myeloma, Hairy Cell Leukemia (HCL) have all been linked to Roundup exposure.

Roundup Warning: Adjuvants increase the toxicity of active ingredients
The FDA has  categorically failed to demand long-term tests of Roundup, the most popular of many Monsanto pesticides that list glyphosate as their only “active” ingredient.   Meanwhile, all glyphosate weed killers contain many other chemicals and ingredients called adjuvants.  Many of these adjuvants are toxic by themselves, yet their own toxicity can increase exponentially when mixed with glyphosate.

The adjuvants increase glyophosate toxicity by allowing it to penetrate animal, plant and human cells more easily.  The half-life of many Roundup adjuvants also outlast glyphosate alone.

The testing of a so-called active ingredient like glyphosate is essentially pointless.  Nobody is exposed to glyphosate alone.  It is always within a product that contains many other chemicals and components.  These ingredients can affect one another in profound ways.

1,000 times more toxic
An in vitro study looked at eight major pesticides – including Roundup – in terms of their complete formulations. The products were all shockingly many times more toxic to human cells when tested against their isolated adjuvants or so-called active ingredients.  Some were as much as 1,000 times more toxic.

Another in vivo study of pigs showed glyphosate and the adjuvant POEA combined in herbicide formulations were toxic to the pigs and lethal in high doses. Glyphosate alone, however, was not. A similar study using rats showed Roundup formulations were far more toxic than glyphosate alone.

Glyphosate Red Herring for Real Dangers of Roundup

Herbicides and pesticides are not accurately tested for safety and regulated by the agencies in charge of protecting human health and our environment.  The additives in Roundup and other weed killers and pesticides can comprise as much as 95 percent of the finished product. The EPA, FDA and other alphabet agencies have failed to protect us from Roundup and other pesticides and chemicals.  Our last best hope is that Roundup Lawsuits filed against Monsanto will stop the systemic poisoning of our food, soil, water, and our own bodies and minds.

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