Re: GM angst

From: Brian D Williams (
Date: Thu Jul 20 2000 - 08:12:07 MDT


>Damien, as a hard-core conservationist (note, not
>"environmentalist" -- a point of nomenclature I've written about
>here before), I'm in full agreement that rational and
>well-informed people should be concerned about the environmental
>effects of our technology and that we need social mechanisms for
>making producers internalize the cost of damage they do to the
>environment. The problem I see now is that the process has become
>politicized and "ideologized" to the point where the science is
>taking a back seat to rhetoric and "activism". We're really
>faced with a "meta" problem that underlies issues as diverse as
>"GM Foods", "hormonesque" chemicals released into the environment,
>electromagnetic field effects and human genetic engineering, to
>name just a few. How do we get institutions and interest groups
>to "calm down" and allow the science to be done in a fashion that
>will produce acceptable answers without prejudging the many
>techno-soccial questions we face?

The problem is that the science the GM industry is doing involves
me as the unwitting lab rat, a part I am loath to play.

They can start to promote the "calming down" bu halting their
opposition to labeling.

It's clear the industry is unwilling to face the facts.

Knowledgable consumers like myself distinguish between "good" GM
products and "bad" products. (using these terms as a statement of
personnal preference.)

I'll give a couple of examples.

I think micronutrient rice is probably a good idea.

I think RoundUp *.* is a bad idea, I want to know if a product
contains it because there is zero chance of me using any product
that contains it.

The historical evidence is seen daily in newspaper headlines, even
when companies know about bad things their products do, they either
ignore it, or hide it.


Extropy Institute,
Adler Planetarium
Life Extension Foundation,
National Rifle Association,, 1.800.672.3888
Mars Society,
Ameritech Data Center Chicago, IL, Local 134 I.B.E.W

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