Sowing the Seeds of Self-Destruction

The woes of our planet seem to be growing. As a species, we are simply not very good at living wisely. There are destructive forces in the world. Our daily newspapers report global pressures on the food supply, oil and energy. In such times, we tighten our belt . We spend less on food, drive the car less, watch our finances and think a little more about our future. We might become a little more frugal in our current priorities but we regard it as merely a blip in the economic cycle. The dinosaur of economic progress and increasing our standard of living must not slow down. I notice that the biotech companies are taking full advantage of public concerns about the rising costs of food. Market speculators are making a fortune on gambling that the cost of basic foods will go up. These self deluded gamblers on the food chain tell us to buy stocks and shares in the food market helps farmers worldwide to make more money. If the cost of food goes up, the farmers will get a bigger return, they claim. More and more of the world’s poor, including farmers in Africa and Asia, cannot afford to buy grain, vegetables and fruit to feed their families. We might cut back a little on what we spend but the poor live on next to nothing, or nothing.Nine major biotech companies have filed 532 patents on various genes so that farmers will have to depend on the companies to buy seeds. The big players in the food industry, such as Monsanto, want to sell patented time bound seeds to farmers at the beginning of every planting season. Every year they push harder and harder to get their way.

Major crops will be under threat if governments give into the pressure. Seeds for patented crops include rice, potatoes, soya, tea and oats. The companies are now trying to persuade governments and farmers they will be able to offer seeds to protect against climate change as well as stops insects and weeds from affecting crops. It is part of the massive hype. We have had a decade of GM crops with no real evidence of any increase in food production.

With the international food chain in some uncertainty, our local supermarkets have seized the opportunity and hiked up prices. They refuse to explain why the hike in prices is not being passed onto the food producers in the North, South, East or West.

The bio tech companies market their strategy to control the world’s food supply as a ‘green revolution to feed the world’s hungry.” The language of compassion is used to justify corporate ambitions.

There is not a scrap of evidence that corporate capitalism and scientific materialism can end global poverty. We can feed the world’s hungry but we can’t keep feeding the world’s greed. We have to sit down and explore sustainable resources for the welfare of our planet and its citizens.

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