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Gucciardi reports: "The biotech giant is now virtually guaranteed the ability to recklessly plant experimental GM crops without having to worry about the United States government and its subsequent courts."

The U.S. Senate passed the Monsanto Protection Act. (photo: M. Scott Mahaskey/Politico)
The U.S. Senate passed the Monsanto Protection Act. (photo: M. Scott Mahaskey/Politico)

Senate Passes Monsanto Protection Act

By Anthony Gucciardi, NaturalSociety

24 March 13


n the typical slippery nature of Monsanto's legislation-based actions, the biotech giant is now virtually guaranteed the ability to recklessly plant experimental GM crops without having to worry about the United States government and its subsequent courts. The Monsanto Protection Act buried deep within the budget resolution has passed the Senate, and now nothing short of a presidential veto will put an end to the ruling.

In case you're not familiar, the Monsanto Protection Act is the name given to what's known as a legislative rider that was inserted into the Senate Continuing Resolution spending bill. Using the deceptive title of Farmer Assurance Provision, Sec. 735 of this bill actually grants Monsanto the immunity from federal courts pending the review of any GM crop that is thought to be dangerous. Under the section, courts would be helpless to stop Monsanto from continuing to plant GM crops that are thought even by the US government to be a danger to health or the environment.

Senate Passes Monsanto Protection Act Despite Outcry

It is a lobbyist-created recurring nuisance that has been squashed in previous legislation thanks to outcry from not only grassroots but major organizations. Last time we saw The Center for Food Safety, the National Family Farm Coalition, the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), the Sierra Club, and the Union of Concerned Scientists all come out against the Monsanto Protection Act from the 2012 Farm Bill.

This time, there was a swift resistance I thought might be enough, however sadly the Senate acted so quickly on this and almost entirely ignored the issue that it has now passed despite thousands of fans signing the old petition I linked to in my previous articles on the subject. The old petition by Food Democracy Now detailed the effects of the bill:

If approved, the Monsanto Protection Act would force the USDA to allow continued planting of any GMO crop under court review, essentially giving backdoor approval for any new genetically engineered crops that could be potentially harmful to human health or the environment.

That said, now a new petition exists telling Obama to veto the bill. The reality is that the bill is actually seen as a positive one by most politicians, which is where Monsanto lobbyists were so deceptive and slippery as to throw in their rider (the actual Monsanto Protection Act into the bill). This makes it very unappealing to veto the bill, but also we must remember that Obama actually promised to immediately label GMOs back in 2007 when running for President.

In case you don't believe me, here's the video:



Ushering In a New Era of Activism

The simple fact is that this bill will likely not be vetoed by Obama, and instead Monsanto will get what they wanted. That said, this ushers in an entirely new era of activism. Monsanto has decided to push the envelope in a way that is unprecedented, fighting the US federal courts. I expected to see almost immediate legal action taken that will certainly hit the headlines, leading to even more people to become aware of what's really going on with this company and therefore their dinner.

Sometimes in order to truly have an intellectual revolution on a subject, the people need to see exactly what they are facing. With the truly blatant and downright arrogant Monsanto Protection Act, it's now clearer than ever. your social media marketing partner


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+52 # Walter J Smith 2013-03-24 16:52
Obama's false promises aside, the Senate Democrats should have long ago persuaded the Democratic Party's rank and file that their party's leaders consistently put corporate profits first, and everything else behind that unquestionable religious devotion.

Seems the GOP isn't the only party stuffed full of lots of inattentive voters.
+38 # Walter J Smith 2013-03-24 17:10
That vote really was a no brainer. Just look at how many Senators from both parties Monsanto owns:

Last night 73 of them voted for the Monsanto outrage!
+32 # RnR 2013-03-24 20:05
And when the Democratic fund raising organizations call, and I tell them to kma I'll donate when the Democrats get off their corporation-fun ded asses, they act surprised. I bet the message is never passed on.

Hopefully this will be.
+16 # wantrealdemocracy 2013-03-25 09:31
Not giving the bastards your hard earned cash is not enough. You, and he rest of us, must stop voting for either a D or an R.
+18 # RnR 2013-03-24 20:06
And I'll say it again - Monsanto is alphabet agency black ops.
+19 # RnR 2013-03-24 20:27
Jeremy Scahill and Matt Taibi - can the 2 of you step up to the plate? If not, everything else is going to be irrelevant shortly.
+52 # RnR 2013-03-24 20:46
I want to know why, in face of this, we are forced to remain civil?

Why can we not majorly unload on the senate and tell them exactly what we think? They just told us what they think of us. Why do we not have the same right?
+24 # brux 2013-03-24 22:59
It will come to that, no amount of voting or talking is going to pry these assholes away from their system of profits based on abuse and death!
+10 # Walter J Smith 2013-03-25 08:34
"I want to know why, in face of this, we are forced to remain civil?" Excellent question, and this question has been rumbling along for many years.

The Democrats have enough oily Senators to force eternal multi-faceted subsidies to big oil. The Democrats have enough sleazy Wall Streeters to force eternal multi-faceted subsidies to the grotesquely mismanaged banking & finance industry. Ditto with every civility-hating /destroying/und ermining/poison ing/intoxicatin g/corporation on the planet. Ditto with the extensions of the most licentious war-mongering in history with the ever-morphing and never accounted-for Drone-killing industry. Meanwhile, the Democrats have enough Tea Party anti-government , anti-politics, anti-taxers to prevent taxing these very same politically & contageously cancerous "citizens" so the rest of us wind up paying for these Democratic Senators to destroy us. And we must sit idly by and sing "why can't we all just get along?" and otherwise treat them as if they belong in civilization?

We must remain civil because our essence calls for civility in every moment possible. However, your question urgently calls out to us to decide where we can afford to let the Democrats push that line. Because push it they are. They act as if the self-destroying anti-civilizati on, anti-evolution, anti-breating clean air GOPers are the perfect cover for their incessant crimes.

So, where do WE draw the line, folks? "Our government is obviously not ours.
+7 # Syacht 2013-03-25 10:45
You are right on with your question "why are we FORCED to remain civil?" The answer is that we have become some kind of neo-fascist corporate run government. Our police forces that used to be the 'keepers of the peace' have been militarized, ie trained to fight 'the enemy' which is anyone who does not remain civil. And it all happened so fast!!!
+5 # Eliza D 2013-03-25 15:09
We aren't forced to remain civil, RnR, but we should and here's why. After we vent our spleen we feel self-righteous and imagine that we've accomplished something, when in fact, our oppressors are laughing at our impotent anger. We need to take that anger and direct it into action-Mr. McKibben's suggestions are excellent and have yielded more fruit than most of the empty ranting that I see far too many people doing. Write letters, protest, demand answers from your representatives . Most importantly, vote all the rethugs and dems out in 2014, excepting Sanders and Warren.
0 # teineitalia 2013-03-26 02:20
Eliza D.... do not discount Alan Grayson. He is a LION for progressive values.
+16 # Vardoz 2013-03-24 23:20
This is what we have representing us- sold out, corrupt people who are willing to tade bribes for lives. Everyone should find out who voted for this and call those reps and tell them they will not get your vote.

Even Costa Rica is banning GMOs

Among the counties that have declared themselves GMO free are Valverdevega, Santa Barbara, Upala, Puntarenas, Escazu, La Union, Palmares, San Ramon, Esparza, Orosi, Desamparados, Dota, Tibas, and Garabito. Discussions continue in the cantons of Montes de Oro, Leon Cortes, Mora, Acosta, San Isidro de Heredia, Alajuela, and Santo Domingo.

Last Wednesday, Dr. Seralini of the University of Caen in France gave a presentation and answered questions at the University of Costa Rica (UCR). Seralini is the doctor who conducted the French study with laboratory rats that were fed GM corn. The results of their study indicated that GMO’s could shorten life expectancy and increase the risk of cancer. From Inside Costa Rica.
+13 # Cdesignpdx 2013-03-25 00:33
Bets they don't eat their own food.
+7 # nice2blucky 2013-03-25 07:34
And Obama has to sign this legislation... why???
+9 # phrixus 2013-03-25 09:12
He could veto it but he won't because he is bought and paid for and a coward as well.
+8 # wantrealdemocracy 2013-03-25 09:33
Because he is working for the top 1%.
+4 # Walter J Smith 2013-03-27 08:33
Because he never saw a Corporation he didn't love handing public money and power to.
+18 # Sandy 2013-03-25 09:00
Why are things like this even allowed in a budget resolution. Allowing there to be a multitude of issues in a single "bill" with no line item veto just facilitates all this back room dealing. Wouldn't it be great if the president said, no, take it back, remove the Monsanto GMO protection, and then send it to me to sign. More everyday American's will learn about what Monsanto is up to and will appreciated being protected. But probably this was a trade-off for something "the other side wanted" so it will slip thru. There is no real transparency when all these "acts" are tucked into larger "bills" - make the congress vote for every little thing. So what if they have to vote 25-100 times a day. At least they and we will know what they voted for and how they voted.
+4 # dyannne 2013-03-25 12:56
Does anyone here know how to find out which senators voted for the bill? I'm interested in knowing how California senators voted, Boxer and Feinstein.
+2 # RnR 2013-03-27 05:59
Here you go, read it and weep:
+2 # Marxian 2013-03-25 17:55
Still think it's a good idea to surrender your Constitutional right to keep & bear arms? You just might need them to resist a rogue government that seems hell-bent to annihilate all life on the planet in the worship of Mammon. Their war cry is "Profits before People". Watch out for your local drones! As Dylan once sang, "the cops don't need you, and man they expect the same…"
+2 # RnR 2013-03-27 05:56
We're the proverbial frogs in pots.
+3 # Vegan_Girl 2013-03-26 16:22
Here is a link to a petition to our president asking him to veto this bill.
0 # brux 2013-03-28 01:07

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