I watched The Future of Food this morning, which was really interesting. It was mostly about how evil Monsanto is and how wrong it is that patents on genes and living organisms are allowed now. For example, they showed that once Monsanto's genetically engineered plants are spread into a farmer's crops (in their main example, seeds had fallen off a passing truck), they then become property of Monsanto. This was even upheld by the Supreme Court, regardless of the notion that the farmers had in no way actively participated in securing the cross-pollination; it wasn't even an issue that it was a mishap. It was still found to be under Monsanto's patent, therefore it was their plant and they had to be paid for it.
The whole film was very anti-genetically-engineered food. It reminded me that I had seen an episode of Penn & Teller: Bullshit! in which Penn and Teller were outraged that anyone would be against it. Their point of view was that genetically engineering food allows for more crops per acre and was very much in the vein of helping starving third world countries. That whole view point was tossed aside in about five minutes of Future of Food, when they explained how it wasn't the lack of food making these countries starve. It's when the USA subsidizes our crops (because the farmers don't make enough of a return on the crops to stay afloat) and then it affects the farming from other countries (the third world countries) and essentially boots out the farmers. It went on into greater detail than I can.
And I'm sure there is pro-green science out there, but it's not the science being endorsed by major companies. Monsanto was even quoted saying that it wasn't their job to make sure it was safe, that's the FDA's job. Monsanto's job is to sell as much of it as possible. However, the film claimed, the government hardly ever does regulate it. They went through a whole list of politicians in Washington (including the Supreme Court), who not only served in Washington but had held positions on boards or as legal representation for these companies, largely Monsanto. And in the end, food is not required to say on the label when it is genetically engineered. (Because where there's no label, there's no easy liability). How does that just NOT look shady? But it's all just interesting; I still try to keep an objective mind when watching these "documentaries," who obviously have their own agenda.
And speaking of food, I copied this off imdb's news info. It's really refreshing; there is absolutely no way in hell measure like this would ever be taken over here. It kinda reminds me of the check-out aisles in Vermont that are candy and tabloid free.
U.K. Bans Junk Food Ads in Kids Programs
OFCOM, the British television watchdog, announced today (Friday) that junk food advertising will be banned on all children's programming. The ban will apply even to evening programs that have an above-average audience of children younger than 16, including music channels and many awards ceremonies. OFCOM estimated that the ban will cost broadcasters about $75 million per year in advertising revenue. OFCOM said that studies had led it to conclude that "the case for intervention is clear." Some health advocates said that the ban was too limited and should extend to all programs aired before 9:00 p.m. In a statement, Dr. Vivienne Nathanson, head of science and ethics at the British Medical Association, said, "OFCOM clearly believes that TV advertising has an effect on children's eating habits, yet it does not have the courage to recommend a more comprehensive ban."
But more importantly, Bond is kicking ass at the box office. Too bad it was competing against a kids' movie here in the US. It didn't have a prayer...though I'm impressed it came as close as it did. How the HELL it didn't top Tomorrow Never Dies is beyond me.