Food and Farming
The Department of Agriculture determined in April that a cow from California died from an always-fatal disease that triggers dementia and can be transmitted to people. The chilling news about the latest mad cow case was no surprise for me. I’ve been trying for two decades to stop the cattle feeding practices that transmit bovine spongiform encephalopathy, commonly called mad cow disease.
Summertime can be a carefree, relaxing season filled with cookouts, backyard picnics, and trips to the ice cream truck.
Rather than find ways to cooperate with the natural world, America’s agribusiness giants reach for the next quick fix in a futile effort to overpower nature. Their attitude is that if brute force isn’t working, they’re probably not using enough of it.
The big beer brewers often admonish us imbibers of their products to “Drink Responsibly.” Well, I say back to them: Lobby Responsibly.
A Pioneer seed saleswoman introduced the first genetically modified crop to my central Missouri county in the winter of 1996 at a University Extension Soils and Crop Council meeting. She told us that if a farmer planted this genetically engineered soybean, then sprayed the herbicide Roundup all over his field, weeds would die but the soybeans would survive.
Attention foodies: There’s a new craze in Cuisine World, and it’s going 180 degrees in the opposite direction from the much-publicized healthy-eating movement.
If you invented a pill that offers long life, good health, and a body to be proud of, you’d make a fortune. Bottles would fly off the shelves.
Maybe you thought the lowest possible point of Republican miserliness was reached when Ronald Reagan’s Secretary of Agriculture proposed that ketchup be counted as a vegetable in the school lunch program. If so, you’ve not taken a peek at the GOP’s astoundingly penurious budget proposal recently pasted together in a fit of ideological extremism by the party’s budget guru, Rep. Paul Ryan.