The Evening Blues - 6-24-19
Hey! Good Evening!
This evening's music features r&b singer and guitarist Jimmy Liggins. Enjoy!
Jimmy Liggins and His Drops Of Joy - Cadillac Boogie
"War will never cease until babies begin to come into the world with larger cerebrums and smaller adrenal glands."
-- H.L. Mencken
News and Opinion
In the wake of an aborted bombing raid against Iran called off by President Donald Trump just minutes before it was set to launch overnight, anti-war progressives and progressive Democrats on Friday are demanding an end to the era in which the nation's commander-in-chief is allowed to claim the authority to start a war or launch an unnecessary attack on a foreign country—a legacy created by nearly two decades of unchecked power and endless war.
According to the office of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, the most powerful Democrat in Congress, the White House did not even inform her of the plan to launch the attack despite a meeting with the president and top staffers just hours earlier.
In response to Trump's behavior, progressive Democrats running for president were among those denouncing the fact that he had come within just minutes of ordering a strike that would have sparked untold death and damage. "A war with Iran would be a disaster and lead to endless conflict in the region," said Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), a 2020 Democratic presidential candidate, on Friday morning. "Congress must assert its constitutional authority and stop Trump from going to war."
Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), also running for president, tweeted: "Donald Trump promised to bring our troops home. Instead he has pulled out of a deal that was working and instigated another unnecessary conflict. There is no justification for further escalating this crisis—we need to step back from the brink of war."
Trump’s Iran official refused to admit that the president can’t legally start a war pic.twitter.com/kN04aznT6h
— NowThis (@nowthisnews) June 21, 2019
In an email to its members on Friday, the progressive advocacy group Justice Democrats—which has organized to elect anti-war candidates over more hawkish members of the party—said that even though Trump called off the strike at the last minute, the overnight episode "highlights a disturbing reality that we must face—this could happen at any time."
And the threat of war continues, the group warned. "Without the light and power of public pressure," the email continued, "Trump's administration could wield the most powerful military in the world to suit their own political purposes. That's not just scary. It's disturbing on a fundamental level. The notion that unconfirmed executive officials and members of an administration that the majority of Americans did not vote for could condemn us to yet another multi-decade bloody conflict displays a structural problem in our foreign policy, and a structural problem in Trump's ability to wage unchecked war."
Donald Trump has pledged that Iran’s “absolutely broken” economy will face “major” new sanctions on Monday, as Iran countered it would take further steps to increase its nuclear programme unless Europe does more to shield it from US pressure over the coming fortnight.
The US president claimed that Iran wanted to negotiate because of the relentless economic pressure from sanctions. Tehran has so far rejected any talks while sanctions remain, and there was no sign of relief on Sunday. Despite calling off airstrikes that had been planned in reprisal to the downing of a US drone on Thursday, tensions in the Gulf remain high.
On Sunday, one person was reported dead and seven wounded in a suspected drone attack on a Abha airport in southern Saudi Arabia. The Houthi movement in Yemen, which is backed by Iran, claimed responsibility for the second drone attack on the Abha airport in 10 days, and also claimed to have struck the airport in Jizan, on the south-west Saudi coast.
John Bolton, Trump’s national security adviser, warned Iran not to mistake US prudence for weakness. It was reported that the US carried out a cyber-attack on an organisation linked to Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guards suspected of being involved in tracking and attacking tanker traffic and naval deployments in the Gulf. A US official told CNN the US cyber command targeted software that was used to track tankers targeted in attacks in the Gulf of Oman on 13 June. ...
Bolton was judged to have lost an inter-agency dispute last week when Trump pulled back from missile strikes on three Iranian military sites.
But goodness, think about poor Mustache Man and Pompous Maximus - imagine their frustration being just 10 minutes away from conflict initiation and ... nothing. Must be painful, especially for the Mustache Man.
President Trump loves a cliffhanger, both on his old reality TV show, “The Apprentice,” and apparently when conducting high-stakes global nuclear diplomacy. ... “We were cocked & loaded to retaliate,” he tweeted. Trump reportedly relished flaunting total control over the decision between war and peace, but in reality the brinkmanship showed just how quickly tough talk with Iran could spiral out of control into a conflict neither side really wants. ...
“It strikes me that we’ve got two leaders who really don’t know what the hell they’re doing,” said Robert Deitz, who held senior roles in both the CIA and National Security Agency under former president George W. Bush. ...
Much of the current tensions stem from the maximum pressure Trump has placed on Iran’s economy since abandoning President Barack Obama’s landmark 2015 nuclear deal. But rather than encourage the country to renegotiate, Trump’s policy appears to have only stiffened Iranian Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei’s spine, and prompted Iran to search for its own points of leverage against the United States — including through military action. ...
“The decision not to strike [Thursday night] is the decision of someone who clearly does not want a conflict,” said Ambassador Dennis Ross, who advised both former presidents Barack Obama and George H. W. Bush on the Middle East. “The danger is the potential for miscalculation, and it takes just one mistake. You can easily see the tit-for-tat and how it gets out of hand pretty quickly.”
Worth a full read:
John Bolton is the loudest voice inside the White House pushing for a military escalation to the administration’s “maximum pressure” strategy. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, for his part, is staking out the position that the 2001 Authorization for Use of Military Force allows the administration to take military action against Iran without congressional approval, an unusual and broadly criticized interpretation of congressional oversight.
Yet, there’s another omnipresent influence on Trump: $259 million given by some of the GOP’s top supporters to boost his campaign in 2016 and support Republican congressional and senate campaigns in 2016 and 2018. Those funds came from Sheldon and Miriam Adelson, Paul Singer and Bernard Marcus, donors who have made no secret, both through public statements and funding think tanks that support military action against Iran, of their desire for the United States to destroy the Islamic Republic. ... Adelson's role as the biggest funder of Republican House and Senate campaigns makes him a vital ally for Trump—who relied on Adelson’s campaign donations to maintain a Republican majority in the Senate and curb Republican losses in the House in the 2018 midterm election—and any Republican seeking national office.
Adelson publicly suggested using nuclear weapons against Iran and pushed for Trump to replace then-national security adviser H.R. McMaster with Bolton, partly due to the former’s perceived unwillingness to take a harder line on Iran. In 2017, the Zionist Organization of America, which receives much of its funding from the Adelsons, led a public campaign against McMaster, accusing him of being “opposed to President Trump’s basic policy positions on Israel, Iran, and Islamist terror.” ...
The billionaire Iran hawks—the Adelsons, Singer, and Marcus—made combined donations of over $259 million to GOP politicians in the past two cycles, making them some of the Republican Party’s most important donors. That quarter-billion-dollars doesn’t include contributions to dark money 501c4 groups and donations to 501c3 nonprofits, such as think tanks like FDD. News coverage of Trump’s slide toward war frames the discussion as a competition between his better instincts and a national security advisor and secretary of state who, to varying degrees, favor military action. But the $259 million that helped elect Trump and Trump-friendly Republicans must loom large over the president. ... These donors have made their policy preferences on Iran plainly known. They surely expect a return on their investment in Trump’s GOP.
It seems unlikely that a president would have to ask at the last minute about potential civilian casualties, unless the Pentagon has become so callous as to not have figured that into its war planning. A more likely scenario is that Donald Trump was in an epic struggle with his most hawkish national security advisers—Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and National Security Advisor John Bolton—and with himself, and that he could not decide what to do until literally the last ten minutes, using the excuse of civilian deaths to pull back.
Trump’s inner struggle on Iran has played out in public, mostly on Twitter. He has been sending seriously mixed signals to Iran: on the one hand he has told Iran he wants to negotiate with them to replace the nuclear deal he unwisely pulled out of last year and on the other hand he’s gone as far as threatening what amounts to genocide.
If Trump is engaged in a good-cop, bad-cop strategy with Iran, with Pompeo and Bolton playing very convincing bad cops, then Trump is a disaster as a good cop. He has been essentially playing good-cop, bad-cop with himself. We’ve got three bad cops here, Pompeo, Bolton and half of Trump, and one good cop, the other half of Trump.
If he were really committed to the anti-interventionist rhetoric of his campaign, which many of his followers still believe in, he would not have appointed Pompeo and Bolton to begin with, unless under extreme pressure from someone like Sheldon Adelson, the fanatically pro-Israel casino magnet and major Republican donor who once suggested the U.S. drop a nuclear bomb in the Iranian desert as a warning. Pompeo, and especially Bolton, have demonstrated that they are trying to run U.S. policy on Iran on their own, managing, manipulating or attempting an end run around Trump. ...
Instead of standing up to Bolton and Pompeo, who this week tried to peddle the ludicrous tale that Shi’ite Iran supports Sunni extremist al-Qaeda (while fighting it in Syria and just as the Bush administration tried to falsely tie al-Qaeda to Saddam), Trump instead runs to Fox News to whisper to the interviewer, as if they were alone, about the “military-industrial complex” being real and how much his advisers, presumably Pompeo and Bolton, “like war.”
He needs to tell them that. Last minute excuses about civilian deaths probably won’t work next time Pompeo and Bolton set Trump up for disaster.
Much more at the link:
The discussion about Trump's decision not to 'retaliate' for the shoot down of a U.S. drone by Iran is still dominating U.S. media. The accounts of the various 'sources' contradict each other. Most likely Trump saw the trap of an ever escalating military conflict and did not fell for it. The Pentagon prepared a strike plan as it always does, but Trump never approved its execution.
One new detail about the White House discussion emerged in a New York Times story on the issue. The Pentagon and the White House are not sure where the Global Hawk drone came down. They do not trust that the U.S. Central Command is telling them the whole truth:
On Friday night, the Pentagon confirmed the presence of a second surveillance aircraft, a Navy P-8A Poseidon, which officials said took photographs of the drone being shot down. But a senior Trump administration official said there was concern inside the United States government about whether the drone, or another American surveillance aircraft, or even the P-8A manned aircraft flown by a military aircrew, actually did violate Iranian airspace at some point. The official said the doubt was one of the reasons Mr. Trump called off the strike.
An earlier version of the same NYT story, quoted here, included this:
The delay by United States Central Command in publicly releasing GPS coordinates of the drone when it was shot down — hours after Iran did — and errors in the labeling of the drone’s flight path when the imagery was released, contributed to that doubt, officials said.
A lack of provable “hard evidence” about the location of the drone when it was hit, a defense official said, put the administration in an isolated position at what could easily end up being the start of yet another war with a Middle East adversary — this one with a proven ability to strike back.
Iran's Foreign Minister Javad Zarif added to the doubt when he gave the exact point where the drone was targeted:
At 00:14 US drone took off from UAE in stealth mode & violated Iranian airspace. It was targeted at 04:05 at the coordinates (25°59'43"N 57°02'25"E) near Kouh-e Mobarak.
We've retrieved sections of the US military drone in OUR territorial waters where it was shot down. pic.twitter.com/pJ34Tysmsg
— Javad Zarif (@JZarif) June 20, 2019
Shortly before Zarif posted the above, the Iranian Fars news agency distributed a video from the shoot down and an hour later a video that showed the flight path of the U.S. drone. Yesterday Iran retrieved debris of the drone and distributed photos of it. Experts said that the material is genuine.
Donald Trump has dismissed a United Nations request for the FBI to investigate the murder of the dissident journalist Jamal Khashoggi, suggesting it would jeopardise American weapons sales to Saudi Arabia. A report on Khashoggi’s assassination published last week by the UN special rapporteur on extrajudicial killings said the US should open an FBI inquiry and “pursue criminal prosecutions within the United States, as appropriate”.
But Trump brushed the proposal aside in an interview broadcast by NBC’s Meet the Press on Sunday. Asked if he would allow the FBI to investigate, Trump said: “I think it’s been heavily investigated.” Asked who had investigated, the president replied: “By everybody. I mean … I’ve seen so many different reports.” ...
The UN special rapporteur blamed the Saudi government for the murder and said there was credible evidence that Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and other senior officials were responsible. Trump told NBC the murder “really didn’t come up” in a call this week with the prince, a key ally of the president’s senior adviser and son-in-law Jared Kushner, who among other responsibilities is charged with implementing a plan for peace between Israel and the Palestinians.
Trump also suggested Saudi Arabia was no worse than other states in the Middle East, which he called a “vicious, hostile place”, adding: “Look at Iran, look at other countries, I won’t mention names.”
The White House has unveiled a $50bn Palestinian investment and infrastructure proposal aimed at supporting its much-anticipated but still unreleased “deal of the century” Middle East peace plan. The scheme, which calls for a mix of public and private financing and intends to create at least a million new jobs for Palestinians, was posted to the White House website before a two-day conference in Bahrain.
The so-called “Peace to Prosperity” workshop in Manama on Tuesday and Wednesday is being held amid heavy skepticism about its viability, and outright opposition from Palestinian leaders.
Speaking to Reuters on Saturday, Donald Trump’s adviser and son-in-law Jared Kushner, who is behind the plan, said: “I laugh when [Palestinian leaders] attack this as the ‘deal of the century’. This is going to be the opportunity of the century if they have the courage to pursue it.” Kushner said some Palestinian business executives had confirmed their participation in Bahrain, but declined to identify them. The overwhelming majority of the Palestinian business community will not attend, businessmen in the West Bank city of Ramallah told Reuters.
Several Gulf Arab states, including Saudi Arabia, will attend. Their presence, some US officials say privately, appears intended in part to curry favor with Trump as he takes a hard line against Iran.
Turkey’s opposition has won a high-stakes rerun of the Istanbul mayoral election, a serious blow to President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and a landmark victory in a country where many feared democracy was failing. Shortly after initial results pointing to a landslide win for the opposition coalition candidate, Ekrem Imamoglu, emerged on Sunday evening, the candidate of the ruling Justice and Development party (AKP), Binali Yildirim, conceded and congratulated his rival.
The repeat election, designed to undo Imamoglu’s narrow surprise win in the 31 March contest, was an unprecedented test for both Turkey’s fragile democratic institutions and Erdogan’s political future. Yildirim’s swift concession saved the AKP the embarrassment of watching the vote count add up to a second defeat, but the loss is likely to lead to intense new power struggles inside the coalition government. Opposition parties were jubilant. ...
The president issued his congratulations to Imamoglu on Twitter after initial results showed that with 99% of ballots counted the People’s Republican party (CHP) candidate had increased his lead in March, of 13,000 votes, to an astonishing 777,000, or 54%. Crowded parties broke out on Istanbul’s main shopping streets and in liberal neighbourhoods. ...
Losing Istanbul for a second time is an unthinkable outcome for the AKP. Turkey’s biggest city and economic heart, it accounted for 31% of GDP in 2017 and is an important driver of the government’s unofficial patronage networks. It has been controlled by the ruling party and its Islamist predecessors for a quarter of a century.
Donald Trump was accused of using fearful migrants as “political pawns”, after postponing planned weekend raids and mass deportations of people in the US illegally. The president granted a two-week reprieve to up to 2,000 families who were due to be targeted by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (Ice) agents, following a request from Nancy Pelosi, the Democratic speaker of the House of Representatives.
But Trump said in a tweet on Sunday the raids would go ahead later this month if Democrats did not allow him to tighten laws to make it more difficult for people to claim asylum in the US. “Probably won’t happen, but worth a try,” Trump said. “Two weeks and big Deportation begins!”
While activists expressed relief at the passing of immediate danger, many condemned Trump’s casual handling of a decision that could lead to migrant parents being taken from children born in the US. “This is all a game to him while people live in deep fear,” said Vanita Gupta, president and chief executive of the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights. “Human beings as political pawns.” ...
Trump’s climbdown followed threats from Democrats in Congress to withhold $4.5bn in funding for law enforcement and humanitarian aid at the US-Mexican border, where there has been a surge in migrant arrivals. Many are fleeing violence in central America.
Attorneys who work with migrant children recently visited two Border Patrol processing centers along the U.S.-Mexico border — and what they saw paints a bleak picture of the Trump administration’s treatment of child migrants. The attorneys said that hundreds of kids are being held in filthy, overcrowded, and increasingly dangerous conditions at the Border Patrol station in Clint, Texas and the Ursula processing center in McAllen, Texas — often for weeks at a time. The facilities are riddled with flu and lice outbreaks and often lack proper adult supervision. Some older kids even have to take care of the younger ones.
“I have not seen conditions like this before,” said Warren Binford, a law professor at Williamette University and part of the team who went to Clint, Texas. “They [Border Patrol agents] say, ‘We are on your side. Children don’t belong here; they need to get to appropriate facilities because we can’t appropriately care for them here.’” ...
Children at the Clint facility described being forced to sleep in crowded “cells,” Binford said. Some were given mats to sleep on. Others, including babies, were forced to sleep on the floor. “The children consistently described that numerous children sleep on a single mat. Some have six children on a mat,” she said.
Overcrowding at the station has facilitated the spread of diseases, including the flu, Binford said. The problem has been made worse by filthy conditions. Some of the cells have open toilets. Fifteen children in the facility have the flu and 10 others have been quarantined, according to the Associated Press. “There is no soap for the kids to wash their hands with. We saw many, many sick children,” she said. “We immediately saw children who were coughing and had runny noses. They had mucus all over their shirts.”
Earlier this month, the Trump administration argued in court that children in Border Patrol custody aren’t entitled to things like soap, toothbrushes, or towels.
Ocasio-Cortez Not Apologizing to Kevin McCarthy: “He Should Apologize to the Children That Have Been Separated From Their Parents”
Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., fired back on Thursday at House Republican Leader Rep. Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., who had demanded that she apologize for her use of the term “concentration camps.”
“I think he should apologize for the deliberate conflation and attack on these terms. I think he should apologize for the conditions that he’s supporting on the border,” Ocasio-Cortez said on Capitol Hill. “He should apologize for his support for widespread human rights abuses — that’s what he should apologize for, and until he stops supporting the absolute dehumanizing conditions on our border, I will not apologize for holding him to account for it.” ...
Ocasio-Cortez argued that the GOP is turning the border crisis into a “controversy about words instead of turning it into a controversy about why kids are dying on our border with U.S. dollars.”
The last abortion clinic in Missouri officially lost its license on Friday, after the state health department refused to renew it. Planned Parenthood of St. Louis will remain open and performing abortions for now, thanks to a court order. But if it closes, Missouri will become the only state in the nation without an abortion clinic.
“While Gov. [Mike] Parson and his political cronies are on the wrong side of history, nothing changes right now for patients who need access to abortion at Planned Parenthood,” Colleen McNicholas, a clinic physician, said in a statement to the Kansas City Star. “We will continue providing abortion care for as long as the court protects our ability to do so.”
Liberals have watched helplessly as President Donald Trump and the Republican Senate reshaped the judicial system over the past two years. Now outside groups are pouring gobs of cash into digital ads in the hopes of harnessing progressive rage and turning the courts into a major 2020 issue.
In a media push likely to ramp up as the election approaches, new advocacy groups and Democratic candidates have put big bucks behind Supreme Court-related messaging on major social media platforms. The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee has thrown more than $1 million into Facebook alone over the past 90 days, more than every presidential candidate other than Trump and Joe Biden. ...
Such calls for action have crescendoed since Republicans confirmed Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh last year despite sexual assault allegations. A string of southern states passed restrictive abortion laws seen by many as thinly veiled attempts to roll back Roe v. Wade this spring. And Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said in late May that he’d push through another Supreme Court nomination before the 2020 election — contrary to his obstruction of Obama nominee Merrick Garland’s confirmation process in the lead up to 2016.
Democratic and liberal groups hope to continue riding the resulting outcry in their support of candidates for the Senate and White House.
Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., on Friday rolled out a plan to ban private prisons and detention facilities and stop companies from profiting off mass incarceration. The 2020 hopeful introduced the proposal ahead of her appearance at the NALEO Presidential Candidate Forum, addressing the largest gathering of Latinx policymakers in the country.
“Washington hands billions over to corporations profiting off of inhumane detention and incarceration policies while ignoring the families that are destroyed in the process,” Warren wrote in a Medium post outlining the policy. “We need to call that out for what it is: corruption. Incarcerating and detaining millions for profit doesn’t keep us safe. It’s time to do better.”
Her proposal would shut down federal private detention facilities by ending all contracts the Federal Bureau of Prisons and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement have with private detention providers. Private prisons have expanded significantly over the last two decades, and companies like CoreCivic and GEO Group have profited immensely from the business of incarceration. Since Donald Trump’s entry into office, and due to his administration’s aggressive immigration policies, business for private prisons is booming.
“Washington works hand-in-hand with private prison companies, who spend millions on lobbyists, campaign contributions, and revolving-door hires — all to turn our criminal and immigration policies into ones that prioritize making them rich instead of keeping us safe,” she wrote.
This is quite the troll. https://t.co/QEOweL3lyQ
— Aaron Blake (@AaronBlake) June 21, 2019
Teresa Muñoz was riding her motorbike along her regular delivery route on a winding Guatemala road, carrying the homemade cheese she sold for a living, when she saw in her rearview mirror one of the white sedans that employees of the Escobal silver mine drove. Mining company cars had followed her before, but this time, the vehicle swerved. The driver rammed her motorbike, pitching her into the street, and then sped off. Muñoz was left bruised and scraped, convinced they’d meant to kill her.
For years, she had been a leader in the fight against the silver mine, the project of Tahoe Resources, a U.S.-headquartered Canadian company. Located in the southeastern Guatemala city of San Rafael las Flores, Escobal was on its way to becoming one of the largest silver mines in the world. Muñoz and her family helped organize community votes on the mine, participated in rallies to stop production, and educated people about the mine’s potential harms.
Rainfall in the mountains that contain the Escobal mine feeds the Los Esclavos River and a multitude of natural springs, whose waters fuel the production of coffee and onions in the region, grown for export. For sustenance, families grow beans, corn, and squash in the forested hillsides. More than half the surrounding population lives below the poverty line, making them particularly vulnerable to changes in the local hydrology. Mines like Escobal use massive quantities of water and divert flows in ways that can disrupt communities’ access. Such projects have also been known to leach heavy metals into drinking water sources.
The mountains are part of the territory of the Xinca people, an Indigenous group whose language and culture were nearly wiped out by Spanish colonizers and the Catholic Church. For years, Tahoe Resources argued that there were no Xinca people left in the communities surrounding the mine who would require any consultation. They were wrong. In fact, the mine’s denial of the Xincas’ existence fueled a regional reclamation of the identity. “Soy Xinca” — “I am Xinca” — has become the rallying cry under which Muñoz and others fight.
In response to the anti-mining movement in San Rafael, Tahoe hired firms run by U.S. and Israeli ex-special forces veterans to protect the project and lobbied the Guatemalan government to quash the resistance. Over the course of the 12-year conflict, mine opponents have been shot, imprisoned, and even killed.
Canadian scientists have examined an exhaustive collection of rain records for the past 50 years to confirm the fears of climate scientists: bouts of very heavy rain are on the increase. They have measured this increase in parts of Canada, most of Europe, the U.S. Midwest and Northeast, northern Australia, Western Russia and parts of China.
From 2004 to 2013, worldwide, bouts of extreme rainfall rain increased by 7%. In Europe and Asia, the same decade registered a rise of 8.6% in cascades of heavy rain. The scientists report in the journal Water Resources Research that they excluded areas where the records were less than complete, but analyzed 8,700 daily rain records from 100,000 stations that monitor rainfall worldwide. They found that from 1964 to 2013, the frequency of catastrophic downpours increased with each decade.
“By introducing a new approach to analyzing extremes, using thousands of rain records, we reveal a clear increase in the frequency of extreme rain events over the recent fifty years when global warming accelerated,” said Simon Papalexiou, of the University of Saskatchewan’s college of engineering. “This upward trend is highly unlikely to be explained by natural climate variability. The probability of this happening is less than 0.3% under the model assumptions used.”
As temperatures rise, evaporation increases. A warmer atmosphere can absorb more moisture: capacity increases by 7% with each extra degree Celsius on the thermometer. Moisture absorbed into the atmosphere will inevitably fall again. The world has warmed by at least 1°C in the last century. ... “If global warming progresses as climate model projections predict, we had better plan for dealing with frequent heavy rain right now.
An interesting article worth a full read:
Industrial food systems have reduced food to a commodity, to “stuff” that can then be constituted in the lab. In the process both the planet’s health and our health has been nearly destroyed. Seventy five percent of the planetary destruction of soil, water, biodiversity, and 50 percent of greenhouse gas emissions come from industrial agriculture, which also contributes to 75 percent of food-related chronic diseases. It contributes 50 percent of the greenhouse gases driving climate change. Chemical agriculture does not return organic matter and fertility to the soil. Instead it is contributing to desertification and land degradation. It also demands more water since it destroys the soil’s natural water-holding capacity. Industrial food systems have destroyed the biodiversity of the planet both through the spread of monocultures, and through the use of toxics and poisons which are killing bees, butterflies, insects, birds, leading to the sixth mass extinction.
Biodiversity-intensive and poison-free agriculture, on the other hand, produces more nutrition per acre while rejuvenating the planet. It shows the path to “zero hunger” in times of climate change.
The industrial agriculture and toxic food model has been promoted as the only answer to economic and food security. However, globally, more than 1 billion people are hungry. More than 3 billion suffer from food-related chronic diseases. It uses 75 percent of the land yet industrial agriculture based on fossil fuel intensive, chemical intensive monocultures produce only 30 percent of the food we eat. Meanwhile,
The mad rush for fake food and fake meat, ignorant of the diversity of our foods and food cultures, and the role of biodiversity in maintaining our health, is a recipe for accelerating the destruction of the planet and our health. In a recent article “How our commitment to consumers and our planet led us to use GM soy,” Pat Brown, CEO & founder of Impossible Foods, says: “We sought the safest and most environmentally responsible option that would allow us to scale our production and provide the Impossible Burger to consumers at a reasonable cost.” Given the fact that 90 percent of the monarch butterflies have disappeared due to Roundup ready crops, and we are living through what scientists have called an “insectageddon,” using GMO soya is hardly an “environmentally responsible option.”
At a time when across the world the movement to ban GMOs and Roundup is growing, promoting GMO soya as “fake meat” is misleading the eater both in terms of the ontology of the burger, and on claims of safety. The “Impossible Burger” based on GMO, Roundup sprayed soya is not a “safe” option. Zen Honeycutt and Moms across America just announced that the Impossible Burger tested positive for glyphosate. “The levels of glyphosate detected in the Impossible Burger by Health Research Institute Laboratories were 11 X higher than the Beyond Meat Burger. The total result (glyphosate and its break down AMPA) was 11.3 ppb. Moms Across America also tested the Beyond Meat Burger and the results were 1 ppb. ... Only 0.1 ppb of glyphosate has been shown to destroy gut bacteria, which is where the stronghold of the immune system lies.”
Also of Interest
Here are some articles of interest, some which defied fair-use abstraction.
A Little Night Music
Jimmy Liggins - No More Alcohol
Jimmy Liggins and His Drops Of Joy - Lookin' For My Baby
Jimmy Liggins w/Earl Hooker - Blues For Love
Jimmy Liggins and His Drops Of Joy - That's What's Knockin' Me Out
Jimmy Liggins - I'll Never let You Go
Jimmy Liggins - Troubles Goodbye
Jimmy Liggins - Talking That Talk
Jimmy Liggins - Boogie Woogie King
Jimmy Liggins - Come Back Home
Jimmy Liggins - Last Round