Why Californians Should Vote

George Washington's picture

 Do We Have a Right to Know If Our Food Has Been Genetically Modified?Painting by Anthony Freda: www.AnthonyFreda.com.

Some smart people say that we shouldn’t vote tomorrow.  See this, this, this and this.

We believe that voting for a third party presidential candidate is a valuable act.    Even though California has more than 10% of the American population, California will obviously go to Obama, and so there is no reason for Californians to worry about swaying the election.  So we believe that Californians should definitely vote for the third party candidate of their choice.

But even if our California readers aren’t planning on voting in the presidential race, there is a very important reason to go to the polls and vote tomorrow.

We have a right to know if our food has been genetically modified, especially since genetically engineered foods have been linked to obesity, cancer, liver failure, infertility and all sorts of other diseases.   Watch  brief videos of scientists talking about this issue here and here.

Vote YES on proposition 37, to force the big agrichemical companies like Monsanto and DuPont to label genetically modified foods … so that we as consumers have the CHOICE about what we buy.

Even though past polls have shown Californians overhwhelmingly favor proposition 37, support has been plummeting since Monsanto and the other gmo giants have poured millions into defeating proposition 37 with deceptive advertisements.  Indeed, the initiative is now in a dead heat

Why have they been putting so much money into one state ballot? Because a labeling requirement in California would lead to labeling nationwide.

If you live in California, your vote for president won’t really be counted (other than towards matching funds for a third party) … but your vote for proposition 37 will count on a crucial issue for everyone’s health.

Note: Shopping at Whole Foods or other high-end "organic" stores does NOT guarantee that you'll avoid GMOs:

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DOT's picture

Introns, entrons,

Exxons, and Enrons.    I love ZH.



SmoothCoolSmoke's picture

Here's the problem w/ the world - people were not meant to live 80+ years.  Now, they think they are supposed to.

therearetoomanyidiots's picture

But, wait!   I thought only fools would vote and the responsible and non-treasonous citizen (I kid you not, someone said that on this site) would abstain.

LawsofPhysics's picture

Shouldn't the state of California be a bit more concerned about paying their fucking bills instead?

monogratis's picture

I have a better idea.  How about the bond holders suck a fat dick.

LawsofPhysics's picture

They will eventually.  I am sure that it will work out just fine too.  < sarc off >

monogratis's picture

I've got little sympathy for California (my state).  The people keep voting for more bond issuance and the bankers keep making a killing selling these bonds to morons.

LawsofPhysics's picture

You are correct.  San Francisco is well on it's way to becoming Singapore or New Dehli or just like any other corrupt "robber barron" metropolis on the planet.  Don't know if I would say that this is necessarily a good thing.

Marley's picture

I vote Yes on prop 37 because what you don't know will kill you.

DeadFred's picture

As with most of the propositions Cali get to deal with 37 is fatally flawed. Food producers can't guarantee the required zero tolerance for GMO is the food so all products will need to have a meaningless label saying possibly containing GMO products, except certified organics which are allowed to be labeled as GMO free even they suffer from the some the same transport chain problems as the standard food products. No one can promise that the guy who hauls your produce from the field to the processer is telling the truth that his truck has no residual GMO crops in the corners. If you are an organic producer you are allowed to assume cleanliness. If you are not organic you get sued. It's not a bad concept but the devil lives in the details on this proposition. California is dying from the effects of dozens of badly crafted propostions like this one. When will the people who put these things together learn to write a good law?

monogratis's picture

Then how are the farmers who sued Monsanto able to know if their fields are contaminated with GMO?  They test it.

FYI, no ballot proposition is perfect but you have to start somewhere.  California's Prop 215 has had many Senate Bills to clarify the law better.

California is not dying from bad propositions like this one.  This is hardly the proposition you should be fighting against.

mess nonster's picture

Yes and no. 37 is a good example of the proper intersection between the free market and govt regulation. In a free market, you have the right to tamper with the genome of your most important food crops. You also have the right to include sawdust, melamine, and coar tar if you want to. Someone somewhere will buy it.

But people also have the right to know what's in their food.

I know of a cookie manufacturer in LA who will most likely have to label his cookies as GMO If this passes, he would like to go non-GMO, but all non-GMO products are also organic, and if he gos organic, then his cookies would cost 5.50 each.

Short-term, he sees the labelling law as a business-killer. Long-term, he sees the health benefits of GMO labelling.

 Short-term, only certified organic products will be non-GMO, because organic certification is barred to all GMO crops.. But a demand for certified non-GMO, non-organic supply lines will be created by the law. Supply chain entrepeneurs will move in to the niche. Competition will bring the price of sequestering non-GMO commodities down. Farmers will get a premium for growing non-GMO crops.

Will my cookie-making friend go out of business in the meantime? Either that or he'll slap a GMO label on his product and then jump ship the second he is able to source non-GMO ingredients and certify that he's GMO-free.

monogratis's picture

GMO Wheat is the worst of all.  Your friend's cookie business should immediately find a non-GMO wheat source, which is nearly impossible.



monogratis's picture

Monsanto is in the same league as pharmaceutical companies.  They have so much money and they have a monopoly on the market that they are able to spend heavily on advertisements to influence public opinion.

California's proposition system is heavily abused by corporations, however, it does occasionally produce decent ballot measures such as Prop 37 that are worth passing for the sake of bringing the dialogue into the mainstream.

dolly madison's picture

I will be voting yes on prop 37 tomorrow!  I am not voting for any representatives at any level, but I am voting on most of the initiatives.  Participatory democracy is the only way to get real change.

Oldwood's picture

My first question would be, what were the effects of putting a skull and crossbones on tobbaco? How many people read what is on packaging now and of those how many understand it? There is also the question of unintended consequences. Obviuosly there have been significant advances in food production. If there is a push for organic foods, it might be great for small farmers, what effect will it have on food prices? I don't have answers, only questions. I do know that in a world that seems hugely regulated if measured by the quantity of laws and government employees, why does it seem we are so much more in peril? All this GMO stuff may well be bad, but food is as cheap as it ever has been and people seem to be living to such extended terms that it is bankrupting our government. What is the answer? While i can appreciate the concerns about food safety, I find it difficult to find government actions, that regardless of their good intentions, have actually been of benefit to society. Especially in CA.

TSA gropee's picture

I do not see the validity of the comparison. Food is a necessity, smoking is not.

Gully Foyle's picture

I'm always suspiscious of "scientists" linking anything to some type of damage.

Sure we had that horrendous tumor story.

But no one bothered to mention the questioning of their methodology


Authors of study linking GM corn with rat tumors manipulated media to prevent criticism of their work


Study on Monsanto GM corn concerns draws skepticism

Even Mother Jones has issues with the story


Does GMO Corn Really Cause Tumors in Rats?


I also find it very strange which scientists we should pick and choose to believe. If it disagrees with what we are predisposed we ignore it or claim bias. We champion only attitudes we agree with, even if we are proven wrong.

These posts are much like the woman in the Organic episode of Bullshit who instead of agreeing with the evidence of her own senses on how the non-organic Banana tastes better instead chooses to question Bananas.

Just once I would appreciate an unbiased discussion of just the facts, instead of wild eyed claims and propaganda which ends up costing the average person thousands of dollars a year due to irrational fears being played on.


Reptil's picture

Yes, it does cause the growth of tumors in these particular rats.
What went "wrong" in the study by the team of Séralini, is that both the "test group" and "control group" of rats wasn't large enough to prove, with certainty that this particular GMO corn causes cancer, according to the Biotech Oversight committee.

The Biotech Oversight Committee DID call for more testing, to answer the obvious question: Are these tumors limited to this particular type of rats fed on this particular GMO corn, or is it something that can be expected in ALL rats, and mammals.

So, it's not a victory for the GMO lobby per se, but of course they've told it like that. The research done was NOT discredited, Séralini never set out to prove the causality of cancer in mammals, only to COPY THE MONSANTO TESTS OF (ONLY) 90 DAYS TO THE FULL LIFESPAN OF THE TEST SUBJECTS, THE SAME TYPE OF RATS USED. They just wanted to show that the 90 days test of Monsanto was flawed, and that longer term effects (MASSIVE TUMORS) can be expected in the regular test subjects.

FYI, both Amflora (with a (totally useless) penicillin marker gene (WHY?!?!)), and MIR162 (pesticide producing corn) have been approved on the same sort (90 days) test by the EU Commission, or even less as the orginal Monsanto one on NK603. THIS ALL WHILE THE RESPONSIBLE COMMISIONER JOHN DALLI HAS BEEN SACKED BECAUSE OF CORRUPTION.

More information here: http://truth-out.org/news/item/12284-inside-the-controversy-over-a-frenc...

Fred C Dobbs's picture

Let GMO be labled as GMO and non GMO and/or organic be labled accordingly.  People who want to eat the cheaper GMO can do so.  With everyone predicting the future and its cost that is mine.  

GMO Is one of the worst things you can eat based on my readings.  I don't I have the links here but this is what I have read.  All mammal studies show them all going steril in 3 to 6 generations.  Listening to Alex Jones everyday makes me think that is not an accident.  Monsanto is doing this on purpose and by direction.  There is also kidney damage and cancer increases in the first generation of lab rats.  When Dr. Mercola's webiste is up go and read the articles and studies yourself.  




Inthemix96's picture

Heres a one for all you zhers out there to give a go.

Don't use F1 seeds as these are top line all the same.  Buy a pack of tomatoes, cut them up, take the seeds and dry them on paper towel.  (I have always grown my own veg, northern England, its a tradition that won't die here).

Next spring plant them when it starts warming up a touch, usually april for us.  And watch what grows from the one tomatoe you started with.  I have had large beef like tomatoes, small cherry toms and even yellow toms come from one red "Money Maker" tomatoe.

Try it.  And to top it off, use a fertaliser called "Tomorite", there is simply nothing like the taste of home grown tomatoes straight off the vine that havent been chilled.  Beautiful!!!

For anyone intereted, my personal favourite "Cherry" tomatoe is "Sweet Millions", IMHO the sweetest, but tasty, and fucking prolific fruiting I have ever grown.

You should be able to pick a pack of about 50 seeds for around £1.50, about $2.00 ??  Now thats some serious fruit for fuck all.

disabledvet's picture

guerrilla gardening New York, New Jersey and Connecticut...learn it, live it, love it. We are off the grid whether we want to be or not now...

I am Jobe's picture

Brainwashing Bitchezz. Sheeples will fall for anything. Amerika  a  nation of pussies. Long Live Hitler

goldsansstandard's picture

Concerned people wanted dolphin safe tuna, and there is now a non profit that defines what that is, and charges tuna packers the cost of enforcement.
The dolphin dsafe label is trusted by consumers and protected by copyright..
This is the model for how GMOs can be voluntarily identified.
Eventually, the State will not even be needed to enforce the copyright, but that is another story.

atomicwasted's picture

BS.  this is nothing more than full employment for plaintiffs attorneys.

John_Coltrane's picture

A bigger problem with modern agriculture is that it lacks genetic diversity (it is a monoculture).  That makes it more susceptible to a new pest or other blight.  However, deliberate modification of a plant genome using recombinant DNA isn't inherently more dangerous than cross breeding for a trait-just more efficient.  The issue for health it seems is does the modification cause any side effects (e.g. protein expression) not intended?  This is true of both approaches to genetic modification.  Just knowing a crop has been genetically modified gives one absolutely no information as to human nutrition-one needs a detailed assay of the protein and carbohydrate content as compared to a baseline/control crop.  In short, this prop is just another sort of nanny government initiative of limited utility but likely of significant cost.

Let me give a specific example:  Suppose I modified the corn genome to express the enzyme nitrogenese which allows a plant to directly fix (i.e. utilize) nitrogen gas, thus obviating the requirement for nitrogen type ferttilizers like ammonium nitrate.  The novel ability of this GMO corn to fix nitrogen doesn't alter the other biochemical characteristics of the plant unless introduction of this gene activates or represses some other natural gene.  This is possible but it is easily tested (such a result could also occur in cross-breeding methods)  So, such a GMO crop would not be inferior in nutrition to one lacking the nitrogenese enzyme-it would simply be cheaper and more efficient for the farmer. 

AurorusBorealus's picture

"unless introduction of this gene activates or represses some other natural gene.  This is possible but it is easily tested"


Is it easily tested?  What if the introduction of a new gene interacts with any one of the various livestock that use the crop for feed at the biochemical level (such as a prion or in the process of protein synthesis).  To really understand the implications and risks of genetic modifications to crops, would you not have to test the effects at every level of the food-chain?

BTW, I do not, on principle, oppose the use of genetic science in agriculture, I am simply asking the question.

IamtheREALmario's picture

To state the obvious: You make your statements, but you do not know for sure that they are true unless you are able to actually measure and prove they are true. However, if you expect to gain economic advantage from the supposition that your statements are true, then you should be held to a higher standard of proof that your statements are true.

Currently GMO crops are not held to that higher standard. The industry is self-regulating and therefore essentially unregulated since regulation costs money and people of this day,when given a chance, tend to be lazy, selfish and corruptable (but thast too will change by necessity).

GMO labeling provides the option for people decide on their own whether they should be lazy and not trust that others have not been lazy, selfish and corruptable... nothing more.

Gully Foyle's picture


Dude you just created the counterargument as the opposition is not held to a higher standard either. Read my above post regarding the tumor story which is even being questioned by Mother Jones.

The reality is both sides choose an approach before hand and manipulate the evidence to agree with them.

Neither is an honest player, and I have to assume the smaller names are less honest as they have much more to lose in funding.

Walt D.'s picture

George - I do think it is a good idea to buy your own non-genetically modified seeds. If Obama is reelected, we will probably end up with food lines a s well as food stamps. Might as well take out some insurance and learn to grow your own crops. Don't buy seeds that will only give you one crop.

ebworthen's picture

They will fuck with the food no matter what you do.

Grow your own if you want to be sure because there is too much MONEY to be made labeling things as "organic" whether they are or not to get that mammon.  Or, buy from local growers you know by reputation and word of mouth (or can go see).

Whole Foods is the Apple of grocery chains; feel good click cliche "I'm special" brand that you pay out the ass for.  Doesn't matter if slave labor produced it or how they did, you are "special" if you can afford it.

Vote if it makes you feel better but it will just create another cadre of bureaucrats and inspectors and public officials who can be bribed and bought and another tax burden.

God Bless you George, your heart is in the right place, but California and "laws" and "voting" aren't going to make a whit of difference in my opinion. 

Vote with your wallet, it is the only thing TPTB understand or care about.

Walt D.'s picture

Is this a good reason to vote no?


Alot of the anti-GM crowd believe that we are interfering with nature - if God had intended for us to eat GM food he would have put it in the Garden of Eden.

Joke - after Obama's nationalization of Detroit, we all get to eat GM losses! (particularly from Europe).

IamtheREALmario's picture

Obviously not. First, what helps one person can harm another ... especially if the tomato genetically modified to produce statins or similar chemicals. Statins have been found to have over 200 negative side effects. Who could have predicted that? Labeling does not say that it cannot or should not be available, only that it should not be slipped into people's diets without their knowledge.

If one company made Kethup, containing arsenic and cyanide, don't you think it should be on the label?

Fred C Dobbs's picture

Another great article George Washington.  I am surprised all of the comments here against 37.  Maybe people just don't know how bad it is for you.  I intended to post some articles from Dr. Mercola who is leading the fight against GMO but his website is down.  I am in California and will be voting yes on prop 37 tomorrow.  Everyone I know is voting yes too. 



my puppy for prez's picture

Good for you!  I wish I could vote in Cali today!  Hope t goes well.

Walt D.'s picture

Nearly all food you buy these days is genetically engineered.

Tomatoes have been genetically engineered (to be tasteless).

Look at the difference between a wild turkey and the turkey you buy for thanksgiving.

Have you ever seen what a wild strawberry looks like, or a cider apple?

What is a Meyer Lemon, or a tangelo?

This law is based on ingorance of genetics. If this law was passed and actual science was applied as opposed to junk science, just about everthing would need to have a warning label.

Reminds me of a true story in Quebec. They passed a law stating that a product had to be sold and labelled according to the most abundant ingredient. The net result - bacon had to labelled as fat!

George Washington's picture

There's a difference between B-R-E-E-D-I-N-G and genetic engineering...

Walt D.'s picture

Of course there is - GE is much more efficient. Why do you think Monsanto uses it? Besides, I don't think you can patent trial and error.

Reptil's picture

The nonsense disinfo you spread is easily disseminated but is nefarious at it's root: 

You're confusing cause with result: Monsanto's business is non ethical, it's profit based only. Efficiëncy on short term basis doesn't mean long term sustainabillity (= survival of biological organisms affected), just like some financial products have proven to be utter failures.

The biotech industrie as a whole has turned into a dead end alley.

1. The technique of forcefully inserting foreign DNA destabillises the DNA of the organism, and that of any organism that ingests it. This is called "horizontal cross contamination". In short, it cases DNA to fall apart, resequence, and react in unpredictable ways. The bacteria in our gut can take on the pesticide producing gene sequence, for example.

2. Glyphosate and other herbicides have been proven to be toxic to important soil flora, fauna, to useful insects, mammals, and human beings. This has led to new hitherto unknown pathogens becoming omnipresent. The FDA is aware of this, but doesn't act on it's scientist's recommendations.

3. The pesticides that are excreted by GM Corn have been proven to disrupt the human digestive system.

4. Glyphosate and other herbicides have been proven to cross the human placenta barrier.

et cetera...

Now that there's a growing N-American health and infertillity problem in livestock and human beings, which can be traced to food, a call to pursue this line of GM organism development unabated smacks of malicious intent. Under the umbrella of "sustainable" agriculture, wild, unpatented crops are seen and engaged as competition, to be taken out. DNA of animals, plants and fungi have been patented, and ownership of life under the current patent system has been secured. The precursor of BASF was IG Farben. And not under different management. To recall: Without IG Farben the rise of the Nazis would not have been possible. This direct lineage in corporate management has been ignored by mainstream media, since the advent of patenting of gene sequences, while there's been tragic mishaps in earlier products of these firms: These particular corporations have a history of disregarding human (or any) life.

Monsanto, Syngenta, BASF, DuPont are very much aware of the abillity to influence habitual patterns in a population, by influencing culture. They've build up powerful, well funded lobby groups. Large political entities like the Federal Government and the EU Commission have negotiated or have been put to work. There's been a collusion of government and corporate interests. Individual souverign governments already have signed binding non-revocable mandates like Codex Alimentarius, where all food and natural medicine will be regulated by a worldwide government (currently U.N.). Under this mandate agriculture will be harmonised.

And all this while the absolute financial elite now have private projects growing organic, non-GMO food in walled off cropfields. Obviously, they want to have a "plan B" in place, once this all comes crashing down.
This collapse of agriculture systems, centuries old is ongoing. Yet new markets are now tapped, like the European Union that recently allowed MIR162 (Syngenta) pesticide producing corn.

Prop 37 is not even a ban on these toxic and dangerous technologies, it's mandating labelling. Anyone against it doesn't have all his marbles, or is part of the same disruptive, destructive agenda that's pushing this course of action on a worldwide scale.

Junk as you wish. But do look it up yourself: it's all true. Even the most successful trader depends on food.

So... if you value your genes and health and that of your offspring, eat controlled non GM Organisms, and animals that fed on organic non GMO ONLY.

IamtheREALmario's picture

Yes, why indeed does Monsanto use genetic engineering, especially if it is completely unnecessary? Maybe because a plant that makes its own pesticide and the seeds of whichm when consumed, destroy mammal organs would never be cultivated if people knew and understood their effect. However, by keeping it secret, they can reap huge profits and help depopulate the planet at the same time. That;s why.

CPL's picture

Bacon is fat, it's the shittiest cut of meat coming from the belly and usually the reason it requires salting and smoking.  Next on the shit tier of a pig is the shoulder.  In Quebec it's one up'ed with Christs Ears one gets at a sugar shack.  It's deep fried skin...it's good, but same health benefits as eating your own cuticles with salt, deep fried.

my puppy for prez's picture

Bacon for President!  Yuuuuuuuum!!!

John_Coltrane's picture

But...as Homer Simpson might say,  "mmmmm  bacon".  It really tastes good doesn't it?  Just had some this morning.

My experience is that you can eat a wide variety of things as long as you're active.  That means vigorous exercise everyday.  That kind of discipline is quite lacking in most people and that's the reason for the obesity diabetes epidemic.  Exercise trumps diet effects every time.  But I like a good salad everyday too.


q99x2's picture

I'm voting for Gary Johnson and then for as much Government spending and tax cutting to accelerate the collapse. It is better that the revolution take place when people still are healthy enough to fight. The Greeks have waited until they are weak. Not good over there. You want to have some punch left in ya when you go up against the banksters.

disabledvet's picture

my money is on "America votes for more Government" to accelerate the collapse. We'll meet in the middle of mayhem somewhere, sometime and shake hands...

Augustus's picture

Has this twit, Geo Wash, ever advocated anything that would reduce costs or regulation?

How Much of that Sigsby Salt did Matt Simmons require you to consime to get the check as a confirmed shill?

GMO foods are fully safe, in as of themselves.

The problem that Geo Wsh is issueing the scare warning about is not a GMO problem but a general US dietary problem.  Too much sugar and grain in the diet are the problem.  GMO is not the relevant factor for the problems,

Read some of the Gary Taubes material about more fat in the diet and avoiding sugar and wheat.

IamtheREALmario's picture

Yes, the "twit" as you call him, has advocated truth and honesty. That would eliminate the need for regulation.... or am I stating the obvious.

Opinions are like assholes.

George Washington's picture

Monsanto and government are totally intertwined.  Your anti-government instincts are not wrong, sir ... but you're only seeing half of the picture:

disabledvet's picture

as a consumer of fast food i agree...we really are being lazy to some extent. the purpose of these "franken-foods" is of course not so that Whole Paycheck can give us some crazy marketing ploy and deceive us into buying something we really don't need but so the fast food industry can continue to employ millions for our convenience. that's why "the industry" fights so hard. "they employ millions" and "used to make billions."

vix is for kids's picture

Prop 37 isn't the only thing worth considering on the Cali ballot.  Many of us object to more taxes, and are interested in a variety of local land use issues.

Apathy is simply a condition; it is not a virtue.  Motivated zealots can take great advantage of an apathetic majority.  Vote for whomever or whatever you really want.  Selectively quoting dead George Carlin may sound clever, but it's really an excuse to sit on your ass and claim victimhood of the Powers That Be.