Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Monsanto-Bayer & the Jolly Green Giant makeover

Industrial Giant in EcoGreen Clothing 😕 ???
Well yeaterday the world was treated to a public relations makeover bit of news from Bloomberg, announcing that new Ag giatn of Monsanto-Bayer was going ecogreen. Suddenly they have a love affair wit mycorrhizal fungi and beneficial bacteria. This was strange, since for decades they have done nothing but push synthetics as to mankind's answer to a modern improved world which corrects Nature's flaws, imperfections and bad designs. For the past few years now, even Monsanto and Agro-Chemical technology defenders, under their coward cloaked avatars as well known professional Internet Trolls have been demonizing and spitting vitriol at anyone opposed to synthetics and assigning anti-science labels towards anyone who spoke about mycorrhizal fungi and beneficial bacteria as the sustainable answer for agriculture. But low and behold, we are told Monsanto in partner with a Danish company called, Novozymes, have created a Corn inoculant seed coating called, Acceleron B-300 SAT, which will be released in 2017. Supposedly this product will produce more roots which causes higher yields. I'm not going to elaborate on what the public relations piece has to say about their latest miracle being championed as brand new. Fact is, this has been found in nature for countless 1000s of years which has been pointed out by many good scientists, but only now are they finally getting on board. You wouldn't know this from reading the article as it is being spun as a completely brand new discovery.
Bloomberg News: Monsanto Says Next Breakthrough for Farmers Is a Friendly Fungus

Gallery Image by National Geographic

I'm all for mycorrhizal fungi and beneficial bacteria as I have an entire record of belief and practice within my Earth's Internet blog. But these fungal and bacterial tools have to also work in conjection with other natural ecosystem checks and balances found out in Nature to work effectively. This Monsanto-Bayer version is being promoted as more efficiently working with the synthetics they still want to sell farmers for a hefty price, so we're not exactly talking true ecogreen here. There are still fortunes to preserve here.

Back in 2017, National Geographic, published an article called, "The New Green Revolution," where they often extol the virtues of science in the general sense as what will save mankind. For example, they still champion the old 1950s Green Revolution as life saving to mankind. But was it really ? The article had a meme which in reality was more of a religious faith affirmation which said, "Science prevented the last food crisis. Can it save us again?" Seriously ? Science did this ? Nobody champions science as much as a scientist does. The problem with the words, 'Science' and 'Scientist' is that they are generally used in the most general and broadest sense which often renders them meaningless. Diehard "Culture of Science" followers have a terrible time differentiating between good and bad science or scientists. In their worldview, anything that makes them feel warm and fuzzy all over is considered good science (think anonymous internet trolls), while something they don't like is quickly labeled (without taking the time for true critical reflection) 'pseudoscience' or as the Washington State University Garden Professors would say, "Voodoo Science." But are scientists really all that realiable ? It depends on who they are, who they work for and what motivates and drives them. There is also the problem of the flaw of imperfection which drives personal bias and prejudice. This is why all Science Societies including Academia (those who champion GMO safety for no other reasons than the consensus says so) are just as much subject to group think herd mentality just as any other type of human institution whether they be political, business or religious. Science and Scientists are not above all this.
Analyzing exactly what Science saved Mankind from be the Green Revolution
Prior to the so-called green revolution, all of mankind had just come out of a terrible World War II. Pestilence and famine are generally the natural consequences that follow wars, hence the symbolic biblical references to the ride of the four horsemen. Firey colored horse (war), pale horse (pestilence/famine) & black horse (death). But if we examine the evidence on what science saved us from, we find that the so-called science saved us from the consequences of the misuse and abuse of science. And it's tough to differentiate science here, because the very industrial science corporations who built the bombs and other munnitions which brought us famine and pestilence are also the same ones in the 1950s who said they could also save mankind. Unfortunately their remedy was synthetics, the very same synthetics which killed people during previous years. Monsanto & Bayer were at the forefront for both the Allies & Axis power's death machines. Fast forward through the bogus green revolution to the present with all it's secretive dirty history since and we are now told to put our faith and trust in them once again because they found out about Nature and only they are capable of harnessing Nature for the ultimate good of mankind. 

The Bloomberg public relations piece insisted this technology would bring greater yields, but frankly speaking, yields are truly meaningless. What good did bumper crop yields do for farmers and starving people last year ? Did anyone read this year's news on the 7 billion dollar payout in subsidies for grain farmers ? Once again, Bloomberg brought us the news back in April 2016 of the $7 Billion Farm Subsidy which would bailout farmers because of horribly low prices of corn and soy. Organic Farmers BTW do not qualify for participation in this program because they do not conventionally farm crops by investing heavily in synthetic inputs for which these very subsidies help reimburse these farmers who follow the industrial ideology. The reality is in fact that the subsidy is mainly a guarantee the Agro-Chemical and Biotech companies are paid monies owed to them. This US Government safety net has been a huge advantage for US Farmers over farmers from other countries. For example, remember the News of how hurt poor indigenous Maize/Corn farmers of southern Mexico were hit hard in their bank accounts when the dirt cheap American Corn flooded Mexican marketplaces after the NAFTA agreement ? It will be interesting to see if any subsidies will be forthcoming to these same American farmers who decide to purchase the new Novozyme fungal inoculated seeds. Although they will still use the conventional synthetic weed, insect and fungal pesticides, not to mention synthetic fertilizer inputs. Maybe it will be welfare as usual. Another interesting development will be how the fungi respond to synthetic inputs being used since the plant will shut down chemical signaling for biosymbiosis association. Many questions remain and will probably be unanswered. But you can count on more smokescreening as various marketing schemes are employed to keep the industrial status quo in power over the long haul even if the world wants to go completely organic.

There have been many legit companies and their scientists who have championed Mycorrhizal fungi as a number one option for all manner of plant health care and ecosystem management. Mike Amaranthus, Paul Stamets, Dr Donald Marx, Dr Gary Harman, Dr Kris Nichols, Dr Wendy Taheri, etc. Now in the mean time, if you want some legitimate mycorrhizal inoculum, there are several long time companies that have been totally immersed within the mycology field long before Monsanto and Bayer gave their phony blessing to officially make mycorrhizzas cool.

Professional Companies & their Scientists who have been doing this for years

Thursday, November 17, 2016

"I Welcome Questions - I Hate Assumptions," by Chris Clarke - *cough-cough* - I mean by 'Red Haircrow'

Untold History: The Survival of California's Indians
by Science Writer, Chris Clarke
Chris Clarke
Today I read an interesting article (lesson) on the history of California Indians by Science Writer/Author & Poet, Chris Clarke of Joshua Tree California. I've been following Chris for some time now ever since I first discovered through google an article on the Mojave River Chub which is a rare desert fish. Although once more common than now, Desert Fish in general are becoming more and more rare as their riparian stream or spring fed pool habitats are rapidly disappearing like most everything else on Earth. Chris writes numerous articles on various environmental issues, but his desert pieces are closest to my heart. See, I'm by nature a desert rat like Chris and for the past 10 years I have lived in a Scandinavian (Göteborg) Boreal forest environment which for a desert rat is something like a sort of Frozen Hell. Well, that's how the middle eastern refugees here in Sweden & Finland describe the place where they've been relocated in those far north wilderness detention camps far away from the contemporary Scandinanvian designed utopian centres to the south. His article on California native Indians had two opening paragraphs which immediately captured my attention. About a week ago, when talking to my Swedish wife about what first got me interested in California native plants, so I googled an old classic 1964 docu-drama film about the Nicoleños natives who once lived on San Nicolas Island off the Southern California coast who were evacuated in the early 19th century by the Spanish padres of the California mission system. These people were molested and many killed after an attack by Alaskan Fur Traders. But one lovely young woman remained behind and the account in the film documents her survival. Chris' words were similar to an article I read a few years back by a native American born in Germany who also writes about his hertitage from the same perspective as Chris Clarke. But first, here are Chris Clarke's two opening paragraphs from his latest article: 
If you grew up in California, you probably learned most of what you know about the history of California Indians while you were in fourth grade. All that several generations of Californians learned of the state’s Native peoples can be summed up thusly:   
California was originally populated by people who did not farm but made very nice baskets. The Spanish padrés arrived, and California Indians moved to the Missions to learn farm labor. Some of them died there, mainly because their immune systems weren’t sophisticated enough to handle modern diseases. By the time Americans arrived Native Californians had mainly vanished somehow. The Gold Rush happened and California became a modern society with factories and lending institutions. Finally, in 1911, Ishi, the last wild California Indian, wandered out of the mountains so he could live a comfortable life in a museum basement.
That was my experience as well. The fourth grade class in my elementary school gave us all a picture of the seemingly simple idyllic life of the average Mission Indian under Spanish colonization and domination. Why, we even went on some of those Pepper Drive Elementary School sponsored field trips to the original Mission in San Diego just above the present day Mission Valley overlooking the San Diego River. I was also interested in native American Indians because we had several ancient native settlement sites in and around the foot of Rattlesnake Mountain between El Cajon & Santee where I grew up. When climbing and exploring on that mountain, I'd often ponder away at what life must have been like for those unknown Native families and how they must have survived. But the film, Island of the Blue Dolphins , changed all that for me. First, even though I was a child in elementary school, it angered me to come to the realization of truth that life for the Mission Indians was actually no picnic. To be honest, most of the world of mankind who have heard of the American Indian probably have in their heads the more romanticized version of Natives dressed in Plains Indian attire. They are probably only familiar with more written about culture of Indian Nations such as the Souix, Cheyene, Crow, Blackfoot, Comanche, Apache, Arapaho, Navajo, Hopi and so forth. Admittedly, we only have early historical paintings which reveal the early encoutered Native Californians as having a kind of primitive half naked appearance by comparison to the tribes of the other states. Early photos are not helpful as they show California Mission Indians already adapting to Euro-culture and dress. Even in the Spanish explorer, Juan Bautista de Anza & the Padre Pedro Font documented in their respective journals of the many smaller clans of tribal outcasts thay encountered and their pitiful condition. But the docu-drama I watched as a kid did a couple other things for me that I now admit looking back was extremely important in the way I view things at present. It made me more fascinated about life of the natives and how they lived off the land. It also made me hungry for more historical writings not only of this region of Southern California, but also expanding my horizons well beyond to other areas around the globe when it came to my developing interest in native plant communities by those early original world  explorers who first encountered them and how whole plant ecosystems must have worked and functioned prior to human disruption. Chris in his opening introduction on his Facebook page also wrote about how his research on the subject made him feel, which also triggered another memory of something similar I read in an article back in 2013 by a fellow named Red Haircrow and the German people's obsession with American Indians. First, here is what Chris wrote:
"It offers me solace because the descendants of those who suffered the unspeakable evils I fleetingly describe here, who knew this history all too well already and didn't need to sit down and research it, are still willing to work with non-Native people to set things right. Eager to work with them/us, even, provided we non-Native people do a little bit of elementary learning and display a little bit of elementary sensitivity."
Yup, most of the native peoples don't have to dig and scratch in various libraries for research to understand what they've known for decades about the plight of their ancestors. The gentleman to the right here is Red Haircrow. He is a writer, filmmaker, chef, counselor. BSc Psych, Grad Student Native Studies of Apache/Cherokee descent. He lives now in Berlin, Germany. I found some of his interesting articles in an online journal called, "Indian Country - Today Media Network." Take a look at the Meme photo with quote below. When I first read this, my first thought was, "This is like something Chris Clarke would coin." Notice the uncanny similarity of thought in both paragraphs from Chris Clarke and Red Haircrow. Hence the silly title I chose for my post:

"As a Native American in Germany, when I am asked honest questions, I give honest answers, and if I don’t know something, I direct the person toward a reliable source of information. When I am dismissed by hobbyists who think they know more about my people and culture than I do, I do not let them bother me. Instead, I try to educate those who are willing to listen and hope they will support causes that help improve the life and future of Native Americans"
(Author - Red Haircrow)
I'm not going to post any other links about Red Haircrow or links to other references which would detract from the message within Chris Clarke's article which I'll link below. There is so much more to say about the native descendants of the California Indians, but I'll let Chris' article say it. For me personally, my own family has a  personal connection to the Sycuan Kumeyaay Tribe east of El Cajon through my Sister and her daughter. While as Chris mentioned in his article, Gaming Casinos have financially benefitted some tribal nations, it has not always resulted in genuime happiness and contentment. This has a lot to do with not only the  general human imperfection common to all cultures, but also a result of the conquest of more technologically advanced foreign nation peoples imposing their will and aggression on indigenous peoples which took a heavy toll on their traditional family and cultural structure. This is also mirrored around the globe everywhere. From personal experience myself living in Anza California and associating with members of the Cahuilla Tribe up there, it was a challenge to get them back in the 1980s to rebuild the forested ecosystems which once existed on some parts of their Reservation. Even when I volunteered to purchase the Forest Service grown bareroot trees and teach them what I had successfully done with a native species of mycorrhizal fungi found in the foothills of Anza Valley which I had collected up there for years, long before such techniques were ever spoken about as they are today, they just had no interest. Mostly I was dealt with suspicion and mistrust. I didn't take it personally, but conversation always ended with "It's the White Man's fault and he should fix it." Back in many remote lesser known Indian Reservations there is a purvasive apathy, lack of purpose and hopelessness that has been around for generations through no fault of their own. But you'll also find this same negative effect in many of the world's inner cities as well. But every so often you will find many individuals who will recognize their hopeless situation and work hard to pull themselves up and out of that dark abyss. Keep in mind, not all tribal circumstances around North America are equal. Just like any European countries. But anyway, below here is Chris Clarke's informative article. Again if you wish any further references on these other subjects mentioned here, Google is your friend! 😑

A young Cahuilla woman in the early 20th Century | Photo: Edward S. Curtis 

Chris Clarke: "Untold History: The Survival of California's Indians"

Monday, November 14, 2016

Time Magazine: "The End is Near"

Well, we can only hope and pray this will come soon
Time Magazine

Another stressful and controversial year is almost finished here in 2016 as time pants on to the end. Incredible apathy pervades this world in general as various ruling political ideologies (& their most diehard promoters) continue to convince masses of people that only their side can bring about real change. Truth is, mankind in general over the centuries has been merely treated to the same old same old under a different recycled label for eye candy appeal. Nothing's really ever changed. From the time I grew up in the 1960s where radical college & university activism really got it's start, nothing has really improved. We are in a time of angry activism with that symbolic angry clenched fist thrust upward into the air.  Well known British author of Indian ancestry, Salman Rushdie, had one of the more accurate and interesting observations I've ever listened to as to why many of these activist movements (political, environmental, religious, etc) are so flawed in ever accomplishing their goals.

“We live in an age of identity politics in which people have been encouraged to define themselves by what makes them angry. You know, I mean, I would say that the more healthy definition of the self is to define it in terms of the things you value and care about and love, you know."     
"But now, we seem to be—or many of us—seem to be defining ourselves by what we hate. You know, and that rage, as you say, becomes a badge of identity—becomes a kind of selfhood." 
"Classically, we have defined ourselves by the things we love. By the place which is our home, by our family, by our friends. But in this age we're asked to define ourselves by hate. That what defines you is what pisses you off. And if nothing pisses you off, who are you?"
CNN Interview of Salman Rushdie - transcript
What an incredibly bold and astute observation of how the leadership of various so-called enlightened movements have mutated so low and justifying such a low road as being for the greater good. It's a sad fact that many political ideologies and environmental movements are also manipulating children for the very same reason. Between 1998 & 2001, I worked on various University and Community College campuses throughout northern and southern California for the financial aid industry.  Moving around I watched first hand how many environmental and political activist groups took advantage of student youth and inexperience which were fertile ground to indoctrinate and manipulate into supporting some imaginary utopian cause. Human beings while young are like potter's clay which is easily molded for a specific purpose by the potter. It should be a parent's responsibility to know and understand what is taking place in all schools so as to safeguard their children from predatory thought police. Later in life at adulthood such molding is almost impossible. So today's youth are generally the prime target. Young people do not have the common problems of family and financial responsibility obligations either. By nature they gravitate towards such things as civil disobedience and disrespect for authority. Most people often forget that many college aged students are still emotionally and mentally nothing more than children in adult bodies. Not all, but many. What I've noticed over some decades is that often times, these once young energized activists will at some point completely burn out as they further approach adulthood where the true realities of life set in when they go to find a job, get married and later have kids. There may be a few who will continue to follow the cause of an Activist movement, but quite often they only do so through an anonymous avatar profile within some popular social media site on the internet. Hence they become the new recruiters. Colleges and Universities can be compared to a sustainable agricultural enterprise where every year brings in a new crop of inexperienced young people. So these activist movements are kept sustainable by having a permanent presence on campuses where they acquire newer immature recruit prospects not fully aware of what they are getting themselves into. This happens irrespective of the type of cause or political affiliation of the organization involved in the harvesting work. In the end, nothing ever changes for the better. Since the enlightened age of the Counterculture protests of the 1960s, nothing has gotten better from either an ecological or environmental perspective where our natural world is on the brink of collapse with the global nations as a whole not really knowing the way out. 

Now that this USA Presidential Election is over and has anything changed for the better ? Apparently not if some leaders of the opposition have their way. We see the same old same old when it comes to partisan finger pointing and insults from both sides. Once again we see the College Students are being harvested for the newer activism movement against the new evil establishment. The Press themselves have recently been exposed as a major factor in this ongoing disunity. Other nations also, especially over here in Europe have been upset that the United States hasn't moved towards a more Socialist Utopia like themselves. Well, *cough-cough* not exactly, expecially with the major blunder decision making they've brought upon themselves from 2015 thru 2016. This failure of there being any viable political solution being realized was summed up by Margaret Thatcher, who gave a speech at the 40th Anniversary Session of UN General Assembly with the President of the United States, Ronald Reagan on October 24, 1985 where she put the blame for the failure of the United Nations squarely on the shoulders of all it's member Nations. 
"Secondly, when we ask about shortcomings we should start by looking at ourselves. The United Nations is only a mirror held up to our own uneven, untidy and divided world. If we do not like what we see there's no point in cursing the mirror, we had better start by reforming ourselves."
Source - Margaret Thatcher Foundation 
Unfortunately, the various activists from both sides have a bad habit of never looking into the mirror and admitting they also are equally part of the problem as those they hate. But I was pleasantly surprised to read one ABC News report from Los Angeles California where they attempted to explore the reaction of hispanics to the Donald Trump victory. As a general rule the media looks for  controversial outrage to stir up their ratings which are actractive to their advertisers. I don't think the comments ABC got were exactly what they expected or wanted. Fortunately for the average readers, they did go ahead and printed them anyway. Take this one below:
ABC NEWS - "Hispanic Community in Los Angeles Reacts to President-Elect Donald Trump"

As a Jehovah's Witness (Los testigos de Jejovah), 81-year-old Rudolph Anparano said he believes people should "respect superior authorities" when it comes to the president of the United States.   
"Nothing I hear today is any different than I heard in my youth," Anparano said.      
Anparano and his parents were born in the United States, but his grandparents are from Spain.       
People should be "respectful of humans in general," Anparano said.
(Source - ABC News - Los Angeles)
Mr Anparano's beliefs are one of neutrality. He has a true sincere belief in the Kingdom of God as yjr Rath's legitimate government and therefore takes no political stand in the politics of any nation. But he respects others right to choose. The other churches recite that Lord's Prayer from memory as a ritual of sort without really ever understanding it's true intent. If we take just the three topics of import in that prayer, you'll see these texts are in direct conflict with what most churches teach (Matthew 6:9-10 King James Version):
"Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven."
Personally I find the old archaic English a bit hard to follow, but here is looking up on google, here is how Mr Rudolph Anparano's New World Translation renders this same text in modern English:
"Our Father in the heavens, let your name be sanctified. Let your Kingdom (or government) come, let your will (of purpose) take place, as in heaven, also on earth."
Rudolph Anparano's belief is that only God can govern mankind properly, but he recognizes the legitimate right of the present world governments to exist without interference from Christians meddling in this world's politics. His lack of confidence in human rule are highlighted in other texts referenced in the bible:
"Man has dominated man to his injury."
(Ecclesiastes 8:9 New World Translation)
"I well know, O Jehovah, that to earthling man his way does not belong. It does not belong to man who is walking even to direct his step."
(Jeremiah 10:23 New World Translation)
In Mr Anparano's faith, he is taught that the trouble of human self-rule began back in the Garden of Eden with with the first human couple eating from the tree called, "The Tree of the knowledge of good and bad," which represented respect for the creator's authority as law giver. Their eating from it represented their rejection of the creator's authority and a revolutionary right to self-determination. It's incredibly interesting that most all the other churches reject this idea and give their full support to democratic self-rule as opposed to promoting God's Kingdom, which is the thing they've memorized in that "Lord's Prayer." A footnote on the scriptural text of Genesis 2:17 from the Catholic New Jerusalem Bible has this commentary on that text which states that Adam and Eve laid claim:
“to complete moral independence by which man refuses to recognise his status as a created being . . . The first sin was an attack on God’s sovereignty.”
And yet lo and behold most all churches miss this dramatic point. The biblical account in Daniel chapter 2 reveals the account of Babylonian King Nebuchadnezzar, who had a nightmare dream of an imense image with various body parts made of various metals. When Daniel was brought before this King to interpret his nightmare, he mentioned that the head of gold represented the Babylonia Empire, followed by Arms & breast of silver, loins of copper and finally feet of part iron and part molded clay. All representing world empires which would follow the fall of Babylon and have a profound influence on mankind and the direction self-rule would take them. The empire represented by the feet made of part strong iron and partly molded clay would be the last World Empire to dominate world politics before the end comes. This is also Mr Anparano's belief. You can read the description of what Daniel 2:41-41 says regarding this last mighty empire which symbolizes the duel world power of Great Britain and the United States of America. Notice how well this description illustrates today's political infrastructure of the USA & Britain. Here is the Prophet Daniel's interpretation to King Neduchadnezzar of it's meaning:
"And just as you saw the feet and the toes to be partly of clay of a potter and partly of iron, the kingdom will be divided, but some of the hardness of iron will be in it, just as you saw the iron mixed with soft clay. 42  And as the toes of the feet were partly of iron and partly of clay, so the kingdom will be partly strong and partly fragile.

Merely an example of division within every election

Wow, how spooky and uncanny is this animated map above that represents the election map folks ? An Empire mixed with the offspring of mankind ? Even other countries are experiencing an end to once homogenous culture which creates challenges to stability. I've previously written about this final experimental type of governance called Democracy which got it's birth in Greek history. It's often hailed as the perfect type of government mankind has ever invented. But just how perfect is it if the average citizen with all the same imperfect flaws common to all people elects as leader over themselves another human with the same identical failings ? The discription from Daniel chapter two reveals an empire with one part being of iron-like strong elements which want to hold onto power, but must also deal with the part described as partly molded clay which represent the common people who also want a voice in this self-rule government. Rather than the answer, democracy is also a hindrance to true peace and security. It will always be about 49% verses 51%, give or take a few percentage points. There will never ever be a true unanimous concensus. People, whose side loses an election are also at fault for the winner of the other side. Why ? Because they believe in democracy which states both sides accept the final results. But we all know that is not how it goes down. If one group is angry over the result, then it's revolution time and peace is just some mythical illusion. What both ideologies want is absolute power with their respective sides dominating over the other. So what do today's election results really mean for hispanic peoples ? Today many are pushing fear-mongering as an answer to their frstration. Somebody once described FEAR as False Evidence Appearing Real. Okay, that’s a nice acronym. Sort of catchy. Kind of a new trendy Meme to spread around the time wasting social media sites. But what about hispanics ? What can they do ?

They'll figure something out. They always do!

I've grown up and lived around the hispanic community most all of my life. Hispanics are some of the most resilient, resourceful and tough peoples I know. They are incredibly problem solving with McGuyver-like ingenuity and a love of family closeness that sadly most of the affluent regions of the USA have long lost. For decades in many Latin American countries to the south the hispanic culture have had to endure under harsh oppressive political regimes and economic corruption. So this isn't exactly like something they have never encountered before. But I really appreciate this Mr Rudolph Anparano's take on respect for authority no matter who is in power. The present hatred that is prevailing all across the United States is now the result of Adult Activist organizations recruiting mainly people with inexperience of youth to do the dirty ground work. this is creating a dangerous scenario if they are not careful. Everyone should take to heart the words expressed by Salman Rushdie, Margaret Thatcher and Rudolph Anparano. Neither side's version of ideology here is going to bring about true peace and security if indeed that is their ultimate goal as advertised. This world's direction is clearly on a wrong course and it's NOT just one side's fault as opposed to another. Both are running neck and neck in the whose got the moral high ground derby and no matter who claims to come off the winner, the common people on Earth will be the loser. Be extremely careful who you are putting your faith and trust in folks, because this is all about to hit the proverbial fan very soon now.

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Pumpkin Spice Latte ☆ パンプキンスパイスラテの作り方

There are a plethora of reasons I to want to forget this year 2016, now and way on into the future. It's tough to find a way to escape all the negative news media reports and general everyday grind of this system of things. However, I found one ever so pleasant means of escape. Okay it's only about a 7 minute video, but it was worth it. 

Image - Peace Cuisine (October 2015)
Okay, I don't really know what this is, but I want one. Especially with Fall/Winter coming. Oh, & the music is ever so soothing too!

Monday, September 26, 2016

Biotech Black Ops ???

"While people Farmers were sleeping, an enemy Biotech Black Ops came and planted weeds GMO Seed among the Wheat and went away."
Matthew 13:25 (altered for illustrative purposes)
Image from Pinterest.com
Uncanny similarity between a parable & 2013 Oregon GMO Wheat
image - dailymotion.com
Of course most people have heard of the parable of the "wheat and the weeds." An enemy of a farmer sneaks into a field under cover of darkness and sows a weed called Bearded Darnel among the newly planted wheat field. The plants look almost identical to the untrained eye, but only after the plant bears fruit do the differences become evident. Same is true of the infamous non-gmo and gmo wheat incident which took place back in 2013 in eastern Oregon which created such controversial stir and economic hardship for those farmers from USA wheat boycott. Many conspiracies theories became popular of Monsanto (whose seed was identified) had hired a black ops type of operation to contaminate the wheat supply which would have eventually made all wheat GMO. Stories even surfaced of Monsanto having bought the infamous Blackwater mercenary company. This would seem plausible given the total tonnage of monies dumped into legal teams, public relation and damage control websites, media outlets and PR Firms over the years. Frankly, if such an covert operational undertaking did take place (I have no idea the truth of this conspiracy), I highly doubt it would look like the photo image at the upper right here, because it would be more of a hired individual looking like a backpacker hiking through the countryside or some migrant looking farm hand with a small pouch of seeds causally sprinkling gmo seed here and there. Monsanto themselves were quick to blame some rogue GMO Activists for trying to give Monsanto a bad name and reputation in the GMO wheat seeding scandal. But seriously, does Monsanto really need outsiders to sully their reputation ? Eventually however, Monsanto settled the lawsuit case brought against them, but the mystery just won't go away. This GMO wheat was also found in a agricultural field of Montana State University back in 2014 and recently has now been reported in fields of the state of Washington this past July 2016. Coincidence ?

image - endoriot.com

Reuters: USDA confirms unapproved GMO wheat found in Washington state
For me, the incident back in Oregon 2013 when Monsanto set forth a conspiracy theory blaming ecology activists is highly unlikely. More than anything it was a smokescreen for deflecting attention away from themselves since it was their own seed. This is one of the most powerful multi-billion dollar corporations in existence. They have some of the highest tech security systems known. Does it seem reasonable that some long haired, sandal clad, bead toting eco-activists (typical description as painted by Corporate shills) could really breach the intense Monsanto security and maliciously spread seed just to give Monsanto a bad reputation ? Not likely, but then we'll really never know the truth here. In 2016 even the definition & traditionally known meaning of the word, "truth," is becoming a definition shell game. Many will dismiss this because well after all, it was only 22 or 23 plants found grouped together in one spot. Yes, but oddly enough, it was at the edge of the fields where it has the appearance of someone dumping a handful of seed (hence the plants all grouped together in the same location as opposed to being mixed within 1000s of other non-gmo seed in the mechanical planter) and quickly scurrying off before anyone notices. But how did the farmer make the discovery ? Let's go back to the other verses in that text of Matthew referenced here at the top of this post and compare:

26 When the wheat sprouted and formed heads, then the weeds also appeared.  27 “The owner’s servants came to him and said, ‘Sir, didn’t you sow good seed in your field? Where then did the weeds come from?’  28 “‘An enemy did this,’ he replied.  “The servants asked him, ‘Do you want us to go and pull them up?’  28 “‘No,’ he answered, ‘because while you are pulling the weeds, you may uproot the wheat with them. 30 Let both grow together until the harvest. At that time I will tell the harvesters: First collect the weeds and tie them in bundles to be burned; then gather the wheat and bring it into my barn.’”

Image - beforeitsnews.com

Of course the weeds in the parable were undetectable. Both the Bearded Darnel & Wheat and are in the grass family and in youth look identical. You need to wait until harvest when the fruit gives away their true identity. This brings to mind another text, Matthew 7:16, which says, "By their fruit you will recognize them. Do people pick grapes from thornbushes, or figs from thistles?" I've used this same observation when in the field (Bush) trying to identify various trees and shrubs. Of course with wheat and bearded darnel this would be easy, but not so with GMO Wheat and the non-GMO Wheat. They look identical from all outward appearances. The farmers in Oregon and Washington only found out they had GMOs when they used Roundup on the wheat as a desiccant which is a  practice to hurry up the harvest drying process in northern locations where the growing season is short and rains come early which damages the quality of the grain. The Roundup Ready wheat would still stand out as green and living in comparison to any dead dry non-gmo wheat. Rather than burning the wheat, these farmers turned them over to the USDA who did indeed confirm the Monsanto batch variety (MON 71700) was present. But again, what would be the point of deliberately planting GMO wheat under cover of darkness ? Infect and containate the entire wheat industry and GMO becomes normal and acceptable. No more years of time, waiting and testing. There are after all fortunes to be made and investors to answer to. Of course Roundup as a wheat pre-harvest desiccant in northern climates would seriously go out the window, so it would have been a dumb idea inserting it in such a northern locale. Apparently the black ops mission had poor not so well thought out planning. But acquiring another cereal grain monopoly no doubt was the goal. Again, with all the legalease and lobying, there really is no definitive way of proving this, but Monsanto did pay hefty fines without admitting any guilt. You know how it is, this goes on inside the corporate world all the time over and over.

image - prisonbooks.info

"Okay we didn't do anything, but we apologize"

Just so that everyone knows, the idea behind inserting resistent genes to Roundup in the first place was a weed herbicide strategy. Those greedy weeds outcompete wheat for nutirents, especially phosphorus. However, non-gmo wheat planted in the ground and inoculated with VAM mycorrhizal fungi have been found to outcompete weeds for phosphorus. How ? The fungi actually do this. The weeds are either not present and die or greatly reduced and stunted in growth. Mike Amaranthus of Mycorrhizal Applications Inc in Grant Pass, Oergon, said this was the feedback from his customers who were organic wheat growers. This was a major side effect and something they never anticipated when using his MycoApply for better drought resistence and nutrient uptake. Here's the full account of organic wheat growers who make a profit and therefore do not qualify under the USDA's government grain commodities welfare entitlement program.
Genetic Engineering: More ruthlessly & Ideologically driven than you can possibly fathom
Using Nature's Mycorrhizal Tool-Kit to compete with Weeds vrs killing them with Glyphosate
 Mycorrhizal Applications Inc 
"Golden Rice" - Because the Industrial Agricultural Complex cares about this world's poor children ?
Image - Wikipedia

To me this Golden Rice scheme in actual truth has been one of the most smokescreened business ventures for developing a product for the monopolizing of yet another grain commodity without jumping through the conventional hoops & hurdles of European and North American laws and regulations which could mean years. The justification is of course is that vitamin A deficiency is killing many in poorer nations, but especially children. In their worldview Golden Rice is the answer for poor nations like Philippines and Bangladesh. But their claims of Vitamin A potency and yields have thus far failed. Interestingly, the researchers the themselves have admitted the failure Genetically modified Golden Rice falls short on lifesaving promises & the fact that the study also found that GMO activists were not to blame for scientific challenges slowing it's introduction. Putting that aside, it should be noted that poor people are not livestock to be fed a cattle feed diet either. As human beings equal to those of European descent, these people are not sub-human as many of this world's intellectuals (even Nobel Laureates) would have you believe. Some  researchers have been infected with an ideology which all of us have seen on display in most of the world's college and high school Biology textbooks. Over at the pro-gmo trans-humanist eugenics website, Genetic Literacy Project, you can often read articles  calling for a kinder form of eugenics policy to lower populations in such countries. The large populations in poor countries are viewed as a drain on natural resources. Yet Biotech and Agro-Chemical proponents say they just want to feed the world. It would appear to be a sort of double standard which reveals the true reason they want GMO Rice developed for future global markets. The people (human beings) in poorer countries deserve a great variety in their diet which includes various sources of fresh fruits and vegetables for rich sources of Vitamin A like industrial nation peoples. Much like the illustration here above right. To repeat, this is more about a business model, than generosity towards the poor. That's not to say there may not be some involved in the program who are genuine, but this is how all types of businesses get things done in our world and it has been done this way for centuries. It's also things won't be getting any better in our future considering how many of the Biotechs and Agro-Chemical companies have morphed or mutated into bigger monstrosities recently. All the players involved here have huge issues historically when it comes to their historical performance regarding Bioethics.
Wall Street Journal: ChemChina-Syngenta $43 Billion Deal Approved by U.S. Security Panel
Bloomberg: Heroin, Nazis, and Agent Orange: Inside the $66 Billion Merger of the Year
 Aside from some of the infamous conduct from Bayer during World War II you may be aware of, here are a couple of gems you probably don't know about more recentlyL
CBS 60 Minutes: "Researcher Estimates 22,000 Lives Could Have Been Saved Had Trasylol Been Pulled Earlier"
New York Times: "2 Paths of Bayer Drug in 80's: Riskier One Steered Overseas"
Stuff like this folks is the tip of the proverbial iceberg. This is how our world's corporate entities work. My use of the biblical texts here was purely illustrative, not literal. But it is amazing how such common observations have been known and understood down through the centuries. I'll say it again, this year 2016 is the most strange weirdo years I have ever experienced in all my 60 years of life. How has this world become so dirty, ethically speaking ? Never has there been such a time where corruption within the world's Churches, Politics and Big Businesses come to be on such a grand bizarre scale. We are now living in the times of the new abnormal. I never use and refuse to use (which means accepting) the term "The New Normal." However, people can still make intelligent choices and yes, you do have the free will to do so when it comes to rejecting incompetent corrupt leadership irrespective of ideologically driven worldview. That brings us back to biomimicry.

Image - Mycologist Paul Stamets - bioluminescence

Biomimicry: Streamlining Innovation for Environmentally Sustainable Products

Saturday, September 10, 2016

Should Grizzly Bears be Reintroduced in California ?

A well intentioned Rewilding Movement motivated more by heart felt emotion than real world boots on the ground research based on logic and our present Climate Change reality
Photo: Craig Kohlruss

I've previously written about the disaster presently going on in California forests where millions upon millions of dead and dying conifers, oaks and other trees are the result of intense drought exacerbated by Climate Change.
Millions of dead/dying trees have nothing to do with Climate Change ???
But now there is word out that some ecology rewilding groups wish to reintroduce the Grizzly Bear back into the state of California again. The state once had a unique California Grizzly bear species, but humans forced it's extinction. I believe the last one was killed somewhere back in the 1920s. Here are some important pertinent quotes from the "Bozeman Daily Chronicle" on potential for rewilding efforts:

"The Center for Biological Diversity has collected some 20,000 signatures on an online petition urging the state Fish and Game Commission to consider studying the feasibility of reintroducing the grizzly, which is listed a federal threatened species."   
"The group also is doing social media ads for its campaign in preparation for presenting a formal petition to the commission in a few months."   
"Environmentalists call the messages part of a broader national campaign of “rewilding” areas to restore large carnivores such as bears, wolves, badgers and otters and protecting large connected habitats for them."   
"Large predators and large habitats, rewilding advocates say, are essential to keeping ecosystems healthy.
Okay, I get this. I totally understand the reasons and emotions behind the well intentioned idea. But careful forethought and planning need to be done before any rash decision making for reintroduction of the non-native variety of Grizzly Bear into California. I say 'non-native', because the actual unique native California Grizzly has been extinct for almost a century now. Any bears will have to be captured in Idaho, Montana or Wyoming. Just like plant systems, there is unique species specific importance for localized seed when you attempt replanting any disturbed area. It should be no different with wildlife. To their credit, the Center for Biodiversity called for a feasibility study. Frankly, it shouldn't actually take that much time and money to figure out whether or not this could succeed. Follow me below on this, but first, here is another online journal link on the subject from California.
Mercury News: Grizzly bears in California: Reintroduction push ignites strong emotions
What about the eco-green ecosystem reality on the ground in California ???

(Dan Honda, Bay Area News Group)
Take a quick close look at the two minute video above of the millions upon millions of dead and dying trees occuring in this Sierra Nevadas of California flyover. This is actually just one small speck when compared to the overall massive picture of dead and dying trees all across the west. Now look at the photo at right of a Grizzly Bear. There now, this is the ideal type of habitat a real Grizzly will be looking for, but there is not much of that left in California, The movement to reintroduce the Grizzly Bear back into it's once former range within California is doomed to failure before it starts. But how can that be possible ? It isn't so much that the negative would be that there are so many people (there is), but rather it's about their diet. What will they feed on ? Does the video above of the millions of dead and dying trees reveal a landscape of plenty ? Of course not. But for a moment, take the example of other call to re-engineer again a Mammoth from the DNA found in one of the many frozen carcasses over the years from Siberia.

Image - Matt Dunham/AP

Even if they could play Jurassic Park Geneticist by reconstructing the DNA of frozen Woolly Mammoths and combining it somehow with the DNA of a living Asian Elephant today, Sci-Fi World aside, if (and that's a big if) they could actually do this, what kind of world would they be bringing these creatures back to ? This planet is ruined and there is hardly enough sustainable wild habitat for even the large animals in Africa anymore. Most likely it would be an artificial Animal Park with the poor animals being fit with radio collars and wearing ear tags. Seriously though, is that what people really what ? Getting back to Grizzlies though. Once again I get all the emotion and heartfelt desires, but they have to be logical about this. These animals will go where there is food and that means people. Already there are conflicts in many places with black bears not being able to forage out in the wild and entering suburban areas. Then there are the issues of available waterways like streams and rivers. Grizzlies love both and need fishing, but that is also in doubt when it comes to  California. I never thought I would see this day when California would lose most of it's historical forests. 
Major Challenges with Food and Foreaging Natural Resources within California

CREDIT: Justin Sullivan/Getty

When you think of big brown bears like Grizzlies, what else does this bring to mind ? Salmon runs and fishing. At one time way back in history, the native California Grizzly Bears were King throughout California and probably down into Baja. Juan Bautista de Anza the Spanish Explorer in 1775 & 76 and Fray Pedro Font who accompanied him on the trek, both wrote about Bears (Los Osos) in their dariary journals when they passed through Southern California. Sightings were along water courses like the San Jacinto River in Hemet/San Jacinto Valley. Other sightings were after they had crossed the Santa Ana River and heading west through the I-10 corridor region of Ontario, Pomona & San Dimas. Many rivers flowed in those days from the canyons from the north in Angeles National Forests. The rivers ran full all year and contained large  populations of the native and now almost extinct Steelhead Trout or Salmon. Perfect Grizzly habitat in those days as even the forest tree lines were far lower in mountain elevation than they are today. Wetlands, marshes and large scale riparian woodlands were everywhere as well from the descriptive writings of Pedro Font and Juan Bautista de Anza where they often mentioned having to avoid them in many places which required long detours. The next recorded Grizzly sightings were towards Ventura/Santa Basbara, but especially further north in the river floodplain and delta region of the Santa Maria river south of San Luis Obispo where numerous bears gathered for fishing. 

Sadly, all these once pristine wild scenes are all barely a memory now. Most of those former rivers and streams are dry sandy rocky washes now. Dams were built way upstream and rainfall now days is almost nothing. Any periodic flooding comes from street runoff and other human industrial infrastructural development. Southern California will never ever again support any Grizzly population, not even a small one. The Sierras are also doubtful as millions upon million of various species of trees die off. Northern California would be the only choice, but it would still have to be large deep isolated wilderness and there is not much of that in a state of millions of humans, even as they move into more rural areas. Plus the Grizzlies would never be content to stay put there, especially with any food resources being almost nill. People are where the food is and that is where the failure of reintroduction would come in.
Grizzlies, Salmon & other wildlife require healthy viable green vegetative ecosystems
I've touched on dead and dying trees by the millions upon millions, but all success hinges on this. For all the wildlife concerned. It's not a matter of replanting. You need healthy normal climate dynamics to return for that and at present this seems unlikely. Much talk is being done to save the dead forest snags from big timber interests and other opposing scientists are in favour of logging anyway to fuel energy plants with wood to reduce coal. The argument being that these trees will burn and pump CO2 in to the atmosphere anyway if they stay put and are later consumed by wildfire. But will just leaving these trees really encourage the forest to return naturally on it's own ? I doubt it. There is a problem with regards where the viable seed will come from. Many of these trees were sick and thristy long before the bark beetles finished the job. When trees are stressed, they pump what little water resources there are into defensive survival mode as opposed to offensive seed production. So it's highly doubtful there was much of a viable wild seed bank out there in many areas where these trees died. If there were cones, then most of the cones would have opened up and released seed when they died and dried out. Any seedlings which may have resulted would most likely never had a chance in the present drought and if made if to sapling stage, then any resulting wildfire cooks that rehab. The much praised and celebrated fire ecology rebirth strategy becomes toast in such dead forest wildfire because there is no viable seed to kickstart the renewal process. Consider that these forests are dying on a massive wholesale scale. Replanting is also another option, but will that succeed ? Not without climate correction to bring back a normal rainfall pattern. This too seems unlikely. Also consider from what sources would the seed for seedlings come from. Most often today from out of state. Specific habitats require seed from those regions. Much failure has been experienced where region specific seed has not been used. This is even true of chaparral restoration projects.

Artemisia tridentata. Photo by Sue Weis, Inyo National Forest.

Many restoration projects for Silver Sagebrush habitat restoration have failed because of
well intentioned people have used seed from wrong species. Same goes for forest restoration.

A good example of the importance of site specific species to any  region is in several Silver Sagebrush restoration programs. While once I was researching about a native (Giant Palouse Earthworm) of eastern Washington which apparently thrives in native bunch graaslands and Silver Sagebrush Steppes, I stunled upon the reference to a region where replanted Silver Sagebrush had failed because it was not the specific type of Artemisis to the area. If I can find that reference I come back and post it here later. Much of this region has been converted to dryland farming into millions of acreage in wheat production. But a reference to habitat restoration of Silver Sagebrush Steppe in this region mentioned failure of Artemisia establishment because the wrong species was used. They all died. Many Silver Sagebrush restoration initiatives have ended in failure because several factors for regeneration have been ignored. And successional management models have identified these as underlying causes of failure as good site availability, species availability, and species performance. 

Image: Northwest Conifers

White Pine (Pinus strobus)
My point here is that a regions specific tree seed (Ponderosa, Fir, Oak etc) needs to be used to avoid failure in replanting California mountains. And it's a big if. But like I said, if climatic conditions are not restored soon, failure even with the correct seedlings will be meaningless. This is what will be the biggest challenge not only to Grizzly bear, but also Salmon and other wildlife. Remember, although people may view Grizzlies as vicious carnivores, Grizzly bears are actually omnivores, and their diet can vary widely. They may eat seeds, berries, roots, grasses, fungi, deer, elk, fish, dead animals and insects. All these important food resources also need a healthy viable forested ecosystem. Remember the issues with White Pine decline and Grizzly Bear survival ? So vital that massive decimation of White Pine by a blister rust pathogen has had major negative effect on Grizzlies.
See: (National Park Service - Yellowstone: How Important is Whitebark Pine to Grizzly Bears?)

Image - U.S. Forest Service

Beetle killed trees in Colorado's Never Summer Mountains

This photo above is from Colorado Rockies where millions of acreage of unhealthy forest trees are also under attack from Bark Beetles. Bears here along with other wildlife are struggling. Does anyone actually believe that California forests would be anymore inviting to a hungry Grizzly ? Frankly, forget the people for a moment. I think it's just unfair and unkind towards the non-native Grizzly Bears. 
 Update: September 12th, 2016
Hungry bears focus on gaining as much fat as possible before winter hibernation
"They become very food obsessed. It's really all around gaining as much fat as possible, right before the winter,"  said conservationist Kevin Van Tighem.
Wonder how desperately food obsessed native Rocky Mountain Grizzlies will be if introduced into non-native degraded habitats in the drought stressed extremes of California ???
CBC NEWS: Grizzly bears in Alberta family's yard were 'food obsessed,' expert says
Past Posts where I wrote about historical references to Grizzlies in California
The San Jacinto River Valley that Juan Bautista de Anza saw
San Jacinto River Wildlife Refuge & the wetlands potential beyond to Corona
Anza's Dairy & the Lessons Learned