From Mad Cow Disease to Agrochemicals: Time to Put Public Need Ahead of Private Greed

Colin Todhunter
The first part of this article documenting the development of BSE in Britain was written by Rosemary Mason and is taken from her new report ‘Why didn’t the UK media report the documentary on Mad Cow Disease?’ It is fully referenced and cites sources and evidence in support of her claims. Additional reporting for the second part of the article was provided by Colin Todhunter.

Mad cow disease is a fatal epidemic neurological syndrome created by the agricultural industry, farmers and food processors.

In 1987, an epidemic of a fatal neurological disease in cows suddenly appeared in Britain. Cows became uncoordinated, staggered around, collapsed and finally died. The disease was called Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy (BSE) because there were holes in the brain where prion protein cells became folded, had linked up and then split to cover the surface of the brain. There were more than 1,300 cases of BSE spread over 6,000 farms.

For at least 40 years, infected slaughterhouse carcasses had been rendered down and recycled into animal feed. Not wanting to waste anything, pressure cooking of the spinal cord and brain produced a sludge known as ‘mechanically-recovered meat’. The regulators allowed it to go into meat products. This processed meat and bone meal was turned into a coarse powder and was fed back to cows. Cows are herbivores and this way they were turned into cannibals.

By 1990, BSE had spread into 14 other species, including cats. Politicians, the food industry, media, the government, farmers and vets said BSE couldn’t jump species to affect humans and it was safe to eat beef. Advertisements were taken out in newspapers and politicians were shown eating steak tartare in the Houses of Parliament to boost the sales of beef. At an agricultural show, the Agriculture Minister John Gummer was seen offering a beef burger to his daughter.

In 1995, the first human under 40 contracted what became known as new variant Creutzfeldt-Jacob Disease (new vCJD, related to BSE and belonging to the same family of diseases). By March 1996, there were five cases and the government was forced to alter its advice. Kevin Maguire, a journalist, was lunching with someone in Westminster who said that scientists had discovered that ‘mad cow disease’ could jump species and had been found in humans.

Maguire said that it was a scandal in an effort to get every penny out of a carcass. His newspaper, ‘The  Mirror’, was the first to break the news to the public, saying that humans could catch mad cow disease from eating infected beef and that the government was about to do a U-turn by finally accepting that the brain wasting disease may have been passed to people. This U-turn by ministers – who for 10 years had insisted it was impossible – was a devastating indictment of the British government and probably one of the worst examples of government since the war.

During 1996, 10 more cases of new vCJD in people under 40 were diagnosed. All died within 13 months and there was no cure. In 2005, the authorities thought the disease was over, but in 2009, a case was discovered in a 30-year-old man. Another case appeared four years later. Today, people are living with uncertainty, not knowing if they are incubating new vCJD.

The parents of children who had died from new vCJD said “We trusted government advice.” Each Christmas one mother had sent an e-mail to those she thought responsible with a photograph of her daughter and said your actions have deprived me of my daughter. Another parent from Scotland who had lost his 30-year-old son to the disease had tattooed on his arm the name of his son followed by: ‘murdered by greed and corruption’.

In the documentary Mad Cow Disease: The Great British Beef Scandal, first broadcast on BBC 2 on 11 July 2019, Tim Lang, professor of food policy at City University London, said:

New Variant CJD is not a natural disease. It is an epidemic we have created. If the agricultural industry hadn’t decided to feed cattle with meat and bone meal, if the food processors hadn’t decided to scrape every last bit of flesh off the carcass, and if MAFF [govt ministry] hadn’t prioritised farming over food safety, all of the people who died would still be alive. This is the tragedy.”

The following is taken from a publication compiled by the European Environment Agency, Late lessons from early warnings (Patrick van Zwanenberg and Erik Millstone):

Many of the UK policy makers who were directly responsible for taking policy decisions on bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) prior to March 1996 claim that, at the time, their approach exemplified the application of an ultra-precautionary approach and of rigorous science-based policy-making. We argue that these claims are not convincing because government policies were not genuinely precautionary and did not properly take into account the implications of the available scientific evidence.

…It is, however, essential to appreciate that UK public policy making was handicapped by a fundamental tension. The department responsible for dealing with BSE has been the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food (MAFF), and it was expected simultaneously to promote the economic interests of farmers and the food industry whilst also protecting public health from food-borne hazards. The evidence cited here suggests that because MAFF was expected simultaneously to meet two contradictory objectives it failed to meet either.”

The UK introduced legislation banning the use of contaminated ruminant protein for use in ruminant feed in 1988. By then, a million cows had entered the food chain. At the height of the scandal, British beef had lost around 60% of sales. Prior to the ban, microbiologist Stephen Dealler challenged the government’s claim over safety and was moved from his research lab.

However, Britain continued to export meat and bone meal to Europe. The European Commission asked the UK to introduce an export ban on feedstuffs, but the UK refused to do so. It was not until 1996 that the EC banned these exports.

From mad cows to GMOs and pesticides

Where glyphosate (and other agrochemicals) and genetically modified organisms (GMOs) are concerned, we again see commercial interests being prioritised and the public interest sidelined. Monsanto’s glyphosate-based Roundup was originally sprayed on crops in 1980 and on grazing land in 1985 (recommended by Monsanto scientists). GMOs entered the commercial market in the US in the 1990s. As shown in the report mentioned in the introduction to this article, the authorities did not heed the advice of key scientists and went ahead regardless.

Readers are urged to consult the report as it documents the duplicity that underpins the agrochemical/GMO agritech sector and describes how science and regulatory processes have been corrupted. In Britain, the government is saying that GM crops and Roundup are safe and intends to introduce these crops after Brexit.

Of course, heavily compromised industry-funded scientists and other lobbyists say the science is decided on GM and that glyphosate is safe. They say anyone who rejects this is anti-science and doesn’t care about world hunger because we can only feed the world by rolling out more GM crops and more agrochemicals. But this is little more than propaganda and emotional blackmail, part of an industry strategy designed to tug at the heartstrings of public opinion and sway the policy agenda.

We need to turn to author Andre Leu who has outlined major deficiencies in pesticide safety protocols. He offers a more realistic appraisal:

… it is a gross misrepresentation to say that any of the current published toxicology studies can be used to say that any of the thousands of pesticide products used in the world do not cause cancer or other diseases… there is no evidence that pesticides are safe.”

Washington State University researchers recently found a variety of diseases and other health problems in the second- and third-generation offspring of rats exposed to glyphosate. In the first study of its kind, the researchers saw descendants of exposed rats developing prostate, kidney and ovarian diseases, obesity and birth abnormalities. The study’s authors say:

The ability of glyphosate and other environmental toxicants to impact our future generations needs to be considered and is potentially as important as the direct exposure toxicology done today for risk assessment.”

And where GMOs are concerned, they are little more than a flawed technological panacea that ignores the structural causes of malnutrition and hunger.

An increasing number of prominent reports and voices are now arguing that we do not need toxic chemicals to feed the world and that if we maintain our economic and agricultural course we are headed for disaster. FAO Director-General José Graziano da Silva recently called for healthier and more sustainable food systems and said agroecology can contribute to such a transformation.

Moreover, the new report from the UN  High Level Panel of Food Experts on Food Security and Nutrition – Agroecological and other innovative approaches for sustainable agriculture and food systems that enhance food security and nutrition – argues that food systems are at a crossroads and profound transformation is needed. Many high-profile reports and figures have been saying similar things for years.

It is therefore disconcerting that the British government seems oblivious to the need of the hour and remains intent on pursuing an obsolete neoliberal, water-polluting, soil degrading, health destroying, unsustainable model of food and agriculture at the behest of corporate interests.

Mad cow disease did not just suddenly appear from nowhere. It was created by humans, particularly the farming industry and food processors. The British government kept on maintaining that eating beef was perfectly safe. A scientist who spoke out was silenced. The interests of the beef industry were paramount.

Evidence suggests there could soon be a second wave of cases affecting humans. It will be among people with a genetic predisposition towards longer incubation periods than the first patients had. This genetic predisposition is shared by half the British population. Some 177 people (as of June 2014) have contracted and died of vCJD.

That number is dwarfed when it comes to the spiralling rates of disease and illness that we now see among the British population. This too hasn’t happened for no reason. We see clear trends between the rising use of agrochemicals (especially glyphosate) and rising rates of morbidity, while much of the media and policy makers remain silent on this connection.

From the ‘great British beef scandal’ of the 1980s to ongoing pesticide issue, the profit motives of rich corporations continue to trump the public interest.


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Jul 20, 2019 1:28 AM

“Monsanto’s glyphosate-based Roundup was originally sprayed on crops in 1980 and on grazing land in 1985″

Originally, one can say, 20 million gallons of Roundup close cousin ‘Agent Orange’ was dumped/sprayed over Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos from 1961 to 1971.

Roundup close cousin ‘Agent Orange’ was designed –in addition to spreading democracy– to cause permanent damage and destruction to the natural world. [how nice!].

Jul 20, 2019 2:14 AM
Reply to  Neo

Oh gosh, I just came across this, look what these companies, like
Monsanto and Dow Chemical, do for profit (and spreading democracy):

– Americans went to Vietnam to douse roads, rivers, canals, rice paddies and farmland with powerful mixtures of herbicides. During this process, crops and water sources used by the non-combatant native population of South Vietnam were also hit

– Americans caused massive environmental [said to be permanent] devastation of the U.S. defoliation program in Vietnam

– Some 400,000 people were killed or maimed as a result of exposure to American herbicides like Agent Orange

– Half a million children have been born with serious birth defects, while as many 2 million people are suffering from cancer or other illness caused by Monsanto Agent Orange
<a href=""Monsanto’s glyphosate-based Roundup was originally sprayed on crops in 1980 and on grazing land in 1985″ Originally, one can say, 20 million gallons of Roundup close cousin Monsanto’s ‘Agent Orange’ was dumped/sprayed over Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos from 1961 to 1971. Roundup close cousin ‘Agent Orange’ was designed –in addition to spreading democracy– to cause permanent damage and destruction to the natural world. [how nice!].


Jul 22, 2019 8:23 PM
Reply to  Neo

Also lets not forget the depleted uranium used in bombing Iraq , said to last hundreds of thousands of years before complete neutralization.Birth defects in Iraq is said to be through the roof.But Madeline Albright says it was all worth it.

Jul 19, 2019 7:19 PM

It wasn’t just ground up animal carcases that were fed to herbivores like cows.
The poor critters were actually made to eat their own excrement.
Bon appetit.
Then people were surprised this caused disease problems.
Whether this sort of thing is still going on is anybody’s guess.

Jul 19, 2019 5:46 PM

They know their own:

The lobbyists for the avaricious, sprawling wickedness which we call “business” today know the government ministers who can be bribed;

the government ministers know which businesses are willing to support their Establishment agenda;

both the government ministers and the CEOs have offspring whom they wish to succeed them when they retire;

the MSM journalists know where to turn to receive acknowledgement and awards for service to the above;

official scrutiny, like that of Hans Blix, who found no WMD in Iraq before Chush and Beney decided to go there and murder people anyway, is also subject to all of the above;

shareholders know that they can continute to demand their regular dividends even if they invested in the certainty that the Earth is flat, and they know which brokers will let them get away with it and even encourage them.

Therefore, nobody who is not closely associated with any of the corruption I have listed here has the remotest chance of getting the general public’s ear, because the people we are talking about here also know who is NOT their own.
If anybody still remembers anything from the Book of Revelation in the Bible, the “Mark of the Beast”, which was prophesied a very long time ago, has arrived, thank you very much.

To know anything at all today, you have to dig, but that fact has been hidden from the general public, so it doesn’t dig, so it naturally doesn’t know anything. The future of mankind’s intelligence obviously does not lie there.
If it lies anywhere, it is in sites like this, where the lively exchange of ideas based on actual perception, instead of fantasy, is bound to spread to some extent, and others will build upon that.

Keep writing, my friends, and, where possible, keep talking.

Jul 19, 2019 4:01 PM

The obvious ‘elephant in the living room’ is that we all reside in a neoliberal capitalist paradise that has literally enshrined the very worst human traits imaginable, those of the psychopath, literally as the basis of our freaking societal – ‘value-system.’ “Greed is good?” Really? Sane regulation of industry is literally impossible within our current insane myth system. The very notion of such is simply “white noise” relegated to the background.

The underlying mythology of our current insane economic model posits the notion that individual personal greed somehow miraculously “serves us all” no matter how obviously destructive, and that the mysterious “invisible hand” of the Market” is “raising all boats” even while it quite obviously keeps piling obscene amounts of money into the rather large yachts of of the world’s billionaires, and meanwhile the literal “habitability of planet earth” is considered simply an “externality” and therefore is of no concern to economists, business leaders and the oligarchy they serve. A living healthy environment simply has no place, no standing, no real “value” within our insane psychopathic mythology.

This is a ‘system’ that would and will rely on it’s “anything to make a buck” mythology to maintain itself to the bitter end. The notion that we can “save capitalism” AND “save the planet” is quite seriously flawed. We’re going to have to choose. Capitalism’s – “miracle of the market” – will simply turn planetary destruction into the “next big money making opportunity,” and never miss a beat – if we allow it to.

In my less optimistic moments I envision a future in which we are all “individual entrepreneurs” roaming about in our post-apocalyptic world – all in zombie-like fashion surviving by delivering pizzas to each other, and then eventually being forced into selling a kidney just to put food on the table and keep a roof over our heads. Sadly, as long as cheap electronic devices and distractions remain available, I dare say half the population here in the States wouldn’t even notice.

Jul 19, 2019 8:27 PM
Reply to  Gary

It is not a “mythology” Gary, it is a logic. A logic inherent in the language. If we can discern the difference, we are already free of the systemic ‘mytho-logic’.

It is beyond the realm of comment: but language is not neutral. Instead of the neutral representation of truth-values that are compatible with the real world …language has become a socio-political construct of power over. Language has become an ontology of identity (Being) and hierarchy (Being has dominion over being). Skipping a 5,000 word thesis: Being – individuation, individuality, identity – is only one possible logic function of language. One that has been inculcated as the ‘only’ for the purposes of power over. Language is a politically and socio-culturally constructed hierarchy of power. The individuated identity is the basis of the economism, scientism, and psychologism of the Enlightenment. One that is an entirely false socio-political construct.

So long as we accept the Correspondence Theory of Truth: that language literally corresponds to the truth-values of the worldview …and unconsciously accept that Being and language are literally, substantially, and concretely ‘real’ – we are treated as the infantalised wards of power over. And as you made clear; neoliberal nihilism is everything we are not.

About 150 years ago; people like Bergson, James, Dewey, Brantano, Husserl, C S Pierce, de Saussure, and A N Whitehead began to realise that the logic of fixed identity – the Western obsession with Being and ontology – was not the only way of interpreting reality. Language had become biased, ethnocentric (racist, supremacist), and essentially violently dominative. Each in their own little way: they began to favour process, change, fluidity, and connectedness over fixed identity; permanence; isolation (individuation); and separation. (Or more specifically: temporalisation over spatialisation.)

I don’t want to put anyone off, but …there is more than one way of conceptualising reality. Power favours an ontology of Being: and imposes it on us via socio- and psycho-political means. Economically, scientifically, and psychologically we are forced to conform to a redundant philosophical tradition …the ‘ontotheological’ model of man (the absolutisation of Being – and it is patriarchate and male dominant) …epitomised as a marketised, commoditised, self-maximising, competitive, and aggressively dominant individualised entity …one that is becoming increasingly narcissistic, hedonistic, and psychopathic. Not someone anyone wants to be: but to “get ahead”; to “make it”; to “get to the top”; to “get to where I want to be” …that is the systemic psychological profiling one must adapt and conform to. Which is the institutionalised ‘neuro-neoliberal nihilism’ of which you speak. Which is the ultimate expression of the ontology of identity encoded in the language.

In a process ontology – were one to fully develop and supersede ontological Being – there is no hierarchy or privileged status …no dominance over. Everything is of equal necessity and status. There is no value ontology of (onto-axiological) commodification: everything is of equal worth to the processes and sub-processes that create life. Value can follow McMurtry’s axioms of ‘life-blind’ (current value system); and ‘life-coherent’ (potential process value system). These are just sample entailments of subtle shifts that become possible with a shift in the logic of language. From ‘ego-logic’ (Being) to ‘eco-logic’ (process).

A whole new humanist and cooperative set of policy and polity proposals become normative of a new conception of the logic function of language. A whole new morality and ethics of Universal Humanism result from the sublation and supervention of the evolutionary redundant fixed and singular ontology of identity and Being. One in which we will not lose our identity (the collectivisation of Being is fascism) …but gain it. We are unique and individual: just not separationally and atomistically so. Being becomes Inter-Being in a process ontology. One that is co-equal, cooperative, inter-dependent, and co-evolutionary with everything else. No domination and dominion over: only equality and egality within.

Jul 20, 2019 2:26 PM
Reply to  BigB

Or, to paraphrase the great Native American AIM activist and artist John Trudell, “we are all made from the metals, minerals, liquids that make up mother earth,” we literally “are” another form of mother earth, we are all connected, and everything is connected.” 🙂

Fair dinkum
Fair dinkum
Jul 19, 2019 2:24 PM

Just like the priests of religion, the priests of science are dogmatic, deranged and dangerous,

Jul 19, 2019 6:10 PM
Reply to  Fair dinkum

Very true.
A related factor is that the actual truth behind which both groups build their power careers remains hidden.

Question This
Question This
Jul 20, 2019 6:35 PM
Reply to  Fair dinkum

It’s vitally important to distinguish the difference between ‘pure’ (biology, chemistry & physics) science & neo-liberal applied science.

The first provides us truth, the second a tool to advance humanities interests. The latter increasingly being hijacked & corrupted by the reigning neo-liberal regime who use it to advance their ideologies, often with no actual science involved whatsoever.

Jul 19, 2019 12:43 PM


From the commercialised poisons
Sugar, Pain killers, Alcohol, Nicotine, Gambling, … to personal Gluttony, Exercise, Sex, Violence… to cultural Shopping, Entertainment, Wealth…Religion.

All have a commonality of human physiological response – a feeling of ‘happiness’ or something like that.

We don’t know everything, we know more as time passes.

Decades and Centuries pass as the certitudes of the day are replaced by discovery. It has always been so.

But we are hamstrung by our dextrousness, being smarter than our understanding. We take the discoveries and turn them into harm inducing tools, weapons, machines, bad foods, poisons – destroying species – Dodo’s, Whales, Wildlife, Habitat … as if the planet belongs to no other life than humans, and no other humans than the strongest.

A self destructive belief in a hierarchy of life.

We are barely realising how it really is a ‘small world’, a planet unlike any other nearby. Yes, there are plenty of resources in near space to ‘harvest’ without destroying the Earth – probably using robotic technology – and we inevitably will. But we can’t ‘live’ anywhere else as we can on this planet.

We really need to look after it and ALL life on it. We can.

Being rich and isolated won’t save the few. A culling of poorer humans would not save them. As a reduction in the gene pool has never been a good idea across the ages for the future generations, whose progeny therefore become vulnerable.

The Blair government oversaw mass culling too. His ministers are not immune from the same hypocrisy and greed in the service of corporations and the aristo classes.

The bullshit green new deal is just another monetising of nature. The controlled ‘rebellion’ is just another ‘mechanical recovery’ of human concern and creation of more unnatural ‘cannibalism’ of free thought.

Addiction – death is the only current cure so far – we urgently need new ‘discovery’ to change the current certitudes.

Henry Wilson
Henry Wilson
Jul 19, 2019 12:31 PM

The farmers were not to blame for B S E it was the government & animal compound food manufacturers who were including meat & bone meal & even recycled protein extracted from poultry manure
this rubbish was used especially in rations for younger animals
Both my brother & me are dairy farmers my brother never feed any of these rations & never had a case
i used them regularly & had several cases which were very distressing
The government & the veterinary profession had been operating an testing & slaughter programme for a long number of years & cases were in rapid decline when the Major government & Gummer panicked
resulting in a collapse of the beef market & the removal of all cattle from the food chain over 36 months
Most farmers believed it was flawed science in the first place that allowed the rendering of carcasses at a lower temperature in the first place which allowed the prions to survive
prevalent in the farming community was this was linked to the flix bough disaster on humber side when an I C I nylon plant exploded
Meat & Bone meal had a long history of being included in animal feed but not for cattle & sheep successfully for probably a 100 years
the link to scrapie in sheep is unproven at one stage the government was threatening to cull the entire national flock this threat quietly dissipated
this disease has vanished totally from the national flock everyone used to get the occasional case but i have never heard of one in the last 10 years
Farmers were made compulsory treat cattle with organofosforos compounds ( the original mustard gas of world war one ) for warble fly an insect which lays its eggs under the back skin of cattle & emerges as a grub in the spring damaging the hide in the process this again appears to have vanished
Sheep had to be dipped compulsory in a product containing the same products ( now withdrawn )
Farmers suffered debilitating illnesses from this process ( several attempts to claim compensation from the government were largely unsuccessful as this would of cost the government billions look up a Brenda Sutcliffe on the internet for confirmation
As far as the attack on pesticides Agriland U K website author Rachel Martin is claiming hat an average family food bill will increase by £750 pounds if pesticides are banned

in it together
in it together
Jul 19, 2019 10:44 AM

“Another parent from Scotland who had lost his 30-year-old son to the disease had tattooed on his arm the name of his son followed by: ‘murdered by greed and corruption’.”

The mistake here is not that the 30 y.o son was murdered. The mistake is he was murdered quickly (within a year or so).

The rule of growth disruptive chemicals dictates that people die [get murdered] slowly after spending enormous amounts of money on health care including expenses to manage side effects of medications. Dying withing a year or so wouldn’t be the standard target. But that could have been done for testing purposes; how to achieve quicker results.

Jul 19, 2019 9:53 AM

Science has made a monumental blunder. Mad cow disease bovine spongiform encephalopathy, or BSE is not an infection spread by a pathogen, that is, a virus or a bacteria. It is a naturally occurring degenerative disease a disease of old age that is accelerated by toxic poisoning.

It all began with the sheep disease scrapie, which has similar symptoms to mad cow disease. Sheep staggered around and appeared to go crazy. But it was found that scrapie was not transmitted to other animals, and it was not thought to pose any threat to humans.

The most likely cause of scrapie was massive chemical poisoning. Sheep are regularly dipped in chemical baths to kill off parasites. Their heads are invariably thrust under the surface and they often swallow some of the toxic dip.

For decades, sheep meat has been used to make cattle feed, with no ill effect. Problems only began in 1981 with changes in the meat rendering industry. A non solvent process was introduced. Previously, fat soluble insecticides were literally dry cleaned out of the sheep meat. The same solvents used in dry cleaning trichoroethylene and perchloroethylene dissolved these harmful chemical toxins out of the food chain.

Unfortunately this change to the non solvent process followed the warble fly irradication campaign which lasted from 1978 to 1981. All sheep were compulsory dipped in an attempt to irradicate the parasite. This left additional neurotoxins in the fatty tissues, which the non solvent rendering process did not adequately remove. Resulting toxin levels rose from around 5 per cent to some 7 to 14 per cent (Veterinary Record, March 2, 1991: 199-203). These toxins readily cross the blood brain barrier (New Scientist, November 24, 1990: 53), causing spongiform diseases.

Indeed, Dr Gerald Wells, head of neuropathology at the Central Veterinary Laboratory in Weybridge, Surrey, told the BSE Enquiry in June: “The spongiform changes detected in the brains of cows were not in themselves conclusive and could have arisen from a variety of causes, including the ingestion of toxic substances.” (Times, June 6, 1998)

The epidemic was further exacerbated by the fact that cow meat was also being rendered to make cattle feed. This enforced cannibalism essentially doubled up the toxic effect.

We have also discovered that BSE was not a new disease in cattle. In 1990, when we interviewed farmers in Norfolk about BSE, they said occasionally they had similar symptoms in older cows that had what they called the “jitters” or “jiggers”. We believe that BSE is simply a disease of older cattle whose degenerative processes have been accelerated by poisoning so that it now affects cattle in their prime.
Full article at:

The flagging of fear-contagion as a vector of infection is to hide or mask toxicity and (self) destruction to ‘diseases’ as an Evil and Enemy or Threat – ‘Out There’ – as opposed to a result of our own thought and deed. Such an ‘Evil’ is always seeking to strike or violate our lives and must therefore be defended against, attacked and denied – all at the cost of sacrifice of truth and freedom and for the protection of a toxic and insane racket.

I point to core archetypal patterns that underlie or predicate the human psyche.
A hateful, insane or sinful and destructive SELF cannot be ‘escaped’ EXCEPT by its own dissociation of deceits and assertions, given power for the mitigation or delay and denial of an intolerable pain of loss.

A private agenda given power and allegiance as SELF or REALITY – operates the denial, distortion and sacrifice of living truth. NOT that Truth is edited by delusion, but our capacity to recognise and align in truth is lost to the wish to make it fit or serve our ‘survival’ in terms and demands of private agenda.

It is not that we cannot and do not have unique expressions of ability and experience relative to our own creative choices – but that guilt and fear operate to deny and subvert or substitute for a genuine relational willingness. The mapping out of our lives, relations and world in terms of private ‘getting’ is a miscreative development and logical expression of a sense of identity in LACK that is the nature of Communication breakdown. ‘Getting’ as an expression of lack (of worth, love, power or peace) is an addictive and hollowing corruption of our true nature as giving and receiving BOTH and in truth – as one.

In a sense the ‘evil’ is not OUT THERE so much as projected and protected as external displacement for what might be called evil thoughts but because ‘evil’ is seen as Power and Existence in its OWN right, I prefer to use the underlying idea of deceits or false thinking – including wishful thinking of a self-inflation that then delivers us unto a world in which “Everything is BACKWARDS; everything is upside down! Doctors destroy health, Lawyers destroy justice, Universities destroy knowledge, Governments destroy freedom, Major media destroys information, And religions destroy spirituality”. (Michael Ellner).

Note that the undoing of the ‘externality’ of our own self-protective gestures of illusion and deceit must wake the willingness of a true self-responsibility for our consciousness as the result of our with-ness and worth-ship. What we choose to associate with, and thus give value to, sets the measure of our giving and receiving. The need to look on the evils of the day thereof is within the desire and willingness to release ourselves from subjection and entanglements arising from denials that GIVE power away to fear rather than align in the recognition and resonance of the true. They wont seem to give power away while they are believed to work for the purpose given them.

The Greek pharmakoi, singular pharmakos, refers to victims who were ritually beaten, driven out of cities, and killed, for example, by being forced over the edge of a precipice. The word pharmakos, designating a person who is selected as a ritual victim, is related to pharmakon, which means both “remedy” and “poison,” depending on the context. In the story of the horrible miracle of Apollonius, the beggar is a pharmakos, a kind of ritual victim. Apollonius points to him as the demon causing the plague (he is the source of pollution or poison), but his lynching restores the well being of Ephesus (he becomes the remedy for the crisis). — Trans.”
~ René Girard, I See Satan Fall Like Lightning

Jul 19, 2019 9:17 AM

We see clear trends between the rising use of agrochemicals (especially glyphosate) and rising rates of morbidity, while much of the media and policy makers remain silent on this connection.

The general public is very aware that more people are getting cancer, it used to be 1 in 4, now it’s 1 in 2.
We’re either more genetically at risk or it’s environmental. Only scientists can tell us what is causing the rise.
We need the hard evidence now. We all know the Tories will want to help their farmer friends as much as possible when they lose their subsidies for doing nothing post Brexit.
People are very worried about cancer risks, they could cause any government to change policy if they were given clear unambiguous evidence that our food is killing us.

Jul 19, 2019 10:54 AM
Reply to  lundiel

“Only scientists can tell us what is causing the rise.”

[Neo-]Scientists are now being programmed to tell you: “It is your fault that you got a terminal disease; look, your neighbour is fine and most people are OK .. So, it’s your gene. Bad Luck!”

These are the new It’s-Your-Genes Scientists!

Bought Journalism is fait-accompli (any doubt??!) … Now welcome ‘Bought Scientists’!

Jul 20, 2019 10:41 AM
Reply to  lundiel

“We’re either more genetically at risk or it’s environmental.”

Binary hell.
No, sorry, I’ll read that again.
“Hell! Binary!”

Jul 19, 2019 6:13 AM

Ever since I learned of the kuru disease in a biology 101 class at Kent Uni a coupla lifetimes ago, I have believed that mammals evolved an inbuilt mechanism to prevent cannibalism. One that causes consumption of the prions of an animal’s own species to become corrupted, eventually resulting in death.

I have absolutely no evidence to support that theory other than the circumstantial evidence that Kuru was transmitted when clan members ate part of the brains of a family member during their funeral rites (and not as we were taught in the good old days of whitefella exceptionalism ,from ‘head hunting’).

As we read in the excellent article above above, vCJD/BSE is also ‘transmitted’ by cattle eating parts of the nervous system of their own species. That thanks to modern agriculture’s quite delightful decision to not just turn herbivores into carnivores but to also make them unwitting cannibals.

Transmitted from where? – if BSE can only be spread by cows eating other cows how did the first one catch the disease – the contention makes no sense, however the notion of species protection by destroying animals who take to feeding off their own species doesn’t just answer the question of where the tendency to distort prions originated, it also has some of that elegance which evolution through ‘survival of the fittest’ is redolent.

Sheep scrapie doesn’t quite fit the pattern. Firstly the disease has been known since 1732 when it is unlikely that either feedlots (the miserable prisons where animals are warehoused and fattened up as cheaply as possible until they are ready to be tortured & killed) or the means to render a beast down to the point that extraction of every last skerrick of animal matter turned a quid existed.

Secondly because scrapie isn’t transmissible just through consumption of pieces of a sheep or goat’s central nervous system, consuming any part of a beast’s lymphatic system will also transmit the disease, scrapie whose systems are almost identical to BSE may be an unrelated condition. Or not.

Even so, as an unreconstructed omnivore I still eat beef in Aotearoa, but refuse mutton. There have been zero instances of BSE here.

Sheep flesh doesn’t just taste revolting, the animals have been deliberately cross-bred into cretins, worst of all even though there have been zero known instances of sheep scrapie in Aotearoa since 1954: “Various studies have indicated prions (PrPSC) that infect sheep and goats with the fatal transmissible encephalopathy known as scrapie, are able to persist in soil for years without losing their pathogenic activity. Dissemination of prions into the environment can occur from several sources: mainly, infectious placenta or amniotic fluid of sheep and possibly environmental contamination by saliva or excrement. “.

Yep, ‘the authorities’ do claim scrapie cannot jump species across to humans why would anyone believe them?
Those of us who live in nations which “grew off the sheep’s back” know only too well that in a choice between the priorities of the agricultural industries and those of the human population, the humans always cop the rough end of the pineapple, regardless of whichever mob of liars and crooks is clutching the brass ring at the time the call was made.

As for Roundup, what can you say apart from the bleeding obvious, what ninny would imagine that any chemical designed to do maximum harm to microscopic life forms would have no effect on other larger life forms? Life is life, afaik cellular structures are pretty similar in all forms, so imagining some deliberately designed and constructed super toxic chemical is going to confine its lethality to the narrow range a chemist desires is stupidity akin to believing a ham sandwich contains the mother of god.

Jul 19, 2019 4:46 AM

Oe of the biggest false statements made today is there is not enough food to feed the population and the only way to do it is to allow agriculture to be even more industrial than it is now. The problem of food supply is distribution to where it is needed at a reasonable price. Everywhere in the West we see fully a 3rd of what is produced thrown at landfills yet other areas of the planet struggle. Never let it be said the desire for profit got in the way of a healthy humankind – LOL.

Jul 19, 2019 10:36 AM
Reply to  Neil

The lack-based drive for ‘power’ of possession and control operates and embodies the scarcity principle as its raison d’être. Thus the weaponising and marketising of Everything – including of course the framing of the thought by which we give and receive meaning.
The idea of ‘rogue thought’ – as a power in and of itself able to take over, or separate from its Nature and usurp its own Mind, is the idea of levels or compartments of Mind – such that conflicted thought can be ‘played or acted out’ or indeed rendered ‘unconscious’ to a surface ‘level’ of attention.
The idea of Wholeness in all its Parts – or the One in the Many and the Many in One – is not recognisable to our physical framework or ‘level’ of consciousness, while that is active as a filter and distortion of limitation and lack.
Everything has all the meaning we give it, and according to the measure of our giving, we receive. The idea of ‘giving to get’ or ‘giving to get rid of’ – is the feeding of error that has become a blind habit of dispossession. In this sense we are believing or eating our own toxic thought under the illusion that we have got rid of it onto ‘others and world’. One could call this illusion an ‘alien agenda’ because it is alien to our true thought, and does alienate or make us strangers to ourselves – and each other – and to our world.
Recognising the error allows recognition of our own correspondence or entanglement which of course may be greatly disturbing to what had passed of as a relatively stable sense of possession and control – but this is the ‘territory’ in which a deeper self-honesty can move and find re-cognition simply though abiding in active willingness despite ‘temptation’ to re-establish a private sense of possession and control. Scarcity has an underlying lack of connection, support and guidance. The investment in fear generates the ‘rogue thinking’ that sees only as a denied and hidden fear dictates. Look at the thinking and notice its operation and let this reveal underlying scripts of core beliefs and self-definitions.
Invested identity is more of a collapse into what thought makes real to the thinker, than an extension of that which identifies truly. One generates conflict, limitation and lack, the other releases the mis-take for a fresh take as an integrative willingness. One sets its fear in the past and sacrifices its present for a future that can never BUT re-enact its past a, and the other is yielding to a current and felt presence in and of which the mind is renewed as an aligned expression of wholeness in the script or world of an unfolding journey of experience or meaning. The one seeks ‘sustainability’ and sells sacrifice as salvation while the other aligns to a true Sustenance or direct connection – without FIRST having to change anything.
The Call to joy or wholeness of being is prior to the machinations of ‘thinking’ that runs a substitution of invalidation and inhibition to a fear of embracing and embodying Life – and this is the ‘possession and control’ that needs reintegrating to an underlying harmony that cannot be taught or packaged in the framework of dead thinking given life.

Jul 19, 2019 10:48 AM
Reply to  Neil

Another key point is that we are told that organic, agroecological, and permaculture food production has a significantly lower yield than ‘Green Revolutionary’ industrialised food production …based on the consumption of oil. And so we sit at the end of needlessly long global value chains of ‘just-in-time’ food production and distribution. Which is fine, all the time the Israelu avocados and Kenyan strawberries turn up in time for Christmas.

But we are approaching the day when they won’t. No one knows when that day will be. And no one has prepared. This has nothing to do with the intentional and induced crisis known as ‘Brexit’.

I have long advocated for food (and energy) sovereignty and justice in distribution. And if it is true that organic yields are 20-25% lower (the persistent propagandic claim; which is by no means certainly true) …and we need more land – then we will just have to reverse primitive accumulation and put the land back into shared community and common custody. Why should the ruling aristocracy get huge subsidised wealth and essentially free money (under the former Common Agricultural Policy) for leaving the land fallow? We need that land as a sovereign and survival existential necessity.

Politics has become boringly deferential; all that doffing the cap for centuries to the rich and powerful has got us precisely nowhere. Honesty would recognise that it is far worse than that. Intentional obedience has got us to the precipice of collapse. That is for those that are not bent over from the waist: who have become intoxicated by the intestinal gas of their own undigestable opinions …whilst waiting to be rudely rogered from behind by the coming ruling class fascism.

To those who can see what is happening: relocalising food and energy production – and the distributive justice that will facilitate this – must be at the top of any radical political agenda. In a changing and permanently crisis ridden world – we simply cannot rely on 40-60% (depending on commodity) of our food turning up ‘just-in-time’ forever. If it doesn’t, for whatever reason, I have read anecdotally that we are just nine meals from hunger at any given time.

The current order is defunct and failing us at every turn. Blind obedience to its failures can only become our failure of imagination. Capitalism is dead: though it may carry on chainstoking for decades …it also may collapse tomorrow. If we do not start to consider a humanistic successor and alternative, rooted in localism, commoning, and community cooperation …then capitalism in crisis will become fascism. The ruling aristocracy who we doff and scrape and serve on bended knee are no friends to us. Nor are their political institutions and architecture of dominance and rule. Legitimating proto-fascism won’t prevent fascism …merely endorse its course – which is set from the outset by the very DNA of primitive capital accumulation.

The land has been enclosed by extended ownership and private property rights for over two hundred years. It’s time to give it back: and not to extend private property rights further to internalise all of nature. Enough is enough.

Jul 20, 2019 10:55 AM
Reply to  BigB

“Capitalism is dead: though it may carry on chainstoking for decades …”


Jul 20, 2019 11:11 AM
Reply to  Robbobbobin

More exactly, Cheyne-Stokeing.
Most exactly, Cheyne-Stokesing.
Two 19th (?) century physicians, Drs Cheyne and Stokes.

Jul 19, 2019 1:53 AM

“… At an agricultural show [in 1990], the Agriculture Minister John Gummer was seen offering a beef burger to his daughter …”

In 2007, the 23-year-old daughter of Roger Smith, a friend of the former UK Agriculture Minister John Gummer, died from variant CJD.

The odd thing was that Elizabeth Smith rarely ate burgers as a child, due in part to growing up in a rural area. That is not to say that UK-raised beef in the 1980s and 1990s didn’t affect her health in some way: she may have eaten other products that contained processed meat and offal which were tainted with the prions that cause the condition, or possibly (though a very long shot) even vegetables grown in soil fertilised with tainted bone meal.

See also this article “Grass plants bind, retain, uptake and transport infectious prions”.

Jul 19, 2019 11:05 AM
Reply to  Jen

Meanwhile Brazil Agriculture Minister, Thereza Christina has proved hundreds of agrotoxics and is opening the amazon forest to mines, cutting of tress and other activities which has destroyed 20 footbal fields of the rain florest.
And the environmentalists pushing for climate change ignores this disaster.