Kaiser Speaks about GMOs

Willamette Live

Kaiser Permanente, the nation’s largest not-for-profit health plan, has made an official statement on GMOs (genetically modified organisms in food,) calling the topic important both scientifically and politically.

In our last issue, Salem Weekly described “What You Need To Know About GMOs,” an article we found printed in Kaiser Permanente’s Northwest Fall 2012 newsletter, Partners in Health.

Because the author is not credited and the article itself is not available on Kaiser Permanente’s web site, Salem Weekly queried David Northfield, Media Relations Manager of Kaiser Permanente’s Communications & Organizational Research in Portland, to learn more.

Among other questions, we asked if the text of the article, reflected Kaiser Permanente’s official position on genetically modified organisms in food.

Northfield responded on November 25. He said, “The article appearing in this fall’s issue of Partners in Health, Kaiser Permanente’s newsletter for members, was written by one of our nutritionists, and presents her views and insights on the subject. As a mission-based non-profit healthcare organization, we believe it is important to share information with our members on a wide range of topics related to health care and health, but we do not take an organizational position on every issue.”

Northfield went on to say, “Kaiser Permanente believes the ongoing research and debate on bioengineered foods, or genetically modified organisms (GMOs), is important. We also recognize there are important conversations about related initiatives and propositions. While we believe these are important scientific and political debates, we do not have policy positions on these subjects.”

Though Kaiser Permenente will not state an official policy on GMOs, the nutritionist-author of “What You Need To Know About GMOs” (who is not named,) described studies that showed significant physical damage caused by GMOs and listed ways its members could avoid them.

GMO crops, or biotech crops, are plants whose DNA has been modified by genetic engineering techniques. The process is believed to have begun in 1982 to make tobacco plants hardier.

It has burgeoned since then; a 2011 article published by an industry publication claims a 94-fold increase in worldwide acreage between 1996 and 2011.

In their article, the International Service for the Acquisition of Agri-biotech Applications calls biotech crops “the fastest adopted crop technology in the history of modern agriculture.”

Opponents to GMO foods organized in California this year with Proposition 37, which attempted to require food with GMO content to be labeled, and to prohibit from calling itself “natural.” The Proposition failed on November 6.

Currently in the United States, although ingredients like peanuts must be mentioned on labels, foods with GMOs are not required to be.

Biotech and food corporations spent an estimated $39,000,000 to defeat the California proposition and hide their GMO ingredients.

In addition to a software app suggested by Kaiser Permanente’s nutritionist, Salem Weekly recommends the affiliated web site, nongmoshoppingguide.com.

Meanwhile, an original hard copy of the Partners in Health issue, including the article “What You Need To Know About GMOs” is available in our offices.Kaiser Permanente, the nation’s largest not-for-profit health plan, has made an official statement on GMOs (genetically modified organisms in food,) calling the topic important both scientifically and politically.

In our last issue, Salem Weekly described “What You Need To Know About GMOs,” an article we found printed in Kaiser Permanente’s Northwest Fall 2012 newsletter, Partners in Health.

Because the author is not credited and the article itself is not available on Kaiser Permanente’s web site, Salem Weekly queried David Northfield, Media Relations Manager of Kaiser Permanente’s Communications & Organizational Research in Portland, to learn more.

Among other questions, we asked if the text of the article, reflected Kaiser Permanente’s official position on genetically modified organisms in food.

Northfield responded on November 25. He said, “The article appearing in this fall’s issue of Partners in Health, Kaiser Permanente’s newsletter for members, was written by one of our nutritionists, and presents her views and insights on the subject. As a mission-based non-profit healthcare organization, we believe it is important to share information with our members on a wide range of topics related to health care and health, but we do not take an organizational position on every issue.”

Northfield went on to say, “Kaiser Permanente believes the ongoing research and debate on bioengineered foods, or genetically modified organisms (GMOs), is important. We also recognize there are important conversations about related initiatives and propositions. While we believe these are important scientific and political debates, we do not have policy positions on these subjects.”

Though Kaiser Permenente will not state an official policy on GMOs, the nutritionist-author of “What You Need To Know About GMOs” (who is not named,) described studies that showed significant physical damage caused by GMOs and listed ways its members could avoid them.

GMO crops, or biotech crops, are plants whose DNA has been modified by genetic engineering techniques. The process is believed to have begun in 1982 to make tobacco plants hardier.

It has burgeoned since then; a 2011 article published by an industry publication claims a 94-fold increase in worldwide acreage between 1996 and 2011.

In their article, the International Service for the Acquisition of Agri-biotech Applications calls biotech crops “the fastest adopted crop technology in the history of modern agriculture.”

Opponents to GMO foods organized in California this year with Proposition 37, which attempted to require food with GMO content to be labeled, and to prohibit from calling itself “natural.” The Proposition failed on November 6.

Currently in the United States, although ingredients like peanuts must be mentioned on labels, foods with GMOs are not required to be.

Biotech and food corporations spent an estimated $39,000,000 to defeat the California proposition and hide their GMO ingredients.

In addition to a software app suggested by Kaiser Permanente’s nutritionist, Salem Weekly recommends the affiliated web site, nongmoshoppingguide.com.

Meanwhile, an original hard copy of the Partners in Health issue, including the article “What You Need To Know About GMOs” is available in our offices.

Organic: Food Justice for the 99%

Cornucopia
by Charlotte Vallaeys, M.S., M.T.S.

Dr. Oz in Time Magazine Slandering Families Who Choose Safe, Organic Food for Their Children — Off-Base/Ill Advised

As Americans become increasingly aware of the story behind conventional foods—the ecologically destructive monoculture fields, the petrochemical fertilizers, the toxic pesticides and dangerous fumigants—the agrochemical industry has launched an all-out media offensive against the booming organic industry.

The agrochemical industry’s communications specialists have apparently found willing partners in major nationwide media outlets like The New York Times and Time magazine, which have recently published articles discouraging people from buying organic foods. The message is nearly always the same, as industry-friendly researchers and reporters downplay the role and harm caused by agricultural chemicals and focus instead on the differences between a handful of common nutrients. Despite overwhelming scientific evidence to the contrary, the conclusion is always that organic foods are not worth the extra price because the nutritional differences are minimal.

First, we must set the record straight. Scientific studies show that milk from pastured cows contains higher levels of beneficial fats. Beef from grass-fed cattle and eggs from pastured hens are lower in cholesterol and saturated fat and higher in healthy omega-3 fatty acids and Vitamins A and E. Organic strawberries and tomatoes contain more healthy antioxidants. These are all undisputed facts laid out in a myriad of published, peer-reviewed scientific papers.

Consumers increasingly turn to organic and grass-based foods, based on this scientific evidence that has been reported in magazines, including Time, in recent years. Now, the latest issue of Time mindlessly repeats the agribusiness mantra: “Nutritionally, an egg is an egg.” Milk is milk. And canned peas, with toxic pesticide residues, heated to extreme temperatures during processing, and then placed in a container lined with a suspected endocrine disruptor, are just as healthy as those for sale at a farmer’s market, picked fresh from a local field just hours ago.

The purpose of these media reports and stories seems to be to pull Americans away from thoughtful discourse about our food and back to blissful ignorance. Concern over pesticides, animal welfare, fostering local economies, and pollution turn people toward organic and local foods—and that’s bad for business for the chemical and industrial farming industries. No wonder they want us all to look at an egg, whether produced on a factory farm or laid by a free-range, pastured hen, and see nothing more.

The paternalistic message—to shut up and eat our food—is no longer working. Americans are no longer ignoring the mounting scientific evidence that pesticides, herbicides, fungicides, hormones, antibiotics and other drug residues are harming us, even at extremely low levels, and especially our children.

This scientific evidence about pesticides’ harmful effects, most recently reviewed by the American Academy of Pediatrics and covered in the latest issue of Pediatrics, will continue to be a major driving force behind the booming success and growth of the organic food movement.

The agrochemical industry will not win the hearts and minds (and stomachs) of Americans, especially when the health of our children is on the line. So they have turned their latest attempt to bring Americans back to blind trust in conventional foods by focusing on our collective class resentments. A more sinister message has taken hold, likening a diet of conventional foods to “The 99% Diet” and a chemical-free organic diet as “elitist.”

In Time magazine, Dr. Mehmet Oz, who once told millions of viewers, “I want you to eat organic foods” and “your kids deserve better than to be part of a national chemistry experiment,” has seemingly changed his tune and turned the decision to buy organic foods into a political and class issue.

Not only did Dr. Oz write that conventional foods are nutritionally equal to organic foods (he never mentions pesticide contamination), he calls organic foods “elitist.” Suddenly, a middle-class mother who decides to pay extra for a safe haven from pesticide contamination is called “snooty” and a “food snob” by the very same celebrity physician who once urged her to protect her children from agricultural chemicals by choosing organic.

Of course, the scientific evidence has not changed since Dr. Oz told us to buy organic. The study, for example, that showed statistically significant higher rates of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) in children with higher levels of dietary pesticide exposure has not disappeared, and is considered as scientifically sound and convincing today as it was when it was first published in 2010 and reported in media outlets including Time.

The conventional food advocates are now attempting to dissuade Americans from buying organic foods by turning the issue into one of class and privilege. The tactic is to paint food as a reflection of one’s position in society, like owning a Mercedes or fancy yacht, rather than a question of health and safety—organic food is painted not as a safe haven from pesticides, but as an elitist food for the “1%.” Would any of us 99%’ers want to be considered a “snob?”

Middle-class Americans who prioritize personal finances and choose to protect their children from harmful pesticide residues should be proud of this decision, and should not be bullied or shamed by Oz. Our children, as Dr. Oz once noted, should not serve as the human equivalents of lab rats. Rather than malign organic foods as elitist, we must recognize the very real and indisputable health benefits of organics and work to make pure, wholesome, uncontaminated foods more accessible and affordable for all.

Charlotte Vallaeys, M.S., M.T.S.
Director, Farm and Food Policy
The Cornucopia Institute

The Time cover story from 12/3/12 on “What to Eat Now” by Dr. Mehmet Oz is available, click title.

Excerpts from the article, with Cornucopia’s responses:

Dr. Oz: “Nutritionally speaking, there is little difference between the farmer’s-market bounty and the humble brick from the freezer case.”

Cornucopia response: Dr. Oz compares conventional and organic foods throughout the article by focusing exclusively on the differences between a handful of nutrients. This is exactly what the agrochemical and conventional farming industries, and their front group, the Alliance for Food and Farming, would like the American public to focus on. Just two months ago, Dr. Oz told the viewers of his syndicated television show to buy organic vegetables to avoid pesticide residues. Now, in his copywritten Time story, the word “pesticide” or “agricultural chemical” is never mentioned.

Dr. Oz: “Dispelling these myths—that boutique foods are good, supermarket foods are suspect and you have to spend a lot to eat well—is critical to improving our nation’s health. Organic food is great, it’s just not very democratic.”

Cornucopia response: What can be more democratic than consumers voting with their food dollars to support organic farmers who protect our environment and our health by eschewing harmful and polluting agrochemicals?  Even if there were no direct benefit to our families (plenty of published scientific research indicates there is), when we choose organic food we are protecting farmers and farmworkers from exposure to toxic chemicals. Many farmers, farmworkers and their children have elevated levels of certain cancers and chronic diseases.

Dr. Oz: “The rise of foodie culture over the past decade has venerated all things small-batch, local-farm and organic—all with premium price tags. But let’s be clear: you don’t need to eat like the 1% to eat healthily.”

Cornucopia response: Organic foods are not for the “1%.” Organic foods are for everybody, and are accessible and affordable to most families who prioritize their expenses. Many organic consumers forgo other “luxuries,” whether it be iPhones, vacations, new cars – all of which are advertised in the same Time magazine where Dr. Oz’s article appears – in order to be able to afford organic foods to protect their family’s health. These decisions should be applauded, not turned into a character flaw.

Dr. Oz: “After several years of research and experience, I have come to an encouraging conclusion: the American food supply is abundant, nutritionally sound, affordable and, with a few simple considerations, comparable to the most elite organic diets. Save the cash; the 99% diet can be good for you.”

Cornucopia response: Dr. Oz’s research apparently missed the countless studies showing that organic foods are nutritionally superior, lower in pesticide residues, lower in antibiotic-resistant pathogen contamination, etc. In addition to being published in peer-reviewed journals, testing by independent sources such as Consumer Reports (Consumer Union) and government agencies such as the USDA corroborate these findings.

Dr. Oz: “I consider it a public-health service to the consumer who has to feed a family of five or the person who wants to make all the right choices and instead is alienated and dejected because the marketing of healthy foods too often blurs into elitism, with all the expense and culinary affectation that implies.”

Cornucopia response: The added expense of buying organic foods is an investment in health. In the interest of public health, Dr. Oz should have mentioned the pesticides, hormones, antibiotics, synthetic preservatives, artificial dyes and sweeteners, and other harmful inputs used in conventional farming and food production. Comparing nutrients is just one aspect of a cost-benefit analysis. Dr. Oz owes his loyal fans, who respect his judgment, a more thoughtful and nuanced analysis.

Dr. Oz: “There’s no question that free-range chickens and grass-fed, pasture-dwelling cows lead happier–if not appreciably longer–lives than animals raised on factory farms. They are also kept free of hormones and antibiotics and are less likely to carry communicable bacteria like E. coli, which are common on crowded feedlots. If these things are important to you and you have the money to spend, then by all means opt for pricier organic meats.”

Cornucopia response: Yes, Dr. Oz, avoiding hormones and antibiotics is important to us, and it should be to you, too.
However, just because a package says “free range” or “grass-fed” does not mean it is certified organic, and therefore is not certified to be produced without some of the most dangerous and objectionable drugs. Concerned consumers should go out of their way to seek out the organic seal.

Dr. Oz: “But for the most part, it’s O.K. to skip the meat boutiques and the high-end butchers. Nutritionally, there is not much difference between, say, grass-fed beef and the feedlot variety.”

Cornucopia response: Dr. Oz’s statement is not backed by scientific data, which consistently shows lower levels of cholesterol and saturated fat and higher levels of beneficial omega-3 fats and vitamins in grass-fed beef compared with feedlot beef.

Dr. Oz: “Let’s also take a moment to celebrate the tuna-salad sandwich, which is to lunch what the ’57 Chevy is to cars–basic and brilliant.”

Cornucopia response: It is unconscionable that Dr. Oz touts the nutritional benefits of canned tuna, without mentioning the FDA and EPA warnings concerning methylmercury contamination. The FDA and EPA recommend that women who may become pregnant, pregnant women, nursing mothers and young children limit their consumption of canned light tuna to no more than 12 ounces per week, and their consumption of canned albacore tuna to no more than 6 ounces per week.

Dr. Oz: “Preserves and jams without added sugar can be great sources of dietary fiber, vitamin A, vitamin C and potassium.”

Cornucopia response: Preserves and jams without added sugar often contain added artificial sweeteners, such as aspartame, which has been linked in studies to cancer and neurological damage. Aspartame and other artificial sweeteners are banned in organic products.

Dr. Oz: “We know more about the connection between food and health than ever before—down to the molecular level, actually. This has provided us the curious luxury of being fussy, even snooty, about what we eat, considering some foods, well, below our station. That’s silly. Food isn’t about cachet. It’s about nourishment, pleasure and the profound well-being that comes from the way meals draw us together.”

Cornucopia response: Dr. Oz spends the entire article attempting to convince the American public that there are few, if any, differences between conventional and organic foods. Yet in his closing paragraphs he tacitly acknowledges that we “know more about … food and health than ever before – down to the molecular level.” This contradicts his earlier statements that there are no differences.

Most people who buy organic foods do so not because they are “snooty,” as Dr. Oz suggests, but because they seek to protect themselves and their families from the widely recognized harmful effects of pesticides and other agrichemicals.

Study Reveals That 1 in 10 Teens Suffers from Liver Disease

GreenMedInfo
by Heidi Stevenson

A shocking report shows that one in ten American teens are now suffering from liver disease—a direct result of the distortion and pollution of our food system that allows fructose to be treated as if it’s perfectly safe.

In a shocking report that bodes ill for the future health of the generation now entering adulthood, ten percent of today’s teens in the United States suffers from nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD).

Data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) was examined by Marilyn Vos of Emery University. NHANES recorded data on 10,359 teenagers aged 12-18 from 1988-2008. Vos and co-researchers found that 9.9% have NAFLD.

Even more ominously, Vos stated that NAFLD “seems to be increasing faster than the prevalence of obesity.” Previously, the disease has been very closely associated with obesity. Now, though, it’s clear that there’s more than excess weight driving the increase in liver disease.

High fructose corn syrup (HFCS) is known to be associated with nonalcoholic fatty liver disease. Now that we’re seeing this once-rare disorder affecting one in ten teenagers, one must wonder how health agencies like the FDA can continue to ignore the devastation resulting from out-of-control Agribusiness, which is clearly profiting from the devastation of the people’s health.

Instead, though, Dr. Vos is advocating the creation of community and school programs to promote healthy food, exercise, and weight loss. This is not addressing the root cause. It is, in fact, effectively blaming the victims for their poor health.

Difficulty Avoiding Fructose

The fact is that it’s becoming more and more difficult to obtain a healthy diet. Our society is now designed around the dictates of Agribusiness. Go into any supermarket and you will see aisle after aisle of prepared foods. If you read package ingredients, it’s horrifying to see that most of it contains massive amounts of sugar, fructose, and artificial sweeteners—not to mention all the other toxic ingredients.

Too many of today’s harassed and stressed parents often find it difficult, both in terms of finances and time, to provide decent diets for their children. Even those who manage to find the time and money to provide good food often don’t know what it is, since they’ve never seen it themselves and the agencies that should be providing information often produce lies. The FDA classifies fructose as GRAS—generally recognized as safe.

As a result, HFCS and other forms of fructose are found in nearly every type of product on supermarket shelves, including ones that aren’t supposed to be sweet. It’s replacing sugar in candies and soft drinks, so children in particular are at risk. Avoiding it means avoiding nearly all prepared foods, including ones intended to aid in home cooking, like bottled sauces.

Fructose Metablism

Fructose is not metabolized in the same way that glucose (regular sugar) is, so treating it as equivalent is absurd:

Fructose is metabolized completely by the liver, but only 20% of glucose metabolism is by the liver. This adds to the load that the liver must carry.

Fructose results in storing three times more fat than glucose, thus fueling the obesity epidemic.

Fructose is probably the culprit behind a serious increase in gout because its metabolism creates uric acid.
The truth is that fructose consumed outside of fruit, where it’s tightly bound and therefore released slowly during digestion, is creating havoc with people’s health. It’s obviously a major factor in the health destruction of at least one in ten teens. These young people face severely shortened lives with tragically limited options because of ill health.


Fructose Damage

NAFLD affects the liver’s ability to perform many critical functions, including regulation of blood glucose and cholesterol, fat burning, metabolism of hormones, vitamin A storage, and elimination of toxins, which is of course, becoming a more and more critical function in this increasingly polluted world.

Fatty liver disease leads to diabetes, hepatitis, cirrhosis, and cancer. It also means that overall health of the entire body is harmed, so that the victim’s enjoyment of life is proscribed.

Nonetheless, there is no attempt to address the cause, Agribusiness that’s run so rampant it can control nearly all aspects of our access to food. Instead, researchers who clearly document how rampant NAFLD is—to the point that one-tenth of teens are now sick with it—prefer to focus on the creation of ever-more government programs that will drain ever-more money from the populace and won’t do a bit of good.

Religious Exemptions to Vaccines are Life or Death Rights

Activist Post
by Sandor White

Over many years, the media and corporations have mounted a concerted effort to demean religious faith and to portray certain religious groups as dangerous to modern society. Darwin and evolution are often the means, pitting “modern science” against “religious dogma.”

The problem is that “science” has become the pawn of the corporations. People are recognizing that very keenly as they watch the endless lies by Monsanto about genetically engineered food be exposed.

A recent Stanford “study,” blasted all over the country by media, purporting to show that organic food is no different from pesticide-ridden crops, is a prime example, with only a bit of investigating revealing that the person behind the study had once done bogus studies for the Tobacco Industry as well. The study is so loose with reality that it even says agribusiness “slows pace of global warming” even though agribusiness’s seeds (and the pharmaceutical industries vaccines and pills) are based on petrochemicals, central to driving global warming.

Science is being cavalierly twisted by the corporations and media, and in a direction that is anti-life. One of the most important protections people have against such falsehoods is, ironically, religious belief.

That belief is meant to be based on conscience and morality. It was the truth-filled, loving force that rid India of the British Empire. It was a strong force against the Vietnam War as priests were willing to go to jail to stop it. It is a force in Burma where Buddhist monks have stood against a repressive government. It is a force in Tibet now as monks have burned themselves to death in response to the totalitarian Chinese rule attempting to stamp out religious life there. There has been a demonization of those opposed to abortion, but has anyone stopped to think what it would mean for this culture to be fine with killing fetuses, not faced with the moral questions raised by those arguing we have no right to take a life?

Right now, true concern for health is being ignored by the WHO, which has turned its back on 47,500 children paralyzed by Bill Gates’ polio campaign in India as well as children damaged or killed in Pakistan. The WHO, the World Bank and Gates are using media to tell the world that the vaccines are eliminating polio, when in fact the scientific community has known for 10 years that it can never be eliminated now that the biotech industry has synthesized the virus (which is twice as deadly as wild polio). Corporate media is a means to seek funds to continue this catastrophe, even suggesting American women personally participate, and to hide from the world that, in fact, polio is being systematically spread across Asia and Africa.

When imams in Africa or groups in Asia object to vaccines, worried that children are being crippled and dying, media is used to assault them for being anti-science, anti-progress, and often imply religious stupidity. Yet it was a religious group that exposed the reality of tetanus vaccines being used to sterilize people.

Americans are aware that the country is being plundered – losing its homes, its jobs, its farms, its access to real food, its economy, its rights – by politicians and corporations both operating without moral values. Americans’ bodies are also under assault. If those bodies can be made ill, they become the source, over a lifetime of sickness, of a fortune for corporations selling vaccines.

This is another form of the Idiot Cycle, in which the companies which sicken people with their toxins then provide the “medicines” to treat those illnesses.

Religious belief is a sizable roadblock to such power, and when it comes to vaccines, it is precisely moral commitment to the life of children and of their community that has stood in the way. That morality often (though not solely) comes from religious belief.

In that context, it is vital to note what is occurring in the US in terms of efforts to undermine religious rights.

The religious exemption to vaccination is now under heavy attack across the country. In the video below, Barbara Loe Fisher, co-founder of the National Vaccine Information Center (NVIC), discusses this important exemption, and why it’s so vital we defend our right to opt out of vaccinations for medical, religious, or conscientious belief reasons.
All Americans need to know their options for legally opting-out of vaccinations, and you also need to know why it’s so important to protect this legal option, whether you choose to use every federally recommended vaccine for yourself and your children or not.

The Nuremberg Code was established after the Holocaust to prevent the pharmaceutical industry from ever again forcing “medical procedures” on people against their wil. It is this defense against such industry power that is under attack. Without exemptions, people would be forced to submit their children to vaccines (and perhaps submit themselves if laws are written to include adults). As it is becoming clear the vaccines are actually causing diseases, people are also recognizing that there is profit in diseases (the article is by a Jewish cardiologist).

People, faced with the thought that vaccines may not in fact be the saving miracle of modern medicine, often fall back on what they have been told about the polio and smallpox vaccines as evidence of people’s lives being saved. Polio and smallpox are the big threats that leave people vulnerable to doing whatever the government says if thet announce an outbreak of some infectious disease. Yet what we were told about the polio vaccine is as false as what we have been told about the Smallpox vaccine. We have been fed fear on a steady basis so the public will be willing to submit to whatever “solution” is suggested.

West Nile virus is the latest such scare, with people being told it’s incurable and that spraying of toxic chemicals to kill mosquitoes must be done. Yet West Nile virus has never even been isolated and may actually be a collections of symptoms related to toxins (in which case spraying more is an even more terrible idea that people know it already is), and there is cure but it has been suppressed (as was an easy cure for polio).

(In fact, there is a proven cure for over 70 infectious diseases – meningitis, anthrax, hepatitis, dengue, West Nile, polio, swine flu, etc. See this video), making vaccines obsolete, even if they weren’t dangerous.)

What if a Smallpox outbreak (or any other disease) were announced and the CDC said everyone must get the vaccine? Here is where religious exemptions become vital as a means to refuse, for the CDC has admitted the small pox vaccine caused Smallpox. And in addition, the CDC has admitted the vaccine causes heart problems and warns people should not get it if (quote):

You have been told by a doctor that you have high blood pressure.
You have been told by a doctor that you have high blood cholesterol.
You have been told by a doctor that you have diabetes or high blood sugar.
You have a first degree relative (for example mother, father, brother, or sister) who had a heart condition before the age of 50.

Powerful governments have a long history of undermining religious belief. In its quiet way, such beliefs stand against power and support the moral life and spiritual grounding of human beings. “Science” captured by corporations has been used to demean religious belief. Those same corporations have used media to promote vaccines, to cover up crippling and deaths, and to suppress actual cures. So human thoughts based on moral beliefs are vital protection for life. The assault on religious exemptions for vaccines is meant to remove morality as a roadblock to profits.

Just as morality in general is critical to maintain and even to expand, so too are religious exemptions. Some people may use such exemptions to say “No” to vaccines because they believe they violate a deeply held religious conviction that the body is a blessed gift from God and may not be intruded on by a government. Some may say “No” to being experimented on based on a historical awareness that the pharmaceutical industry worked to develop a means to sterilize people at doctor’s appointments without their knowing. Others may fight for religious exemption because they see the Nuremberg Code as a phoenix rising out of the Holocaust and believe it is their religious obligation to protect it (“the informed consent” of religious exemptions) as part of “Never again.” Other may from religious conviction object to the immorality of an industry generating “diseases for profits.”

Whatever the moral conviction, religious exemptions to vaccines are a spiritual counterbalance to power and profit, and in that, they are essential to all Americans.

Related: The Laws of the Pharmaceutical Industry

Gaia Health
by Heidi Stevenson

Two attenuated vaccine viruses have swapped genetic material to form a new and more virulent disease in Australian chickens—an indictment of both Agribusiness farming and vaccine technology.

The viruses from two different vaccines have recombined to form two new and even deadlier diseases than the original. The vaccine virus strains are attenuated, so that they can’t produce serious disease. Nonetheless, these two weakened strains produced more virulent disease than the one they’re meant to prevent.

According to Science, one of the authors of the paper documenting this development, veterinary microbiologist Glenn Browning, states:

This shows that recombination of such strains can happen and people need to think about it.

The disease the vaccines are intended to prevent, infectious laryngotracheitis (ILTV), is no laughing matter. It’s a herpes virus that causes respiratory illness. Chickens can choke on blood and mucus, resulting in the deaths of up to one-fifth of those affected. However, the two new viruses produce even more severe disease.

The Study

Clearly titled “Attenuated Vaccines Can Recombine to Form Virulent Field Viruses”, the study investigated the cause of the new ILTV diseases(2). They performed whole-genome sequencing of the three strains of viruses found in the vaccines and the two new disease strains. The results were consistent with interspecies recombination. They then confirmed those results by comparing the sequences of the new viruses with those of the vaccine viruses. They found the specific regions of genetic crossover, thus confirming that the new viruses are a result of a gene exchange in the attenuated vaccine viruses.

After that, they tested the new viruses for virulence by seeing how rapidly they reproduced. They found that “both recombinants had significantly increased virulence or replication compared with their parent strains.”

The authors concluded:

The rapid emergence of two virulent recombinants suggests that recombination between
attenuated herpes virus vaccines and resultant restoration of virulence may be rare but can bring about a fitness advantage, with severe consequences. The findings from this study raise concerns about the use of multiple distinct attenuated herpes virus vaccines under conditions that favor recombination. These findings have implications for the use of herpes viruses, and possibly other DNA viruses, as attenuated vaccines or vaccine vectors.

ABC reports Browning as saying:

We suspect that this sort of event could potentially happen in other animal species as well and with other viruses in addition to infectious laryngotracheitis virus. So we believe that what we’ve seen here has potentially wider implications than just this particular disease in poultry.

Implications

This is not only one way in which vaccines can create more virulent diseases. As reported in Whooping Cough Epidemic Caused by Virulent New Pertussis Strain—And It’s the Result of Vaccine, the whooping cough (pertussis) vaccine has caused a new and more virulent form of pertussis, which is responsible for most of the current outbreaks. This new form of pertussis probably already existed, but was kept in check by the variety for which the vaccination was made.

In the case of the oral polio vaccine, currently in heavy use in Africa and India, the attenuated virus has apparently evolved in human bodies, rather than in the wild as has been the case with pertussis. This seems to have happened on several occasions, but the result is new and more virulent forms of polio in circulation, as discussed in Mutated Polio From Vaccine Is Spreading in Africa.

Further, vaccines may be fueling increases in seemingly unrelated diseases. Vaccines May Be Fueling the Increasing Rate of Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma Cancer examines this likelihood.

The Inherent Error

Of course, as shown in the video on the right, the methods now used to raise chickens and eggs are likely the primary reason vaccines are needed to prevent ILTV. Battery farming, where birds are inhumanely crowded in tiny cages stacked on top of each other for their entire lives weaken them so they’re susceptible to even the most minor illness. If one catches something, it’s bound to spread like wildfire.

The Law of Unintended Consequences is at work demonstrating that there’s a price to be paid for trying to circumvent nature rather than work with it. By raising animals in such inhumane and unnatural ways, they’re made unhealthy. That lack of health then requires further unnatural methods. As we’re now seeing, the piper must ultimately be paid. A new and more virulent disease has been created.

At some point, these maniacs need to come to grips with a basic fact: We are part of nature. When we try to operate outside it, we will pay a price. The longer we get away with it, the greater the price becomes. Playing at god does not make us gods. Nature will ultimately restore the balance that we have the hubris to believe doesn’t include us.

Eating Antibiotic-Fed Chicken Leading to Bladder Infection Spike

Natural Society
Lisa Garber

We shouldn’t need much more reason to avoid antibiotic-fed chicken than the abuse and neglect they suffer in cages and “free range” facilities. But in case anyone still has second thoughts, we can safely put them to rest now that conventionally-raised chickens have been linked to urinary tract infections in people. Eating the antibiotic-fed chicken can especially lead to a urinary tract infection in women.

Urinary Tract Infection in Women and Chickens in Slaughterhouses with E. Coli

A group of researchers—in the US, Canada, Europe, and Australia—have found genetic similarities between E. coli from slaughterhouse animals, especially chickens, and the bacteria causing a urinary tract infection in women.

Journalist Maryn McKenna said on NPR that:

“The strains of E. coli that they have been tracking [in slaughtered chickens and turkeys] happen to be the kind that leave the gut to create infections elsewhere in the body. Specifically they are the strains responsible for urinary tract infections, which in the US, occur up to eight million times per year.”

The researchers’ findings coincide with a recorded change of a urinary tract infection in women resistant to standard treatment in the past decade.

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention found the evidence so compelling as to report on 12 July, “ExPEC [Extraintestinal Pathogenic E. coli] transmission from food animals could be responsible for human infections, and chickens are the most probable reservoir.”

Conflicts of Interest

Meanwhile, the National Chicken Council—a pro-poultry industry lobby—retorts that chickens fed antibiotics are not the source of E. coli and that antibiotics in their feed has no effect on people who eat them. (The conflict of interest here hardly needs to be pointed out.)

According to the Food and Drug Administration, 80 percent of antibiotics sold in the US is administered to livestock, not people. (Ask the financially invested Animal Health Institute, though, and you’ll get a mere 28 percent.) Meanwhile, the FDA—bending to industrial pressure—has done “shockingly little” to combat the widespread and abused implementation of antibiotics in animal feed. Judge Theodore H. Katz ordered the FDA back in June to get its act together rather than ignore scientific evidence and citizen petitions. The future of antibiotics in livestock—and the effects on omnivorous humans—remains hazy.