Bill Passed: EPA Must Only Take Advice from Industry Shills, NOT from Independent Scientists

Organic Prepper
by Daisy Luther

The Environmental Protection Agency is a federal agency that is charged with the responsibility of writing and enforcing legislation to protect human health and the environment. Established under Nixon in 1970, the EPA is another one of those agencies that sounds like a good idea, until you peel off the shiny friendly top layer to discover the stench of corruption underneath. Up until now, they at least pretended to be there to serve as watchdogs, but it seems like they’ve decided to give up on that silly illusion.

Since they are looking after all things environmental, they need unbiased specialists to advise them on policies and issues.

Silly me, I always thought that sounded sort of…I dunno…science-y.

Our estimable House of Representatives disagrees.

Apparently they feel the EPA should not take advice from independent scientists at all. In fact, they believe it so strongly that they just passed a bill barring the freaking ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY from taking the advice of independent scientists. They are now expected to take their advice from people who are “industry affiliated.” Oh – and those people don’t actually have to be scientists at all.

Yeah. Because that’s not a conflict of interest.

Certainly people who work for companies like Monsanto or Dupont will be diligent in ensuring a healthy environment, even if it costs their companies extra money, right? I’m sure those folks that work for companies that indulge in fracking will absolutely halt it if it seems like it’s causing problems with the groundwater or something. No matter what the cost to their companies, we can all feel confident that they’ll stringently do what’s right.

A bill passed through the US House of Representatives is designed to prevent qualified, independent scientists from advising the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). They will be replaced with industry affiliated choices, who may or may not have relevant scientific expertise, but whose paychecks benefit from telling the EPA what their employers want to hear.

The EPA’s Science Advisory Board (SAB) was established in 1978 to ensure the EPA uses the most up to date and relevant scientific research for its decision making and that the EPA’s programs reflect this advice. It has served in this role, most often uncontroversially, through 36 years and six presidents. If the new bill passes the Senate and wins presidential approval, however, that is about to change.

The bill would prevent scientists from voting on the release into the environment of a chemical by their employers. Nevertheless, they would be allowed to vote to release a nearly identical chemical, Grifo notes, including some that would set a precedent that would be very useful to the company in future decisions.

More insidiously, research scientists are barred under the act from advising on any topic that might “directly or indirectly involve review and evaluation of their own work”. In other words, the only people barred from advising the EPA on a particular chemical are those who have actually studied its toxicity or effect on the environment. (source)

How does it even make the slightest bit of sense to have the foxes that financially benefit in charge of this particular hen house? How can they possibly justify this decision?

One controversy after another can be attributed to the EPA, an agency charged with protecting the air we breathe, the soil in which we grow our food and the water that we drink. Despite irrefutable proof that glyphosate causes cancer, the EPA increased the amount allowed to be used agriculturally. They regulate everyday folks, forcing upgrades of woodstoves, while allowing big businesses to pollute in far more spectacular an amount than a self-sufficient family could ever create.

When the radiation from Fukushima became alarmingly high on our shores, the EPA was right on top of things with their response. First, they promptly closed down 8 of 18 radiation measuring stations in the hardest hit area, California. Then, to further calm the good people of the nation, the EPA magically changed the numbers. They’ve raised the amount of radiation that we can safely absorb and ingest. It wouldn’t do for the large factory farms to be unable to sell their tainted produce or for the huge dairies to be stuck with all that radioactive milk. In fact, the radiation in our food supply was of so little concern to the EPA that they began to tell us that a little bit of radiation is good for us. According to a report citing the EPA, a bit of radiation can prevent cancer, instead of causing it.

At the bottom of each controversy can be found ties to the conspiracies of the big businesses that really run the country. Decisions are being auctioned off to industry lobbyists with the most money and influence.

And now, the elected officials in the House of Representatives have just sanctioned a blatant corporate takeover of the EPA. They aren’t even pretending to be protecting the environment now.

New Study: FDA-Approved Levels of Aspartame Distort Brain Function, Kill Brain Cells

Nutritional Anarchy

As reported before, aspartame has been shown time and again in studies (the ones not commissioned by the industry) to be bad for you.

Now yet another new study, this one published in the journal Redox Biology, has concluded what lots of other research over the past decades has repeatedly shown — aspartame, the popular sweetener in over 6,000 grocery store items, including everything from soup mixes to carbonated beverages to chewing gum — can essentially program your brain cells to kill themselves.

Key study findings include:
  • Aspartame administration alters the functional activity in the brain by elevating the antioxidant levels.
  • Chronic aspartame consumption altered the neuronal function and neurodegeneration in brain.
  • Observed changes may be due to the methanol or its metabolite.
  • Long-term FDA approved daily acceptable intake (40 mg/kg bwt) aspartame administration distorted the brain function and generated apoptosis in brain regions.
Apoptosis is defined as, “the process of programmed cell death in multicellular organisms. Biochemical events lead to characteristic cell changes and death.”
So even at the FDA acceptable levels, consuming this chemical is just not good for you, no matter what the mega food corporations and their lobbies say.
Aspartame (otherwise known by its brand names NutraSweet and Equal) is one of the most widely used artificial sweeteners in foods today. It breaks down into three components: 50 percent phenylalanine, 40 percent aspartic acid, and 10 percent methanol (yummy). It comes from genetically modified (GM) E. coli bacteria, and by “comes from”, I mean aspartame is GM bacteria poop (super yummy). Aspartic acid is an excitotoxin, methanol is the wood alcohol used in antifreeze, and too much of the amino acid phenylalanine in the brain can decrease serotonin levels over time, leading to chemical imbalances that can actually induce mood disorders and depression.
Dr. Mercola has noted that aspartame actually accounts for over 75 percent of adverse food additive reactions reported to the FDA, including:
“Headaches/migraines, dizziness, seizures, nausea, numbness, muscle spasms, weight gain, rashes, depression, fatigue, irritability, tachycardia, insomnia, vision problems, hearing loss, heart palpitations, breathing difficulties, anxiety attacks, slurred speech, loss of taste, tinnitus, vertigo, memory loss, and joint pain.”
In fact, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) even lists aspartame as a “chemical with substantial evidence of developmental neurotoxicity” on its database of developmental neurotoxicants.
It’s the methanol released during aspartame’s metabolism, in this particular case, which these researchers say is helping to generate free radicals that lead to cell damage and death:
This study provides a scientific evidence to conclude that aspartame is toxic to the body system and particularly in brain it increase the free radicals and triggers the apoptosis. Aspartame consumption in a long-term basis may affect the brain. It may be due to its metabolite methanol Aspartame may act as a chemical stressor as indicated by the corticosteroid level. (source)
But I guess we should just keep on consuming it, right?
When I typed “FDA Aspartame” into Google’s search engine to get the FDA’s official take on how safe and wonderful this chemical is for everyone to eat all the time, ironically, the first thing that popped up was a file on the FDA.gov website about aspartame’s toxicity that lists off at least 50 horrible side effects people have experienced from eating and drinking this stuff.
The document, Docket # 02P-0317 Recall Aspartame as a Neurotoxic Drug: File #4: Reported Aspartame Toxicity Reactions by Mark Gold of the Aspartame Toxicity Information Center, also notes that the FDA admittedly stopped recording aspartame toxicity reactions back in 1995, so its figures on exactly who is being negatively affected by aspartame and how aren’t just sketchy, they’re apparently nonexistent:
 The FDA and NutraSweet have claimed that the number of reported adverse reactions have declined substantially since the mid-1980s (Pauli 1995, Butchko 1994). In addition, the FDA recently claimed that the number of reported toxicity reactions for 1995 was only 11 (WSJ 1996)! It is important to realize that during the mid-1970s the FDA was investigating wrong-doings of the aspartame manufacturer and stated the facts exactly as they found them:
 ”[The manufacturer] lied and they didn’t submit the real nature of their observations because had they done that it is more than likely that a great number of these studies would have been rejected simply for adequacy. What Searle did, they took great pains to camouflage these shortcomings of the study. As I say filter and just present to the FDA what they wished the FDA to know and they did other terrible things for instance animals would develop tumors while they were under study. Well they would remove these tumors from the animals.” [FDA Toxicologist and Task Force member, Dr. Andrian Gross (Wilson 1985)]
During the late 1970s and early 1980s, a number of key government and FDA officials left their jobs to work with companies related to the aspartame industry (GAO 1986). This included key FDA officials such as the head of the FDA Bureau of Foods becoming a Vice President of the National Drink Association and the FDA Commissioner becoming a high-paid consultant for the manufacturer’s PR firm, Burston Marsteller (Gordon 1987). After this period of time, there was no scientific evidence and no amount of serious toxicity reports that could get the FDA to seriously consider funding independent, properly-conducted (e.g., chronic exposure) research. That appearance of the FDA being under the total control of the manufacturer, Monsanto, continues to this day.
I include these comments about the FDA to demonstrate why no independent scientist familiar with the aspartame issue takes statements from the FDA such as “11 reported reactions in 1995″ seriously.  There are many people, including myself who have received that many toxicity reaction reports in a single day during 1995. The reality is that independent organizations have noted that aspartame toxicity reaction reports given to them have *increased* every year since the late 1980s (Stoddard 1995).  It is also important to note that in mid-1995, the FDA admited that it had stopped recording aspartame toxicity reactions (Food 1995).  That may have something to do with why the numbers that the FDA reported to the Wall Street Journal (WSJ 1996) were so small! (source)
Why does aspartame continue to be approved and allowed in food after food after drink after gum after food?
That might be a good question for our current FDA Deputy Commissioner for Foods, Michael Taylor, who used to be Vice President of Public Policy and a lawyer for Monsanto. He might have some special insight, considering that Monsanto purchased G.D. Searle, the chemical company that held the patent to aspartame, back in 1985.
MonsantoGovVenn

Irradiation of Food Induces Radioactivity: Government Claims That It Doesn’t Are Lies

Gaia Health

We are routinely told that irradiation can’t possibly make food radioactive. It’s a lie.

The official stance of both the US and UK, that radiation is not induced by the process, is false. It is, in fact, an outright lie. It has been understood for decades that irradiation of food renders it radioactive. The question isn’t whether it happens. The question is how serious the health risk is.

The fact that food irradiation carries significant and well-documented danger to health should have resulted in it being stopped before it was ever implemented. That it hasn’t tells us all we need to know about the purpose of our regulatory agencies.

Ultimately, though, what’s more upsetting is learning that we’ve been outright lied to about the most fearful aspect of food irradiation. Radioactivity is induced by it.

Documentation for Irradiation-Induced Radioactivity

No less an authority than the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has clearly documented that irradiation of food induces radioactivity. Medical journals have documented it. The FDA regulates the acceptable amount of induced radiation in food packaging, all the while claiming that the food itself isn’t affected!

While documenting that irradiation induces radioactivity in food, the IAEA’s report(1) tries to diminish its significance by comparing it with background radiation. However, it isn’t a matter of one or the other, background radiation or irradiation-induced radiation. It’s the sum of both that matters—not to mention other sources that should be added in, such as medical test devices and airport scanners. They are all additive.

Another problem is that food is ingested. Foods that have become more radioactive through irradiation are taken into the body and become part of the cellular makeup. Therefore, the effects of irradiation-induced radiation in foods may be worse than other sources.

Should We Be Concerned About Irradiation-Induced Radioactivity in Food?

Exactly how bad is irradiation-induced food radioactivity? That’s a good question—one that is studiously ignored by the powers-that-be. After all, it’s rather difficult to do research on something when the official stance is that the problem doesn’t exist.

Of course, we do know that many studies documenting harm from irradiated foods have been done. Interestingly, much of that harm tends to coincide with the sort of damage done by radiation.

FDA Once Banned Irradiation

In 1968, the FDA ended the practice of irradiating bacon for military personnel after learning that lab animals fed irradiated food died early and suffered from a rare cancer, other tumors, reproductive problems and inadequate weight gain. All of these are associated with radiation exposure…yet the FDA now says that irradiation doesn’t harm foods or make them radioactive.

EPA’s Gambit

This is the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA’s) answer to the question(2), Can irradiation make food radioactive?

No. Food does not come in contact with radioactive material during food irradiation, and cannot be contaminated this way. Radiation that is too energetic, however, can disrupt the energy balance in the nuclei of food atoms, making them unstable (radioactive). This is known as induced radioactivity.

Electron and x-ray beams can be energetic enough to induce radioactivity. To prevent induced radioactivity, FDA limits the energy of the radiation from these sources to less than 4 mega-electron volts. Radiation from cobalt-60 sources is not energetic enough to induce radioactivity.

Isn’t that cute? First, the EPA answers with an unequivocal no, stating that food “cannot be contaminated this way”. Then, they go on to describe two methods that can induce radioactivity, while claiming that the FDA’s limits prevent it from happening. But, that simply is not true. The IAEA’s report clarifies that fact.

Irradiation Methods

There are three methods of irradiating food: gamma rays, x-rays, and electron beams. At first glance, it would seem that electron beams and x-rays would be preferable, since they are not radioactive. The issue, though, isn’t whether the tool used to irradiate foods is radioactive, but whether it results in radioactivity in the food. Remarkably, there is some information to indicate that x-rays produce more radiation in food than the other methods.

Comparisons between irradiation methods can be difficult. Further complicating things is that different elements in foods react differently. Iodine, for example, is a necessary nutrient that is easily made radioactive, and is the element on which most emphasis is placed. Because different foods respond in different ways, absolute conclusions about all foods and all methods of irradiation can’t be made. However, some generalities can be drawn.

A paper entitled Report on the Safety and Wholesomeness of Irradiated Foods (The Report) was produced in 1985 by the Advisory Committee on Irradiated and Novel Foods, a UK agency. It was reviewed by the Organic Consumers Association (OCA), which concluded the following:

The Report clearly stated that gamma rays and high-speed electrons can induce radioactivity in food.

Read more here

EPA Colluded In Coverup Of Decades Of Monsanto Poisoning

Organic Consumers Association

2,4-D and the dioxin pollution it creates are too dangerous to allow, period, but in the hands of bad actors like Monsanto and Dow Chemical the dangers increase exponentially. What’s the Environmental Protection Agency doing? Helping coverup the chemical companies’ crimes!

In February, Monsanto agreed to pay up to $93 million in a class-action lawsuit brought by the residents of Nitro, West Virginia, for dioxin exposure from accidents and pollution at an herbicide plant that operated in their town from 1929 to 2004.

That may seem like justice, but it is actually the result of Monsanto’s extraordinary efforts to hide the truth, evade criminal prosecution and avoid legal responsibility.

A brief criminal fraud investigation conducted (and quickly aborted) by the EPA revealed that Monsanto used a disaster at their Nitro, WV, plant to manufacture “evidence” that dioxin exposure produced a skin condition called chloracne, but was not responsible for neurological health effects or cancers such as Non-Hodgkins lymphoma.

These conclusions were repeatedly utilized by EPA and the Veterans Administration to deny help to citizens exposed to dioxin, if these persons did not exhibit chloracne.

The EPA knew the truth about Monsanto’s dioxin crimes, but it decided to hide it. Why? It would have affected us all. EPA’s brief criminal investigation of Monsanto included evidence that Monsanto knowingly contaminated Lysol with dioxin, even as the product was being marketed for cleaning babies’ toys.

Here are the details of this jaw-dropping and heart-breaking case of corporate criminality and EPA collusion.

According to Natural News:
In the town of Nitro, West Virginia, Monsanto operated a chemical plant from 1929 to 1995, making an herbicide that had dioxin as a by-product. The name dioxin refers to a group of highly toxic chemicals that have been linked to heart and liver disease, human reproductive disorders, and developmental problems. Dioxin persists in the environment and accumulates in the body, even in small amounts. In 2001, the U.S. government listed dioxin as a “known human carcinogen”.

In 1949, at the Nitro plant, a pressure valve blew on a container of this herbicide, producing a plume of vapor and white smoke that drifted out over the town. Residue coated the interior of buildings and those inside them with a fine black powder. Within days, workers experienced skin eruptions, and many were diagnosed with chloracne, a long lasting and disfiguring condition. Others felt intense pains in their chest, legs and trunk. A medical report from the time said the explosion “caused a systemic intoxication in the workers involving most major organ systems.” Doctors detected a strong odor coming from the patients they described as men “excreting a foreign chemical through their skins”.
Monsanto downplayed the incident, saying that the contaminant was “fairly slow acting” and only an irritant to the skin.
Meanwhile, the Nitro plant continued to produce herbicides, In the 1960’s it manufactured Agent Orange, the powerful herbicide used by the U.S. military to defoliate jungles during the Vietnam War, and which became the focus of lawsuits by veterans contending they had been harmed by exposure to the chemical. Agent Orange also created dioxin as a by-product.
At the Nitro plant, dioxin waste went into landfills, storm drains, streams, sewers, into bags with the herbicide, and then the waste was burned out into the air. Dioxin from the plant can still be found in nearby streams, rivers, and fish.

According to Source Watch, in 1990, Cate Jenkins, a PhD chemist at EPA, became convinced that Monsanto had deliberately manipulated studies of worker victims of the Nitro disaster showing that dioxin was a human carcinogen.

Dr. Jenkins wrote a memorandum entitled “Newly Revealed Fraud by Monsanto in an Epidemiological Study Used by EPA to Assess Human Health Effects from Dioxins.” Read the memo at PureFood.org.

According to her memo:
Dr. Raymond Suskind at the University of Cincinnati was hired by Monsanto to study the workers at Monsanto’s Nitro, West Virginia plant. Dr. Suskind stated in published studies in question that chloracne, a skin condition was the prime indicator of high human dioxin exposures, and no other health effects would be observed in the absence of this condition. Unpublished studies by Suskind, however, indicate the fallacy of this statement. No workers except those having chloracne were ever examined by Suskind or included in his study. In other words, if no workers without chloracne were ever examined for other health effects, there is no basis for asserting that chloracne was “the hallmark of dioxin intoxication.”

These conclusions have been repeatedly utilized by EPA, the Veterans Administration, etc., to deny any causation by dioxin of health effects of exposed citizens, if these persons did not exhibit chloracne.
The results of Dr. Suskind’s studies also were diluted by the fact that the exposed group contained not only individuals having chloracne (a genuine, but not the only effect of dioxin exposure), but also all workers having any type of skin condition such as chemical rash. The workers could have had no or negligible dioxin exposures, but they were included in the study as part of the heavily exposed group. This fact was revealed only by the careful reading of the published Suskind study.
Further, Dr. Suskind utilized statistics on the skin conditions of workers compiled by a Monsanto clerical worker, without any independent verification.
Dr. Suskind also covered-up the documented neurological damage from dioxin exposures. At Workers Compensation hearings, Suskind denied that the workers experienced any neurological health effects. In the Kemner, et al. v. Monsanto proceedings, however, it was revealed that Suskind had in his possession at the time examinations of the workers by Monsanto’s physician, Dr. Nestman, documenting neurological health effects.
In his later published study, Dr. Suskind denied the continuing documented neurological health effects suffered by the workers, falsely stating that symptoms “had cleared.”
All of the Monsanto dioxin studies also suffer another fatal flaw. The purported “dioxin unexposed” control group was selected from other workers at the same Monsanto plant. An earlier court settlement revealed not only that these supposedly unexposed workers were exposed to dioxins, but also to other carcinogens. One of these carcinogens, para-amino biphenyl, was known by Monsanto to be a human carcinogen and it was also known that workers were heavily exposed.
Another Monsanto study involved independent medical examinations of surviving employees by Monsanto physicians. Several hundred former Monsanto employees were too ill to travel to participate in the study. Monsanto refused to use the attending physicians reports of the illness as part of their study, saying that it would introduce inconsistencies. Thus, any critically ill dioxin-exposed workers with cancers such as Non-Hodgkins lymphoma (associated with dioxin exposures), were conveniently excluded from the Monsanto study.
There are numerous other flaws in the Monsanto health studies. Each of these misrepresentations and falsifications always served to negate any conclusions of adverse health effects from dioxins.
Within days of learning that the Office of Enforcement had initiated a criminal investigation of Monsanto based on Jenkins’ allegations, her job duties were withdrawn without warning. She was not given any assignments from August 30, 1990 until she was reassigned on April 8, 1992 to a job which was primarily administrative or clerical.

According to a 1994 report on “EPA’s Phony Investigation of Monsanto,” by William Sanjour, Policy Analyst, US Environmental Protection Agency, published in Rachel’s Hazardous Waste News:

Dr. Jenkins filed a complaint with the Department of Labor claiming that she was being harassed for carrying out perfectly legal activities. The Labor Department investigated and found in Jenkins favor. The EPA appealed three times all the way up to the Secretary of Labor but each time the Department came down in favor of Jenkins finding that “None of the rationales [explaining her transfer] given by EPA … appear valid”.
In August of 1992, EPA quietly closed the criminal investigation without ever determining or even attempting to determine if the Monsanto studies were valid or invalid, let alone fraudulent. … There was no public announcement that the investigation was closed. Dr. Jenkins didn’t learn about it until fifteen months later. Yet Monsanto knew within a few days of EPA’s closing the case.
Why did Monsanto and the EPA go to such great lengths to hide the truth? It would have affected us all. EPA’s brief criminal investigation of Monsanto included evidence that Monsanto knowingly contaminated Lysol with dioxin, even as the product was being marketed for cleaning babies’ toys.

Dr. Jenkin’s memo also contained evidence that Lysol, a product made from Monsanto’s Santophen, was contaminated with dioxin with Monsanto’s knowledge. The manufacturer of Lysol was not told about the dioxin by Monsanto for fear of losing his business. Other companies using Santophen, who specifically asked about the presence of dioxin, were lied to by Monsanto.

This is just one example of why we can’t trust the EPA to stop Monsanto and Dow Chemical from poisoning us with dioxin.

EPA Declares Hay a ‘Pollutant’ To Intimidate Ranchers

Federal Jack, Nov. 6, 2011

During his presentation on the status of the nation’s new country-of-origin labeling (COOL) law, and on behalf of the R-CALF USA COOL Committee, R-CALF USA member and Kansas cattle feeder Mike Callicrate was asked a non-COOL question that set convention goers on their heels during the 12th Annual R-CALF USA Convention held August 26-27 in Rapid City, S.D.

“Has the Environmental Protection Agency declared hay a pollutant?” an audience member asked. Callicrate responded affirmatively and explained that the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recently initiated a formal enforcement action against his Kansas feedlot for, among other things, failure to store his hay in a pollution containment zone. “Now that EPA has declared hay a pollutant, every farmer and rancher that stores hay, or that leaves a broken hay bale in the field is potentially violating EPA rules and subject to an EPA enforcement action,” Callicrate said. “How far are we going to let this agency go before we stand up and do something about it?”

Callicrate said the EPA does not appear to be going after the corporate feedlots. “EPA is turning a blind eye toward the mega-feedlots that are a real risk for pollution and, instead, is antagonizing small to mid-sized family operations in an effort to help their packer-partners capture the entire live cattle supply chain away from family farm and ranch operations.”

Full story

Why Does FDA Tolerate More Radiation Than EPA?

Forbes Blog, Apr. 5, 2011

Since the Environmental Protection Agency began detecting radiation in rainwater and milk at levels above its maximum contaminant level, government officials have been downplaying the importance of EPA’s maximum contaminant level.

They would much prefer us to speak in terms of the Food and Drug Administration’s “Derived Intervention Level.”…

Officials from both agencies—as well as many state governments—explain the difference in terms of time: EPA assumes long-term exposure over 70 years. FDA assumes you’re encountering the radiation all at once.

But time isn’t the only difference between these two standards:

FDA tolerates a higher mortality rate.

Full story
Related:
FDA: Eating Fish With Radiation 2400% Above Federal Limits “Poses No Health Risks”
Radiation Found In San Francisco, CA Tap Water — Rainwater Radiation 18,100% Above Drinking Water Limit