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Daily Digest 7/30 - Survival Lessons from the Greek Crisis, The Colossal Hoax Of Organic Agriculture

Thursday, July 30, 2015, 9:16 AM

Economy

The Growing Threat to the Service Industry (Tiffany B.)

It seems that every day brings with it another fight against Uber. In numerous instances, lawmakers are legislating against the taxi-replacement company. They’re doing so to protect vocal taxi drivers who are demonstrating violently against Uber because they feel threatened that the app-based service is simply better and more efficient … and because government realizes that it risks losing control over parts of public policy.

It shows the economic ignorance of the power base. Politicians are trying to legislate winners instead of allowing the free market to determine the best business model. That never works out well for an economy because it lards the system with unnecessary rules and roadblocks that always have unintended consequences.

20 Survival Lessons from the Greek Crisis (pinecarr)

Ferfal identifies "Lessons Learned" from the Greek Crisis that parallel his experience surviving the crisis in Argentina.

Human domination of the biosphere: Rapid discharge of the earth-space battery foretells the future of humankind (pinecarr)

It took hundreds of millions of years for photosynthetic plants to trickle-charge the battery, gradually converting diffuse low-quality solar energy to high-quality chemical energy stored temporarily in the form of living biomass and more lastingly in the form of fossil fuels: oil, gas, and coal. In just the last few centuries—an evolutionary blink of an eye—human energy use to fuel the rise of civilization and the modern industrial-technological-informational society has discharged the earth-space battery.

Ron Paul Slams Gen. Wesley Clark: Is He Kidding, Internment Camps? (pinecarr)

Retired Army Gen. Mike Flynn, who was head of the Defense Intelligence Agency during the US wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, told al-Jazeera this week that US drones create more terrorists than they kill. He said: “The more weapons we give, the more bombs we drop, that just...fuels the conflict.”

Still Washington pursues the same strategy while expecting different results.

Battered Coal Industry Still Boasts A Few Good Opportunities (Tom K.)

U.S. investors looking to benefit from this trend can play the story a few ways. Certainly U.S. coal companies could see some benefits, but unfortunately those benefits will probably be small. It costs a lot to ship coal, and it’s not clear the U.S. has a sustainable advantage in producing coal for Asian use.

Investors could also look to invest in major manufacturers like Emerson which sell equipment to coal-fired power plants. Those revenues are relatively small in comparison to the size of the firms though.

Water mafia: Why Delhi is buying water on the black market (westcoastjan)

Young men charge towards the truck, clambering onto the top with pipes, which are then lowered into the tank. Others push the drums in place - there's a mad scramble to fill them up with clean water.

Fights break out as some people are pushed out of the way.

Sandorkraut: About A Pickle Maker (Arthur Robey)

Since the beginning of time, humans have been fermenting our food. Sauerkraut, chocolate, beer, cheese: Because of fermentation these foods not only last longer — they are delicious. But although nearly every region of the world has cultivated its own unique fermentation traditions — and devoted eaters — the practice has all but disappeared from many modern households.

The Colossal Hoax Of Organic Agriculture (LesPhelps)

Organic certification is process-based. That is, certifying agents attest to the ability of organic operations to follow a set of production standards and practices which meet the requirements of the Organic Foods Production Act of 1990 and the [National Organic Program] regulations . . . If all aspects of the organic production or handling process were followed correctly, then the presence of detectable residue from a genetically modified organism alone does not constitute a violation of this regulation.

Gold & Silver

Click to read the PM Daily Market Commentary: 7/29/15

Provided daily by the Peak Prosperity Gold & Silver Group

Article suggestions for the Daily Digest can be sent to [email protected]. All suggestions are filtered by the Daily Digest team and preference is given to those that are in alignment with the message of the Crash Course and the "3 Es."

9 Comments

saxplayer00o1's picture
saxplayer00o1
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DennisC's picture
DennisC
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Earth-Space Battery

Thanks for that great link in today's Daily Digest.  Coincidently, and in a similar vein, JMG has a great post (IMO) this week on The Archdruid Report blog.  The recent topic has been the rise and fall of civilizations.  Ever since being introduced to JMG on this site, I've become a regular reader of his blog.  From July 29th (http://thearchdruidreport.blogspot.ch/) :

The world’s fossil fuel reserves aren’t renewable on any time scale that matters to human beings. Since we’ve burnt all the easily accessible coal, oil, and natural gas on the planet, and are working our way through the stuff that’s difficult to get even with today’s baroque and energy-intensive technologies, the world’s first fossil-fueled human civilization is guaranteed to be its last as well. That means that once the deindustrial dark age ahead of us is over, and conditions favorable for the revival of civilization recur here and there on various corners of the planet, it’s a safe bet that new civilizations will build atop the ruins we’ve left for them.

gallantfarms's picture
gallantfarms
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Organic Food
The masterful propaganda of the organic agriculture article above really raises my blood pressure!  For a little perspective, I suggest reading the following article from mercola.com:  
 

http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2014/07/29/organic-fo...

Plus this one:

 

http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2013/04/30/monsanto-g...

 

  • A 2012 nutritional analysis of GMO versus non-GMO corn shows shocking differences in nutritional content. Non-GMO corn contains 437 times more calcium, 56 times more magnesium, and 7 times more manganese than GMO corn
  • GMO corn was also found to contain 13 ppm of glyphosate, compared to zero in non-GMO corn. EPA “safe” level for glyphosate in American water supplies is 0.7 ppm, and organ damage in animals has occurred at levels as low as 0.1 ppm
  • GMO corn contains extremely high levels of formaldehyde—about 200 times the amount found toxic to animals
  • Research by a Texas teenager using fruit flies, which began when she was in middle school, shows that in virtually every health measure, including fertility, stress resistance and longevity, flies that fed on organic bananas and potatoes fared better than those who fed on conventionally raised produce. Her research was recently published in a respected science journal
We are all participating in a giant experiment with GMOs.  By the time we know the true cost there will be no fixing it.  There is no true way to "opt out" because they CANNOT CONTROL THE POLLEN!  In the mean time the only way to even hope to reduce exposure is to buy organic or grow your own.
ezlxq1949's picture
ezlxq1949
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Organic Food

Organic agriculture a hoax? That’s one opinion. There are plenty of scientifically-derived and valid alternative opinions. From an Earth Open Source report:

“GM crops are not about feeding the world but about patented ownership of the food supply”

These reports have abundant citations of peer-reviewed journal articles. The bold text statement above from the short report is a message commonly heard for the past decade at least. More than a few separate sources are sending the same message which to me more than suggests that the pro-GM message is open to challenge.

See the full report at:

http://earthopensource.org/earth-open-source-reports/gmo-myths-and-truth...

and a short report at

http://earthopensource.org/earth-open-source-reports/10-reasons-we-dont-...

Soils are the foundation of life on earth. An abundant and diverse soil biology (e.g. mycelia, earthworms, weeds) ensures that under all circumstances there are beneficial species active to undertake any task to feed and protect plants. Symbiosis is this balanced, mutual interdependence of different species. It is a protective mechanism in nature that develops in response to compatible needs. Such systems run on carbon, water and nitrogen, all provided free from nature. Continuous use of synthetic fertilisers and chemicals affects life in the soil. In fact, conventional agriculture is a form of aquaponics, treating the soil as only a medium for holding chemical solutions to feed plant roots. A healthy, living soil is self-organising and endeavours to optimise plant growth by making plants more resistant to diseases and insects, and less susceptible to environmental conditions, while achieving nutrient-dense produce.

Science, academia and governments are influenced by multinational corporations and stick to current industrial agriculture and food processing. Current powers effectively sideline critics and maintain the delusion of control of the natural world.

Yields have not increased with GM and pesticide use has risen to combat problems of resistance. Herbicide use has increased and glyphosate hazards (e.g. its alleged carcinogenic properties) to humans, animals, crops and soils are being made apparent by the critics. New weeds, diseases and pests keep appearing that need chemical control (e.g. superweeds).

Organic food is produced in complex biological systems characterised by symbiosis and interdependence, resulting in synergies which are difficult to quantify with current scientific methodologies and mentality. Some scientific evidence has been published; for example The Organic Center (USA) on the state of science reviews on nutritional superiority and pesticide risk.

https:// www.organic-center.org/scientific-resources/publication-archive/

Organic critics have often referenced two meta-analyses showing up to a 25 percent yield gap between organic and conventional agriculture.

http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v485/n7397/full/nature11069.html

However, a 2014 study from the U.C Berkeley concludes that “based on robust analysis of a larger meta-dataset, [their results] suggest that appropriate investment in agroecological research to improve organic management systems could greatly reduce or eliminate the yield gap for some crops or regions.”

http://rspb.royalsocietypublishing.org/content/282/1799/20141396

At the moment we seem to need both forms of agriculture: conventional and organic.

But later on, then what? As Al Bartlett put it, conventional agriculture is the use of land to turn petroleum into food. We haven’t even touched upon the role, cost and future of fossil fuel inputs into conventional agriculture.

ezlxq1949's picture
ezlxq1949
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Posts: 174
Oragnic Food

Two more thoughts.

1. The best form of agriculture is neither "conventional/industrial" or "organic" or even "sustainable". Whatever form of agriculture we use, above all it needs to be regenerative. Organic ag tries to be regenerative but it is possible to follow all the organic rules and still not be regenerative: it is entirely possible to have an organic rule-based monoculture needing external inputs (e.g. manure) to sustain it. Even so, most organic ag still tries to tend for and (re)build the soil. The desideratum is that a regenerative farm needs no inputs other than what nature provides. I find it very hard to view conventional, monocultural, land-aquaponic ag as regenerative. Permaculture is probably the best manifestation of a regenerative system. To get a regenerative ag system going means you're co-operating with nature and can continue to practice it into the far future.

2. It may not be an utter disaster to let GM genes out into the biosphere. Natural selection has a strong tendency to eliminate harmful mutations, so a GM plant containing, say, fish genes, may be quickly identified as harmful and removed from the pool. I don't know if anyone has yet devised experiments on this.

 

LesPhelps's picture
LesPhelps
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Organic Food

I got something entirely different out of the article.  Basically, a lot of what is sold as organic, simply isn't organic.

Why should that surprise anyone?

If I buy organic food at a local farmers market, I feel a lot more comfortable about the source of the food than I do about organic food I source from a national food chain.

It's just common sense.  If you buy factory farm output and package it as organic, the margin is high.  You have to know that sort of thing goes on in today's corporate world.

It's another incentive to buy locally.

 

 

 

robie robinson's picture
robie robinson
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Posts: 1148
there are those for whom the long emergency

will have less effect:

http://m.sevendaysvt.com/vermont/timber-harvesting-with-horsepower/Conte...

better get your mare settled

cmartenson's picture
cmartenson
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Posts: 5569
Organic hoax...

Typical Forbes article...unless eating organic is all about ME!, always and ever about ME!, and MY health and MY well-being then it's not worth considering.

One could eat organic because one simply does not want to contribute to the misuse and overuse of neonicotinoid pesticides, excuse me, biocides.

Or one could care about soil health and structure.  Of species diversity.  Or your local farmer who grows things in ways that support the things you care about.

That is, a big a part of organic is because you care about things outside of yourself.  Of course, for Forbes, which of by and for the ME! generation and is therefore highly narcissistic and self-absorbed, none of that even remotely enters into the equation.

But even if you only care about ME!, there are numerous articles and studies to support the idea that it is indeed more nutritious and less burdened with known toxins than conventional industrially produced foods, GMO or not.

But when you are a co-opted American media company with advertising dollars to consider, well, it's not hard to understand which way such an ""article"" will slant.

Shoddy "journalism" which is really nothing more than re-scribing Monsanto talking point PR releases is enormously popular right now, and I suspect that the scribes even think they are somehow in the right because they hold the center-mass approved view.  No doubt this same author's output 400 years ago would have read, "Heliocentrism Is A Giant Hoax" and felt just as smugly superior then as he does now.

Arthur Robey's picture
Arthur Robey
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
Joined: Feb 4 2010
Posts: 3936
Controling the message.

Facebook censorship for a very big company.  

Corporations are people too you know.  

And here comes the TPP!  Britain OKs Neonics.  

Just sign.

http://action.sumofus.org/a/neonics-uk/

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