It’s the Public Interest, Not the Corporate World’s, That Matters

By Clive Wakely. The European Union’s bias in favour purveyors and against the public interest with respect of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) is yet another reason why this country needs to quit that globalist steppingstone to world government.

Who can doubt that the EU’s policy with regards to environmental protection, public health, informed consumer choice and transparency, favours the international biotech industry?

This is something which is not surprising, considering the extent of lobbying undertaken at the behest of the producers by politicians (including diplomats) and the sums of money said to change hands.

Money, as they say, makes the world go round. “Brown envelopes” (or the globalist equivalent) makes the world go round that little bit faster, regardless of the consequences for either mankind or the environment.

Over the past few months, there has been increased conflict within the EU between those who seek to promote GMOs (on humanitarian grounds, you understand – we can’t let the Third World starve) and those who are determined that the precautionary principle be rigorous applied.

This site recently reported on both the anti-GMO pronouncements of one senior Polish politician and the European Court’s sensational (but commonsense) ruling requiring that GMO-contaminated honey be labelled as such.

As the GMO issue rises in prominence, it has required legislators to take a stand on the issue. Either they accept the international biotech industry’s line (that GMOs are good for mankind), or they side with commonsense and the anti-GMO lobby.

Generally speaking, up until now, the EU has favoured the corporate (largely American) interest over (European) public interest, justifying their decisions on the basis of advice proffered by “independent” leaned and expert bodies—which are often  funded by the international biotech industry corporations whose products are under evaluation.

The EU, apparently, sees no conflict of interest between those they engage to carry out GMO product evaluation and those elements of the international biotech industry that provide the funding. There have been a number of cases where scientists and laboratories who have expressed themselves in favour of GMO implementation, have been subsequently exposed as being in receipt of biotech industry funding.

It is also often claimed that the evaluation process lacks transparency (now that is something rare in the EU!) and as a result, the basis of all deliberations and findings are unverifiable.

Ultimately it is the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) that is responsible for taking a stance on potential GMO risks insofar as they relate to public health and the environment.

This body has always found in favour of the GMOs it has evaluated. This is perhaps not surprising when investigations and research have raised doubts concerning this body’s impartiality.

The EFSA’s current GMO licensing procedures actually frustrate (some prefer to use the word “prevents”) truly independent scientific community from verifying their conclusions.

Most alarming of all is that the EFSA has itself declared that it is incapable of evaluating the long-term environmental impact of GMOs.

How this licensing body can give the green light to a product on the basis that it appears to be safe, while simultaneously admitting that it has no idea as to what the long term impact may be, is as baffling as it is irresponsible.

This has proved good news for the international biotech industry, not least because of its previous declared refusal to accept culpability for any “unintended consequences” arising from the use of its products – a declaration that Washington, apparently, endorses.

Perhaps an even bigger indictment of the EFSA is its refusal, on occasion, to respond to appeals by national authorities to consider specific risks pertaining to GMOs.

However it is not all bad news.

In response to growing public anxiety over GMOs, a recent EU regulation gave member states the right to prohibit or limit their cultivation and dissemination.

Unfortunately this is a right that will undoubtedly be influenced by the strength of the relationship between legislators in individual EU-states and the pro-GMO lobby, as recently demonstrated in Bulgaria, where American diplomats were said to be involved.

As GMO pollution recognizes no national boundaries – GM pollen, after all, goes where the wind carries it – it is clear that there has to be a coherent and uniformly enforced EU-wide policy towards GMOs.

Until such times as the international biotech industry can prove beyond a shadow of a doubt that their products are at least environmentally neutral and pose no threat to public health, then they should not be licensed to be grown within the EU.

The first duty of all EU legislators is to the people they represent, particularly where public health is concerned.

To place corporate interest before public interest is not only a breach of trust but an act demonstrating the perpetrators’ unfitness for public office.

The covert and overt lobbying of the international biotech industry within the EU should be outlawed. Those out to enrich themselves at a potential cost to both the environment and public health, should be removed from public office.

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