Many people are fond of believing that somewhere out there in the vast expanses of the universe there is intelligent life. Because frankly, and to quote Monty Python – there’s bugger all down here on earth.
If you think that’s a bit harsh consider the news just in. The Australian Fruit Growers Industry body or someone bearing a striking likeness has rejected calls that we stop spraying a particularly toxic poison on our fruit & veg even though it’s been banned in Europe, Canada and most other countries of the developed world. And why do they want to keep spraying this stuff on our food? Yep, you guessed it. There are some people making money out of it. If they stop spraying, some people will lose money. People who grow fruit and veg.
Strangely this is entirely understandable. The big ugly food retailers like Coles and Woolies have been so good at thoroughly screwing the growers over the years that the only way these growers can compete is to produce their food at lower and lower prices. And that means spraying them with poisonous presticides that cause liver, brain, panctreatic, breast and prostate cancer. And that’s just for starters.
How is it that everything we do these days seems to come to rest at a place where it’s OK to sacrifice the health, welfare, safety and sanity of our citizenry for cash and votes? The short simple answer of course is greed. The complicated higly structured answer is greed combined with technology. It’s greed Jim but not as we know it. Greed with a spreadsheet. It’s greed with a spreasheet AND genetically engineered plastic vegetables. Yum Tum-tum, i can’t wait. Sweet in the mouth and bitter in the belly. Dear Christ it’s biblical.
We have here what is known as a diabolical dilemma. Diabolical meaning literally of the devil. It’s diabolical because inevitably when you let greed be your guiding value you get to a place where regardless of what you do there will be unfortunate repercussions. Either someone’s going to lose money or . . . soemone’s going to die of cancer. Gee what to do? The way things are and have been if a food grower loses money that could mean they lose their farm. I mean people are balancing on the edge aren’t they? Struggling to keep afloat? Well some are. I have a feeling that mostly it’s the small guys who are struggling. And it’s a miracle that there are any small guys left.
The agribusiness model (big business agriculture) fits neatly in with the Big Chain Supermarket model. Too big to be able to care about people, too big to be able to change quickly. Oh my God I can’t look. These industrial models are all about BIG scale operations. Lot’s of genetically engineered seeds and foods. Lot’s of chemical fertilizers to make things grow and lots of poisonous pesticides to kill the bugs. These BIG monoculture crops are just acre on acre of the same thing. Which means pests can breed up because there is no ecological web of life to keep the balance. You gotta do this if you’re going to herd people into BIG cities don’t you? I mean people by and large don’t want to get their hands dirty growing . . .food? How very provincial my dear.
One thing to bear in mind is this: When all ideas and ideals of of providing a product with any kind of ethical value and regard for life have been lost and the living things of the land are farmed and sold with profit as the only guiding motive, inevitably what gets farmed is us. You & me. Be afraid, be very afraid. And at the moment we the sheeple are going meekly to the slaughter.