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article imageOp-Ed: Ecologist turns pro GMO and turns on ‘anti science’ opponents

By Paul Wallis     Jan 3, 2013 in World
Sydney - British ecologist Mark Lynas has overturned years of his own work. From being strongly anti-GMO, he’s now in favour of GMOs as a benefit to the environment. The added, very ugly, twist here is that being anti-GMO is now equated to being anti-science.
Discovery Magazine has most of the story and a stunning supply of superficial comments attached, despite the fairly written coverage of Lynas’ departure from his own stated position.
For example, he sprinkles the “anti-science” term throughout, especially when referring to anti-GMO activists. Does it follow that someone who is anti-GMO must be anti-science? Such labeling might be hard to apply to groups like Greenpeace; the group is fiercely opposed to genetically modified crops and trafficks in all manner of junk science and alarmism to advance its anti-GMO agenda. But it also accepts the consensus on climate science and works to raise awareness about global warming. So is Greenpeace anti-science or pro-science?
That’s actually a pretty fair question, but the chorus of acceptance of anti-science as a description in the article comments was nauseating. Like politics, any opposition to technology is now left wing, anti-science, etc.
For those who don’t know or care, buzzwords rule in the Land of the Easy Terminologies. The term “anti-science” can be applied to those who complain about dangerous medications, dangerous foods, and anything else. The same way “left wing” is now a description of any disagreement with right wing dogma, anti-science can now be used as a term to denigrate opposing views. If you have the intellect of a comatose rock, that’s all you need to know to refuse to listen to dissent.
Add to this the laughable insularity of an academic structure which sits nestled in its claims to omniscience, and you have a fully-fledged media mechanism for convincing anyone that any damn thing is OK. The sadly educated lap this up. They learn by rote and get their opinions by rote. They never attempt to get their own information, just accept “sources” on face value. The sort of people who believe the financial industry is there for their benefit.
The “anti-science” label, obscene as it may be, has a much nastier side. It’s one thing for some “activist” (I’ve never heard of Lynas at all) to suddenly decide that non-generationally tested bio products are safe. So he doesn’t even understand basic biological system controls, related analyses or even the reason for generational testing. Lynas can be ignored easily on his merits.
But-he now has sudden access to MSM hailing him as a hero, as follows in
…His honest assessment of his heretofore poor understanding of the issue continues for almost 5,000 words—and it’s a must-read for anyone who has ever hesitated over conventional produce. To vilify GMOs is to be as anti-science as climate-change deniers, he says. To feed a growing world population (with an exploding middle class demanding more and better-quality food), we must take advantage of all the technology available to us, including GMOs. To insist on “natural” agriculture and livestock is to doom people to starvation, and there’s no logical reason to prefer the old ways, either. Moreover, the reason why big companies dominate the industry is that anti-GMO activists and policymakers have made it too difficult for small startups to enter the field.
Who needs GMOs? GMO sales people.
Who needs GMOs? GMO sales people.
Meaning Lynas doesn’t even know what’s going on in modern agriculture, but he’s being sold as a champion of the little guys while hanging on pitifully to some green credentials as a climate change advocate. This is pure PR. It reeks of market positioning. Expect to hear more about this flip-flopping corporate (unworthy of descriptor) in the near future to the point of being unable to avoid him.
He's also managed to leave out all other studies ever conducted on GMOs. Not bad for a 5000 word press release.
He’s wrong about agriculture, too. That also stinks highly of PR. Nobody who’s read anything in the last 20 years could imagine that the old rural production was even being considered for future needs. Old style agriculture is on the way out, in a big way. Only PR, trapped in an image of the public which hasn’t changed since 1950, still considers this garbage saleable to the market.
The new “natural” agriculture is far more efficient, fully science-based and can out-produce anything ever previously attempted. You can grow skyscrapers full of organic food. You can culture beef proteins without killing a single animal. There’s no need at all for GMOs to do either, but this enema/epiphany from some unknown neophyte is getting the publicity. As usual, MSM will simply try to shout down opposition.
The anti-science label, however, is dangerous. Those who’ve been involved in the debates will be aware that the depth and insanity of corporate pockets equate directly to the sheer gutlessness of many advocates of toxic “scientific” products. The science is babble, the spin is absurd, and the silence in the face of any problems is as predictable as it is deafening.
The message from the anti-GMO billions remains:
You say they’re safe. Prove it.
You want them. You eat them.
Just one more thing-
Take your “born-again GMO converts” with you.
Note for those interested: The Plantagon in Sweden is under construction and will begin production this year. See link to Greenhouse Canada for details.
This opinion article was written by an independent writer. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily intended to reflect those of
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