To Jim Sampsel who might be deaf, blind and mute

Dear Jim Sampsel,

Forget the Viet Nam War–
too messy, too bloody, too…
and forget its legacy of pain,
physical and emotional trauma,
its psychological outburst.
This is not a poem,
but a work of describing
so let’s get on with it,
shall we.

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Dear Jim Sampsel,

Is this enough?
Do we need more?

Perhaps a link will assist you in your quest out of ignorance and gross stupidity. Agent Orange is an issue.
Deal with it. Please open the link below:

https://projectagentorange.wordpress.com/2015/07/18/why-i-cant-be-poetic-3/

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Posted in M. Lapin | Leave a comment

This is the Veteran’s Administration on Agent Orange

Among Jim Sampsel’s statements:

He said he believes Agent Orange contained “very, very small amounts” of dioxin, which was quickly destroyed by sunlight and the open air. “That’s not commonly acknowledged by advocates,” he said. Moreover, Sampsel said, United States planes did not spray it when American troops were in the area.

Sampsel pushed back against claims that veterans who served outside of Vietnam were exposed to Agent Orange. “When we get to outside of Vietnam, there’s a lot of controversy about Agent Orange use. And primarily it’s media hype, in my opinion.”

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Trumps VA: KEY VETERANS AFFAIRS OFFICIAL DOWNPLAYS THE RISKS OF AGENT ORANGE

A News Story by Charles Ornstein

At a meeting in March, a lead analyst in the VA’s compensation service was critical of the media, scientists, and the VA’s own administrative tribunal for taking positions that differ from his.

A key federal official who helps adjudicate claims by veterans who say they were exposed to Agent Orange has downplayed the risks of the chemical herbicide and questioned the findings of scientists, journalists, and even a federal administrative tribunal that conflict with his views.

Jim Sampsel, a lead analyst within the Department of Veterans Affairs’ compensation service, told a VA advisory committee in March that he believes much of the renewed attention to Agent Orange—used during the Vietnam War to kill brush and deny cover to enemy troops—is the result of media “hype” and “hysteria,” according to a transcript of the meeting released to ProPublica.

“When it comes to Agent Orange, the facts don’t always matter,” said Sampsel, himself a Vietnam veteran who also handles Gulf War-related illness questions. “So we have to deal with the law as written.”

Part of Sampsel’s job entails reviewing evidence to determine whether a veteran or group of veterans came in contact with Agent Orange outside of Vietnam. By law, veterans are presumed to have been exposed to Agent Orange if they served or stepped foot in Vietnam; they have to prove exposure if they served at sea or in another country during the war. They also must have a disease that the VA ties to exposure to the herbicide.

Read all of it here: https://psmag.com/news/key-veterans-affairs-official-downplays-the-risks-of-agent-orange

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Stop Monsanto

Scott Pruitt and the Trump administration’s Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) are now accepting public comments on their proposed reapproval of the pesticide, glyphosate, the active ingredient in Monsanto’s Roundup. If the EPA reapproves glyphosate, it will enable chemical companies to sell this toxic pesticide for another 15 years. Now’s your chance to tell EPA to restrict the use of this hazardous weedkiller!

Best known as the active ingredient in Monsanto’s Roundup, glyphosate is the chemical cornerstone of GMO-based agriculture. In fact, over the past two decades, Monsanto’s ubiquitous Roundup-resistant GMOs have made glyphosate the most-used pesticide in the history of the world. And that’s bad news for all of us.

Public Health

The world’s leading cancer authorities have classified glyphosate as a probable human carcinogen1. Farmers who use glyphosate are particularly at risk of getting the immune system cancer, non-Hodgkin lymphoma.
We are all encountering more glyphosate thanks to GMOs. EPA estimates that our exposure to glyphosate residue in foods has quadrupled over the past 25 years, with 1-2 year olds far more highly exposed than adults.
Endangered Species

Glyphosate poses an existential threat to monarch butterflies and their epic migration by wiping out their host plant, milkweed, from farm fields throughout the Midwest2.
Roundup is incredibly toxic to frogs, and is likely contributing to the worldwide decline in amphibians3.
Glyphosate and its breakdown product are regularly found in surface waters, air, rainfall and soils throughout the U.S.
Agriculture

Sprayed in large quantities on Roundup-resistant GMOs, glyphosate has become a leading culprit in drift-related injury to traditional crops not resistant to Roundup.
Glyphosate released from the roots of GMOs can harm beneficial soil bacteria and promote the growth of soil fungi that cause plant disease.
Overuse of glyphosate has also triggered an epidemic of glyphosate-resistant weeds, one of the greatest challenges for U.S. agriculture since the boil weevil. The industry’s response to these “superweeds” is to introduce “next generation” GMO crops that can be sprayed with additional pesticides to kill the glyphosate-resistant weeds, causing unprecedented damage to neighbors’ crops and wild plants4, a lose-lose proposition for farmers and the environment.

Despite these significant health, environmental, and agricultural consequences, EPA is poised to reapprove glyphosate for the next 15 years! Tell Scott Pruitt and the EPA how important it is to NOT approve glyphosate without serious restrictions needed to address its many threats!

Thanks for all you do,

The Center for Food Safety Team

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Why is the Bayer-Monsanto Merger Dangerous

The Center for Food Asfety

By now you’ve seen the ominous headlines: The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) just approved the merger of two chemical corporate giants, Monsanto and Bayer. With Bayer buying out Monsanto for $62.5 billion, this is the largest all-cash buy-out in history.

Why is this deal so dangerous?

This megamerger and others by transnational chemical companies signify an even greater effort to promote and push pesticide-dependent GMO crops around the world, and ever greater amounts of toxic pesticides on the market and in our food.

But the problems don’t stop there.The new chemical giant, Monsanto/Bayer, will own about 1/3 of all the world’s commercial seeds. They will have a virtual lock on vegetable seeds, own 3/4 of corn seeds and almost the same percentage of cotton seeds. Now only 10 companies own 73% of the entire world’s commercial seed supply.

This monopoly on seeds means that Monsanto/Bayer and these other mega-corporations can raise the prices of seeds at will, wreaking havoc on farm communities in the US and internationally. Moreover, Monsanto/Bayer gets to decide which seeds to make available to farmers, gardeners and the public. And since these corporations sell pesticides in addition to seeds, they will try to provide and promote only genetically engineered (GE) seeds to farmers, seeds designed to use Monsanto/Bayer brand pesticides, and make it difficult to find and purchase non-GE and organic seeds.

The result? Monsanto/Bayer controls our food supply! And because it’s pushing GE crops, this monopoly creates a massive reduction in seed diversity and availability of seeds around the world. This is especially tragic because we desperately need that seed diversity to have food security, decrease hunger, and deal with the changing agricultural conditions created by climate change.

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The Overview

A Poem by Stefanie Bennett

–After Monsanto & Dow Chemicals

Watching the storm
Roll up its sleeves
Above the serialized
Splash
Of an ever-onward
Changing tide

The Thunderbird
Dives For cover.

Posted in Stefanie Bennett | Leave a comment