TOXIC ASPECTS OF AMERICAN LIFE
A LOOK AT TRANSPORTATION AND AGRICULTURE
How toxic is American life? It's a very big question and certainly not one that can be covered in one article.
But we thought we'd compare some aspects of American life to the technology used by Nazi Germany in the Holocaust for the mass murder of the Jews.
What gas did the Nazis originally use in their gas chambers? They used carbon monoxide, the gas coming out of the exhaust of almost all the automobiles in America and around the world. In other words, we have based our transportation system on a technology that generates the same gas used by the Nazis in their gas chambers. Carbon monoxide is one of the most deadly chemicals on earth. It's very hard to revive a person if they have had carbon monoxide poisoning.
The good news is that catalytic converters reduce this somewhat, but definitely did not eliminate it, and the carbon monoxide from cars remains an extremely deadly threat. So we thought we would just point that out.
But things get worse. Since carbon monoxide did not kill people fast enough, the Germans came up with Zyklon B. What is Zyklon B? Zyklon B was and is a pesticide.
Now the structure of modern pesticides is directly related to Zyklon B as are VX and other forms of nerve gases. Indeed the chemical connection between some pesticides and nerve gas is so close that many modern pesticide factories could be quickly converted to manufacture the chemicals for chemical warfare.
NATURE IS AN ENCLOSED SYSTEM
POISONS DO NOT DISAPPEAR
Here's a big problem. Nature is an enclosed system. If you generate something it goes somewhere. You can't just generate something toxic and throw it into the trash. There is no trash in nature, it's a self circulating system. So the carbon monoxide goes into the environment, the carbon monoxide goes into people. In the case of pesticides, the pesticides runoff into the water supply, runoff into the rivers and lakes and ultimately into the ocean. That's what they do. Indeed agricultural, agribusiness pollution is one of the most serious forms of water pollution around the world. That is a fact. Another aspect of pollution from agribusiness is the runoff from fertilizers which leads to the enormous dead zones at the end of great rivers around the world. So these things go somewhere. They don't disappear. Governments can't order them to disappear.
THE NEED FOR ELECTRIC CARS AND SAFER AGRICULTURE
So what this shows us is that we need to have a safer form of mass transportation. Electric cars need to be put in as government policy. In terms of agribusiness, we need to do a rethink of the green revolution so-called green revolution. Now we are not opposed to all pesticides and we're not going to get into a debate of which pesticide is good which pesticide is bad other than to say that we need to be paying much more attention to organic agriculture.
THE NEED FOR A CHANGE IN POLITICAL DIRECTION
In conclusion, we need to come down to a political point. Ronald Reagan claimed he loved the magic of the marketplace. The question is which marketplace was he talking about? Was he talking about some commercial marketplace or was he talking about the marketplace where powerful economic interests buy and sell politicians? Mr. Reagan is dead, and we are not able to ask him that question but we do need to point out that the marketplace for buying and selling politicians influences government policy. The fact that we have a transportation system that's based on toxic realities is a political decision. It's not an economic decision or scientific decision, and it will only be rectified by good political decisions. We need good political decisions instead of bad political decisions to change the incentives to use clean energy and the regulations. We're not going to get into the details but that's the basic point.
In the case of agriculture, the entire structure in the United States of agriculture is rigged towards industrial agriculture. The regulations are rigged against organic agriculture. That needs to change. Huge amounts of money need to be spent on looking into ways to make organic agriculture better. Huge amounts of money need to be spent to restructure the tax and regulatory incentives for organic agriculture. We want to point out that we are not against all forms of GMO's. If a GMO can be developed that requires less pesticide or less fertilizer or less water that is something we would be open to consider. Again, we want to emphasize we're not against all pesticides among other reasons for the fact that the world is so addicted to pesticides that you would have mass starvation if you instantly stop using pesticides. But we need to make a change. We need to go in that direction and that can only be done by political regulation, new political priorities. This is the way out. This is the constructive solution to build a better future.
Effects of vehicle pollution on human health (X-Engineer)
Nerve Gases and Pesticides: Links Are Close (New York Times)
“There is no disagreement among chemical warfare experts about whether a plant capable of making organophosphorous pesticides can also make nerve gas.”
Health Risks of Pesticides in Food (The Center for Ecogenetics and Environmental Health, University of Washington)
Exposure to glyphosate-based herbicides and risk for non-Hodgkin lymphoma: A meta-analysis and supporting evidence Mutation Research/Reviews in Mutation Research
“Commercial pesticides: Not as safe as they seem” (Science Daily)
How Dangerous Is Pesticide Drift? (Scientific American)
E.P.A. Opts Against Limits on Water Contaminant Tied to Fetal Damage (New York Times)
You eat thousands of bits of plastic every year (National Geographic)
Stronger Relationship Between Particulate Matter (PM) and Particulate Matter (PM) and (California Air Resources Board)