Don't Worry About Genetically Modified Foods, Just Trust Us!
Don’t worry your little heads over the gene-spliced foods on your plates. Just trust companies like Monsanto when they tell you their genetically modified organisms (GMOs) are perfectly safe.
That’s the upshot of a new website created on behalf of the biotech industry by GMO advocates Bruce Chassy and David Tribe. They offer priceless examples of distortion, denial, and spin. Their site is yet another example of why we can’t trust GMOs, Monsanto, or the so-called scientists who support them.
Bill Deagle from Nutrimedical discusses reproductive and other dangers
of GMO foods with world renown GMO researcher and author
of Deception, Jeffrey
In a series of rebuttals, Jeffrey Smith exposed the charade to show why healthy eating starts with no GMOs. (To find out how to avoid GMOs, go to NonGMOShoppingGuide.com.)
In Part 1, he recounted the story of scientist-turned-whistleblower Dr. Arpad Pusztai. He provided a point by point refutation of Chassy and Tribe’s unwarranted attack on Dr. Pusztai and their distortion of his findings.
Exposing the Spin on Spuds
1. Experts say no scientific conclusion can be made from the work. Two separate expert panels reviewed this research and concluded that both the experimental design and conduct of the experiments were fatally flawed, and that no scientific conclusion should be drawn from the work. (Royal Society 1999; Fedoroff and Brown 2004)
Dr. Pusztai’s research design had already been used in over 50 peer-reviewed published studies conducted at the Rowett Institute, the most prestigious nutritional institute in the UK. Furthermore, the design was explicitly approved in advance by the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC)—the UK government’s main funding body for the biological sciences.
The validity of the work was also confirmed by an independent team of 23 top scientists from around the world who reviewed the research, as well as The Lancet, that published it.
But Chassy and Tribe instead reference their partners-in-spin from the Royal Society. As indicated in Part 1, at the Society there are plenty of scientists with close ties to the biotech industry who came in quite handy during the Pusztai affair. They staged a so-called peer-review—the first in the Society’s 350-year history—but it was more of a hatchet job. The reviewers didn’t even bother to look at all the research data.
The editor of The Lancet, Richard Horton, denounced the Royal Society’s unprecedented condemnation of Dr. Pusztai as “a gesture of breathtaking impertinence to the Rowett Institute scientists who should be judged only on the full and final publication of their work.” He called it a “reckless decision” that abandoned “the principles of due process”.
The team that the Royal Society assembled to do the review was telling. They had publicly announced that anyone who had previously commented on the Pusztai situation would be excluded to avoid bias, but then went ahead and included four people who had previously co-signed a letter condemning Dr. Pusztai. In addition, several members had financial ties to biotech companies, and four were co-producers of the Royal Society’s controversial 1998 pro-GMO report that called for the rapid introduction of GM foods. The Royal Society also abandoned the normal protocols of choosing a review team with specific scientific qualifications to evaluate the study in question. Their members clearly did not have the relevant experience to review such a nutritional study.
It came as no surprise that the Royal Society’s partial review denounced the findings. Furthermore, it made sweeping claims that actually contradicted the study’s design and data.
The coordinator of the review, Rebecca Bowden, later headed the Royal Society’s science policy division, which, according to The Guardian, “is to mould scientific and public opinion with a pro-biotech line,” and to “counter opposing scientists and environmental groups.”
Chassy and Tribe also name Fedoroff and Brown as the second so-called expert panel. They weren’t a panel at all; they wrote a book, Mendel in the Kitchen, a devotional ode to biotech. According to a review in Nature, “It is the things they choose not to include, and the inclusion of some sweeping generalizations, that give the book its decidedly pro-genetic-engineering slant. . . . Although the authors state in their introductory chapter, ‘Which view will seem right to you depends on what you consider conventional, and on how you define the ways of nature,’ the rest of the book attempts to convince readers that only one view is right.”