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Home country: USA
Member since: Thu Jul 26, 2007, 05:26 PM
Number of posts: 5,201
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Caveat: Gene splicing also know as genetic modification is a valid technology. However, the science is relatively new.
The technique has allowed a revolution in the medical, agriculture, research science, and other fields.
Corporate supporters understate the direct risks and overstate the benefits of genetic modification of food and material crops on a landscape scale. . The external risks to soil, genetic diversity, human society, etc. are understated or ignored. There are large short term financial rewards for manufacturers of gmo strains and corporate agriculture.
My perception is that there are shills at DU and elsewhere that seek to foster the idea that the questions attendant to corporate agriculture based upon gmos is a closed question when this is not in fact true.
Plant breeding is the art and science of changing the traits of plants in order to produce desired characteristics. Plant breeding can be accomplished through many different techniques ranging from simply selecting plants with desirable characteristics for propagation, to more complex molecular techniques (see cultigen and cultivar).
Plant breeding has been practiced for thousands of years, since near the beginning of human civilization. It is practiced worldwide by individuals such as gardeners and farmers, or by professional plant breeders employed by organizations such as government institutions, universities, crop-specific industry associations or research centers.
International development agencies believe that breeding new crops is important for ensuring food security by developing new varieties that are higher-yielding, resistant to pests and diseases, drought-resistant or regionally adapted to different environments and growing conditions.
Genetic engineering (gene modification)
Genetic engineering, also called genetic modification, is the direct manipulation of an organism's genome using biotechnology. It is a set of technologies used to change the genetic makeup of cells, including the transfer of genes within and across species boundaries to produce improved or novel organisms. New DNA may be inserted in the host genome by first isolating and copying the genetic material of interest using molecular cloning methods to generate a DNA sequence, or by synthesizing the DNA, and then inserting this construct into the host organism. Genes may be removed, or "knocked out", using a nuclease. Gene targeting is a different technique that uses homologous recombination to change an endogenous gene, and can be used to delete a gene, remove exons, add a gene, or introduce point mutations.
An organism that is generated through genetic engineering is considered to be a genetically modified organism (GMO). The first GMOs were bacteria generated in 1973 and GM mice in 1974. Insulin-producing bacteria were commercialized in 1982 and genetically modified food has been sold since 1994. GloFish, the first GMO designed as a pet, was first sold in the United States in December 2003.
Genetic engineering techniques have been applied in numerous fields including research, agriculture, industrial biotechnology, and medicine. Enzymes used in laundry detergent and medicines such as insulin and human growth hormone are now manufactured in GM cells, experimental GM cell lines and GM animals such as mice or zebrafish are being used for research purposes, and genetically modified crops have been commercialized.
Posted by PufPuf23 | Sun Mar 6, 2016, 07:14 PM (2 replies)
Fundamentalist thinking is magical and irrational thinking.
One can be "crazy" but never act "crazy" and maintain behavior within bounds of society, self-respect, and lack of harm to oneself or others.
Some of us are more predisposed to the "crazy" because of genetics and environment.
Fundamentalism, drugs, alcohol, cults in general, poverty, and physical, spiritual, or sexual abuse are paths that fertilize and activate the innate "crazy".
Hijabed, Allah Akbar, and beheading suggest that some strain of Islam had a part in forming the reality of this horrid woman.
Posted by PufPuf23 | Mon Feb 29, 2016, 03:49 PM (1 replies)
This is really quite strange because Charlie Rangel is a member of the Congressional Progressive Caucus. The CPC has 75 members in the House and one in the Senate, Bernie Sanders.
The CPC membership overlaps significantly with the Congressional Black Caucus.
Oh, and Bernie was a founding member of the CPC, along with Maxine Waters and Ron Dellums.
Surely Charlie Rangel (who’s my rep) knows this. So what is Rangel trying to say? That Bernie doesn’t have a national profile with black voters? I think that’s changing as we get deeper into the calendar.
Posted by PufPuf23 | Sat Feb 27, 2016, 03:56 PM (24 replies)
that your opinions are weak sauce for many that read DU regularly.
You appear not to like nor respect many of us here.
Sanders evidently cared and was involved in civil rights issues back in the 1960s.
For you to state that Sanders "trying to do it in a matter of weeks or months, and it's just not working" is two figments of your imagination that you state as "truth" when the statement is truthiness.
How can an admitted "outsider" even make such a generic declaration about the diversity that identify as black voters (or any identifiable social group)?
The Clintons long term trend against economic justice plays into the prejudice of those that gain and support institutional racism as their birthright.
You type propaganda, often not anything of particular value or information.
Most of us have votes that are earned or not earned over years of watching and living our political process.
I am white and never presume to speak for or read the minds of people that Identify as black but I do know that my votes and life attitudes and actions have evolved but have also been consistent in the over-riding idea that we are equal and deserve a fair society and that it is up to all of us to make that moral stance real.
Ron Dellums is one of my favorite politicians of all time. I first learned of him in high school when I lived in the East Bay Area and was anti-war during Vietnam. I voted for Dellums numerous times in the 1970s and 1980s. He is an anti-war social democrat like Sanders, not a neoliberal like the Clintons who support our military empire.
"By 1990, Sanders was a leading member of Jesse Jackson’s National Rainbow Coalition, and the following year he founded the Congressional Progressive Caucus with the help of fellow revolutionaries Ron Dellums and Maxine Waters."
What you stated about Sanders and the Black communities is not true.
Posted by PufPuf23 | Sat Feb 27, 2016, 03:50 PM (0 replies)
Dems voting for GWB and Liberman as VP nominee made the 2000 POTUS election close.
Voting irregularities, a bad act by the USSC, and failure to try much less stay the course by Gore the Democratic leadership gave the election to GWB.
That Nader canard is and always has been a weak excuse that says more about those that would opine such rather than reality.
Trump has the ability to make Hillary Clinton "lose it" in debate; not by policy substance but by his arrogance.
As a 1%, no doubt you are a neoliberal. The neoliberal and traditional liberal divide in the Democratic party is an issue to be solved as the political philosophies run counter except for issues of cultural and identity politics where neoliberals (such as Obama and the Clintons are as Machivellian as the neoconservatives, they just play to more educated and diverse groups). It may take an actual split in the party to solve the divide.
For the last 25 years the neoliberals in the Democratic party have ascended and have been hell bent on destroying the 20th century Democratic Party gains of the New Deal / Great Society while enhancing the power of concentrated capital and extending the global military and economic empire.
If "we" lose the 2016 election to Trump / GOP, the fault will lie solely in the lap of the neoliberal Democrats and the Democratic Party leadership that prematurely crowned Hillary Clinton the Democratic POTUS nominee.
Based upon voting history and stated policy, Sanders should be a walk-over within the Party versus Clinton.
I say this not because Bernie Sanders is my ideal candidate but that he has been the only one willing to step forward to slow the travesty of the Democratic leadership not doing a good job of representing most Democratic voters either legislatively or in getting Democrats into office.
If Clinton had not competed in 2016, we would have had a healthy range of Democratic candidates still weakened by the stranglehold of the neoliberals.
You are correct in that HRC is just a politician.
It sickens me and makes me angry to come on to DU and see the negative tones and smears. The source at DU is not GOP operatives.
Posted by PufPuf23 | Fri Feb 26, 2016, 10:03 AM (0 replies)
The following article I believe to be a concise analysis of what is happening in the Democratic Party regards to the competition for the Democratic nomination for POTUS and outcome of the 2016 POTUS election. Many of us want the Democratic Party to turn back to the FDR / LBJ social democracy from the right wing corporatism status quo.
Regards to Counterpunch as a source; Counterpunch is a forum that provides voice for various opinions, some I agree with and some I do not. I have read the site for years. This one of two articles ever published at Counterpunch by Gerald Sussman.
Why Hillary Clinton Spells Democratic Party Defeat
It is clear that the rig-the-vote wing of the Democratic Party, from Deborah Wasserman Schultz to the “liberal” commentators and regular pundits on MSNBC, PBS, and the most of the other mainstream media, is seriously weakening the party’s chances in November. Wasserman Schultz’s effort to brownout Bernie from the media through extremely limited debate exposure and her attempt, ultimately backfiring, to prevent his access to party voting data, together with the party establishment’s corrupt “super-delegates” system, are all part of a concerted attempt to kill his candidacy and the opportunity to bring about the most significant change in American politics since FDR. In doing so and in light of the party’s ownership by big capital, they have rendered the party name “Democrat” all but meaningless, as they stand against the tide of progressive domestic reforms that Bernie, and before him FDR and LBJ, represents.
Wall Street’s and the Democratic Party’s old guard preference, Hillary Clinton has high negative ratings both nationally as well as within the party itself. She rates 51% “unfavorable” nationally as of February 7, 2016, worse than the 32% negative opinion registered in September 2011 and the 45% registered a year ago. CBS News found last October that 14% of Democratic voters declared they wouldn’t vote for her, with another 27% expressing strong “reservations” about her, and those numbers are likely to increase with her nasty attacks on Sanders. In other words, her bid to seek the highest office in the land has only increased the public’s dislike for her over time. She registers particularly strong distaste among voters in key swing states, such as Pennsylvania, Ohio, Colorado, Florida, Virginia, and Iowa, that the Democratic Party has to win secure a presidential victory. The key attribute attached to her that attracts so much negative attention is her lack of “honesty” and “trustworthiness.”
It is obvious that Bernie’s powerful popular showing in Iowa and New Hampshire, with record turnouts, is the result of a groundswell of new voters that he has brought into the party, similar to what Jeremy Corbyn has done for the Labour Party in Britain, a leader also suffering under intrigues within the ranks. The more that the Hillary campaign, with Bill and Chelsea in tow, attacks Bernie, the more she alienates his supporters, especially the younger new voters, the slimmer the chances of a Democratic presidential win. This in turn will likely result in a stronger grip over the congressional seats by the Republicans, as weak turnout for the Democrats will spell Republican victories in the House and Senate. Bernie’s win, on the other hand, is dependent on very strong turnouts by Democratic voters. There’s good reason to think his strong showing so far will continue into the upcoming primaries and caucuses – and into the November election. A big turnout will likely sweep many Democrats into office, including the swing states noted above, and rebalance both houses in the Democrats’ favor.
The conclusion is that if Hillary and the party establishment wish to win the Fall election, it is incumbent on them to honor the one person-one vote basis of selecting the party leadership. This is in the interest of the Democrats, but most of all in the interest of the American people, who clearly are clamoring for radical change. The only question is whether this hoped for change will be seized by a right wing or a left wing leader. Hillary’s candidacy tips the power balance to the right. Bernie is here to restore the New Deal/Great Society, save the party, and protect the legitimacy of the political system, as FDR did, from the rapacious aspirations of the right wing and the hawkish foreign policy orientation of Mrs. Clinton and her White House boss that enormously contributed to the creation of ISIS. It is time for the Democratic establishment to step aside, open the forum, stop the winning-by-any-means shenanigans, and let the people decide.
Gerald Sussman is a Professor in the Toulan School of Urban Studies and Planning at Portland State University. He is the author of Branding Democracy: US Regime Change in Post-Soviet Eastern Europe.
Posted by PufPuf23 | Tue Feb 16, 2016, 10:55 AM (6 replies)
Reich's Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/RBReich/?fref=nf
My mole in the White House tells me Obama will nominate 46-year-old Judge Sri Srinivasan, an Indian-American jurist who Obama nominated in 2013 to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit -- and the Senate confirmed unanimously. Having confirmed him unanimously just three years ago, it would be difficult (but hardly impossible) for Republicans to oppose him now. (Twelve former Solicitors General, including Republican notables as Paul Clement and Kenneth Starr had endorsed his confirmation. Moreover, the D.C. Circuit has long been a Supreme Court farm team – Scalia himself, along with John Roberts, Clarence Thomas, and Ruth Bader Ginsburg were judges there before ascending to the Supreme Court.)
But is Srinivasan progressive? He had been Obama’s principal Deputy Solicitor General before the nomination, arguing Supreme Court cases in support of affirmative action and against Indiana’s restrictive voter ID law, for example. But this record doesn’t prove much. (Having once worked as an assistant Solicitor General, I know the inhabitants of that office will argue whatever halfway respectable arguments the Justice Department and, indirectly, the President, wants made.)
Before the Obama administration, Srinivasan worked for five years in George W. Bush’s Justice Department. Prior to that, as an attorney in the private firm of O'Melveny & Myers, he defended Exxon Mobil in a lawsuit brought by Indonesians who accused the company’s security forces of torture, murder, and other violations against their people; successfully represented a newspaper that fired its employees for unionizing; and defended Enron’s former CEO, Jeffrey Skilling, later convicted for financial fraud. But in these instances, too, it could be argued he was just representing clients. Another clue: After graduating Stanford Law School in 1995, Srinivasan clerked for two Republican-appointed jurists – Judge J. Harvie Wilkinson III, and Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor – both of whom were considered moderate.
Since he became a judge on the D.C. Circuit, he hasn’t tipped his hand. But I discovered one morsel of information that might interest you: In 2000, he worked on Al Gore’s legal team in the infamous Supreme Court case of “Bush v. Gore.”
One more paragraph at Facebook.
Sri Srinivasan has a relatively good chance at being confirmed, if nominated, because he was confirmed 97-0 by the Senate in 2013 to current federal judgeship.
Srinivasan appears to be moderate rather than liberal and has some prior professional work for the darkside.
Posted by PufPuf23 | Mon Feb 15, 2016, 12:07 AM (17 replies)
The group of leaders was on U.S. 395 bound for John Day, where they were scheduled to participate in an evening community meeting set up by local residents. A crowd of several hundred had gathered at the John Day Senior Center, who were subsequently told the "guest speakers" would not be appearing. Among those attending the meeting was Grant County Sheriff Glenn Palmer, who two weeks ago met with Payne and militant Jon Ritzheimer. He later publicly declared that Dwight Hammond Jr. and his son Steven should be freed from federal prison to help end the standoff. Palmer also has recommended that the FBI leave the Harney County scene and turn the matter to local police.
sedition defined: Conduct or speech inciting people to rebel against the authority of a state or monarch.
Posted by PufPuf23 | Tue Jan 26, 2016, 11:21 PM (6 replies)
This map is a graphic of current, historic, and capacity status of major California Reservoirs as of today.
I post because I like the presentation and the issue is important.
Note that the y-axis varies in scale from reservoir to reservoir.
The drought has also negatively impacted ground water storage.
Posted by PufPuf23 | Mon Jan 25, 2016, 03:20 PM (16 replies)
Here is a database of the 1195 killed by cop in the USA in 2015:
A recent article (note the bold for 2014 comparing civilian vs cop deaths):
As of Dec. 26, police had killed 1,186 people since the year 2015 began, according to the website killedbypolice.net, which lists all the victims’ names and links to news reports of their deaths.
The Washington Post puts the number of Americans shot dead by police in 2015 at 965, but the Post only included shootings that involved an on-duty police shooting to death a civilian. The Post reported 62 of the deaths occurred in the past 30 days.
The Post did not include people in police custody, fatal shootings by off-duty officers, or police killings that did not involve firearms.
Police killed more than 1,100 civilians in 2014. Twenty-seven police were killed in the line of duty that year.
This is a list of American police officers killed in the line of duty. The list includes only individuals whose deaths received significant local, national, or international attention, and is not an inclusive list of all such officers killed. Summaries of the overall casualty figures, by year, are also provided.
List at wiki link.
Out of 69 reported cops killed in line of duty for 2015 as of November 28, 2015, twenty-seven 27 were from gunfire and a majority of the cops killed were by heart attack or accident.
From 2010 to 2014 cops killed in line of duty ranged from 114 to 161 including killed by criminals and those killed by accident or heart attack.
The statistics are way out of line IMHO.
Posted by PufPuf23 | Thu Dec 31, 2015, 12:59 PM (0 replies)