Eric D. Nash said:
>I was interested 
in hearing from those involved in producing, regulatng, promoting, and 
protesting 'genetically modified organisms' whether or not the facts 
presented therein were accurate.  I personally hadn't heard about most of 
this stuff but I dont work in the field, or anywhere near it.  

>If some of the below statements are indeed true, why isnt there more 
foment about this on sannet and in the larger media world?

I am just a lowly organic farmer, but I have been very interested in this
technology, especially in the sociological aspects. Humans have been engaged
in genetic manipulation using selective breeding for thousands of years.
This process has led to the development of hundreds of useful plants and
animals, and many examples of species and varieties that could never survive
without human assistance.  I see DNA recombinant science as an extension of
this kind of human activity, although the transfer of genetic material
across species and families is a new and potentially dangerous twist.

I have always been fascinated by the direct manipulation of genetic
material: it is so much like playing God with the world.  The Creator may
have screwed up the world, but we humans with our puny intellects and
overweaning pride, can certainly fix it.  Now that's hubris for you!

I can see a dark side to this science, myopia compounded by greed, and it
gives me a really bad feeling.  The potential exists for disaster on a
global scale.  I am sorry to see that independent research is validating my
gut feelings.  I fear the worst is yet to come.  I do not believe that the
mass of humanity will wake up to the danger until some virulent plague is
unleashed on our crops, our livestock or ourselves.  The successes of GMO's
are widely publicised while the failures are covered up, denied,discounted
or buried.

Genetic manipulation is symptomatic of a particular world view, a conceptual
framework that excludes wholistic understanding.  This particular form of
mental illness can't be cured just by treating the symptoms.  The underlying
philosophy that supports this kind of science has to be dismantled.  That
will be an enormous undertaking.  People have to change their basic
assumptions about the nature of reality and embrace a new set of values, and
it has to be done one person at a time.  When a critical mass of converts to
wholistic thinking is reached, things will really change, and fast.

There are a lot of philosophical issues raised here:
1] What is the meaning of Life? If there was a 'United Nations' of species,
a global confederation of all lifeforms which governed the planet, would
humankind get more than one vote?  [It is not hard to see why cancer is a
dominant disease on earth at the present time: cancer occurs when the part
reproduces without regard for the welfare of the whole.]
2] Just because we CAN do something, does that mean we SHOULD do it?
3] What is the role of the sacred and the sanctified in biotech?
4] Who is benefiting from this technology?
5] Is anyone minding the store?

I agree that the time has come to say STOP! Go no further!

Jeff Gold.