Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Musings: As My Mama Used to Say

The state Legislature today will take up the topic of genetically engineered fish, considering a bill that would ban their cultivation, propagation or farming in state marine waters.

Though the Civil Beat editors displayed their bias in the headline — “No GMO Fish in Hawaii, Please” — reporter Chad Blair was even-handed in his brief coverage, noting:

HB 686 does not explain why GMO fish need to be banned from local waters.

That's because, as one commenter noted, “there isn't a good scientific reason. It's just a general fear of technology coupled with nostalgia for 'the good old days.'”

Guess sales of the cheesy chicks calendar haven't gone too well, as Babes Against Biotech admitted it doesn't have the dough to fund a fulltime fearmongerer lobbyist this year.

But no worries, since activism has always been second to self-promotion among the anti-GMO crowd. Which is why BAB's Nomi Carmona didn't post any testimony on the BAB Facebook page, just a selfie at the Capitol:
Uh, might wanna close your mouth before the flies get in, as my Mama used to say. Or as Mr. Rogers used to say, "Can you spell narcissist?" 

Nomi was very upset that Alicia Maluafiti, a woman who spends her free time and money rescuing abandoned animals, yet is nonetheless regularly maligned by the antis because she lobbies for Crop Life America, called out the anti-GMO movement in Hawaii for what it is: 

“Mainland activists trying to save us from ourselves” and “21st Century missionaries.”

Oh, such race-baiting, huffed Nomi, who hails from California. Nope. Just the truth. Which is why none of the anti-GMO groups can actually survive on local funding.

Alicia was testifying against HB 2564, which would establish a pilot project requiring certain agricultural entities to plant vegetative buffer zones around five as yet undesignated schools, one on each island. Though not Lanai, because apparently the activists don't give a shit about the keiki there.  

But then the bill goes on to specifically exempts treatments by termite companies.

So you can't spray ag pesticides in a field a mile from a school, but you can use pesticides directly on school grounds and buildings. But this is not about agriculture, it's about keiki health. OK, got it.

Speaking of keiki, Malia Chun – sister of Kauai Councilman Mason Chock and one of those suing to keep Bill 2491 alive – sent her mom to allege that Malia's kids are sick from pesticides. As "proof," she cited hair samples that showed exposure to 36 pesticides, eight of them restricted use.

Curious, I did a bit of research, and found this paper:

In order to identify associations between indoor air contamination and human exposure to pesticides, hair samples from 14 persons (9 adults and 5 children below 12 years) were collected simultaneously with the air of their 5 contrasted houses. Three houses were situated in Alsace (France), one in Lorraine (France) and one in Luxembourg (Luxembourg). Houses were located in urban (n=3), semi-urban (n=1) and rural areas (n=1). Twenty five (25) pesticides were detected at least once in indoor air samples and 20 pesticides were detected at least once in hair samples. The comparison between hair and air samples for the same sampling periods shows that pesticides detected in the two matrices were not necessarily associated. Exposure profiles varied from one home to another but also between inhabitants of the same home, suggesting that exposure can be different between inhabitants of the same home.

I hate to break it to folks, but pesticides are ubiquitous. You can pick them up even when you don't live anywhere near an agricultural field. Why, they're even found in — gasp — organic food. As Forbes reported, using the latest USDA-PDP (Pesticide Data Program) information as a source (emphasis in the original):

What that transparent source of tax payer-supported research indicates is that 40 different synthetic pesticide residues were detected on organic food samples at levels similar to what was seen for the comparable conventional food samples. In both cases the amounts are too small to be a health/safety concern.

For organic advocates and organic marketers this sort of information leaves one of two possibilities. They can agree with the EPA and other responsible agencies that consumers need not be concerned about the low-level pesticide residues found in either conventional and organic food. Alternatively they could choose not to believe those authorities and be forced to conclude that organic food is unsafe.

But then, that would require logic.

One of the things that irritates me most about the anti-GMO movement, especially now that it's broadening its message to include pesticides, is its total disconnect from the reality that many GM crops actually reduce pesticide use. This has been documented in Bt cotton, corn, brinjal (eggplant) and papaya.

Heck, even the anti-corporate spiel is turning out to be a crock, now that so many pure, altruistic, consumer-minded organic companies have opted for the big bucks and sold out to large corporations:
Yeah, that's the problem with the real world. Things just aren't so black-and-white, so cut-and-dried, as a Facebook meme. 


Anonymous said...

Nomi was a traveling evangelist previous to her arrival in Hawaii. And she has continued her evangelism though no longer about religion.

Anonymous said...

who said Malia sent her mom? Could it be mom did it on her own to speak in behalf of her grandchildren? We tutus will give up things and do things for our mo'opunas that others will not think important! You gotta think about buffer zones for schools and homes---why in the world were 9 faculty and 2 staff members at Waimea Canyon School stricken with cancer since 2000? Six have passed, 2 young teachers died of brain cancer! The school enrollment has been about 600 for many years. Please post this!!!!! And never mind about Nomi, let her do what she wants to do---you making fun of her puts YOU in a negative light!

Joan Conrow said...

So how many staff at other schools have gotten cancer? Throwing out a claim like that means nothing because cancer takes many years to develop and is caused by many factors. Besides, the state cancer stats showed west side cancer rates were not higher than elsewhere. And never you mind about me. I'm as free to do what I like as Nomi is.

Anonymous said...

Chlorpyrifos was found in air of Waimea Canyon Middle School.

Anonymous said...

Nice picture of Nomi. Joan you need to get a new one.

Joan Conrow said...

11:49 -- Yes, in minute quantities.

12:02 -- You're right, I do. But I won't be showing tongue. Because nobody really wants to see that, except the poseur.

Anonymous said...

For someone who purports to care so much about her health and the health of our communities, Nomi needs to walk the talk. NOMI CARMONA smokes cigarettes!!!! NOMI CARMONA drinks alcohol!!!! I have seen this with my own eyes. More than once.

Talk about toxic poisons that cause cancer and organ damage....

And I'm not making fun of her (even though she more than deserves it). Nomi and her followers fabricate stories, intentionally generate community fear and disharmony, are helping to bring about the downfall of real Hawaii agriculture and the jobs that go along with it, and use blatant sexuality to accomplish their mission.

Please girl, wake up; you're not stupid...put that brain and those breasts and legs to a better purpose. Get off the high horse, do some real learning about the issues you blab about, and work to find solutions and mend the communities that you so cavalierly have torn apart.

If nothing else, think about your legacy. You're an embarrassment.

Unknown said...

Ya, Lorsban (Chlorpyrifos) volatilizes really easy above 80 F. I'm surprised they don't use a product like Mustang Max instead. Zeta-cypermethrin*S-Cyano (3-phenoxy-
phenyl)methyl (+) cis/trans 3-(2,2-dichloro-
ethenyl)-2,2 dimethylcyclopropane carboxylate

Anonymous said...

On the contrary in Nomi Carmona's case, people who live in glass houses shouldn't throw rocks. Nomi is a big girl who has chosen to besmirch lots of other people. She is fair game for criticism on the basis of her public role, her utter lack of credibility and her spasms of disruptive and uncouth grandstanding behavior. It's certainly no secret that her mouth constantly outruns her mind. Her act might play well in LA and in ex-Councilman Tom Berg's office at the C&C of Honolulu, but it's an embarrassing, obnoxious farce, onstage overlong- not that she lacks for company in the cast of "progressive 'activists'".

Anonymous said...

How many days should pass before I can eat something sprayed with roundup?

Anonymous said...

It's water soluble. wash it off and it's fine.

Anonymous said...

This is very disturbing and Kauai should do a study on all teachers, faculty and staff to ensure that there isn't any unfair targeting.

Could have used the wasted 2491 money to do the study.

I am worried for the health of a few realives and students who were attending that school at the time of the toxic exposure.

I am also a person who has suffered from toxic exposure that has been covered up so I know if the Waimea canyon school incident is being covered up then they will all die before anything is done and if any at all.

Anonymous said...

I like State senator Will Espero.

Legislators seek more law enforcement oversight
Keoki Kerr
Feb 10, 2016 06:55 PM
HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Hawaii is the only state in the country without a statewide agency that sets standards and training requirements for law enforcement officers.

But that could change if one of two proposals before the state Legislature is approved this year.

Efforts to pass a statewide set of standards for police officers, deputy sheriffs and others have failed at the Legislature in recent years under opposition from the politically powerful police union and the Honolulu Police Department, which says its training standards meet or exceed those used by other states' standards agencies.

Some state lawmakers said recent examples of law enforcement misbehavior show a need for statewide standards.

In recent months:

A Honolulu police officer was sentenced to federal prison for a gambling room assault caught on video.
A state Department of Land and Natural Resources officer was charged with sexual assault. He had been hired by the state after being fired by the Honolulu Police department.
An HPD sergeant was fired for fighting with his girlfriend in public.
"It seems like in some cases, their standards and their training, they are failing," said State Sen. Will Espero, vice chairman of the Senate Public Safety Committee. "This will provide better oversight."

Espero introduced a bill signed by 16 other senators calling for creation of a state board that would develop standards and training requirements for any member of county or state law enforcement who carries a gun and wears a badge.

"That police officer in Kauai should just be as trained and qualified as the police officer on the Big Island," Espero said. "And it helps not only the departments and the agencies, but it builds the trust and faith in the public, which has been lost in the last few years."

State Sen. Laura Thielen's proposal would go further, allowing a state law enforcement standards board to certify all police, deputy sheriffs and others in the state and revoking an officer's certification for "serious misconduct."

"It's going to help the reputation and ultimately the morale for all the good officers that we have in the state," Thielen said.

"Rather than having a situation right now where it's internal only, without any type of transparency or public accountability, you would transition toward a higher-level process with a statewide standards board," Thielen added.

The Honolulu Police Department opposes both proposals.

"We believe that the HPD currently meets the highest standards possible for a law enforcement agency," said Major Gordon Shiraishi, who's in charge of the training division.

"We also have stringent procedures and guidelines for investigating police officers' misconduct and any determination resulting in discipline," Shiraishi said.

The Honolulu Police Department said its officers get more than 1,100 hours of initial recruit training, which he characterized as among the longest and most stringent police training in the country.

But Espero said the recent incidents involving officers show that something needs to change.

"With the news items which were just this week alone, one really questions what is going on with these officers? Who's in charge and where is the leadership?" he asked.

Espero was referring to two reports by Hawaii News Now on Monday that revealed more alleged wrongdoing at HPD.

In one case, an internal investigation has been launched into alleged cheating at the HPD Training Academy.

In another, records show an HPD officer gave a police sergeant accused of drunken driving a ride home in Kaneohe but only later when officers realized he was accused of crashing into a median with his car did the officers arrest him for driving drunk.

Copyright 2016 Hawaii News Now. All rights reserved.

Unknown said...

Oh, Nomi. Her screeds against me still remains posted. If you need proof of someone so deluded to think I'm only attacking her, get real. She will be held accountable for what she says. Thank goodness she dropped the hold on my domain name. The foreign dude funding her has probably decided to invest with Ashley instead.

Anonymous said...

Ya, new pic. Naommi's been showing us she's a good eater.

Anonymous said...

Nomi is just a distraction (Babes Against Biotech is too). Who knows she may be brilliant, but we need to let her grow into it. Posting a pic instead of her testimony just shows where her priorities are or she only posted it in privacy. Our complaint about BABS is that they don't represent our community. The Center For Food Safety and Ashley Lukens doesn't either. BABS is working with some other crazy love environment types to stop aquariu fishing when clearly the pound for pound of aquarium fish is nothing compared to fish we eat.
As for pesticides no one is ever happy. Companies are trying to work with communities and people. There is frustration on both sides.
People don't want companies spraying, companies stop and they mow it, dust gets complaints so they stop and let weeds grow, weeds stink and they find out it gives reactions similar to pesticides, but companies can't spray mow so what now? Burn? Burning down on western part of Kauai would cause fires. What is the solution? What do these people want? They ultimately want seed companies out. When they are out there will be another big company who can afford to lease or even buy. Buy it up and build hotels and apartments that would guarantee degrade the landscape and pollute the waters even more. Think twice. You want seed companies for more people on island? Can see the realtors just drooling and waiting!

Unknown said...

It depends on the crop. For wheat, barley, and oats: it's 14 days by the label. What longer if you encounter cool, cloudy weather. Since RR soybeans need to metabolize the Roundup, you need to wait 30 before harvest. Unless you spray them after they're mature, then it's 14 days. Corn can be spayed at brown silk, but can't be spray during pollination because the Roundup will kill the silks. Also, use drop nozzles after v6.

Anonymous said...

The Waimea kids are healthy. My family has gone to Kekaha Westside schools for 90 years. No cancer. As a matter of fact, all of them have been cheating Social Security for thirty years or more. All in their late 80s and 90s and the youngsters at 70 or so. Kukai ditches, mosquito fogs, paraquat And dust And Smoke so thick you could eat it. And then there were the rats and bugs that came form the cane when it was burned.

The real cancers are the skin cancers from too much sun...ask any local fair skin (including the NS transplant Fistees) and the old time Portagees.

JoAnn's Bus System on the westside is set up for these active old folks, all from Cane.

Let Nomi have her day in the sun. Pictures are great, she is attractive. The sweet flower of budding youth don't last that long. If she got it, let her show it. And she got it.

At the end of the day there won't be any money anyway. Big Ag will dwindle and the westside will become estate homes and great little beach cottages.
Teach yer kids how for sell real estate.

Anonymous said...

Joni why don't you admit you also have a paying gig with the Cornell Alliance for Science?

Joan Conrow said...

Why would she admit something that isn't true, 7:07?

Anonymous said...

The very first lie is the title of this organization; BABS being associated with "Babes". Now I have nothing against robust women, but to use the word "babe" to describe Nomi is a pretty big stretch. She's more apt to represent Krispy Kreme than an anti-biotech organization. No wonder the calendar sales have been slim ... because that's the only thing that's slim with this group. Maybe HAPA could be the acronym for Handsome (men) Against Pesticides and Agriculture featuring Gary Hooser on the calendar, or Gerard Depardieu if Da Hoos is too modest.

Anonymous said...

Give me a break Joan. It has been published by Cornell itself that Joni has accepted money from them and is enrolled in their program. Her and other Hawaii bloggers such as yourself are all part of their effort. You have admitted this in the past, why hide from it now?

Anonymous said...

I'll tell you how fast toxic chemicals work. One week I could see 300 meters and the next week I could barely see 250 meters and this is when I was 19 yrs old. Eye sight degraded in a week is a lifetime toxic concern.

Joan Conrow said...

Joni was enrolled in a 12-week Fellowship, during which she received a small stipend. That's over now. She doesn't get any money from them currently, and my work as a blogger is not now and has not ever been, funded by the Alliance, nor do they fund the work of any other Hawaii bloggers.

Unknown said...

Last numbers I looked at were 2007 and they said the big 4 seed companies had 4100 acres total, but employed 77% of the agricultural work force. Hawaii can't afford to lose the seed companies. All other sectors of Hawaii agriculture are declining at an annual rate of 0.7% a year. That number will take a huge jump with the last sugar plantation closing. People my not like the seed companies spraying by schools, but the alternative is the schools closing and kids getting bused to another town/school when/if they leave. Realtors may drool at the property, but they'll have fewer people to sell to without the seed companies.

Anonymous said...

2/11 @8:29 am, did you see an opthalmologist at the time? If so did they diagnose the cause as related to pesticides?

Anonymous said...

2/11 @8:29 am, did you see an opthalmologist at the time? If so did they diagnose the cause as related to pesticides?

Anonymous said...

I didn't because I was a young and naive soldier who wanted to better myself and not fall into the same cycle as the kids on Kauai do each and every year.

It's worst than pesticides and it was created by one of the big 5 Toxic chemical/biological companies.

Anonymous said...

It takes 7 - 14 days for Guinea grass to die after being sprayed. Better eat you something fast.

Anonymous said...

2/11 @ 9 AM do you believe the cause to be something other than pesticides, and where did this occur?

Anonymous said...

Where did pesticides come from? Where did GMO companies come from? Do you turncoats know the difference?

Agent Orange
For other uses, see Agent Orange (disambiguation).

U.S. Army Huey helicopter spraying Agent Orange over Vietnamese agricultural land.
Agent Orange—or Herbicide Orange (HO)—is one of the herbicides and defoliants used by the U.S. military as part of its herbicidal warfare program, Operation Ranch Hand,[1] during the Vietnam War from 1961 to 1971.[2] It was a mixture of equal parts of two herbicides, 2,4,5-T and 2,4-D.

During the late 1940s and 1950s, the US and British collaborated on development of herbicides with potential applications in warfare. Some of those products were brought to market as herbicides. The British were the first to employ herbicides and defoliants to destroy the crops, bushes, and trees of communist insurgents in Malaya during the Malayan Emergency. These operations laid the groundwork for the subsequent use of Agent Orange and other defoliant formulations by the US.[3]

In mid-1961, President Ngo Dinh Diem of South Vietnam asked the United States to conduct aerial herbicide spraying in his country. In August of that year, the South Vietnamese Air Force initiated herbicide operations with American help. But Diem's request launched a policy debate in the White House and the State and Defense Departments.[1] However, U.S. officials considered using it, pointing out that the British had already used herbicides and defoliants during the Malayan Emergency in the 1950s. In November 1961, President John F. Kennedy authorized the start of Operation Ranch Hand, the codename for the U.S. Air Force's herbicide program in Vietnam.

Agent Orange was manufactured for the U.S. Department of Defense primarily by Monsanto Corporation and Dow Chemical.[4]:6 It was given its name from the color of the orange-striped barrels in which it was shipped, and was by far the most widely used of the so-called "Rainbow Herbicides".[5] The 2,4,5-T used to produce Agent Orange was contaminated with 2,3,7,8-Tetrachlorodibenzodioxin (TCDD), an extremely toxic dioxin compound. In some areas, TCDD concentrations in soil and water were hundreds of times greater than the levels considered safe by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.[6][7]

In the absence of specific customary or positive international humanitarian law regarding herbicidal warfare, a draft convention, prepared by a Working Group set up within the Conference of the Committee on Disarmament (CCD), was submitted to the UN General Assembly in 1976. In that same year, the First Committee of the General Assembly decided to send the text of the draft convention to the General Assembly, which adopted Resolution 31/72 on December 10, 1976, with the text of the Convention attached as an annex thereto. The convention, namely the Environmental Modification Convention, was opened for signature and ratification on May 18, 1977, and entered into force in October 5, 1978. The convention prohibits the military or other hostile use of environmental modification techniques having widespread, long-lasting or severe effects. Many states do not regard this as a complete ban on the use of herbicides and defoliants in warfare but it does require case-by-case consideration.[8][9]

Although in the Geneva Disarmament Convention of 1978, Article 2(4) Protocol III to the weaponry convention has "The Jungle Exception", which prohibits states from attacking forests or jungles "except if such natural elements are used to cover, conceal or camouflage combatants or military objectives or are military objectives themselves" this voids any protection of any military or civilians from a napalm attack or something like agent Orange and is clear that it was designed to cater to situations like U.S. tactics in Vietnam. This clause has yet to be revised.[10]

Anonymous said...

2/11 @ 1:29 PM, what is your point? Do you think copying and pasting a large block of text makes it self-evident?

Unknown said...

Especially when the large block of words is word salad. My GASB before the end of the first paragraph where they talked about Monsanto being forced to produce agent orange for the federal government.

Anonymous said...

Why don't these toots in boots go after all the meth and heroin dealers in Kauai and the state of Hawaii.

That's the people and criminal organizations that killing the people of Kauai and the state of Hawaii.

Fuck the drug syndicates and anyone who supports them. Destroy all of them and their families.

Manawai said...

Agriculture is in bigger trouble than from a bunch of overweight "babes", the Tax Cheat Hooser or the misnamed CFS. Ag has to deal with State regulators and courts over the most important resource necessary for farming: water.

No wonder farms are struggling and going broke in this anti-everything State. Our local government speaks out of both sides of it's mouth when it says it wants to preserve agriculture yet gleefully dumps killing regulations on it.

Anonymous said...

"Agent Orange was manufactured for the U.S. Department of Defense primarily by Monsanto Corporation and Dow Chemical." It was put out for bids, and DOD purchased from several sources. The basic components of agent orange weren't the problem. It was a manufacturing byproduct - dioxin - that caused the problems. It took awhile to uncover the culprit byproduct. Which company and which batches had significant levels of dioxin was difficult to discover at such a late date. There were military units that handled and stored agent orange with no physical problems. It's not so black/white when delving into the actual situation.

Ultimately, the big companies paid big bucks without accepting fault. And why not since it was never proved who did what as the product wasn't tested for dioxin when received in different batches from different sources. I know people will argue this forever, but it remains true that agent orange properly manufactured was not the source of health problems. However, debate about the ethics of defoliation and/or poor quality control is certainly worth having.