A Letter to Monsanto: The third letter I decided to send is to Monsanto. Now if you have ever eaten corn, you have eaten a Monsanto product. I’d put money on it. Now you’re probably wondering why I am bothering corn people. You’re probably sitting there saying “Dave, I really like corn. You probably hate America if you don’t like corn.” Well, I’m going to have to stop you there and get you refocused. This company is fucking crazy.
The Reason: There comes a point in every companies life where they have to decide: Do I exist to further the greater good or to make some serious money? Now as good as “Making serious money” sounds, nobody has done it with such reckless abandon as Monsanto. I can not think of another company that has made it so impressively clear that they do not care what happens, as long as their shareholders are happy. Like a father stealing food to feed his starving child, Monsanto has given the finger to the general well being and health of people all over the world. Why do I write thee? Let me count the ways:
- Became the first to genetically modify a plant cell in 1982. I guess that’s ok in itself, for research… but then they started patenting seeds.
- Bovine somatotropin (Growth hormone BST in your milk)
And now some bonus information! A list of public officials formerly employed by Monsanto!
- Justice Clarence Thomas worked as an attorney for Monsanto in the 1970s. Thomas wrote the majority opinion in the 2001 Supreme Court decision J. E. M. Ag Supply, Inc. v. Pioneer Hi-Bred International, Inc.|J. E. M. AG SUPPLY, INC. V. PIONEER HI-BREDINTERNATIONAL, INC. which found that “newly developed plant breeds are patentable under the general utility patent laws of the United States.” This case benefitted all companies which profit from genetically modified crops, of which Monsanto is one of the largest.
- Michael R. Taylor was an assistant to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) commissioner before he left to work for a law firm on gaining FDA approval of Monsanto’s artificial growth hormone in the 1980s. Taylor then became deputy commissioner of the FDA from 1991 to 1994. Taylor was later re-appointed to the FDA in August 2009 by PresidentBarack Obama.
- Dr. Michael A. Friedman was a deputy commissioner of the FDA before he was hired as a senior vice president of Monsanto.
- Linda J. Fisher was an assistant administrator at the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) before she was a vice president at Monsanto from 1995 – 2000. In 2001, Fisher became the deputy administrator of the EPA.
- Former Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld was chairman and chief executive officer of G. D. Searle & Co., which Monsanto purchased in 1985. Rumsfeld personally made at least $12 million USD from the transaction.