Today I will be focusing on a piece written by Mark Ruffalo of (I assume) Ecowatch. It is about his recent encounter with the man (Monsanto CEO) at an interview.
First of all, to start this off on a note of amusement (at least to me), the fellow in question’s (Monsanto CEO) name is Hugh Grant. Not the actor.
But moving on, lets get into the article.
He came through the Green Room door ready to do high fives with his press agent and I simply told him this:
“You are wrong. You are engaged in monopolizing food. You are poisoning people. You are killing small farms. You are killing bees. What you are doing is dead wrong.”
Im sure that Hugh has never been faced with this kind of reaction from ignorant activists and pseudo reporters before.
A bead of sweat broke out on his head. “Well, what I think we are doing is good,” Grant replied.
“I am sure you do,” I told him.
When people get paid the kind of money he gets paid their thinking becomes incredibly clouded and the first thing to go is their morality.
And here it comes. The high horse.
He says Monsanto needs to do a better job with their messaging.
Hugh, it’s not your messaging that makes you and your company horrible. It’s the horrible stuff you guys do that makes you and your company horrible. People don’t walk around making horrible stories up about good companies because they got nothing else better to do with their time. People like you and your company are horrible because … you are horrible. No matter how much jumping around you do on morning shows (where no one can really nail you down for the horrible stuff you do), you will still always be horrible and people will always greet you the way I did, when you go around trying to cover up the fact that you are horrible.
This will have to be broken down.
1.) I agree that Monsanto (and other companies and organizations like it) need to try and do a better job with education of their practices. Because in the age of social media ignorance and at times flat out misinformation, NOT providing good counter narratives is not just bad for business, its bad for the science itself. When this is science that helps research how to better feed a growing population on an increasingly hostile planetary environment, everybody looses.
2.) Some people DO walk around saying falsely horrible things about companies. Many of the documentary’s on the company that one is likely to encounter on Netflix or Youtube (often of which turn their viewers into activists, by design) are built on this. The cries about lawsuits against poor farmers, crushed by a Goliath. Even though they broke contract, and all of the proceeds of said suits go to charity.
Then there are those that lie about the Indian suicide epidemic.
There is PLENTY of bullshit to go around.
Also, why are we framing this in a “Good vs evil” manor?
“People don’t walk around making horrible stories up about good companies because they got nothing else better to do with their time.
I do not deal in emotional arguments. I deal in facts. I do not walk around with the assumption that those in this position are automatically good, while others in another are automatically evil. I deal in agendas (what is the backstory?).
People that walk around with the preconceived notion that is “Big biotech = EVIL, Little Farmer = Good” are dangerously gullible.
First of all, as far as I am concerned, there is no such thing as a good corporation. They exist to enrich their shareholders.
This does not mean they can not Do good in the world, or use their status and resources to work on solutions to big problems of the species. However, they are just entities. Imaginary money making entities of human design and creation.
On a side note, this is why I do not swoon over Google, Apple, Facebook or other so called progressive companies. Its all about the bottom line, and its made abundantly clear should you choose to look.
But why would you do that when you can watch “The Social Network” or “Steve Jobs”?
Just as being an unthinking fanboy to a company can blind you to things like forced device obsolescence and manufacturer only parts replacements (and many others), being an unthinking hater of a company can blind you to manipulation utilizing that hatred.
For example, manipulation by farmers that came out on the butt end of a lawsuit of their own making (breach of contract!), yet whom see an opportunity to not only kick the company back, but possibly even make it financially beneficial.
After all, were talking about David vs Goliath. If Goliath went and sued David for libel (or whatever the applicable law), then that’s just playing into the conspiracy.
See how differently these things can look when you don’t at things exclusively from a Good vs Evil, Us Vs Them perspective?
3.) Though containing a great many words, one thing that is lacking of this entire paragraph, is substance. The jist could have been summarized by “You and your company are horrible, no matter how you try and spin it!”.
All I see in this paragraph, is elementary school level tactics. Replace horrible with poopyhead, and I would be fooled.
Moving on in the article, there is a youtube video in which the auther recomends you watch to learn more. Feel free if you want, but I am not linking it here, since it seems to be just propaganda.
The article is concluded by linking and making mention of a number of past Monsanto lawsuits and scandals, including the WHO’s labeling of glyphosate as a “Probable Human Carcinogen”. I played around with this story some time ago by looking into other probable carcinogens we may come across in daily life.
To close, if you view this post as a defence of Monsanto, your an idiot. The various lawsuits against the company do not really surprise me. Corporation’s have a purpose. What I do not do, is let this knowledge blind me.
While this little article may applauded as great fodder by those of its intended ideological target audience, all I see is an empty string of Ad Homs.
And when it comes to horrible people, the non GMO side is often hardly of any credibility. Yellow rice. Possible solution to nutrition problems of the Global South (to speak the language of some of these hippy nitwits), stopped in its tracks. Because of fear.
As I have said before (and will likely say again!), there is a lot of bullshit to go around. No one has clean hands.
As such, one side trying to smear the other by way of parading its worst offences in front of the public spotlight does not impress me.