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8133Re: Farmers suicide India-due to bankruptcy and GM seeds.

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  • ai3131
    Nov 9, 2008
      Mr. Fukuoka once asked why 0% growth is often viewed as something
      bad, despite teh stability such a figure would bring. He was very
      critical regarding the current economic systems, capitalist or

      Here is an abridged version of "Money: Understanding and Creating
      Alternatives to Legal Tender", by Thomas H. Greco, Jr. :


      For more e-books like this go to:


      - Arian I.

      --- In fukuoka_farming@yahoogroups.com, cid ananda <cidanandas@...>
      > The GM genocide: Thousands of Indian farmers are committing suicide
      after using
      > genetically modified crops
      > By Andrew Malone
      > When Prince Charles claimed thousands of Indian farmers were
      killing themselves
      > after using GM crops, he was branded a scaremonger. In fact, as
      this chilling
      > dispatch reveals, it's even WORSE than he feared.
      > The children were inconsolable. Mute with shock and fighting back
      tears, they
      > huddled beside their mother as friends and neighbours prepared
      their father's
      > body for cremation on a blazing bonfire built on the cracked,
      barren fields
      > near their home.
      > As flames consumed the corpse, Ganjanan, 12, and Kalpana, 14,
      faced a grim
      > future. While Shankara Mandaukar had hoped his son and daughter
      would have a
      > better life under India's economic boom, they now face working as
      slave labour
      > for a few pence a day. Landless and homeless, they will be the
      lowest of the
      > low.
      > Indian farmer
      > Human tragedy: A farmer and child in India's 'suicide belt'
      > Shankara, respected farmer, loving husband and father, had taken
      his own life.
      > Less than 24 hours earlier, facing the loss of his land due to
      debt, he drank a
      > cupful of chemical insecticide.
      > Unable to pay back the equivalent of two years' earnings, he was
      in despair. He
      > could see no way out.
      > There were still marks in the dust where he had writhed in agony.
      > villagers looked on - they knew from experience that any
      intervention was
      > pointless - as he lay doubled up on the ground, crying out in pain
      > vomiting.
      > Moaning, he crawled on to a bench outside his simple home 100
      miles from Nagpur
      > in central India. An hour later, he stopped making any noise. Then
      he stopped
      > breathing. At 5pm on Sunday, the life of Shankara Mandaukar came
      to an end.
      > As neighbours gathered to pray outside the family home, Nirmala
      Mandaukar, 50,
      > told how she rushed back from the fields to find her husband
      dead. 'He was a
      > loving and caring man,' she said, weeping quietly.
      > 'But he couldn't take any more. The mental anguish was too much.
      We have lost
      > everything.'
      > Shankara's crop had failed - twice. Of course, famine and
      pestilence are part
      > of India's ancient story.
      > But the death of this respected farmer has been blamed on
      something far more
      > modern and sinister: genetically modified crops.
      > Shankara, like millions of other Indian farmers, had been promised
      > unheard of harvests and income if he switched from farming with
      > seeds to planting GM seeds instead.
      > Prince Charles
      > Distressed: Prince Charles has set up charity Bhumi Vardaan
      Foundation to
      > address the plight of suicide farmers
      > Beguiled by the promise of future riches, he borrowed money in
      order to buy the
      > GM seeds. But when the harvests failed, he was left with
      spiralling debts - and
      > no income.
      > So Shankara became one of an estimated 125,000 farmers to take
      their own life
      > as a result of the ruthless drive to use India as a testing ground
      > genetically modified crops.
      > The crisis, branded the 'GM Genocide' by campaigners, was
      highlighted recently
      > when Prince Charles claimed that the issue of GM had become
      a 'global moral
      > question' - and the time had come to end its unstoppable march.
      > Speaking by video link to a conference in the Indian capital,
      Delhi, he
      > infuriated bio-tech leaders and some politicians by
      condemning 'the truly
      > appalling and tragic rate of small farmer suicides in India,
      stemming... from
      > the failure of many GM crop varieties'.
      > Ranged against the Prince are powerful GM lobbyists and prominent
      > who claim that genetically modified crops have transformed Indian
      > providing greater yields than ever before.
      > The rest of the world, they insist, should embrace 'the future'
      and follow
      > suit.
      > So who is telling the truth? To find out, I travelled to
      the 'suicide belt' in
      > Maharashtra state.
      > What I found was deeply disturbing - and has profound implications
      > countries, including Britain, debating whether to allow the
      planting of seeds
      > manipulated by scientists to circumvent the laws of nature.
      > For official figures from the Indian Ministry of Agriculture do
      indeed confirm
      > that in a huge humanitarian crisis, more than 1,000 farmers kill
      > here each month.
      > Simple, rural people, they are dying slow, agonising deaths. Most
      > insecticide - a pricey substance they were promised they would not
      need when
      > they were coerced into growing expensive GM crops.
      > It seems that many are massively in debt to local money-lenders,
      > over-borrowed to purchase GM seed.
      > Pro-GM experts claim that it is rural poverty, alcoholism, drought
      > 'agrarian distress' that is the real reason for the horrific toll.
      > But, as I discovered during a four-day journey through the
      epicentre of the
      > disaster, that is not the full story.
      > Monsanto
      > Death seeds: A Greenpeace protester sprays milk-based paint on a
      > research soybean field near Atlantic, Iowa
      > In one small village I visited, 18 farmers had committed suicide
      after being
      > sucked into GM debts. In some cases, women have taken over farms
      from their
      > dead husbands - only to kill themselves as well.
      > Latta Ramesh, 38, drank insecticide after her crops failed - two
      years after
      > her husband disappeared when the GM debts became too much.
      > She left her ten-year-old son, Rashan, in the care of
      relatives. 'He cries when
      > he thinks of his mother,' said the dead woman's aunt, sitting
      listlessly in
      > shade near the fields.
      > Village after village, families told how they had fallen into debt
      after being
      > persuaded to buy GM seeds instead of traditional cotton seeds.
      > The price difference is staggering: £10 for 100 grams of GM seed,
      compared with
      > less than £10 for 1,000 times more traditional seeds.
      > But GM salesmen and government officials had promised farmers that
      these were
      > 'magic seeds' - with better crops that would be free from
      parasites and
      > insects.
      > Indeed, in a bid to promote the uptake of GM seeds, traditional
      varieties were
      > banned from many government seed banks.
      > The authorities had a vested interest in promoting this new
      > Desperate to escape the grinding poverty of the post-independence
      years, the
      > Indian government had agreed to allow new bio-tech giants, such as
      the U.S.
      > market-leader Monsanto, to sell their new seed creations.
      > In return for allowing western companies access to the second most
      > country in the world, with more than one billion people, India was
      > International Monetary Fund loans in the Eighties and Nineties,
      helping to
      > launch an economic revolution.
      > But while cities such as Mumbai and Delhi have boomed, the
      farmers' lives have
      > slid back into the dark ages.
      > Though areas of India planted with GM seeds have doubled in two
      years - up to
      > 17 million acres - many famers have found there is a terrible
      price to be paid.
      > Far from being 'magic seeds', GM pest-proof 'breeds' of cotton
      have been
      > devastated by bollworms, a voracious parasite.
      > Nor were the farmers told that these seeds require double the
      amount of water.
      > This has proved a matter of life and death.
      > With rains failing for the past two years, many GM crops have
      simply withered
      > and died, leaving the farmers with crippling debts and no means of
      paying them
      > off.
      > Having taken loans from traditional money lenders at extortionate
      > hundreds of thousands of small farmers have faced losing their
      land as the
      > expensive seeds fail, while those who could struggle on faced a
      fresh crisis.
      > When crops failed in the past, farmers could still save seeds and
      replant them
      > the following year.
      > But with GM seeds they cannot do this. That's because GM seeds
      contain so-
      > called 'terminator technology', meaning that they have been
      > modified so that the resulting crops do not produce viable seeds
      of their own.
      > As a result, farmers have to buy new seeds each year at the same
      > prices. For some, that means the difference between life and death.
      > Take the case of Suresh Bhalasa, another farmer who was cremated
      this week,
      > leaving a wife and two children.
      > As night fell after the ceremony, and neighbours squatted outside
      while sacred
      > cows were brought in from the fields, his family had no doubt that
      > troubles stemmed from the moment they were encouraged to buy BT
      Cotton, a
      > geneticallymodified plant created by Monsanto.
      > 'We are ruined now,' said the dead man's 38-year-old wife. 'We
      bought 100 grams
      > of BT Cotton. Our crop failed twice. My husband had become
      depressed. He went
      > out to his field, lay down in the cotton and swallowed
      > Villagers bundled him into a rickshaw and headed to hospital along
      rutted farm
      > roads. 'He cried out that he had taken the insecticide and he was
      sorry,' she
      > said, as her family and neighbours crowded into her home to pay
      their respects.
      > 'He was dead by the time they got to hospital.'
      > Asked if the dead man was a 'drunkard' or suffered from
      other 'social
      > problems', as alleged by pro-GM officials, the quiet, dignified
      > erupted in anger. 'No! No!' one of the dead man's brothers
      exclaimed. 'Suresh
      > was a good man. He sent his children to school and paid his taxes.
      > 'He was strangled by these magic seeds. They sell us the seeds,
      saying they
      > will not need expensive pesticides but they do. We have to buy the
      same seeds
      > from the same company every year. It is killing us. Please tell
      the world what
      > is happening here.'
      > Monsanto has admitted that soaring debt was a 'factor in this
      tragedy'. But
      > pointing out that cotton production had doubled in the past seven
      years, a
      > spokesman added that there are other reasons for the recent
      crisis, such as
      > 'untimely rain' or drought, and pointed out that suicides have
      always been part
      > of rural Indian life.
      > Officials also point to surveys saying the majority of Indian
      farmers want GM
      > seeds - no doubt encouraged to do so by aggressive marketing
      > During the course of my inquiries in Maharastra, I encountered
      > 'independent' surveyors scouring villages for information about
      suicides. They
      > insisted that GM seeds were only 50 per cent more expensive - and
      then later
      > admitted the difference was 1,000 per cent.
      > (A Monsanto spokesman later insisted their seed is 'only double'
      the price of
      > 'official' non-GM seed - but admitted that the difference can be
      vast if
      > cheaper traditional seeds are sold by 'unscrupulous' merchants,
      who often also
      > sell 'fake' GM seeds which are prone to disease.)
      > With rumours of imminent government compensation to stem the wave
      of deaths,
      > many farmers said they were desperate for any form of
      assistance. 'We just want
      > to escape from our problems,' one said. 'We just want help to stop
      any more of
      > us dying.'
      > Prince Charles is so distressed by the plight of the suicide
      farmers that he is
      > setting up a charity, the Bhumi Vardaan Foundation, to help those
      affected and
      > promote organic Indian crops instead of GM.
      > India's farmers are also starting to fight back. As well as taking
      GM seed
      > distributors hostage and staging mass protests, one state
      government is taking
      > legal action against Monsanto for the exorbitant costs of GM seeds.
      > This came too late for Shankara Mandauker, who was 80,000 rupees
      (about £1,000)
      > in debt when he took his own life. 'I told him that we can
      survive,' his widow
      > said, her children still by her side as darkness fell. 'I told him
      we could
      > find a way out. He just said it was better to die.'
      > But the debt does not die with her husband: unless she can find a
      way of paying
      > it off, she will not be able to afford the children's schooling.
      They will lose
      > their land, joining the hordes seen begging in their thousands by
      the roadside
      > throughout this vast, chaotic country.
      > Cruelly, it's the young who are suffering most from the 'GM
      Genocide' - the
      > very generation supposed to be lifted out of a life of hardship
      and misery by
      > these 'magic seeds'.
      > Here in the suicide belt of India, the cost of the genetically
      modified future
      > is murderously high.
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      > claude yuen à PLANETVEDA
      > afficher le détail 06:44 (il y a 1 heure)
      > Répondre
      > Haribol!
      > Subash Palekar has now the answer,with natural farmin or zero
      budget farming.Plse google it.
      > Iskcon should help him to distribute his books about vedic
      > Cidanandas
      > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
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