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I seem to be basically voting the Stranger ticket again this year.… - adventures of programmer with screwdriver
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Time:10:38 pm
I seem to be basically voting the Stranger ticket again this year. Sawant, yay; McGinn, sure; not-Pope; not-Eyman; um… I might abstain on some of the offices I'm utterly ignorant about.

I'm on the fence about 522 and 19 though. What do y'all think?


I-522 as written seems pretty useless. It doesn't really tell you what you need to know; a useful version of that law would tell you what transgenes are in your food. As it is, it seems like at best I-522's labels would be like the universal and universally ignored notices on California buildings telling you that somewhere inside the building is some toxin or carcinogen. Except most GMO foods aren't even bad. I-522 doesn't even require disclosure of which ingredients in a processed food might be GM, which could give you a hint.

The arguments for it, in my mind, are that (a) it might be an intermediate step to getting better labeling, and (b) Monsanto's put a lot of money into the campaign against it, and if Monsanto's ag'in it it can't be all bad.

The other argument against I-522 is that most people avoiding GMO food are not avoiding it for good reasons and that labeling would simply encourage people to continue to make that ill-informed decision. But I think it's better to fight that particular battle with education and information rather than secrecy. (I know, I know, I'm an incorrigible optimist when it comes to things like that. Ask me about nuclear power.)

So as usual with initiatives I'm torn between favoring a halfassed measure that might be heading in a good direction vs. rejecting it in hopes it comes back in better form later.
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randomdreams
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Time:2013-10-29 06:06 am (UTC)
I voted for one questionable amendment purely because the first hit was the website run by a local racist blowhard, campaigning against it. I hate to vote that way but I know anything he's for, I'm against.
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eub
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Time:2013-10-29 06:33 am (UTC)
Yeah, I think those "known to the State of California" labels are a very apt comparison. Is anyone happy to have those?

Besides that Monsanto is a Multiset<Dick>, I'd try to imagine this as a step towards useful labeling of GMO food... if I even had a vision of what better labeling would be. Do people have thoughts what that would be like? Allergens certainly need to be labeled, but that's one thing that I suspect will get labeled even in the absence of anything like 522, because liability will require it.

Also if I-522 leads to anything, I'm not optimistic enough to think it will not lead to geeky detailed genetic labeling, rather than to incompletely-informed market pressure.

I probably will end up using my usual razor for initiatives: if the answer isn't clearly yes, the answer is no.

Edited at 2013-10-29 06:34 am (UTC)
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jinian
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Time:2013-10-29 03:02 pm (UTC)
Allergens are a separate issue, yes. The genetic material used in most GM crops doesn't produce them anyway. (I checked this out in detail for Roundup-Ready, but I'm assuming for the rest, hence "most".)

I hate being on the same side as Monsanto, too, but I keep imagining people rejecting Golden Rice because it has a GMO label. Also, PCC thinking their ridiculous anti-everything policies are justified.
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tylik
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Time:2013-10-29 04:40 pm (UTC)
I am really loving the idea of transgene specific labelling, but likely not realistic in this country.

And... yeah, for me, Golden Rice is totally germane, because it was a big part of the anti-GMO campaigns in Europe, which turned into labelling and enough public scepticism that no one sources GMO foodstuffs.

(One of my hobbies is upsetting Greenpeace workers about Golden Rice - they almost universally don't know that story - and wasting a lot of their time and then declining to give them money. And they still keep calling.)
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I seem to be basically voting the Stranger ticket again this year.… - adventures of programmer with screwdriver
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