Friday, February 28, 2014



Temecula, CA – It seems today that you can’t go anywhere without a charity for this and a charity for
that. The golf matches alone around the valley will be a circuit for Tiger when he drops to casino touring. Pictures of bald kids, some raccoon-eyed, in a shameless pull at the purse-strings of the walking passersby, those least able to afford the luxury of funding research, appear even at bus stops. Though the pictures are real, it is the propaganda that is not.

So what is the ‘poop of the scoop’ deal here? I don’t wanna do a protest. I don’t wanna do the research. I do eat at Mickey Dees, and George Who? I’m not political but someone close to me has just been diagnosed with the disease. My brain is mush and I am on numb. What can you tell me to help me digest and make sense of this situation I suddenly find myself at the middle of?

As the called-home son of a mom who died from cancer, I can answer that question right after the jump. This is why I print stories about GMOs and other health-related topics.

Meet survivors who explain why diet after the fact is as important as before. The fight for your health isn’t over the moment you become sick, it has begun in earnest and gotten personal.

Thursday, February 27, 2014



Temecula, CA – What has seemed to be just a grassroots campaign getting scant notice beyond the foodies of some political health circles, is the effect of the industrialized factory farm on the food chain, involving GMOs, corruption, and unchecked accountability by official agencies.

One end product provider, Chipotle Mexican Grill, has always bucked the fast food industry trend of providing unhealthy but tasty food to consumers.

Reported here in the third report of an ongoing series about the forward-thinking food restaurant chain is the review of the first two Hulu episodes of Farmed And Dangerous.

The trailer includes brief segments from all four episodes spliced together for an abbreviated storyline. In actuality individual webisodes, each about 20 minutes long, spin a much richer story, fuller characters, and a very realistic scenario in the non-conspiracy neighborhood.

The four-part series, produced by Chipotle Mexican Grill, satirizes what Chipotle founder Steve Ells calls “industrial farming.” And he said “Farmed and Dangerous” was intended to shine a light on the lengths to which industrial farming companies would go to spread misinformation.

In episode 1, we meet the central protagonist and main antagonists. In the middle we have the damsel. If this sounds simple, it isn’t. The hero, Chip Randolph, has a sustainable family farm association. He is organic and political. He and Animoil, a Monsanto/Dow Chemical end user, are recognized enemies. Chip gets a hold of film showing a jersey cow being fed a petroleum-based feed grain called Petro Pellets exploding, and releases it to the internet. It goes viral.

The company Animoil has a Dallas style Texan at the helm whose son is ‘steadies’ with the daughter of the advertising company head representing Animoil. The plot thickens. 

We meet the daughter, a ravishing and statuesque blond who is all business the same time as the company board, the group who has been dissing the boss before he enters the room. The daughter, Sophia, keeps cool, adding to the chumminess of the board, then becomes the boy wonder when volunteering and securing opponent Chip for a face-to-face chat with Dad over product point of view, especially regarding the exploding cow. That, in a burrito, is Episode 1.

The character, Chip, repeatedly seems ready to drop the video all for a chance to intellectually debate [actually called social intercourse once upon a time] the lovely and assertive Sophia. The political discourse is to clarify the question for each side. For Chip the question is, you are as smart as you are beautiful, how can you not see the wrong in feeding cattle crap like this? For Sophia the question is, how can you hope to win; when we are so powerful and you are so small? We will crush you and your good looks, but first I will dominate you mentally.

In real life this is also the mindset theme of lobbyists like the GMA [Grocery Manufacturers Association] and Monsanto/DOW, etc. with their hold over the government through being appointed heads of departments. 

Episode 2 continues the battle between the sexes/ideals spearheaded by Chip and Sophia along with the growing propaganda war between the exploding cow video backlash versus marketing by Animoil.
Though this series has only been released for less than a month, already the pro-Monsantostatus quo defenders are attacking the Chipotle series as showing the industrial food industry as biased.

Trust me, Sports Fans, as any long time reader of this column can attest, CODEX now called TPP, GMOs, and the swinging door policy have been around a lot longer than Chipotle. Farmed And Dangerous would be a lot funnier if it wasn’t true. As it is, the show series is biting, hard, edgy, and spot on with the characterization themes. Chipotle also lists their menu item ingredients onlinefor its eating public to see, rather than sending you to the FDA for what’s safe, the way Dairy Queen does. You can see their nutritional facts onsite but not Dairy Queen’s ingredients. 

Watch episode one.

Watch episode two.

Friday, February 14, 2014



Temecula, CA – Tis the time of the year when the Heart Over Murrieta is seen again like a February
Bainbridge Christmas tree light extravaganza, with one exception. The engineer who puts on the display with a little help from his friends can stage this performance year after year. The picture that you see at right was only staged once, over a tall hill in this area, never to be created again, unless, perhaps the person who took this picture returns to the valley someday.

I say this is the case because I know the photographer and the circumstances under which the photograph came to be [untouched or photo-shopped]. Like the day this appears annually in print or online, the origin story is as magical as the real story of Saint Valentine.

Both the photographer and the saint got into trouble concerning education. The difference is one escaped any punishment because of his magic. The other got a day remembered in his honor. 

The story after the jump.

Centuries ago, the monk Valentine, a favorite of the emperor, got into trouble for teaching a blind woman to read. He had violated a decree and it cost him his head. At his death, the blind woman was granted sight, as she had been blind from birth.

Flash forward to the present.

The photographer walked into his dad’s room. His father had just gotten home from his day job.

“Er, hi dad. Listen there is something I need to tell you before they call from the (principal’s) office.”

The father cocked his ear and looked attentively at his son.

“I cut school today, and went hiking. I just didn’t feel like school for some reason, but I took this picture for you with your phone.”

The father, in stunned silence took the old Motorola RAZR and flipped it open, going to the picture display.


“I’m sorry but I wanted to tell you before the office called. Am I in trouble?”

The father took a second look at the picture, and then reflected on the boy’s mother, a wiccan, or witch as the belief system is popularly labeled. The man looked back up and said,

“No. This weekend you and me are going to climb up that same hill. I’ve always wanted someone to climb it with.”

(This picture previously appeared in print via a February issue of Neighbors, Temecula. The photographer is my youngest son – Ed)

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

FrankenFear Weed

Is medical marijuana genetically modified (GMO)?

This is a common curiosity among many folks, including cannabis connoisseurs, when finding out that
GMO pot is on the market. Isn’t all pot genetically engineered? In truth, this same question has been posed to John Diaz and me during our label GMO information meetings in Orange County. As a public service to both stoners and non-stoners, here is a report to enlighten both groups. Monsanto is our common enemy, and our kids’ boogieman.

‘There are thousands of different strains of marijuana, created for all sorts of reasons. The last decade has seen an incredible increase in the understanding that certain strains of marijuana are better for certain ailments, and growers and caretakers have bred plants specifically for those diseases. In a recent CNNspecial, for example, Dr. Sanjay Guptaprofiled the strain “Charlotte’s Web,” which was created with a high CBD content and low THC content, contributing to its effectiveness in treating a child’s violent seizures without the “high” typically associated with THC. 

Is all that marijuana what we’d call “GMO”? No. 

Part of the confusion rests in what the public understands about plant [food] science. Since practically the dawn of agriculture, people have taken the traits they like in two differentplants and bred the plants together, hoping the offspring would embody the good traits of each and none of the bad. Farmers call these hybrids. And just as humans only produce offspring with other humans, plants can only breed naturally with like plants — you’ll never see a tomato, for example, breeding with fish. 

In other words, say you want a cannabis plant that’s easy to grow and has a high CBD (cannabidiol, a cannabinoid known for its therapeutic impact) content. Cannabis plant A is easy to grow, but has a low amount of CBD. Cannabis plant B is harder to grow, but has a high amount of CBD. By breeding the two together, you could get hundreds of seeds. You plant them, and then test them using a machine to determine which plants have your desired qualities. Those are the plants you keep. The plants that didn’t yield those qualities, you destroy

This is classicbreeding, and it’s a naturalprocess, using “biotechnology” to test and confirm what aspects of the breeding were successful. Yes, humans are assisting, but they aren’t splicing into the cannabis plant’s DNA a gene from a tomato plant to create red-colored buds, for example. That would be an unnatural process — cannabis plants don’t breed with tomatoes. And that is what GMO frequently is all about: genetic modification, by putting something into the plant or taking something out in a way that would not naturally occur. It’s an intentional removal, or addition, to the plant’s DNA

People confuse“‘I’m using biotechnology’ with ‘genetically modified,’ ” says Anndrea Hermann, owner of The Ridge International Cannabis Consulting, an international consulting group concerning all things cannabis. (Hermann is also an expert in plant science who serves as the president of the Hemp Industries Association.) “I’m using a tool, a machine, that can look at an attribute, a quality or a trait, to tell me early on in my breeding program if that’s a good plant to keep. Early detection of the quality is what we’re looking for.” Think of early detection of a disease in your body — no one wants to waste time or money or health waiting until the disease is out of control. The same is true with cannabis plants.

Is it possible to genetically modify cannabis? Absolutely, says Hermann. But does that mean Monsanto (the widely-recognized king of GMO corporations) is cooking up some GMO weed, as thousands of writers and bloggershave speculated online? 

“No,” says Sara Miller, of Monsanto Public Affairs. “Monsantois not conducting research in this area and I am not aware of any legitimate research in this area under development by other seed companies. Any rumoredinvolvement by seed companies is ‘urban legend.’ ” 

Meanwhile, the industrial hemp industry has gone as far as placing a moratorium on genetically modifying hemp. “It’s a responsibility of the trade associations and their members” to keep genetic modification from happening, says Hermann. 

At this time, though, there is no moratorium on genetic modification in the cannabis or medical marijuana industry. Which isn’t to say that it’s happening with any frequency. “I think we’re far from [genetically modifying cannabis],” says Betty Aldworth, deputy director of the National Cannabis Industry Association. “The possibility of genetically modifying cannabis is so far down the road, no one [in the professional cannabis industry] is even discussing the possibility.”'

Sorry Betty, our local Veronica, Letitia Pepper tells a different tale, and GMO apples are out, at least in California.

Please watch video below, paying particular attention from the start up to just after the one mark.

(Story source - VALERIE VANDE PANNE;all emphasis - Ed; edited for content)

Saturday, February 8, 2014



Temecula, CA - While some people may cheer as the Somali pirates are sniped by Navy Seal sending a 'Don't Tread On US' signal out to the world, there are other countries too which have fought the piracy brought on with Northern Europe's dumping of nuclear waste off the African coast. From DUBAI comes this report.

An Iranian naval officer said a number of warships haav been ordered to approach U.S. maritime borders as a response to the stationing of U.S. vessels in the Gulf, the semi-official Fars news agency reported Saturday.

 "Iran's military fleet is approaching the United States' maritime borders, and this move has a message," the agency quoted Admiral Afshin Rezayee Haddad as saying.

Haddad, described as commander of the Iranian navy's northern fleet, said the vessels had started their voyage towards the Atlantic Ocean via "waters near South Africa." Fars reported, the plan was part of "Iran's response to Washington's beefed up naval presence in the Persian Gulf."

The Fars report, which carried no details of the vessels, could not be confirmed independently.

The United States and its allies regularly stage naval exercises in the Gulf, saying they want to ensure freedom of navigation in the waterway through which 40 percent of the world's seaborne oil exports passes. U.S. military facilities in the region include a base for its Fifth Fleet in the Gulf Arab kingdom of Bahrain.

Iran sees the Gulf as its own backyard and believes it has a legitimate interest in expanding its influence there. Iranian officials have often said Iran could block the Strait of Hormuz, at the mouth of the Gulf, if it came under military attack over its disputed nuclear programme, and the Western war games are seen in the region as an attempt to deter any such move.

Fars said the Iranian navy had been developing its presence in international waters since 2010, regularly launching vessels in the Indian Ocean and the Gulf of Aden to protect Iranian ships from Somali pirates operating in the area.

What makes this report so interesting is that is the scenario played out in Orson Wells' excellent 80s docudrama about the legendary seer Nostradamus. Please see the parts 8 and 9, if memory serves, on YouTube to see for yourself.

You may also remember that it was Nostradamus who provided the second confirmation to St. Malachy predicting the last Pope. That's the Pope we are on now, Sports Fans.

(Story source - William Maclean, Reuters