Legal Issues

by Glyn Moody


Filed Under:
farming, jail, patents, seeds, tanzania

Companies:
monsanto, syngenta



Tanzanian Farmers Face 12 Years In Prison For Selling Seeds As They've Done For Generations

from the why-not-adopt-big-ag's-patented-approach-instead? dept

Seeds might not seem to have much to do with digital technology, but the DNA that lies at their heart is in fact digital information, and thus many of the issues that concern Techdirt also apply here. One of the key battlegrounds for seeds and their ownership is Africa, as we discussed back in 2013. The Belgian site Mondiaal Nieuws has an update on what's happening in one of the poorest African countries, Tanzania. Things aren't looking good there following a change in the relevant law:

"If you buy seeds from Syngenta or Monsanto under the new legislation, they will retain the intellectual property rights. If you save seeds from your first harvest, you can use them only on your own piece of land for non-commercial purposes. You're not allowed to share them with your neighbors or with your sister-in-law in a different village, and you cannot sell them for sure. But that's the entire foundation of the seed system in Africa", says Michael Farrelly [from an organic farming movement in Tanzania].

Under the new law, Tanzanian farmers risk a prison sentence of at least 12 years or a fine of over €205,300 [about $213,000], or both, if they sell seeds that are not certified.

"That's an amount that a Tanzanian farmer cannot even start to imagine. The average wage is still less than 2 US dollars a day", says Janet Maro, head of Sustainable Agriculture Tanzania (SAT).
The article indicates that "certified" in this context means patented. That's obviously a problem for small-scale farmers, since they would be unable to afford to go through the patenting process, even if that were even a realistic option. For multinationals like Syngenta or Monsanto, by contrast, patenting is as natural as breathing, and so the new system will strengthen their hand considerably.
"As a result, the farmers' seed system will collapse, because they can't sell their own seeds", according to Janet Maro. "Multinationals will provide our country with seeds and all the farmers will have to buy them from them. That means that we will lose biodiversity, because it is impossible for them to investigate and patent all the seeds we need. We're going to end up with fewer types of seeds."
Here's why this is all happening:
Tanzania applied the legislation concerning intellectual property rights on seeds as a condition for receiving development assistance through the New Alliance for Food Security and Nutrition (NAFSN). The NAFSN was launched in 2012 by the G8 with the goal to help 50 million people out of poverty and hunger in the ten African partner countries through a public-private partnership. The initiative receives the support of the EU, the US, the UK, the World Bank and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
What's particularly regrettable here is not just the loss of biodiversity, and the fact that African farmers will be beholden to Western corporations, but that the NAFSN program will achieve the opposite of its stated aims, and end up taking away what little independence Tanzanian farmers enjoyed under the traditional seed system. No wonder, then, that last year Members of the European Parliament called for the NAFSN to "radically alter its mission". Judging by what's happening in Tanzania, there's no sign of that happening.

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  • icon
    That One Guy (profile), 9 Jan 2017 @ 5:11pm

    'Buy from us or go to jail, your choice'

    So if they use the same seeds they always have, they face insane fines and jail time. Or they can buy from scum like Monsanto, every single year, if they want to be able to sell anything, which is going to take a hefty chunk out of any profits they might have been able to make, and give said scum huge 'negotiating' ability since the farmers either buy from them, buy from them, or buy from them.

    Oh yeah, this is absolutely going to help the farmers... right into bankruptcy. That it came as a result of 'If you want help, you get it on our terms' that essentially handed over the farming industry to private companies just makes it even more disgusting.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      JustShutUpAndObey, 9 Jan 2017 @ 6:14pm

      Re: 'Buy from us or go to jail, your choice'

      What a great scheme! When we foreclose on these farmers for non-payment of fines, we add their (former) land to our own expanding land holdings.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 9 Jan 2017 @ 6:47pm

      Re: 'Buy from us or go to jail, your choice'

      It is unclear to me at this point if it is "any seeds", or of it is simply seeds leased (not purchased) from Syngenta or Monsanto.

      The issue with IP rights on seed is well covered in Agribusiness journals. Less well known is that the same thing is happening with chickens, hogs, and cattle. The packaging company specifies what stock to buy, what feed to use, where to get each, and frequently has a financial interest in all of it. The people that actually raise the stock see their profits turn to loss, and no real way to get out of the game other than going bankrupt and letting the multinational take over their land and operations.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Wendy Cockcroft, 10 Jan 2017 @ 2:23am

        Re: Re: 'Buy from us or go to jail, your choice'

        This is slavery. Nothing more, nothing less, nothing else. And it is antithetical to a free market. This, my friends, is why we're opposed to GM foods in Europe.

        Now will somebody kindly tell that smug little git Brian Cox this? He's been on the BBC saying it's a Luddite fear of Frankenstein thing.

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        • icon
          PaulT (profile), 10 Jan 2017 @ 2:44am

          Re: Re: Re: 'Buy from us or go to jail, your choice'

          Brian Cox is far from a luddite. But, these are 2 completely different arguments relating to vastly different fields. I haven't seen the show you're referring to, but if the arguments he's being posed with are related purely to the science of it, then the "Frankenstein" argument does seem to the most prevalent attack that he's likely to be responding to.

          Your argument is a completely different thing, and something that Cox, as a particle physicist, is going to be even less equipped to address than the genetics side. He'll be on the BBC simply because he's considered the "friendly" face of science in the UK, and he's answering arguments about the science. You're arguing completely on the sociological and business side, which are arguments not addressed in that kind of discussion.

          Perhaps instead of attacking him on blog comments he's never going to read, you can respond to him via the methods provided by the BBC? At least you're more likely to get a response, if not actually present an argument that he's not been responding to because he hasn't heard it?

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          • identicon
            Anonymous Coward, 10 Jan 2017 @ 4:37am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: 'Buy from us or go to jail, your choice'

            Sorry man, but it's one issue not two as they go hand in hand and are quite inseparable. In fact the land grab scheme requires use of the gmo product.

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

            • icon
              PaulT (profile), 10 Jan 2017 @ 5:23am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: 'Buy from us or go to jail, your choice'

              "one issue not two as they go hand in hand and are quite inseparable"

              No, it's quite easy to discuss the actual science of GMOs without even mentioning the agricultural and other impacts. If you're only presented with the "Frankenstein food" argument and you're rebutting that, you have no need to even think about the other factors unless they're introduced. It just means you're considering the scientific facts, and not considering how the science is being applied.

              It may be impossible to discuss the environmental, sociological, etc. aspects without discussing the science, but it's definitely possible to discuss the science itself without those other things.

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

              • identicon
                Anonymous Coward, 10 Jan 2017 @ 6:44am

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: 'Buy from us or go to jail, your choice'

                Yeah - only problem is once the frankenfood argument is put to bed by solid scientific data and analysis, time is up and you are not allowed to further discuss the nefarious usage of the product in question and some then claim the problem solved and you are being pedantic by any further attempts. Tools do not do harm, the user of said tool however ....

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                • identicon
                  Thad, 10 Jan 2017 @ 11:34am

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: 'Buy from us or go to jail, your choice'

                  But the distinction is not trivial; it's incredibly important, because the legal mechanism for fighting a broken patent system is entirely different from the one for fighting a specific type of crop production. Yes, the two things are one and the same in this case, but you don't call the FDA to enforce patents.

                  It's not GM crops that are dangerous, it's GM patents.

                  reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                  • identicon
                    Anonymous Coward, 10 Jan 2017 @ 6:05pm

                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: 'Buy from us or go to jail, your choice'

                    It's GM CEOs and their cronies that are dangerous.
                    Many more problems exist in agriculture but the giant corporations being allowed to ride rough shod over the unsuspecting population is disgusting. Greed knows no bounds.

                    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                    • identicon
                      Anonymous Coward, 11 Jan 2017 @ 6:22am

                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: 'Buy from us or go to jail, your choice'

                      "giant corporations being allowed to ride rough shod over the unsuspecting population is disgusting. "

                      Who is allowing them to "ride rough shod"? Corporations are going to do what they need to do to make money, that is what they do. They are like a giant virus, they only know one thing. As disgusting as that is, it is the truth. Thad was leading into a good point. When you need enforcement, you call the government. They are the ones that can prevent this but are failing to do so.

                      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Ninja (profile), 10 Jan 2017 @ 4:54am

      Re: 'Buy from us or go to jail, your choice'

      That. Large corporations, with very few exceptions, are a cancer in this world. Eventually we'll go full Wall-e. Minus the cutesy.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 10 Jan 2017 @ 5:23am

      Re: 'Buy from us or go to jail, your choice'

      "So if they use the same seeds they always have, they face insane fines and jail time."

      I don't understand, do you have a citation for this statement? They were using seeds produced in Africa long before the western company can into play. I can't seem to find where they can't go back to using those seeds.

      The story says;

      "If you buy seeds from Syngenta or Monsanto under the new legislation, they will retain the intellectual property rights."

      So don't buy your seeds from these guys if you don't want to be beholden to their terms right? Buy the seeds the same way you were buying before. It seems to me that the farmers were agreeing to the terms, but then not honoring their end of the deal..

      I feel like maybe I'm missing something here?

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Rafael Santos, 10 Jan 2017 @ 6:04am

        Re: Re: 'Buy from us or go to jail, your choice'

        You are just missing this is just one more article in the traditional anti Monsanto echo chamber.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        That One Guy (profile), 10 Jan 2017 @ 1:08pm

        Re: Re: 'Buy from us or go to jail, your choice'

        These parts:

        Under the new law, Tanzanian farmers risk a prison sentence of at least 12 years or a fine of over €205,300 [about $213,000], or both, if they sell seeds that are not certified.

        The article indicates that "certified" in this context means patented. That's obviously a problem for small-scale farmers, since they would be unable to afford to go through the patenting process, even if that were even a realistic option.

        Unless I'm reading that completely wrong, or Glyn wrote it up completely wrong, selling non-'certified', which is to say non-patented seeds means they risk ruinous fines and/or jail time. Since they're already getting very little for their produce the idea that they can just go out and patent the seeds they have always been using isn't exactly a feasible one, meaning they have to buy from the slime companies or risk losing their farm and/or jail time.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 10 Jan 2017 @ 5:24am

      Re: 'Buy from us or go to jail, your choice'

      The 'AAs are surely taking notes to refine their strategy for making this the way of things for their non-seed intellectual property.

      Independent content creators being prohibited from selling their content without first being chained to the parasites just like famers not being allowed to use their own seeds.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 9 Jan 2017 @ 5:53pm

    wait!

    So America is not the only country with bought and sold politicians that rule over an apathetic citizenry that trade votes for political platitudes?

    For shame...

    Every Nation gets the government it deserves.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Wendy Cockcroft, 10 Jan 2017 @ 2:27am

      Re: wait!

      Everybody gets the government they're prepared to accept. We need to be pushing back hard against this kind of thing. Libertarians, liberals, and progressives will usually give us a hand with this. I don't care who they are or what they believe in as long as they are on our side when it counts.

      Writing to reps to express our concerns would be a start. Don't forget to cite this article.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 10 Jan 2017 @ 4:40am

      Re: wait!

      "rule over an apathetic citizenry that trade votes for political platitudes"

      Let me guess .... at the same time you probably speak against things like Occupy Wallstreet, Standing Rock and Black Lives Matter.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 10 Jan 2017 @ 6:27am

        Re: Re: wait!

        Occupy Wallstreet ruined its own message, but I still supported the effort. As usual a bunch of willing but incompetent folks rushed over just to protest for what again? Yes I am well aware that the Media intentionally chose the most incompetent ones out there for the same reasons they chose incompetent pro-gun advocates. They do it to sully the message and marginalize them as crazy people for the sole reason of not being able to eloquently state their position. The other half of that blame goes to the stupid people watching that only care about how well a snake oil salesmen sells their snake oils rather than the fact they are peddling snake oil itself.

        Standing Rock, I do not keep up with them very much so I do not have too much of an opinion either way.

        BLM... yea... a bunch of racists standing up for the right thing but ONLY for their own kind. I have no use for a group of WE SHOULD BE SPECIAL idiots but not anyone else. I was in more support of them at first because police brutality and tyranny is clearly a serious issue, but they are ruining the message by playing the race card. More whites are killed than blacks by cops but only the blacks matter? Yea, that is pretty fucking racist. That said, I am still happy that at least ONE group is saying something, even if they are doing about the worst job possible in the effort.

        All lives matter! And until you show that, their message will be marginalized.

        Everything matters, everything counts. I am one of the absolute few 'actual' pro constitution people left in this nation. Almost no citizens are left alive that support it. Everyone I run into is willing to sacrifice at least 1 thing in the constitution for their political sycophancy and due to its nature if you don't support it 100% you just don't support it at all!

        The entire Constitution has been extensively trashed to the point if the founding fathers were present they would absolutely and unequivocally state that the states should call a convention and toss the entire lot of Central government out and start a new government and if any resistance were met in the process of it to form a militia per the 2nd Amendment and do it by force.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 10 Jan 2017 @ 6:52am

          Re: Re: Re: wait!

          So you admit that there are people out there who are not being "apathetic citizenry" and do not "trade votes for political platitudes" ?

          Stereotyping is the easy way to sum up a situation, however it is most likely incorrect as a result of same.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • identicon
            Anonymous Coward, 10 Jan 2017 @ 7:04am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: wait!

            No, stereotyping IS the correct way. Majorities do matter heck even a loud enough minority can matter as well.

            And just because there are a few exceptions running around during OWS does not mean that the stereotype is somehow untrue. Everything has an exception, and they still do not disprove the rule.

            You are so busy fighting over the usage of labels that you wind up doing your enemies work for them. Brilliant move Einstein!

            Labels are useful and they are put on everything, get used to it because it is never going to change. I have found those arguing against labels are often the biggest hypocritical users of labels themselves.

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

            • identicon
              Anonymous Coward, 10 Jan 2017 @ 9:11am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: wait!

              "Everything has an exception"

              Is there an exception here?



              "You are so busy fighting over the usage of labels"

              It's not my problem, it's yours. Use of stereotypical buckets in which to put everyone almost always means you are incorrect. Exceptions to the stereotype absolutely mean the stereotype is incorrect. Your logic twisting is impressive but meaningless.

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

            • identicon
              Anonymous Coward, 10 Jan 2017 @ 1:29pm

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: wait!

              "Brilliant move Einstein!"

              "Labels are useful and they are put on everything, get used to it because it is never going to change. I have found those arguing against labels are often the biggest hypocritical users of labels themselves."

              Wow, do you even read what you write?

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          SC, 10 Jan 2017 @ 10:29am

          Re: Re: Re: wait!

          "All lives matter..." Sigh...this again. That all lives matter is the whole POINT of the slogan "Black Lives Matter". The whole POINT is to scream at the top of ones lungs that a black person's life matters AS MUCH AS anyone else's. It is a cry against the systemic perception that a black or brown life does NOT matter "as much" or "at all" implicitly and explicitly that is being rebutted. Take a moment and recognize that they do not say "ONLY Black Lives Matter". To declare that the two statements are somehow mutually exclusive reflects a knee-jerk defensive reaction to a percieved (but still imagined) insult of one's own making.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Thad, 10 Jan 2017 @ 11:37am

          Re: Re: Re: wait!

          All lives matter!

          Oh FFS.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 10 Jan 2017 @ 12:39pm

          Re: Re: Re: wait!

          I think the biggest failure of the BLM movement is not foreseeing the #alllivesmatter response. They should have just started with "Since all lives matter on paper, can we be treated that way in practice?"

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Ninja (profile), 10 Jan 2017 @ 4:57am

      Re: wait!

      "Every Nation gets the government it deserves."

      This is precisely the type of clueless, bigoted ideas we don't need. If people had full control and the vote meant something then I could agree with you but elections are merely spectacles where the power (mainly the huge corporations and mega-rich people) pulls the strings.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 10 Jan 2017 @ 6:30am

        Re: Re: wait!

        No, you are precisely the type of clueless, not my fault citizen no one needs.

        All that is necessary for evil to prevail is to have a few crybabies like you that cannot take responsibility for their apathy.

        If the voting process is not working for us, then we have to do something... sitting around and whining about it without our cheese is pointless.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 10 Jan 2017 @ 6:54am

          Re: Re: Re: wait!

          And again .. with the buckets that everyone fits into.
          Dude - you are in that same bucket.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • identicon
            Anonymous Coward, 10 Jan 2017 @ 7:06am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: wait!

            Did I claim I was not?

            Just like people in a therapy session, we have to first admit that we have a problem before we can start to understand how to solve it.

            As a nation we have a problem... this includes ALL no one is an exception. It is my hope that you folks finally start understanding that!

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

            • identicon
              Anonymous Coward, 10 Jan 2017 @ 9:14am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: wait!

              "As a nation we have a problem"

              only one?

              and they have always been there

              even if you were able to fix it, how long before someone simply changes it back to what they want?

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • icon
          Ninja (profile), 10 Jan 2017 @ 9:33am

          Re: Re: Re: wait!

          "All that is necessary for evil to prevail is to have a few crybabies like you that cannot take responsibility for their apathy."

          I don't recall saying we should not take responsibility. I'm doing what I can by supporting initiatives that aim to change this status quo. I'm doing what I can by spreading knowledge of these crony ways of our Governments.

          "If the voting process is not working for us, then we have to do something... sitting around and whining about it without our cheese is pointless."

          I'm all ears. Discussing, talking about it, "whining" if you will is part of what can be done to reach critical mass and change the tides. There are plenty of attempts all around from Greens to Pirates, from peaceful protests to full blown civil wars, from pure capitalist to hybrids that try to blend in what socialism has to offer without going full blown communism that has already failed even before capitalism showed it's heading to the same place. Saying every nation gets the govt it deserves is missing the point by light years.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    tracyanne, 9 Jan 2017 @ 6:06pm

    Bill to Mellinda

    "Do you think anyone will notice we helped screw a bunch of African counties?"

    Mellinda "Even if someone does, it won't be anyone who matters."

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 10 Jan 2017 @ 6:33am

      Re: Bill to Mellinda

      I am happy to find another person that understands the terrible things they have done to africa.

      They are exacting a terrible price for their philanthropy over there and many people are eating it up! It is so easy to purchase the adoration of people by shaking a few crumbs from your table.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    ECA (profile), 9 Jan 2017 @ 6:20pm

    Food as a weapon.

    You have a crop,
    the CROP is Seeds converted to Flour for Food in your nation.
    YOu have to BUY, and sell the WHOLE crop.
    You can only reseed from what you save..
    you can NOT SHARE and HELP OTHERS..
    There can be NONE saved for the future.

    ANYONE want to do that in the USA?? They already DO..
    The old farmers HELD extra seed. HELPED other farmers if they failed. HAD enough for themselves and abit extra..ALWAYS.. THAT is what made FARMING worth the work. you didnt PAY for the SEED every year. Fertilizer was easy and cheap as you had Animals..
    And you had BUILT IN WORKERS, they were called 'YOUR KIDS'.

    CANT DO IT ANYMORE.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 9 Jan 2017 @ 6:32pm

    perry Schmeiser

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Dan, 9 Jan 2017 @ 7:17pm

    I am all for GMO (cause I'm not an ignorant luddite) but their MPAA-level IP protectionism is just too much!

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 9 Jan 2017 @ 7:21pm

    This is what greed does behind the vei

    It monopolizes holds for ransom, the necessary things in life.

    Self reliance of the people, apparently that's not a much of corporate interest

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 9 Jan 2017 @ 7:22pm

    This is what greed does behind the veil of patents

    It monopolizes & holds for ransom, the necessary things in life.

    Self reliance of the people, apparently that's not a much of corporate interest

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 9 Jan 2017 @ 7:43pm

    I'll admit that I have no clue about the ins and outs of agribusiness... but can't the farmers just *not buy* their seeds from Syngenta or Monsanto? Are there not any "open source" style seed producers out there?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Roger Strong (profile), 9 Jan 2017 @ 8:25pm

      Re:

      For a while. Percy Schmeiser in Canada chose not to buy Monsanto seeds. But his neighbors used Monsanto seeds, and eventually they contaminated his crop. At which point he lost the right to save a portion of his seeds for the next year's crop without paying Monsanto a licensing fee.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 10 Jan 2017 @ 11:17am

        Re: Re:

        Your own link says Schmeiser intentionally separated out the 'contaminated' crop's seeds and re-planted them (because he could use a cheap, highly effective herbicide on them and not kill the crop). He thought he could choose to not buy Monsanto seeds and still get the benefits from his neighbor who did. That's why Monsanto sued him and won.

        Monsanto isn't a pristine company, but they're not a cackling evil villain that intentionally causes cross-contamination and sues the contaminated farms. They've sued people who try to get the advantages Monsanto seed provides without paying for those advantages.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Kathy (profile), 9 Jan 2017 @ 8:26pm

      Re:

      Well, according to the article, it sounds like anyone selling seeds in that country has to sell patented seeds. So, that would mean that "open source" style seeds are actually illegal. At least, that's what it looks like.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Wendy Cockcroft, 10 Jan 2017 @ 2:31am

      Re:

      There are, but you'll find that's being made illegal or there's a scare campaign against it.

      We had that in the West but growers just ignored the law and sold their own seed anyway.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 9 Jan 2017 @ 9:02pm

    ...and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

    Why am I not surprised?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Châu, 9 Jan 2017 @ 11:34pm

    Nature and not natural

    How can people patent a seed? They com from nature, genes from nature, patent law forbids patent natural stuff?

    Last year I realize 'intellectual privilege' is not natural. This is example excelenté. People share stuff for 100 000+ years for SURVIVAL, it is DNA. Reason why many people everywhere still share stuff and never stop sharing, even with tyrant IP laws.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Andy, 10 Jan 2017 @ 2:32am

    Solutions!

    I see a lot of people complainign but no solutions for the poor farmers.

    1. The farmers sue for their crops being infected.

    2. the farmers ignore the problme d ignore foreigners wanting there land.

    3. Farmers refuse to plant crops for two years or until the government allow them to continue as they have since crops were first planted millennia ago.

    4. The government use the trade deals and laws that America has created and forced them to sign to establish that the farming industry is in turmoil and that they see losses for billions due to unethical practises, and are paid billions to fix the problem by developing or just licensing there own seeds dna.

    One thing that confuses me is that if my crop is infested by my neighbours seeds that i am held responsible, if anything that crop should be destroyed and the people holding the dna sued to pay for that and other costs in the millions due to the hardship the farmer has to go through by destroying his crop.

    This is not the farmers responsibility, a farmer cannot stop seeds blowing into his fields, that is something that the Monsanto of the world need to be held accountable for.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 10 Jan 2017 @ 9:39am

      Re: Solutions!

      *Sigh*
      1) You cannot sue for your neighbor's crop "infecting" yours. That's called wind, or run-off from rain, or a whole host of other things. This is the same as suing a platform for what someone posts.

      2) In this case, them danged ferriners will have the law and the police/army on their side. It's called an honest politician. Once he's bought, he stays bought!

      3) Possible, but then what are the farmers going to eat? If they plant anything, it will get taken from them by the above army

      4) Yes, because suing the US for breaking a trade agreement that they were not coerced (they were bribed, but not coerced) into will work just about as well as the Apache Indians suing when the Whites wanted their land.

      You can destroy your crop if it is "infested", but then what do you eat? Monsanto owns the seed IP, and are very strict about enforcing it. So much so that it can (and has) buy the courts and get the decisions that it wants. (Note, this is not even necessarily about GMO. You can get good seed without resorting to playing with the DNA, just "natural" breeding.) They have already done so by requiring all seed that is sold or shared by certified (patented) and putting in their TOS that you CANNOT share seed purchased from them, or from crops that were planted using their seed. Therefore, you are breaking the law, unless you manage to pay to get your seed (which has been handed down for the past 1000 years) patented. This would require all your seed to be the same (which it won't be) and have the seed analyzed and the DNA structure to be on file at the patent office, neither of which would be cheap.

      I agree that the farmer cannot stop seeds blowing into his field, but neither can Monsanto stop it. Thanks to corrupt officials, however, they can profiteer from it. Personally, I think the farmers are screwed. They have a choice to be slaves/indentured servants to the corporations or have their own army shoot them for "revolting" by not providing food for sale.

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      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 10 Jan 2017 @ 6:15pm

        Re: Re: Solutions!

        I thought it was the pollen that cross pollinated, silly me.

        and monsanto is doing their best to kill off all the bees, so that will fix everything huh.

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  • identicon
    SeanInNYC, 10 Jan 2017 @ 3:01am

    Horribly Misleading

    What a poorly written and deliberately misleading piece of drivel.

    Monsanto developed seeds that dramatically improve yields in a country with rough agricultural coonditions. Monsanto agrees to let these $2 per day dirt farmers buy their seeds likely at cost, or lower, on the condition that those farmers do not resell the super-seeds that result of the harvest.

    How is that unfair? Monsanto are offering them a way to dramatically improve their life, as well as the lives of their family and community, on a condition they agreed to before they took the seeds.

    There are no Tanzanians with patentable native seeds, the legislation is required because the Tanzanian farmers are not keeping their word, and are selling the superseeds that they bought from Monsanto. In order to combat the theft and wholesale distribution of their seeds going forward, any country who wants these superseeds has to agree to make violation of the agreements enforceable in that jurisdiction.

    The seed companies have been distributing the seeds for years now, trying to get the farmers to comply with the agreements they make. They gave the farmers chance after chance after chance to do the right thing. So, in order to distribute these cheap superseeds to these subsistence farmers, the governments must make their farmers agree to honor their agreements, or the entire nation must stop taking these seeds through these special programss, and go back to their old seeds.

    The author here went into contortions to try to portray a very nice thing done by these agricultural companies (getting superseeds as cheap as normal seeds) as some horrible exploitation.

    I hope these companies decide to take you to court for deliberately misstating the facts.

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    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 10 Jan 2017 @ 4:34am

      Re: Horribly Misleading

      ""If you buy seeds from Syngenta or Monsanto under the new legislation, they will retain the intellectual property rights."

      So IF they buy the seeds from these guys, they can't just harvest the new seeds and sell them, or reuse them on the next harvest? On top of that they are receiving developmental aid?

      Is this a good summary?

      "If you buy seeds from Syngenta or Monsanto"

      This actually seems fair to me. If the farmers don't like it, they can continue to use the seeds they were using before these western companies showed up. They don't have to buy the seeds right? Or did I miss something?

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      • icon
        PaulT (profile), 10 Jan 2017 @ 4:52am

        Re: Re: Horribly Misleading

        If I read him right, these "$2 per day dirt farmers" should be glad that these companies stepped into give them something with so many strings attached, and it's fine for them to be permanently subservient to those companies for their generosity. If criticised by writers, those writers should be sued for suggesting that multinational corporations were not acting merely with the farmers' interests in mind.

        After all, if there are "no Tanzanians with patentable native seeds", then that just means that the Tanzanians should suck it up and do anything those companies want them to do rather than accept that maybe there's a problem with that system in the first place. Or something...

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        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 10 Jan 2017 @ 5:36am

          Re: Re: Re: Horribly Misleading

          If the farmers were being forced to buy the seeds, then ok I get it. But no one is forcing these farmers to buy the seeds, they can continue to use the seeds they've always used right?

          If they don't like the terms, then don't buy the seeds? If this company wants to do business, they would then need to come up with more favorable terms right? What am I missing here guys?

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          • icon
            PaulT (profile), 10 Jan 2017 @ 5:56am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Horribly Misleading

            "But no one is forcing these farmers to buy the seeds, they can continue to use the seeds they've always used right?"

            As mentioned elsewhere here, one issue is cross-contamination. If farmer A agrees to Monsanto's terms but farmer B doesn't, what happens when A's seeds end up in B's field anyway? Anything from adverse weather to birds can cause that. Not a problem if they're farming as they always have, but if the modified seeds are much better at growing, as they're claimed to be?

            There's also the age old problem of tradition vs. protectionism. If the RIAA can't prevent people from sharing their songs, how do GMO companies stop farmers from sharing the seeds like they always have?

            That's the issue here - it's corporations trying to insert protectionist rules that are completely at odds with how things have always worked before they came along - and then imposing massive penalties for them doing things that way. As the article states, "that's the entire foundation of the seed system in Africa" - you don't change that overnight by demanding a contract with what may be relatively under-educated farmers. Who may only understand that they are being offered better seeds without understanding the other implications.

            "If this company wants to do business, they would then need to come up with more favorable terms right? What am I missing here guys?"

            You honestly believe that the average Tanzanian farmer has the ability to to battle out contracts with multinational corporations to get themselves favourable contract terms?

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            • identicon
              Anonymous Coward, 10 Jan 2017 @ 6:14am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Horribly Misleading

              "one issue is cross-contamination"

              That is an issue agreed, but short of not allowing the company to do seed business at all in that country(which I'm fine with), there is no way around it right? Do we have an instance where these companies are claiming that they are owed money or the cross contamination has caused sickness or injury? If so, isn't that something their local politicians should be handling?

              "
              There's also the age old problem of tradition vs. protectionism. If the RIAA can't prevent people from sharing their songs, how do GMO companies stop farmers from sharing the seeds like they always have?"

              From what I've read, no one is saying they can't share seeds, just not the western companies seeds right? But then what about contaminated seeds. what happens when the genetically modified seeds get intermixed with the native seeds. I suppose if your using the modified seeds, then you would not be able to sell seeds. If you do not buy seeds from the western company, and your seeds become intermixed, then what footing would the western companies have? I would argue that the farmer has a case against the western company for his contaminated seed.

              "That's the issue here - it's corporations trying to insert protectionist rules that are completely at odds with how things have always worked before they came along - and then imposing massive penalties for them doing things that way."

              Then don't let them in!! The government of Tanzania didn't have to let them in. They didn't have to sign any deals. The companies are what they are. They will grab market share where ever possible, that is what they do. The governments are supposed to protect the people. I would argue this isn't a "western company" problem, this is a corrupt local government problem.

              "You honestly believe that the average Tanzanian farmer has the ability to to battle out contracts with multinational corporations to get themselves favourable contract terms?"

              Not at all. But I do expect their elected politicians, the ones making these one sided laws, to protect the people from these types of deals if they are indeed one sided.

              This sounds like a corrupt government problem, not a "western corporation" problem.

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              • icon
                PaulT (profile), 10 Jan 2017 @ 6:40am

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Horribly Misleading

                "That is an issue agreed, but short of not allowing the company to do seed business at all in that country(which I'm fine with), there is no way around it right?"

                The problem, ultimately, is the concept of giving exclusive rights to genes.

                "From what I've read, no one is saying they can't share seeds, just not the western companies seeds right? But then what about contaminated seeds. what happens when the genetically modified seeds get intermixed with the native seeds."

                Exactly. Given that the whole concept of the new crops is that they can thrive better in certain conditions, then it stands to reason that older crops will be overpowered by the new ones. Then, given that you're separating crops by whether they contain the patented genes, you can charge everyone for using your crops whether they wanted to or not.

                Depending on how conspiracy minded you are, this may or may not be a realistic representation of the current situation, but it's certainly one to be considered.

                "I would argue that the farmer has a case against the western company for his contaminated seed."

                Except, how do you prove that your crop was naturally contaminated, rather than you being contaminated by your neighbour illegally giving you seed? How do you defend yourself when the first you know of it is the attack from the corporation?

                "But I do expect their elected politicians, the ones making these one sided laws, to protect the people from these types of deals if they are indeed one sided."

                ...and when they don't, because they're getting bribed by those corporations or they're otherwise influencing those decisions in their favour?

                "This sounds like a corrupt government problem, not a "western corporation" problem."

                Why not both?

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                • identicon
                  Anonymous Coward, 10 Jan 2017 @ 7:12am

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Horribly Misleading

                  "Why not both?"

                  Because the company is doing what it does, trying to make money. Sure you can argue ethics, methods, etc etc. But the company is working within the confines of the laws that the politicians are making. The Tanzania Government could step in at any time and change/make a law more favorable for the farmers right?

                  I read the backstory on this company, it's not a very ethical or nice company, and the people that founded it don't seem to care who they step on. So I would put these guys in the dirt bag category no doubt. But I can't really blame them for doing what they do if they are doing so within the confines of the law.

                  The Government is supposed to protect the people, that is their job. They are allowing this to happen. IMO, they hold 100% of the blame.

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                  • identicon
                    I Love Capitalism, 10 Jan 2017 @ 7:14am

                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Horribly Misleading

                    But the company is working within the confines of the laws that the politicians are making.

                    Exactly! If you don't like the laws, go buy your own!

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                  • icon
                    PaulT (profile), 10 Jan 2017 @ 7:32am

                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Horribly Misleading

                    "But the company is working within the confines of the laws that the politicians are making"

                    ...which in this case are new laws, which are being bought by the corporations. Why should they not be responsible for this? I'm not saying that they take 100% of the blame, but you seem to be saying they should be allowed to do so without consequences.

                    "But I can't really blame them for doing what they do if they are doing so within the confines of the law."

                    If the only limit to your morals is "is it legal", then I still consider you to be an immoral person. I hold myself to a higher standard than whether someone's thought to pass a law against my actions yet, and huge numbers of innocent people suffer when corporations are not challenged for doing the same.

                    "They are allowing this to happen. IMO, they hold 100% of the blame."

                    So, you shouldn't be held responsible for your own actions as long as you convince someone to let you do it? You don't think that's a problem?

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                    • identicon
                      Anonymous Coward, 10 Jan 2017 @ 8:11am

                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Horribly Misleading

                      "...which in this case are new laws, which are being bought by the corporations. Why should they not be responsible for this? "

                      I think I see whats happening here. Your blaming the companies for the corruption of the politicians. The very Government that is supposed to be protecting the people, is making unfavorable deals with private corporations for some type of gain, and you think that is the fault of the corporations. Were just going to have to agree to disagree on this one. I put the blame squarely on the politicians for that, not the corporations.

                      "
                      If the only limit to your morals is "is it legal", then I still consider you to be an immoral person. I hold myself to a higher standard than whether someone's thought to pass a law against my actions yet, and huge numbers of innocent people suffer when corporations are not challenged for doing the same."

                      Ahhh.. and now the meat of the problem. I don't think like you do, so you consider me immoral. I see things a little differently than you do so therefor I'm bad. No middle ground, no compromise, just immoral. I thought I was having an intelligent conversation with you for a minute there... my apologies for wasting your time.

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                      • identicon
                        Anonymous Coward, 10 Jan 2017 @ 8:26am

                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Horribly Misleading

                        "
                        So, you shouldn't be held responsible for your own actions as long as you convince someone to let you do it? You don't think that's a problem?"

                        That is why we have a legal system. People don't all think, have the same morals, or define "bad" the same. The legal system is supposed to take care of drawing the lines. If you want to hold yourself to a higher standard, then I applaud you for it. But don't expect everyone else to do the same, and when they don't, by no means climb up on a moral high horse as it makes you look pompous.

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                      • identicon
                        Canuck, 10 Jan 2017 @ 9:31am

                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Horribly Misleading

                        "Your (sic) blaming the companies for the corruption of the politicians. Were (sic) just going to have to agree to disagree on this one. I put the blame squarely on the politicians for that, not the corporations."

                        All co-conspirators (corporate officers and politicians) are to blame and all should be held accountable.

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                      • icon
                        PaulT (profile), 11 Jan 2017 @ 3:26am

                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Horribly Misleading

                        "No middle ground, no compromise, just immoral"

                        You're supporting immoral activities, such as placing poor farmers into a virtual slavery to a private corporation - and waving away responsibility by saying "well, there's no law against it" and blaming everyone but the corporation committing the action.

                        Yes, I consider that immoral, and you immoral for holding that position. "Nobody's stopping me from exploiting the weak" is no excuse for doing so, never has been.

                        "I thought I was having an intelligent conversation"

                        You were until you decided to make such a dumb stance and then whine about being correctly called out.

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                        • identicon
                          Anonymous Coward, 11 Jan 2017 @ 5:22am

                          Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Horribly Misleading

                          "Yes, I consider that immoral, and you immoral for holding that position. "Nobody's stopping me from exploiting the weak" is no excuse for doing so, never has been."

                          This is why I rarely comment on this web site. You assume someone is trying to do something nefarious and refuse to see any side but your own. It's pathetic.

                          "
                          You were until you decided to make such a dumb stance and then whine about being correctly called out."

                          So insults and whining? That the best you got? You don't have an argument, so you resort to name calling? This place really has gone down hill.

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                          • icon
                            PaulT (profile), 11 Jan 2017 @ 7:09am

                            Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Horribly Misleading

                            " You assume someone is trying to do something nefarious and refuse to see any side but your own"

                            Because the side you have presented is either "these corporations should be absolved of all culpability for what they are doing, and we should blame the lawmakers 100% (even though they were probably paid off by the corporations" - or alternatively "everything is OK as long as it's not specifically illegal".

                            Those are pretty nefarious stances. If I'm wrong, present your argument, otherwise I'm not seeing any middle ground between those horrific stances and what i consider right and moral.

                            "So insults and whining?"

                            Yes, that's exactly what I'm seeing from you.

                            "You don't have an argument, so you resort to name calling?"

                            I have an argument and I have presented it. You started whining instead of presenting a counter argument.

                            "This place really has gone down hill."

                            Yeah, you people really get tiresome by derailing arguments whenever people point out the obvious fallacies in your words. Good riddance.

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                      • icon
                        PaulT (profile), 11 Jan 2017 @ 3:30am

                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Horribly Misleading

                        "I think I see whats happening here. Your blaming the companies for the corruption of the politicians."

                        Well, if you completely ignore what I actually said:

                        "I'm not saying that they take 100% of the blame, but you seem to be saying they should be allowed to do so without consequences"

                        But away with you, you obvious have no intelligent or moral stance upon which to base you opinions, and arguing with someone who thinks that anything is acceptable so long as nobody is actively stopping you is fairly pointless. Not when you pretend I've said something completely different in order to defend yourself against valid criticism.

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                        • identicon
                          Anonymous Coward, 11 Jan 2017 @ 5:24am

                          Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Horribly Misleading

                          The sad part is you don't even realize how pathetic you are. I actually feel sorry for you.

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                        • identicon
                          Anonymous Coward, 11 Jan 2017 @ 5:38am

                          Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Horribly Misleading

                          " and waving away responsibility by saying "well, there's no law against it" and blaming everyone but the corporation committing the action."

                          I didn't "wave away" responsibility. You are putting the responsibility on the corporations, I am putting the responsibility on the politicians. You are changing my argument to mean what you want it to mean instead of reading what I wrote. I never said it was right and correct. I said I put the blame on the politicians. Reading comprehension isn't your strong point is it?

                          Somehow in your mind, you have determined that I somehow agree with all this. You are arguing a point that is not real. I don't agree with this. I think it's a horrible deal. What I do think, beside the fact that your pathetic for resorting to name calling, is that the politicians hold the blame. The corporations are like children, they will get away with what they can get away with. It's up to the parent (politicians) to write the laws that keep them in check. If they fail to do so, if they get in bed with these monsters, then yes; I blame the politicians. You are welcome to blame the corporations if it makes you feel better, I disagree. That makes me immoral, a whiner, and dumb? What happened to this place?

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                          • icon
                            PaulT (profile), 11 Jan 2017 @ 7:13am

                            Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Horribly Misleading

                            "You are putting the responsibility on the corporations, I am putting the responsibility on the politicians. "

                            If you stopped whining and crying long enough to read my actual words, I am placing responsibility on BOTH. Is that really too hard for you to grasp?

                            "You are welcome to blame the corporations if it makes you feel better, I disagree."

                            You disagree that they should be blamed for their own actions, and you fail to see the problem with that. In fact, you attack me for stating that they should take some (and again NOT ALL) of the blame. Yet, you honestly can't see why that's a problem?

                            "What happened to this place?"

                            It started to attract people who enjoy attacking opinions other than the ones stated by the people they're whining about, apparently.

                            Now, try again, but attacking my actual stated opinions, preferably with an argument that doesn't depend on a false dichotomy.

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                            • identicon
                              Anonymous Coward, 11 Jan 2017 @ 9:28am

                              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Horribly Misleading

                              "but attacking my actual stated opinions, "

                              I don't want to attack your opinions. I understand why you think they way you think. You are entitled to your opinions, and I don't consider you immoral because of them. I just don't agree with you.


                              Read what you wrote. You attacked me remember?

                              "then I still consider you to be an immoral person. "

                              You called me immoral because I believe something different than you do. I believe the government should shoulder 100% of the blame. That doesn't mean I think what the corporation is doing is right, just that they are doing what they do and if they government doesn't do their job and keep them in check, they should be held 100% responsible.

                              I blame the governments, you blame the corporations. You can't leave it at that can you? You have to insult people that don't agree with you. Your like a child that can't be wrong, and will post however many times you need to post to both get in the last word, and convince yourself that your in the right. It's really pathetic, and a little sad.

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                            • identicon
                              Anonymous Coward, 11 Jan 2017 @ 9:30am

                              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Horribly Misleading

                              "but attacking my actual stated opinions, "

                              I don't want to attack your opinions. I understand why you think they way you think. You are entitled to your opinions, and I don't consider you immoral because of them. I just don't agree with you.


                              Read what you wrote. You attacked me remember?

                              "then I still consider you to be an immoral person. "

                              You called me immoral because I believe something different than you do. I believe the government should shoulder 100% of the blame. That doesn't mean I think what the corporation is doing is right, just that they are doing what they do and if they government doesn't do their job and keep them in check, they should be held 100% responsible.

                              I blame the governments, you blame the corporations. You can't leave it at that can you? You have to insult people that don't agree with you. Your like a child that can't be wrong, and will post however many times you need to post to both get in the last word, and convince yourself that your in the right. It's really pathetic, and a little sad.

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                              • icon
                                PaulT (profile), 12 Jan 2017 @ 12:17am

                                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Horribly Misleading

                                "I just don't agree with you."

                                Yes, I get that. That's why you started whining about me being mean to you the moment I addressed your assertions that corporations be allowed to ride roughshod over everybody's rights just because nobody's stopping them (a situation they most likely purchased to begin with).

                                I notice you've not made any defence of your assertions, addressed the reasons I've stated they're wrong, or even addressed the actual comments I've made about them *sharing* blame (you have to pretend I was absolving lawmakers instead).

                                Do you have any argument against my actual position, or are you content to whine like a baby because I dared question you?

                                "You called me immoral because I believe something different than you do"

                                No, I called you immoral because you stated an immoral position. If you had stated a position that was not immoral, I would not have reached that conclusion. It's a shame you're not honest enough to admit that and continue an adult debate rather than whine about me hurting your little feelings with that truth.

                                "if they government doesn't do their job and keep them in check, they should be held 100% responsible"

                                ...and again this is wrong. Corporations should not be absolved of their actions just because nobody stopped them. By definition, placing 100% of the blame on lawmakers places 0% of the blame on the corporations. Which is wrong, and a great way to encourage further immoral actions by the corporations. We should blame both, as I stated repeatedly no matter how much you pretend I didn't.

                                "Your like a child that can't be wrong"

                                Everyone's like a child to you, huh? Corporations, people who disagree with your assertions. Yet, you can't participate in an argument without whining that the other person is being mean to you.

                                "It's really pathetic, and a little sad."

                                You truly are.

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                                • identicon
                                  Anonymous Coward, 12 Jan 2017 @ 4:35am

                                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Horribly Misleading

                                  AHAHHAHAHA You couldn't do it could you? Thanks for proving my point troll. You have to be right, and you have to force your version of morality down everyone's throat. Your worse than the Bible thumping Right Wingers. You just can't be happy with agreeing to disagree. I didn't even read your post, it's not worth it. The fact that you posted said enough. You sir, are the worst kind troll out there. I'm going to bookmark this story, lets see how far down the rabbit hole your dumb ass will go.

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                                  • icon
                                    PaulT (profile), 12 Jan 2017 @ 4:50am

                                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Horribly Misleading

                                    Such a child. First you posit an extremely immoral point of view. Then you whine like a baby because I called you out on it. Then, post after post of you name calling and pulling a tantrum like a toddler because you couldn't stand being called immoral due to your immoral stated viewpoint.

                                    Yet, not a word in defence of your despicable immoral point of view. Only attempts to attack a point of view I never stated for myself, followed by you jettisoning even the pretence of wanting to act like a mature adult. All while pretend you're somehow the adult in the room, of course.

                                    You are truly pathetic, sir.

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                                    • identicon
                                      Anonymous Coward, 12 Jan 2017 @ 5:31am

                                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Horribly Misleading

                                      Still at it Troll? Your not done trying to force your morality onto other people? You deem something immoral so everyone else is a whiner and child. You can't agree to just disagree, you have to resort to name calling and insults. You are a pathetic excuse for a person.

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                                      • icon
                                        PaulT (profile), 12 Jan 2017 @ 6:41am

                                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Horribly Misleading

                                        "Your not done trying to force your morality onto other people?"

                                        No, because I only started doing that in your deranged imagination. I merely stated my opinion of what you said. You're free to disagree all you want, but you've ignored that option for some reason.

                                        You could have opted to disagree in a mature manner, explain why your stated position was not immoral or even taken the high road and ignored the word and continued the discussion. You chose a different path, and it's not a flattering one for you.

                                        Yet, you can't get over the use of a single word to correctly describe what you said. Now, you're having a complete meltdown because I used other accurate adjectives.

                                        "You deem something immoral so everyone else is a whiner and child"

                                        You are demonstrably whining, and you're the one who started calling others children. I'm sorry if accurate descriptions cause you mental anguish, but that doesn't invalidate them.

                                        "You are a pathetic excuse for a person."

                                        ...and that's a mirror you're ranting into now.

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                                        • identicon
                                          Anonymous Coward, 12 Jan 2017 @ 7:30am

                                          Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Horribly Misleading

                                          I stated my arguments clearly. Instead of agreeing to disagree you attacked me, then challenged me to attack you back. You can't even come to terms with what you wrote? It's like your pretending you didn't say what you said. Are you senile or something?

                                          "
                                          If the only limit to your morals is "is it legal", then I still consider you to be an immoral person. I hold myself to a higher standard than whether someone's thought to pass a law against my actions yet, and huge numbers of innocent people suffer when corporations are not challenged for doing the same."

                                          You are holding yourself to a higher standard than the law, and calling people immoral for not agreeing with you. It's that simple. If I don't agree with your views I'm bad. Your passing judgement like you are the standard. The hubris is so plain I honestly can't believe you don't see it. Actually; I'm willing to bet you do, you just can't admit it. So pathetic.

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                                            PaulT (profile), 12 Jan 2017 @ 8:17am

                                            Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Horribly Misleading

                                            "I stated my arguments clearly. Instead of agreeing to disagree you attacked me, then challenged me to attack you back. "

                                            No, you stated an immoral position, whined when I called it immoral and then refused my invitation to attack the statement rather than me personally. Rather than address the position, you claimed I said something different to what I'd actually said, then refused to explain why your position was not in fact immoral. Now you're even refusing to address the subject of the article because hurt your delicate feelings with a mean word. Poor baby.

                                            "You can't even come to terms with what you wrote?"

                                            I know what I wrote, and you have not supplied a single reason why I'm wrong other than that you automatically throw a fit over the use of one of those words.

                                            "You are holding yourself to a higher standard than the law, and calling people immoral for not agreeing with you."

                                            Yes, I consider it immoral to exploit poor people just because the law doesn't specifically say I shouldn't. You may disagree, but you haven't made a single argument as to why I shouldn't consider it immoral. I may have backed down, I may have been willing to redefine it (I could consider it amoral, rather than immoral, for example). Any adult debate would have been welcome.

                                            But, you chose the toddler tantrum route instead.

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                                              Anonymous Coward, 12 Jan 2017 @ 8:41am

                                              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Horribly Misleading

                                              You still don't get it do you? I realize your simple mind is having difficulty coming to terms with what morality is, let me help you. Morality is subjective. Different cultures and different people have different morals. Some believe in capital punishment, some do not. That doesn't make one side or the other immoral, it just means that on that particular subject, they differ. Like a child, you just throw out a blanket statement dismissing someone as Immoral, just like your "begone with you" comment. It shows a complete lack of tolerance of different point of views. Just because someone doesn't hold themselves to a higher standard on a specific issue, doesn't mean they are immoral my little snowflake. You need to grow up and learn how to disagree with someone, Or just like the rest of your zero tolerance extreme left nut jobs, you'll become irrelevant.

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                                                Anonymous Coward, 12 Jan 2017 @ 8:54am

                                                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Horribly Misleading

                                                ....Or just like the rest of your zero tolerance extreme left nut jobs, you'll become irrelevant.

                                                O wait, I think its already happened!

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                                                  PaulT (profile), 13 Jan 2017 @ 12:49am

                                                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Horribly Misleading

                                                  If I'm so irrelevant, why are you so obsessed with attacking me? You couldn't even wait 20 minutes before responding to yourself with a quip about an imagined position.

                                                  Also your political thrashing is hilarious. Let me guess - you're completely incapable of addressing a person's actual political beliefs and so have to label them one part of a false dichotomy. You have to attack a label, because real world issues are too complicated - probably because you go off the rails when someone correctly described your own positions. I'd love to know what you hallucinate my political beliefs as being. Other than my now well-documented dislike of people who support corporations exploiting Tanzanian farmers for profit without consequence, of course.

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                                                    Anonymous Coward, 13 Jan 2017 @ 4:29am

                                                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Horribly Misleading

                                                    blah blah blah. You don't have a supportable position so you attack me personally. You started this. You are the one calling people immoral. You climbed right up on your high horse and let it fly. You hold yourself to a higher standard and look down at all that do not as immoral. It's absolutely pathetic. YOU are pathetic. That is the reason your views, and the left (and yes I'm bringing in your political views because, I went to your profile and read enough of your post to know how militant left you are). I read once were you told a guy that if anyone didn't believe in the Left's "ideals" they were scum. It's absolutely pathetic, and again I take great joy in telling you that so lets keep this going. I've got nothing but time.

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                                                      PaulT (profile), 13 Jan 2017 @ 4:40am

                                                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Horribly Misleading

                                                      "You are the one calling people immoral"

                                                      Yes, you stated an immoral position, and I said that's how I saw it. Then, even though you now admit that morality is completely subjective, you chose not to discuss my view of your despicable views. You've chosen instead to whine like a little girl because I hurt your tiny little feelings.

                                                      You are easily the most pathetic human being I've had the misfortune of addressing here, and I've addressed some whiny little shits in my time.

                                                      "I read once were you told a guy that if anyone didn't believe in the Left's "ideals" they were scum"

                                                      Citation please. I know it pains you to be faced with the reality of your horrible personal views, but you don't get to invent shit about me.

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                                                        Anonymous Coward, 13 Jan 2017 @ 4:46am

                                                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Horribly Misleading

                                                        No citation, you look it up, I've read enough of your drivel. You are doing everything you can to side track this argument because you know your wrong. Your are a conceited child who thinks he's better than every one else. That everyone else is immoral that doesn't think as you do. It's really pathetic.

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                                                          PaulT (profile), 13 Jan 2017 @ 5:14am

                                                          Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Horribly Misleading

                                                          "No citation, you look it up"

                                                          I other words, you admit I said no such thing. I remember most of my comments here, but there's a lot of them and I may have said something I didn't mean or regret. Or, you could be making the whole thing up. I know which is more likely, sadly. A lack of honesty does tie into the whole lack of morals you display, so no surprise there.

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                                                        Anonymous Coward, 13 Jan 2017 @ 4:51am

                                                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Horribly Misleading

                                                        "Yes, I consider that immoral, and you immoral for holding that position."

                                                        You can't hide what you wrote. It's right there. I don't think as you do so I'm Immoral. I have a complete lack of morals because I hold a position on a single subject that doesn't agree with yours. It's childish and pathetic and is a blatant example of your conceit.

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                                                          PaulT (profile), 13 Jan 2017 @ 5:13am

                                                          Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Horribly Misleading

                                                          "I don't think as you do so I'm Immoral."

                                                          I disagree. this tantrum is because you can't discuss that difference of opinion for some reason.

                                                          "I have a complete lack of morals because I hold a position on a single subject that doesn't agree with yours"

                                                          Don't worry, I started by thinking of you as merely lacking in morals. I've picked up a number of other adjectives to describe you in the course of this display.

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                                                            Anonymous Coward, 13 Jan 2017 @ 10:16am

                                                            Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Horribly Misleading

                                                            "you can't discuss that difference of opinion for some reason."

                                                            What is there to discuss? You think I completely lack morals because of my position on a single issue. I think your bat-shit crazy single/simple minded and can't think past your own hubris. I think were pretty clear on our positions and have basically just resorted to name calling at this point. I've probably already let it go on for too long, but it both humors me, and ques my morbid curiosity of the lengths the wing-nut left will go to prove a point. You honestly cant stop, it's fascinating.

                                                            I'm reading some of your other posts you know. You really are bat-shit crazy. Your so anti-right pro-left you've forgotten how to think for yourself. I'm reading the comments on this story about Trump where some retard blames the left for "Birthers" and you bite hook-line-sinker going on an anti right tirade. Your like an extreme Right trolls dream. Here I'll link it since I'm in it. I'm not sure how to link to a specific point in an article, but you wrote it, you'll find it.


                                                            https://www.techdirt.com/articles/20170110/10214436454/trump-not-even-waiting-to-get-into-office- before-threatening-first-amendment-press-freedoms.shtml

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                                                              PaulT (profile), 17 Jan 2017 @ 2:25am

                                                              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Horribly Misleading

                                                              "What is there to discuss"

                                                              Subjective opinions, and the subject in hand. You have proven unwilling to do either.

                                                              "You think I completely lack morals because of my position on a single issue"

                                                              No, I believe you hold an extremely immoral position in one area, and that reflects badly on you. I don't know you, you insist on staying anonymous so I don't have prior posts outside of your toddler tantrum here to judge you by.

                                                              You could be a wholly moral and mature person outside of this thread, but I can only go on what's been presented. If you had not pitched a fit the second I used a word you didn't like, your other stances could have been discussed. But you threw your dummy out instead.

                                                              "You honestly cant stop, it's fascinating.

                                                              I'm reading some of your other posts you know."

                                                              Absolutely hilarious! You're literally obsessing not only over the words I've written in response to you, but years of comments I've left on other articles and subjects. Yet, I'm the one with the problem? How deluded can you really get?

                                                              "I'm not sure how to link to a specific point in an article, but you wrote it, you'll find it."

                                                              So, you're too dumb to work out how to copy the "link to this" link which is present on every comment? How much easier do you need it?

                                                              But, no I don't remember everything I wrote in years of commenting on this site. I did look and searched for what you claim I said, but ctrl+f scum shows zero results. Either you're paraphrasing (which is rather dishonest when you're attacking something specific I'm meant to have said), you're too incompetent to link the correct article or you're outright lying. Which is it?

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                                                                Anonymous Coward, 17 Jan 2017 @ 8:33am

                                                                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Horribly Misleading

                                                                "If the only limit to your morals is "is it legal", then I still consider you to be an immoral person."

                                                                "No, I believe you hold an extremely immoral position in one area, and that reflects badly on you. "

                                                                You can't even keep up with your own lies. Bat shit crazy! You called me immoral. You didn't say that my opinion was an immoral stance on a specific issue, you said you considered me an immoral person you lying schmuck.

                                                                Change your story if you want, I expect that from the left. You are now, and will always be a pathetic leftist who can't see past their own hypocritical one sided morality. I'm going to enjoy listening to the militant left cry for the next 4 to 8 years of Trump, almost as much as I've enjoyed listening to the militant Right cry about Obama.

                                                                I'm going to take great pleasure in reminding the Left about their failures. SCOTUS, both houses of Congress, the Presidency, and almost 1k state seats. REJECTED! LOL

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                                                                  PaulT (profile), 18 Jan 2017 @ 1:58am

                                                                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Horribly Misleading

                                                                  "You didn't say that my opinion was an immoral stance on a specific issue, you said you considered me an immoral person"

                                                                  Sadly, you're not intelligent enough to grasp this, but that's not a contradiction. You had presented one stance at that point, and I considered that immoral, therefore I consider you an immoral person. Absent knowledge of your stance on other issues, that's the take I have to have. You may have other moral standpoints that are better, but I don't know them yet. If I witness you stealing, I will consider you a thief, even if I later see you use your stolen goods to feed starving children and thus no longer consider you a criminal.

                                                                  I now consider you an obsessive whiny little lying shit as well, but that doesn't change my stance on your morality.

                                                                  "You are now, and will always be a pathetic leftist"

                                                                  A partisan idiot as well.

                                                                  "I'm going to take great pleasure in reminding the Left about their failures. SCOTUS, both houses of Congress, the Presidency, and almost 1k state seats. REJECTED! LOL"

                                                                  ...and unable to understand that the fact that I'm neither American nor resident in the US makes this a really, really stupid thing to be bringing up in relation to me. You really are dense, aren't you?

                                                                  Oh, and I notice you still don't provide citations for your lies about me either. What a sad little person you are.

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                                                                    Anonymous Coward, 18 Jan 2017 @ 7:50am

                                                                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Horribly Misleading

                                                                    Your not from the U.S. true, but you are a liberal and you are a leftist and your views and positions were firmly rejected in this country, and for good reason. I'm not a wing-nut right or wing-nut left. No partisan issues with me, I believe the answer is somewhere in the middle. I think that makes me a centrist no? I think your bat shit crazy left, just as I've called out the bible thumping bat shit crazy Right. Your both crazy hypocritical partisan liars.

                                                                    I disagree that it's a stupid thing to be bringing up. You spew your far left propaganda on this site every time you get the chance. Your a hypocritical leftist who can't even remember what he wrote in the same string.

                                                                    "Oh, and I notice you still don't provide citations for your lies about me either. What a sad little person you are."

                                                                    I gave you plenty of citations, I just don't give enough of a shit about you to post the hard to find ones. As a matter of fact, I'm just posting now to see how bat shit crazy you really are. It amuses me that you can't stop responding to me. Your like a child who's toy is just out of reach and who knows it, but won't stop jumping. Its funny, in a sad kinda way.

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                                                                      PaulT (profile), 18 Jan 2017 @ 8:26am

                                                                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Horribly Misleading

                                                                      "Your not from the U.S. true, but you are a liberal and you are a leftist and your views and positions were firmly rejected in this country"

                                                                      They were also rejected in North Korea, which is just as irrelevant.

                                                                      You see, this is why partisan politics is idiotic. You're not addressing any of my actual positions, you've just assigned me a "team" and you're trying to gloat because a country 3,000 miles away had an election where the "team" you imagine I'm on lost an election. You're probably stupid enough to think that American Democrats are on the same point of the political spectrum as any "leftist" party in Europe too, aren't you?

                                                                      I hope anyone still reading your drivel understands how utterly moronic this is, because your capacity for thought has clearly been exhausted.

                                                                      "I disagree that it's a stupid thing to be bringing up."

                                                                      Then why are you repeatedly doing it, given that all you're doing is illustrating your stupidity?

                                                                      "You spew your far left propaganda on this site every time you get the chance"

                                                                      I state my opinion, which any adult is able to refute using facts and real-life logic, not the hallucinatory toddler tantrum you're attempting. When you're not busy lying about what I supposedly think, anyway.

                                                                      "I gave you plenty of citations"

                                                                      Where? I see exactly one, which has absolutely nothing to do with the claim I asked a citation for. Stay off the drugs, or get on them, whichever one gets you dealing with the real world.

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                                                                        Anonymous Coward, 18 Jan 2017 @ 1:22pm

                                                                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Horribly Misleading

                                                                        Blah Blah.. same tired arguments from the same tired, simple minded, hypocritical, lying leftist. I don't care what your political view point is called in Spain, or the U.K., or wherever you are, it's called liberal left here. You post so many times a day, regardless how hard one tries, they can't help but to read your drivel if only by accident. It's militant simple minded liberal politics, and it's disgusting.

                                                                        "Yes, I consider that immoral, and you immoral for holding that position."

                                                                        Your hubris is sickening. We both think its wrong, but because I believe the blame falls with the government and not the corporations, I am Immoral. Your pathetic, your passing judgement is pathetic, your politics are pathetic, and I'm glad all of them have been rejected in this country.

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                                                                          PaulT (profile), 19 Jan 2017 @ 1:52am

                                                                          Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Horribly Misleading

                                                                          "Blah Blah.. same tired arguments from the same tired, simple minded, hypocritical, lying leftist."

                                                                          Facts do tend not to change when repeated, so I can see how it would get boring to someone who repeatedly lives in a fantasy world of his own choosing.

                                                                          "I don't care what your political view point is called in Spain, or the U.K., or wherever you are, it's called liberal left here"

                                                                          ...and I don't give 2 shits what it's called in the US. So what?

                                                                          I can however notice - no attempt to talk like an adult. Just whining about how a truthful statement offended you. No attempt to even state what the hell you are blathering on about, no citations for anything you claim about me and at least one outright lie. You are as dishonest as you are immature. You've not even attempted to discuss what I said truthfully about you, and abandoned polite discourse the second I criticised you. You've since gone on an endless stupid rant on a simple-minded reductionist version of politics that apparently confuses people who reject complexities in favour of a team game.

                                                                          You are the most pathetic human being I've ever had the misfortune to communicate with.

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                                                PaulT (profile), 13 Jan 2017 @ 12:45am

                                                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Horribly Misleading

                                                "Morality is subjective. "

                                                Yes, and I stated my subjective opinion about your lack of morals. Instead of debating them like an adult, you when on a toddler tantrum.

                                                All you've done is make me note a total lack of emotional maturity to your exhibited lack of moral compass.

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                                                  Anonymous Coward, 13 Jan 2017 @ 4:43am

                                                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Horribly Misleading

                                                  I don't need to debate my morals. I don't, and will never think like you do. You stated, that because I don't think like you do, that I am immoral. That is conceit in it's purist form. You think your better than others because you've drawn some imaginary line the sand where anyone under neath that line, is immoral. So you throw a blanket statement out there that someone is completely immoral, because their view differs than you on a specific subject. You are pathetic, and you will always be pathetic no matter how many times you post on this web site. That is an argument I expect to see from a child, not an adult.

                                                  The Militant Left in this country, who thinks exactly like you, got soundly rejected and had their cause set back for generations because of that same hubris. I bring that up not because it has any direct association with you being a pathetic child, but so you can see how many other Americans think like I do.

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                                                    PaulT (profile), 13 Jan 2017 @ 4:49am

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                                                    "I don't need to debate my morals. I don't, and will never think like you do. You stated, that because I don't think like you do, that I am immoral."

                                                    I did, and according to my personal subjective view of morality, that's exactly what you are. You can either accept that's what you are in my eyes or try to argue why I'm wrong. You've decided to cry about it instead, over and over and over. What a waste of skin you are.

                                                    Let me restate for the hard of thinking - I didn't say you have to think like me. In fact, I wouldn't want someone like you on my "side" even if I were dumb enough to think that politics is a team game. But your stunning lack of maturity and self control is entertaining.

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                                                      Anonymous Coward, 13 Jan 2017 @ 4:53am

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                                                      "I did, and according to my personal subjective view of morality, that's exactly what you are. "

                                                      There it is. That's probably as close as I'm ever going to get to you admitting your a pathetic conceded child who thinks he's better than every one else. It's not much, but I'll take it.

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                                                        PaulT (profile), 13 Jan 2017 @ 5:15am

                                                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Horribly Misleading

                                                        Better than you, sir, not everybody. But, I think anyone still reading this thread will work out that anyone capable of acting in a mature fashion is head and shoulders above you by a long stretch.

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                                      Anonymous Coward, 12 Jan 2017 @ 5:51am

                                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Horribly Misleading

                                      I may also add. Your aggressiveness in trying to force your morality on others is the exact reason the left got their asses absolutely handed to them in this country. They may never recover. It's a shame too, they had SOME ideas that I thought were half decent. But like yourself, they didn't know when to stop. They pushed and pushed until the American people reached the point they would rather Trump be president than a Democrat/Liberal. How sad is that? The American people have completely rejected the left. SCOTUS, Congress, White House, State Legislatures... hell even the liberal news media is getting their asses handed to them. All for the same reason. The reason your are demonstrating right now. But you snowflake, will never get it. That's ok. The American people do.

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                                        PaulT (profile), 12 Jan 2017 @ 6:43am

                                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Horribly Misleading

                                        ...and now instead of shutting you trap before it make you look even more like a fool, you've started going on a rant about politics in a country I neither live in nor have any control over. Even if it were true, it's totally irrelevant to anything outside of your deranged imagination.

                                        Is the truth really so painful to you that it causes you to have this kind of mental breakdown in public through the mere accurate use of a single word? Get help.

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                                          Anonymous Coward, 12 Jan 2017 @ 7:21am

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                                          I know were your from Paul. Your posting on an American web site. Don't like it? Post on a U.K. web site then.

                                          You, and the leftist extremists like you, are pathetic. The moral and political views you so forcefully try to cram down peoples throat have been categorically rejected In the U.S.

                                          I assure you, there is no breakdown. I'm enjoying the shit out of this. You can't let go, you can't stop posting, and you damn sure can't stop trying to force your morality onto other people. You absolutely hate the Right. I've read your posts, and I won't cite them as I'm way to lazy, where you accuse the Right (rightfully so) of shoving their gun toting, Bible Thumping, Right to life morals down everyone's throat, and here you are doing the exact same thing. It's pathetic, and somewhat comical at this point.

                                          You are the worst kind of hypocrite. One that knows they are a hypocrite, but who's hubris won't allow them to admit it.

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                                          • icon
                                            PaulT (profile), 12 Jan 2017 @ 8:11am

                                            Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Horribly Misleading

                                            "Your posting on an American web site. Don't like it? Post on a U.K. web site then. "

                                            No, I'm posting on an international forum that happens to have a US IP address, and on a story that's about Africa to boot. It's open to every country. Plus, by your logic I shouldn't post on a UK site either since I don't live there. Intelligent and consistent thinking is demonstrably not your strong suit.

                                            I will continue to post on websites all over the world that interest me, because this is the *world wide* web, not the closed-off hovel you apparently wish it were. I suggest you remove yourself from international discussions if you're so mindlessly territorial.

                                            "You can't let go, you can't stop posting"

                                            Every post I make is in response to something new you've posted. I can't let it go because the stream of ignorance and immature behaviour hasn't stopped yet. I'll stop when you grow up, get bored or I finish my work shift, whichever comes first

                                            "somewhat comical at this point"

                                            Now, this is indeed the truest thing you've said since you started your meltdown. A shame you can't apply accuracy to anything else you're saying.

                                            "I won't cite them as I'm way to lazy"

                                            Clearly. I just have to accept your word, but you lose your shit because I correctly define something. But, I'm the hypocritical one? A shame you're too lazy to use a dictionary.

                                            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                                            • identicon
                                              Anonymous Coward, 12 Jan 2017 @ 8:52am

                                              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Horribly Misleading

                                              You tried to dismiss my entire opinion, called me immoral, then proceeded to challenge me to attack you. That is the bottom line. It's something I expect a child to do, all this other crap your writing is just subterfuge.

                                              The bottom line is; You think that because I believe in the letter of the law, that I am completely immoral. That is your stated position. I think you are childish, and simple minded for thinking that way and gain great pleasure of reminding you of that opinion.

                                              I cannot even explain to you, the "thrill running up my leg -Chris Mathews" when I think about the sound rejection delivered to the left because of this very lack of tolerance. You are what we rejected, and for good reason.

                                              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 10 Jan 2017 @ 4:57am

      Re: Horribly Misleading

      " dramatically improve yields"

      This claim has been disputed, care to address that issue?

      Is there a real need for increased wield?
      (greed is not a real need)
      These civilizations were doing just fine till some foreigners started hawking their snake oil, bribing politicians and generally shitting all over the place. You can't just leave them alone huh.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 10 Jan 2017 @ 11:15am

      Re: Horribly Misleading

      Monsanto is the devil

      Their next step in genetic engineering will be to prevent the production of seeds in their 'patented' grown in nature plants, this will stop any farmers from trying to make a living from their own farming...

      All your farms are belonging to us... eventually, we are planting the seeds now... hahahaha I just can't help myself... I'll be here all week

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 10 Jan 2017 @ 4:22am

    So the Government of this country makes a underhanded deal with an organization that represents western corporations which ultimately hurts their constituents to the point where they may not be able to feed their families. Maybe they need MORE government? /s

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 10 Jan 2017 @ 4:37am

      Re:

      In furtherance of this, the more I read, the less "underhanded" the deal sounds. These companies develop "super seeds" and sell them. The farmers don't HAVE to buy them right? Can they still get their seeds from other sources?

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 10 Jan 2017 @ 5:02am

        Re: Re:

        That is the problem now isn't it?

        The gmo contaminates the native seed and then the corporate goons sneak onto the farmers land to take a sample for use in court where they demand ownership of the farmer's land in retribution for "stealing" their gmo bullshit.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 10 Jan 2017 @ 10:03am

        Re: Re:

        Per the article, "Under the new law, Tanzanian farmers risk a prison sentence of at least 12 years or a fine of over €205,300 [about $213,000], or both, if they sell seeds that are not certified."

        None of the Tanzanian farmers that have been doing this for the past several generations have "certified" (patented) their seed. This means, if they want to sell seeds, or trade them, or use them for anything other than personal food, they have to get their seed from Monsanto or Syngenta. They've essentially outlawed "open source" seed.

        Tanzania isn't like rural Connecticut. You can't be a "gentleman farmer" and have any other job. There isn't another job in the area that you can drive (assuming you have a car) to, work in the office for 8 hours, and go home to tend your crops. Their entire existence is invested in that farm. If it fails, their lives could be in jeopardy, as I doubt the government there provides a welfare safety hammock like they do in the more developed countries.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 10 Jan 2017 @ 12:07pm

          Re: Re: Re:

          "‘But who’s going to sell non-certified seeds? Small-scale farmers do not have the means to get a patent for their seeds’, says Janet Maro.

          “The government is working on a revision of the seed legislation. We hope that they will add an exception for small-scale farmers and will expand the Quality Declared Seed System,” says Michael Farrelly."

          Looks like they are working on a revision of the law that may help. I hope it does. I'm not suggesting this is a good or bad deal. I also can't pretend that in 20 minutes of research, I could really know whats going on. Based on what I'm reading, it looks like they are in a trial and error phase and they will be reviewing the program in a few years. Not sure if that is good or not, just what I'm reading.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Ninja (profile), 10 Jan 2017 @ 5:01am

    Death penalty, nothing less. Kill all the farmers for the heresy of infringing in holy Monsanto & friends patents.

    No really, at some point the bill is going to come down and we will make the companies pay.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 10 Jan 2017 @ 5:16am

      Re:

      " make the companies pay."

      I'm sure I'm being baited, but I'll bite. What do you mean pay? These guys developed a superior seed, and want to be paid for their product. No one is forcing anyone to buy their seeds. If you don't like the deal, buy your seeds somewhere else. Not one of these stories has anywhere in it where they are being FORCED to buy their seeds from these companies. These farmers were getting seeds long before this western company came into play, why not just go back to using those seeds? I'm really trying to wrap my head around the "evil western company" part of this and cant seem to find it.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 10 Jan 2017 @ 6:19am

        Re: Re:

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 10 Jan 2017 @ 7:39am

        Re: Re:

        This is what the patent system is all about. Incentive.

        Now that all the farmers have this "superseed" Monsanto, and others, who have benefited for a limited time, have incentive to develop an even better seed

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        Ninja (profile), 10 Jan 2017 @ 8:35am

        Re: Re:

        Yes and all the subsequent seeds produced are theirs as well, right? Sounds awesome. You have a round up ready problem in your own land already. Of course I wouldn't dream in changing your mind if you can't find even a small discomforting part in their behavior. Carry on, nothing to see here.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 10 Jan 2017 @ 10:06am

          Re: Re: Re:

          Of course I find discomfort in this, but I'm trying to figure out why that if the deal is so bad, people keep using their product. Why couldn't they just use other seeds? Nothing says they have to buy seeds from these guys right?

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    TRX (profile), 10 Jan 2017 @ 5:50am

    "But I'm a farmer! You owe me your product for free!"

    If they want the increased yield and pest resistance of Monsanto or Syngenta products, they should pay for them. If they don't want to pay for them, they're perfectly free to plant the same seeds their ancestors did. Nobody is stealing the bread from their children's mouths.

    What's next? They're going to demand free tractors and fuel? They rightfully deserve those as much as genetically modified seeds, right?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Jeremy2020 (profile), 10 Jan 2017 @ 6:36am

    Hey, look, another "help the poor" program that's actually about helping giant multinational corporations and the extremely wealthy.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 10 Jan 2017 @ 7:55am

    "...but the DNA that lies at their heart is in fact digital information..."

    That just means it is mathematical doesn't it?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Marie, 10 Jan 2017 @ 1:23pm

    Tanzanian farmers

    This is ridiculous! How dare conglomerates and big business try to muscle in on the Tanzanian farmers for their own greed! Leave them alone and let them do what they have always done! Time for a revolt, and for the farmers to start using organic methods of farming again, as they have always done.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 10 Jan 2017 @ 1:38pm

    Things have to get pretty bad for the populace to burn the establishment to the ground. It's like putting a frog in a pot of cool water and turning on the burner: when it finally dawns on you you are boiling all you can do is flail.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Monday (profile), 10 Jan 2017 @ 2:34pm

    Monsan who???

    Try to enforce this law. Monsanto is trying to re-colonize Africa - Tanzania in this instance - through the Tanzanian Legal System, and because Tanzanian Villagers have lived this Seed Co-operative existence for so, so many generations, you might just see revolution in some degree, if a Farmer is ever charged with an offense.

    I'm just saying...

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 10 Jan 2017 @ 3:02pm

    Spill your seed, go to jail

    "Under the new law, Tanzanian farmers risk a prison sentence of at least 12 years or a fine of over €205,300 [about $213,000], or both, if they sell seeds that are not certified."

    It's only a matter of time before the gene patent trolls come after you for passing on patented genes while making babies the old-fashioned way.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    LoveTD, 12 Jan 2017 @ 12:52am

    Turn it around

    Outlaw the Pesticide GMOs then sue Monsanto when it ain't off the property.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Paul, 16 Jan 2017 @ 5:35am

    Seeds and First Sale

    I had always thought that generically altered seeds would produce sterile plants.


    I don't understand how a patent can apply to prevent seeds that have been created by the plant. The seeds are not a derivative work and the farmer did not "create" the seed as a copy. How can infringement occur? If Monsanto did not prevent the 1st generation plant from producing seeds that could germinate that seems to be its own decision not to interfere with the natural reproduction system of the plant.

    There must be a contractual obligation created in the purchase agreement for the underlying seeds. However, as a contract it would be subject to the laws of the various jurisdictions (or the jurisdiction specified in the contract). It would be interesting to see if the underlying agreement clearly specifies this AND whether is properly presented so as to be enforceable against farmers who I (ignorantly) presume to be illiterate.

    How would this stand up with other genetic uses? For example, I sell you genetically altered sperm for a bull and you use it to artificially insimonate a cow. How does this restrict the use of any offspring of the 1st calf who was given birth by natural processes?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]


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