Trivia 116

Want another reason why I have no use for the information that the conservative media offers? To quote Jim Mitzefield, a reporter for the Gannett owned Detroit News, "There were times that they'd say, 'We don't have room for both sides, pick one side'". This is the same corporation that, when they first purchased the paper, told their employees who wanted to remain in their union that they should begin looking for another job immediately and then immediately cut all wages. When they purchased the San Jose Mercury Star, Gannett immediately forced the author of the reports of the CIA sponsored drug sales to write a retraction, even though absolutely no information was provided which refuted the reported charges. Once again, the lie of the "Liberal Media" is exposed for all but the most ignorant conservatives.

Even though I seldom discuss international news, this was too important to ignore. A July 7 U.N. General Assembly vote to upgrade the status of the Palestinian delegation was recorded at 124 for and only 4 against. The four no votes were submitted by the U.S., Israel, Micronesia and the Marshall Islands. The Associated Press, however, could only find room for quotes from the U.N. ambassadors from the U.S. and Israel. I suppose it might appear sophomoric to ask if America might just be in the wrong on such a huge issue affecting the entire peace process in the Middle East. Nevertheless, our blind obedience to a foreign policy controlled by the supporters of Israel may well be a primary cause of much of the world's terrorism against American targets.

Another example of why the news simply isn't fit to print these days comes from Fair's (Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting) magazine Extra. An unnamed NBC reporter, explaining where he received the information for his "scoop" that Secret Service personnel may have "facilitated" White House trysts he blathered, "We don't know whether that's Republican spin, partisan spin, ideological spin, or there's a germ of evidence." Not knowing if his "facts" were true didn't slow his reporting of the innuendoes on NBC Nightly News, which were then repeated in the Washington Post two days later as factual.

An excellent example of the double-speak that this Congress is perfecting is in the so- called "Patient Rights" bill recently passed. Bowing to their masters in the HMO industry, this bill removes any possibility of suing an HMO even if their actions or decisions cause permanent injury or even death. Instead, it created a "committee" made up solely of representatives from the same industry the committee is suppose to oversee. Anyone with even a tenuous grasp on reality recognizes that the future holds a great deal of frustration for anyone trying to force their HMO to act humanely. This bill also allows your HMO to provide all of your medical records to anyone at anytime without any need of your permission. This means that even records containing information about any communications between you and your mental health provider can be given to your employer or local law enforcement (with no need for a search warrant since they only need to ask to have your records legally available). Do you want your boss to have access to your private meetings with your psychologist? Would you like the possibility that a news reporter may be allowed to just wander through your entire medical history looking for something of interest? That may well be possible under this horrible example of Corporate America's strangle hold on the Republican Party.

Legislative director for the Citizen's Campaign for the Environment, William Cooke, speaking on the beliefs of Alfonso D'Amato of New York, "Every six years, he's an environmentalist."

Finally, that apple or orange that you ate today? Were you aware that it may been genetically altered in one of many ways that have never been tested by the FDA and shown to be safe? Here, then is your notice that you and every other American consumer have been volunteered by your government to blindly test these products completely without your knowledge or consent. Genetically altered potatoes (only with an "e" when plural Danny boy), tomatoes, soy, corn, squash and 28 other fruits and vegetables are now being sold to you every day without your consent or without even acknowledging it on their labels. According to the Center for Technology Assessment's Andrew Kimbell, Because of the failure to require labeling, millions of American infants, children and adults are consuming genetically engineered food products each day without their knowledge. By failing to require testing and labeling of genetically engineered foods, the FDA has made consumers unknowing guinea pigs for potentially harmful, unregulated food substances." He later states, "With each gene insertion there is the possibility that a nontoxic element in the food could become toxic and create a human health hazard."

This issue is far too important to leave to the morons at the FDA or, worse, Congress. This must be stopped immediately and the FDA must follow its original mandate of ensuring that no drugs or products can go to market before its safety is thoroughly tested. It is completely unacceptable that these serfs of Corporate America allow such a dangerous and unnecessary product to ever reach the stores let alone to be consumed by an unwitting public. You will never know if the illnesses or even the deaths of loved ones and neighbors are due to these altered products simply because their very existence is hidden from you by the very people you are meant to trust with your life. Want horrors like this to continue and even worsen? Go directly to the polls and vote Republican.

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Copyright 10/2/98