the non-toxic times

This article was included on a newsletter I get from seventh generation. Thought some you might like to read it also:
The Non-Toxic Times Newsletter
Vol. 8, No.8, June 2007
Proposed Laws (or Lack Thereof) Could End Up Playing With Your Food
If we are what we eat, we may be in trouble! That's according to recent headlines that suggest we don't have to look very hard to find any one of a number of troubling links in our nation's food chain. Toxic pet foods fed to pigs. Tainted spinach. Imported foods from countries with questionable safety records. Genetically modified staples. It's enough to give you indigestion, which makes this update on food legislation important food for thought.
Several important pieces of food legislation are currently pending in Congress. Together with one that was passed but remains ignored, they either constitute a full frontal assault on the safety of our food supply or its salvation depending on where the roll calls fall. Here's the run down, including how you can help stop or jump start each one:
. In late May, the House Subcommittee on Livestock, Dairy, and Poultry quietly added language to the upcoming 2007 Farm Bill that would pre-empt any and all state prohibitions against foods or other agricultural products that have been deregulated by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). The passage approved states that "no State or locality shall make any law prohibiting the use in commerce of an article that the Secretary of Agriculture has inspected and passed; or determined to be of non-regulated status." Observers say the added text targets several state laws that limit or prohibit the planting of genetically modified crops. This assault on states' rights and their abilities to raise the food safety bar higher than ground level, which is approximately where federal regulators currently have it, would also have the effect of preventing states from taking any action when food contamination incidents occur. Concerned consumers are being advised to demand that the subcommittee remove this language form the bill. To do that, visit http://ga3.org/campaign/House_Ag . For more information about the issue, visit http://www.centerforfoodsafety.org/FarmBill_preemptionPR5_24_07.cfm .
. Over at the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), officials have proposed new regulations that will eliminate labeling requirements for irradiated foods. Regulations currently in place require food companies to clearly label any foods that have been treated with x-ray or gamma radiation, a process which destroys vitamins and nutrients, creates unique new compounds never before eaten by human beings, and produces carcinogenic by-products like benzene. The proposed rules would take away consumers' right to know which foods they buy have been "nuked" and let food producers deal with the industry's currently widespread problem of bacterial contamination by taking a quick but dangerous radioactive shortcut. People who eat food (that would be all of us) are being asked to flood the FDA with comments opposing this toxic gift to agribusiness that comes at the people's expense. To do that, visit http://www.democracyinaction.org/dia/organizationsORG/oca/campaign.jsp?campaign_KEY 102. To learn more about the issue of food irradiation, visit http://www.organicconsumers.org/irradlink.cfm .
. In what is starting to sound like a broken record, regulators at the USDA once again can't resist the temptation to bow down before their corporate overlords and meddle with the National Organic Standards. The agency is considering allowing 38 non-organic spices, coloring agents, and other ingredients in foods designated "USDA Organic." Current regulations allow any food product with at least 95% certified organic ingredients to be labeled organic as long as the remaining 5% or less of non-organic ingredients appear on a special USDA list of approved non-organic items that may be used because they are generally not available commercially in organic form. The agency is considering expanding this list to include such things as non-organic hops, dill weed, elderberry juice and annatto coloring agents, sausage casings, and fructooligosaccharides, a bulking agent. According to farmers, 90% of the ingredients on the list can be easily produced organically. And while food producers had two years to petition the USDA to include a specific ingredient on the revised list, the public had a mere seven days to comment on the proposed rule changes. That comment period has passed and as of this writing the USDA appears ready to amend the list. Citizens are advised to contact their congressional delegation and protest the changes to the National Organic Standards and to send their comments to Secretary of Agriculture Mike Johanns even though the comment period has ended. To do that and learn more, visit http://www.democracyinaction.org/dia/organizationsORG/oca/campaign.jsp?campaign_KEY 401.
. Finally, activists are demanding that Congress stop blocking implementation of mandatory Country of Origin Labels (COOL) on foods. COOL legislation was part of the 2002 Farm Bill and was to go into effect in September of 2004. The law would require all food products to label their country of origin. These labels would give consumers concerned about things like food contamination, suspect "organic" foods, global warming-linked long-distance food transportation, the use of pesticides illegal in the U.S., countries with poor food safety records and questionable production practices, and other serious food issues the information they need to make better choices. Unfortunately agribusiness interests and large chains like Wal-Mart have convinced Congress to block implementation of the rules. Send a letter to your congressional delegation demanding that the COOL law be allowed to take effect at http://www.democracyinaction.org/dia/organizationsORG/oca/campaign.jsp?campaign_KEY 257.
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On Fri, 22 Jun 2007 11:29:35 -0400, "Rachael Simpson"

Good find, Rae.
Thanks for the post.
Charlie
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Gives new meaning to grow our own.
Bill who shakes his head when Food laws exist.
http://preview.tinyurl.com/2vmowr
PS Soylent Green
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On Fri, 22 Jun 2007 12:57:17 -0400, William Wagner

from: http://www.straightgoods.ca/ViewFeature7.cfm?REF28
Imposters shock oil conference
"Yes Men" propose burning humanity as "vivoleum" fuel in case of climate calamity.
Charlie
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Life imitates art comes to mind.
Ok Ok I'm going to grow horse corn but just leave me and my Dad alone. We have so many impurities that the distilling process would not be economical.
Ah a real strawberry Juice and smell Smooth yet rough Taste that speaks of summer.
Bill
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In article < snipped-for-privacy@sn-indi.vsrv-sjc.supernews .net>,

Sail On Sail On Beach Boys
Bill
Stolen from those folks over in SMC. .....................
Oxymoron department: Wall Street Journal -- "Phillip Morris Gears Up For FDA Regulation: Using Science, It Tries To Prove Its Products Can Be Lower-Risk"
More options Jun 21, 3:14pm RICHMOND, Va. -- At a research park that's home to several biotech companies, a $350 million facility under construction will soon house hundreds of researchers. But instead of testing lifesaving medicines, these scientists will be focused on a product that kills an estimated 438,000 Americans a year. The facility, due to open in August, is owned by Philip Morris USA, the nation's biggest tobacco company. The Altria Group Inc. unit is preparing for a tectonic change -- regulation of tobacco by the Food and Drug Administration. With Democrats in charge of Congress, the long-debated step appears more likely than ever. A Senate bill is expected to clear a key committee next month, and companion legislation has been introduced in the House. Both bills would give the FDA broad sway over tobacco products, including the power to set product standards, which could include limiting certain ingredients in cigarettes. Tobacco makers, whose products have been largely unregulated, would have to turn over to the agency extensive information about their products. The bills also dangle a potentially lucrative opportunity. They say that if a new kind of cigarette can be scientifically proven to "significantly reduce harm" to smokers -- and its availability would also benefit the health of "the population as a whole" -- the cigarette's marketing claims may win approval from the FDA. The legislation, which is backed by longtime tobacco-industry critics Rep. Henry Waxman of California and Sen. Edward Kennedy of Massachusetts, has won wide support from public-health advocates. But many advocates warn that the FDA needs to be very careful about allowing any health-related marketing. "We must be extremely wary of claims made by manufacturers," says Kenneth Warner, dean of the University of Michigan School of Public Health. Dr. Warner serves on a Pfizer Inc. advisory board that examines tobacco policy issues, and turns the honorarium over to his university. Pfizer makes the smoking- cessation drug Chantix. Philip Morris, which is working on a slew of new products it hopes might qualify for FDA-approved health claims, acknowledges it must transform itself into a credible player in the expected scientific debates at the FDA. So the company is trying to emulate an industry already under the agency's purview -- the drug companies. The company has a number of highly engineered products in the works, all of which are designed to possibly reduce tobacco's dangers. Among them: Marlboro Ultra Smooth, a cigarette with a high-technology carbon filter; Accord, which uses a holder to primarily heat, rather than burn, tobacco; and snus, a line of "spit-free" smokeless tobacco products. So far, the products aren't selling well in test markets, Philip Morris confirms, possibly because they aren't being pitched as having any health advantages. Philip Morris hasn't announced when, or if, any of them might be sold nationally. Analysts say the effort is consuming about half of the estimated $200 million Philip Morris spends on research and development each year. Philip Morris scientists are conducting human studies, presenting results at research conferences and publishing findings in scientific journals such as the Journal of Clinical Pharmacology. To staff its 450,000-square-foot research center, its biggest investment in two decades, Philip Morris is trying to recruit dozens of physicians, biochemists, and other scientists. And in the same way that pharmaceutical companies pay top researchers to lead drug studies and speak about their findings to regulators and other scientists, the tobacco maker is trying to forge relationships with outside experts who might support Philip Morris's research efforts. The company faces immense technical hurdles in its quest to develop an FDA-approved lower-risk cigarette. Scientists say there aren't proven measures that would allow Philip Morris to verify that any new kind of tobacco product is less likely to cause cancer or heart disease. Cigarette smoke contains thousands of different components, many of which are known to be toxic. And testing a cigarette is far different from testing a cholesterol drug. A big problem for Philip Morris may be its reputation. For many years, tobacco companies denied the health risks of their products, quietly funding research that ran counter to scientific opinion. They peddled "light" cigarettes with implied health benefits when, under real-world conditions, the products were generally no safer than standard smokes. As a result, Philip Morris faces many deeply suspicious public-health experts. Many of them believe its efforts are at best, empty public- relations gestures and at worst, manipulative. "The industry has no credibility with the scientific community and the FDA," says David Kessler, a former FDA commissioner whose efforts in the 1990s to regulate tobacco were struck down by the Supreme Court. If there are to be reduced-risk tobacco standards, he says, "the opinion leaders that are going to develop the science are not going to be the tobacco industry." Dr. Kessler says he has made tobacco-policy speeches in the past and accepted honoraria from pharmaceutical companies that make smoking-cessation products. While they have been reaching out to outside scientists and medical researchers who can review their own reduced-harm product research, Philip Morris's rivals haven't done as much to ready themselves for regulation. In the eyes of some Wall Street analysts, Philip Morris's efforts are a gamble. Not only might the bills fail to become law, but it might be decades before cigarette makers are able to amass enough scientific data for reduced-risk products to pass muster with the FDA. Philip Morris is "making a sizeable and substantial investment, particularly versus the outlay of their peers," says David Adelman, Morgan Stanley's tobacco analyst. The risk, he adds, is that the company's newfangled products flop, and "the time, energy and resources have been wasted." Philip Morris says it has no choice but to pursue its high-risk strategy. Last year, it sold an estimated 183.4 billion cigarettes -- roughly one of every two smoked in America. But per-capita adult cigarette consumption plummeted 19% between 2001 and 2006, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. "We're doing this because we think it's in the interest of our business," says John R. Nelson, president of operations and technology at Philip Morris USA. The company began beefing up its research operations around 2000. At first, the work was mostly done through outside contractors. "It was an infrastructure that we had never done, and really didn't exist" at Philip Morris, says Jane Y. Lewis, vice president of product assessment at Philip Morris USA. One challenge for the company was designing the human studies it would need to satisfy health agencies. Since it would be unethical to force cigarettes on study participants who elect to quit, Philip Morris officials say they pay people fully for their time, even if participants decide to stop smoking halfway through a trial. Because certain results can be blurred by the food subjects eat, company researchers have also begun studies in which smokers stay in a facility for a period of time. That way, Philip Morris researchers can control and monitor subjects' diets. Another reason to have smokers stay at a facility -- the new research center will have roughly 30 beds, so smokers can spend the night -- is that Philip Morris researchers are able to control the number of cigarettes subjects smoke in a day, Ms. Lewis says. Still, she notes, "we don't control how they smoke." The way smokers puff, or even how they hold a cigarette, can affect how much nicotine and other toxins they consume. For one prototype of Accord, which uses a battery-operated holder to heat the tobacco, the company ran short-term studies in humans beginning in 2001. It also followed consumers for as long as a year. In 2002, Philip Morris started an ambitious, yearlong examination of American smokers, the Total Exposure Study, to help answer questions about the effects of cigarettes. The study eventually involved 4,662 people at about 40 sites across the U.S. Scientists gathered data about more than a dozen measures that might reveal the impact of exposure to cigarette smoke. Smokers had their blood checked for the presence of carbon monoxide and markers that signal heart risk, such as cholesterol and a protein that is a sign of inflammation. Urine was tested for an array of chemicals that might be signs of cancer-causing substances. These data could eventually serve as a baseline, giving a picture of what measures best highlight the differences between a smoker's body and a nonsmoker's body, company officials say. Many public-health researchers, while conceding that the research could prove useful, say they're wary of furthering Philip Morris's agenda. They also fear the peddling of a "safer" cigarette could discourage smokers from quitting, ultimately the safest option. Tobacco companies "have a long and successful track record of subverting people in public health," says David Burns, a professor at the University of California, San Diego, who has testified against tobacco companies in court and says he refused an invitation from Philip Morris to apply for research grants. "We have to be very careful that we maintain both objectivity and independence." Philip Morris's Mr. Nelson says the company is committed to trying to work with researchers who have opposed it. "Some of our critics have a lot of constructive things to say, some are a little shrill, but we listen, and we talk," he says. One of the company's efforts -- hiring the Life Sciences Research Office in Bethesda, Md. -- has already sparked controversy. A nonprofit founded to conduct research for the Army, it has done work under contract for the FDA, as well as such projects as weighing the evidence of walnuts' health benefits for a group of walnut growers. In 2004, Life Sciences began a Philip Morris project that focused on reviewing research from tobacco companies and others related to potential reduced-risk products, with the goal of figuring out what evidence was needed to prove reduced-risk claims. The nonprofit says it reached out to about 1,000 scientists and organizations, seeking recommendations on what questions to address and who might serve on panels that would conduct the review. It also invited scientists to submit research and participate in meetings. Some tobacco-industry opponents informally boycotted the process, declining invitations to join the Philip Morris-funded scientific panel or speak to the group. "I'm not going to lend my name to the perception and credibility of the company," says Mitch Zeller, an FDA official under Dr. Kessler who says he declined to participate in the nonprofit's work. Mr. Zeller consults for drug maker GlaxoSmithKline PLC on its smoking-cessation products. Some "of these folks just don't want to participate in company-funded projects," says Philip Morris's Mr. Nelson, adding the organization's work was transparent and independent. Life Sciences' findings, issued in April, appear to be a win for Philip Morris. The organization's main outside panel concluded that it's possible to generate data to "assess differences in risks of adverse health effects" between tobacco products. It endorsed the idea of reduced-risk claims, arguing that information about potentially safer products is being withheld from the public. The choice may be whether "some good is better than none at all," the report says. The conclusion clashes with views of a number of public-health researchers, who say the science isn't developed enough to justify reduced-risk claims for tobacco products. Earlier this month, two University of California-San Francisco researchers published a paper in Tobacco Control, an antitobacco journal, accusing Life Sciences of downplaying or concealing its "true level of involvement" with the tobacco giant. It warned that Life Sciences may not be fully independent, saying that some members of the nonprofit's outside panels have had financial relationships with tobacco companies. "Anytime you come out with a conclusion that someone doesn't agree with, the whole process is called into question," says Michael Falk, Life Sciences' executive director. Dr. Falk says the nonprofit's process was transparent, and that it didn't find professional or scientific conflicts of interest among the people it allowed on the tobacco review panels. A spokesman for Philip Morris said it is still reviewing the results of Life Sciences' report. With its new research center a few weeks away from completion, Philip Morris is trying to persuade scientists with a range of backgrounds, including pharmacologists and neurologists, to join the staff of a tobacco company. Mr. Nelson says the facilities will have labs and offices for at least 300 scientists and engineers. "We're still looking around to hire people," he notes. In August, the company launched a careers Web site intended to attract potential applicants. The site has a link to an artist's rendering of the completed center, alongside photos and testimonials from current employees. On the Web site, physician Barbara Zedler says that "to work on projects that may potentially reduce the health risks associated with smoking is both challenging and exciting," and the company is "eager for us to succeed." She conducts studies of Philip Morris products on smokers. Another testimonial, from "Kimberly," a molecular biologist, says "going to work for a tobacco company was a total leap for me." But, the text says, she believes her work "has the potential to positively impact public health." Write to Anna Wilde Mathews at snipped-for-privacy@wsj.com and Vanessa O'Connell at vanessa.o' snipped-for-privacy@wsj.com * * * Tobacco Control 2007;16:157-164; doi:10.1136/tc.2006.017186 Old ways, new means: tobacco industry funding of academic and private sector scientists since the Master Settlement Agreement Suzaynn F Schick and Stanton A Glantz Center for Tobacco Control Research and Education, University of California San Francisco, San Francisco, California, USA ABSTRACT When, as a condition of the Master Settlement Agreement (MSA) in 1998, US tobacco companies disbanded the Council for Tobacco Research and the Center for Indoor Air Research, they lost a vital connection to scientists in academia and the private sector. The aim of this paper was to investigate two new research projects funded by US tobacco companies by analysis of internal tobacco industry documents now available at the University of California San Francisco (San Francisco, California, USA) Legacy tobacco documents library, other websites and the open scientific literature. Since the MSA, individual US tobacco companies have replaced their industry-wide collaborative granting organisations with new, individual research programmes. Philip Morris has funded a directed research project through the non- profit Life Sciences Research Office, and British American Tobacco and its US subsidiary Brown and Williamson have funded the non-profit Institute for Science and Health. Both of these organisations have downplayed or concealed their true level of involvement with the tobacco industry. Both organisations have key members with significant and long-standing financial relationships with the tobacco industry. Regulatory officials and policy makers need to be aware that the studies these groups publish may not be as independent as they seem. * * * Presentations Philip Morris made to Life Sciences Research Office in 2005 as it was preparing for a project to measure risk reduction. Includes details on the company's Total Exposure Study of risks to adult U.S. smokers. http://www.lsro.org/rrrvw/meetings/cc_2005_10_19/presentations.html
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On Fri, 22 Jun 2007 14:48:43 -0400, William Wagner

heh heh

Yours?
Sigh..........
Seems as if "science" has become the province of charlatans.
Charlie
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Mine now everyones.
Bill
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On Fri, 22 Jun 2007 19:05:41 -0400, William Wagner

Nice. It works.
Charlie
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On Fri, 22 Jun 2007 11:29:35 -0400, "Rachael Simpson"

Hey.....it just dawned on me what Seventh Generation is.
The HyVee just started carrying the products.......I think. Will check in the morning when I go after the paper. Will buy some of the baby clothes wash if they have it. Have clothes and bedding that needs washing.
No, he hasn't arrived yet. Her due date is not until the 27th, she is just impatient.......duh. What is it they say....pregnancy is eight months and one year (one year being the ninth month)?
Later Charlie
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<Charlie> wrote in message wrote:

In the meantime, I have taken to making my own "green" household cleaners. It's cheaper and safer to do it that way.
If you can't find any baby detergent from Seventh Generation, see if your local grocery carries Baby Purex, it's better than the other big-name baby detergents and it's a lot cheaper. Just a suggestion..........

"full-term" pregnancy, it is actually 10 months instead of nine. Tell her it could be worse, I carried Breanna 4 weeks past her due date!

Cooking breakfast - better get back to it! Rae
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On Sun, 24 Jun 2007 08:35:47 -0400, "Rachael Simpson"

Yep, the HyVee is now carrying the Seventh Generation line. I got the clothes wash.
Yeah, it is counted differently than when we were having babies.
Four weeks past? Yow.......I'll bet you were fun to be around! ;-)
Speaking of, she just came in......and she looks really uncomfortable still.
Charlie
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Now don't you go disagreeing with her, on anything. I don't care if you have good health insurance. I just don't like visiting folks in hospital.
Oh, if you are a spectator, nine months is just an average for 8 - 10 months.
Keeps reminding me that if people knew what they were getting into having kids, the human race would have ended a long time ago.
If she is like we were, she'll party for two days afterward and then collapse.
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Billy
Coloribus gustibus non disputatum (mostly)
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