It happens over and over again, but never ceases to amaze me. GMOs (Genetically Modified Organisms) are genetically altered seeds that make farming safer and more economic. One seed might require less water than the original, another might be pest resistant, require fewer pesticides and herbicides, and another able to withstand severe weather. In years to come they will produce more and more nutritious fruits and vegetables and other yet unimagined features. Chipotle restaurants announced last week that they would no longer use GMOs in any of their foods.
The world rejoiced when the first seeds were successfully developed. They were expected to help feed the hungry, to give enhanced nutrition to children and adults alike, and allow farmers to grow more with less work, fewer crop losses, while increasing arable land and yields. It has done exactly that. Better and better seeds are being developed every day, improving lives around the world. Who could object? True to form the Left has, with Chipotle being a loyal follower. Why, and what is the effect of this inexplicable decision?
GMO naysayers claim all manner of illnesses have plagued the world since their development. They talk about the possibility of catastrophic events (all imagined without any evidence) from GMOs gone wild. Of course this is the same as most of what the Left says, slanderous lies. There is not one case of illness attributable to GMOs, but there are millions of people who didn’t starve because of them. The Left creates authoritative looking documents by authors with impressive sounding credentials (credentials awards and degrees awarded by other Leftists) who are willing to speculate, exaggerate and outright lie. It is impossible to prove what will happen in the future, but these wonderful discoveries have led to better healthier lives for literally hundreds of millions people.
When Chipotle bans GMOs from their menu, they give credibility to baseless assertions, scaring people away from nutritious life saving foods. Chipotle’s action is a metaphor for the Leftist policies. All motives and policies are promoted as being for the good of mankind, claim to be based on science, yet most have devastating consequences worsening the condition they set out to correct.
Rudy Giuliani was elected Mayor of NY in 1993, a time when crime was so rampant the city was regarded by many as ungovernable. With his police commissioner Bill Braton they implemented the “broken windows” theory of crime prevention, where the police were instructed to go after minor crimes with the expectation major crimes would be reduced. The idea worked. I won’t explain why, but it worked unbelievably well. New York city went from one of the highest crime rates in the US to the lowest. The real estate market has boomed ever since because people from around the world want to go there. The cultural centers are healthier as is every business. Even with tax reductions tax revenues have skyrocketed. Prosperity is everywhere. So what is the radically left Mayor de Blasio proposing; to abandon broken windows and go back to the failed theories used in the bad old days. Just as quickly as the murder rate came down under Mayor Giuliani and Mayor Bloomberg, it will go up under de Blasio. The Left kills.
Have you heard that measles have made a comeback after decades of near extinction? Why? Because in the face of repeated studies by prestigious institutions consistently concluding the opposite, the Left claims that vaccines are bad for children. Parents who believe this have stopped vaccinating their children, and we have these unprecedented outbreaks as a result. Vaccines can have adverse effects, but they are well worth the risk when measured against mumps measles and polio. For whatever reason, Left could care less.
They advocate public policies which even a cursory examination would make clear are harmful to everyone. The Left has supported the Teachers Union and opposed charter schools and vouchers for decades, making all manner of fictional claims about how such policies (vouches and charter schools) would undermine a good education. Meanwhile they have increased school budgets every year for 40 years. During this time teachers salaries have gone up dramatically, work rule protections have gone up, and class room size has gone down. Yet education has steadily declined. More and more children fall farther and farther back in reading, mathematics, and life itself. The Left also destroys hope.
In 1965 Lyndon Johnson declared war on poverty. He began to subsidize everything from rent to food to medical care. Here we are 50 years later and poverty is alive and well, arguably more prevalent than it was then. Meantime all manner of social pathologies have developed, from drugs to out of wedlock births, to a murder rate never before experienced. One must understand that under the Left’s system, if someone collects welfare he cannot work or he will lose the benefit, and if he is on Medicaid he cannot save any money, or he will lose the small health protection it provides. These perverted incentives mean once someone is in the system it is almost impossible to get out.
The Left constantly advocates increasing the minimum wage, suggesting the only effect would be the employers would earn a little less. Of course the truth is far different. Minimum wage laws should be renamed “Unskilled and Youth Job Training Destruction Program,” because that is exactly what they do. These laws destroy jobs for those just entering the work force, denying the most needy, the most in need of job training, the opportunity to enter the middle class and lead productive, dignified lives. The worst part is that being frozen out of the work force leads to any number of social pathologies. “Idle hands are the devils workshop." Is it any wonder the growth in pathologies track very close to the growth in government subsidies and minimum wage? If I were a fourth generation welfare recipient, my career goal would likely be getting as much from government programs as possible. I would know nothing about the more fruitful career path of working productively. The War on Poverty has become a Poverty Prison.
Obama care is the law of the land. Forget the Presidential lies and bribes that birthed it, the Left claims there are 14 million fewer uninsured. They predicted that emergency room use would decline as these formerly uninsured using them would be able to go to Medicaid doctors. Emergency rooms are busier today than ever. There are weeks and months of waiting to see a Medicaid doctor because so few doctors will participate, so the formerly uninsured patient still goes to the same emergency room. Anyone who thinks the government can set up a health program (or any program) that works need look no farther than the Veteran’s Administration. Even after fraudulently compiling the figures making things appear less ugly than they are, the waiting times, maltreatment and deaths at the VA are still off the charts. The fact is one can look at any government program, and the execution is pathetic when compared to any comparable private sector effort.
But the Left plays their games on a far larger and a far more deadly scale. Communism was “based on science” according to the early advocates. They preached that nirvana was at hand if only people ceded their individual rights to the state, their property to the state (guns first and foremost), and renounced their faith in favor of the state. Stalin proceeded to kill 80 million people, Mao killed 60 million, Pol Pot 3 million, and an endless list of other tyrants selling the same garbage killed and imprisoned unfathomable numbers. The lucky ones were condemned to a life of poverty while the free world prospered.
Castro has kept his people in an island prison for 60 years, yet the Left toasts him as a hero. Che Guevara, his executioner, is for some unknown reason revered among progressives. When Chavez took over Venezuela he made the same promises every communist tyrant does. It was easily predictable that the economy would collapse, and of course it has. The point is that after this horrendous record, under banners ranging from communist and progressive to socialist and liberal, the Left has gained power while systematically destroying whatever it touched.
The only “communist" success was actually a capitalistic movement in China. After the death and devastation of Mao’s “great leap forward,” his name for the promise of communism, the country turned to capitalism. It has improved every aspect of the lives of a billion people, growing the economy from minuscule to the second largest in the world. For some reason China still maintains the communist label, but they anything but communists. 50 years ago Pinochet moved Chile from the devastation of Allende’s totalitarian communist rule (and poverty) to a free market system. Chile became the economic miracle of South America. In 1945 Argentina had a living standard equal to pre war France. The communist governments since have left them far behind their former economic equal. Look around the world. Look at history. Every time a country moves towards free markets, freedom soars as does the living standard, lifespans, and everything else a society strives for. Look at those countries who have moved away from free markets. Repression and economic failure has always been the best result, with death resulting for the more unfortunate.
Chipotle and their ilk (Starbucks, Whole Foods etc,) have a choice. They can jump on whatever bandwagon the Left is selling without regard to the consequences, or they can do some real good and stick to their business. If there is a need to enter into policy discussions, I would argue that in the long run the truth will serve them far better than leftist propaganda.