November 15th, 2004

patriot, veteran, liberal, politics

Sensible Farming Practices Outlawed In U.S. Client State.

Thanx araquan

Iraq law Requires Seed Licenses

Iraqi Farmers Aren't Celebrating World Food Day

Iraq's new patent law: A declaration of war against farmers

Iraqi farmers can no longer save seeds for next year's crop. They must buy genetically-modified seeds from American agrobusineses.

Suddenly, reasonable, sensible, pragmatic practices dating back before the dawn of human history have become illegal.

If you want to see Corporate America's wet dream for the U.S. and the world, look at what they're doing in Iraq. We didn't invade just for the oil Weapons of Mass Destruction; the entire "reconstruction" effort is directed at turning the country into a corporate haven, a laboratory of experimental subjects testing their dreams of unfettered expansion and captive consumers.

No, they haven't pushed such agricultural monopoly laws into effect in the U.S. -- they haven't had to. They've had most of a century to make the American farmer entirely dependent on them for seed, fertilizer, pesticides, and other designer accessories. They've got the same kind of "Intellectual Property Rights" on their GM seeds here; they just haven't had to outlaw other seed sources, since 90% or more of their target market is already so tightly bound up in their product chain.

This is the New Feudalism. The serfs may technically own the land, and they may even be allowed to sell what they grow -- but they are legally obligated to buy seeds from the Corporate Overlords. This is sharecropping. This is indentured servitude. Oh, yes, I'm sure the agricorps will provide generous lines of credit to the poor Iraqi farmers who need it.

You grow sixteen tons, and what d'you get?
Another day older and deeper in debt
Saint Peter, don't you call me, 'cause I can't go
I owe my soul to the company store...
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weird science, Eye: RCA Magic Eye, tech

Talkin' 'Bout My Generation

A writer and teacher gives tribute to D&D.

Our influence is now everywhere. My generation of gamers -- whose youths were spent holed up in paneled wood basements crafting identities, mythologies, and geographies with a few lead figurines -- are the filmmakers, computer programmers, writers, DJs, and musicians of today. I think, for the producers, the movie version of "The Lord of the Rings" was less about getting the trilogy off the page and onto the screen than it was a vicarious thrill, a gift to the millions of us who wished we could have dressed up as orcs and ventured into catacombs and castle keeps ourselves. Only a generation of imaginations roused by role playing could have made those movies possible.
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