The "other" side

Chris J. Durden drdn at
Tue Aug 1 12:03:24 EDT 2000

Pierre is right.
  We remember the mistakes and deceptions of the chemical pesticide
industry. We are angry about the ecological effects of these mistakes and
deceptions. We should not vent our fury on poor old Paul who is merely a
footsoldier in this battle of technology. Let us go to the top and stop
capitalizing this industry.  Have you looked at your portfolio lately?
.........Chris Durden

At 05:16  1/08/00 -0700, you wrote:
>> How can we keep insects at bay?  Sure, we ought to share with our fellow
>> travelers on planet Earth, but at what point do we draw the line and tell
>> the Hessian fly that it can't have any more wheat--that we need it to feed
>> our children?
>Of course.  The problem is how we keep them at bay.  We complain when a
>hornworm eats our nice ripe tomato (OK, maybe it is not yet ripe).  How do we
>react?  We spray the !@#$%(*& out of it.  What we should do is either
leave it
>alone or make sure birds such as jays are welcome in our yards.  That way,
>bird has its dinner (breakfast, in some cases {-] ) and so do we.
>Unfortunately, spraying kills the bugs, thereby depriving the bird of its
>because many birds take only live prey.  A friend of mine who lived in Malibu
>some years back had mercury vapor lights at her house.  The neighborhood's
>roadrunners would regularly eat dozens of white-lined sphinxes on her porch
>(they numbered as high as 300 per night).
>> And how do we tell stalk borers and soybean loopers and brown planthoppers
>> to leave some for us?
>> Realistically, unless there is pest control, we probably cannot produce
>> enough food to keep the current human population alive.  Even drastic
>> methods of population control will take generations to bring the human
>> population back to the point where we can feed everyone without resorting
>> to pest control.
>There is pest control and then there is pest control.  Certain methods are
>garder on the environment than others.
>> Short of major catastrophe, which I hope no one wants to see, we are going
>> to have to accept the challenge of feeding the people of the world, even if
>> it means compromise with the ideal of living in harmony with nature.  If we
>> can feed the world's people while minimizing negative impact to the
>> environment, so much the better.  That's a noble goal if ever there was
>> one!  But we can't make the problem go away by maligning those among us
>> whose profession is to find a way to reach that goal . . . and that
>> includes work with pesticides, GMOs, cultural control methods, and plant
>> breeding.
>Right.  That goes for both sides of the situation.  Unfortunately, when a
>chemical company does not put all its cards on the table, we can't
>tell what is left in their hands.  When they badmoputh a conservationist's
>efforts to make sure the public is aware of some problem chemical or dtug,
>is not to its credit, either.  For example, DDT was, at first, touted as
>gift to anyone who wanted to put any number of bugs out of commission.  Look
>where it is now.  On every conservationist's hit list, together with who
>how many others since then.  What needs to be done is for the
manufacturers to
>do a more thorough, more conscientious job of determining the side-effects
of a
>chemical before putting it on the market (with a full and honest
description of
>the chemical), and then admit and correct their mistakes, preferably on their
>own, when they make them.  No more "Love Canals".  Tall order?  Yes!  Therein
>lies the crux of the matter.
>> P.S.  No time to proof-read (sorry!) so I hope there are not too many copy
>> errors.
>I did not see that many.

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