Monday, December 16, 2002

You may or may not recall the alleged legions of third world subsistence farmers who clamored for access to biotechnology in Johannesburg, giving a bullshit award to Vandana Shiva. Turns out that this was not exactly a grassroots campaign:
A powerful rebuke, no doubt. But if anyone deserves the cow dung, it is the President of BIO, for almost every element of the spectacle he describes has been carefully contrived and orchestrated. Take, for instance, Chengal Reddy, the "farmer" that [presented the award]. Reddy is not a poor farmer, nor even the representative of poor farmers. Indeed, there is precious little to suggest he is even well-disposed towards the poor. The "Indian Farmers Federation" that he leads is a lobby of big commercial farmers in Andhra Pradesh. On occasion Reddy has admitted to knowing very little about farming, having never farmed in his life. He is, in reality, a politician and businessman whose family are a prominent right-wing political force in Andhra Pradesh � his father having coined the saying, "There is only one thing Dalits (members of the untouchable caste) are good for, and that is being kicked".
If that is a little ad hominem for your taste, the article goes on to show that he has worked closely with Monsanto for years, and further details the fakery employed by Monsanto in fabricating their simulacrum of supporters.

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