Political Radar

Five for fighting

September 12th, 2013

Syngenta Hawaii, the biotechnology firm, spent the most on lobbying during the second half of the legislative session, according to the state Ethics Commission.

Biotechnology companies fought off a bill that would have set labeling requirements on genetically modified produce sold in the state.

Overall, interest groups spent $1.1 million on lobbying from March 1 through April 30. Here are the top five spenders:

*Syngenta Hawaii -- $50,000

*Altria Client Services (tobacco) -- $40,836

*Blue Planet -- $35,148

*Technicolor (film industry) -- $31,707

*Hawaii Medical Service Association -- $28,441

During the first half of the session, gay rights advocates who unsuccessfully pushed for a marriage equality bill topped the lobbying list. (Gov. Neil Abercrombie, responding to U.S. Supreme Court rulings in June that legally married gay couples are entitled to federal benefits, has called lawmakers back for a special session in late October to consider a gay marriage bill.)

Interest groups spent $998,375 on lobbying from January 1 through Feb. 28. Here are the top five:

*Equality of Hawaii -- $87,672; Equality Hawaii Inc. -- $10,471; Total -- $98,143

*Altria Client Services (tobacco) -- $50,552

*Hawaii Tourism Authority -- $42,500

*Hawaii Medical Service Association -- $27,189

*American Beverage Association -- $26,980

10 Responses to “Five for fighting”

  1. kentfonoimoana:

    Now all the SA needs to do is publish the names of the political leaders or Gov't. officials that took the lobbyist's money.

  2. Sayer:

    If GE foods are so great, you'd think they'd LOVE to have them labeled as such rather than fighting it. After all, I've never heard of a company complaining about the cost of putting "heart healthy" or "cholesterol free", etc. on their packages.

  3. Auto de Fe:

    Food warning labels are reserved for health hazards. To label GMOs is to falsely imply that GMOs are a health hazard. They are not.

  4. KKawa:

    Why is the Hawaii Tourism Authority (funded by taxpayer dollars) hiring lobbyists to try and get MORE taxpayer dollars? Think if every government agency did this !

  5. ohiaforest3400:

    Sayer, at least some would say it's not about the cost of labeling, it's about the content of the label. The FDA does not allow "cholesterol-free" or "Heart-healthy" designations without science to back it up. As Auto de Fe suggests, a "Contains GMOs" label denotes nothing scientifically positive or negative but connotes something emotionally negative due to the current overheated controversies.

    It seems to me that the argument is fundamentally whether something must be proven harmful before it may be excluded from food (pro-GMO position) or must be proven harmless before it may be included in food (anti-GMO position). Until that issue is resolved, it seems to me that the labeling issue is a sideshow.

    If the proponents of labeling really want to provide their supporters with information about the food they are eating, they should either: (1) push for laws permitting "GMO-free" labeling; and/or (2) take the position that, if it is not labeled "GMO-free", it should be assumed to contain GMOs and proceed accordingly.

  6. douglas maguire:

    kkawa, How much the water board spend to lobby at the state capitol over a couple of years? hundreds of thousands of dollars . AND it was legal. nestor garcia serving as an elected officialFOR ROUGHLY 50,000 DOLLARS A YEAR, also as a director of a local chamber of commerce AND A QUOTE UNQUOTE SECUIRITY JOB WOTH A WELL KNOWN RAIL CONTRACTOR

  7. Especially Incognito:

    "3. Harmful Chemicals In Molasses

    Most of the chemicals which are used in the refining process of cane sugar eventually find their way into the waste residue which is the molasses. Therefore, you not only have the harmful effects of the sugar but also of the toxic chemicals which are used in its manufacture. We will take a look at some of the chemicals.

    3.1 Sulphur Dioxide

    Sulphur dioxide is a chemical compound of sulphur and oxygen, having antioxidant properties. It is sometimes used in food for control of discoloration.

    An antioxidant is a substance that prevents or delays oxidation—a substance capable of chemically protecting other substances from uniting with oxygen. It is one of the most common groups of additives used to prevent change in color or flavor caused by oxygen in the air. For example, some fruits and vegetables containing certain enzymes (such as apples, apricots, bananas, cherries, peaches, pears and potatoes), darken when exposed to air after being cut, bruised, or allowed to overmature.

    According to the Merck manual, exposure to sulphur dioxide results in respiratory tract irritation: sneezing, cough, dyspnea, and pulmonary edema when inhaled as in smog. If the body responds so strongly to this agent when it is in the air, it makes sense that it cannot tolerate it when we ingest it with our food. It is, in fact, a deadly poison and is treated as such in the manual.

    Everyone knows that we need oxygen to live; in the absence of oxygen we cannot breathe. On a cellular level our cells require oxygen to function. All plants and fruits of plants contain oxygen as an essential component of their structure. Oxygen also plays a role in every action and reaction in our body and is required to produce the ATP (adenosine triphosphate) for energy metabolism.

    Oxidation may be interpreted in several ways. The addition of oxygen to a molecule is one form of oxidation. Every oxidation must also be accompanied by the opposite reaction, a reduction, and this is when oxygen is taken away or reduced from a molecule.

    Oxidations and reductions are essential in utilization of foods to provide energy. The oxidation of foodstuffs, fats, carbohydrates, and proteins, takes place in a step by step manner through what is called the "Kreb's cycle." The end result of the Kreb's cycle is liberation of energy to be used as needed by the body.

    Any interference at any point during the oxidation reduction process can and does effect the entire body. Research is lacking on what effect antioxidants which are added to our food can have on general cellular metabolism but as students of Life Science you know that any fragmentation of our natural foods always results in adverse consequences. Especially serious consequences occur when out and out poisons are added to our food, such as sulphur dioxide.

    Must be digested efficiently.
    Must have protein adequacy.
    Must have vitamin adequacy.
    Must supply mineral salts amply.
    Must supply our needs for essential fatty acids.
    Must supply our needs for caloric values.
    Does molasses meet any of these requirements?

    Molasses is the end product in the manufacture of refined sugar. It contains many toxic substances. Psychologically, this dark gooey product has no appeal at all except that we have become accustomed to it and have learned to accept it as an addition to our diet along with other perversions. Children naturally rebel against the taste of molasses. This does not occur with a nice ripe banana or a piece of watermelon, for example.

    Molasses is not delicious to any unperverted palate. Furthermore, molasses has no natural state since Nature never created such a conglomeration of sugar and chemicals. Molasses has no living state in Nature. It is repulsive to our sense of smell, taste and sight. Molasses is not easily digested. As little as one tea-spoonful will result in nausea. This indicates that the body rejects this poison rather than attempting to digest it as it would with a normal food such as an apple.

    Molasses is not digested efficiently. It is often passed through the body with little absorption and often results in diarrhea. This is another indication that the body is attempting to dispose of this toxic matter.

    Molasses is entirely lacking in protein.

    Since molasses goes through such a long boiling process, there are no vitamins left in the end product. The only mineral salts that are detectable in molasses are those inorganic minerals that are residues from the contaminants accumulated during the manufacturing process. These inorganic minerals are not usable and are toxic.

    Molasses supplies no fatty acids.

    One tablespoon of blackstrap molasses supplies approximately 43 calories. In order to meet our daily caloric needs, we would have to consume an entire meal of molasses. Molasses cannot be relished by itself by anyone. A proper food of humans can be eaten as a meal. For instance, we can make a mono meal of any one of these foods: apples, watermelon, cantaloupes, bananas, grapes, oranges, peaches, apricots, figs, dates, etc. And you can maintain health for several weeks just on these foods alone. However, you could never make one mono meal of molasses. It would be repulsive to even think of doing so and it could certainly not support life.

    The fact that molasses cannot meet any of the criteria of a food automatically puts it in the category of junk food and it should be eliminated from our diet forever!" GMO KILLS WEEDS BY SUGAR CANE.

  8. Auto de Fe:

    Molasses is delicious.

  9. Nomi Carmona:

    Yes and the biotech/chemical/GMO industry has been incredibly generous to push forward with their will to destroy everything we love in Hawaii with hazardous chemical experiments and open air genetic engineering, $434,000 to the Governor, State House and State Senate alone.

    Check out the BAB 2013 GMO financial analysis of the State Senate & House: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/ccc?key=0AlMuG7w978-pdHF0aXhibGcydjFqQndwQUh3QXJSX1E&usp=sharing

  10. Especially Incognito:


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