Monday, September 08, 2008

Environmentalists impoverishing Africa

Mark Henderson in The Times writes about how Africa is being kept poor by environmental activists from wealthy countries promoting traditional agriculture rather than the latest technology in agriculture. Sir David King, the former scientific advisor to the UK government, says of Africa:

Why has that continent not joined Asia in the big green revolutions that have taken place over the past few decades? The suffering within that continent, I believe, is largely driven by attitudes developed in the West which are somewhat anti-science, anti-technology - attitudes that lead towards organic farming, for example, attitudes that lead against the use of genetic technology for crops that could deal with increased salinity in the water, that can deal with flooding for rice crops, that can deal with drought resistance.

Of course anti-reason is the hallmark of the Greens - a philosophy of hysteria scaremongering, that is a quasi-religious worshipping of the "natural and traditional" against the scientific and technologically advanced.

He calls organic food "a lifestyle choice for a community with surplus food", not to say it is wrong for people to choose it, but that it has driven messages to those communities without surplus food, who simply can't afford to ignore the latest that agricultural science has to offer.

He talks of how hundreds of individual farmers taking produce to market is an inefficient activity from the past, because after all most food in developed countries is not sold by those producing it, because if they spent their effort doing that they would sell a fraction of what they do otherwise.

It's time to engage in the philosophical debate at question here. Should public policy be driven by well intentioned zealots who don't let evidence, science and results get in the way of their ideology, or should it be based on rational analysis of options? Should we continue to listen to the GE scaremongerers, the organic food advocates and those who spread scepticism about science, when they offer no solid evidence for their faith like beliefs?

When Professor King cites the example that "Friends of the Earth in 1999 worried that drought-tolerant crops may have the potential to grow in habitats unavailable' to conventional crops" then you know Friends of the Earth have become enemies of humanity.

It's about time the benign contradiction infested, irrational, quasi religious and pro-state violence philosophy of the Greens was challenged openly - it disgustingly taints the policies of most other political parties, and the mainstream media has neglected to confront what it is really about.

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