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April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review

Fooling Mother Nature: still not a good idea

By Susan Reimer




http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | (MCT) Mother Nature is in the news of late, and she doesn't seem happy.

Monsanto, the Great Satan in the eyes of the environmental movement, is making headlines with huge profit increases and yet another David-versus-Goliath lawsuit in Manhattan filed by organic and family farmers who fear the health consequences of the company's genetically modified food crops.

Scotts Miracle-Gro, a lesser Satan in the garden, tried to polish its image with an arranged marriage with the National Wildlife Federation, only to have the nuptials hastily canceled when Scotts pleaded guilty to knowingly selling tons of bird seed tainted with pesticides.

Meanwhile, the U.S. Department of Agriculture moved the lines on its plant hardiness zones a little further north - meaning more of those tender plants we tried in the garden will survive our milder winters. But the USDA pointedly said that this is not evidence of global warming.

Oh, and pythons in the Florida Everglades are eating all the mammals they can find - a food group which, last time I looked, would include humans.

First, on the matter of Monsanto. The multinational is the world's leading producer of the herbicide glyphosate, sold under the name Roundup. It is also the leading producer of genetically engineered corn, wheat, soybeans and alfalfa, called Roundup-ready crops because you can spray huge areas with the stuff, but only the weeds will die.

Supposedly.

There is fear that all this spraying is producing super-weeds and super-bugs and new plant diseases, not to mention what it might be doing to the wildlife that swims in or drinks from contaminated water sources. And there is research suggesting that ingesting the genetically modified grains has resulted in an increase in livestock infertility.

Environmentalists and safe-food activists are calling on President Barack Obama and Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack to stop the planting of Roundup-ready crops here and the strong-arm peddling of them abroad. But because there is such a revolving door for Monsanto executives and posts in federal agencies, nobody trusts the government to do the cautious thing here, especially when the company plays the "end world hunger now" public relations card.

While Monsanto markets to the farmers and the super-farmers, it has licensed Scotts Miracle-Gro to sell Roundup to the home gardener, and I admit that I use it on sidewalk and driveway weeds. And I like Miracle Gro plant food. It could be my imagination, but it seems to increase the number of blooms on my annuals.

But it looked pretty disingenuous for Scotts to try to buy some green cred from the National Wildlife Federation days before the corporation would be fined millions of dollars for selling bird seed contaminated with pesticides. I mean, really?

The guilty plea gave the NWF a graceful way out of the deal, but the firestorm on social media might have scotched it in any case. Garden and environmental bloggers and birders took to the Internet immediately and in great and angry numbers. It was Bank of America's debit card fee redux.

Now, about that map. It took long enough, and a couple of failed tries apparently, but the U.S. Department of Agriculture has released its first zone hardiness map for the United States and Puerto Rico since 1990. If you cross-check the new interactive map (available only online) with the old one, you can see if winters have indeed been as mild as you think they have been where you live.

The map was charted using temperatures over the last 30 years - instead of, perhaps, the last 20 - which critics say was done to dilute the evidence of global warming.

At the end of the day, your local nursery is better at telling you what will grow in your micro-climate than the USDA.

And finally, if the alligators in the Florida Everglades don't get you, the pythons and the anacondas might.

I am not sure if that has anything to do with genetically modified food, the poisoning of birds or global warming. It might just be poor pet stewardship. But, to paraphrase that butter commercial from another time, "It's not nice to fool around with Mother Nature."

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.

Susan Reimer is a columnist for The Baltimore Sun. Comment by clicking here.


Previously:

Baby Boomer: Looking at retirement, not facing reality

A chance purchase connected a woman to someone who changed her life profoundly, though they never met

Relocation starts to split up the old gang

Remember this: We all forget things

‘Superjobs’ leaving us super-stressed

On entitlements, younger generation has its say

Missing the good old days of the Cold War

Friends can be risky business for teens

In Social Security reports, a story of women's priorities

One soon-to-be grandmother's advice about sweating the small stuff

In my family's universe, I am not a star

Is America ready for a new ‘life stage’?

Paying for good behavior is worth every penny

He's on vacation, but she needs a break

Conan says what we wish we could

Body image issues get a new meaning

A spreadsheet for happiness? Thanks, but I'll take the wine



© 2011, The Baltimore Sun. Distributed by McClatchy-Tribune Information Services.

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