What do you call it when some people actively and knowingly promote lies so as to profit to the detriment of those who believe those lies? A CONSPIRACY.
Yet so many people have been conditioned by our modern media to automatically reject anything as soon as the word CONSPIRACY is mentioned. So much so, that whenever somebody goes out of there way to point out all of the signs of a blatant conspiracy, they still couch in terms of denying it is "CONSPIRACY THEORY" to try and avoid the Pavlovian response that has been programmed deeply into the psyche of the average sheeple in our BraveNewWorldOrder.
J. Stanton of Gnolls.org has quickly become my favorite Paleo-diet blogger (one of these days I'll get around to buying his book). Like myself, he does not post regularly, about once a week or so. But his posts always prove to be well worth the wait (I'm sure I can't say the same for myself, as sometimes I'm just uninspired or busy, and I do sometimes put up throwaway posts simply because I'm tired of having an old post headline for weeks...but I digress).
His most recent piece, You Are A Radical, And So Am I: Paleo Reaches the Ominous "Stage 3" is a complete dismantling of conventional wisdom regarding diet, nutrition and health care. He basically deconstructs the propaganda that permeates our society and clearly exposes the motive as to why so many organizations and corporations have vested financial interests in promoting so many falsehoods and lies.
First off, he describes a basic principle of how a healthy economy works: by adding value to a product or service.
Adding Value: The Foundation Of Functional Economies
An economy based entirely on selling the same things back and forth to each other for ever-increasing amounts of money is doomed to eventual collapse. As we found out just a couple years ago, flipping houses isn’t the same as having a manufacturing base and a world that wants to buy what we make.
Stated more generally, an economy is only sustainable to the degree that its participants add value by their actions. Factory workers add value by turning raw materials into clothes and cars and electronics; farmers turn seeds and soil and sunlight into crops; ranchers turn calves and grass into beef; engineers turn ideas into buildable products; truckers move things from where they are to where they’re wanted; cashiers and stockers and managers and janitors turn a locked building full of things into a system by which you can find what you want and exchange money for it; and so on. Added value – cost of design – cost of production = profit.
This is not to be confused with the labor theory of value, which claims that labor has intrinsic value, and indeed, is the only ‘fair’ measure of value. This is hogwash. It’s easy to spend years of effort and not add a single penny of value—because value is determined by the buyer, not the seller. It doesn’t matter how much time I’ve spent making a coat rack if it’s ugly and no one wants to buy it!
Moving ahead: the more value we can add, the more profit we can make. It should be obvious that one way to add value is to transform cheap raw materials into an expensive finished product.
So far so good. No one can complain if you take a raw material, and improve it into a valuable product to increase it's value, like turning some gold into a beautiful piece of jewelry.
But when it comes to the food industry, this concept becomes insidious and clearly lays out an iron clad motive for why so many vested interests support the promulgation of lies and misinformation regarding diet and nutrition.
There’s one big reason that industrial food manufacturers like Kraft (Nabisco, Snackwells, General Foods, many more), Con-Agra (Chef Boy-Ar-Dee, Healthy Choice, many more), Pepsico (Frito-Lay, Quaker), Kellogg’s (Kashi, Morningstar Farms, Nutrigrain, more) are huge and profitable.
It’s because grains are cheap, but the “foods” made from them aren’t.
One reason grains are so cheap in the USA, of course, is gigantic subsidies for commodity agriculture that, while advertised as helping farmers, go mostly to agribusinesses like Archer Daniels Midland ($62 billion in sales), Cargill ($108 billion), ConAgra ($12 billion), and Monsanto ($11 billion)—and result in a corn surplus so large that we are forced to turn corn into ethanol and feed it to our cars, at a net energy loss!
“There isn’t one grain of anything in the world that is sold in a free market. Not one! The only place you see a free market is in the speeches of politicians. People who are not in the Midwest do not understand that this is a socialist country.”
-Dwayne Andreas, then-CEO of Archer Daniels Midland
“At least 43 percent of ADM’s annual profits are from products heavily subsidized or protected by the American government. Moreover, every $1 of profits earned by ADM’s corn sweetener operation costs consumers $10.” (Source.)
(And if you’re not clear on just how deeply in control of our government these corporations are, here’s another example: Leaked cables reveal that US diplomats take orders directly from Monsanto.)
That cheapness, however, doesn’t translate to profits for farmers or cheap food at the supermarket. Let’s do some math!
(Note: these are regular prices from the CBOT and my local supermarket, as of today. Supermarket prices will be somewhat cheaper on sale or at Costco.)
A bushel of corn weighs 56 pounds and costs $6.85. That’s 12.2 cents per pound.
A bag of Tostitos contains about 10 cents worth of corn, and costs $4.00.
That’s a 4000% increase.
A bushel of wheat weighs 60 pounds and costs $7.62. That’s 12.7 cents per pound.
A loaf of Wonder Bread contains about 16 cents worth of wheat, and sells for $4.40.
That’s a 2700% increase.
A bushel of soybeans weighs 60 pounds and costs $13.64. That’s 22.7 cents per pound.
A box of “Silk” soy milk contains about 4.5 cents worth of soybeans, and sells for $2.90.
That’s a 6400% increase.
In other words, it’s highly profitable to turn the products of industrial agriculture—cereal grains and soybeans—into highly processed “food”.
This is precisely why I believe we are regularly misinformed by the mass media about the "dangers" of meat and saturated fats, and why we should all eat a plant-based diet.
Note that the profit for the processors and middlemen comes out of the pockets of the producer and the consumer. Farmers are squeezed by the 12 cents per pound, and consumers are squeezed by the $4.40 per loaf.
In contrast, pork bellies cost $1.20 per pound today.
A pound of bacon costs about $5.
That’s a 400% increase…
…which looks like a lot until you compare it with 2700%-6400% for grains. Also, unlike grain products, bacon must be stored, shipped, and sold under continuous refrigeration—and it has a much shorter shelf life.
It’s clear that it’s far more profitable to sell us processed grain products than meat, eggs, and vegetables…which leaves a lot of money available to spend on persuading us to buy them. Are you starting to understand why grains are encased in colorful packaging, pushed on us as “heart-healthy” by the government, and advertised continually in all forms of media?
And when we purchase grass-fed beef directly from the rancher, eggs from the farmer, and produce from the grower, we are bypassing the entire monumentally profitable system of industrial agriculture—the railroads, grain elevators, antibiotics, growth hormones, plows, combines, chemical fertilizers (the Haber process, by which ammonium nitrate fertilizer is made, uses 3-5% of world natural gas production!), processors, inspectors, fortifiers, manufacturers, distributors, and advertisers that profit so handsomely by turning cheap grains into expensive food-like substances.
There you have it. Stanton reveals all the motives necessary for why Big Ag corporations and their Government lobbying and funding for misleading "studies" and the complicit corporate media scaring the masses into consuming their grain products as "healthy."
And yet he still felt the need to write the disqualifier in his conclusion:
Conclusion: You Are A Radical (And So Am I)
Simply by eating a paleo diet, we have made ourselves enemies of the establishment, and will be treated henceforth as dangerous radicals.
This is not a conspiracy theory. By eschewing commodity crops and advocating the consumption of grass-fed meat, pastured eggs, and local produce, we are making several very, very powerful enemies.
The medical and nutritional establishments hate paleo, because we’re exposing the fact that they’ve been wrong for decades and have killed millions of people with their bad advice.
The agribusinesses and industrial food processors hate paleo, because we’re hurting their business by not buying their highly profitable grain- and soy-based products.
The mainstream media hates paleo, because they profit handsomely from advertising those grain- and soy-based products.
The government hates paleo, because they’re the enforcement arm of big agribusinesses, industrial food processors, and mainstream media—and because their subsidy programs create mountains of surplus grain that must be consumed somehow.
He wrote a brilliant post showing precisely why there is in fact a very real Conspiracy...but has to put this disclaimer on it so that certain people don't ignore his rock solid case because of the cultural programming to discount anything labeled as "conspiracy theory" as outlandish and improbable.
It's not a conspiracy theory that giant agricultural corporations lobby politicians who in turn appoint their stooges to regulatory agencies like the USDA and FDA.
It's not a conspiracy theory that many Doctors understand the truth about grains and the lies regarding saturated fats and protein...yet the mainstream medical establishment still promotes statin drugs, and high carb/low-fat diets as their solutions to the problems of diabetes, heart disease etc.
These things are not conspiracy theories...they are conspiracy FACTS.