Food Is Power and the Powerful Are Poisoning Us by Chris Hedges

by Chris Hedges
Featured Writer
Dandelion Salad
September 7, 2009

Yummy Juliet Tomatoes

Image by Dandelion Salad via Flickr

Our most potent political weapon is food. If we take back our agriculture, if we buy and raise produce locally, we can begin to break the grip of corporations that control a food system as fragile, unsafe and destined for collapse as our financial system. If we continue to allow corporations to determine what we eat, as well as how food is harvested and distributed, then we will become captive to rising prices and shortages and increasingly dependent on cheap, mass-produced food filled with sugar and fat. Food, along with energy, will be the most pressing issue of our age. And if we do not build alternative food networks soon, the social and political ramifications of shortages and hunger will be devastating.

The effects of climate change, especially with widespread droughts in Australia, Africa, California and the Midwest, coupled with the rising cost of fossil fuels, have already blighted the environments of millions. The poor can often no longer afford a balanced diet. Global food prices increased an average of 43 percent since 2007, according to the International Monetary Fund. These increases have been horrific for the approximately 1 billion people—one-sixth of the world’s population—who subsist on less than $1 per day. And 162 million of these people survive on less than 50 cents per day. The global poor spend as much as 60 percent of their income on food, according to the International Food Policy Research Institute.


via Truthdig

Copyright © 2009 Truthdig

Chris Hedges is the author of the new book “Empire of Illusion: The End of Literacy and the Triumph of Spectacle.”


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8 thoughts on “Food Is Power and the Powerful Are Poisoning Us by Chris Hedges

  1. Sometimes it is good to scream loud in print to let other know how we feel.

    Too many Americans quietly accept the increasing power of the corporations made possible by our own government, a government that is no longer for and by the people. It is for and by the corporations.

    People may vote, but Corporations, including the corporate press, control most of the information a voter receives.

    More people need to scream, even if their screaming seems impolite.

  2. The disaster described here harkens back to the 1886 Supreme Court allowing corporatios the rights of individuals. Idividuals are not cororations. They are generally and fascistly devoted to the bottom line. This needs to change. The people of the country and the world need to take back their countries from corporate rule. Until that is done, it is just grumbling.

    • Just try and do it (take back the country) as I have and see what happens to you, how you are treated by the ‘elect’–the various levels of bureacracy that exist for their own enrichment.

      I see that my comment posted below was left unaltered. That’s good Dandelion greens. Now we’ll see how far you rate freedom of speech and individual rights vs. censorship and bureacratic control.

      That is, again, if I choose to continue to comment.

      • Welcome, Ned, thanks for dropping by and commenting.

        There are not any written rules for commenting but the unwritten ones are pretty basic: no spamming, no threatening violence, keep the name calling to a minimum.

        There is no such thing as Freedom of Speech on someone’s blog, though. My blog is like my home, and if you were to call me or others at my house names, or threaten us or anyone else with violence, I would ask you to leave. Same goes here on the blog.

        I prefer the conversation/discussion to be polite, but differing opinions are always welcome.

        • Okey dokey. I don’t even remember how I found this site or blog as you call it, but when I saw Chris Hedges on your menu, I thought I’d pipe in, with a couple of comments….

          ….I’m a very angry guy and I have no reason to apologize to anyone.

          And I only wish my home and my life were as secure and safe from this intrusive, abusive and violent government kleptocracy as you maintain is your right in yours….

        • Ned, a lot of us are angry, too. We need to put that anger into good use.

          Are any of our lives secure and safe? No, but we can attempt to keep civil/polite even in trying times.

          We (the Left and the Right) need to come together and put aside petty differences, the big issues are too great to ignore any longer. We need to build on our agreements, such as ending foreign wars, no more bank bailouts, ending corporations’ personhood, getting Habeas Corpus back, eliminating the Patriot Act, etc.

  3. I want to tell whoever’s reading this something: I am a family farmer of 30 years standing and I am just about used up, kaputt, destroyed. I have received so much maltreatment from this country, the one you call America. For my own honesty and hard work and dedication, I have received in return, dishonesty and blatant malicious mis-use. I have a story to tell about this and there are thousands like me, who used to farm and were forced out, just as I am being forced out now too.. Even by the ones who claim they are family farm ‘advocates’. These so-called advocates are anything but. Everything is set up to take advantage of and manipulate the small honest provider and worker. There is corruption and abuse everywhere in our farm to table production policies and actions. I was ‘certified organic’ by the way and that didn’t help, either. I am very very very angry. I used to write my story at CommonDreams but they banned me, because I guess I wasn’t polite enough for their tastes. I like Chris Hedges and I used to read his work there. Well, no more, no more. I have no idea whether this site, Dandelion Salad is as rotten and hypocritical as CD, and the rest of this country of frauds and manipulators and thieves and liars, but I may just find out….if I decide to stick around as a commentor.


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