Monday 10 September 2007

UN Warns of Unrest as Food Prices Soar

Copied below is an article of why "development" is death. Development means losing the ability to produce food and other necessities locally. Even if they develop agriculturally, they turn from producing food forthemselves to producing food for export. Consider, for example thatduring the so-called Irish Potato Famine of the 1840s, England wasimporting food from Ireland. England had gained control over Ireland such that Ireland had been turned into an export economy, and even ifmillions starved, England could demand, through law and through force,that Ireland export food.

When a people must import food from around the world, those in control of the system will always be able to starve people into compliance. Theprice of Wheat in Chicago will starve the people of India. That isinsanity.

When growth occurs such that populations rise beyond the ability of the local environment to support them without either outside food orwithout chemicals and technology, then those people can be controlled. Those people are also disposable.

Read the article below, and then think about the perspective from which it is written. The article contains two stories, one overt, manifest,the other covert, latent. The overt message is about how food shortagescould be a problem. The latent message is about the developed world's risk of "unrest." The article is NOT about food shortages. It is aboutpoor people rising up because the system would just as soon they starveas live, and the risk that entails for the rich. The article is written to an audience of those in power, a warning to them to prepare fordanger from the poor, for the rich to be prepared to kill.

Buried in the article is the word "warning." Take it seriously.

Those of us lucky enough to have the opportunity need to teach, educate, inform about principles of social justice and human rights. Asa so-called educated person, I am obliged as a person of conscience tohelp use my skills to transform. So, I choose to work in education, and help others also develop this type of skill and knowledge so they canwork in their own domains. To transform the world, we need peopleworking together with a wide variety of skills and talents.

Kind Regards

Daniel Jordan,

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UN warns of unrest as food price inflation hits developing countries

Developing countries face serious social unrest as they struggle to cope with soaring food prices, the United Nations' top agriculture official has warned.

Jacques Diouf, director-general of the UN's Food and Agriculture Organisation, said surging prices for basic food imports such as wheat, corn and milk had the "potential for social tension, leading to social reactions and eventually even political problems".

Mr Diouf said food prices would continue to increase because of a mix of strong demand from developing countries; a rising global population, more frequent floods and droughts caused by climate change; and the biofuel industry's appetite for grains. "

That combination of factors would most likely lead to increases in food prices," Mr Diouf told the Financial Times.

Signs were seen in Mexico this year where mass protests were triggered by rising corn prices. Mr Diouf said food represented about 10-20 per cent of consumer spending in industrialised countries, but up to 65 percent in developing nations. "

If we continue to see an increase in their [food] prices and in their import bill for food, there is a serious potential situation," Mr Diouf said.

The warning comes as wheat prices are at a high, forcing developing countries such as India and Egypt to pay record prices for imports in what cereal traders described as "panic buying" to beef up reserves.

Wheat prices this week rose to a record $8.86 a bushel in Chicago, up about 60 per cent since January. Dairy product prices have also set records, while other commodities, such as corn and soyabeans, are trading well above historical averages.

Mr Diouf said although the biofuel industry directly increased the consumption of only a handful of agricultural commodities, such as corn and rapeseed, its effect spread to other food products because less acreage was devoted to non-biofuel crops and the cost of feeding livestock with grain was pushed up. "

The biofuel industry is a new factor creating demand for food for a non-food use," he said.

Fears about the inflationary impact of biofuels on global food prices have prompted Cargill, the world's largest agricultural company by revenues, to question the White House-led push for an increase in ethanol production through tax subsidies.


By Javier Blas in Rome
Additional reporting by Eoin Callan in Washington
Copyright The Financial Times Limited 2007

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