Mar 5 2010
GM Pro Fear Mongering
I cannot believe that still there is this belief that a legal challenge for damages, injury, or loss against someone growing genetically modified crops will fail on the grounds of this GM cropping being a legal crop.
Firstly, a challenge where no loss damage, or injury has been suffered, will undoubtedly fail
A legal challenge on risk grounds alone, most likely would fail.
If a GM grower plants a human modified product into a natural cropping area, where the neighbouring growers have clearly identified their intent to REMAIN GM free prior to GM being grown, then any contamination that affects adversely, the naturally pure crop, is surely both a loss and an injury to that non GM crops stature.
The argument as put in the land recently that the legal challenge will fail, because the GM crop is a legal crop, is absolute baloney.
If you paint a water tower and your car next door in an industrial lot is damaged with overspray, one has a legitimate claim; yet the spraying and paint was legal.
If you aerial dust your crops and the over-spray floats across a neighbour ‘s property, damaging his crop, there is a legitimate claim for damages; yet the crop spraying and spray was legal.
If you are driving your car down the road and you hit a pot hole and your tyre blows out causing you to have an accident running into a shop front; there is a legitimate claim for damages; yet the driving, car and tyre were legal and the pot hole was purely a responsibility coming under the road manger’s duty of care.
The legality of the crop has nothing to do with it, it is whether damage and injury ; loss, was suffered as a result of another’s actions
The GM crop is a modified crop by human hands, owned [AND CONTROLLED]by a corporation, as opposed to a natural crop owned and manipulated, by the Gods. This clearly differentiates the product. One is natural and therefore acts in a natural and godly way. The other is a natural product that has been tampered (altered) by man, so as to gather profits by such manipulation and retain control by the seed-stocks legal owner, in LAW, and as such, any effect such actions have on a neighbour, causing loss, are in fact damages and injury and to claim there was no chance of just recompense through the courts for such loss, especially without this being tested in law, is pure hogwash and quite frankly, subtle fear tactics.
To cap it off, before any of these GM growers entered into their contracts with their GM seed stock provider (which they must do), they can never use the defence, they were not aware of the risks and dangers such crop growing may expose their neighbours GM free cropping, to. We now have knowledge of risk, this alone, opens the door to immense legal argument
Damage, Injury, loss; however one wishes to term that which is caused by another, bringing about the contamination of a GM free crop and thereby causing that GM free grower to suffer the loss of his normal market and subsequently causing that grower to seek new markets that will accept contaminated product, will be able to be argued in legal terms as an action by another that has caused the plaintiff to suffer either damage injury, or loss.
That plaintiff may actually lose a GM free standing that was worked towards for generations of farming and thereby attaining a standing in their respective industry that amounts to seriously valuable goodwill. We all know goodwill in business is a most integral part of that business and is able to be valued in dollar terms.
The plaintiff may well suffer scientific costs associated with proving that the crop they have always sold as GM free, now requires authenticating as GM free as a result of locally grown GM cropping so as to maintain their buyer’s confidence.
The plaintiff may head and sell as a part of a futures trade agreement/contract, as GM free, as he has done for years and find that his crop is contaminated at another point in the supply and have his product relegated to a lesser product and hence a lesser price, or worse, a failure to comply with his contractual obligations under his future trading contract and find himself answering to GM contamination in court himself. Remember, this type of futures court action was in the media only a short while ago and that action was over the inability to fulfil supply as a result of poor yields due to drought. That projected litigation was being brought about as a result of natural causes.
The above are all possibilities and there are many other ways a GM free (natural cropping) farmer could fall foul of a human modified plant stock that affects natural plant stocks and as a result, the non-GM farmer suffers, either loss, damage, or injury.
It may well be that such immense social and personal pressures applied by this very GM cropping incursion, into a nation that has cropped most satisfactorily GM free for 200 years, there is reason to associate this incursion as a driving force in future, or even present, marital problems and rural suicides and here perhaps, this could fall under a pain and suffering claim.
So don’t ever hand the farmer the statement that he has no chance of litigation against the introduction of an unnatural, corporately owned and controlled, GM grains crop suddenly grown amongst an established natural grains cropping area and thereby, causing loss, damage and injury, on the grounds that this is a legal crop. In good ole Aussie vernacular, “that’s bullshit”.
The only way that this debate will be settled, is for there to be litigation and the courts decide. This of course means that such action will travel to the Federal Court, or even the High Court, for the corporation/s involved has, or have, very deep pockets and will keep reaching in deeply for such actions, for the rewards for them are not just immense, but gargantuan and if they win, power and control will be total.
Non GM Farmers that really wish to remain so and are genuine, need to amass a legal battle fighting fund that is invested to gather returns, in such an amount that makes litigation in such matters, no longer a matter of who has the deepest pockets, but rather, who is right in law.