Monsanto? - U2 Feedback

Go Back   U2 Feedback > Lypton Village > Free Your Mind
Click Here to Login
Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 06-24-2015, 05:57 PM   #1
The Fly
 
Join Date: Jun 2015
Posts: 49
Local Time: 09:26 PM
Monsanto?

I have been a U2 fan since 1982. But I have had enough!

Besides the music, I was always interested in the subject matter in many U2 songs. I liked music made by musicians who had something to say. But over the years, especially the past ten years, I have found Bono's politics to be increasingly troubling. Maybe it was taking a master's degree in international development 15 years ago that really opened my eyes.

I read many comments on youtube and elsewhere from U2 fans praising Bono for caring about the world, caring about Africa, and so on. People don't seem to notice that there are different ways to care about Africa – and neoliberal capitalism dominated by the USA, making "future consumers for America" (to use Bono's words), is not necessarily in the interests of Africans.

Bono claims to have been educated in economics having sought advice from a liberal economist (American!) and a conservative economist (American!). Does this man not know that there are economists in the world who are NOT American? And does he not know that the advice he sought does not represent even part of the spectrum of viewpoints. Why did he not speak to a left-wing economist?

I don't get the tax avoidance thing. There is no justification. Simply NO justification. "Partnering" with Bank of America is just evil, and cannot be justified by saying that it is raising funds for Africa. Bono, where is your spine? Was it all a lie, back in the 80s? Was your father right about you shouting about what you don't know?

And now Monsanto? Monsanto is not only bad for Africa, it's terrible for the USA. Just as it has been terrible for Mexico. There is NO justification. Pure evil.

U2 fans - please wake up! Tell Bono that it's not too late to go and get an education. There are people in their 70s doing degrees these days! His views on international development are increasingly unbearable. He has literally become the mouthpiece of corporations and the interests of the rich, but claims to be speaking for Africans. I can't stand to hear him speak on anything political anymore. And it is ruining the music for me. Give me Russell Brand, any day. There are already Monsanto ads on the TV trying to improve their PR. We don't need to hear it from musicians. Please, shut up and get on with making music! And go and see the world from a different perspective. You are too entrenched in a particular viewpoint – one that is extremely troubling.
__________________

__________________
wideawake2015 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-24-2015, 06:00 PM   #2
The Fly
 
Join Date: Jun 2015
Posts: 49
Local Time: 09:26 PM
PS: Bono, I'm sure all of your heroes – John Lennon, Joe Strummer, Bob Marley, for example - would be turning in their graves! Monsanto? Really??
__________________

__________________
wideawake2015 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-24-2015, 06:13 PM   #3
Blue Crack Addict
 
DaveC's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: illegitimi non carborundum
Posts: 17,390
Local Time: 08:26 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by wideawake2015 View Post
I have been a U2 fan since 1982. But I have had enough!

Besides the music, I was always interested in the subject matter in many U2 songs. I liked music made by musicians who had something to say. But over the years, especially the past ten years, I have found Bono's politics to be increasingly troubling. Maybe it was taking a master's degree in international development 15 years ago that really opened my eyes.

I read many comments on youtube and elsewhere from U2 fans praising Bono for caring about the world, caring about Africa, and so on. People don't seem to notice that there are different ways to care about Africa – and neoliberal capitalism dominated by the USA, making "future consumers for America" (to use Bono's words), is not necessarily in the interests of Africans.

Bono claims to have been educated in economics having sought advice from a liberal economist (American!) and a conservative economist (American!). Does this man not know that there are economists in the world who are NOT American? And does he not know that the advice he sought does not represent even part of the spectrum of viewpoints. Why did he not speak to a left-wing economist?
Why exactly is two economists Bono spoke to being American an intrinsically bad thing? Also, obviously these are not the ONLY two people Bono has ever spoken to on the subject of economics.

Quote:
I don't get the tax avoidance thing. There is no justification. Simply NO justification. "Partnering" with Bank of America is just evil, and cannot be justified by saying that it is raising funds for Africa. Bono, where is your spine? Was it all a lie, back in the 80s? Was your father right about you shouting about what you don't know?
Evil?

Care to elaborate on why Bank of America is literally evil?

And as far as the tax thing goes, U2 is a corporation. I work in Finance and see dozens of major corporations move for tax purposes every single day. Why exactly is it completely unjustifiable for U2 to do it? Really, why is it such an unforgivable sin for a corporation whose primary responsibility is to increase value for its shareholders, just like every single other profit-seeking corporation on the face of the Earth, to make a move to do exactly that?

Quote:
And now Monsanto? Monsanto is not only bad for Africa, it's terrible for the USA. Just as it has been terrible for Mexico. There is NO justification. Pure evil.


Let me guess - GMOs are "pure evil"? News flash for you - unless you're out in the woods foraging for wild nuts and berries, nearly everything you eat has been genetically modified by humans.

Quote:
U2 fans - please wake up! Tell Bono that it's not too late to go and get an education. There are people in their 70s doing degrees these days! His views on international development are increasingly unbearable. He has literally become the mouthpiece of corporations and the interests of the rich, but claims to be speaking for Africans. I can't stand to hear him speak on anything political anymore. And it is ruining the music for me. Give me Russell Brand, any day. There are already Monsanto ads on the TV trying to improve their PR.
How dare an international corporation try to improve their public image with a marketing campaign? That's something only HITLER would do, guys. Pure mothaphuckkin' evil.

Quote:
We don't need to hear it from musicians. Please, shut up and get on with making music! And go and see the world from a different perspective. You are too entrenched in a particular viewpoint – one that is extremely troubling.
Quote:
You are too entrenched in a particular viewpoint – one that is extremely troubling.
Quote:
You are too entrenched in a particular viewpoint – one that is extremely troubling.
Quote:
You are too entrenched in a particular viewpoint
Quote:
You are too entrenched in a particular viewpoint
The irony of you saying this is hilarious. Pot, meet kettle.

This is a serious contender for "stupidest FYM thread ever", and you've only got two posts, so um...way to set the bar high I guess?



EDIT: I'm sure John Lennon and Bob Marley would give less than zero shits about what Bono supports, but if you want to believe that they were saintly paragons of virtue, then have at 'er. You're totally out to lunch on all points, but whatever.
__________________
DaveC is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 06-24-2015, 06:47 PM   #4
The Fly
 
Join Date: Jun 2015
Posts: 49
Local Time: 09:26 PM
Wow

I came here for interesting discussion amongst adults, but what with the repetitive single quote from my post and being accused of writing the "stupidest post", and general sarcasm, I feel like I have come to the wrong place.

I will reply in full tomorrow when I have some time to answer all of your questions in more detail.
__________________
wideawake2015 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-24-2015, 06:57 PM   #5
Rock n' Roll Doggie
Band-aid
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Polish-American Stronghold PA
Posts: 4,144
Local Time: 08:26 PM
I don't understand the Monsanto controversy therefore I don't have an opinion on it.
__________________
Oregoropa is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-24-2015, 07:26 PM   #6
Blue Crack Addict
 
Vlad n U 2's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 28,011
Local Time: 11:56 AM
Russell Brand probably isn't preferable either, given his support for UK Labour in the recent election.
__________________
Vlad n U 2 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-24-2015, 08:15 PM   #7
Rock n' Roll Doggie
VIP PASS
 
Mack_Again's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2014
Location: definitely Osaka
Posts: 6,618
Local Time: 08:26 PM
.....I believe Monsanto is evil not because of GMO (which is probably safe, scientifically) but because they just try to dominate teh business
__________________
Mack_Again is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 06-24-2015, 08:49 PM   #8
BVS
Blue Crack Supplier
 
BVS's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: between my head and heart
Posts: 40,651
Local Time: 07:26 PM
This whole Monsanto thing is just bizarre and full of so much bs and misinformation.

First and foremost do you have a legitimate link that shows a connection between Bono and Monsanto? This came up a few years ago and it was discovered that there was no real evidence, every article lead back to one BLOG writer that had a history of fabricating stories, and I haven't seen any legitimate sources linking them since then.


Sent from my iPhone using U2 Interference
__________________
BVS is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 06-24-2015, 09:52 PM   #9
Blue Crack Addict
 
DaveC's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: illegitimi non carborundum
Posts: 17,390
Local Time: 08:26 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by wideawake2015 View Post
I came here for interesting discussion amongst adults, but what with the repetitive single quote from my post and being accused of writing the "stupidest post", and general sarcasm, I feel like I have come to the wrong place.

I will reply in full tomorrow when I have some time to answer all of your questions in more detail.
Your outrageous hyperbole just begged for that sarcasm, bud. Welcome to Interference.
__________________
DaveC is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 06-25-2015, 01:04 AM   #10
45:33
 
cobl04's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: East Point to Shaolin
Posts: 55,025
Local Time: 12:26 PM
Russell Brand is garbage. Just hot air.
__________________
cobl04 is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 06-25-2015, 01:29 AM   #11
Resident Photo Buff
Forum Moderator
 
Diemen's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2000
Location: Somewhere in middle America
Posts: 13,234
Local Time: 07:26 PM
The prevailing attitude of your post seems to be that Bono should have nothing to do with anyone with differing politics and/or questionable business practices. This kind of purity clause for getting things done simply doesn't work. In order to get things done on the scale necessary to effect real, lasting change, you have to be willing to accept help from those willing to provide it. If someone is willing to provide millions of dollars in aid to the poorest of the poor, you'd be a fool to turn that away for ideological reasons.

Compromise gets shit done.
__________________
Diemen is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-25-2015, 03:30 AM   #12
Galeonbroad
 
Galeongirl's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Schoo Fishtank
Posts: 70,773
Local Time: 02:26 AM
Not understanding the tax avoidance? Read up on the matter, it was a business decision, U2 is a business, they did what everybody else had been doing for years (The Rolling Stones are their neighbours in Amsterdam, for that matter, but big artists like Madonna have their royalties here as well).
This was blown up by the media and completly moronically ádopted by far too many people as a big thing to bitch U2 on.


And now you're doing the same with Monsanto. Which has been based on NOTHING, as BVS said this was all based on one blog that had no official confirmation whatshowever.

I find it utterly hilarious by the way how Monsanto is evil, while what they do could actually feed the entire world.. Ending world hunger is pretty good if you ask me. But OH NOEZ, they use GMO so they MUST be evil.

Oh wait, pretty much every food you eat is genetically modified. Ever ate broccoli? First example of genetic modification dating back from way before christ.

People fear what they do not understand. That does not mean it is evil. People once were afraid of fire. Of the weather, the thunder and the lightning. Yet now we have this magical thing called the internet where you can educate yourself on everything you've ever wanted to know. I'd suggest reading some scientific papers on what genetic modification is and how it works. It's not too late to get an education.
__________________
Quote:
Originally Posted by GraceRyan View Post
And if U2 EVER did Hawkmoon live....and the version from the Lovetown Tour, my uterus would leave my body and fling itself at Bono - for realz.
Don't worry baby, it's gonna be all right. Uncertainty can be a guiding light...
Galeongirl is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-25-2015, 07:41 AM   #13
Blue Crack Supplier
 
elevated_u2_fan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: I'm here 'cus I don't want to go home
Posts: 31,691
Local Time: 08:26 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mack_Again View Post
.....I believe Monsanto is evil not because of GMO (which is probably safe, scientifically) but because they just try to dominate teh business
While I don't agree with GMOs on a moral basis I do understand a need for them. Monsanto's practice of monopolization on our food supply is what really terrifies me if I'm being honest.
__________________
elevated_u2_fan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-25-2015, 08:27 AM   #14
Refugee
 
Hollow Island's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Posts: 2,129
Local Time: 09:26 PM
Monsanto is unquestionably evil, maybe the most evil corporation in the world. It's not just that they're trying to monopolize the food system, it's how they try to destroy farmers that don't want to work with them. And how they hold the ones who do work with them hostage. Then there's how bad their products actually are for the land....

But where did this "Bono is a shill for Monsanto" thing come from? Every now and then I see it pop up, but I don't know where it came from. Still, it's not far fetched. Bono is a bit of a pitch man for the neoliberal framework that has destroyed North America and the EU. It's not time to export that system to Aftrica, it's time to tear it down and create something that isn't hostile to life itself.

And Bono claims that Africa will be future consumers for America? What decade does he think this is, the 50s? America doesn't make anything! And anyway, isn't that a disgusting way to refer to a billion people? To boil their worth down to being consumers for a country that is nothing but a mascot for corporate imperialism?
__________________
Hollow Island is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-25-2015, 09:31 AM   #15
The Fly
 
Join Date: Jun 2015
Posts: 49
Local Time: 09:26 PM
Hi everyone,

Much of the following is in direct reply to DaveC, but I am also replying to other comments in the context of this reply where relevant.

(1) DaveC asked, “Care to elaborate on why Bank of America is literally evil?”
I used to live in America and I had three Bank of America accounts. I simply did not like their practices with regards to my bank accounts, which I found to be unethical. The post-2008 era reinforces my cynicism. Whether it’s Bank of America or Barclays – what is the difference. Barclays in Africa, for example. I studied with African students who did not have high opinions of Barclays. I’ll get back to these issues when discussing corporations etc.

(2) Regarding the two economists. I tried to remember the exact source I was referring to and found it. I confess that I did not remember totally correctly. Here’s the link RTÉ Television - The Meaning of Life with Gay Byrne - then go to Page 4 and selected the interview with Bono. My mistake was that I was confusing this, which I watched over a year ago and did not remember 100% correctly, with the economists that Bono sought advice from when he first started learning about economics in the late 90s. He is actually talking about discussing policy / lobbying with the economists. HOWEVER, I had partly remembered correctly. See at 20 minutes, for the subsequent minute or so. What troubles me is he refers to “political spectrum” in terms of “left” and “right” which he then narrows down to “conservative” and “liberal”. That is NOT the complete political spectrum – apart from with regards to the very narrow USA political spectrum in terms of voting options. He also talks about a “radical centre”, but there is nothing radical about Bono’s free market “activism”.

DaveC, you asked: “Why exactly is two economists Bono spoke to being American an intrinsically bad thing?” I did not say that exactly and I did not mean to imply that. Bono’s economics guru is Jeffrey Sachs. He is American. That is fine. But there are economists all over the world of all political persuasions. Studying international development academically, you get to read a diversity of views and arguments. But Bono’s “activism” doesn’t stray beyond Jeffrey Sach’s “The End of Poverty”. And this book is troubling as I will try to argue.

Firstly, I would like to say that getting educated on international development by economists is only part of the problem. A macro-economics perspective hides all kinds of problems that Bono, Sachs, and the UN MDGs sweep under the carpet. Bono often talks about social justice, but he doesn’t seem to be aware at all about social injustices caused by macro-economic development policy. He should also be talking to anthropologists and sociologists, seeing how macro-economic development policy affects local communities, local cultures, indigenous (endangered) languages, and further strains imbalanced power relations and social inequalities. Bono’s references to social justice without considering these things is simply naivety. And yet he was so much hegemonic power, influencing thousands of U2 fans that think he has all the answers.

DIEMEN, you sound just like Bono. Too simplistic and not confronting enough of the issues. You say, “Compromise gets shit done” but where are the bigger compromises being made and by whom?

Regarding Jeffrey Sachs’s “The End of Poverty” – I was impressed when I first read it at time of publication. Wow, his water privatisation policies in Bolivia seemed to work so well! Then I read Naomi Klein’s responses – about what REALLY happened in Bolivia. The riots against water privatisation. Then I found myself in a classroom with some Bolivian students who totally opposed Jeffrey Sachs. This is one example. I won’t go into too much detail, but William Easterly, for example, has written a lot in argument against Sachs. There are videos online. See his book “White Man’s Burden” as a starting point. Read Dambisa Moyo – a Zambian economist educated in the UK and USA. She has been described as the “anti Bono”. Why is Bono not learning from her – an African, a woman? Why only white male American economists? Ashwani Saith refers to Sach’s book not as “The End of Poverty” but “The Idiot’s Guide to Poverty”. There is so much debate, yet Bono suggests there is consensus – that a “radical centre” is possible. This is PARTLY what I meant by being entrenched in a particular viewpoint. I will elaborate on that later.

(3) Regarding Monsanto, DaveC, you wrote: “Let me guess - GMOs are ‘pure evil’? News flash for you – unless you're out in the woods foraging for wild nuts and berries, nearly everything you eat has been genetically modified by humans.”

Thank you for the news flash. However, you guessed totally wrong in this case. Please try to guess accurately next time before jumping into such a patronising and antagonistic tone. GALEONGIRL also made the same assumption about my disapproval of Monsanto – and seemed to be equally patronising while at the same time displaying total ignorance. May I suggest that YOU do some more research?

My view is encapsulated by the comments of VLAD N U 2: “I believe Monsanto is evil not because of GMO (which is probably safe, scientifically) but because they just try to dominate the business”. Similarly, ELEVATED_U2_FAN knows what is going on! “Monsanto's practice of monopolization on our food supply is what really terrifies me”.

Hi OREGOROPA, you said you did not understand the Monsanto debate. May I recommend that you watch the documentary film “Food Inc”. Here is a trailer:

This is a ridiculous comment. Absolutely childish. A PR campaign is fine as long as it does not contradict the practices of the company. Then it is hypocritical whitewash. It is simple propaganda and lies. Telling lies is not ethical just as Monsanto’s practices are arguably unethical.

(5) BVS asked, “do you have a legitimate link that shows a connection between Bono and Monsanto?”

Firstly, I am surprised that Bono has not spoken out against such rumours if assuming he is “innocent”. To answer your question, I don’t know. This seems to be a more recent example of this Bono–Monsanto accusation:
U2's Bono partners with Monsanto to destroy African agriculture with GMOs - NaturalNews.com What do you think?

I just found this book on Google Books: “Jeffrey Sachs: The Strange Case of Dr. Shock and Mr. Aid” by Japhy Wilson. I don’t know the author and I don’t know if the book is reliable or not. However, the author makes a strong connection between Jeffrey Sachs’s work at Columbia and “partnerships” with Monsanto. Since Bono has yet to disagree with anything that Sachs has argued for, and Bono has not attempted to distance himself from the Monsanto rumours, I am not very confident that these are just “rumours”. Can someone please just ask Bono what he thinks about Monsanto?

Regarding the Sachs–Monsanto accusations, what is potentially extremely hypocritical here – or, at least, something Sachs should be arguing against – is Monsanto’s strict patents / intellectual property rights etc. Sachs argued AGAINST these practices in order to reduce poverty in the so-called developing world. Is he now endorsing or “partnering” with Monsanto in total contradiction of his own arguments?

(6) DaveC, I will try to elaborate on what I mean by “entrenched in a particular viewpoint”. Bono used to appear to be concerned with the social injustice of people who were not like him – in other parts of the world, of different political persuasions, who were oppressed, and so on. But his “activism” has come to represent the interests of elites – rich people like himself – although “in the name of” helping the poor. However, as I have argued above, his macro economic perspectives do not deal with all the issues of social injustice – in fact, they can create further social injustice and inequality. It troubles me that he doesn’t see this. Of course WE ARE ALL entrenched in particular viewpoints to some extent. This is called positionality in social sciences. But the extent to which we resist this entrenchment is the key point.

See:

I agree that this is business as usual, but I simply believe that it is unethical. Ireland collapsed and U2 decide to pay less tax by moving their money elsewhere. Again, compare with Russell Brand supporting the options that would make millionaires like him pay more taxes. Charlotte Church, too. It comes down not to what the rules are, or what is business as usual – but what kind of society and what kind of world we want to live in.

This brings me to:

(8) Questions of ideology. DaveC, if a corporation has the primary responsibility is “to increase value for its shareholders” do you really think that a company like Monsanto playing a part in development in Africa is REALLY acting in the interests of Africans? Who are the shareholders? Not Africans, but predominantly Americans, I suspect. DaveC, you have really, although unwittingly, hit the nail on the head here! Is the market really the best means of development in Africa? I’m sure it can play a role. But not via dominating the seed market and screwing African farmers. The market may have a role, but “activists”, as Bono describes himself, should be challenging Monsanto ALL the way to the bank. There should be no simple endorsement.

Anyway, the jury is out on the Bono–Monsanto connection. Let’s see what develops.

(9) Lennon, Strummer and Marley. Well, we just don’t know, do we DaveC. But my point is that Bono tries to ally himself with the public perceptions of certain individuals. Maybe it is just my projection, according to common perceptions of Lennon, Strummer and Marley, but I suspect they would be standing closer to Neil Young right now than Bono.
Raging in the free world: the many furies of Neil Young | Music | The Guardian You seemed to miss the point. They may be turning in their graves not because of what Bono supports (why should they care), but because of the way he allies himself with them (when they may have different viewpoints). But I guess, DaveC, you probably also think Neil Young is also “out to lunch”.

Sorry to write so much. Thanks for your patience.
__________________

__________________
wideawake2015 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off



All times are GMT -5. The time now is 08:26 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Design, images and all things inclusive copyright © Interference.com