Emails reveal Monsanto Manipulation, Intimidation of Cancer Researchers

(Sept. 19, 2019) Emails uncovered in Monsanto Roundup lawsuits reveal Monsanto manipulation and intimidation of cancer researchers. Monsanto worked hard behind the scenes to push “the glyphosate safety question” before congress and regulatory agencies like the EPA.  Focusing on glyphosate is a red herring. Making people focus solely on glyphosate alone hides the real story of the cancerous propensities of Roundup and other glyphosate-based herbicides. Monsanto wants to make the world believe that glyphosate safety, rather than the entire Roundup cocktail and other glyphosate-based poisons, is the most important question. Encouraging uneducated or disinterested others to focus solely on glyphosate is, and has always been, Monsanto’s best chance to defend itself in the growing Roundup litigation.

Update: More than 18,000 Roundup lawsuits that have been filed against the company now owned by Bayer AG.

Journalist Lee Fang reported the story for The Intercept August 23 2019. Mr. Fang revealed how Monsanto worked with ranking Republican legislators like Frank Lucas of Oklahoma to attack cancer researchers who had found Roundup to be a probable human carcinogen. That finding in March 2015 by the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) alerted the world to the dangers of Monsanto’s Roundup.  They were dangers which Monsanto had shrewdly downplayed from the start in order to sell more Roundup to people unaware of the dangers they faced.

Luckily, more and more people are figuring out Monsanto’s whole game. Three huge jury verdicts against Monsanto so far have all found in favor of the plaintiffs. All claimed Monsanto failed to warn them that Roundup was carcinogenic and that users need to cover their skin and avoid breathing the poison while applying it. Monsanto itself instructed its own employees to cover up when spraying, mixing, or handling Roundup; at the same time, Monsanto failed to provide the same cautionary instructions for its customers. For Monsanto, the legend was, and remains, “Buyer beware.”

Glyphosate Safety Question gives Monsanto Game Away

One email string which shows Monsanto plotting to solicit responses from regulators and from Monsanto friends among Republican representatives of congress reveals a Monsanto VP of government affairs giving the whole Monsanto game away.

Monsanto VP Michael Dykes updated the Monsanto team later in 2015 after the IARC had determined glyphosate was a probable human carcinogen. Mr.Dykes’ plan to attack the IARC included the possible placement of advertisements — in the form of letters from ostensibly third-party groups — in Capitol Hill newspapers. Monsanto also prepared to use a Senate Agriculture Committee hearing as a venue to get the EPA to reaffirm its support for glyphosate.

Mr. Dykes wrote: “We will make sure Committee members ask EPA the glyphosate safety question.”

Nobody knew the importance of floating the “glyphosate safety question” better than Michael Dykes. This subterfuge of a safety question is precisely where the real toxic fraud of Roundup lies. Examining this issue closely shows just how Monsanto has hoodwinked ostensibly disinterested regulators and, in turn, most of the public.

The so-called “glyphosate safety question” is a red herring meant to derail any adequate or meaningful testing from the start. Focusing solely on glyphosate is an enormous, absurd loophole which EPA testing protocol encourages and allows. It is a loophole which includes fluoride and many other toxic chemicals which interact with other chemicals to produce something several hundred or even a thousand times more toxic than any chemical measured alone, in a vacuum.

Glyphosate in a Vacuum?

No chemical lives in a vacuum, but Monsanto and the EPA would have us believe that glyphosate does. They would have us believe that isolating a single chemical like glyphosate is enough to render a safety profile that we can trust with our lives. The obvious retort is that glyphosate is virtually NEVER applied alone, in a vacuum, without being mixed with surfactants, at least one of which is banned in Europe while it continues to be used in the U.S.

Mr. Dykes wanted the “glyphosate question” asked because when a regulator or anybody else looks at glyphosate alone as a possible carcinogen, one finds limited evidence to sound it out as toxic. Which is exactly why Monsanto has done most of its “research” into glyphosate safety by looking at glyphosate alone, and then sharing that “research” with the U.S. EPA, as well as with European and other regulators. This point cannot be overstressed. It is virtually meaningless to measure the toxicity of glyphosate alone, rather than to measure the toxicity of the entire Roundup cocktail and other glyphosate-based-herbicides.*

* It’s also worth noting that “herbicide” is a euphemism. Even the Monsanto-captured EPA classifies an herbicide as a pesticide. The naming of things matters, as Monsanto executives and anybody else with a working pulse well knows, or should know.

The Monsanto Papers

When, in March 2015, the World Health Organization’s cancer research arm, the International Agency for Research on Cancer, classified glyphosate, an active ingredient in the herbicide Roundup, as a “probable carcinogen,” the IARC looked only at studies done independently of Monsanto. The IARC also looked only at studies published in peer-reviewed literature. The IARC’s declaration that glyphosate is a probable carcinogen set off a global debate about the world’s most popular weedkiller. It also unleashed a treasure trove of legal discovery which brought us, among many bombshells, “The Monsanto Papers. ”

We can now all see through a glass darkly just how dirty Monsanto is. We can now see just how low it will go to destroy honest scientists, doctors, and journalists, whose only crime has been to study Monsanto’s poison products and warn the rest of the world about them.

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