Tis the season!
Just in time for holiday merrymaking, Santa has given me a sneak peak of his 2014 Naughty List. As usual, there are quite a few familiar faces on the list (at least they should be familiar if you’re a fan of The Farmer’s Daughter!). No surprise some our least favorite anti-agriculture characters have made the cut in the top 10 of Santa’s List.
Santa also gave me a peak of the Nice List, but that will come later.
(Hint: If you want, you can check out Santa’s 2013 list here. We have some repeat offenders!)
10. Rick Warren
We all make mistakes, which is exactly what Rick Warren did this year when he decided to team up with Dr. Oz and other pseudo-science doctors to write and craft his “Daniel Diet” book. The much-loved pastor obviously wanted to connect to celebrity “doctors” to gain credibility and tap into their fan bases. Unfortunately, Rick needs to pick his friends a little bit better. I mean, really, did you vet these quacks at all? It was a bad move on the part of the pastor and hopefully he won’t repeat the mistake in 2015. For now, he can bet that Santa won’t be stopping by his house on Christmas Eve.
The Cheerios producer had a confusing year with its on-again, off-again, maybe-maybe-not-again relationship with biotechnology. The company decided to try some not-so-clever marketing by altering its already GMO-free original Cheerios so they were GMO-free enough to have a label saying they were GMO-free. However, after sales tanked, the company released its annual report indicating that biotechnology had repeatedly been show to be safe. It also stated it would not change the ingredients of any other cereal so as to make it GMO-free. We also learned it had to drop some vitamins from its Cheerios recipe, making it less healthy, so it could be GMO-free enough to have the GMO-free label. Confused yet?
Allow me to clarify: Maui County voters that supported a county-wide temporary ban of biotechnology have made it onto the Naughty List. Now, the farmers can get the ability to farm those biotech crops again if they can demonstrate to the county that those crops are safe. The question is, what burden of proof do they have and how much money would it cost to make such a demonstration? The bottom line is that Santa doesn’t think it’s okay to hurt someone’s livelihood simply because you’re afraid of science and progress. For that reason, Maui County, Hawaiian voters have ended up on the Naughty List this year.
For the second year in a row, Chipotle has had the pleasure of gracing Santa’s Naughty List. But last year’s antics looks pretty weak compared to this year’s naughty actions. In 2013, Chipotle stuck to rude comments and attacks on US agriculture and long commercials about scarecrows. In 2014, the chain restaurant stepped it up by actually producing an internet-based mini-series making fun of farmers in general. I wonder who they think grows their food? Hopefully, Chipotle can find a way to use all that coal to cook some decent food….but probably not.
Ben & Jerry’s has never been shy to jump into the political arena and share its viewpoint through the magic of ice cream. It probably should have been predicted that the company would latch onto the anti-GMO movement to increase sales. Early in the year, B&J announced it would attempt to source all of its ingredients from GMO-free producers. Following passage of mandatory labeling laws in Vermont, the company pledged to give $1 for each ice cream purchase from two of the company’s Vermont stores to help fund the defense of the GMO labeling laws. It may be hard, but passing on B&J’s ice cream is definitely worth it. I suppose if all that coal is GMO-free, they could try to create a new flavor…
If you haven’t noticed, Santa has a soft spot for kids, and it really bugs him when people or radical activist groups like to mess with those kids. PETA did just that this year when they “accidentally” handed out a graphic comic book depicting a cow being mutilated to some elementary school children. The organization also managed to release a video supposedly showing animal abuse, but it turns out there was some discrepancies in the authenticity of the video. We also found out that PETA kills 82% of the animals brought to its shelter. So much for the whole loving animals thing. After all of PETA’s shenanigans, its appearance on the list should surprise no one. And, seriously, stop traumatizing the kids!
Consumer Reports used to be a respected magazine that tested products for safety and quality standards on behalf of consumers. Unfortunately, the magazine’s sales were evidently hurting and it decided to get political. In a fall edition of the magazine, Consumer Reports decided to take an anti-GMO stance and started citing fear-mongering “studies” and other anti-GMO rhetoric. Despite the claims being easily dismissed, Consumer Reports has landed itself firmly on the Naughty List. Santa isn’t such a fan of companies that start selling fear to rev up sales.
3. Mike Adams
Mike Adams, the self-proclaimed “activist turned scientist” and “Health Ranger,” took his Natural News website to a completely inappropriate level when he argued that anti-GMO activists had the moral obligation to murder biotech supporters. Citing some type of Nazi propaganda, Adams argued it was the moral obligation of anti-GMO folks to take action for the good of all humans. After Adams was heavily criticized for his call to murder, he attempted to argue the whole thing had been a set-up against him put on by Monsanto. The situation was even more ridiculous when it was demonstrated that he actually tried to make it look like he was set-up. Adams makes the Naughty List because Santa doesn’t like murderers and liars.
2. Food Babe
Fun fact: this time last year, I was blissfully unaware of Food Babe. If only we could go back to that lovely time. In 2014, I pointed out on numerous occasions that Vani Hari really had no idea what she was talking about, except that she was finding ways to make money by selling fear. Things got even more interested when she claimed my accusations were wrong and defamatory. Evidently she doesn’t mind slandering others for her own benefit, but don’t even think about pointing out her bad information or sources of profit. Sweetie, Santa isn’t even bringing you coal because you’ve been so bad.
Another fun fact: Food Babe almost made the #1 spot, but she doesn’t have her own television show. God forbid that ever happens.
1. Dr. Oz
Dr. Oz is…well, you know well what he’s done to wind up on the Naughty List. After all, if even Congress thinks you’re crooked, you must be pretty bad. The “doctor” attempted to scare folks about all sorts of things, including potatoes. It wasn’t until he took a stab at the new herbicide-resistant seeds called Enlist that things got extra ridiculous. His episode on the topic urged viewers to contact the EPA and attempt to block the deregulation of the new traits. Thankfully, it didn’t work and the ag community managed a nice response explaining the science and technology behind the seeds. not to mention that, although Oz still has a dedicated and loyal fan base, he’s also turning into the butt of all jokes. I hope Oz is comfortable at the top of Santa’s Naughty List, because I think he’s firmly stuck there.