University Study Laments “Just the Facts” Aren’t Enough to Convince Women of GMO Safety
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A recent series of focus groups conducted by researchers at the University of Adelaide is now demonstrating two things clearly: first, that Big Ag is growing increasingly desperate in its attempts to convince average consumers to continue purchasing their toxic products and remain unaware of any potential dangers. Second, that the unhealthy obsession with academia under the misapplied name of science is more akin to a religion than anything involving critical thought.
The results of the focus groups conducted by Dr. Heather Bray and Professor Rachel Ankeny was published in the journal New Genetics and Society and essentially acts as a brainstorming effort as to how big corporations through their minions at the university level can be more effective at convincing most people to trust GMOs.
The academics were primarily focused on women because as they state, previous studies have shown women as tending to be more opposed to GMOs than men. Like any good marketing strategist, the professors sought out the reason why.
“GM foods are an important issue for the community, and with women still playing greater roles in the provision of home care and food preparation, we need to better understand how women are thinking and what their values are in relation to these issues,” Professor Rachel Ankeny said.
The results presented as represented in a press release by University of Adelaide called “GM foods: Why presenting ‘just the facts’ won’t work” are as follows:
“All of the women with science backgrounds used evidence to support their stance, but the way they did so came as a surprise to us,” says co-author Dr Heather Bray, also from the University’s School of Humanities and Senior Research Associate in the Food Values Research Group.
“Women who had backgrounds in plant science said the lack of evidence of harm meant that GM food was safe to eat. But the women in health sciences said it was a lack of evidence of safety that made them cautious about consuming GM food. These perceptions are based on two very different concepts of risk, despite both groups being highly educated in science.
“For women without science backgrounds, GM food presented ‘unknown’ risks, and hence was to be avoided. There was a range of other issues apart from the science that arose in our study, a major one being a general lack of trust of science,” Dr Bray says.
Notice, however, that Bray attributes concerns of women without “science backgrounds” to a “general lack of trust of science.” Clearly, Bray, PhD that she is, is so wrapped up in the false appeal to authority that much of her career field rests upon, that she seems incapable of acknowledging the fact that women without science degrees might have legitimate concerns.
For Bray, an “uneducated woman” who distrusts GMOs is an uneducated woman who distrusts science. Obviously for Bray, GMOs equals science.
And this is at the crux of the recent and massive volley of propaganda regarding questions of health and safety, the environment and even culture. The debate, not about what has the most evidence, but what is presented as “science” or anti-science. What is considered “science” by most academics is not science at all. Likewise this is the case regarding the “science” presented in the mainstream media, government and corporations.
Science, for the managing class does not mean the practice of rigorous study and experimentation – it means a political philosophy and a common ideology held throughout these fields and industries. Thus, in the same way that religions tend to vary far away from what their original stories and figureheads represented, many science fetishists are not scientists or fans of science at all. They are fanatical adherents to an ideology they scarcely understand. In 2017, the white lab coat is replacing the frock as a code of dress representing control of the mind. This is why we have individuals describing nature and science as the main driver for the existence of our world (earth, planetary system, ecosystem, etc.) while missing the fact that science is the study of those forces and not the force itself. For those who may decry religion, such a statement is eerily close to saying God created the world, but I digress…
What is even more telling about this specific study, however, is the fact that the researchers are so frightened of facts.
“It’s important for scientists to realise that science has economic, social, and cultural impacts, and if people are presented with ‘just the facts’, the discussion leaves out critical topics and values,” Professor Ankeny says.
“People — including people highly educated in science — come to these issues with their own ideas, experiences, and values, and they are not necessarily going to endorse particular scientific theories or applications based simply on facts being provided to them.”
In other words, Ankeny and presumably her patrons (or more accurately, the university’s patrons) are worried that the facts might not convince the average consumer. They conclude that the consumer may need a little nudging and that, admitted by the researchers themselves, is the entire purpose of the study. As for the patrons, we should mention in passing that the University of Adelaide is conducting so many studies on GMOs such as the one discussed in this article by virtue of funding by Big Ag corporations like DuPont who have a financial interest in ensuring that consumers aren’t frightened by the facts and continue to consume their products.
Indeed, in 2013 alone University of Adelaide took in $5.4 million dollars for industry linked research. It’s nice work if you can get it, even if you do have to live from grant to grant.
While this might seem like a conflict-of-interest to anyone who has interest in actual science, or the wellbeing of the public or the environment, that certainly won’t stop academics and their tiny community of colleagues from screaming heretic! and assembling the stakes no matter the fact that their “science” is grossly tainted with a conflict-of-interest, something that at one time would have prevented the study from being taken seriously.
But that was an older time where science was not as well developed. Concerns over conflict-of-interest are so passe. Just think about it. Scientists of that bygone era were busy concerning themselves with evidence and results when they could have been greasing their pockets, promoting products and lowering the standards of education to the point that a college degree is not so much a sign of education but a sign of someone who can successfully regurgitate dogma about racism, sexism, homophobia and a litany of questions about theories surrounding gender.
Science? Who needs it? Let’s let the industry do the hard work while the scientists sit back in their modern day temples and accept the first fruits of young college loans as a sacrifice of the people.
But before you think that I am using hyperbole, this study is not just about GMOs, the authors actually say that the information that they have gathered from these focus groups can be applied to other areas such as climate change, vaccines and water fluoridation. Even nuclear energy can benefit from understanding why some women just don’t buy the bullshit.
As Bray says, “shared values are an important foundation for science communication, and we hope that our work can contribute to the development of better engagement strategies for both scientists and the public.”
Of course, by shared values, Bray means simply uniform indoctrination. In this case, “shared value” would be the worship of “experts” and the ability to scream science! in the face of anyone who dares question the status quo and to have that person sit silently mulling over their guilt and their inherent failure to be part of the “system of shared values.”
While it is not surprising that industry science would be investigating why consumers, especially women, (first you get the women, then you’ve got the children, so follow the men) it is a sign of confidence on the part of industry and a sign of shame on the general public that such statements would be uttered openly.
Yet the movement is at hand and the new religion is gathering more converts by the day. Not because it has better evidence or better reasoning but because it has “shared values” and many magnetic personalities behind it.
But this coordinated campaign is a much bigger agenda than this study or conflict-of-interest, Big Ag, academia and government. For that reason we certainly don’t want to put too much blame on the researchers of this study. After all, everyone has to eat, even if their food is genetically modified.
Brandon Turbeville – article archive here – is an author out of Florence, South Carolina. He is the author of six books, Codex Alimentarius — The End of Health Freedom, 7 Real Conspiracies,Five Sense Solutions and Dispatches From a Dissident, volume 1 and volume 2, The Road to Damascus: The Anglo-American Assault on Syria,and The Difference it Makes: 36 Reasons Why Hillary Clinton Should Never Be President. Turbeville has published over 950 articles dealing on a wide variety of subjects including health, economics, government corruption, and civil liberties. Brandon Turbeville’s podcast Truth on The Tracks can be found every Monday night 9 pm EST at UCYTV. He is available for radio and TV interviews. Please contact activistpost (at) gmail.com.