Rounding-Up BM Merge-atory with a Royal Flush-Down

Logos 12 / 2018 / acrylic on canvas / 40″x40″ / by C.E.

JUST IN THE SAINT NICK OF A FLUSH I ROUNDED-UP the above painting, which I began to conceive in idea-form back in February 2017.

Image: www.theintercept.com

It wasn’t until just after completing this painting at the end of February this year (2018) that I became aware of the proposed Bayer-Monsanto (BM) Merger: a $66.6 billion-dollar merge/purge which has been digesting in the corporate bowels of merge-atory since at least September 2016 (usatoday.com). The movement of such a large assimilation has been slow and constipated, and has coincided with another major movement in merge-atory plumbing between media giants Time Warner and AT&T–an effort the United States Justice Department has impacted on grounds that the merger would “raise prices for consumers…and inhibit innovation” (hollywoodreporter.com). Meanwhile, in the food-realm of consumption, on the Spring Equinox of this year (March 20th), the European Commission (part of the EU) approved the BM merger, flushing the deal down with BASFthe largest chemical producer in the world–agreeing to buy assets from Bayer (commondreams.com). In April, Russia approved the takeover on the terms of Bayer transferring “selected molecular breeding assets” and “digital-farming technologies” to Russia  (marketwatch.com), and in the U.S., just in time for tax day, the United States Justice Department granted approval, which effectively “[removes] the last major regulatory obstacle to the completion of the biggest deal in the seeds and crop-chemicals industry” (latimes.com). No more constipation in merge-atory land! But is this really a relief? And why is it that the Justice Department would block a merger  between two American companies which govern the media we consume in the United States, and yet approve a merger that will govern the food we consume–not just within our country, but globally?

Jack became Joker after falling into a vat of chemicals at Axis Chemicals (as in Axis of Evil?), causing his facial dis-figuration as seen in this screenshot from the 1989 Batman movie

So as not to back up necessary flow of information, I smell its important to expel some background and basic history behind these two mega agrochemical corporations which are about to become one. Out in public, the German chemical corporation Bayer is most notable for making commodities such as pain medication (Asprin), sunscreen (Coppertone), allergy relief (Claritin),  foot care (Dr. Scholls), birth control (Yasmin), erectile-dysfunction relief (Levitra), and of course (surprise surprise!) digestive health (MiraLax). In addition to these over-the-counter assets, Bayer makes dozens of various other chemical substances such as veterinary antibiotics, insecticides, fungicides, and herbicides. You can view a whole list of their Products from A-Z on their official website. This is no joke.

If these products aren’t interesting enough, Bayer has a longstanding pungent and rather caustic history, beginning in 1863 in Germany in collaboration with IG Farben, another industrial-scale chemical and pharmaceutical corporation. Their pre-WWII history includes the commercialization of heroin and creation of phenobarbital, which, under Bayer’s trademark name Luminal (from the Latin word lumen, which means “light” (dictionary.com)), was used in the Kinder-Euthanasie: the child euthanasia program in Nazi Germany in which at least 5,000 “severely mentally and physically handicapped children and young people up to 16 years old” were murdered on the grounds of Nazi ideology (i.e. Social Darwinism) (wikipedia). Ill-lumen-ating, isn’t it?

Illuminated Cross: The first Bayer cross erected in 1933 between 2 smoke stacks at their factory. Comprised of 2,200 light bulbs, at the time it was “the world’s largest illuminated advertisement” Image: bayer.co.za

As hard as it is to digest this history, it gets even more Nazieating deeper into WWII. During the war, IG Farben (which Bayer was a part of) utilized Jewish slave labor in factories which were built adjacent to concentration camps such as Auschwitz, and also “purchased prisoners for human experimentation”.  IG Farben manufactured Zyklon B–a cyanide-based pesticide used to lethally gas around one million people during the Holocaust. NOTE: none of this is conspiracy “theory” or “secret” history, as all of the above information is on the standard wikipedia page for Bayer and Zyklon B. Out of all the known companies (there were many) that profited from Nazi involvement, IG Farben/Bayer made the most $$$–and used this $$$ to help fund Josef Mengele‘s torture experiments (11points.com)–aspects of which (to dare to open up another can of $%*&) are *perhaps* informing “suspected” mind control programs operating today within the United States (i.e. Monarch). When truth came to light (lumen!) after the war, how and why is it that IG Farben was not convicted of crimes against humanity as a corporate entity? Though the IG Farben trial as part of the Nuremberg trials convicted 13 top officials of IG Farben for war crimes–with prison sentences ranging from a mere one year to a mere eight years–the conglomerate continued to exist and have influence, the convicted directors even returning to their positions after having been released from prison early (wikipedia). As a part of the post-war efforts of “denazification“, IG Farben was essentially dissolved (broken up), its aspects and “assets” being reabsorbed (redistributed) in/to various related entities.  This “liquidation(an applicable maneuver for a chemical company, no? And one which completed on Halloween of 2012, none-the-less) was essentially the baton of IG Farben being passed to off-shoot corporations such as Agfa, BASF, and Bayer (wikipedia).

Though a certain queasiness might make it feel easiest to file these sentences away into no-child-left-behind history books (oops, sorry to not beat around the Bush), there smells to be some real live zombies in the caskets of the present. As history has shown us, certain members of a fascist political group in the 1940s clearly perceived certain members of an ethnic group as “pests”. Hence, their justification for using pesticides on them. Even if Bayer is no longer using its chemical concoctions for obvious genocide, the chemicals–such as the pesticide Zyklon B–are still toxic. And history has also shown us that when a corporation can make profits from a regime, they will provide assets to that regime. An example of this in recent times lies within concealed details concerning German companies producing and selling poison nerve and mustard gas to Iraq during Saddam Hussein’s regime–and also to Iran and Syria in the early 2000s, post-911 (speroforum.com). Even more relevant to the present-present moment is the “pulling out” (is this a Bayer-worthy contraceptive measure?) of the United States from the 2015 “Iran nuclear deal framework” aka the “Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action” (of which Germany is a part of), which the President has declared is “rooted in “fiction”” (washingtonpost.com). In light of the fact that German companies were selling nuclear resources/technology to Iran around 2010 (speroforum.com), and yet signed on to the Iran nuclear pact in 2015, Trump *may* actually be telling some sort of truth (hey, anything goes, right?). Plus: this “nuclear deal” (its bound to be explosive, right?) with Iran clearly deals in/with more than nuclear weapons, as it included the immediate lifting of sanctions and embargoes “on Iran’s banks, insurance, investment, and all other related services in different fields, including petrochemical, oil, gas and automobile industries” (wikipedia). Who’s making big buck$? In addition to the U.S. flushing the deal down the toilet and vowing to make “no new contracts” with Iran, financial exchange with one of the most oil-rich countries will essentially be blocked (washingtonpost.com). Smells like some epic epidemic global constipation in the making! But to apparently remedy that, U.S. President Trump and North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un plan to meet at a “summit” on June 12 in Singapore to supposedly discuss a supposed agreement aimed at supposedly denuclearizing North Korea. However, this level of overt hypocrisy and contradiction is not nuclear science. Immediately as the U.S. purges itself out of Iran, it’s going to merge with North Korea? Something really smells…

But to reel it back into the reek of the Bayer-Monsanto merge/purge: Even though atrocious realities were confessed during the Nuremburg trials between 1945-6, and though Bayer apologized in 1995 about its use of Jewish slave labor in WWII, (nydailynews.com), I don’t perceive that the agrochemical corporation Bayer is going to step into sainthood once it becomes christened Bayer-Monstanto. I can’t seem to eat up Bayer’s motto “Science for a Better Life”. With the corporation’s unbroken lineage to a not-so-distant death-promoting regime (yes, the “science” of Social Darwinism via Nazism is as hypocritical and illogical as asserting that life evolves through murder), what kind of “Science” are they talking about? Maybe their union with Monsanto will make this more clear?

Monsanto, “a publicly traded American multinational agrochemical and agricultural biotechnology corporation” (wikipedia) is most notable for creating the widely-used herbicide branded as Roundup (of which the painting above alludes to), in addition to Agent Orange, the synthetic bovine hormone rBST, and “terminator seeds” (which never say “I’ll be back”), seeded under the category GURT: genetic use restriction technology. Let us not forget that the United States used copious amounts of Agent Orange as herbicidal/biological warfare in the Vietnam war. With all of these simple surface facts in mind, how could a Bayer-Monsanto monster do good to/for the planet, let alone humanity? Like nuclear weapons, both corporations have a history of engineering death and destruction.

On the official website for the merger, advancingtogether.com, you can read their social disclaimer “Cautionary Statements Regarding Forward-Looking Information”, which states among other things, that “Bayer and Monsanto assume no obligation to update the information in this communication, except as otherwise required by law. Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements that speak only as of the date.” Their advanced website platform allows you to explore many aspects of the proposed merger, including the “compelling strategic rationale”, “The Opportunity”, and “accelerating digital farming“. This is apparently seen as the “Facebook of Farming”(washingtonpost.com). Are our scientifically improved for a better life corn crops which get processed into Aunt Jemima maple syrup to be frosted on our defrosted Eggo waffles going to have a Facebook profile that my personal Facebook profile can be friends with? Do our social media likes count as votes in this democracy?

The non-affiliated site bayermonsantomerger.com paints a different picture of the merger, the front page stating, “The proposed merger would violate anti-trust regulation in the US and the EU as well as severely restricting choice and options for both farmers and consumers in a market already dominated by a few large players“. This is exactly the rationale behind the U.S. Justice Department blocking of the Time Warner and AT&T merger. And yet, in terms of media, isn’t it strange that a few corporations have a monopoly on “social media” i.e. legalized population surveillance? To continue: “A merger will also mean the Bayer-Monsanto company will control nearly 70% of the cotton acreage in the United States– unacceptably high by anti-trust standards.  Monsanto already possesses a 97% share for soybean traits, a 75% share for corn traits, and a 95% share for cotton traits, a combined Bayer-Monsanto would have a greater (and for cotton a dominant) share of the seed market, where its traits are promoted”. Does this game of Agro-Monopoly have a Go to Jail plot? This article from Washington Post and this one from Business Insider France help shed more light on the darkness which is breeding in the Bayer-Monsanto game.

It straight-up reeks that this “Science for a Better Life” is the motto for what should be given the grade of a triple F: Fake Food Farming. But let’s get honest: remove that “f” (pocket it, save it for a rainy day and another four letter word), as it is truly “Science for a Better Lie“. Just like how Social Darwinism (as is–to why not throw in the towel?–“social media”) is a lie, so too is it a lie that genetically modifying life = “progress”. Lie ≠ Life.

Though both Bayer and Monsanto separately and/or together clearly have many plungers going at once (including a “digital” one, to which I say: digital farming my a$$), overall the biggest b.s. is that none of the propositions set forth by this merger can be biologically composted to grow the things they claim. It takes good quality leftovers to make fertile ground. This is not human science-shit. You can’t actually grow food on ground made of technology. Or in manure that’s saturated with pharmaceuticals (do we really want our broccoli on birth control? But I suppose our corn needs Levitra to grow erect!). 

Proud To Be GMO / 2018 / faux gold leaf, Nestle chocolate chips, Twizzlers, corn seeds, paint, paper on wooden arrow / by C.E.

Things are looking up!

But wait: if corporations such as Bayer-Monsanto didn’t make our Claritin or Miralax, how would we alleviate our allergies and digestive problems?!!? I dunno….but *maybe* if we had the option to not eat GMO corn engineered to contain insecticides and/or herbicides–i.e. Round-up  (which by its chemical nature is toxic to most organisms, not just plants (nutritionstudies.org))–we wouldn’t have such bad allergies or digestive problems. Hmmm….the solution seems so simple, and yet….

I don’t know about you, but I really don’t want planet Earth to become the toilet bowl for a global all-in-one fecal-system ecosystem, incorporated of fake food, pharmaceuticals, pesticides–zombies of a sinister history which still live beneath the bowels of the environment. Regardless of what comes out of this merge-purge, it’s about time for the superheros of the real Justice Department to round-up this b.s. on behalf of the great plumber in the sky, giving these BM jokers the royal flush-down they deserve.

Further expanded Justice Society of America re-depicted by Alex Ross in 2003, and again in image below. Image: wikipedia
Round-up table of justice: Justice Society of America on the 1940 cover of All Star Comics #3, depicted by Everett E. Hibbard. Image: wikipedia

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It’s about time! A golden Lady Justice standing atop the pine cone shaped clock tower dome of the Brooklyn Borough Hall. Image: commons.wikimedia.org

UPDATE (7-2-18): read this article for more information on the Bayer-Monsanto merger

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