One of the sad things about U.S. government today is the revolving door between industry and politics. Politics is for industry these days, not for the people. One “revolving door poster child” is Michael Taylor. Taylor was a Monsanto attorney and chief super lobbyist and (re)joined the FDA in July 2009. He was eventually named the Deputy Commissioner of Food. Conflict of interest?
Truthfully, where do you think he’ll go when he’s done his job in the federal government again?
Here’s more from Food Democracy Now! (and an opportunity to take action is at that link):
The decision to name Taylor was one of the most controversial appointments of the Obama administration, one which Food Democracy Now! opposed at the time and still does because of the fact that Michael Taylor is the ultimate “revolving door” candidate and has a long and sordid track record of making bad decisions that consistently put corporate profits over people’s health.
In his previous governmental incarnations, Monsanto’s Michael Taylor was responsible for:
- Implementing the pseudo-scientific theory of “substantial equivalence” that allowed the rapid approval of GMOs without proper safety testing for humans and the environment and keeps them from being labeled.
- Helping Monsanto devise the legal constructs to get the synthetic GMO hormone rBGH approved by the FDA and then guiding its approval during his tenure at the FDA in the 1990s.
- Drafting the agency’s draconian rBGH labeling laws that made it illegal for farmers and dairy companies to properly label their milk rBGH free.
Today Michael Taylor is back at the Food and Drug Administration at the Number 2 spot, as an “advisor” to Commissioner Margaret Hamburg. In this role as the Food Safety Czar, Taylor is responsible for implementing the day-to-day policies that govern the food safety laws for the U.S. and unfortunately he has kept his big agribusiness ways intact.
And, yes, Taylor is a big force behind the ridiculous armed raids of raw milks co-ops.
CREDO, the coolest cell phone service provider in the world as far as I can tell, has more (and has teamed up with Food Democracy Now! in this call to action — link at the bottom):
Why is a former Monsanto lobbyist currently serving as the FDA’s food safety czar waging war on small dairy farms that produce fresh milk?
While factory farm operators are getting away with serious food safety violations, raw milk dairy farmers and distributors across the country have been subjected to armed raids and hauled away in handcuffs.
The Food and Drug Administration is running sting operations followed by “guns-drawn raids usually reserved for terrorists and drug lords” as part of a crackdown on unpasteurized milk.1 Meanwhile, the FDA is letting the highly consolidated industrial meat and factory farm industry off the hook despite growing problems.
Not surprisingly, the person responsible for prioritizing armed raids on small dairies over holding agribusiness accountable is a former Monsanto attorney and chief super lobbyist. Monsanto’s Michael Taylor is the second highest-ranking official at the FDA, and as Food Safety Czar is responsible for implementing the day-to-day policies that govern the food safety laws for the U.S. 2
Take action today and help get this Monsanto employee out of the federal government.
Image via CREDO petition