Saturday, August 15, 2009

Health Care Reform Needs to Start with a Farm Bill

If you have not watched the movie Food, Inc. please make plans to do so. While it did not present any information I personally had not already been exposed to, it really did drive home how skewed and broken the conventional food systems are are in this country.

You see, the problem with the food system the way it is, is that it is exploitative, not only on the animals that suffer in feed lots, but also of the farmers who are sqeezed and exploited by agri-gaints, and the workers in places like meat packing plants.

Our conventional food system keeps people sick. Sorta sick. Well enough to go to work, to earn money to buy pharmaceuticals.

Seriously, how many people are on some sort of chronic pharmaceutical product for a chronic condition? Too many of us. Way too many. And much of it is because of the Farm Bills in this country that subsidize corn and soy, causing Monsanto to get rich, and causing the "little guy" farmer to get squeezed. Causing corn to be so cheap in Mexico (thanks to NAFTA) that Mexico's erstwhile corn farmer has to come here to look for work. Causing all of conventional food to have corn/soy components. Our food supply keeps us all sick.

So a good start to national health care reform would be a farm bill that supports small farmers, makes it illegal to prevent farmers from saving their seeds, makes laws massively in favor of organics, legalizes/certifies grass pastured raw milk and milk products, requires school lunches and food in State run Universities to actually be healthy, etc...you know, so that as a foundation, instead of a health bill that just pays for medicine for sick people, we could have more and more opportunities to be healthy people.

3 comments:

thegeekywife said...

Hi Alana,
When you refer to raw milk, do you mean non-pasteurized AND non-homogenized? Or just non-homogenized? I think I could try the non-homogenized, but I'm too wimpy to go for non-pasteurized.
Peace,
Janelle (new blogger site, still the same nutty writer.)

Alana said...

Oh, I mean non-pasturized from local grass pastured cows. Check out www.realmilk.com for more information on the health benefits of raw milk from grass fed cows.

But whatever you do, do NOT drink raw milk from a "bred to eat corn and get mastitis while making unnatural levels of milk" holstein cows.

The health of the milk really depends on how the cows are cared for.

thegeekywife said...

Thanks for the link, Alana. I have been doing a lot of re-thinking about food since I read Pollan's In Defense of Food last summer. Still taking tiny baby steps but at least I am on the way to eating healthfully.
Peace, J