Chicago Boyz

What Are Chicago Boyz Readers Reading?

Recommended Photo Store
Buy Through Our Amazon Link or Banner to Support This Blog
  •   Enter your email to be notified of new posts:
  •   Problem? Question?
  •   Contact Authors:

  • CB Twitter Feed
  • Lex's Tweets
  • Jonathan's Tweets
  • Blog Posts (RSS 2.0)
  • Blog Posts (Atom 0.3)
  • Incoming Links
  • Recent Comments

    • Loading...
  • Authors

  • Notable Discussions

  • Recent Posts

  • Blogroll

  • Categories

  • Archives

  • How Faddish Leftism Kills: Part 2,658,893

    Posted by Shannon Love on May 29th, 2009 (All posts by )

    While people in Zimbabwe starve, Robert Mugabe’s [sic] “consumer rights group” raids stores that sell genetically modified food. In Zimbabwe, GM plants provide basic staple foods that the country must import. Their loss seriously depletes the food supply.

    This is a case in which the intellectual fads of western leftists in rich countries mutate into something lethal in the less sophisticated political systems of the 3rd world. In this case, the hysteria over genetically modified foods promoted by revenue-seeking, activist-corporations (e.g., Greenpeace) in the developed world provides the moral justification for a thug like Mugabe to kill people.

    In the developed world the anti-GM hysteria is nothing more than an effete affectation of upper income pseudo-intellectuals who use expensive, hand grown foods as status-generating conspicuous consumption. It does little harm and possibly some good in separating miseducated fools from their money and transferring it to more responsible con artists. In the undeveloped world, where people have far less margin and need to scrape for every bit of efficiency in of their food production, the imposition of this pseudo-intellectual hysterics makes people go hungry and malnourished. 

    Much of the developed world has suffered under socialism-generated poverty since the end of the colonial era. Mugabe is far from the first despot to use the rationales generated by western leftists as excuses to oppress and impoverish their people. Even India, the jewel of 3rd-world democracy and stable governance, smothered under nearly 40 years of socialism until the fall of communism caused them to liberalize. Since then, the growth in their standard of living has been explosive. Where would they be today had not western leftists convinced them to follow the path of stagnation and poverty.

    How many people have died needlessly of poverty in the last 60 years just so western leftists could congratulate themselves for being so damn smart?


    8 Responses to “How Faddish Leftism Kills: Part 2,658,893”

    1. fred lapides Says:

      true enough. and how many people have also died prior to “leftist” ideology because of Rightist imperialism, under various conquering empires, such as Portual, France, Great Britain, and Spain, and Germany?

    2. Helen Says:

      Whether the imperialism was rightist or not, that utterly predictable point is irrelevant. When you look at the post-colonial record of Africa it shows that all those oft-repeated horrors pale into insignificance. Every single African country is worse off now than it was when it became indepndent. Well, OK, maybe DR Congo is not MUCH worse off. Mugabe’s Matableleland campaign alone killed around 30,000 people.

      On the other hand, I really do not think this has anything to do with Greenpeace. There is no need for knee-jerk reactions on either side. Mugabe’s thugs do not have enough food themselves so they will raid anything that looks edible. What on earth makes you think that any of that genetically modified food is imported or if it is, gets to any of the people who need it. Zimbabwe, let me remind you, was a net exporter of various things, including food before Mugabe really went nuts.

    3. Shannon Love Says:

      Fred Lapidies,

      true enough. and how many people have also died prior to “leftist” ideology because of Rightist imperialism, under various conquering empires, such as Portual, France, Great Britain, and Spain, and Germany?

      Interesting that you associate imperialism with the American right when in fact the American right as defined by the pro-business Republicans had a century long history of opposing colonialism. the primary drivers of colonialism were the fading aristocratic classes. Worse from your point of view, leftist such as Marxist were rabidly pro-colonialism until the 1920’s. They thought that colonialism would accelerate the evolution of all cultures to the communist end state.

      More importantly, imperialism saved lives in most cases. Most areas of the world were engaged in continuos states of warfare with imperialism put an end to. Imperialism tied remote areas into the planetary trading network which eliminated natural famines. Education, health care and representative governments all increased under imperialism.

      I think it very telling that you have to go back a century or more to try to find and example in which non-leftist could conceivably done as much damage as contemporary leftist. Says a lot about who is doing the real damage now, doesn’t it?

    4. Shannon Love Says:


      On the other hand, I really do not think this has anything to do with Greenpeace.

      Greenpeace has been on the forefront of the vilification of GM foods. They waged a successful campaign to block rice engineered to produce vitamin A thus condemning hundreds of thousands of people a year to blindness from vitamin A deficiency.

      I would bet money that if you queried Mugabe’s thuglets about their rationales they would whip out at least one quote from Greenpeace.

    5. Helen Says:

      I would bet money that if you queried Mugabe’s thuglets about their rationales they would whip out at least one quote from Greenpeace.

      Maybe they would and maybe they wouldn’t but since they raided every other food outlet and routinely steal all the aid that comes in, this is all irrelevant. What is outrageous is that we are still sending aid to keep that mega-criminal and his equally criminal friends and relations in power.

    6. Ginny Says:

      Then there’s malaria. I sometimes wonder if history will be as blind as we have been in this century and will keep repeating Fred’s version of events.

      Helen, our good intentions seem to be the bricks such leaders use to pave the way to their hells; if we weren’t around, would the leaders be caught in the quicksand of their own making and disappear? Would they be any less effective at starving their populations? I’m curious. I’m pretty certain that cultivating dependence is a really really bad idea. Assasinating leaders bent on democide certainly has its drawbacks – we probably shouldn’t feel sufficiently omniscient for such actions (although it doesn’t take too much omniscience to predict the trajectory of Zimbabwe any more than the trajectory of Venzuela). Your outrage seems justified – I’m just wondering what options do we have other than ignoring suffering or funneling aid through tyrants. I guess we can funnel it through the UN, but that seems to merely increase suffering, as we see in the UN refugee camps.

    7. UNRR Says:

      This post has been linked for the HOT5 Daily 5/30/2009, at The Unreligious Right

    8. Helen Says:


      The first thing we must learn is that, at the very least, we must do no wrong. In other words, let us stop aid that keeps bloodthirsty kleptocrats in power and destroys African societies. Then we can think again. Trade, of course. But what else? What kind of investment is possible that is not money simply handed over to those kleptocrats or NGOs?

      I am reading Dambila Moyo’s “Dead Aid”, which has very strong views on the subject, though the book itself is a little curate’s eggish. I shall certainly blog about it when I finish.

    Leave a Reply

    Comments Policy:  By commenting here you acknowledge that you have read the Chicago Boyz blog Comments Policy, which is posted under the comment entry box below, and agree to its terms.

    A real-time preview of your comment will appear under the comment entry box below.

    Comments Policy

    Chicago Boyz values reader contributions and invites you to comment as long as you accept a few stipulations:

    1) Chicago Boyz authors tend to share a broad outlook on issues but there is no party or company line. Each of us decides what to write and how to respond to comments on his own posts. Occasionally one or another of us will delete a comment as off-topic, excessively rude or otherwise unproductive. You may think that we deleted your comment unjustly, and you may be right, but it is usually best if you can accept it and move on.

    2) If you post a comment and it doesn't show up it was probably blocked by our spam filter. We batch-delete spam comments, typically in the morning. If you email us promptly at we may be able to retrieve and publish your comment.

    3) You may use common HTML tags (italic, bold, etc.). Please use the "href" tag to post long URLs. The spam filter tends to block comments that contain multiple URLs. If you want to post multiple URLs you should either spread them across multiple comments or email us so that we can make sure that your comment gets posted.

    4) This blog is private property. The First Amendment does not apply. We have no obligation to publish your comments, follow your instructions or indulge your arguments. If you are unwilling to operate within these loose constraints you should probably start your own blog and leave us alone.

    5) Comments made on the Chicago Boyz blog are solely the responsibility of the commenter. No comment on any post on Chicago Boyz is to be taken as a statement from or by any contributor to Chicago Boyz, the Chicago Boyz blog, its administrators or owners. Chicago Boyz and its contributors, administrators and owners, by permitting comments, do not thereby endorse any claim or opinion or statement made by any commenter, nor do they represent that any claim or statement made in any comment is true. Further, Chicago Boyz and its contributors, administrators and owners expressly reject and disclaim any association with any comment which suggests any threat of bodily harm to any person, including without limitation any elected official.

    6) Commenters may not post content that infringes intellectual property rights. Comments that violate this rule are subject to deletion or editing to remove the infringing content. Commenters who repeatedly violate this rule may be banned from further commenting on Chicago Boyz. See our DMCA policy for more information.