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By Jake Miller
August 17th, 2007
The Nyeleni communications team just sent us a link to a very inspirational video, a trailer for a documentary on the global food sovereignty movement and Nyeleni 2007, the Forum for Food Sovereigty.
The video is subtitled in Spanish, but for those who don't speak Spanish, many of the interviews were conducted in English.
The New York Times reports today that, "CARE, one of the world's biggest charities, is walking away from some $45 million a year in federal financing, saying American food aid is not only plagued with inefficiencies, but also may hurt some of the very poor people it aims to help." (CARE Turns Down Federal Funds for Food Aid)
By Daniel Moss
July 28th, 2007
Presenter: Diamantino Nhampossa is the Executive Coordinator for the National Small Scale Farmers Union in Mozambique and a Member of International Coordinating Committee of the Via Campesina for the Africa Region. (Contact information for Diamantino Nhampossa: firstname.lastname@example.org)
Presenter: Anna Lappé is the author of the best selling book "Grub" and a past Kellogg Foundation Food and Society Policy Fellow.
Moderator and Presenter: Corrina Steward, Resource Rights Specialist, Grassroots International. Corrina was a participant in the Forum on Food Sovereignty along with a number of Grassroots International partners.
From all the roughing up in the press of China for their shoddy and criminal regulatory neglect, you’d think it was downright patriotic in the US to regulate self-interested corporations. The hypocrisy of our tepid and schizoid embrace of corporate regulation drives me nuts.
Reporting on the discovery of anti-freeze in toothpaste and the execution of the head of China’s Food and Drug Administration equivalent, the New York Times and others have written about recent failures of the Chinese regulatory system which has resulted in dozens of consumer deaths and by many accounts, the slow poisoning of millions. The scrutiny and criticism is welcome and overdue.
My country – Mozambique – is one of those African countries in which the consequences of colonization, neo- or re-colonization, and structural adjustment programs are visible. There is a growing number of poor people living in rural areas without basic public services like water, health services and education, while our main urban centres are showing a concentration of wealth in the hands of a small group of people. The suburbs are becoming more crowded than ever, and everyday life is a big challenge.
Are you ready? Or are you still tallying up the costs to the commons from the first Green Revolution? I invite you to listen in on a fascinating debate between farmer advocates and the money behind the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA).
What single bill – albeit with a great many tentacles – currently sits before Congress and will define the future of so much of the commons – our land use, soil and water quality, the future of our rural communities?
Look no further than the tip of your fork: the Farm Bill.
Michael Pollan, in the New York Times magazine, April 22, 2007, described it this way: “This resolutely unglamorous and head-hurtingly complicated piece of legislation…sets the rules for the American food system – indeed to a considerable extent, for the world’s food system.”
“Our Youth is not the Future, Our Youth is the Present” – Julian Moya, Southwest Organizing Project (SWOP), Albuquerque, New Mexico
“We cannot choose the historical conditions we find ourselves in, but we can choose how we respond to them” – Ajamu Baraka, Director, U.S. Human Rights Network, Atlanta, Georgia
These two quotes, among many other hopeful messages I heard at the U.S. Social Forum (USSF) from June 27 to July 1, 2007 in Atlanta epitomized for me the USSF – what it stands for and envisions in terms of a different kind of United States. Both represent the truth embedded in the official slogan of the USSF – Another World is Possible; Another US is Necessary.
1,200 indigenous people, fishermen and peasant farmers occupied the construction site of a major river rerouting project of the São Francisco river in protest. Members of different organizations and social movements in northeast Brazil are demanding that the federal government stop the implementation of this project and guarantee indigenous people’s land rights in the area.
“We are being evicted from our land for this by people who are not concerned with the river or with the livelihood of our families” said Neguinho Truká, leader of the Truká ethnic group.
Please join Grassroots International at the United States Social Forum, Atlanta, June 27-30, 2007. The US Social Forum is more than a conference, more than a networking bonanza, more than a reaction to war and repression, more than a collection of local solutions. It's an important moment to further build the global movement for social justice.