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Big Ag Booster: Climate Change Really Plot by Global Elites and Bill Gates to Grab Our Land and Force Feed Us Fake Beef

Amanda Radke apparently makes a good living “Fighting for Faith, Family, Freedom, & Farming,” which is code for cranking out pro-corporate Big Ag propaganda writing and speaking and selling cutesy pitches for beefy rural MAGAism.

Amanda Radke, t-shirts for sale, screen cap from amandaradke.com, 2022.03.30.
“Let’s Go Brandin'”, “Beef Bacon Guns & Freedom”…yeah, we get it; Amanda Radke, t-shirts for sale, screen cap from amandaradke.com, 2022.03.30.

But this week, she lets her ag-industrial complex get the best of her, as she generates this absurd screed against innovation in the food industry that aims to reduce the impact of climate change. “The Real Climate Change Agenda Targets Human Life,” reads Radke’s March 28 headline. What follows is a stream of wild and baseless claims invoking Bill Gates and conspiracy-theory bogeymen intended to reinforce the rural mindset that, if you aren’t beef, you’re some sissy elitist traitor to humanity.

Radke opens her anti-anti-climate change screed with the standard corporate Newspeak portraying farmers as the practical environmental saints:

Climate change is the conversation of our generation. As kids in school, we were taught to reuse, reduce, recycle, and that it was our job as citizens of this planet to care for our natural resources.

Growing up on a farm and ranch, this just came naturally. Tending to our land, water, and livestock is our way of life, and it is what we have done well for generations. Our pastures and fields are healthier and more productive today than they were when my grandparents and great-grandparents were farming, and to me, that is the true definition of “sustainability” [Amanda Radke, “The Real Climate Change Agenda Targets Human Life,” amandaradke.com: The Radke Report, 2022.03.28 ].

Notice Radke’s word game: she tries to co-opt the language of the environmental movement, redefining “sustainability” in terms of ag-industrial productivity. Governor Kristi Noem played this same game when she buried environmental protection in the pro-business Department of Agriculture. But the fact that we are squeezing more corn and beans out of our fields and more milk and beef and pork out of our CAFOs does not mean our land is “healthier.” Look at all the topsoil and nutrients washing off our fields, polluting our watersheds, and clogging and killing the Gulf of Mexico at the mouth of the Mississippi River. The only way we can say the land is healthier than it was generations ago is if we take the perspective of a parasite pumping its drained host full of chemicals to keep it alive.

Radke quickly swings from ag-industrial propaganda to wild conspiracy. And conspiracy, thy name is Bill Gates:

Of course, that word has been hijacked by the global elite, who are using that buzz word as an obvious land grab to control the population.

Does that sound like an extreme position to you? It’s shocking, but the evidence is quite strong that this is the plan.

Bill Gates is once again talking about how rich nations need to move to consuming synthetic meat only. In an interview with CBS Evening News, he told viewers, “Unless we can make the cow zero emission, which I’m not sure we can, we do need to get rid of those emissions. It’s not going to happen over night — to scale up and innovate [synthentic {sic} beef]” [Radke, 2022.03.28].

Elites, land grab, Bill Gates, synthetic meat—do pause a moment to catch your breath from those logical leaps.

Echoing the reverse propaganda of the cleverest Trumpists, Radke takes what she is doing—hijacking language of opponents to recast it in her special interest’s favor—and accuses her opponents of that duplicitous action. To give her position traction with her very select audience, she brands those who disagree with her not just “elite”—a word that stirs loads of rural resentment—but “global”, invoking of our rural xenophobia and bunker mentality, our core fear that faraway forces beyond our small towns’ control are conspiring to do us in. (Wendell Berry can put some real meat on this fear-mongering with his long-standing critique of how the modern economy treats all of rural America as a colony, with devastating economic and cultural impacts, but I doubt Radke reads, let alone understands, Berry, as his pro-rural philosophy would never fit with her ag-industrial productivity-über-alles agenda.)

Radke mentions a land grab—is she talking about the factory feedlot owners who try grabbing land for their poop pipelines? The cheese makers who try seizing public right of way for wastewater pipelines? The Iowa Republicans and ethanol plants who will use eminent domain to seize land for their carbon dioxide pipeline in the name of saving corn farmers even though they’re just trying to make a buck off climate change?

Oh no no no no no—pay no attention to the elites right on your doorstep grabbing your land. Fear Bill Gates! Never mind that the Gates quote Radke gives doesn’t say anything about a land grab or controlling any population. Never mind that Gates just states plain agricultural facts: cows fart, those farts contribute to climate change, mitigating climate change requires reducing or containing those farts, and other processes for producing food might release less methane and other climate-changing gases.

Don’t bother tying any knots on the argument—Bill Gates! BILL GATES!!!

Now that Radke has erected the Bill Gates scarecrow, Radke can proceed to criticize people for trying to make money:

While we can all do our part to be even better environmental stewards, it appears to me that investors are simply using the climate change discussion as a way to line their pocketbooks.

Get a load of this — a company called MeliBio has raised $5.7 million to scale and commercialize bee-free honey aimed at disrupting the $10 billion dollar honey industry [Radke, 2022.03.28].

So Radke and her sponsors can promote eating beef so they can make money, but other entrepreneurs can’t promote alternative means of producing honey that might help us survive collapses in bee populations to make money? And one company’s $5.7-million investment is really going to cause that much disruption in a $10-billion industry? And wait—isn’t disruption through innovation how capitalism works? Isn’t that disruption and innovation and capitalism tucked in between the Guns and Freedom on Radke’s shirt?

According to the Business Wire, “MeliBio’s first product was indistinguishable to traditional honey in an industry blind taste test and over 30 companies around the world signed up to be among the first to use the products. Bee-free honey addresses the looming impact of the climate crisis on the honey industry, including biodiversity loss and supply chain issues” [Radke, 2022.03.28].

So MeliBio makes a product that tastes good and has lots of positive environmental impacts; why shouldn’t they make money?

That’s just one of hundreds of examples I could find where slick investors are playing God with our natural resources and trying to “disrupt” the market on traditional food items and replace it with their new and trendy imitation products [Radke, 2022.03.28].

Inventors, manufacturers, salespeople, and other hustlers are out there every day trying to convince people to change their shopping habits and buy new goods and services. Sometimes those new goods and services are brief trends, sometimes they are brilliant and lasting successes, and sometimes they fail and are forgotten. That’s capitalism. Is Radke afraid that beef makers and her other favored Big Ag producers can’t survive healthy capitalist competition?

As these investors attempt to phase out naturally-occurring foods like meat, dairy, eggs, and even honey, one has to wonder what is the climate impact of these synthetic, imitation products. And more importantly, how will these products impact human health and wellness overtime? [Radke, 2022.03.28]

Yes, one does have to wonder, and we should study new products to make sure they aren’t harming human health and the environment. But we know the harms that Radke’s favored products cause to human health and the environment. So why can’t we look for healthier alternatives? Radke is welcome to provide evidence of the health harms of new food products, but she doesn’t do so in this essay. This essay is about emotion, not evidence.

Now, you might be thinking — well, I will never buy these products, I want the real deal!

You and I would agree on that sentiment. However, it’s all about coercing and changing consumer habits. How can the elite get that done? Sin taxes, social credit scores, increased burdensome regulations, bad press, celebrity campaigns, lawsuits aimed at producers by animal rights activists and environmental extremists, and the list goes on [Radke, 2022.03.28].

Just like they’re coming to grab your guns and ballots, the “elite” are coming to grab your groceries. The only list that goes on here is the list of lies that people like Radke will tell to preserve their agenda.

Are alternative food businesses trying to change consumer habits? Sure. And that’s no more nefarious than Radke’s effort to prevent consumers from changing their habits in the interest of her favored market players.

But everyone else’s efforts to promote change Radke and her industry don’t like is a plot:

It’s all about conditioning people and changing human habits overtime. It’s why we’ve seen newspapers warn us that one day beef would be a “luxury” only enjoyed by the elite, or why the push for electric cars is so great right now as fuel prices are skyrocketing. And if monopolizing on a crisis doesn’t do the trick, they can always condition us to change our habits through social credit scores.

Mastercard recently unveiled a new carbon calculator tool to track your carbon footprint data with each of your transactions. The Mastercard Carbon Calculator would inform consumers about the carbon footprint of their purchases, providing a snapshot of the carbon emissions generated by each of their purchases with tips for living more sustainability.

The website reads like a snapshot of the Green New Deal, and I believe programs of this ilk will first be sold to us as voluntary programs before it’s determined that they should be mandatory.

Will our credit cards be shut off if its deemed our climate impact is too high? Would that limit the fuel I could buy, the meat I could eat, or the activities I enjoy? How is that okay in a free society? [Radke, 2022.03.28].

Good grief—extrapolating a private company’s response to customer desires to measure and mitigate their own climate impact into a global social control plot makes me wonder if Radke is turning into Mitchell’s other great conspiracy writer, Steve Sibson.

Having properly stoked her faithful readers’ misdirected fears, Radke rallies them to join her in propagandizing for Big Ag:

If you are alarmed like I am, then it is past time to push back. To combat this trend, let’s begin by shouting from the rooftops what farmers and ranchers do really well in regards to conservation, stewardship, improving our soil health, and providing the essentials to enrich human life We have an amazing success story to tell, but if we sit silent on the sidelines, the narrative against us is strong and relentless. Let’s get to work! [Radke, 2022.03.28]

Industrial farming has cost Iowa more than half of its topsoil. Soil erosion caused by industrial farming has caused lower crop yields in South Dakota. Loss of soil nutrients due to industrial farming has required farmers to drench their land with costly chemicals (“synthetic, imitation” fertilizers, Radke should seethe as she does about alternative meat and honey) to maintain yields. All the antibiotics Radke and her fellow beef producers have to use to keep their crowded cattle from dying before the slaughter imperil public health by fostering antibiotic resistance and superbugs. Meatpacking puts exploited workers at risk of illness and injury that they don’t face in synthetic protein factories. None of that sounds like “an amazing success story,” and Radke and the ag-industrial complex aren’t shouting that story from the rooftops.

Radke’s headline indicated she would tell us how people fighting climate change are targeting human life. She never ties that bow: she never shows us that Bill Gates and the companies she mentions who are trying to fight climate change are putting lives at risk. Companies fighting climate change are certainly trying to make money, just like Radke’s favored farmers and ranchers do, and they are targeting human life… but it seems they are targeting human life and all life with a life preserver, with products that will do less harm and help humanity and the planet live longer.

See through the baloney (perhaps I should say the “synthetic, imitation” arguments), and Radke’s essay boils down to Bill Gates evil, buy more beef! Radke offers no logic or evidence, because she’s not speaking to an audience looking for logic or evidence. She’s speaking to interested producers locked into industrial agriculture who want to be told that they possess flawless virtue and that anyone who questions their business practices, not to mention challenges them in fair free-market competition, is part of a conspiracy of global elites out to destroy freedom and human life itself.

Radke is doing for her industry exactly what she accuses her targets of doing: “using the climate change discussion as a way to line their pocketbooks.”

24 Comments

  1. larry kurtz 2022-03-30

    So, about the “management” of apex predators: why is cougar and wolf slaughter the only answer to curbing marauding livestock killers while Bayer Crop Science, Koch Industries, et al. are allowed free range? And if the free market is such a cool deal, why aren’t cougars and wolves protected instead of slaughtered en masse?

    Coyotes are mesopredators yet Citibank is too big to fail.

    Reproduction is the reason; food is the fuel. “Modern society” is a product of the forbidden fruit–agriculture.

    Yes, humans are apex predators and predatory capitalism exists because it has no natural enemies.

  2. O 2022-03-30

    I tried an impossible Whopper at Burger King; I thought it was good — not better, maybe a bit dryer — but good.

  3. Cory Allen Heidelberger Post author | 2022-03-30

    Ah! But that same article I linked to O notes that the McPlant has been a great success in the U.K. and Ireland, where McDonald’s has rolled out the faux-burger nationwide. The article says McDonald’s simply marketed the McPlant harder in the UK and Ireland.

  4. Ska Sunka 2022-03-30

    You fight the market at your peril. The market always wins.

  5. O 2022-03-30

    Ska, I don’t accept that “the market” is an independent actor. US ag (Big Ag) has invested in messaging, farming practices, and legislation that promote a deadly lifestyle for Americans: a diet too heavy on meat and FAR too heavy on sugar(corn syrup). That perverted market is killing Americans.

  6. Donald Pay 2022-03-30

    Yeah, she’s way off in la-la land, not that some of Bill Gates’ ideas are all that great. The worst one, she didn’t really touch. Gates’ is sucking up massive federal subsidies for his experimental nuclear plants, one of which he wants to stick in Wyoming, where all those supposedly smart cowboys live. The cowboys seem to be falling for that Gates project. This nuke plant could never fly in the free market, while some of the plant-based alternatives to meat she mentions are competing for market share. It strikes me that she lets the socialist nuke plant pass by without a mention, but tries to drum up hate against plant-based products, which are being supported by the free market. Her priorities are way, way off.

    You know I never realized how much a part of the “global elite” I must be. I’ve been involved in the fight against global warming since the 1970s, when I was a poor student living in substandard housing In Sioux Falls, and working at minimum wage. She needs to re-adjust her focus. Climate change is as much of a threat to agriculture as it is to the so-called “global elite.” It’s going to take all of us to find a solution.

  7. Cory Allen Heidelberger Post author | 2022-03-30

    We can identify plenty of things that Bill Gates does wrong, but Radke’s invocation of his name on the issue of climate change and alternative food production is pure propaganda, an ad hominem distraction to rile up her industrial base and keep them making noise.

    If I were generous, I’d say she’s behaving no differently from McDonalds in marketing her product. McDonald’s cranked out ads to promote its McPlant in the UK and Ireland, and that marketing resulted in better sales. The difference is that McDonald’s didn’t say, “Meat will kill you and the planet; eat these vegan burgers instead!” They offered McPlant as a vegan option and raised awareness to get people to try it. That marketing worked: it apparently got more people to try it than if they’d just put it on the menu quietly to avoid backlash from angry farmers like Radke, and then a lot of those people evidently found the product good enough to keep buying it. McDonald’s saw an opportunity to expand options and bring in more customers.

    Radke’s marketing is, of course, different: she’s viewing the food market as a zero-sum game and worries that everyone who tries a McPlant, Impossible Whopper, or some other food alternative will drop animal protein cold and put her out of business. She thus slags those alternative products, not with facts about those products, but with scarecrows, conspiracy theories, Newspeak, and the ever-present MAGA-ism that suggests you’re weird, if not evil, if you don’t eat beef and instead do anything different. She fails to see alternative food producers as partners in feeding the world with common interests in conservation and fighting climate change. She’s just out to destroy the competition and make everyone buy her industry’s product.

  8. O 2022-03-30

    Do US farmers/ranchers want to shift from cattle, sugar syrup and gasoline production into healthier food options — which hall have lesser environmental implications? The American diet (for food and energy) has been rigged to create demand for the market that exists.

    Throw in some MAGA for the way things are now, and I don’t see producers making a switch anytime soon.

  9. larry kurtz 2022-03-30

    Is a human trophic level just the larder for a pack of predatory oligarchs who feed on the miserable and the quarrelsome?

    Probably.

  10. Nick Nemec 2022-03-30

    What? She didn’t call out George Soros, the Rothschilds, Bilderberg meetings and Freemasonry?

  11. John 2022-03-30

    Ha, ha, ha. Radke’s full of bull.
    The shifts to: a) plant-based meats (Beyond Meat, Impossible Burger, etc), and to b) cultivated proteins is about:
    1) improved health benefits, and 2) economics of lower costs.
    Big wasteful, commercial ag is being disrupted and, like the internal auto companies – they cannot do anything about it, except whine and be stockgroaners.

    When one asks, how did the ag economy get to this place its at now – the answer is the economics of lower costs.
    Far less expensive to raise livestock than having 300 million people hunt buffalo, deer, antelope, elk.
    Of course, the land grant colleges are beyond the caboose at this technological transformation since they are opted by the big ag firms.

  12. larry kurtz 2022-03-30

    Using data from the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations on human food consumption around the world, the IFREMER scientists assigned a trophic level to each food we eat. They found that, on average, humans get 80% of their daily calories from plants and 20% from meat and fish, according to the team’s 2013 study results, published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. That puts us at an average trophic level of 2.21 — somewhere between anchovies and pigs. But humans’ trophic levels vary worldwide. In Burundi, for instance, plants made up 96.7% of the local diet in 2009, giving those in that country a trophic level of 2.04. Meanwhile, those in Iceland, where the diet consisted of around 50% meat that same year, had a trophic level of 2.57.

    https://www.livescience.com/are-humans-top-predators

  13. Donald Pay 2022-03-30

    I eat meat. I love meat. Humans evolved as omnivores, so I feel I should eat meat as part of a proper diet. How much meat I eat as a proportion of my total food intake has gotten smaller over the years, and the kind of meat I eat has shifted more to chicken and less beef. It’s not a climate change issue. It’s a health issue. And a cost issue.

    I think ranchers do a pretty good job running cow-calf operations, and grass-fed beef is fine. A steer is just a way to process plants, so how much different is it than plant-based “meat.” After they’ve processed enough grass and forbs cattle end up in a feedlot, which is more like a way to manufacture factory meat. I’m not sure this factory meat is real meat either, and that’s the biggest share of the so-called “meat” market. Poultry and pork chops are mostly industrial food, not real meat, too. That crap you buy at the Hy-Vee meat counter may look like meat, but it comes out of the corporate ag factory. So, I don’t know that there’s all that much difference between manufactured plant-based foods and factory-farmed cattle, hogs and chicken.

  14. larry kurtz 2022-03-30

    Pulse crops like lentils, split peas, pintos, black beans and chickpeas or garbanzo beans are legumes that restore lost nitrogen in corn-damaged soils.

    Farm to table is now.

  15. jerry 2022-03-30

    Takes a lot of water to produce a pound of meat. These plant based “meats” are made from soybeans and other plant based crops, wonder why farmers aren’t denouncing this goof ball? Pulse crops take less water, water is life.

    “Grab our land and force feed” Where in Native American history have I heard that before??

  16. Mark Anderson 2022-03-30

    O, the impossible isn’t a dream, its great. I lived on beef, pork, and cheese, ended up with six bypasses over three years ago. I’m now healthier than I’ve been in 25 years. I eat some chicken, some fish, sardines are good. My diet is better than it ever has been. It was tough to change and you have to force it. When I was recovering in the hospital they had horrible unhealthy food. I went through Ornish and they had healthy horrible food. My wife learned how to make great healthy food and it’s been perfect. I’ve lost 25 lbs. I’ve always thought my diet would be illegal in South Dakota. It’s too bad that cheese is more addictive than cocaine and steak…. still miss that one.
    The people who lived by the food poster for breakfast, lunch and dinner, we had on the wall in grade school, are now all dead. I should have looked at who had that printed, Radke is working for them I’m sure. The only beef I’m going to treat myself with, is some Renner Corner spitzmur, some things are worth dying for.

  17. Arlo Blundt 2022-03-30

    Well…This is a great conversation and I thank all the correspondents for their thoughtful input….I’m a lifelong beef eater (with a couple bypasses) and my wife has become a vegan and organic plant eater. We always have had an organic garden out back. I don’t bad mouth ranchers and small farmers, though I’m way down on feed lots, herbicide and pesticides, the damage wrought by tiling vast acerages (we now have lakes full of nitrates where none have ever been), and industrialized ag. Yet, I don’t feel comfortable with a blanket condemnation of my friends and neighbors for earning a living. I think the market is changing and will change dramatically with the next generation of food consumers…we already see it. The world changes and I hope it is changing for the better. This Radke person is whistling in the dark.

  18. Cory Allen Heidelberger Post author | 2022-03-30

    I just finished off an Impossible Whopper at Burger King. Tasted fine to me. A far greater atrocity than synthetic meat is these fake onion rings, circles of breaded onion paste that don’t seem to contain any actual coherent rings of onion. Bill Gates must be pushing dehydrated onion powder.

  19. larry kurtz 2022-03-30

    As if peace, love, understanding and fake onion rings had anything to do with the price of beans.

  20. DaveFN 2022-03-30

    A 360 degree cost/benefit analysis is required to begin to judge any of these alternatives, including artificial honey (which supposedly had provisional patents filed several years ago of which I can find nothing of the kind) . Not that any such cost/benefit analysis is possible considering the many factors which must be taken into consideration many of which we have little knowledge owing to lacking studies that might attempt to quantify and compare them with alternatives. Not unlike most matters which we would like to think are matters of absolute knowledge—which doesn’t exist.

    Capitalism makes objects of us all. Venture capitalism, included, when it comes to promulgating artificial honey. Workers are paid less than the value they create for their employers.

    Alternative foods are certainly possible (protein is protein no matter the source, carbohydrate the same) but the cost/benefit analyses don’t exist that would allow us any way to assess the alternatives.

  21. jerry 2022-03-31

    The Dutch have an idea about health. They are tall and they ride bikes, but not only that, there is a solidarity with the people.

    “Ministers in the Netherlands are keen for the country to shift to a more environmentally friendly diet, agreeing to investigate whether or not a tax on meat would reduce consumption.
    Farms Minister Henk Staghouwer told MPs that it was necessary to look at whether implementing such a tax was possible before going to all the trouble of investigating whether such a tax would achieve the desired aims.
    The ruling coalition have already agreed to implement higher taxes on soft drinks, adding a sugar tax and scrapping taxes on fruit and vegetables.”

    The Dutch are striving for a more balanced diet for the overall health of their people.
    “Ministers said that the government would aim to reduce the current 60 percent animal intake down to 50 per cent and to increase the current 40 percent vegetable protein intake to a 50 percent, to create a 50:50 balance.”

    Nothing indicates that the Dutch government is on a land takeover or striving to put producers out of business. What it seems to be doing is working to mitigate their carbon footprint through tax and education.

    As Staghouwer said: “It is an ambitious target and requires the population at large to change their eating patterns”

    Any group of people that can tame the sea, the Dutch have my vote of confidence that they can achieve that ambitious target.

  22. jerry 2022-04-02

    great link mfi, that’s about as on topic as it gets. That’s right in your backyard. We must come to grips on the idea that our sources of food are very likely to keep getting virus after virus that transfers to humans like swine flu.

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