It’s the food stupid…
“Tolerance and apathy are the last virtues of a dying society.” – Aristotle
Source: Terminal apathy?: What rats say about Americans
February 29, 2016
(INTELLIHUB) — When considering the cause of national apathy, Americans are evidently physiologically and socially similar to the junk food addled laboratory rat. Both tolerate repressive environments while confined against their will in a maze. In the natural desire to escape and find freedom, like the affected rat, Americans passively accept their confinement, acquiescing without struggle to a life of controlled stimulation and manipulation by all manner of drugs, tests, and mandated choice of direction. In a country objectively descending into chaos, why don’t American care? In recent studies at the University of California/ Los Angeles (UCLA), these same rats evidence one reason for America’s irrational disinterest in self-preservation.
In ever-more-frequent and growing worldwide protests, resistance to the American empire’s imposed maze increases. Strangely, Americans offer no similar resistance at all. The social, economic, and political problems in the USA mirror those of an empire afflicted world, yet in the “exceptional” nation most would rather chew off their tails than find the energy to extricate themselves from their maze. Examples of exceptionally paltry public resistance and protest abound. Rarely does an American protest amount to more than a few hundred temporarily outraged souls who then quickly return to their couches when told to do so by the well-armed militia of the government they came into the streets to change.
Why is America the isolated case study of this strange domestic malady that may best be summed-up as: clinical, terminal apathy?
The cause of this national apathy seems to be clear as shown in results from the UCLA study: it’s the food. Processed, adulterated, adjunct laden, GMO-filled junk food; the preferred and almost unavoidable daily diet of Americans.
Dr. Aaron Blaisdell, a professor of psychology at the UCLA /College of Letters and Science and a member of UCLA’s Brain Research Institute, used rats to determine if a diet of poor quality processed foods resulted directly in obesity, or if the actual initial result was fatigue.
Dr. Blaisdell’s team placed thirty-two female rats on one of two diets for six months. The first received a standard rat’s diet, consisted of relatively unprocessed foods like ground corn and fish meal. As a substitute for a junk food diet the second Americanized group received highly processed food of lower quality that included substantially more sugar. As expected, “One diet led to obesity, the other didn’t,” said Blaisdell, as quoted in UCLA’s, “ Newsroom.” However…
“Our data suggest that diet-induced obesity is a cause, rather than an effect, of laziness [apathy].” concluded Blaisdell. “…the [poor quality] diet causes obesity, which causes fatigue.”
The rats were given a task in which they were required to press a lever to receive a food or water reward. The rats on the junk food diet demonstrated impaired performance, taking substantially longer breaks than the lean rats before returning to the task. During repeated 30-minute sessions the overweight rats became more lazy due to their increasing obesity, taking breaks that were nearly twice as long as clean rats.
Dr. Blaisdell’s studying clearly indicates that junk food, while causing obesity, subsequently causes laziness and fatigue. Combined, the political cousin of these two symptoms is: apathy.
By all metrics, Americans consume the most quantity of the worst quality food supply in the developed world, as such leading in obesity. In America this endemic apathy is causing Americans to have little interest in their own increasing domestic peril. In a nation of increasing authoritarian governmental control, American processed junk food may have now become the most effective US government weapon for controlling the reactions of its own population. Examples of irrational American apathy are evident every week.
Just this past weekend, on Feb 27, 2016, seventeen-year-old Abdi Mohamed, was shot three times by Salt Lake City police responding to a dispute. Not taking time to digest the situation and realize that Mohamad, who was not threatening them in any way, only held a piece of a broom stick, they opened fire within seconds of their arrival. The resulting protest of reportedly no more than one hundred outraged souls, were next met with the predicable draconian response of over one hundred cops being called to provide back-up; in force. This routine military response has one emphatic message for the protesting public, ” Take your First Amendment home…and stay there.” Accepting this message, by Sunday all outrage was over. Considering this obvious example of America’s growing police disregard for life, this protest should have been in the thousands. What then?
In dozens of countries across the globe rebellion in the thousands and tens-of-thousands by outraged nationalist populations is growing despite brutal American-backed and funded crackdowns by their governments. This weekend alone saw huge protests which all amounted to a public rejection of the influence of the American empire on their politicians and therefore their happiness. Consider…
Just hours ago, in London over 10,000 protested the US/NATO imposed risk to their lives of Trident submarine ICBM’s. In Poland, Ukraine and South Korea equally large protests also took place against the American controlled national policies imposed on them. In Iran and Ireland national and local elections took place peacefully, the results also showing that their citizens too were casting out the politicians who favor guns over food. In France, where all GMO’s are still banned, thousands of French farmers have battled police due to their lives being destroyed by US required French sanctions against these farmers exporting their crops to the once lucrative and huge Russian market. Not surprisingly, and for good reason, these protesters have had enough of the “benefits” of American empire and imposed democracy. As the military might of the empire kills scores of innocents around the globe daily, while the quality of life continues to diminish, resistance is not, for these citizens, futile. It is daily.
Why is this not the case in the American homeland?
As for North America, Canada and Mexico have also recently produced huge protests. Starting with the 2012 Montreal student protests where 100,000 angry students protested tuition fee increases. When Canada’s legislature attempted to quell the protest by passing emergency legislation allowing for new draconian anti-protest laws, this huge protest then grew exponentially to more than one million citizens. Anti- government protests in major Canadian cities have been large and frequent since. Subsequently, on November 4, 2015, the Liberal Party, led by now Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, won 184 seats, turning-out the Conservative Party, led by incumbent, ultra-Zionist/ corporatist, former Prime Minister Stephen Harper.
In Mexico City protesters hit the one million mark, also in 2012, within minutes of the announcement of the most recent presidential election results that declared president-elect, Enrique Pena Nieto, the victor. Thanks to American made Diebold electronic voting machines (yes, those Diebold voting machines), the results had been rigged. Mexicans knew it. They were mad as hell. They went to the streets.
In late 2014 forty-three very innocent college students were “disappeared” by Mexican government troops. That same government has been covering up the criminals involved ever since. But Mexican protests have been often, very large and unyielding to governments demand that these anti-government protests end. The protesters will not go home.
However back in the Homeland, where over 1300 Americans were killed by police fire power in 2015, many of whom were as completely innocent of any crime that justified deadly force, this weekend produced just one completely ineffective protest. When killer cops get off from prosecution Scott-free, outrage generally amounts to, as scene in Salt Lake City, a mere hundred-or-so protesters. Even the anti-authoritarian spectacle of Furguson, Missouri accomplished nothing except to showcase the futility of protest to the apathetic public watching on the TV. But it was not the fault of these sincere, passionate and legitimately outraged protesters who did put their freedom on the line at these small protests. The real problem in changing endemic domestic American abuses: enough people willing to rise to their feet and effect the true “power of the people!”
The most demonstrative recent example of the national terminal apathy of Americans was illustrated at the 2012 Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, North Carolina.
The government and the local police expected big trouble. Uncle Sam knew his people had good reason to take to the streets outside the convention. Four years of Pres. Obama’s broken promises, lobbyists, high unemployment, growing authoritarian state, endemic corruption in banks, business, government and sports gave many good reasons for American outrage to hit the streets of Charlotte en mass. Just months before, the dozens of Occupy camps in major cities nation-wide, as the only cohesive national protest movement, had all been closed-down in the space of two very violent and draconian days at the hands of nation-wide police. So, when NSA, CIA, and Charlotte police authorities publicly stated their assumption of over 100,000 upset Americans showing up to protest, their estimate seemed well founded.
Taking no chances the federal government provided Charlotte $50 million, and added $50 million more, to defend Pres. Obama from “the will of the people.” As witnessed then, this funding produced a truly awe-inspiring showcase of America’s domestic authoritarian, anti-protest arsenal. The American government was ready to take on America’s collective best shot, no matter what, at resisting Obama’s new definition of democracy.
Anyone coming to Charlotte found that walking the streets was a laboratory maze in itself. The maze was not here metaphorical, consisting of literally several miles of continuous sixteen foot high black-painted metal, crowd-proof fencing along both sides of the entire preselected boulevards that would be used to keep the loonies on the path. Hordes of cops by the hundreds- thirty-five hundred in total -funneled protesters back into the maze at every intersection, all dressed in full riot gear and showing different shoulder badges with insignia from police departments as far away as Austin, Texas; Chicago, Illinois; New York City and Albuquerque, New Mexico. Each cop grimaced at this arrogant display of democracy before their face masks and batons. New police vehicles were everywhere; from ATVs and MRAPS, to refrigerated trucks and golf carts. Dozens of brand new “Police” mountain bikes and moto-cross bikes stood in rows of twenty, some under fat cops who sat, watching-on menacingly. No less than four helicopters were in the air at all times. Police cars, state, federal, and local were evident by the hundreds. CIA had commandeered a local junior college and US Army troops maintained defenses outside the city. Just in case. These were the front lines, ready for anything an understandably outraged public of 100,000 plus might dish out.
The cops need not have bothered.
The largest protest of the six-day event was a paltry 2000 people. Almost all other protests numbered no more than three hundred. The protesters were always outnumbered by the cops and the press. Considering Charlotte has over 150 million Americans within a five hundred mile drive, why such a paltry, ineffective, impotent turnout throughout the national six day event?
“ We may have found a cure for most evils; but we have found no remedy for the worst of them all, the apathy of human beings.”- Helen Keller
Dr. Blaisdell’s rats expose the fundamentals of this malady. The toxic combination of engineered food leading to endemic apathy is causing a sickness infecting Americans. Apathy. If not; despair.
America’s diet is factually the worst in the industrialized world. GMO ingredients are in eighty-five percent of all processed foods, not that this processed food is of acceptable quality. In December 2013, Professor Irina Ermakova, vice president of Russia’s National Association for Genetic Safety, called for a 10-year ban on GMO foods. Ermakova conducted GMO rat-feeding tests that showed alarming results, including extreme mortality rates. “It is necessary to ban GMO, to impose a moratorium for 10 years. It has been proved that not only in Russia, but also in many other countries in the world, GMO is dangerous.’ he concluded. In 2015 Russia past new laws banning all American GMO products. China, France and the United Kingdom have similar bans.
Illustrating Dr. Blaisdell’s study, while choosing willful ignorance, American voters have defeated GMO labeling laws in state referendums in California and Oregon. This means Americans have actually voted not to know that food-borne poison is contained in what they choose to eat. Really. But taking no chances with future elections, however, this week a US Senate committee announced it is preparing legislation seeking to prohibit states from attempting to pass their own mandatory state labeling laws via the public’s constitutional right to vote in their own interests. Labeled the “Dark Act” this is a government reaction to the few successful state initiatives requiring GMO labeling, such as Vermont, New Hampshire and Connecticutt.
As reported by William Engdahl, in a study on the toxicity of GMO plants associated with the plant killer, “ Round Up”, Anthony Samsel and Stephanie Seneff , have found additional confirmations. Their review concluded, in regard to glyphosate, the main active component of Roundup herbicide, that, “Residues (of glyphosate) are found in the main foods of the Western diet.”
Samsel and Seneff continue…
“[M]any of the health problems that appear to be associated with a Western diet could be …attributed to glyphosate. These include digestive issues, obesity [emphasis added], autism, Alzheimer’s disease, depression, Parkinson’s disease, liver diseases and cancer, among others. We believe that glyphosate may be the most significant environmental toxin.”
Researcher, Tim Spector, a professor of genetic epidemiology at King’s College London, bolsters the connection between junk food and apathy. Enlisting the help of his son Tom, a genetics student at the University of Aberystwyth in Wales, for a little over a week, Tom ate nothing but Mc Donald’s Big Macs, chicken nuggets, fries, and Coke. He reported that he, ” felt good for three days, then slowly went downhill, became more lethargic, and by a week my friends thought I had gone a strange gray color. The last few days were a real struggle. I felt really unwell.” Cornell University testing revealed that Tom’s gut microbes were “devastated.” He had lost about 1,400 types (or 40%) of his bacteria species, which is a red flag indicator for health issues such as obesity and diabetes.
In one week.
In Australia, further study from researchers at Deakin University and the Australian National University has shown that junk food does indeed physiologically affect the brain’s growth and development leading to poor mental health. Their findings concluded that a part in the brain – the hippocampus – has been shown to be smaller in those who consume junk food. The hippocampus is responsible for learning, memory and mental health. Researchers used MRI scanning to measure the size of the hippocampi in Australian adults between the ages of 60 and 64. Diet and other factors which could affect the hippocampus were measured and taken into account as well.
The results, published in BMC Medicine, revealed that seniors who had consumed junk food are more likely to have smaller left hippocampi. On the other hand, seniors who consume more nutrient-rich foods have larger left hippocampi. Associate Professor Felice Jacka concluded, “ Recent research has established that diet and nutrition are related to the risk for depression, anxiety and dementia; however, until now it was not clear how diet might exert an influence on mental health and cognition.”
Thanks to American inspired global franchising, people throughout the world are also getting fatter on the same brand-names of poison as their American counterparts. The World Health Organization refers to the epidemic as “globesity.” Yet nowhere is the trend as pronounced as it is in the United States, where per-capita calorie consumption of the worst food on the planet rose from 2,109 calories a day in 1970 to 2,568 calories in 2010, according to the Department of Agriculture. The average man today weighs thirty pounds more than in 1960 which equals; seventy-eight million people considered obese in 2012.
Americans habitually eat a lot of junk food. School children and their developing minds are affected from birth. Economically bankrupt America has created families where both Mom and Dad, by necessity are working, with the kids in daycare and the home-cooked family meal a relic of the American Dream long gone. Corporate America preys on this with a replacement of cheap, fast and processed food offerings substituted as breakfast, lunch and/or dinner. Plus snacks. The ongoing degradation of the American mind it seems, applied to Dr. Blaisdell’s laboratory rats and the UK, Russian and Australian studies, shows that growing American mental apathy is directly proportional to their extraordinarily high consumption of a very poor quality diet.
Result: a failing American mind. Combined with an ever-failing educational system, this produces a population perfectly ripened for ongoing authoritarian control.
There is, as shown globally this past weekend, a far worse result of American apathy.
It is only one indictment that Americans to have willfully allowed themselves and their nation to go to the gallows of history without a whimper. So be it. So, suffers the fool.
But in allowing an ever-corrosive America to brain-wash their souls, these same apathetic Americans also allow their government to rob, via America’s historic military might, the livelihood and futures of the remaining external and innocent world.
When considered carefully, apathy, American apathy, is a serious crime. A crime against world humanity. The checks and balances by humans on Empire are permissively missing in empirical America. Americans are thus complicit in the further daily destruction of the remaining world they wish to know little about. When the dust of the oncoming rampage of history has settled over the folly of this American empire, guilt for its accumulated horrors will sit squarely on the American people’s heads, as much as the shoulders of their obviously treasonous politicians.
In tests the laboratory rat proves to be stronger of will than its Americanized human counterpart. Like the protesters in France, South Korea, Poland, Ukraine, Iran and Ireland just mere hours ago, humans who presumably do not live on an obligatory junk food diet, the rat of pure mind and conscience continues, despite its confines, to desire its freedom. And…he will bite.
Ultimately, under the bright laboratory lights while seemingly trapped in a maze of oppression, the lab rat will do what Americans can do no longer. The rat, growing ever more desperate, will find a way to escape.
Summoning both will and courage, the rat draws the strength of will to rise-up on his hind legs, peering out over the top of the wall of the maze. His indomitable desire for freedom thus reveals the obvious: the way out.
Americans have no such remaining instinct.
About the Author:
Due to a growing obligation to help create positive change, Brett Redmayne-Titley began reporting on-scene in an effort to provide better quality reporting from current events of geo-political, environmental and moral importance. A life-long activist, political commentator and world citizen, he has published over one hundred in-depth articles, many of which have been re-published and translated internationally. He can be reached at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Image: Salim Fadhley/Flickr