Yesterday I went to a so-called Conferencia, Los Maices Criollos
y la Contaminación Transgénica in the library of the ethnobotanical
garden here, a shameless affair with someone from the U of C Santa
Barbara presenting a supposed statistical demonstration that Ignacio
Chapela and David Quist were wrong and Ortiz-(something or other) et al
were correct. There is no significant contamination of corn in Oaxaca!!
This Doctora Daniela Soleri from Santa Barbara never mentioned a word
about the whole Novartis, Nature Magazine, tenure struggle, telling the
campesino-free audience that the question she was addressing was how
can science benefit society, as though it was merely a question of
science, a sacred disciplinary cow apart from the rest of society. I
challenged her with my lousy Spanish, but not very successfully. She
ended up asserting that no one was paying her (I had not asked her
that, but who was the patron for the apparently very large scale Ortis-
et al study, but she never answered the question), and said she was
confident there was no conspiracy. So don't worry folks, she assured
the middle-class audience. Just enjoy your tamales, tortillas and
tlayudas. Anyway, John, I tried to search for the so-called News of the
Week article in that great and neutral magazine Science
the Santa Barbara researcher had used in her powerpoint presentation,
and came upon your excellent article at
. Nit-picker that I am, I
think there's a misprint in the following quote of Ignacio's words:
"My gut reaction was that the company was trying to buy the university.
I knew all about that. In fact, I
had tried to do the same thing with
the Scripps Institute in San Diego when Novartis first decided it
needed a West Coast beachhead." That I should of course be 'it', no?
I really envy your ability to hang on to so much good, detailed,
relevant information. You're a powerhouse, John.