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September 5, 2000


Need Information on Nazi Charge on Transgenics


I have been asked me to do an expanded version of my posted piece on
the Nazis and organic agriculture for a high quality journal which I
have now done (see
id=agbioview&msg_num=720&start_num=725 for my original posting to
Agbioview) .

Documentation for my main thesis is no problem but more sources would
always be helpful if not for now then for the future. However, I
began my posting and my article with the claim that the proponents of
organic agriculture often liken transgenics in agriculture and
genetic modification in any form to the Nazi experiments of the 1920s
and 1930s.. In fact, I was inspired to do my piece by a posting
either on Agnet or AgBioView in which a "scientist" at a hospital in
London compares genetic modification to the Nazis. Unfortunately, I
have neither saved the articles where I have seen the Nazi charge nor
have I made any notes other than mental ones.

Can anyone provide me with documentation (including online) suitable
for a scholarly journal of these comparisons of transgenics to the
Nazis by the anti-GM groups? I would be extremely grateful for any
help! Please help and thank you in advance!

Tom DeGregori

P.S. I cite as an extreme case, the PETA comparison of the annual
slaughter of chickens to he Holocaust. I saw Ingrid Newkirk of PETA
on TV the other evening defending this statement (and other PETA
nonsense) so I know it is correct but I need documentation.

See below for a further discussion on my Agbioview piece on the
Activist listserv.

Thomas R. DeGregori, Ph.D.
Professor of Economics
Department of Economics
University of Houston

Date: Thu, 17 Aug 2000 09:31:06 +0200
From: Klaus Wiegand
Subject: Re: anti-organic propaganda

hello prof. cummings,

you wrote:

Prof. DeGregori's thesis that modern organic agriculture was promoted
by Hilter's government is a bizarre distortion of history.

prof. cummings, before giving wrong informations, you should get the
facts straight about these times and invest some money in history
books. the nazi's were BIG promoters of organic agriculture. by the
year 1936 they had managed to convert an almost entire state of
germany (thueringen in then central germany) to an ALL-organic state.
thueringen then had the size of your state vermont or new jersey. and
there were written-down plans to expend that area heavily to the
occupied regions in the east (slovenia, the whole "protectorates")
and in some regions like silesia and bohemia and maehren. that sums
up to about 1/5 of the entire reich. you also seem to forget, that
himmler and goering were university-educated AGRICULTURAL scientists
(with doctoral degrees in that profession), who (beside almost every
field marshall, admiral, general and all the industrial supporters)
had HUGE farms in the eastern regions. i read their plans on changing
germany's agriculture even in school books and there is no doubt:
their plans were to convert the largest part of german's agriculture
to organic agriculture, which they praised in highest tones...
besides: the allies for a while planned the same after the war: the
morgenthau plan !

alfred rosenburg, alfred leitgen (private secretary of hess), walther
darre (minister of agriculture), otto ohlendorf (sd), alfred baeumler
(head of department of inner security) and Walter Schoenichen: all in
very high positions and all strong supporters of organic agriculture

writing in 1942, walther schoenichen explained the national socialist
party's reasoning: "For centuries, we have been bombarded with the
idea that it is progress to defend the rights of cultivated lands,
but now we are saying that it is progress to demand the rights of the
wild nature next to these lands. And not only the rights of the
wooded lands, but also of the sand dunes, swamps, garigues, reefs,
and glaciers."

the same law that established the reserves also placed new limits on
private property rights in an effort to ensure sounder environmental
practices throughout the country. this approach built on the nazi
slogan "The Common Good Takes Precedence over the Individual Good"
and on the nazi vision of a supportive and cooperative "People's
Community." hitler, a long time vegetarian, also called for
legislation to protect animal rights, arguing that "in the new Reich
cruelty toward animals should no longer exist." on november 24, 1933,
the nazis adopted the tierschutzgestz law, and its provisions were
more far reaching than any other anti-cruelty legislation that had
been passed elsewhere in europe and the united states.

one can also hear the strange echo of walther darre's paranoia about
cultural contamination in ed abbey's advocacy of militarizing the
u.s./mexico border to stop illegal immigration. abbey, a gifted
wilderness advocate, argued that this measure was needed to protect
"our resources" against the swelling hordes of central american
refugees, people he claimed were "morally-culturally-generically"
inferior to the racial stock of this country's european american
majority. the poignancy of this comparison is heightened by the
realization that darre and abbey also share an anti-capitalist,
anti-industrial politics (although they came only to power by strong
financial aid from them) .

you see: the whole thing was a strange, dangerous and very difficult
to analyse brew of truths, half-truths, lies, theosophies, pagan
rites, inner circles, occultism, "blood and soil"-propaganda and the
commmon peoples's desire for nature and proudness. explaining it more
in debth would need several books and is up to historians. a short
summary might sound like this: the nazis liked organic agriculture as
an ideology, but they disliked the people (the anthroposophs) behind.

rudolf hess was the highest protector of the waldorf schools, which
were closed as a consequence and punishment, when he fled to england.
years before he had ordered the continuation of the work of
biologic-dynamical farmers in the "reich". himmler was highly
supportive and - cruel coincidence - initiated a biologic-dynamical
farm - IN AUSCHWITZ!! it was also himmler, who took over the farm of
then most famous practical biologic-dynamic farmer Erhard Bartsch
after that one got arrested in 1941.

the probably best source about steiner is marie von sievers, steiners
wife. some citations (vomiting optional, but highly recommanded)

1) "These blacks in Africa characteristerically suck in,
absorb, all light and all heat from the cosmos. And, humans being
humans, this light and this heat from the cosmos cannot pass through
the entire body. It does not flow through the entire body, but it
stops at the skin. In this way, the complexion itself becomes black.
Consequently, a black in Africa is a human who absorbs and
assimilates as much light and heat from the cosmos as possible. As he
does this, the forces of the cosmos work throughout that human.
Everywhere, he absorbs light and heat, really everywhere. He
assimilates them within himself. There really must be something which
helps him in this assimilation. That something is mainly the
cerebellum. This is why a Negro has an especially well developed
cerebellum. This is linked to the spinal marrow; and they can
assimilate all light and heat which a human contains. As a
consequence, especially the aspects which pertain to the body and to
metabolism are strongly developed in a Negro. He has a strong sexual
urge -as people call it-, strong instincts. And as, with him, all
which comes from the sun -light and heat- really is at the skin's
surface, all of his metabolism works as if the sun itself is boiling
in his inside. This causes his passions. Within a Negro, cooking is
going on all the time; and the cerebellum kindles the fire. (...) And
we, Europeans, we poor Europeans, we have the thinking life, which
resides in the head. (...) Therefore, Europe has always been the
starting point of everything which develops the human entity in such
a way that at the same time a relationship with the outside world
arises. (...)"

taken from Rudolf-Steiner-Gesamtausgabe, Bd. 349, "Vom Leben des
Menschen und der Erde":

2) "When Negroes go to the west, they cannot absorb as much light
and heat any more as they were used to in their Africa. (...) That is
why they turn copper red, they become Indians. That is because they
are forced to reflect a part of the light and heat.
They turn shiny copper red. They cannot keep up this copper red
shining. That is why the Indians die out in the West, they die
because of their own nature which does not get enough light and heat,
they die because of the earthly factor.(...)"

"Really, it is the whites who develop the human factor within
themselves. Therefore they have to rely on themselves. When whites do
emigrate, they partly take on the characteristics of other areas, but
they die more as individuals than as a race. The white race is the
race of the future, the race that is working creatively with the

quote from a speech of steiner he made to workers who were building
the Goetheanum in Dornach, March 3, 1923.

3) "Indians died because of their own nature, women gave birth to
mulatto children because they read 'Negro novels', French is a
language based on lies".

4) "During the Atlantean period of development, the skeleton had
to remain flexible for a certain time, so it could be modified.
Certain population groups, however, lagged behind, their skeleton
became solid too early. (....) and lagged behind as a degenerate
human race.

They could not adapt to the situation in the post-Atlantean period;
the last relics are the American Indians. They were degenerated.

The Indian nation did not become extinct just by chance, because the
Europeans wanted so, but because that nation had to acquire the
forces, which led to extinction."

5) "Das Judentum als solches hat sich aber l=E4ngst ausgelebt, hat
keine Berechtigung innerhalb des modernen V=F6lkerlebens, und dass es
sich dennoch erhalten hat, ist ein Fehler der Weltgeschichte, dessen
Folgen nicht ausbleiben konnten."

("Really, Jewry as such has been outliving itself since a long time,
it does not have the right to exist in the modern life of nations,
and that it has survived nevertheless, is a mistake by world history,
of which the consequences were bound to come.")

cited in: : Uit de Vrije School geklapt. Over antroposofie en
racisme; een stellingname. Sittard: Baalprodukties, 1996 ISBN
90-802315-5-X. Translation by Benine Bloemen and Herman de
Tollenaere, from the Dutch original

MUCH more ugly literature available on demand. but having read these
citations, do you really wonder, why the nazis favored "organic
agriculture according to steiner"?? they were not interested in the
(without doubt useful) farming practices themself, but much more in
the queer anthroposophic philosophy behind !!!

>The organic chemical pesticides were not even invented during the
>era of the Nazi government.

partly wrong.! chemical pesticide production in germany began shortly
after the WW I and organical pesticides were very well in use in the
20ies and 30ies. most of them used for storage protection, the
largest producer is well known: search for a company named DETIA.
beside prussic acid some phosphoresters were already in use before
the war.

the most advanced one was oxydemethon-methyl, though that one was not
introduced before 1944. common name: E 605 and beside ddt it became
the most used insecticide after WWII and is still produced today.
but: DDT and HCH production started even in 1940.

before me i have the ORIGINAL leaflet of the "biologische
bundesanstalt fuer land- und forstwirtschaft", public flyer no. 128,
march 1941 - "protection against corn weevils".

>chemicals used: HCN for gassing, followed by a list of 6 synthetic
>organical pesticides just against >corn weevils (plus some other
>anorganic pesticides against other insects).

yes, the mostly used insecticides were pyrethrum, pryethrin,
nicotine, rotenone, cryolite, borax, formalin, naphtaline and derris
followed by combinations of flour /chlor and arsenics. the first four
certainly are organic chemical pesticides, though i assume, that by
organic chemical pesticides you mean the "synthetical" ones.

>The chemical fertilizers and the rules of NP and K use were not
>practiced to any major extent until >after the second world war.

and again wrong. in our institute's library there is one shelf with
about 3 meters of "der deutsche forschungsdienst" (mostly literature
SUMMARIES, and of these 3 meters about 10% dealing with nothing but
experiments and recommandations for synthetic fertilizers. though
with a lot of articles with nazi race-propaganda, the france military
commission expressively allowed our institute to keep them, because
they also are full of useful and real scientific research (i was told
we got them back one year after confiscation with minor overpaintings)

nitrophoska was already used by 150.000 tons per year in the
end-thirties !!! you find thousands of "scientific" research papers
like "calcium nitrate, it's influence on mineral content of the plant
and the implications on the health of our race". you even can find a
paper from the demeter-bund researching the question, whether
organically or with synthetic fertilizer grown carrots are healthier
for children's growth (published in 1938 - and due to the threat of
getting forbidden - with a light racial undertone. the analyse was
done on several hundred of children from berlin. don't expect any
advancement in the results after 60 more years of research on that
topic). during the war there were deep complaints from farmer about
the end of shipments of phosphorous fertilizers from africa and of
chile salpeter from south america.

usage of fertilizer in "deutsches reich" and after-war western
germany (kg per ha and year)

by synthetic by organic
fertilizers fertilizers

N P2O5 K20 N P2O5 K2O

1925-1927 13 14 23 28 14 40
1935-1938 20 26 38 32 16 45
1950/51 26 30 47 32 16 45
1960/61 43 47 70 43 22 61
1980/81 127 69 94 71 35 102

(source: german governmental office for statistics)

the data show: roughly half synthetic and half organic fertilizer
usage in pre-war-times and the overall relations have not changed
very much nowadays. you call roughly one half "no major extend" ??

>Indeed the nitrates were far too valuable in manufacturing
>explosives to find much diversion to >agriculture.

that's certainly correct: during the war, but not before !

sometimes things are not as they look alike. another strange fact
just became the scandal no. 1 in germany (before the hidden and
untaxed secret cashier of our old chancellor helmut kohl).

the name "waldorf school" means anything to you ? if not, these are
the schools, who teach anthroposophy according to the lessons of
rudolf steiner. and what was just found out by some careful
investigating reporters of "DER SPIEGEL", our best german periodical
magazine ? in waldorf schools of today children are STILL taught of
"supremacist white races" and the "inferior black race, who is not
worth being brought in connection with our higher intelligence".
found in the book "Atlantis" written by one of steiners "brothers in
arms". the book is one of the official and obligatory teaching books
in waldorf schools and was once highly praised and recommanded by
rudolf steiner himself for school use. heaven beware us from such
schools and such a spirit. with friends like these, who needs enemies

our government acted VERY aggressively against that attitude of the
waldorf schools and forbad that book immedietaly (we have had much
too much of that shit !!). but more important: it also tells
something about the spirit of steiner himself. don't make him a
harmless and sensible person, the anthroposophs are trying to
portrait him !! his fans also prefer to not mention, that he had to
spend more than a year in jail for aggrevated larceny and he did not
get that year of jail for stealing just a package of bubble gum !
steiner was also known to be a irregular cocain user.

conclusion: it would be wise for nowadays organic farmers to keep
their distance from rudolf steiner and "friends".

on one thing you're certainly correct: the article of degregori is
highly one-sided. it might also be useful to check for his name at
the PR watch side for his associations with interest groups and


+-[Quote of the day, powered by k. wiegand]--+ | |
| SURE I believe in GOD |
| - I carved one from soapstone |
| this morning." |

Comments of Tom DeGregori:

1) It is interesting that Klaus Wiegand chose to share his thoughts
on the Nazi connection only with an activist list and not with the
members of the list where it was originally posted. 2) An implication
of the first point is that though the ideological connection may be
true, it is best if only the believers know it. 3) A further
implication on the first point, is that one can best overcome
problems of ones intellectual history by ignoring them rather than
confronting and dealing with them directly. 4) There is no difference
in the substance of my posting and Klaus Wiegand's except for a
different selection of empirical evidence. But apparently, I am wrong
because I am "anti-organic" while my critic, Prof. Cummings may be
mistaken in every empirical detail but he is a good guy who is really
right because he is pro-organic and I am not. This is quite an
insight into the "logic" of the believers. 5) I personally am not
concerned about being on a "watch" list, in fact I am rather
flattered by it. But I do find it frightening that there is such a
"watch" list for those who honestly express ideas at variance with a
body of revealed "truths." It denies a fundamental tenet of modern
inquiry concerning the fructifying power of difference and the
advancement of knowledge and understanding throught this interaction
and exchange of ideas. It assumes that ones own "truths" are so
patently self-evident that anyone who differs must be evil and acting
out of some selfish interest. This is precisely the point of
comparison that I was making between the modern movement and the
Nazis. Both assume (or assumed) that they are pure and beyond good
and evil promoting a cause (saving and protecting the purity of the
race or the planet) larger than themselves while those who differ
with them have an ulterior motive (corrupting the race or destroying
the planet in the pursuit of profit) and therefore with Orwellian
logic, aggressive acts against them are really self-defense.
Tragically, Wiegand's closing comments indicate that he may know the
little secret of the history of organic agriculture but he does not
seem to have fully learned from it. This is precisely the reason that
it has to be brought forward and openly and honestly discussed
without name calling. The purpose of such an inquiry is not to
denigrate or demonize but to clear the air. 6) In sum, I rather like
the Wiegand's empirical evidence on the Nazi connection better than
my own. My more modest evidence pales in comparison to his. I hope
that in the future that he will share his knowledge in this regard
with us. We can promise not to brand the "organic" advocates as Nazis
if, of course they will do the same to us in their anti-GM food
rhetoric. After all, need we be reminded of the old adage (or
possibly cliche) about people in glass houses not throwing stones.