This week, the FDA decides whether to allow genetically-modified (GM) salmon in our food supply. A biotech company engineered salmon genes to create a version of the fish that grows twice as fast. This will help the world fight overfishing and starvation. Sounds great to me!
But “natural” foods activists like Ben & Jerry’s CEO Josten Solheim are horrified. “Today it's a fish we are talking about, but very soon it will be a genetically engineered pig, a chicken, even God forbid, our beloved cows,” he said. The activists believe so-called “Frankenfish” are bad for the ecosystem because they are unnatural. They may somehow get into the wild and contaminate the genetically pure breeds.
However, much of what we consider “natural” and “pure” isn’t. Do these people think a French poodle is “natural”? All of the foods and animals we eat are unnatural because of thousands of years of primitive genetic engineering -- selective breeding. While the salmon would be the first government-approved GM animal, America already grows GM corn and soy without any serious problems.
Of course, the granola crowd is convinced that modern science is dangerous. The Alliance for Natural Health warned the FDA, "this recklessly and needlessly endangers human health." Those concerns are simply unfounded, says Reason Magazine’s Katherine Mangu-Ward. The world should embrace Frankenfish:
Instead of endangering the ecosystem, salmon 2.0 will protect it. Irresponsible human behavior caused overfishing and shortages, but clever human invention has discovered a way to fix these problems. As we learned to do in kindergarten, we're cleaning up our own mess. Don't worry, just dig in and feel good about your healthy dinner and your environmental impact.
This Week's Show -- July 10, 2014
CENSORSHIP AT CBS: Investigative reporter Sharyl Attkisson has a similar story. She explains why she left CBS after it became "harder and harder to get stories on television" that criticized this government and "any powers that be."
IS STOSSEL BIASED?: Years ago, journalist Howard Kurtz criticized me for not being objective. I said it's impossible for any journalist to be completely objective. Now that Howard Kurtz is on Fox, we debate again.
THE OBJECTIVITY MYTH: Andrew Kirell of Mediaite.com says, "every journalist has a point of view and they don't just magically check it the minute they walk in the newsroom door."
NEW MEDIA: Reason TV's Remy Munasifi uses music videos and parodies to complain about things like politicians' spending. One of his latest parodies highlights the scandal surrounding the VA hospitals. Munasifi discusses his videos, which have gone viral on YouTube.
RETRO REPORT: It's great there's a new media organization called Retro Report, which reveals media hype of the past ("crack babies," America's landfill "crisis," the "superpredator," etc.) and corrects stories everyone in the media got wrong. I discuss the new show with its executive producer, Kyra Darnton.
REAL OR FAKE?: Sometimes people in the media say things that are so bizarre, you'd think they were made up. Kennedy of The Independents quizzes FoxBusiness.com's Kate Rogers, Fox Business host Charles Payne and me to see if any of us can tell which quotes are real, and which were made up by my staff.
MY TAKE: I used to report on lots of scares. CBS even ran an ad for me where someone called me a "guardian angel."
That's bunk. The only guardian angel is a free and open society. That's what allows innovation, gives people longer lives, and lifts billions out of poverty. But these gradual improvements aren't newsworthy. Scares and disaster make the news.
News is broken not just because we're biased but because most good and important news happens slowly.
9PM ET on Fox Business Network