Monday, September 21, 2015

Cherry Picking and "Return on Investment"

In a textbook case of cherry picking, one sentence keeps emerging in the activist trial-by-internet concerning the Monsanto donation to my science communication program.  The backstory is that my university received a donation from the company toward my outreach program, which covered the costs for me to travel and teach scientists how to talk about science. 

That was very nice of them, wonderful.  Having funds to rent a facility, travel to the location, buy coffee/doughnuts or subs for the workshop is a real help. Previously this was all funded personally buy taking monies offered to me as speaker fees and deferring them to the Talking Biotech program. 

I remain extremely grateful for their support, even after those funds have been allocated elsewhere by the university. 

I was so grateful, that I noted this in an email to the Monsanto Company.  That became a huge deal when 4600 pages of emails were seized by activists back in June. 

Out of the tens of thousands of sentences they focused on this single one, finally irrefutable proof of high collusion between a professor speaking facts and a company that makes products. 


Select graphics from Natural News, GMO News and Food Babe.com tout my kind appreciation as dangerous collusion.


I was raised in a home that emphasized gratitude and appreciation for the gestures of others.  I was raised in a home that taught me to take opportunities and maximize them, to work hard, to over-deliver.  

So when I promise the donor "a solid return on investment" that's not a evidence of a conspiracy.  That's evidence of a good upbringing. 

The company recognized my program of science education as an effective and powerful way to help train scientists how to interact better with a concerned public, and their funds enabled me to do it once a month for a year.  Ironically, I fell far short of expectations, and then lost the funds after activist uproar.

It is amazing that folks like Mike Adams and Vani Hari, along with the rest of the GMO-Truthers, see gratitude and appreciation as a negative thing.  It tells us a lot about them and their characters.

When anyone trusts me with financial support for my research or my outreach, I will do my best to maximize the return on the investment.  That is a promise.  That is a quality instilled deep in my by loving parents and grandparents, that emphasized the value of hard word and always going above and beyond for others.