Loc: Waterloo, NY
Seneff: “A third trial on glyphosate & NHL is underway! This time it's a husband and a wife both of whom are coping with NHL. They used Roundup for many years to control weeds in their property. Johnson Juror # 4 does a great job of subbing for GG who is away.”
BY AOJ – AKA JOHNSON JUROR #4
The Pilliods, we learn, sprayed lots Roundup around several properties. They are non-professional household Roundup users like Edwin Hardeman, and unlike Lee Johnson, who sprayed it at his job. The Pilliods read the instructions on the label of RU, and sprayed and sprayed for decades, with no protective clothing or equipment. Alva Pilliod even continued spraying after his NHL diagnosis, and did not stop spraying until he saw an ad on TV from a law firm representing Roundup users who had NHL. Shit.
In the rodent studies we have NEW information. The story goes like this: In 1971, one Paul Wright leaves Monsanto to go work for Industrial BioTest Labs (IBT), which a short time later conducts a rodent study for Monsanto that shows no tumors. This result leads to EPA approval of RU. Two years later, IBT and Wright are exposed as frauds for falsifying the tumor data, or some such shenanigans. Monsanto took no action in the wake of the scandal.
Mighty Mouse and the Magic Tumor. This one never, ever gets old folks! In case you don’t know the story: In 1983 Knezovich and Hogan find renal tumors in mice leading the EPA to classify RU as Class C oncogen. Monsanto sits down with EPA to tidy up the mess. “Short of new study, or finding tumor in control mouse, how can we get this thing off Cat C?” Enter the Magic Doctor who is hired to review the study—he re-cuts the slides, and finds the Magic Tumor in the World’s Most Famous control Mouse. So, the EPA wants the study repeated and that never, ever, happens.
Brent now gets into further detail about the Pilliod’s cancers. It is not a pleasant story, but at least they are alive. There was a cost for that, however, as Brent describes how their post cancer treatment lives are much different, all because of weeds they would have been happy to let thrive had they known. He then goes through the differential etiology for Alberta and Alva, listing off the other potential risk factors for each: family history, immunosuppression, certain viruses, smoking, Hashimoto’s disease, and RU exposure. Brent crosses them all off except the RU exposure, of course. He points out that it is highly unlikely that two genetically unrelated people in the same household would get NHL. The common denominator must be their RU exposure.
Now Tarek introduces a very interesting strategy. He says he is “not going to refute every email that the plaintiffs” are going to show and then implies that causation—did RU cause the Pilliod’s cancer?—is the key to this trial. “This is not a referendum on Monsanto.” Ah, I get it now. This is the new angle! Monsanto counsel has decided to self-bifurcate! They are playing the corporate bad behavior off of the causation, as if the corporate bad behavior is a mere distraction. Not. Very. Clever. But there it is, the new angle.
This new self-bifurcation thing has one very big problem, which is, once the jury gets a good dose of say, Farmer, Heydens, and Reeves, the natural question is, why? If your RU product is so safe, why do you have an FTO department? Why all the discussion of which studies might look bad? Why not conduct that mouse study? Why even discuss ghostwriting? Why fear IARC, or the AHS? Why do your lawyers ask judges for bifurcation?
Make no mistake, this jury will have to sign off on the causation before they get to the punitive phase of deliberations. But this whole thing is a reverse Catch-22 with a full twist. The logic of the defense just implodes no matter which way they spin it.