Viral Voronoi, TikTok, Memetics, Corntastic, Cornfluencer, Merchandising, Recess Therapy, Schmoyoho, King Corn, GMO Corn, Monocropping, NASA, Harmful Algae Bloom (HAB), Child Exploitation

A Voronoi pattern provides clues to nature’s tendency to favor efficiency: the nearest neighbor, shortest path, and tightest fit. Each cell in a Voronoi pattern has a seed point. Everything inside a cell is closer to it than to any other seed. The lines between cells are always halfway between neighboring seeds. Other examples of Voronoi patterns are the skin of a giraffe, corn on the cob, honeycombs, foam bubbles, the cells in a leaf, and a head of garlic.

Corn is having a moment — and it’s all thanks to a 7-year old boy named Tariq.

ICYMI, the “It’s Corn” meme all started after an adorable kid named Tariq gave an enthusiastic interview about corn in Recess Therapy’s Aug. 4 video, titled “The CEO of Corn.” The cute YouTube channel is all about interviewing children to find some inspiring life advice, and Tariq’s love of corn wound up inspiring everyone to reflect on just how tasty a cob of corn can be. The viral moment truly exploded a couple weeks later when TikTok musician @schmoyoho remixed Tariq’s ode to corn into a super-catchy song in an Aug. 18 video. Almost immediately, the corn song became TikTok’s new favorite sound, and the rest of the internet was captivated as well.

It was really Tariq’s verbose explanations of what makes corn so perfect that made him such a star. In the viral clip, he’s chowin’ down on a corn on the cob while answering questions about the vegetable. When asked to describe corn, Tariq calls it “a big lump with knobs, it has the juice.” He continued, “I can’t imagine a more beautiful thing,” and even shares a hilarious corn pun, saying “I hope you have a corntastic day.” After the interviewer laughed at his joke, Tariq responded: “What? It’s just a pun about corn.”

After the adorable interviews went viral, the Gregory Brothers (which are the team behind @schmoyoho TikTok account), partnered with Recess Therapy to release a nearly 3-minute song, “It’s Corn,” on Aug. 28.

Disrupts Water Supply

Monocropping also compromises our precious water supply. Fertilizers add nitrates, nitrites, and phosphates to our drinking water, as well as to other bodies of water. Nutrients leach out of our food supply and into water — which not only don’t benefit the ecology of rivers, lakes, and ponds but can harm them by creating the conditions for algal blooms that starve aquatic creatures of oxygen.

And impoverished monocropped soil is less able to absorb rainwater, leading to more flooding and more dependency on irrigation.


It’s Corn” is pretty irresistible, clever and funny, with a perfect kid for the part. No wonder it went viral. I heard it 3 times looking at the links and then later today— it just popped out while I was stacking firewood: [singing] “It’s corn!..big lump with knobs… looks like my woodpile, corn on the cobs…” yeah, that happened…

And otherwise, I’ve been very judicious about eating corn since reading Michael Pollan’s book “Omnivore’s Dilemma” [2006] which had a few cautionary tips about corn-fed beef incubating the toxic and deadly 0157:H7 strain of E.coli that ends up in their manure, hence the air (which is all an e.coli really needs to stay alive.) Other products from chemically ‘cracked’ corn are listed as citric acid, lactic acid, glucose, fructose, maltodextrin, ethanol, sorbitol, mannitol, xanthan gum, modified starch, dextrins, cyclodextrins, MSG, gluten and more (p86). “The starch itself,” he writes,”is capable of being modified into spherical, crystalline, or highly branched molecules, each suitable for a different use: adhesives, coatings, sizings, and plastics for industry; stabilizers, thickeners, gels, and ‘viscosity control agents’ for food.” (p89) Pollan also mentions irradiating freshly slaughtered beef as the sanitary measure (v. other methods of cleaning the meat) and the fact of general illness among corn-fed animals prior to slaughter, such as “feedlot polio” (p78).

Decades ago, a very old guy told me about his life during Prohibition growing up on the family farm. In his case, and among neighbors, no Feds ever came to impound the stills but it was common and necessary for farmers to keep making their own truck and tractor fuel —for them, fuel was why they grew corn.

“Corn ethanol is ethanol produced from corn biomass and is the main source of ethanol fuel in the United States, mandated to be blended with gasoline in the Renewable Fuel Standard. Corn ethanol is produced by ethanol fermentation and distillation. It is debatable whether the production and use of corn ethanol results in lower greenhouse gas emissions than gasoline.[1][2] Approximately 25% of U.S. corn croplands are used for ethanol production…[amended to this:] In the United States, 40% of the acreage designated for corn grain is used for corn ethanol production, of which 25% was converted to ethanol after accounting for co-products…” Corn ethanol - Wikipedia

Long-chain fatty acids (from lard and corn) makes fat rats (intramuscularly), like a big lump with knobs.
Long-Chain Fatty Acids and Inflammatory Markers Coaccumulate in the Skeletal Muscle of Sarcopenic Old Rats - PMC


Corn culture is central to the conditional cash transfer research I did on poor Mexican children. I think the storyline is being set up for bioprospecting of indigenous varieties as an ESG impact market. Also there will be a push to transition away from nitrogen fertilizer to syn-bio inoculants that will be pervasive in the soil and hydrological cycles.

John Trudell says we must remember who we are as human beings, remember our power. The knowledge of human interconnectedness with the universe has been suppressed since the conquest of the New World. The Maya, people of the corn, belong to the land and it to them. "Glorious varieties of zea mays maintained for centuries to sustain the people, not as a commodity crop degraded as biofuel or food additive, but as a sacred ritual of nourishment exchanged between humans and the soil of the Milpas and the gods.

It is important to know that IFPR, the group doing the evaluation, is a program of CGIAR, Consultative Group for International Agricultural Research, itself a Research Center of CIMMYT, The International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center. CIMMYT had been set up under the auspices of the Mexican Government with Rockefeller Foundation in the 1940s to launch R&D around the Green Revolution, industrialization of Mexican agriculture. In 1999, during the first years of Progresa, Zedillo cut the national tortilla subsidy forcing many more people to rely on the conditional cash transfers. For decades the government had used the subsidy to support small-scale corn production while keeping the staple food affordable for those in need.

Starting in the early 1990s, however, the government begin shifting to purchases of harina flour instead of traditional masa due to lobbying efforts by the grain company Gruma Maseca that cornered the market with its industrial corn product. The result was the opening of markets to US corn via Gruma investor Archer Daniels Midland, erosion of traditional foodways, higher costs, and reduced quality of tortillas across Mexico. Today the corn wars continue. Over the summer Mexico announced its opposition to GMO corn and glyphosate, but then backed off saying the government would only continue to prohibit planting of GMO corn in the country. It would not ban imports of US grown corn, of which 90% is GMO, into Mexico for animal feed. Despite a ban on GMO corn in southern Mexico put in place in 1998, transgenic corn was discovered growing in Oaxaca in 2001."

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Alison, your excellent piece just gave me insight into the possible research uses of the Progresa program as it corresponds to a small ‘medical’ study on rural Mexican agricultural workers and their newborns. In this very small study of less than 30 pregnant women, the object of the research was to find women who never handled tobacco to determine if the Tobacco Mosaic Virus was present in the gut of their newborns who were exclusively breastfed—answer, yes— but what makes it relate to Progresa, and the ‘global outlet’ of data, is the Europeans performing the study and the likelihood of finding the perfect target subjects. This small study has a claim of uniqueness in medical research but I see it as evidence-gathering of a longstanding research question; just not sure what question that is exactly. If the women were corn workers, the question could be hiding behind a tobacco-seeming objective. I don’t mean to sound obscure but here’s where I haven’t yet posted to this forum on virus issues. One of your first threads on the forum concerned CORN and TOBACCO, and I was just getting a toe in to that thread. The value of that very small study, as I see it, supports the idea of “plant viruses” (or their known genetic sequences) as component parts of our own chromosomes, which is currently proving.

As for Archer Daniels Midland, back in 1939 the company lent its New York Harbor dock space to the holding-storage of thousands of tons of processed uranium intended for the not-yet-named Manhattan Project (MED). After 2 and a half years on the open dock, approximately 1200 tons was still there, ready for government purchase. From Rumor to Reality: Staten Island’s Radioactive History | Waterfront Alliance It’s believed that as much as 4000 tons of material was originally shipped to ADM’s Staten Island warehouses. Intriguing, possibly integral, to the fate of ADM uranium, is the involvement of mobsters Lansky and Luciano in a contract with the US Navy to guard the New York City waterfront.

….a lot of hot history on cold cases out there…

ADM comes up again in the scandals of Watergate, specific to the laundered funding of Nixon’s CREEP (re-election fund) for pay-offs. Kenneth Dahlberg, Who Didn't Lie About Watergate, Has Died | WYSO

Dwayne O. Andreas, Who Turned Archer Daniels Midland Into Food Giant, Dies at 98

Nov. 16, 2016 – “Dwayne O. Andreas, an executive whose mastery of the global grain trade and the levers of political power turned the Archer Daniels Midland Company into a farm products giant and pushed it to the front ranks of American industry, died on Wednesday in Decatur, Ill. He was 98. The company confirmed his death.

“No farm industrialist of the 20th century navigated the world’s seats of power as easily as Mr. Andreas. He was as familiar to heads of state in Washington, Moscow and London as almost any top American diplomat. Slim and slight as a jockey, he achieved outsize stature in the White House, in Congress and among the agencies and councils of influence that are critical to an industry so mightily swayed by government authority. Sometimes he and his company ran afoul of those authorities. One federal investigation led to a $100 million fine in 1996 for fixing prices, a record penalty in a criminal antitrust case at the time.

“But more often he courted and was courted by some of the world’s most powerful political figures. During the nearly 30 years he controlled the company, he and A.D.M. were among the most generous financiers of congressional and presidential campaigns, Democratic and Republican alike. At the same time, the company, based in Decatur, was helping to feed nearly every American and billions more people around the world. Archer Daniels Midland’s high-fructose corn syrup sweetened soft drinks. Its soybeans and feed additives increased milk production and fattened hogs, cattle and chickens. It manufactured cocoa and cocoa butter for chocolates and cakes. Its corn ethanol fueled vehicles.

“The scale of the global enterprise that Mr. Andreas built had few equals. In 1970, when he was named chairman and chief executive, Archer Daniels Midland’s soybean exports totaled $1.5 billion. By 1999, when he retired as chairman, the figure was $7 billion, and the company was the biggest processor in the industry.

“The company, founded in 1902 by George A. Archer and John W. Daniels as a linseed-crushing business (it acquired the Midland Linseed Products Company in 1923), grew almost tenfold under Mr. Andreas’s watch. In 1999, it employed more than 23,000 people and operated in 50 countries. Today, A.D.M. controls much of the world’s cocoa, wheat, corn, soybean and oil seed production. “The food business is far and away the most important business in the world,” Mr. Andreas once said. “Everything else is a luxury.” ….

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Thanks for this @jenlake. Surely digital ID tied to soulbound token tagged interventions will enable all sorts of sorting for future experimental purposes.

I do feel that desecration of sacred corn will have terrible repercussions.

Not totally sure what to make of Prechtel, but this book raised a lot of interesting ideas about keeping heirloom seeds, corn in particular, alive.

Don’t let me put you off your book. I have full enthusiasm for heirloom seeds but ”People as Plants” strikes a different chord with me. And there seems to be a cautionary tale in most of those corntastic anthropologist-to-shaman transformations:

“Let me first outline my relationship with Martin. He and I had a close collaboration for five or six years. The most enduring aspect of that relationship is in the realm of publications, [deleted]. It was right around the time of that publication that Martin and I went our separate ways. The primary reason for that split was Martin’s very bitter divorce from his Mayan wife Dolores, who remains a close friend of mine, and his financially driven decision to move in an increasingly New Age direction. As a result,
he and I have not communicated directly for some ten years. And, all of that said, Martin’s autobiographical accounts (the Talking Jaguar series) is a mix of fact and fiction. He did go to Santiago Atitlan. He did study under a shaman of renown named Nicolas Chiviliu. He did hold a position of some importance in the local civil-religious hierarchy. However, these facts are presented in inaccurate ways. He lived in Atitlan for three years, not the twelve to fifteen that he claims. He was not guided to the town in any direct sort of way by a mystical series of dreams. In fact, prior to going to Atitlan, he was in Guatemala long enough to marry, father a son, divorce, establish a career as a latino/rock musician, record five albums, etc. Moreover, he was never “Chief of the Tz’utujil tribe.” There is no such thing as a Tz’tutjil tribe and no such position as “chief.”
Frauds (Deer Tribe, Bear Tribe) in Germany ; Martin Prechtel "Bolad’s Kitchen"

“Years ago I talked to the Mayan shaman Martin Prechtel about how he perceives offerings… I began by asking him what a shaman is. He said, “Shamans are sometimes considered healers or doctors, but really they are people who deal with the tears and holes we create in the net of life, the damage that we all cause in our search for survival. In a sense, all of us—even the most untechnological, spiritual, and benign peoples—are constantly wrecking the world. The question is, how do we respond to that destruction? If we respond as we do in modern culture, by ignoring the spiritual debt that we create just by living, then that debt will come back to bite us, hard. But there are other ways to respond… Shamans deal with the problems that arise when we forget the relationship that exists between us and the other world that feeds us, or when, for whatever reason, we don’t feed the other world in return.” Martin Prechtel | The official Derrick Jensen site


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Yes - I did get a sense that something was off about it. A lot of ego baked in. Poor Dolores.