2016’s Top Presidential Science, Engineering, Tech, Health & Environmental Questions – Question 12


These are the responses of the 2016 Presidential candidates to the fourth of the twenty questions posed to them earlier.

I posted the responses to Question #1 at (concerning innovation) at “2016’s Top Presidential Science, Engineering, Tech, Health & Environmental Questions – Question 1”.

The responses to Question #2 (concerning research) are at  “2016’s Top Presidential Science, Engineering, Tech, Health & Environmental Questions – Question 2″.

The responses to Question #3 (concerning climate change) are at  “2016’s Top Presidential Science, Engineering, Tech, Health & Environmental Questions – Question 3″.

The responses to Question #4 (concerning biodiversity) are at  “2016’s Top Presidential Science, Engineering, Tech, Health & Environmental Questions – Question 4″.

The responses to Question #5 (concerning the Internet) are at  “2016’s Top Presidential Science, Engineering, Tech, Health & Environmental Questions – Question 5″.

The responses to Question #6 (concerning mental health) are at  “2016’s Top Presidential Science, Engineering, Tech, Health & Environmental Questions – Question 6″.

The responses to Question #7 (concerning energy) are at  “2016’s Top Presidential Science, Engineering, Tech, Health & Environmental Questions – Question 7″.

The responses to Question #8 (concerning science and mathematics education) are at  “2016’s Top Presidential Science, Engineering, Tech, Health & Environmental Questions – Question 8″.

The responses to Question #9 (concerning public health) are at  “2016’s Top Presidential Science, Engineering, Tech, Health & Environmental Questions – Question 9″.

The responses to Question #10 (concerning water) are at  “2016’s Top Presidential Science, Engineering, Tech, Health & Environmental Questions – Question 10″.

The responses to Question #11 (concerning nuclear energy) are at  “2016’s Top Presidential Science, Engineering, Tech, Health & Environmental Questions – Question 11″.

  • Food

Agriculture involves a complex balance of land and energy use, worker health and safety, water use and quality, and access to healthy and affordable food, all of which have inputs of objective knowledge from science. How would you manage the US agricultural enterprise to our highest benefit in the most sustainable way?

Hillary Clinton (D)

America’s rural communities lie at the heart of what makes this country great. The affordability of our food, the independence and sophistication of our energy supply, and the strength of our small communities all depend on a vibrant rural America.

As president, my administration will do more to support family farms by doubling funding for the Beginning Farmer and Rancher Development program; building strong and sustainable local food systems; and providing a focused safety net by continuing to make progress in targeting federal resources in commodity payment, crop insurance, and disaster assistance programs to support family operations.

And we will spur investment to help power the rural economy, including by expanding access to equity capital for rural businesses by increasing the number of Rural Business Investment Companies, which make equity investments in small rural businesses—driving growth and creating jobs in rural areas, and supporting investments in clean energy.

We must also acknowledge the other issues facing our rural communities. We need to expand health care access to all areas of our country, which includes broadening telemedicine. As president, I will explore ways in which we can expand tele-health reimbursement under Medicare and other programs, including federally qualified health centers and rural health clinics.

Donald Trump (R)

The implication of your question is that there should be central control of American agriculture by the federal government. That is totally inappropriate. The agriculture industry should be free to seek its best solutions through the market system. That said, the production of food is a national security issue and should receive the attention of the federal government when it comes to providing security for our farmers and ranchers against losses to nature.

Jill Stein (G)

We need a food system that is healthy and sustainable. To this end, we will:

  • Invest in clean air, water, food and soil for everyone.
  • Ban neonicotinoids and other pesticides that threaten the survival of bees, butterflies, and other pollinators.
  • Label GMOs, and put a moratorium on GMOs and pesticides until they are proven safe.
  • Support organic and regenerative agriculture, permaculture, and sustainable forestry.
  • Protect the rights of future generations. Adopt the Precautionary Principle. When an activity poses threats of harm to human health or the environment, in the absence of objective scientific consensus that it is safe, precautionary measures should be taken. The proponent of an activity, rather than the public, should bear the burden of proof.
  • Redirect the Dept. of Agriculture to meet the needs of small farmers to realize these goals.

My thoughts

First, Trump’s answer would be considered ridiculous where it not for the fact he has made comments suggesting the FDA be eliminated.  Given the track record of many companies (and yes, this is my opinion), we need to make sure that the production of food in this country is safe and that the workers who produce the food are also protected.  And just exactly how will Trump’s government protect our farmers from losses to nature?

While I am also in agreement with Clinton’s answer, I don’t think she really answer the question.  And unless, as in other questions, she modifies the priorities of the present budget, she will not have the funds for her projects.

Personally, I happen to like Stein’s answer, though I believe that Department of Agriculture is supposed to meet the needs of small farmers, though I wonder where she would find the small farmers in today’s environment that favors the large corporate farm.

In the end, producing food is, like access to drinkable water, a major component of society.  I think we see large, industrial size farms as the way to achieve this but this approach leads to other problems.  One possible solution is the restoration of the small family-based farm that feeds local populations.

Our reliance of fertilizers and artificial systems for the production of food is probably leading to the depletion of natural resources as well.  Neither Clinton nor Trump addressed this issue.

This are no simple solutions to this problem.

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9 thoughts on “2016’s Top Presidential Science, Engineering, Tech, Health & Environmental Questions – Question 12

  1. Pingback: 2016’s Top Presidential Science, Engineering, Tech, Health & Environmental Questions – Question 13 | Thoughts From The Heart On The Left

  2. Pingback: 2016’s Top Presidential Science, Engineering, Tech, Health & Environmental Questions – Question 14 | Thoughts From The Heart On The Left

  3. Pingback: 2016’s Top Presidential Science, Engineering, Tech, Health & Environmental Questions – Question 15 | Thoughts From The Heart On The Left

  4. Pingback: 2016’s Top Presidential Science, Engineering, Tech, Health & Environmental Questions – Question 16 | Thoughts From The Heart On The Left

  5. Pingback: 2016’s Top Presidential Science, Engineering, Tech, Health & Environmental Questions – Question 17 | Thoughts From The Heart On The Left

  6. Pingback: 2016’s Top Presidential Science, Engineering, Tech, Health & Environmental Questions – Question 18 | Thoughts From The Heart On The Left

  7. Pingback: 2016’s Top Presidential Science, Engineering, Tech, Health & Environmental Questions – Question 19 | Thoughts From The Heart On The Left

  8. Pingback: 2016’s Top Presidential Science, Engineering, Tech, Health & Environmental Questions – Question 20 | Thoughts From The Heart On The Left

  9. Pingback: Mr. Trump’s Answers to Science, Engineering, Tech, Health & Environmental Questions | Thoughts From The Heart On The Left

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