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The soaring price of commodities worldwide has been a disaster for the poor, with reports coming out of Haiti that some people don’t have enough money to pay for food and are reduced to eating dirt. But these are happy times for multinational food and grain giants. Patricia Woertz, chairman and CEO of Archer Daniel Midlands (ADM), “the world leader in bio-energy,” said last month that “Volatility in commodity markets presented unprecedented opportunities. Once again, our team leveraged our financial flexibility and global asset base to capture those opportunities to deliver shareholder value.” Meanwhile, Cargill profits were 86% last quarter.
Greg Page, Cargill chairman and CEO, has said: “Prices are setting new highs and markets are extraordinarily volatile. In this environment, Cargill’s team has done an exceptional job measuring and assessing price risk, and managing the large volume of grains, oilseeds and other commodities moving through our supply chains for customers globally.”
More from Ken Silverstein:
Perspective — October 23, 2013, 8:00 am
How pro-oil Louisiana politicians have shaped American environmental policy
Postcard — October 16, 2013, 8:00 am
A trip to one of the properties at issue in Louisiana’s oil-pollution lawsuits
Estimated acres of forest Henry David Thoreau burned down in 1844 trying to cook fish he had caught for dinner:
The bombardier beetle, which can fire liquid at its enemies from its rear end at up to 300 squirts per second, was being scrutinized in the hope of building a better airplane engine.
London Fire Brigade investigators blamed a building fire in South London on a bird that carried a lit cigarette to its rooftop nest. “Smokers,” said neighborhood baker Richard Scroggs. “What can you say?”
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“American politics has often been an arena for angry minds.”