« Speaking of the Garden | Main | Speaking of the Garden »

June 22, 2009

The fully vetted White House garden

More on the conspiracy behind the White House kitchen garden.

 A reader of my op-ed column in today's Baltimore Sun e-mailed me with details of how President Obama faked his birth certificate, allowing him to run for president despite the fact that he was not a native born citizen.

 "I guess growing your own Birth Certificate isn't that hard if you have knowledge of Quantum mathematics and the ability to understand photon streaming and the sensitive computer technology it takes to create a Birth Certificate without any pixel flaws which occurred in the Internet copy of Barry's. His phony document is like the poor little petunia in the onion patch," wrote Bonnie Sisson Stilwell of Concord, N.C.

 She also said the White House used the wrong mulch on the vegetable garden and I should contact Martha Stewart and find out what she uses.

This ties in nicely with another e-mail from someone at "Sludge Watch," that said that White House South Lawn was used as a toxic sludge dump, and the Obama family, and everyone else who eats from that garden, is in danger.

Please, Garden Variety readers, someone send me a pretty picture of their garden before I completely lose my perspective here.

Posted by Susan Reimer at 1:02 PM | | Comments (10)
Categories: White House Kitchen Garden


Oh, my God. Is this woman serious? Although I did not vote for our current president, the fact that this woman from NC has time to investigate elaborate conspiracy theories (or parrot them from Rush and Hannity), she must have time to tend to one heck of a garden! And how would she know what kind of mulch is being used? Apparently, she doesn't know that long time civil service employees have been gardeners there for decades.

I live in MoCo. If I have a chance, I'll take a picture of the garden the next time I'm downtown. And since I'm busy with work, elderly parents and volunteer activities, maybe this woman from NC can come up and tend my garden plot, since she has so much time on her hands

I seldom read your column. I have never blogged. However, I can't believe the stuff the naysayers hang their hats on regarding the Obamas. Now the garden is supposed to be a fake. I have a quote on my monthly calender, from whom I can't remember. But it says, "Be free of slave holding interpretations". For me as an African-American, I am intellegent, purposeful, creative, and can achieve all that God will allow. In my opinion, these naysayers about everything the Obamas do and say is likely motivated by the fact that (the Obamas) are not holding to the old slave holding interpretations that black people are dumb, ignorant, trying to get over, or whatever their minds conjure up. The Obamas are distorting these perceptions. These folks need to get over it. What ever they can do we can do and many times we can do it better. Whatever talent and gifts we have comes from God. It is not determined by the color of our skin. Plants, trees, etc. have all grown excessively big due to all the rain we have had this spring. Again, these folks need to find another purpose in life. They need to take a walk outside. They need to free themselves of slave holding interpretations, too. Would they say the same things about Laura Bush, if it were her garden? What happened to celebrating other people's successes?

Validated Facts on Obama Eligibility Story Updated and Expanded
If you read the articles at the link and review the citations at the embedded links, you will be “literate” about the facts of the “eligibility” story and will be able to inform the public objectively.
AKA Obama Fans: All together now – say OMG!!

The First Lady is being a good roll model to these children. Helping them know the importance of good nutrition. No matter what I think of the politics. That does not come into play here with the garden. If these children have learned somethings, then it is good for all of them. The nuts are out their on both sides. They always will be. Sorry that you, Susan have to deal with so many of them right now. Hope that you have a better day.
Dan and Deanna "Marketing Unscrambled"

Yes, The First Lady is being an excellent example and I hope she continues to share gardening and good eating with young America! Show kids there's more to life than videos, games and computers; not to mention a breath of fresh air. Bravo, Mrs. Obama!

Poor Susan. You get crazies like Sam Sewell coming at you left and right! Just keep in mind that most of us normal folks don't bother to write in to you to say "Yup - we agree!" But we're out there!

I don't know if people really just have too much time on their hands or what but come on people. Why can't you just accept that even if you don't like the Obama's, this garden, like most gardens is a good thing. It is teaching the children not only gardening skills but teamwork, nutrition, and more. It's about time we started focusing on what's positive instead of wasting time on such pettiness and ignorance!

Like anyone who moves into a new home, the Obama family would have had no idea that sewage sludge compost had been spread on their South Lawn.

The point is, that some of the sludge composts that have been used in promotional efforts by the wastewater industry and their spin doctors on the White House lawn have been known to be very high in heavy metals like lead.

We know that 1,500 yards ORGRO was spread on the White House Presidential Park ... it tests out as much as 240 ppm lead.

Now the sludge spin doctors are hiding their faces while the pro-organic movement steps forward to claim the First Family garden.

It is a great idea to have a garden at the White House. Even the Queen of England now has an organic garden at Buckingham Palace (her son must be proud).

But there is no such thing as a safe level of lead being ingested ... especially by children.

So gardeners everywhere need to beware of compost that calls itself 'organic' because that does not mean that it is suitable for an organic garden. It does not mean that it is free of lead.

Just like the 10 poor black families who were not told that their yards were being spread with sewage sludge compost...the First Family is living with the legacy of sludge.

Maureen Reilly
Sludge Watch

Here you go, look at the pretty flowers . . .

What else might have been in the sewage sludge compost?

Sewage sludge and composted sewage sludge can and do contain heavy metals. What is less well discussed is the level of pathogens and their genetic fragments as found in sewage sludge, hence composted sewage sludge.

Many pathogens require high-level disinfection, examples are the gut pathogens found on endoscopes. From the gut they reach the sewer. Few if any sewer plants can attain this level of disinfection (high-level). Sewer plants mainly reach low-level disinfection and that is not good enough, especially with the newly emerging infectious diseases. Consequently, live pathogens are found in sewage sludge and their genetic information is found in composted sewage sludge.

That this level of disinfection (high-level) is an issue may be seen from the news of March 26 in Miami-- Congressional leaders called for an investigation, the VA medical center after learning that equipment used in colonoscopies was not properly sterilized. Point here is to show how difficult it is to kill these pathogens. Sewer plants with low-level disinfection just can't do it.

There are several good papers discussing pathogens in sewage sludge as well as antibiotic resistant pathogens. Sewer plants are industrial sized generators of antibiotic resistant pathogens. Merely go to Google and then to Pubmed, put in the key words sewage and antibiotic resistance and you will find 368 abstracts of scientific papers on the subject. The interesting thing is that some of these works go back into the 1960s. Thus the question, this information has been around for decades, why have the regulators chosen to ignore this long-standing body of literature? Who is watching for the public health----certainly not EPA.

Sara Firl's paper (The Importance of Municipal Sewage Treatment in the Spread of Antibiotic Resistance) should be read as also the work by Amy Pruden, who received a Presidential award for her work on antibiotic resistant genes (ARGs)and sewage (see citations below).

ARGs are not affected by typical levels of chlorine used in wastewater or drinking water and thus are found, for example, in drinking water. One of the things that aids all of this is the lack of effectiveness in filter systems used in water treatment (waste or drinking).

The sewage sludge is a byproduct of sewage treatment, it is the removed solids. What ever goes down the sewer is capable of being found in the sludge (biosoilds). This includes any number of industrial waste that are allowed to be sewered; it also includes untreated mortuary waste and hospital waste. The latter two are major sources of pathogens.

It will be very difficult to get the EPA to deal with this because it is promoting the land application of sewage sludge. How could that agency both promote the land application of sewage sludge and at the same time admit that sewage sludge is a major source of antibiotic resistance? I was on one of the EPA scientific panels and other scientists besides myself brought up this topic of transmission of antibiotic resistance via sewage sludge, this without any measurable response from the agency.

The genetic information in compost and sewage sludge that allows for pathogenesis is capable of being transferred to soil bacteria, thus self-perpetuating lending libraries can be established in the soil. The pathogens can track up into the flesh of crops, thus no amount of surface washing at the kitchen sink has any effect.

The regulators under Bush devised several processes to assure that this subject was not well circulated.

Dr Edo McGowan


Sara Firl----The Importance of Municipal Sewage Treatment in the Spread of Antibiotic Resistance

106th General Meeting of the American Society for Microbiology
May 21-25, 2006, Orlando, Florida

Association of pathogens and antibiotic resistance in sewage byproducts.

McGowan E.

J Environ Health. 2009 Mar;71(7):64. No abstract available.

PMID: 19326673 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

Related Articles

Comment on "antibiotic resistance genes as emerging contaminants: studies in northern Colorado".

McGowan E.

Environ Sci Technol. 2007 Apr 1;41(7):2651-2. No abstract available.

PMID: 17438829 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

Related Articles

Reducing bioaerosols dispersion from wastewater treatment and its land application: a review and analysis.

McGowan E.

J Environ Health. 2006 Jan-Feb;68(6):83; author reply 83. No abstract available.

PMID: 16483089 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

Related Articles

Post a comment

Verification (needed to reduce spam):

About Susan Reimer
Susan Reimer has spent 16 years writing about raising kids - among other topics - in her column for The Baltimore Sun. And every time son Joseph or daughter Jessie passed another milestone - driver's license, college, wedding or a move to a new military duty station - she has planted another garden. Now she will be writing about those gardens - and yours - here on Garden Variety.

Susan isn't an expert gardener, but she wasn't an expert mother, either. Both - the kids and the gardens - seem to be doing well in spite of her.

She lives in Annapolis with her husband, Gary Mihoces, who loves to cut his grass but has noticed that there seems to be less of it every time the kids pass another milestone.

Gardener's Supply Company - Deal of the Week
From The Baltimore Sun
Home & Garden section
Most Recent Comments
Photo galleries
Home & Garden marketplace
  • Sign up for the At Home newsletter
The home and garden newsletter includes design tips and trends, gardening coverage, ideas for DIY projects and more.
See a sample | Sign up

Stay connected