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Mad Cow U. S. A.: Could the Nightmare Happen Here?
by Sheldon Rampton; John Stauber

AVAILABILITY: Active Record (Available for Order)

Publication Date: September 1997
Publisher: Common Courage Press
Binding: Trade Cloth


Science, propaganda and the meat you eat.

"Some of the best investigative reporting around". — San Francisco Bay Guardian

"Every bit as mind-blowing as Upton Sinclair's The Jungle and Rachel Carson's Silent Spring". — Bill McKibben, Hungry Mind Review

After a decade of denial, the British government stunned the world in 1996 by admitting that the deadly dementia affecting its beef and dairy herds was "the most likely cause" of a new, equally deadly human disease which may have already infected millions of people. In the United States, meanwhile, official spokespersons continue to mislead the public with reassurances that the disease isn't happening and can't happen here. Mad Cow USA tells you the truth, based on extensive research and government documents obtained through the Freedom of Information Act.

Mad Cow USA looks at the scientists and science behind a rare and capricious class of diseases that have baffled researchers for centuries. It follows the career of eccentric doctor Carleton Gajdusek through his Nobel Prize-winning explorations of a devastating epidemic among human cannibals in Papua New Guinea. It charts the rise to prominence of Stanley Prusiner, once derided as a charlatan for his "prion" theory which "commits heresy against the central dogma of modern biology". It shows how other scientists' careers have risen and fallen based on their willingness to parrot government and industry assurances that your food is safe.

Mad Cow USA tells a scary story, and the scariest part of all is the picture it paints of scientific and government ignorance, arrogance and reckless technological tampering with the human food supply. It shows you where science, politics andmodern industry collide — on your dinner plate.


Mad Cow U.S.A. shatters the false belief that the government and food industry would never let it happen here. Even as tens of thousands of cows died in Britain, the government denied the risk to human beings. Knowing the similar risk in the U.S., government and industry have managed a successful public relations offensive to keep Americans in the dark. Rampton and Stauber expose, for the first time, the deadly game of "dementia roulette" being played with our food supply.


Includes bibliographical references (p. [225]-238) and index.

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