Geologists at the University of Cincinnati just wrapped up a three-year investigation of hydraulic fracturing and its impact on local water supplies. The result? There's no evidence—zero, zilch, nada—that fracking contaminates drinking water. Researchers hoped to keep these findings secret.
Why would a public research university boasting a top-100 geology program deliberately hide its work? Because, as lead researcher Amy Townsend-Small explained, "our funders, the groups that had given us funding in the past, were a little disappointed in our results. They feel that fracking is scary and so they were hoping our data could point to a reason to ban it."
That an environmentalist ideologue would see evidence of fracking's safety as "disappointing" is to be expected. But that a university would so flagrantly put politics before science is deeply troubling.
Hydraulic fracturing has significantly bolstered America's energy independence by unlocking an abundance of domestic oil and gas. In fact, our country has officially surpassed Russia and Saudi Arabia as the global leader in natural gas and oil production, respectively.
Just as important, these newfound energy resources have delivered economic benefits to Americans. In 2012, the average U.S. household had an extra $1,200 thanks to the energy boom. The oil and gas industry, meanwhile, supports more than 2 million jobs—a number that is expected to grow to nearly 5 million by 2025.
This energy renaissance has also helped the environment since fracking provides a cheaper, cleaner alternative to coal. Last April, energy-related carbon dioxide emissions hit a 27-year low, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, thanks largely to a widespread transition from coal to natural gas.
Richard Fernandez on How Tyrannies Implode
In his book Private Truth, Public Lies, social scientist Timur Kuran argued that people, under pressure to conform by culture leaders, often told public lies to get the pollsters and thought police off their backs, even as they nurtured largely undetected private resentments inside them. Over time, two divergent perceptions would emerge: the public lie would determine how the regime thought about itself while the private truth contained the real, but hidden data.
It's becoming evident that the European elites failed to understand how explosive the migrant issue was until it detonated full in their face. Now it is in the midst of a crisis which could literally bring down the European Union. Why didn't they see it coming? Because they believed their own Narrative, even when they should have suspected it was a lie of their own making. If the PC Western elites are overtaken by a cascade similar to that which collapsed the Soviet Union, the ultimate irony will be that the very migrants which they had counted on to create the Curley Effect will turn out to be the engine of their own destruction.
They will have been hoisted on their own petard, or perhaps, more accurately, sentenced by their own Narrative. The most dangerous lie is the one which you tell others, then wind up believing yourself. For many years the Western political elites not only espoused the "public lie", but made certain that anyone who refused to repeat it was pilloried by the thought police. Like the Soviets, they thought this solved the problem. But it only ensured that the spring would be wound -- and wound past the breaking point -- precisely where they could not see it strain.
From the looks of this, the conquest and Islamization of Europe will be easy. The German-language site Katholisches.info reports that “90 percent would convert to Islam without hesitation to save their own lives, the Islamic State (IS) should conquer the country. This ‘shock result’ (Il Giornale) came from a survey of 13-year-olds at an Italian secondary school. Only two of 25 students opposed conversion. Both students are from devout Catholic families.”
The teacher reportedly did not sugarcoat the Islamic State’s hostility to Christians and Christianity: “The teacher told her students that the IS destroyed all Christian symbols and threatened everyone who was not willing to convert to Islam with death. She also did not conceal that many Christians were killed, exiled or enslaved because of their faith by IS.”
These children in this Italian classroom are the products of a relativistic, materialistic, hedonistic culture that has relentlessly indoctrinated them with the ideas that all belief systems and cultures are of equal value and are essentially interchangeable, and that it is wrong and “racist” to oppose even an authoritarian and violent ideology, and that defense of one’s homeland and culture is likewise “racist,” and that Judeo-Christian Western civilization is itself uniquely “racist” and responsible for the great majority of the evil in the world.
The ideological struggle with Islam is in large part a spiritual struggle. It will be won by those with the deepest faith and strongest convictions. In other words, it’s the kind of struggle that many Europeans and Americans are ill-prepared for. While the mosques and Islamic schools have been delivering a purpose-driven message about Islam’s manifest destiny, multiculturalist educators in the West have done everything they can to undermine their student’s cultural foundations. According to multiculturalists, the worst crime is to deprive native peoples of their culture, yet all their efforts have been aimed at depriving Western students of their own multi-millennium cultural inheritance.
That’s what seems to have happened to the Italian students. In commenting on their response, Katholisches.info observed:
The theft of our own identity is proceeding on many levels… And now we are expected to tell our young people to take up weapons and defend themselves… In the name of what ideals and values are we to ask that of them? In the name of those ideas we never taught them, but denigrated in their eyes?
Those who are ashamed of their culture will not defend it—or, apparently, even themselves. If you believe in nothing important, then the prudent thing to do when faced with danger is to capitulate. As Alessandro Grotteri, the author of the Katholisches.info piece, puts it, “Decisive resistance comes from someone who is firmly founded in belief.”
The end result of the de-Christianization of Europe will very likely be the Islamization of Europe—unless, that is, Europeans are able to recover the faith that made Europe great in the first place. It was largely because of their Christian faith that Europeans of another era were able to resist Muslim forces at Tours, Lepanto, Malta, and Vienna, and to retake Spain from Muslim hands.
Actually, the attitude of the elites toward gender differences and their attitude toward Islam are connected. If you accept the proposition that your gender is whatever you wish it to be, then why not conclude that Islam is whatever you wish it to be? That is more or less what’s happened. European and American elites have constructed a make-believe version of Islam in their own minds. For them “Islam” means “peace,” “jihad” is a “spiritual struggle,” and violence has nothing to do with Islam....
The Caliphs of old who had their sights set on conquering Europe could only have dreamed about facing such clueless and spineless opponents.
Dennis Prager asks Why Does the Left Loathe Western Civilization?
Wherever there is conflict between the West — identified as white, capitalist, or of European roots — and the non-West, the Left portrays the West as the villain. I am referring to the Left, not to liberals. The latter generally venerated Western civilization. President Franklin Roosevelt, for example, frequently spoke of defending “Christian civilization.” Today, the Left would revile any Westerner who used such language as xenophobic, racist, and Fascist.
...the Left dismisses virtually all Western achievements, but regards criticism of anything non-Western as racist, chauvinistic, imperialist, colonialist, xenophobic, etc. That is why the Left is so protective of Islam. America’s first left-wing president, Barack Obama, will not use, or allow the government to use, the words “Islamic terrorism”; and all criticism of Islam is labeled “Islamophobic,” thereby morally equating any such criticism with racism. It is not that the Left is sympathetic to Islam; the Left has contempt for all religions. It is that many Muslims loathe the West, and the enemies of my enemy (the West) must be protected.
That is why the Left loathes Israel. If the Left actually cared about human rights, women’s rights, gay rights, or freedom of speech, religion, and the press, it would be wildly pro-Israel. But Israel, in the Left’s view, is white, European, and colonialist; in other words, Western. And the Palestinians are non-Western.
So, then, the Big Question is, Why? Why is the Left hostile to Western civilization? After decades of considering this question, the answer, I have concluded, is: standards. The Left hates standards – moral standards, artistic standards, cultural standards. The West is built on all three, and has excelled in all three.
Why does the Left hate standards? It hates standards because when there are standards, there is judgment. And Leftists don’t want to be judged.
Beauty Speaks writes Mina Milburn
It was a brief conversation, but it confirmed for me what I had suspected for some time: there was no place for me in the world of visual art....[One] day during my final semester when I asked the most approachable of my professors the question that I could find no answer for: “why make art?” She was understandably taken off guard by the question, and did her best. “Some people make art to express themselves…” is the only part that sticks in memory, though there was a bit more than that, but nothing convincing....that moment stands like a column marking the division between the time when I was pursing being an artist and the time when that idea was officially dead to me.
So I don’t know what specifically lead me to the great truth that I had needed for so many years, but I remember I was simply pondering the topic in the quiet of our dining room-studio after the students were gone and a phrase from an old jewelry advertisement wandered into my mind: “Beauty has its reasons” and I was thinking how that had not quite ever made sense.
Suddenly She stood in my mind’s eye, majestic, noble, powerful: Beauty. There she was – reason Enough. I sat down suddenly struck by the vision and truth and wept. To make something beautiful, to do something beautifully, that was all the reason one needed, Ever.
Does not God himself do the most amazing things for no other reason than the sheer Beauty of it? Consider the stars and moon! And someone explain why the ocean must be so Ravishing! Sun sets and rises, though no artist can do them justice, hit you in the very soul. And didn’t He make us in his likeness? don’t we enjoy bringing into existence something which was not there before? And don’t we always make our things to be shared? Always. And isn’t the beautiful thing like a blessing in solid form, something which lifts the heart just by being?
Is it not beauty the ornament of all Truth? Oh, Beauty, where had you been all these years? Why could I not see you were the reason all along?
“Because my dear child, those who trained your thinking did not want me. They could not bear me in their brave new world. They could not define, measure or quantify me and so they said I was not real. They dismissed me to the “eye of the beholder” which means beauty is nothing more than preference. So they denied my autonomy and authority. And you, poor thing, you couldn’t see me until the scales of the ugly stingy world were washed away and you were ready to look with new eyes.”
Anthony Watts on the Seven Earth Day predictions that failed spectacularly
1: “Civilization Will End Within 15 or 30 Years.”
Harvard biologist Dr. George Wald warned shortly before the first Earth Day in 1970 that civilization would soon end “unless immediate action is taken against problems facing mankind.” Three years before his projection, Wald was awarded the Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine....
2: “100-200 Million People Per Year Will Be Starving to Death During the Next Ten Years.”
Stanford professor Dr. Paul Ehrlich declared in April 1970 that mass starvation was imminent. ...
3: “Population Will Inevitably and Completely Outstrip Whatever Small Increases in Food Supplies We Make.”
4: “Demographers Agree Almost Unanimously … Thirty Years From Now, the Entire World … Will Be in Famine.”....
5: “In A Decade, Urban Dwellers Will Have to Wear Gas Masks to Survive Air Pollution.”
Life magazine stated in January 1970 ....
6: “Childbearing [Will Be] A Punishable Crime Against Society, Unless the Parents Hold a Government License.”
David Brower, the first executive director of The Sierra Club made the above claim and went on to say that “[a]ll potential parents [should be] required to use contraceptive chemicals, the government issuing antidotes to citizens chosen for childbearing.....
7: “By the Year 2000 … There Won’t Be Any More Crude Oil.”.....
Addendum via Ed Driscoll How could I forget?
Back in 1970, Earth Day was a grassroots hippie event. The organizers chose April 22 – which just “happens” to be the birthday of their Soviet Communist hero, Lenin...in fact, his 100th birthday.
Maybe long-time Earth Day advocate Ira Einhorn took the whole “recycling” thing a little too far when he “composted” his girlfriend’s remains in a trunk in his closet...
Ken Anderson describes Ira Einhorn, Earth Day's Dirty Secret as the co-organizer and master of ceremonies of the first Earth Day, who, in 1977 bludgeoned
his girlfriend of five years to death, fracturing her skull in a dozen places, Ira stuffed her body into a trunk, which he packed into a closet where it remained until discovered by the police nearly two years later...[after her] parents hired an investigator who very quickly came up with sufficient evidence for a warrant to search Einhorn's apartment...[where] the battered and partly mummified body of Holly Maddux was found in a trunk in a bedroom closet, packed in styrofoam, newspaper, and air fresheners.
Arrested, Einhorn's attorney was considering a run for the Senate. His name was Arlen Spector, of Pennsylvania. The darling of New Age society, politicians, Ivy League professors, and corporate executives alike, Einhorn had no shortage of friends during his bail hearing. With his great love for the earth, surely Ira would not have murdered anyone. Released on a mere $40,000 bail, of which he had to pay only ten percent, Einhorn fled to Sweden, remaining as a fugitive in Europe until 1997, when he was found living in France under another name.
While a fugitive, Einhorn was convicted in absentia in 1993, and sentenced to life in prison. The government of France, however, refused to extradite Einhorn unless the death penalty was taken off the table and he was promised a new trial. Eventually, this was agreed upon. Ira Einhorn, the founder of Earth Day, was once again convicted of murder and sentenced to life in prison.
An experimental drug designed to lower cholesterol may turn out to be an effective weapon against prostate cancer, research has shown.
Tumors need cholesterol to build their cell walls. By cutting their cholesterol production a chemical compound known as RO 48-8071 causes the cancerous cells to fall apart and die.
Professor Salman Hyder, from the University of Missouri in the US, who led the research said: 'Often, cancer patients are treated with toxic chemotherapies. The study, to appear in the journal OncoTargets and Therapy, tells how Professor Hyder's team found that the drug killed cancer cells in the laboratory. The compound was originally developed by the drug company Roche for the treatment of high cholesterol.
Common over-the-counter medicines should be avoided by older people as they have been linked to memory loss and problems in thinking, scientists have discovered. Treatments for colds and flu, hay fever, allergy and heartburn tablets containing anti-cholinergic drugs had the effect for one month after treatment, a study found. Effects associated with taking the drugs included having slower brain processing times and smaller brains overall. Well known treatments including the heartburn medicine Zantac, Night Nurse Liquid containing Promethazine and the sleeping tablet Nytol, containing diphenhydramine, are included among drugs that may result in the effects, the research said.
The drugs block the chemical acetylcholine, which is involved in the transmission of electrical impulses between nerve cells. The treatments are prescribed for a wide range of conditions, including Parkinson’s disease, overactive bladder, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, nausea and vomiting, sleeping problems, high blood pressure, depression and psychosis. But the authors warn: ‘Use of AC [anti-cholinergic] medication among older adults should likely be discouraged if alternative therapies are available.’
Previous studies have linked the drugs with cognitive impairment, increased risk of dementia and falls. However, the new study by Indiana University School of Medicine, is the first to explore their impact on brain metabolism and atrophy through brain scans.
Parkinson's disease drugs are more likely to turn patients into sex and gambling addicts than was previously thought, according to new research.
Scientists at Loyola University found the pills can also increase the risk of compulsive shopping and binge eating leading to disastrous consequences.
Previous research has suggested up to one in seven people taking the medications develop these impulse control disorders (ICDs) - but the problem is 'probably more prevalent', according to a review.
The jab that could end the misery of migraines New 'holy grail' drug slashes the number of attacks by up to 75%
Millions of people who suffer migraines have finally been offered hope of an effective treatment, after trials showed that a new injection could prevent attacks. In a trial of 600 people, the drug, code-named ALD403, significantly slashed attacks in a third of patients, Alder BioPharmaceuticals claims
Described as one of the few true ‘holy grails’ of medical research, an injection to truly tackle migraines is the being pursued by drugs giants Amgen, Eli Lilly and Teva, who are each competing with Alder BioPharmaceuticals to get the first license for the medication. Each of the four companies are developing variants of a drug which tackles a protein called calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP), which triggers the pain and nausea associated with a migraine. CGRP causes the swelling of blood vessels intertwined with nerve endings on both sides of the head.
Researchers have found that monoclonal blood proteins – antibodies specifically engineered to bind to CGRP – were able to ‘mop up’ the chemical, meaning it did not trigger a migraine.The research has now come to a point where we understand the condition enough that we have worked out how to treat it.
‘All the studies that have been done are positive, and there has been an almost-embarrassing lack of side effects.For a group of people who have never had a proper treatment, this is fantastic news.’
On the horizon. Flexible spinal cord implants will let paralyzed people walk
Doctors dream of helping the paralzyed walk through implants that stimulate their spinal cords, but current technology makes that impossible; these stiff, unnatural gadgets usually end up damaging or inflaming nervous tissue over time. Swiss researchers may have just solved this problem once and for all, though. Their bendy e-Dura implant combines flexible electrodes (made of platinum and silicon microbeads), cracked gold electronic tracks and fluidic microchannels to deliver both electrical impulses and chemicals while mimicking the spine's movements and avoiding friction. Paralyzed rats in lab tests could both walk again after a few weeks and keep wearing their implants after two months.
Professor Tim Spector, of King’s College London, said that everything we think we know about diets is wrong. He says bacteria in the stomach is more important than calorie counting. By eating the right foods we can cultivate more good bacteria to stay slim. ‘The more diverse foods we eat, the more varieties of microbes in our bodies, which makes us healthier.’ That includes cheese, chocolate, dairy, nuts and red wine are all on the menu. But avoid processed foods and they are limited in microbe levels because they are mainly made up of chemicals.
Doctors from the Hospital Clinic of Barcelona and Loma Linda University in Barcelona tracked cholesterol levels in more than 700 elderly men and women. Half added around 2oz of walnuts – roughly a handful - to their daily diet while the others ate as normal. After a year, levels of LDL cholesterol, the harmful form blamed for clogging arteries had fallen in the walnut-eaters. Those given the nuts as part of their diet did not experience weight gain.
Since childhood we are told to brush our teeth twice a day, or risk painful cavities and rotting teeth. But new research suggests that properly cleaning our teeth may also help ward off a pancreatic cancer. Pancreatic cancer has the worst survival rate of all 22 common cancers - at just 3 per cent. Scientists have discovered that pancreatic cancer is linked to two types of bacteria that also cause gum disease. A team in the US found that people who had these two bugs in their mouths were up to twice as likely to develop pancreatic cancer over the next decade.
Singing in a choir boosts the immune system and even helps the body fight cancer, according to research. Scientists found that just one hour of singing significantly increased levels of the immune proteins that the body uses to battle serious illnesses including cancer.
The new research, conducted by scientists at Imperial College London, University College London and the Royal College of Music, found that it also has a profound impact on the immune system. The team found that singing for an hour resulted in significant reductions in stress hormones, such as cortisol, and increases in cytokines, immune proteins that boost the body’s ability to fight serious illness. Doctors suspect that reducing stress and anxiety takes strain off the immune system, allowing it to better use its resources at fighting disease.
Researchers studied 128 runners participating in an 155-mile ultramarathon.. They applied paper tape to just one of each of the runners' feet and the untaped areas of the same foot served as a control. For 98 of the runners, no blisters formed where the tape had been applied
Taking the plant extract several times a day significantly inhibits the activation of a tobacco-derived carcinogen in smokers, a new study suggests.
The findings also show how the extract detoxifies environmental carcinogens and toxicants found in cigarette smoke. Furthermore, scientists at the University of Pittsburgh say the effect is stronger in people who lack certain genes involved in processing carcinogens.....Dr Yuan warned that while eating cruciferous vegetables, such as watercress and broccoli, is good for people, they are unlikely to have the same profound effect as the extract.
Just after the September 2001 attacks on the World Trade Center, I warned that radical Islam would horrify the West into submission. In Europe, it has taken a giant step towards success. Europe’s horror at the prospect of human suffering has made it supine. Sadly, the more the Europeans indulge in their humanitarian impulses, the more Muslims will suffer. To be kind is to be cruel.
Turkey’s President and de facto dictator Recep Tayyip Erdogan last October threatened European officials with 10,000 to 15,000 drowned migrants, according to minutes leaked to a Greek news site and widely reported by European mainstream media–with no official denial. Erdogan demanded 6 billion Euros up front and 3 billion Euros a year to stop the refugee flow....
The leader of a prominent Muslim country who claims to speak for the Muslim world threatened the Europeans with 10,000 or 15,000 Muslim deaths. When in world history has one side in negotiations threaten to kill its own people in order to gain leverage?
I argued in October 2001 that the mass sacrifice of Muslim lives lay at the heart of battle plan of radical Islam:....Evil for its own sake becomes imaginable only when the Christian civilization of the West abandons Christianity and stares into the abyss of its own destruction….The grand vulnerability of the Western mind is horror. The Nazis understood this and pursued a policy “des Schreckens” (to cause horror) and “Entsetzens” (terror, literally: dislodgement). Horror was not merely an instrument of war in the traditional sense, but a form of Wagnerian theater, or psychological warfare on the grand scale. Hitler’s tactical advantage lay in his capacity to be more horrible than his opponents could imagine.
The more the West indulges its humanitarian sentiments–that is, its squeamishness in the face of absolute evil–the more calamities will befall Muslim civilians, because Muslim leaders from Raqqa to Ankara have learned to weaponize horror. Staging humanitarian catastrophes in order to blackmail the West has succeeded for the most part. What would be required to persuade the likes of President Erdogan that the West will not accede to blackmail? Sadly, the West would have to watch with indifference as horrors unfolded on its borders. The Pakistani who threatened to hang himself earlier this month at a refugee camp in Lesbos will not go back to his miserable life in Pakistan unless the alternative at a European refugee camp is even nastier. To be kind is to be cruel: it encourages horrific outcomes staged to manipulate the Western conscience. Paradoxically, to be cruel is to be kind.
Water samples from Puget Sound showed high levels of Prozac, bug spray, cocaine, Zantac, ibuprofen and 77 other drugs. These drugs littered not only the water but also the tissue of juvenile chinook salmon.
From canning beer, making braided wire, industrial bacon slicer, making Crayola crayons and my personal favorite, harvesting carrots.
All of them orchids with names like swaddled babies, flying duck orchid, hooker's lips orchid, ballerina orchid, monkey orchid, naked man orchid, laughing bumblebee orchid and white egret orchid
Swaddled babies orchid
The default location for 600 million IP addresses just happens to be the front yard of Joyce Taylor’s farm...For the last decade, Taylor and her renters have been visited by all kinds of mysterious trouble. They’ve been accused of being identity thieves, spammers, scammers and fraudsters. They’ve gotten visited by FBI agents, federal marshals, IRS collectors, ambulances searching for suicidal veterans, and police officers searching for runaway children. They’ve found people scrounging around in their barn. The renters have been doxxed, their names and addresses posted on the internet by vigilantes. Once, someone left a broken toilet in the driveway as a strange, indefinite threat. All in all, the residents of the Taylor property have been treated like criminals for a decade. And until I called them this week, they had no idea why.
That's feather identification expert Roxie Laybourne surrounded by colorful birds. Photographer Chip Clark took roughly 8 hours to set it up.
Carol Butler, the assistant director of the museum’s collections, said "These images come from a motivation to show people, in a beautiful and interesting way, a view into the richness of the collections. These are America's collections—so we want to give people a view into the collections even though we can't invite every single person to walk through the storage areas."
The new cross, called Kaleabis, would be available as a superfood juice shot in Oregon dispensaries this summer.
The Duchess of Cambridge, 34, was left stunned today when she discovered the very rude translation of a song cheerleaders were chanting during an archery contest in Bhutan. Traditionally in Bhutan, men sing songs to celebrate hitting the target and are cheered on by women supporters who sing songs of support for their own men, and obscene chants to try to distract their rivals. And it turned out that at today's contest, the female cheerleaders were chanting: 'You're bald. You're a baldy. Your nose is really big. We hope your private parts are as big.'
International crime rings targeting California's booming agriculture industry are increasingly stealing truckloads of high-value nuts, prompting authorities and the firms falling victim to ramp up efforts to break the spree costing millions. The sophisticated organizations in many cases use high-tech tactics, hacking into trucking companies to steal their identity. Armed with false shipping papers, they pose as legitimate truckers, driving off with loads of nuts such as almonds, walnuts or pistachios valued at $150,000, and some worth $500,000 each.
Yellow pencils have been a tradition since the late 1800s, when the best graphite in the world was produced in China. Western pencil tycoons wanted their customers to know their pencils were filled with top-quality lead, so they painted their instruments in the color associated with Chinese royalty:
The country that gave the world Kafka, sugar cubes and Pilsner Urquell beer is to get a rebrand. Officials at the Czech Republic's foreign ministry believe a new name - Czechia - is more practical and flexible when referring to the state. Unlike most European countries, the Czech Republic has lacked a one-word version of its name in foreign languages. Neighboring Slovakia is officially the Slovak Republic and similarly the Russian Federation is shortened to Russia in everyday conversation. President Miloš Zeman regularly uses the name to refer to his country and said on a trip to Israel in 2013: 'I use "Czechia" because it sounds nicer and it’s shorter than the cold "Czech Republic".'...Not everyone is happy with the plans though, critics have said the new name could be confused with the Russian republic of Chechnya - almost 2,000 miles to the east.
The exceptionally well-preserved tableau had remained hidden in the attic of their home outside Toulouse, southwestern France, untouched for more than 150 years since an ancestor brought it back to France from his campaigns abroad as an officer of Napoleon’s army. Experts have already dubbed the incredible find a “momentous occasion” in European art history and the “most important painting by far” to have emerged by one of the great masters in modern times.
Judith Beheading Holofernes
Otherwise known as ambergris which perfumers use to make scent last longer. ""It smells too bad, though. It's a very distinctive smell, like a cross between squid and farmyard manure."
In Aeon, Hail the maintainers Capitalism excels at innovation but is failing at maintenance, and for most lives it is maintenance that matters more
First, it is crucial to understand that technology is not innovation. Innovation is only a small piece of what happens with technology. This preoccupation with novelty is unfortunate because it fails to account for technologies in widespread use, and it obscures how many of the things around us are quite old. In his book, Shock of the Old (2007), the historian David Edgerton examines technology-in-use. He finds that common objects, like the electric fan and many parts of the automobile, have been virtually unchanged for a century or more.
Focusing on infrastructure or on old, existing things rather than novel ones reminds us of the absolute centrality of the work that goes into keeping the entire world going. Despite recurring fantasies about the end of work or the automation of everything, the central fact of our industrial civilization is labor, and most of this work falls far outside the realm of innovation.
We can think of labor that goes into maintenance and repair as the work of the maintainers, those individuals whose work keeps ordinary existence going rather than introducing novel things. Brief reflection demonstrates that the vast majority of human labor, from laundry and trash removal to janitorial work and food preparation, is of this type: upkeep.
Ripped from the headlines. April 14th. Metro train gets stuck in tunnel near Rosslyn, all passengers evacuated safely Less than a month ago, a fire in a tunnel halted rail service. Metro explains it all started as a debris fire that damaged a cable. What in God's name is debris doing in that tunnel?
Built in the 1970s, D.C's subway system is falling apart. The Tragic Deterioration of D.C.’s Great Society Subway
But after 40 years it has come to be government at its dreariest, with problems overlooked, maintenance deferred, and safety scanted by employees secure against discipline or dismissal and more concerned about overtime pay and pensions than serving the public.
Brendan O'Neill, The Mask Has Slipped in Reason
The real problem in Europe today is not so much Islamophobia, though anti-Muslim sentiment certainly exists; it’s Charliephobia, if we take this term to mean the fear of letting a magazine, or anyone else for that matter, dissent from PC orthodoxy, reject relativism, and engage in robust discussion about any worldview they choose. It’s this culture of worshipping self-censorship over freedom of thought and frankness of debate that is damaging public life and brewing communal tension and in some cases violence. Indeed, I would say that the campaign against Islamophobia has done more to foster awkwardness and bitterness in 21st-century Europe than Islamophobia has.
So yes, a mask has slipped. The Charliephobes’ mask. Their claim to be against "punching down," to care about ordinary, vulnerable people, has been exposed as utter bunkum. In truth, they’re all about protecting a global religion, an ideology, from ridicule, and in the process they’re doing more damage to freedom and social solidarity in Europe than they could ever understand.
"Besides democracy, education, philosophy, logic, mathematics, engineering, literature, and theater, what has Western civilization ever done for us?” Monty Python, The Life of Brian.
In a startling development, Stanford University students are petitioning to be taught Western civilization ...headed up by undergraduate Harry Elliott, editor-in-chief of “The Stanford Review,” an independent campus newspaper.....
[L]earning about Western culture isn’t simply about undertaking a cohesive study of the history, philosophy, literature, and arts that have enormously influenced the world in which we all live. It is also about learning how to express ideas effectively, how to separate fact from propaganda through specific tools of learning developed in the West. Taking those tools away—such as the Socratic method, civil discourse, and rules of order and civil debate—hinders clarity, independent thought, and the powers of observation. It makes students far less able to resist conformity and groupthink.
The author of the piece and former Stanford student Stella Morabito asks
How and why did such huge swaths of foundational knowledge—of history, philosophy, art, and literature—become forbidden fruit? So much basic knowledge was withheld—stolen—from me through random and faddish courses that claimed to be more ‘relevant’ to education. I remember this realization happening to me. I was at first confused, then livid. In the end, they amounted to disjointed fragments of information. Later in life I picked up the pieces through self-education.
As you would expect, this proposal the proposal sparked outrage.
“The Review’s staff have been called everything from ‘dusty’ to ‘racist’ to ‘b–ch’ to ‘pendejos’ to ‘disgusting,’” Elliott expanded in an editor’s note published Monday. “We have been repeatedly ‘invited’ to ‘wonderful events’ with ‘constructive dialogue.’ Unfortunately, Review members who have tried to attend such events have been refused entry at the door.”
“Signers of the petition have reported being personally called out in dining halls and student group meetings, and have been systematically contacted to justify their signatures. They have also been publicly branded as supporters of ‘racism,’ ‘elitism,’ ‘classism’ and ‘hatred,’” Elliott wrote. He also pointed to Facebook statuses posted by members of the activist community at Stanford, which show the individuals claiming that they have downloaded the list of signers in order to use it against them in the future.
Stanford Law professor Michael McConnell, told the Review that he has taught many students in recent years who had “little or no familiarity with the political, intellectual, and cultural history that shaped the American legal tradition.” “I’ve encountered students who have never heard of Hobbes and Locke, do not know the causes of the American Revolution, are unfamiliar with the Lincoln-Douglas debates, haven’t a clue about Progressivism or the New Deal, don’t know what separates Protestants and Catholics, and have only the vaguest sense what race relations were like before the Civil Rights Act of 1964. One thing a great university provides is education about what educated people should learn,” McConnell is quoted as saying.
One suspected—suspected, mind you—supporter was stripped from helming a support network for low-income students. Evidently his co-leaders concluded there are no good reasons a low-income student might want to study the history of the society whose economic ladder he is trying to climb.
Why target Western civilization? This counter-campaign calling itself “Who’s Teaching Us?” (WTU) promotes diversity, which Western civilization—the civilization that eliminated slavery, empowered women, and introduced the idea of equality—apparently does not have enough of.
If WTU truly wants to further diversity at Stanford, probably the single best thing it could do is to support the Stanford Review’s call for a Western civilization requirement. There are 579 distinct courses that meet Stanford’s “Engaging Diversity” requirement. There is none available to the entire student body that surveys the history of the first culture to appreciate intellectual diversity and enshrine intellectual liberty in law. That’s a history lesson all colleges and universities should learn.
In 1964, all of the nation’s top 50 colleges and universities had a Western civilization course, and in most of them it was required. In 2010, not a single one of those same universities required the class, and two-thirds of them did not even offer it, according to a 2011 study by the National Association of Scholars.
UPDATE: Stanford Students Reject Western Civilization By A 6-To-1 Margin. These students are supposedly part of the "best and the brightest" who will be running the country and the corporations in a few years. Just last December, students at Yale willingly sign 'petition' to repeal First Amendment. They are willing to throw the greatest treasures of our national heritage in the trash. How long will it be before they or their children realize how stupid they are?
Who wants government at any level to regulate political speech and expression? Not any sensible, rational adult, conscious of their responsibility to pass on the freedoms they have been given. Just ideologues who want power and no dissent like the president of the National Organization of Women. NOW: Abortion Is 'Necessary'; First Amendment Should Be Repealed
Calling for a repeal of the First Amendment in order to empower the government to regulate political speech and expression, O’Neill demanded an overturning of the Supreme Court’s 2010 Citizens United v. FEC ruling. Senate Democrats unanimously voted in favor of repealing the First Amendment in September of 2014.
The former head of Britain’s Equalities and Human Rights Commission (EHRC), Trevor Phillips, has admitted he “got almost everything wrong” on Muslim immigration in a damning new report on integration, segregation, and how the followers of Islam are creating “nations within nations” in the West.
Phillips, a former elected member of the Labour Party who served as the Chairman of the EHRC from 2003-2012 will present “What British Muslims Really Think” on Channel 4 on Wednesday. An ICM poll released to the Times ahead of the broadcast reveals:
One in five Muslims in Britain never enter a non-Muslim house;
39 per cent of Muslims, male and female, say a woman should always obey her husband;
31 per cent of British Muslims support the right of a man to have more than one wife;
52 per cent of Muslims did not believe that homosexuality should be legal;
23 per cent of Muslims support the introduction of Sharia law rather than the laws laid down by parliament.
Phillips comments: “Some of my journalist friends imagine that, with time, the Muslims will grow out of it. They won’t.”....Many of our (distinctly un-diverse) elite political and media classes simply refuse to acknowledge the truth. Any undesirable behaviors are attributed to poverty and alienation. Backing for violent extremism must be the fault of the Americans. Oppression of women is a cultural trait that will fade with time, nothing to do with the true face of Islam.”
In terms of solutions, Mr. Phillips opines on “halting the growth of sharia courts and placing them under regulation” ensuring that school governance never falls into the hands of a single-minority group, “ensuring mosques that receive a steady flow of funds from foreign governments such as Saudi Arabia, however disguised, are forced to reduce their dependency on Wahhabi patronage” and an end to the “silence-for-votes understanding between local politicians and Muslim leaders — the sort of Pontius Pilate deal that had such catastrophic outcomes in Rotherham and Rochdale”.
Mr. Phillips’s comments echo those of the Czech president, and research from across Europe that revealed attitudes amongst Muslims on the continent have hardened. The younger the Muslim, the more likely they are to hold hard-line views, one recent study found.
This is horrifyingly stupid. 16 Democrat AGs Begin Inquisition Against ‘Climate Change Disbelievers’
Treating climate change as an absolute, unassailable fact, instead of what it is—an unproven, controversial scientific theory—a group of state attorneys general have announced that they will be targeting any companies that challenge the catastrophic climate change religion.
The coalition of 17 inquisitors are calling themselves “AGs United for Clean Power.” The coalition consists of 15 state attorneys general (California, Connecticut, Illinois, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia, and Washington State), as well as the attorneys general of the District of Columbia and the Virgin Islands. Sixteen of the seventeen members are Democrats, while the attorney general for the Virgin Islands, Claude Walker, is an independent.
The inquisitors are threatening legal action and huge fines against anyone who declines to believe in an unproven scientific theory....The American Climate Change Inquisition appears to be just getting started. By threatening legal action and huge fines against anyone who declines to believe their climate theories, the attorneys general in this coalition are trying to end the debate over climate change, declaring any dissent to be blasphemy regardless of what many scientists believe. This strikes a serious blow against the free flow of ideas and the vigorous debate over scientific issues that is a hallmark of an advanced, technological society like ours.
Last Friday, Claude Walker, attorney general of the US Virgin Islands issued a Subpoena to the Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI) for ten years of internal documents regarding CEI's work on climate change and energy policy including private donor information.
Hans von Spakovsky, Heritage Foundation on The Left's Climate Inquisition: "This investigation is intended to silence and chill any opposition. It is disgraceful and contemptible behavior by public officials who are willing to exploit their power to achieve ideological ends….This affront to our grand tradition of free speech and vigorous scientific debate that should not be tolerated.
Megan McArdle, Bloomberg View, in Subpoenaed Into Silence calls the new developments “an attempt to criminalize advocacy”....It doesn’t mention any law that ExxonMobil may have broken. It is also borderline delusional....Prosecutors know the damage they can do even when they don't have a leg to stand on. The threat of investigation can coerce settlements even in weak cases....the process itself can be the punishment, as victims are forced to spend immense amounts on legal fees, and immense time and money on complying with investigations
This is the latest effort in an intimidation campaign to criminalize speech and research on the climate debate, led by New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman and former Vice President Al Gore.....CEI will vigorously fight to quash this subpoena. It is an affront to our First Amendment rights of free speech and association for Attorney General Walker to bring such intimidating demands against a nonprofit group,” said CEI General Counsel Sam Kazman. “If Walker and his allies succeed, the real victims will be all Americans, whose access to affordable energy will be hit by one costly regulation after another, while scientific and policy debates are wiped out one subpoena at a time.”
As of March 27, researchers had published 133 “consensus-skeptical” papers this year, bringing to 660 the number of such studies appearing since January 2014.
Not only are things not as bad as we thought, they are much, much better. And they’re improving. Crop output is up, the world is greener, storms are down in frequency and number, and on and on, despite the forecasts of doom foisted on the public by politicians and media.
But why are things better? Because of the beneficial effects of releasing carbon-dioxide into the atmosphere. Craig Idso, a bona fide scientist who also spoke at the event, cataloged the good CO2 does. Plants grow not just a little better when CO2 is increased, but they are vastly improved. They have greater mass, more roots, better leafs, they use water more efficiently and, the biggest surprise, they react to warmer temperatures more robustly. These entirely salutary effects are so well known (to scientists) that commercial greenhouses artificially boost CO2 to levels about three times higher than are found in the atmosphere.
In times past, atmospheric CO2 levels were up to 30 times higher — pause and reflect on the number — than they are now; and indeed we are now in a historic, almost dangerously low, period. Yet even though CO2 was then so much higher than mankind could ever hope now to achieve even if we burn every drop of oil that exists, there was no runaway global warming. Why should we expect it now?
The study in the journal Nature published Thursday examining Northern Hemisphere rainfall data going back 1,200 years found that today’s climate models were frequently wrong on predicting extreme rain and drought. In the 20th century, for example, higher-than-average temperatures failed to produce wet-dry extremes, which contradicts the United Nations’ Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s consensus that global warming will make dry areas drier and wet areas wetter.
No Statistically Significant Satellite Warming For 23 Years (Now Includes February Data)
If anyone is to be prosecuted, it should be the scaremongers writes David French
Al Gore: Ten years ago, the former vice president of the United States launched an extraordinarily lucrative career by selling climate doomsday. While promoting his Oscar-winning documentary, An Inconvenient Truth, he made a shockingly false statement. He said that unless the world took “drastic measures” to reduce greenhouse gases, it would reach a “point of no return” in ten years.
ABC/Walt Disney Company: Good Morning America claimed that in 2015 milk would cost almost $13 a gallon, gas would be more than $9 a gallon, “flames [would] cover hundreds of square miles,” one billion people would be malnourished, and Manhattan would be flooding — all because of climate change.
United Nations: In 2007, the chairman of the U.N.’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, Rajenda Pachauri, said, “If there’s no action before 2012, that’s too late. . . . What we do in the next two to three years will determine our future. This is the defining moment.
Good sea-dog! Meet Lila the Labrador who catches LOBSTERS for her owner
Alex Schulze has trained Lila the Labrador to dive and catch lobsters. All he has to do is point in direction of lobster, and Lila does rest
The inventors of Bubblewrap thought of it as a new type of wallpaper, but when they were left with tons of inventory....
Castaways Rescued After Spelling 'Help' with palm fronds. Navy plane spotted men on remote Pacific island. The men, who also waved orange life jackets to attract the plane's attention, had been stranded for three days after their boat capsized, forcing them to swim all night to the island.
Seal Crosses The Road Every Day To Visit Seafood Restaurant. Video at link.
Street Artist Installs Secret Rooms Under Abandoned Manholes In Milan That's where Italian artist Biancoshock has been busy converting the spaces below manholes and the other metal shutter doors you sometimes see in the middle of the sidewalks, into little secret rooms.
From the MIT Technology Review, The Rogue Immune Cells That Wreck the Brain.
Beth Stevens thinks she has solved a mystery behind brain disorders such as Alzheimer’s and schizophrenia.
Microglia are part of a larger class of cells—known collectively as glia—that carry out an array of functions in the brain, guiding its development and serving as its immune system by gobbling up diseased or damaged cells and carting away debris.
In one groundbreaking paper, in January, Stevens and researchers at the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard showed that aberrant microglia might play a role in schizophrenia—causing or at least contributing to the massive cell loss that can leave people with devastating cognitive defects. Crucially, the researchers pointed to a chemical pathway that might be targeted to slow or stop the disease. Last week, Stevens and other researchers published a similar finding for Alzheimer’s.
This might be just the beginning. Stevens is also exploring the connection between these tiny structures and other neurological diseases—work that earned her a $625,000 MacArthur Foundation “genius” grant last September. All of this raises intriguing questions. Is it possible that many common brain disorders, despite their wide-ranging symptoms, are caused or at least worsened by the same culprit, a component of the immune system? If so, could many of these disorders be treated in a similar way—by stopping these rogue cells?
Not so long ago, it was accepted that the immune system had little effect on the brain. But in the past two years, that assumption has blown up.
Already this year, a coalition of Alzheimer's researchers have urged scientists to reassess the evidence that Alzheimer's could be spread by microbes. The herpes virus - the kind that causes cold sores - and two types of bacteria, all of which have already been linked to Alzheimer's disease. ..."We are saying there is incontrovertible evidence that Alzheimer’s Disease has a dormant microbial component," said Douglas Kell, a chemist from the University of Manchester in the UK, who was one of the editorial's authors. "We can’t keep ignoring all of the evidence."
A new study at the University of California, Irvine, new study revealed key immune cells located outside of the brain actually help rid the brain of the plaques that build up and trigger the disease. Study co-author Dr Mathew Blurton-Jones said: ‘We were very surprised by the magnitude of this effect.
A study last year shows that our immune system,… plays a part in the debilitating disease. The Duke University study in mice found that in Alzheimer's disease, certain immune cells that normally protect the brain begin to abnormally consume an important nutrient: arginine. Blocking this process with a small-molecule drug prevented the characteristic brain plaques and memory loss in a mouse model of the disease.
Alzheimer's could be prevented and even cured by boosting the brain's own immune response, scientists at Stanford University believe. Researchers discovered that nerve cells die because cells which are supposed to clear the brain of bacteria, viruses and dangerous deposits, stop working. These cells, called 'microglia' function well when people are young, but when they age, a single protein called EP2 stops them operating efficiently. Now scientists have shown that blocking the protein allows the microglia to function normally again so they can hoover up the dangerous sticky amyloid-beta plaques which damage nerve cells in Alzheimer's disease. The researchers found that, in mice, blocking EP2 with a drug reversed memory loss and myriad other Alzheimer’s-like features in the animals.
For the past few decades, British authorities have been caught up in the pervasive meme of multiculturalism -- the falsehood that all cultures are equal and that to believe otherwise is to commit the worst modern day offense -- to be “racist.” Under this fallacy, the British government in 2001 introduced a series of restrictive speech codes that criminalized criticism of Islam, followed by a Racial and Religious Hatred Bill imposing fines and even imprisonment for speech that “incited hatred against a person for their religious or racial background.”
In this context and political climate, with racism conflated with religion – one specific religion – it is easy to see how government and public service employees would fear professional and legal repercussions (up to seven years in prison) merely for speaking up about criminal behavior by Muslims who justify their actions citing the Koran. In this way, teachers, police, child care workers, government officials and others have been silent about the growing menace of Muslim gangs who sexually groom and exploit children in the UK.
In his riveting book, Easy Meat: Inside Britain’s Grooming Gang Scandal author Peter McLoughlin explains how multiculturalism-inspired political correctness along with its companion, willful blindness concerning Islamic doctrine, has jeopardized the safety and well-being of children. McLoughlin posits that, since 1988, this nationwide sexploitation has resulted in the shattering of lives of between 100,000 to 1 million girls. The author documents how the fear of being deemed racist and facing criminal charges, dismissal or even threats of violence, has led to suppression of information and a stunning lack of intervention on behalf of young victims. In essence, an extensive, insidious operation that targets children for sexual grooming and enslavement has been covered up because of political correctness and fear of Muslim retribution.
In his research on Muslim groomers, McLoughlin uncovered an unusual distinction between them and non-Muslim pedophiles. Non-Muslim pedophiles are typically lone adults who groom children for sex in reclusive secrecy, worry about being prosecuted by law enforcement, meet accusations with defensive denial and worry about being discovered, shamed, and criticized by friends or relatives. Muslim perpetrators, however, work in gangs, see nothing wrong with their shariah-sanctioned activities, receive collusive support from their communities and feel they are above the law.
McLoughlin makes reference to the staggering profitability of the sex grooming enterprise for the Muslim community. He cites a 2007 expose, Mothers of Prevention by Julie Bindel, a feminist writer and founder of the legal reform group, Justice for Women. Bindel estimated that a pimp can make $325,000 to $550,000 annually with one 16-year-old girl. ...
The author reports that police routinely dismiss parents’ concerns and have failed to set up surveillance operations at strategically significant locations. Police have even arrested parents for trying to save their children. In one such case, fathers, who were able to track down their daughters and tried to rescue them were arrested by police. In fact, McLoughlin discloses that law enforcement officers have actually returned wayward girls to their pimps.
McLoughlin reveals that local authorities – social workers, teachers’ unions, educational organizations and childcare agencies – have made no effort to intervene or draw public attention to the pervasive threat. He submits that feared charges of racism preclude their mandated responsibility for the protection of children. In fact, the author reports how major teachers' unions are behind an organization – Unite Against Fascism – that blocks the publicizing of the sex grooming gang phenomenon and its Muslim community participation.
In Easy Meat, McLoughlin details how the sexploitation and enslavement of girls, once viewed as a great evil in Western society, has become a pervasive, routine, and almost pedestrian part of everyday life in the UK. On this issue, the courageous author effectively deals with the contention that Western civilization is fighting for its very existence in a clash between civilization and barbarism. His book serves as a grave warning for other countries as they consider increased levels of Muslim immigration.
How does a nation commit suicide? Peter McLoughlin's Easy Meat is a harrowing step-by-step chronicle of how Britain is doing just that, by sacrificing its girls to the idols of multiculturalism and political correctness. McLoughlin lays out in heart-wrenching detail how British officials abandoned thousands of unfortunate girls to the depredations of Muslim rape gangs who were inspired and motivated by Islamic teachings on the treatment of infidel women, and did nothing to save them for fear of being called "racist" and "Islamophobic." Young girls and women are the future of any nation; what Britain has done to its own has condemned it to a future of chaos, civil war, and slavery. Peter McLoughlin has done an invaluable service in laying out exactly how it all happened. May this important book serve as a cautionary tale for nations that are still free.
Over the past few years, I've followed this appalling story, but for those who haven't, the brief recap below is from Wikipedia. In every case, the victims were poor, white girls and the perpetrators were from various countries, but all had a Muslim heritage.
In Rotherham, there have been trials, investigations, coverups and several subsequent investigations that horrified the nation
The Alexis Jay report published on 26 August 2014 revealed that the number of children sexually exploited in Rotherham between 1997 and 2013 was, by "conservative estimate", at least 1,400. According to the report, children as young as eleven were "raped by multiple perpetrators, abducted, trafficked to other cities in England, beaten and intimidated." Three previous inquiries—in 2002, 2003 and 2006—had presented similar findings but, according to the report, had been "effectively suppressed" because officials "did not believe the data"....The inquiry team found examples of "children who had been doused in petrol and threatened with being set alight, threatened with guns, made to witness brutally violent rapes and threatened they would be next if they told anyone"...
Home Secretary Theresa May described the failures of police and council agencies to deal with child sex abuse as a complete dereliction of duty. She said that "institutionalized political correctness" had contributed to the authorities turning a blind eye to the abuse: "I am clear that cultural concerns – both the fear of being seen as racist, and the frankly disdainful attitude to some of our most vulnerable children – must never stand in the way of child protection. We know that child sexual exploitation happens in all communities. There is no excuse for it in any of them.
The Rochdale sex trafficking gang preyed on under-age white teenage girls in Rochdale, Greater Manchester, England.
The Derby sex gang was a group of men who sexually abused up to a hundred girls, 12-18, in Derby, England.
The Oxford sex gang was a group of seven men who preyed on more than 300 pre-teen and under-age teenage girls in Oxford, England.
The Bristol sex gang was a large group of Somali men who committed serious sexual offenses against underage teenage girls in Bristol, England.
The Telford sex gang was a group of seven men who preyed extensively on pre-teen and under-age teenage girls in Telford, England.
The Peterborough sex abuse case involved groups of men who committed serious sexual offenses against under-aged girls, some as young as 12, in the English city of Peterborough, Cambridgeshire.
The Banbury sex gang was a group of seven men who committed serious sexual offenses against under-aged girls in the English town of Banbury, Oxfordshire.
The Aylesbury sex gang was a group of six men of South Asian heritage who committed serious sexual offenses against two under-aged girls in the English town of Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire.
The Keighley sex gang was a group of 12 men of Muslim heritage who committed serious sexual offenses against two under-aged white girls in the English town of Keighley and city of Bradford, West Yorkshire.
Hiniker and her colleagues wanted to understand what kids want from their parents when it comes to technology. The team asked 249 parent-child pairs, with kids ages 10 to 17, to respond to a survey about their rules, expectations and desires around technology use.
Many children said they wish their parents would unplug at certain times and not use technology at all so that they could be "more present," the survey found. Unsurprisingly, children also wanted their parents to use technology in moderation, and to avoid texting or calling while driving, even while sitting at a stoplight.
Children also chafed at hypocrisy. Kids thought that parents who spend their dinnertimes typing out that last email for work shouldn't expect their children to abide by a "no devices at dinner" rule,
"Twice as many children as parents expressed concerns about family members oversharing personal information about them on Facebook and other social media without permission," .... "Many children said they found that content embarrassing and felt frustrated when their parents continued to do it."
Connor was in the midst of full-blown obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). Bewildered by the dramatic change, his parents were trying desperately to help him, and to figure out what had happened to their son.
OCD is a common, chronic, and long-lasting disorder in which a person has uncontrollable, reoccurring thoughts (obsessions) and behaviors (compulsions) that he or she feels the urge to complete over and over. .....Connor had been exhibiting increasing and multiplying signs of the disorder, launched by an overwhelming fear of germs. He developed rituals to rid himself of perceived contaminants by taking multiple, lengthy showers a day, and washing his hands until “they looked like he was wearing red gloves,” Lucia recalls. He began avoiding conversations, fearful that traces of spittle might fall on him from the other person. At times, he would only touch light switches and other objects around the house with his shirtsleeves wrapped over his hands, so some family members wore rubber gloves to help buffer Connor’s fears. Midnight runs to the grocery store for special soaps and scrubbing utensils that Connor needed became frequent.
Saving Sammy: A Mother’s Fight to Cure Her Son’s OCD by Beth Alison Maloney is the story of a mother who fought to find a cure for her son, who had inexplicably been afflicted with OCD and Tourette’s syndrome. In her mission to heal her child, Maloney uncovered research that linked his mental illnesses to a previously unknown strep infection. Despite ignorance and some opposition from parts of the medical community, Maloney found doctors who were willing to help treat Sammy with the crucial assistance of prolonged antibiotics to rid his system of the strep virus.
As soon as Lucia cracked open the pages of Saving Sammy, she felt like she’d found the missing puzzle piece that had been eluding her for so long: Connor’s OCD might be rooted in a simple strep infection....Controversy or not, when Lucia Odom stumbled upon Beth Maloney and her book, it unlocked a once impenetrable door. With antibiotic treatment and behavioral therapies, Connor has emerged, saying he feels like a new person.
The most recent study is yet another one from India, making the total number of South Asian studies (India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka) 15, all since 2008. Every one of them reports increased breast cancer risk with abortion, with risk increases as high as almost 2,000 percent (20-fold)
On the horizon. A skin patch to treat melanoma..
Scientists developed a revolutionary skin patch with microneedles, filled with antibodies to help T cells attack cancer cells and delivering slow-releasing cancer immunotherapy directly to the site of melanoma. Scientists say patch is more effective than injections or drug cocktails.
Tweaking our gut bacteria could help protect our brain from strokes Experiments with animals saw 60% less brain damage.
Recent research has shown how fundamentally important the bacteria in our gut are to the rest of our mental and physical health, affecting everything from our appetite to our state of mind. Now a new study suggests that our gut bacteria could even play a role in protecting us from brain damage, with an experiment involving mice showing that certain types of stomach microbes can actually help reduce the severity of strokes.
The findings, reported in Nature Medicine, suggest that the microbiota do not interact with the brain chemically, but somehow influence immune cells to promote neural survival. These immune cells end up making their way to the meninges – the outer covering of the brain – where they organize a response to mitigate the stroke.
From weakening the immune system to triggering thrush, this terrifying tool reveals exactly how the white stuff harms our health. Beneden, a healthcare insurance provider, has created an online tool showing how sugar affects the body which shows the differing effects of too much sugar on men, women and children. The sugar bowl tells you everything you need to know about sugar from how much sugar is in our grocery carts, how sugar affects our mental performance to breaking the sugar addiction and healthy alternatives
Chocolate Can Boost Your Workout. Really.
Adding a little dark chocolate to a training diet may effortlessly improve endurance performance, according to a new study of sports nutrition by researchers at Kingston University in England.
For some time, dark chocolate has been touted as a relatively healthy treat, with studies showing that small amounts may have benefits for the heart and brain. Most of this research has focused on the role of a substance called epicatechin, a plant nutrient found in cocoa. Dark chocolate is generally rich in epicatechin, though levels vary, depending on how the sweet was produced. Levels of epicatechin tend to be much lower in milk chocolate, which contains little cocoa.
The Food and Drug Administration approved PCSK9 inhibitors last year, but only for small groups of people, including those with an inherited disease that dramatically elevates their LDL cholesterol levels.
The PCSK9 inhibitor works by blocking a substance that hinders the liver’s ability to remove cholesterol from the blood. Ezetemibe, by contrast, decreases cholesterol absorption in the small intestine. The monthly injections of the PCSK9 inhibitor proved far more effective after 24 weeks, cutting patients’ LDL cholesterol by an average of 52.8 percent, compared with 16.7 percent for the other drug.
PCSK9 inhibitors, she added, are “going to be, possibly, an option for patients who are statin-intolerant.” But that may not happen for a while. In addition to requiring FDA approval, the drugs are much more expensive — from $10,000 to $15,000 a year. And because evidence of statin intolerance is largely subjective, insurance companies may balk until there are ways to more conclusively prove that patients are unable to take the cheaper drugs.
The true secret to remaining youthful has been right under our nose the whole time - exercise. Scientists say it is 'superb' fitness that keeps people young. Experts from University of Guelph, in Canada, revealed elderly people who were elite athletes in their youth – or later in life – have much ‘younger muscles.’ ...Their legs were 25% stronger and had 14% more muscle mass
The Amazing Links Between Exercise & Anti-Aging from Yahoo Beauty
Aside from the obvious perks (better mood, weight loss, toned muscles), recent studies indicate a direct link between your skin’s ability to stay young-looking and your exercise schedule. Here, we pulled together five ways your skin’s health is linked to exercise....
1. Sweat Is Antibacterial....recent studies have shown that perspiration contains a natural antibiotic known as Dermcidin, which kills E. coli and Staphylococcus aureus.
Dear Ma and Pa:
I am well. Hope you are. Tell Brother Walt and Brother Elmer the Marine Corps beats working for old man Minch by a mile. Tell them to join up quick before all of the places are filled.
I was restless at first because you get to stay in bed till nearly 6 a.m. But I am getting so I like to sleep late. Tell Walt and Elmer all you do before breakfast is smooth your cot, and shine some things. No hogs to slop, feed to pitch, mash to mix, wood to split, fire to lay. Practically nothing.
Men got to shave but it is not so bad, there’s warm water. Breakfast is strong on trimmings like fruit juice, cereal, eggs, bacon, etc., but kind of weak on chops, potatoes, ham, steak, fried eggplant, pie and other regular food, but tell Walt and Elmer you can always sit by the two city boys that live on coffee. Their food, plus yours, holds you until noon when you get fed again. It’s no wonder these city boys can’t walk much.
We go on “route marches,” which the platoon sergeant says are long walks to harden us. If he thinks so, it’s not my place to tell him different. A “route march” is about as far as to our mailbox at home. Then the city guys get sore feet and we all ride back in trucks......
My favorite contemporary artist Natural sculptures by Andy Goldsworthy.
"Andy Goldsworthy is an extraordinary, innovative British artist whose collaborations with nature produce uniquely personal and intense artworks. Using a seemingly endless range of natural materials—snow, ice, leaves, bark, rock, clay, stones, feathers petals, twigs—he creates outdoor sculpture that manifests, however fleeting, a sympathetic contact with the natural world. Before they disappear, or as they disappear, Goldsworthy, records his work in superb color photographs."
The L.L. Bean boot factory in Brunswick is a thrumming hippodrome the size of an airplane hangar, a place filled with the clatter and hum of machinery, the metallic music of cutting, fitting, skiving, stitching, and brushing. The scent of solvent and leather hangs thickly; light flows through a filmy window. It could be any factory, anywhere, except no: It's an American factory making an American product entirely out of American materials, a rare trifecta in this era of offshore, chockablock manufacturing. Even more remarkable, the product—a century-old hunting boot known by its odd hybrid of soft leather uppers married to waterproof rubber bottoms—is the cornerstone of a $1.6 billion mail-order empire with a hearty American legend of its own. Each boot takes about forty-five minutes to make—and, given the whimsies of demand and supply, customers seem to wait with the same bated breath, react with the same delight, when they finally get their hands on a pair.
Beautiful Existence - who changed her name from Desiree Longabaugh - from Seattle, 42 years old, spent $7000 so she could go to Paris and marry herself under the Eiffel Tower
The mother-of-two said, 'It was hugely emotional. 'Looking at myself on that screen as I Skyped the officiant, saying exactly what I wanted to say to myself was soul-shifting.