Friday, July 26, 2013

Joining the Dots

Joining the Dots: The EU is designed to protect patents and corporate control – not the health and interests of its citizens | EU Referendum Initiative |
The European Commission's Directorate General for Health and Consumers claims that its job is to "help make Europe's citizens healthier, safer and more confident." In reality however, and as more and more people are beginning to discover, the European Union's primary concerns are not those of ordinary citizens but rather the interests of multi-billion euro European corporations and their patents on health-endangering products such as GMO seeds, pharmaceutical drugs, artificial food additives and pesticides.

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Appendix Isn't Useless at All

Appendix Isn't Useless at All: It's a Safe House for Bacteria -

DURHAM, NC -- Long denigrated as vestigial or useless, the appendix now appears to have a reason to be -- as a "safe house" for the beneficial bacteria living in the human gut.

Drawing upon a series of observations and experiments, Duke University Medical Center investigators postulate that the beneficial bacteria in the appendix that aid digestion can ride out a bout of diarrhea that completely evacuates the intestines and emerge afterward to repopulate the gut. Their theory appears online in the Journal of Theoretical Biology.

"While there is no smoking gun, the abundance of circumstantial evidence makes a strong case for the role of the appendix as a place where the good bacteria can live safe and undisturbed until they are needed," said William Parker, PhD, assistant professor of experimental surgery, who conducted the analysis in collaboration with R. Randal Bollinger, MD, PhD, Duke professor emeritus in general surgery.

The appendix is a slender two- to four-inch pouch located near the juncture of the large and small intestines. While its exact function in humans has been debated by physicians, it is known that there is immune system tissue in the appendix.

The gut is populated with different microbes that help the digestive system break down the foods we eat. In return, the gut provides nourishment and safety to the bacteria. Parker now believes that the immune system cells found in the appendix are there to protect, rather than harm, the good bacteria.

For the past ten years, Parker has been studying the interplay of these bacteria in the bowels, and in the process has documented the existence in the bowel of what is known as a biofilm. This thin and delicate layer is an amalgamation of microbes, mucous and immune system molecules living together atop of the lining the intestines.

"Our studies have indicated that the immune system protects and nourishes the colonies of microbes living in the biofilm," Parkers explained. "By protecting these good microbes, the harmful microbes have no place to locate. We have also shown that biofilms are most pronounced in the appendix and their prevalence decreases moving away from it."

This new function of the appendix might be envisioned if conditions in the absence of modern health care and sanitation are considered, Parker said.

"Diseases causing severe diarrhea are endemic in countries without modern health and sanitation practices, which often results in the entire contents of the bowels, including the biofilms, being flushed from the body," Parker said. He added that the appendix's location and position is such that it is expected to be relatively difficult for anything to enter it as the contents of the bowels are emptied.

"Once the bowel contents have left the body, the good bacteria hidden away in the appendix can emerge and repopulate the lining of the intestine before more harmful bacteria can take up residence," Parker continued. "In industrialized societies with modern medical care and sanitation practices, the maintenance of a reserve of beneficial bacteria may not be necessary. This is consistent with the observation that removing the appendix in modern societies has no discernable negative effects."

Several decades ago, scientists suggested that people in industrialized societies might have such a high rate of appendicitis because of the so-called "hygiene hypothesis," Parker said. This hypothesis posits that people in "hygienic" societies have higher rates of allergy and perhaps autoimmune disease because they -- and hence their immune systems -- have not been as challenged during everyday life by the host of parasites or other disease-causing organisms commonly found in the environment. So when these immune systems are challenged, they can over-react.

"This over-reactive immune system may lead to the inflammation associated with appendicitis and could lead to the obstruction of the intestines that causes acute appendicitis," Parker said. "Thus, our modern health care and sanitation practices may account not only for the lack of a need for an appendix in our society, but also for much of the problems caused by the appendix in our society."

Parker conducted a deductive study because direct examination the appendix's function would be difficult. Other than humans, the only mammals known to have appendices are rabbits, opossums and wombats, and their appendices are markedly different than the human appendix.

Parker's overall research into the existence and function of biofilms is supported by the National Institutes of Health. Other Duke members of the team were Andrew Barbas, Errol Bush, and Shu Lin.

Monday, July 22, 2013
Of particular interest were scientists specialising in aerodynamics and rocketry (such as those involved in the V-1 and V-2 projects), chemical weapons, chemical reaction technology and medicine. These scientists and their families were secretly brought to the United States, without State Department review and approval. The majority of the scientists, numbering almost 500, were deployed at White Sands Proving Ground, New Mexico, Fort Bliss, Texas and Huntsville, Alabama to work on guided missile and ballistic missile technology. This in turn led to the foundation of NASA and the US ICBM program

Thoughts on the intersection of search, media, technology, and more.

John Battelle's Search Blog | Thoughts on the intersection of search, media, technology, and more.
It’s been pretty obvious from the stock price, but LinkedIn, which I’ve written about every so often, is really on a roll lately. The influencer content play (which I will admit I’ve been part of, in a small way) is a clear winner, the company is enjoying very positive press, and its premium services are getting really interesting as well.

Just today I got an email from the company titled “What’s new with people you know?” I found it compelling in a way that emails from nearly every other service I use – Twitter, Facebook, or Google – are not.  CEO Jeff Weiner tells me that this email has been sent out every six months for the past three years, but it’s clearly been redesigned as more of a media product. I care about my network on LinkedIn, and the email was full of pictures of people who really matter to me, all of whom have gotten new jobs.  It’s  one of the most engaging messages I’ve ever gotten from a “social network.” (In case you want some history, I called LinkedIn out as a media company more than a year ago  here.)

KK* Lifestream

Kevin Kelly -- KK* Lifestream
The farmers in rural China have chosen cell phones and twitter over toilets and running water. To them, this is not a hypothetical choice at all, but a real one. and they have made their decision in massive numbers. Tens of millions, maybe hundreds of millions, if not billions of people in the rest of Asia, Africa and South America have chosen Option B. You can go to almost any African village to see this. And it is not because they are too poor to afford a toilet. As you can see from these farmers' homes in Yunnan, they definitely could have at least built an outhouse if they found it valuable. (I know they don't have a toilet because I've stayed in many of their homes.) But instead they found the intangible benefits of connection to be greater than the physical comforts of running water.

Quick Service Restaurant News, Trends and Insight

QSR Web - Quick Service Restaurant News, Trends and Insights |
Since 1997, has reported on the important news, events, trends and people in the estimated $142.5 billion quick-service restaurant-industry segment. We reach a global audience of industry professionals looking to track the latest food and beverage trends, top markets for growth and the latest marketing campaigns. Our site features a directory of product and service providers as well as slide shows, videos and research.

About Us - Brickwork India

About Us - Brickwork India

Brickwork India pioneered the concept of Remote Executive Assistant (REA) in early 2004. The idea was to make the benefits of outsourcing available to individuals and small to mid-sized companies, by providing simple to complex business assistance, at an affordable price. This concept found instant worldwide recognition and media attention, including the New York Times best seller ‘The World is Flat’ by Thomas Friedman. This was followed by a several news magazines and TV shows as well as Tim Ferris’s best-seller ‘The 4 Hour Workweek’, which described how Brickwork helps busy professionals reduce their workload.

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Pushing Back Against Corporate "Counterfeit Science"

Got Science? July 2013 | Union of Concerned Scientists

They funneled money through front groups, planted third-party articles and op-eds. They even hired a detective agency to investigate scientists on a federal advisory panel to try to stave off potential EPA regulation.
The documents also show that Syngenta targeted at least one scientist directly. Dr. Tyrone Hayes, a biologist at the University of California, Berkeley demonstrated a decade ago that atrazine could turn male frogs female, publishing his results in prestigious journals such as  Nature and the  Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Hayes has remained a prominent, vocal critic of atrazine ever since.
In an effort to try to undermine Hayes’s research, Syngenta hired an investigator to dig up dirt on both Hayes and his wife, commissioned a psychological profile of him, and even planted trained critics in the audience at his speaking events.
We’ve seen this movie before—most recently in  disinformation campaigns by oil and gas companies like ExxonMobil that try to undermine climate science and, before that, by Big Tobacco to disseminate disinformation about the health effects of smoking. Syngenta’s disinformation campaign about the safety of atrazine didn’t just draw directly from the playbook used by Big Carbon and Big Tobacco, however. They even used some of the same personnel. For instance, Syngenta hired  Steven J. Milloy, a Fox News columnist and blogger, to spout misinformation about atrazine. In the past, Milloy has made similar arrangements with oil and gas companies to misinform about climate science; he previously worked for Phillip Morris, distorting the scientific evidence about the hazards of cigarettes and second-hand smoke.

Perhaps these latest revelations will build enough momentum to revisit this pernicious scourge and prosecute deliberate counterfeit science as fraud. Dr. Andrew Rosenberg, director of the Center for Science and Democracy at the Union of Concerned Scientists, is helping to  put the issue of counterfeit science on the map. The  Center for Science and Democracy is actively working to strengthen safeguards to ensure that solid, independent evidence informs our policymaking.

As Rosenberg rightly puts it, “Actions like those revealed in the Georgia Pacific and Syngenta cases go against all my teaching and experience as a scientist. They not only undermine the scientific enterprise, they pose an enormous potential threat to the public. That’s why we need all parties involved to develop and enforce safeguards to prevent counterfeit science.”

Thursday, July 04, 2013

Margo Wootan ~ Center for Science in the Public Interest

Margo Wootan ~ Center for Science in the Public Interest
Dr. Wootan led the successful effort to require trans fat labeling on packaged foods, which significantly contributed to the 50% decline in trans fat consumption in the U.S. She led the effort to pass federal legislation to require calorie labeling in fast-food and other chain restaurants. Wootan coordinated efforts to pass the Healthy, Hunger-free Kids Act, including the law to set national nutrition standards for foods sold through vending machines, a la carte, school stores, and fundraisers at schools. She works on expanding nutrition and physical activity promotion and funding and reducing unhealthy food marketing aimed at children. Wootan developed and ran CSPI's award-winning 1% Or Less campaign, a community-based nutrition promotion program.

Wednesday, July 03, 2013

Top 12 Right-to-Know Grocers · Organic Retail and Consumer Alliance

Top 12 Right-to-Know Grocers · Organic Retail and Consumer Alliance:
It was a challenge to single out only 12 overall winners, when all 50 regional winners have such impressive policies and practices for educating customers about GMOs and providing non-GMO alternatives. The “Diligent Dozen” winning stores are those grocers who are leading the natural food industry by working with manufacturers and local producers to transition to non-GMO ingredients and by advocating for GMO labeling.
  • Berkshire Organics Market & Deli, Dalton, MAStore LogoBerkshire Organics stocks roughly 3,000 mainly local and organic grocery items. The store requires signed affidavits verifying that manufactured product, ingredients, and feed used by livestock farmers are GMO-free. Store staff visit sustainable farms to verify acceptable farming practices.
  • Dad’s Organic Market, Saskatoon, SKStore LogoDad’s Organic Market created a No GMO policy one year ago, and communicates that policy to manufacturers and vendors. Dad’s requires GMO-free statements on manufacturers’ letterhead before the store will purchase products containing suspect ingredients. Buyers always push manufacturers to remove GMO ingredients from their products.
  • Good Earth Natural Foods, Fairfax, CAStore LogoGood Earth Natural Foods is a Non-GMO Project supporting retailer. The store donated $25,000 to Prop 37, the largest donation of any grocer in the country.
  • Jimbo’s…Naturally! San Diego, CAStore LogoJimbo’s Naturally is one of the country’s pioneer GMO-Free grocer activists and organic advocates. The company has persuaded a number of manufacturers to remove suspect products from their foods, resulting in those companies either going organic or pursuing Non-GMO Project verification. Jimbo’s Naturally donated $10,000 to support Prop 37.
  • MOM’s Organic Market, Baltimore, MD & Washington, DCStore LogoIn July 2012, MOM’s began informing suppliers that they would no longer accept foods with high-risk GMO ingredients, and that products with ingredients that may contain GMOs had to be either certified organic or Non-GMO Project verified. MOM’s contributed $10,000 to Prop 37, and $5,000 to Yes on 522.
  • Native Sun Natural Foods Market, Jacksonville, FLStore LogoNative Sun has five staff members dedicated to product research, who meet regularly to review new products and analyze the ingredients for possible GMOs. Researchers discuss inert ingredients and their sources, and keep an updated handbook listing ingredients that are allowed and those that are banned.
  • Natural Grocery Company, El Cerrito & Berkeley, CAStore LogoThe store established a policy about four years ago requiring buyers to inform manufacturers and vendors that they will purchase only organic products, except in cases where organic alternatives are not available. However, all non-organic products must be GMO-free and verified by the Non-GMO Project. The company donated over $3,200 to support Prop 37.
  • Nature’s Food Patch Market & Cafe, Clearwater, FLStore LogoAll products suspected of containing GMO ingredients are labeled with GMO tags. In addition to product tags, Nature’s Food Patch educates consumers and alerts them to GMOs via email updates, Facebook and the store’s website. The store also provides non-GMO pamphlets and packets of GMO information for customers who ask about GMOs.
  • Ocean Beach People’s Organic Food Co-Op, San Diego, CAStore LogoManufacturers are informed that all products purchased by the co-op need to be either organic or have an affidavit certifying that products are GMO-free. Products containing GMO ingredients are removed from the store. Products are either labeled organic, Non-GMO Project verified or have an affidavit certifying the product is GMO-free. Ocean Beach Peoples Organic Food Market donated $5,000 to support Prop 37, the California initiative to label GMOs.
  • Sundance Natural Foods, Eugene, ORStore LogoSundance practices and promotes the ethos of ‘Gatekeeping,’ believing that we hold a moral and practical duty to educate our community about all issues surrounding the responsible production and sustenance of local, national and global food markets and agriculture, and to protect our food supply from those who would compromise and destroy it for profit.
  • Terra Organica, Bellingham, WAStore LogoTerra Organica is still refining its GMO tagging system. The store surveyed its customers about how to handle products that may contain GMOs, asking them which they preferred: No labels, label GMOs, or get rid of all GMO items. Customers overwhelmingly chose labels, which began appearing on Terra Organica’s shelves in March.
  • The Sunspot Natural Market, Kokomo, INStore LogoThe store contacts manufacturers who claim that their products are GMO-free, but do not have non GMO Project verification. Strong relationships have been built with brokers, reps and manufacturers to make sure that GMO products do not enter their store. Thousands of homemade shelf talkers pointing out non-GMO verified products are on display throughout the store.

Tuesday, July 02, 2013

Fw: Read. Weep. Print. Share.

This should be on the front page of every newspaper.

Charley Reese's Final column!

A very interesting column… COMPLETELY NEUTRAL… 
Be sure to Read the Poem at the end.

Charley Reese's final column for the Orlando Sentinel... He has been a journalist for 49 years. He is retiring and this is HIS LAST COLUMN.

Be sure to read the Tax List at the end.

This is about as clear and easy to understand as it can be. The article below is completely neutral, neither anti-republican or democrat. Charlie Reese, a retired reporter for the Orlando Sentinel, has hit the nail directly on the head, defining clearly who it is that in the final analysis must assume responsibility for the judgments made that impact each one of us every day. It's a short but good read. Worth the time. Worth remembering!

545 vs. 300,000,000 People
-By Charlie Reese

Politicians are the only people in the world who create problems and then campaign against them.

Have you ever wondered, if both the Democrats and the Republicans are against deficits, WHY do we have deficits?

Have you ever wondered, if all the politicians are against inflation and high taxes, WHY do we have inflation and high taxes?

You and I don't propose a federal budget. The President does.

You and I don't have the Constitutional authority to vote on appropriations. The House of Representatives does.

You and I don't write the tax code, Congress does.

You and I don't set fiscal policy, Congress does.

You and I don't control monetary policy, the Federal Reserve Bank does.

One hundred senators, 435 congressmen, one President, and nine Supreme Court justices equates to 545 human beings out of the 300 million are directly, legally, morally, and individually responsible for the domestic problems that plague this country.

I excluded the members of the Federal Reserve Board because that problem was created by the Congress. In 1913, Congress delegated its Constitutional duty to provide a sound currency to a federally chartered, but private, central bank.

I excluded all the special interests and lobbyists for a sound reason. They have no legal authority. They have no ability to coerce a senator, a congressman, or a President to do one cotton-picking thing. I don't care if they offer a politician $1 million dollars in cash. The politician has the power to accept or reject it. No matter what the lobbyist promises, it is the legislator's responsibility to determine how he votes.

Those 545 human beings spend much of their energy convincing you that what they did is not their fault. They cooperate in this common con regardless of party.

What separates a politician from a normal human being is an excessive amount of gall. No normal human being would have the gall of a Speaker, who stood up and criticized the President for creating deficits. The President can only propose a budget. He cannot force the Congress to accept it.

The Constitution, which is the supreme law of the land, gives sole responsibility to the House of Representatives for originating and approving appropriations and taxes. Who is the speaker of the House? John Boehner. He is the leader of the majority party. He and fellow House members, not the President, can approve any budget they want. If the President vetoes it, they can pass it over his veto if they agree to. [The House has passes a budget but the Senate has not approved a budget in over three years. The President's proposed budgets have gotten almost unanimous rejections in the Senate in that time. ]

It seems inconceivable to me that a nation of 300 million cannot replace 545 people who stand convicted -- by present facts -- of incompetence and irresponsibility. I can't think of a single domestic problem that is not traceable directly to those 545 people. When you fully grasp the plain truth that 545 people exercise the power of the federal government, then it must follow that what exists is what they want to exist.

If the tax code is unfair, it's because they want it unfair.

If the budget is in the red, it's because they want it in the red.

If the Army & Marines are in Iraq and Afghanistan it's because they want them in Iraq and Afghanistan ...

If they do not receive social security but are on an elite retirement plan not available to the people, it's because they want it that way.

There are no insoluble government problems.

Do not let these 545 people shift the blame to bureaucrats, whom they hire and whose jobs they can abolish; to lobbyists, whose gifts and advice they can reject; to regulators, to whom they give the power to regulate and from whom they can take this power. 

Above all, do not let them con you into the belief that there exists disembodied mystical forces like "the economy," "inflation," or "politics" that prevent them from doing what they take an oath to do.

Those 545 people, and they alone, are responsible. They, and they alone, have the power.

They, and they alone, should be held accountable by the people who are their bosses. Provided the voters have the gumption to manage their own employees... We should vote all of them out of office and clean up their mess!

Charlie Reese is a former columnist of the Orlando Sentinel Newspaper.

What you do with this article now that you have read it... is up to you.
This might be funny if it weren't so true. 

Be sure to read all the way to the end:

Tax his land,
Tax his bed,
Tax the table,
At which he's fed.

Tax his tractor,
Tax his mule,
Teach him taxes
Are the rule.

Tax his work,
Tax his pay,
He works for
peanuts anyway!

Tax his cow,
Tax his goat,
Tax his pants,
Tax his coat.

Tax his ties,
Tax his shirt,
Tax his work,
Tax his dirt.

Tax his tobacco,
Tax his drink,
Tax him if he
Tries to think.

Tax his cigars,
Tax his beers,
If he cries
Tax his tears.

Tax his car,
Tax his gas,
Find other ways
To tax his ass.

Tax all he has
Then let him know
That you won't be done
Till he has no dough.

When he screams and hollers;
Then tax him some more,
Tax him till
He's good and sore.

Then tax his coffin,
Tax his grave,
Tax the sod in
Which he's laid...

Put these words
Upon his tomb,
'Taxes drove me
to my doom...'

When he's gone,
Do not relax,
Its time to apply
The inheritance tax. 

Accounts Receivable Tax
Building Permit Tax
CDL license Tax
Cigarette Tax
Corporate Income Tax
Dog License Tax
Excise Taxes
Federal Income Tax
Federal Unemployment Tax (FUTA)
Fishing License Tax
Food License Tax
Fuel Permit Tax
Gasoline Tax (currently 44.75 cents per gallon)
Gross Receipts Tax
Hunting License Tax
Inheritance Tax
Inventory Tax
IRS Interest Charges IRS Penalties (tax on top of tax)
Liquor Tax
Luxury Taxes
Marriage License Tax
Medicare Tax
Personal Property Tax
Property Tax
Real Estate Tax
Service Charge Tax
Social Security Tax
Road Usage Tax
Recreational Vehicle Tax
Sales Tax
School Tax
State Income Tax
State Unemployment Tax (SUTA)
Telephone Federal Excise Tax
Telephone Federal Universal Service Fee Tax
Telephone Federal, State and Local Surcharge Taxes
Telephone Minimum Usage Surcharge Tax
Telephone Recurring and Nonrecurring Charges Tax
Telephone State and Local Tax
Telephone Usage Charge Tax
Utility Taxes
Vehicle License Registration Tax
Vehicle Sales Tax
Watercraft Registration Tax
Well Permit Tax
Workers Compensation Tax


Not one of these taxes existed 100 years ago, & our nation was the most prosperous in the world. We had absolutely no national debt, had the largest middle class in the world, and Mom stayed home to raise the kids.

What in the heck happened? Can you spell 'politicians?'
I hope this goes around THE USA at least 545 times!!! YOU can help it get there!!!