Magnify

Antibiotics Prove Powerless as Super-Germs Spread

© Der Spiegel
An image of a strain of a Staphylococcus aureaus bacteria: Researchers around the world are growing increasingly worried about news strains of bacteria that are resistant to most common antibiotics.
Antibiotics were once the wonder drug. Now, however, an increasing number of highly resistant - and deadly - bacteria are spreading around the world. The killer bugs often originate in factory farms, where animals are treated whether they are sick or not.

The pathogens thrive in warm, moist environments. They feel comfortable in people's armpits, in the genital area and in the nasal mucous membranes. Their hunting grounds are in the locker rooms of schools and universities, as well as in the communal showers of prisons and health clubs.

The bacteria are transmitted via the skin, through towels, clothing or direct body contact. All it takes is a small abrasion to provide them with access to a victim's bloodstream. Festering pustules develop at the infection site, at which point the pathogens are also capable of corroding the lungs. If doctors wait too long, patients can die very quickly.
USA

World Gone Mad! British pair arrested in U.S. on terror charges over Twitter jokes


Leigh Van Bryan was due to go to Los Angeles with his friend Emily Banting but was stopped when he arrived in the U.S. over tweets he had sent.
Two British tourists were barred from entering America after joking on Twitter that they were going to 'destroy America' and 'dig up Marilyn Monroe'.

Leigh Van Bryan, 26, was handcuffed and kept under armed guard in a cell with Mexican drug dealers for 12 hours after landing in Los Angeles with pal Emily Bunting.

The Department of Homeland Security flagged him as a potential threat when he posted an excited tweet to his pals about his forthcoming trip to Hollywood which read: 'Free this week, for quick gossip/prep before I go and destroy America?'

After making their way through passport control at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) last Monday afternoon the pair were detained by armed guards.

Despite telling officials the term 'destroy' was British slang for 'party', they were held on suspicion of planning to 'commit crimes' and had their passports confiscated.

Comment: This situation is a good reminder of a quote from Andrew Lobaczewski's book Political Ponerology which addresses hysterisation in society that opens the door to totalitarianism in one form or another:
The traditional interpretation of these great historical diseases [of Pathocracy] has already taught historians to distinguish two phases. The first is represented by a period of spiritual crisis in a society, which historiography associates with exhausting of the ideational, moral, and religious values heretofore nourishing the society in question. Egoism among individuals and social groups increases, and the links of moral duty and social networks are felt to be loosening. Trifling matters thereupon dominate human minds to such an extent that there is no room left for thinking about public matters or a feeling of commitment to the future. An atrophy of the hierarchy of values within the thinking of individuals and societies is an indication thereof; it has been described both in historiographic monographs and in psychiatric papers. The country's government is finally paralyzed, helpless in the face of problems which could be solved without great difficulty under other circumstances. Let us associate such periods of crisis with the familiar phase in social hysterization. [...]

States of Societal Hysterization

When perusing scientific or literary descriptions of hysterical phenomena, such as those dating from the last great increase in hysteria in Europe encompassing the quarter-century preceding World War I, a non-specialist may gain the impression that this was endemic to individual cases, particularly among woman. The contagious nature of hysterical states, however, had already been discovered and described by Jean-Martin Charcot .

It is practically impossible for hysteria to manifest itself as a mere individual phenomenon, since it is contagious by means of psychological resonance, identification, and imitation. Each human being has a predisposition for this malformation of the personality, albeit to varying degrees, although it is normally overcome by rearing and self-rearing, which are amenable to correct thinking and emotional self-discipline.

During "happy times" of peace dependent upon social injustice, children of the privileged classes learn to repress from their field of consciousness the uncomfortable ideas suggesting that they and their parents are benefitting from injustice against others. Such young people learn to disqualify disparage the moral and mental values of anyone whose work they are using to over-advantage. Young minds thus ingest habits of subconscious selection and substitution of data, which leads to a hysterical conversion economy of reasoning. They grow up to be somewhat hysterical adults who, by means of the ways adduced above, thereupon transmit their hysteria to the next generation, which then develops these characteristics to an even greater degree.

The hysterical patterns for experience and behavior grow and spread downwards from the privileged classes until crossing the boundary of the first criterion of ponerology: the atrophy of natural critical faculties with respect to pathological individuals.

When the habits of subconscious selection and substitution of thought-data spread to the macrosocial level, a society tends to develop contempt for factual criticism and to humiliate anyone sounding an alarm. Contempt is also shown for other nations which have maintained normal thought-patterns and for their opinions. Egotistic thought-terrorization is accomplished by the society itself and its processes of conversive thinking. This obviates the need for censorship of the press, theater, or broadcasting, as a pathologically hypersensitive censor lives within the citizens themselves.

When three "egos" govern, egoism, egotism, and egocentrism, the feeling of social links and responsibility toward others disappear, and the society in question splinters into groups ever more hostile to each other.

When a hysterical environment stops differentiating the opinions of limited, not-quite-normal people from those of normal, reasonable persons, this opens the door for activation of the pathological factors of a various nature to enter in.

Individuals we have already met [psychological deviants such as psychopaths, schizoids, characteropaths, etc] who are governed by a pathological view of reality and abnormal goals caused by their different nature are able to develop their activities in such conditions. If a given society does not manage to overcome the state of hysterization under its ethnological and political circumstances, a huge bloody tragedy can be the result. ...
For more information on ponerology - the science of evil, see these Sott links:

Political Ponerology: A Science of Evil Applied for Political Purposes

Political Ponerology: A Science on The Nature of Evil adjusted for Political Purposes

Igloo

Forget Global Warming - It's Cycle 25 We Need to Worry About

The supposed 'consensus' on man-made global warming is facing an inconvenient challenge after the release of new temperature data showing the planet has not warmed for the past 15 years.

The figures suggest that we could even be heading for a mini ice age to rival the 70-year temperature drop that saw frost fairs held on the Thames in the 17th Century.

Based on readings from more than 30,000 measuring stations, the data was issued last week without fanfare by the Met Office and the University of East Anglia Climatic Research Unit. It confirms that the rising trend in world temperatures ended in 1997.

UK Mini Ice Age
© Mail on Sunday
A painting, dated 1684, by Abraham Hondius depicts one of many frost fairs on the River Thames during the mini ice age.
Meanwhile, leading climate scientists yesterday told The Mail on Sunday that, after emitting unusually high levels of energy throughout the 20th Century, the sun is now heading towards a 'grand minimum' in its output, threatening cold summers, bitter winters and a shortening of the season available for growing food.

Solar output goes through 11-year cycles, with high numbers of sunspots seen at their peak.

We are now at what should be the peak of what scientists call 'Cycle 24' - which is why last week's solar storm resulted in sightings of the aurora borealis further south than usual. But sunspot numbers are running at less than half those seen during cycle peaks in the 20th Century.

Analysis by experts at NASA and the University of Arizona - derived from magnetic-field measurements 120,000 miles beneath the sun's surface - suggest that Cycle 25, whose peak is due in 2022, will be a great deal weaker still.
Chalkboard

Low IQ & Conservative Beliefs Linked to Prejudice

race face-off
© ArTono, Shutterstock
There's no gentle way to put it: People who give in to racism and prejudice may simply be dumb, according to a new study that is bound to stir public controversy.

The research finds that children with low intelligence are more likely to hold prejudiced attitudes as adults. These findings point to a vicious cycle, according to lead researcher Gordon Hodson, a psychologist at Brock University in Ontario. Low-intelligence adults tend to gravitate toward socially conservative ideologies, the study found. Those ideologies, in turn, stress hierarchy and resistance to change, attitudes that can contribute to prejudice, Hodson wrote in an email to LiveScience.

"Prejudice is extremely complex and multifaceted, making it critical that any factors contributing to bias are uncovered and understood," he said.

Controversy ahead

The findings combine three hot-button topics.

Comment: What the study fails to mention is the vulnerability of low IQ individuals to the manipulations of pathological individuals in power. Obviously, these people do not come by their beliefs out of thin air. Their conservatism tends to make them gravitate to what is promoted by those in authority and it is to those quarters that we need to look for the pathology of Xenophobia.

Brick Wall

Censored and Banned by Court! Dark Ages and Abuse of Children: "The Wall", A Documentary About Autism in France

The Regional Court of Lille released its verdict yesterday Thursday Jan. 26, 2012 under an emergency ruling.

The Wall is censored and banned. The court has ordered Sophie Robert to remove the speech of the three plaintiffs from her movie. Furthermore, the court orders Sophie Robert to withdraw her movie from the internet. Otherwise she will have to pay 100 EUR per day to the plaintiffs.

Sophie Robert and her sole-proprietorship company "Océan Invisible Productions" are sentenced pay to at least 40 000 EUROS in damages and lawyers fees to the plaintiffs.

Sophie Robert has decided to appeal. Yet, she has to pay immediately the amount due.

Watch the documentary here
Nuke

Governments Worldwide Raise Acceptable Radiation Levels Based Upon Politics ... Not Science

radiation hazard sign
© n/a
Instead of Protecting People, Governments Cover Up by Raising "Safe" Radiation Levels

American and Canadian authorities have virtually stopped monitoring airborne radiation.

Neither American nor Canadian authorities are testing fish for radioactivity.

Does that mean that we don't have to worry about radiation from Fukushima?

It is a little hard to know, given that what is deemed a "safe level" of radiation is determined by politics ... rather than science. For example, current safety standards are based on the ridiculous assumption that everyone exposed is a healthy man in his 20s - and that radioactive particles ingested into the body cause no more damage than radiation hitting the outside of the body.
Bizarro Earth

Biofuels pollute more than oil, leaked data show

Greenhouse gas emissions from biofuels such as palm oil, soybean and rapeseed are higher than those for fossil fuels when the effects of Indirect Land Use Change (ILUC) are counted, according to leaked EU data seen by EurActiv.

The default values assigned to the biofuels compare to those from Canada's oil sands - also known as tar sands - according to the figures, which should be released along with long-awaited legislative proposals on biofuels in the spring.

A spokesperson for the European Commission said she could "not comment on leaked documents, such as impact assessments which have not been published."

But industry and civil society sources described the data as credible and in line with other studies. One said it would sound a death knell for the biodiesel industry, if published.

"I think the science has proved clearly that because of the link to deforestation in places such as South East Asia, a lot of the biodiesels have significantly negative impacts on the climate," Robbie Blake, a spokesman for Friends of the Earth, told EurActiv.

Comment: So the net effect is that the 'green measures' put into place to 'save the planet' will cost us more and speed up destruction of the planet.

Family

US: New Hampshire Republicans Propose Bills That Prevent Police From Protecting Domestic Abuse Victims

© ThinkProgress
Since the 1970s, New Hampshire police have operated under a progressive policy for handling domestic violence cases that has saved countless lives. Under current law the presumption is that an arrest will be made when police observe evidence of abuse. They have a large degree of discretion and don't need to witness the assault firsthand or obtain a legal warrant before they can separate the alleged attacker from his victim.

All that will change if Republicans get their way. The state's GOP legislators are pushing two bills that will reverse a half century of progress, the Concord Monitor reports:
Attention

Monsanto: 'There is no need for, or value in testing the safety of GM foods in humans'

© rawsangha.com
There is a growing body of scientific evidence which proves that genetically-modified organisms (GMOs) are inherently different from natural organisms, including the way the body processes them, as well as how the immune system responds to them. But Monsanto, the largest purveyor of GMOs in the world, believes that GMOs are no different than natural organisms, and that GMO testing is both needless and valueless.

In the Why aren't you running human clinical trials on GM crops? section of Monsanto's Food Safety page, the biotechnology giant explains its opinion that GMOs are "substantially equivalent" to natural organisms. According to Monsanto, since concentrations of proteins, carbohydrates, and other nutrient factors vary among natural crops, as well as among natural and GM crops, then these differences are automatically unimportant in light of GMO safety.


Comment: And what exactly is the definition of "substantially equivalent"?:

Substantial equivalence - anything but equivalent or substantial
Substantial equivalence. When looking at these two words many come away with the impression that they signify fairness, safety and adequate disclosure to consumers regarding the products those words are attached to. However, regarding the marketing of transgenic foods specifically genetically modified organisms in our food that is anything but the case. I think it is crucial that consumers are aware of what is in their food and how it may affect them and their children in order for them to be able to make informed decisions about what goes into their bodies.

This is the standard definition of "substantial equivalence":
"Substantial equivalence is a concept developed by OECD in 1991 that maintains that a novel food should be considered the same as a conventional food if it demonstrates the same characteristics and composition as the conventional food."
This concept was pushed in regards to GMOs by the FAO and the WHO in the early 1990s. Its intent was the stripping away of years of testing of so called "novel" foods which can be prohibitively expensive and time consuming and therefore would have affected the profits of companies like Monsanto that have a virtual stranglehold on the FDA, USDA, and other regulatory agencies and governments that have afforded them special treatment in allowing them to use this planet and its species as one huge science experiment. The residual effects of applying these two words to GMOs and in allowing them to be foisted upon the world with little to no adequate testing already negates the validity of applying the substantial equivalence label to them.
Bad Guys

Obama's "State of Delusion Address": Rebuilding America With War Crimes

king Obama
© n/a
From beginning to end, Barack Obama's State of the Union speech was replete with delusion and falsifications. His promise of building an "America that lasts" was predicated on a sentimental, but utterly disingenuous notion of selfless teamwork. The invocation of American military "heroes" and their "achievements" during nine years of waging war on Iraq as an exemplar of how to salvage his nation from economic and social catastrophe was both sickening and laughable.

"These achievements are a testament to the courage, selflessness and teamwork of America's Armed Forces. At a time when too many of our institutions have let us down, they exceed all expectations," said Obama in praise of US troops fresh from their destruction in Iraq.

If that's what Obama and the American people believe will resolve the deep-seated problems of American society then good luck to them in harbouring such crass delusions.

But what is sickening is how a truly gargantuan criminal war and blot on humanity is deified as a paragon of virtue to provide inspiration.
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