Making Jewelry for
Breast Cancer Awareness
10% of all Purchases
go to help us.
Just make sure you tell her you heard about MRK Jewelry at
the (International) Wellness Directory.
Coleus Forskohlii Extract is a standardized
extract from the roots of the Coleus forskohlii plant, a
member of the mint family, native to India, but also found
in Sri Lanka, Thailand, and Nepal. Practitioners of
Ayurvedic medicine traditionally used the herb for promoting
cardiovascular health and weight management. A study
published in the Journal of Obesity Research reported that forskohlin promotes favorable changes in body composition by
increasing lean body mass and decreasing body fat
Every year, your government gives away
to the wealthy more than enough money to pay for health care
for every person who goes without it, and more, much much
more. Every American must read this book. David Kay Johnston
is a Pulitzer Prize winning investigative journalist.
Hostility, anger, and grumpiness are the essential
ingredients of a bad mood. Several studies have linked low
levels of selenium with tendencies towards anxiety and
irritability, so load up on this nutrient to shake your foul
mood. Sources: Sunflower seeds, whole grain cereals and
Brazil nuts. Combine sunflower seeds and Brazil nuts with
raisins and almonds for a mid-afternoon snack
Sent to me from a
I just finished a
psychology class and one of the things I learned is that
there are two kinds of people... rational thinkers and
emotional thinkers... skeptics and believers... democrats
and republicans... whatever you want to call them. The main
difference is that one will reassess their opinions when new
information is presented and revise their thinking. The
other will disregard any information that interferes with
their cognitions. They simply refuse to change their
minds. They'll listen to what confirms their biases and
disregard the rest. Conservatism truly is a mental
First off, here is a link that can all use to thank a
Click here: Let's Say Thanks.
Too many of our finest young men and women are not here
with us to celebrate the holidays. We need to let them
know we’re thinking of them. I know they’re thinking of
many of you know, I’ve been on the road for over a
month, taking photos, visiting friends and relatives,
and receiving an award for my photography at the
National VA Creative Arts Festival.
newsletter is here thanks to everyone who sent me
articles. You’ll not find much originally produced by
yours truly but you will find some good info, and lots and lots of Holiday
Future of this Newsletter
have a slight memory disorder that is beginning to
frustrate me. I write articles that I lose, then take a
few weeks to find again. I find articles that I store away and
then lose them too, only to find them while looking for
something else I've lost. I once wrote, or
thought I had written, a review of the book Painless
Cancer Cures that never made its way to this site, and
now I can’t find it and had to rewrite it.
have lost all my proofreaders. They get bored, I guess.
I’m spending much more time on my
photography hoping to get cash flow for this
in all, I’m not sure how much longer I can continue
writing a newsletter (which is very time consuming)
especially without help.
anyone out there is a web programmer, or a writer, or a
proofreader, you can really help make this job a lot easier. Yes, I’m
retired and I have the time to do most things I set out
to do, but other things are now taking my focus off the
work here. Oh, and boy am I in need of a volunteer who
many do not know is that some articles here have taken
up to 4, 5, or 6 years to research and write. For
example, I’m working on an article on Osteoporosis that
has taken over three years, and I’ve not even written
one word on it yet. Still doing the research.
I’m not sure about the future of this newsletter, but if
anyone wants to help/contribute, just write here:
Hey, Whatcha need?
This Will Be Our
God bless you Anthony Fucaloro
About 9 or 10
years ago, a man wrote to me that he'd been diagnosed
with cancer, and that his oncologist had told him that
they could extend his life maybe a year, a year and a
half, with chemotherapy. He was in his sixties and he was
not looking forward to the ordeal of chemotherapy and
its effects. He asked me a few questions about where to
As per usual,
I told him that I am not a doctor, but a journalist. I
cannot give recommendations, but I can tell him what I
would do were I in his shoes and pass onto him all that
I sent him a
few links to articles at this site. I heard back from him a few days later
telling me that my pages wouldn't print out. He did not
have a word processor (it's best to copy the text into a
word processor and go from there), so I put the pages
all together, created a PDF file, and emailed it to him.
He said thank
you, and that was the last I'd heard from him.
Until a few
weeks ago, that is. I got a call from his attorney. He's passed
away at age seventy four (outliving his oncologist's
prognosis by 8 or 9 years). They told me that he'd
remembered us in his will. That put a smile on my face.
We can always use a couple hundred dollars here.
received the check. It was made out for $10,000.00. I
was in shock. His attorney called us again to make sure
that we fill out all the forms and get them back as soon
as possible. She also told us that of all his charities,
ours was his favorite and that we'd gotten more than all
the rest. That made my millennium.
the check, my first thought was, Boy, we can get that
new camera now. But, sadly, I've actually matured in
this lifetime, and it will go to pay off our credit card
debt and take a chunk out of our legal costs (remember,
it cost us over 25K to battle a frivolous law suit).
us all the time how grateful they are for our site. We
get millions of hits every month now (according to one
of our sponsors who called me to say that they've always
wanted an affiliate partner with as much traffic as we
get and one
that's consistently at the top of search results).
many readers like our site, they tell me, is that we are
as objective as possible, and they realize that no one
here earns a dime (although I do get some great perks in
the form of products sent to me to review). They tell me
it's a bonus to find someone who's not in it for the
do have bills to pay.
is 80K in debt. The good news is that over 50K of that
is owed me (and a few silent partners). Yes, out of my
military entitlement checks, I've been paying the bills
for the past 18 years. We only owe our creditors some
30K, and now, after this wonderful gift, we'll owe much
less, and be able to purchase the special $1,100.00 DVD
that allows us to find practitioners for those who
modern medicine has given up on. (Find
in mind, to perform this service is expensive. We
received only $165.00 this year for this service, but
the DVD costs $1,100.00 each year. If we do not purchase
it just once, the price jumps to $1,900.00. So, we need
We ask you
all to purchase from our links on this site. Our
affiliate programs are our main source of income.
However, if you do NOT want to support us, you can
always circumvent our links and find the products on
One thing you
can be sure of: I personally use every product we link
to. I would never recommend anything that I've not
And if you
want to re-order, come back here, find the link and use
putting us in your will takes five minutes. Go here to
get our address: Who We Are; then
call your attorney and add us to your will. It's that
simple. Know that we will be paying off our bills long
after I'm gone.
will created a page full of our affiliate programs that
will allow you to simply go there and order whatever you
want whenever you want, and in doing so support this
site. But for now, just come back to the newsletter, or
article you've read, and keep ordering from there.
In animal studies,
grape seed polyphenols (OPC) protect against obesity and metabolic
syndrome (such as type two diabetes) even when the individual
is indulging in a high fat diet.
and studies show that 60-80% of people with cancer are
either interested in, or using, complementary and
alternative (CAM) approaches. And while the oncology
community response to patient interest is growing, it
continues to lag far behind the need.
Second Annual Evidence-based CAM for Cancer Advocates
Conference, sponsored by The Annie Appleseed Project,
brings together advocates from many communities, as well
as those with information on studies in CAM to
strategize, network, and more, that would greatly
benefit those with cancer.
This two and one-half-day education conference, held in
West Palm Beach, FL, will focus on a multi-disciplinary
approach, and will address issues such as nutrition,
dietary supplements, mind-body-spirit relaxation
techniques, exercise, hands-on therapies and much more.
many conference speakers include:
Ann E. Fonfa,
Patient Advocate, The Annie Appleseed Project
Keith Block, MD,
Integrative oncologist, Block Medical Center,
Patient Advocate, AMAZON Group and Breast
Cancer Choices 'Iodine Investigation Project
Ralph W. Moss,
author, editor of Cancer Decisions
Tina Kaczor, ND,
FABNO, President, Oncology Association of
B.F.R.P.The Sirkin Creative Living Center, LLC,Bach
Foundation Registered Practitioner,Quantum Emotional
Clearing Cert. Pract.
Georgia M. Decker,
APRN-BC, ANP, CN, AOCN
Susan J. Luck, RN,
MA, HNC, CCN, Director, Earthrose Institute for
Patient Advocate, Director, Cancer Survival Resource
Acupuncture Physician, with Julia Chiapetta, author
Carol A. Zarycki,
Advocate, Yoga, Chi Gong
Gwen Stritter, MD,
Clinical Patient Advocate
Penny Block, PhD,
Block Medical Center
have exhibit tables too, and a conference journal.
NURSES please note: Currently pending approval:
“Application for approval of continuing nursing
education contact hours has been submitted to the
American Holistic Nurses Association, an accredited
approver by the American Nurses Credentialing Center’s
Commission on Accreditation”
"Approval for contact hours through the AHNA is based on
an assessment of the educational merit of this program
and does not constitute endorsement of the use of any
specific modality in the care of clients."
DIETITIANS please note: Currently pending approval for
SOCIAL WORKERS please note: Currently pending approval.
are not free of controversy. Most feel that the Natural
Solutions Foundation is a “controlled opposition group”
in that they appear to be fighting for health freedom
when in fact, they are doing the opposite. I’ve read Dr
Rath’s take on this, and much more, and I have found the
Natural Solutions Foundation promulgating a lot of false
information, forcing me to remove an article from our
site that they had authored. However, I still get their
newsletters and pass them on, especially when they
supply a link to write to the FDA or our federal
Why? Because writing
the FDA, my senators, or my congressman about health
freedom concerns is never wrong.
I always try to
write my own letter rather than the prepared letters.
And I never include the name of the organization that
created the letter if it is already in their prepared
It is never wrong to
stand up for your rights and be heard.
After sending out
one letter from the Natural Solutions Foundation, I got
a letter back from the person who heads up the
International Advocates for Health Freedom telling me
that unless I called him (or checked out a few links
he’d sent me) concerning the NSF, “I won't have any
other choice than to dismiss you as a lightweight and a
nobody in this movement.” He went onto tell me that if I
did not call him, he would contact my internet provider
and have my account closed for spamming him (even though
he had requested to join my mailing list).
I could care less
what this man thinks of me. I wrote him back and told
him what he could do with his empty threats. That
evening he called me and told me that he’d gotten my
internet account cancelled. I laughed and hung up on
him. As you can guess, I’ve still got my internet
accounts. I’m never surprised by the size of anyone’s
overblown image of his own self importance.
in-fighting has to stop. All of these organizations
should just do their jobs and let the others do theirs.
If people support an organization that is out to
undermine the work of other similar organizations, it
doesn’t mean those people they support that agenda.
Besides, it’s been said, keep your friends close, and
your enemies closer.
As for the
individual heading up the IAHF, nothing I do, or anyone
does, will stop him from being petty. I cancelled his
newsletter a few years back because his writing is a
chore to read. Most of the time, he wasted his readers’
time by first issuing a slough of directionless
diatribes before actually getting to the point. I often
had to read that point a few times to actually figure
out that this was actually his point. His writing is
sometimes less cogent than our beloved President’s
explanation (at a town-hall meeting) of Medicare Part D.
He needs a proof reader who can write succinctly while
giving the reader clear instructions on what the reader
As long as the FDA
runs a protection racket that serves the industry they
are supposed to regulate, our health freedom will always
be under attack. None of the infighting, name calling,
and empty threats does anything to protect our freedoms.
So, what can you do?
Get on some mailing lists. Read up and keep current.
Then stand up and demand your rights and freedoms. Simply
ignore the BS. The truth will out.
Additionally, all ingredients are extracted or distilled according to Ron's instructions.
SugarFoot is the most healing moisturizer I've ever found. It can heal a painful crack your skin
over night. Surgical nurses, who wash their hands
continually during the day just love it.
on our Transatlantic Cruise last month, I got some
real rough places
on both my elbows. It thought to myself. I guess I
am getting Psoriasis from
eating so good on the cruise ship. I was actually
picking at the scales like
my friend with Psoriasis.
Well, I had the SugarFoot traveling samples you gave
me and I applied to
both my elbows and I would not have believed it had
I not have it happen to
me, but the roughness disappeared with one
application. I had tried to
scrub it off in the shower before and couldn't.
I know you would be proud of that.
Now--one application. Well it happened. If I get any
roughness again, I will
have to take a picture before and after. I just
didn't think it would work
with only one application.
Dr. Joe Reynolds
As for HealonPF™. We've discussed this product so much,
I'll just put a link here listing all the articles on
HealonPF™. Though I have found another use for it, if
you're interested. Interested?
product Ron Salley makes that Simply the Best does
is Advanced Skin Care or
ASC. I used it to clear up a
solar keratosis. I use it on any zit that pops up. It is
powerful stuff, everything dries up overnight. I even
gave away my little bottle while on the road. I’ve
received a bunch of letters from users. Only one person
found it did not work. A couple said it was just too
strong for their skin. The rest (over a dozen
testimonials) raved about it. Two people have told us
that it dries up a herpes sore overnight.
How much do I like
it? I have a bottle that would retail for $400.00. I
wash the affected area, shake the bottle well, put a
drop in one hand and apply lightly to the problem area.
Most of the time it's cleared up over night.
Or, you could
get something from a local (Minnesota) company,
Purple Prairie Botanicals. I found a rose skin cream
online and asked her if she had anything like it, only
with fewer toxins. She sent me some bottles of her
Carrot Rose Cream. I gave them to four women with
problem skin, and some crow’s feet. Within just days,
they contacted me telling me how great their skin felt,
how the wrinkles were beginning to vanish. All of her
products are natural, safe, and effective. She’s
advertising some Holiday Specials right now. And as
always, I urge you to support small businesses.
year at this time we presented you with a bunch of DVDs
from Amazon dot com. Since then, I’ve received a ton of
thank-yous from readers who purchased them. One bought
two four-set DVDs of Loony Toons Cartoons for their
kids, but wound up watching them together late at night
while the kids were in bed. These cartoons were not
written for kids. The extras are spectacular as you meet
all the geniuses behind the scenes: animators, writers,
directors, voice actors, and even some of the technical
Another wrote me that the Charlie Chaplin recommendation
was something they’d never expected, even telling me (I
already knew) that the Austin Powers series had lifted a
few ideas from one film, The Idle Class.
Instead of putting them all back in this newsletter,
here is a link:
Christmas Suggestions. And yes, you are supporting
us by purchasing through those links.
you're a regular here, you'll remember how the FDA
reported that the Tamaflu vaccine could be deadly.
today the news is this: They hardly protect you
against the flu, and do NOT protect you against
Current television ads tell us that the flu vaccine will
protect you against the flu and pneumonia. In a recent
cohort study (where patients are interviewed) at the
Group Health Center for Health Studies in Seattle, WA,
researches examined the effectiveness of the flu vaccine
in seniors. They compared medical records of those
treated (during the years 2000, 2001, and 2002) for
pneumonia with those who had received the flu shot.
findings were simple: the flu vaccine did not prevent
told the flu vaccine is harmless. I don’t believe it.
For those of you who want to beat the cold and flu
season naturally, boosting your immune systems
naturally, you should check out:
How to Beat the Cold
and Flu Season.
There is a
piece circulating the web, with no name attached, and
few references that I've had next to me for a few
months. I decided to start googling to find if any
studies could back it up. Sure enough, asparagus fights
cancer. So we posted the original article in our
Alternative Cancer Therapies:
Here is where my memory
disorder really stands tall. I've been writing about
Iodine for about four years now, from its history, to
its benefits, and I've even reviewed a number of
different forms of it (Magnascent being my personal
favorite). We've told you how it has been used
successfully in treating breast cancer, prostate cancer,
and benign cysts. Did I ever post it in our Alternative
Cancer Therapy section? Apparently not.
We've now posted an
article originally published by the wonderful people at
Cancer Choices. We highly recommend their site for
women with breast cancer. You can also purchase Iodoral,
the form of iodine used in cancer studies (Magnascent
does not contain enough iodine to be used against
cancer). I now take Iodoral daily, and I purchase it
from these people fighting for your right to be breast
cancer free. And you can read their article here:
may no longer be a joke. A Princeton University
psychologist yesterday presented
new evidence that sugar can be physically addictive.
Bart Hoebel, whose research focuses on behavior
patterns, addiction and the functioning of the nervous
system, has been studying the addictive power of sugar
in rats for several years. His previous studies
have demonstrated in the rodents one of commonly
understood component of addiction: a pattern of
increased intake followed by signs of withdrawal.
In his latest
studies, Hoebel and his colleagues at the Princeton
Neuroscience Institute have identified another essential
part of the addictive cycle: craving and relapse.
In his most
recent experiments, lab rats were allowed to binge on
sugar, then denied the sweet substance for a prolonged
period. When it was reintroduced into their diet, they
ate more sugar than they had before – behavior that will
sound familiar to many dieters.
the rats increased their consumption of alcohol after
their sugar fix was cut off. They also showed extreme
sensitivity to a tiny dose of amphetamine. Both findings
suggest their bingeing changed the way their brains
function – and not in a good way.
relapse are critical components of addiction, and we
have been able to demonstrate these behaviors in
sugar-bingeing rats in a number of ways,” said Hoebel,
who is presenting his findings at the annual meeting of
American College of Neuropsychopharmcology in
Scottsdale, Ariz. “We have the first set of
comprehensive studies showing the strong suggestion of
sugar addiction in rats and a mechanism that might
is in a paper that has been submitted to the Journal
research has found that rats that binge on sugar provoke
a surge of
dopamine in their brains. After about a month,
however, their brains begin to adapt to the increased
dopamine levels by producing fewer of a certain type of
receptor. Thus the animal had to ingest increasing
amounts of sugar to get the same feeling of reward or
satisfaction – a similar process to that seen in the
brains of rats addicted to cocaine and heroin.
sounds alarmist, consider that the rats suffering from
sugar withdrawal exhibited some of the same behavior as
junkies in need of a fix. These include chattering teeth
and a tendency to stay in a small tunnel rather than
explore their maze, which Hoedel considers a sign of
As usual, the
research comes with a caveat that it’s too early to
fully understand its implications for humans. Our
relationship to food – which is simultaneously physical
and emotional – is highly complex. Nevertheless, Hoedel
notes that “It seems possible that the brain adaptations
and behavioral signs seen in rats may occur in some
individuals with binge-eating disorder or bulimia.”
In any event,
the research is enough to give one pause before reaching
for that plate of holiday cookies.
The Science of Prevention A piece written by
another health freedom organization.
A recent Wall Street Journal article told the story of a
group of 600 volunteers at Emory University who
underwent an exhaustive predictive health assessment in
order to prescribe lifestyle changes. Emory plans to use
the data to help identify areas for intervention,
assigning half the participants to health coaches to
determine their effectiveness.
While the article related that many of the tests
utilized at Emory—carotid artery ultrasound, CRP
measurement, and determination of oxidative status—are
not standard predictive tests, conventional medicine may
be undergoing a paradigm shift regarding preventive
A one-size-fits-all approach to preventive care—e.g.,
colonoscopy screening every five years after age 50,
annual mammogram screening after age 35, PSA screening
each year after age 50—has recently been put to the
scientific test and has been found lacking. PSA
screening has been termed by Stanford clinicians to be
“clinically useless.” Routine cancer screening for colon
and breast cancer did not help individuals to live
longer or better, according to Dartmouth’s Gilbert
Welch, MD, in his book Should I Be Tested for Cancer?
Maybe Not and Here’s Why.
The best chance of truly preventing disease, as revealed
by years of scientific research, is to make lifestyle
choices based on one’s own genetic profile. Over 90% of
cancer is related to the lifestyle choices we make each
day, according to research cited in Dr. Bruce Lipton’s
book The Biology of Belief. Less than 10% of breast and
prostate cancer is determined by genetics. And if we are
genetically predisposed to breast or to prostate cancer,
we can adopt lifestyle choices that can help prevent the
expression of that genetic tendency. If one has a family
history of prostate cancer, for example, one might
consider the dietary program designed by Dean Ornish,
M.D., which has been shown to arrest prostate cancer
cell growth and lower PSA .
Looking at and listening to the patient using functional
testing rather than the structural diagnostic approach
often adopted by conventional medicine is key. Dr. Peter
Libby of Brigham Womens’ Hospital in Boston spends time
educating his patients that heart disease is not a
structural plumbing problem as medicine and consumers
have been conditioned to think.
AAHF’s mission to protect the right of the practitioner
to practice is reflected in the story of Dr. Robban Sica,
who ran afoul of the medical establishment simply for
offering her patients chelation therapy.
Reasons to Have Sex As if we really
One 30-minute roll in the hay burns
about 200 calories.
Researchers at Wilkes University in Pennsylvania found
that having sex once or twice a week boosts the immune
system by 30 percent.
Neurophysiologist David Weeks, M.D., of Scotland's Royal
Edinburgh Hospital, writes: "An active sex life slows
the aging process."
A little sensual massage followed by some dancing in the
sheets releases sleep-inducing endorphins.
Post-romp, you'll experience a surge in the hormone
prolactin, which develops new neurons in the brain's
olfactory bulb, improving your sense of smell.
Sex tones the pelvic muscles that support your uterus,
bladder, and bowel, meaning better pee control.
Right after your big O, you'll be practically swimming
in oxytocin (we're talking a seriously intense surge).
The overload releases endorphins, which help alleviate
pain from arthritis and -- hallelujah! -- menstrual
cramps. Additionally oxytocin helps detox the body.
Rhode Island-based relationship expert Scott Haltzman,
M.D., says that women absorb some of the testosterone
men secrete in their ejaculate. The payoff: "The
increased testosterone can have energy-boosting effects
Regular shagging can tighten your tummy...and firm your
Endocrinologists at Columbia and Stanford universities
found that women who have sex at least once a week have
more-regular menstrual cycles than those who do it once
in a blue moon.
Sex is an easier (and cheaper) way to make up after a
Speaking up about what's working (or not) in the sack
can help you express yourself in other parts of your
Sex can trigger the onset of labor when you're at term.
"Semen contains prostaglandins," Resh says. "When
they're against the cervix, prostaglandins help it
dilate and induce natural labor."
Regular sex improves your flexibility.
Recent studies have shown that doing the horizontal
hustle can bring temporary headache relief.
Says marriage therapist Michele Weiner Davis, author of
The Sex-Starved Wife: "The more you have sex, the more
likely you'll be to continue to produce testosterone,
one of the primary hormones responsible for sexual
According to the Journal of the American Medical
Association, the more he ejaculates, the more he drains
his prostate, the less likely he is to develop prostate
cancer. (Only if he's not had a vasectomy.)
"When things go well in the bed and you're pleasing your
partner," says San Francisco sex therapist Sandor Gardos,
Ph.D., founder of MyPleasure.com, "you feel more
confident and powerful in other parts of your life."
"Your sensitivities are heightened after sexual
intercourse," Gardos says. "That bottle of wine or
chocolate bar will taste even better."
new studies suggest that substances usually associated
with dulling the mind -- marijuana and red wine -- may
help ward off Alzheimer's disease and other forms of
age-related memory loss. Their addition comes as another
study dethrones folk remedy ginkgo biloba as proof
against the disease.
November meeting of the Society of Neuroscience in
Washington, D.C., researchers from Ohio State University
reported that THC, the main psychoactive substance in
the cannabis plant, may reduce inflammation in the brain
and even stimulate the formation of new brain cells.
Meanwhile, in the Nov. 21 issue of the Journal of
Biological Chemistry, neurologist David Teplow of the
University of California, Los Angeles reported that
polyphenols -- naturally occurring components of red
wine -- block the formation of proteins that build the
toxic plaques thought to destroy brain cells. In
addition, these substances can reduce the toxicity of
existing plaques, thus reducing cognitive deterioration.
Together, the studies suggest scientists are gaining a
clearer understanding of the mechanics of memory
deterioration and discovering some promising approaches
Previous research has suggested that polyphenols --
which are found in high concentrations in tea, nuts and
berries, as well as cabernets and merlots -- may inhibit
or prevent the buildup of toxic fibers in the brain.
These fibers, which are primarily composed of two
specific proteins, form the plaques that have long been
associated with Alzheimer's disease.
UCLA's Teplow and his colleagues monitored how these
proteins folded up and stuck to each other to produce
aggregates that killed nerve cells in mice. They then
treated the proteins with a polyphenol compound
extracted from grape seeds. They discovered the
polyphenols blocked the formation of the toxic
"What we found is pretty straightforward," Teplow
declared. "If the amyloid beta proteins can't assemble,
toxic aggregates can't form, and, thus, there is no
toxicity." If this also proves true in human brains, it
means administration of the compound to Alzheimer's
patients could "prevent disease development and also
ameliorate existing disease," he said. Human clinical
trials are upcoming.
Ohio State, researchers led by psychologist Gary Wenk
are studying the protective effects of
tetrahydrocannabinol, commonly known as THC. They found
that administering a THC-like synthetic drug to older
rats performed better at a memory test than a control
group of non-medicated elderly rodents.
some of the rats, the drug apparently lowered
inflammation in the hippocampus -- the region of the
brain responsible for short-term memory. It also seems
to have stimulated the generation of new brain cells.
"When we're young, we reproduce neurons and our memory
works fine," said co-author Yannick Marchalant, another
Ohio State psychologist. "When we age, the process slows
down, so we have a decrease in new cell formation in
normal aging. You need those cells to come back and help
form new memories, and we found that this THC-like agent
can influence creation of those cells."
added two cautionary notes to his report. First, to be
effective, any such treatment along these lines would
have to take place before memory loss is obvious.
Second, the researchers still have much work to do.
need to find exactly which receptors are most crucial"
to the generation of new brain cells, he said. This
discovery would "ideally lead to the development of
drugs that specifically activate those receptors."
the meantime, should aging baby boomers who are worried
about old-age mental impairment light up a joint? Wenk
was cautious in his answer, no doubt because marijuana
is suspected to be harmful to health in other ways.
"Could people smoke marijuana to prevent Alzheimer's
disease if the disease is in the family? We're not
saying that, but it might actually work," he said. "What
we are saying is it appears that a safe, legal substance
that mimics those important properties of marijuana can
work on receptors in the brain to prevent memory
impairments in aging. So that's really hopeful."
Editor's Note: Stay Tuned! We've found a ton of research
that marijuana can cure cancer. Another good reason to
keep it illegal.
Compound Fights Cancer Growth Published in DUH!
I once heard that if something is
currently in the mainstream media, it's already ten
We've talked about indole-3-carbinol
all over this web site, and have it listed in our
Cancer Therapies. Some studies have shown IC3s to be
600 times more powerful at killing cancer cells than
Now I'm going to tell you something
about I3C that you probably do not know.
Acrylamide, has been linked to cancer
in laboratory animals. Acrylamide is found in tobacco
smoke. Recently, however, it's also been found in
starchy foods that have been cooked at high
Freedom fries, French fries; a fry
by any name still contains Acrylamide. If you think
really hard, I'm sure you'll find other starchy foods
that are cooked at high temps. Like donuts.
Acrylamide has been studied by the
National Cancer Institute, and they have proven that it
can cause DNA changes that lead to cancers and DNA
adduct formation (chemicals that hook onto your DNA and
affect the process by which your cells split).
It's also been found that IC#
protects against Acrylamide and the damage it performs.
So, when you have fries, makes sure
you're having some indo-3-carbinol.
They are found in
Cruciferous vegetables: broccoli, cauliflower,
Brussels sprouts; kale, turnips, and Chinese vegetables:
and bok choi. Additionally, you can take a supplement
form. As you can probably guess, my favorite is made by
Mammography Update One recent study shows
they cause cancer.
We told you that mammography might not be
the preventive procedure modern medical hype it's all
cracked up to be in one of our first newsletters some 9
years ago (before we archived them).
We've updated our article on Mammograms
with a recent study published in
the Journal of the American Medical Association's
Archives of Internal Medicine (Arch Intern Med.
which it was discovered
that breast cancer rates increased significantly in four
Norwegian counties after women began getting mammograms
every two years. The study also pointed out that start
of screening mammography programs throughout Europe has
been associated with increased incidence of breast
shopping for toys for those special kiddies in your life
who have been nice (and even naughty)? Be careful: some
of those would-be stocking stuffers may be toxic. The
National Resources Defense Council (NRDC) and Public
Citizen yesterday sued the feds to force them to order
stores to remove tot's toys and child care products that
contain toxic plastics called
phthalates from their shelves pronto.
The watchdog groups charge in the complaint filed in
Manhattan Federal Court that the Consumer Product Safety
Commission (CPSC) is flouting "the will of Congress'' by
allowing retailers to stockpile and continue to sell
products from dolls to rubber ducks containing the
chemicals after Feb. 10—the date a federally mandated
ban on their production and sale is set to take
effect—as long as they were manufactured before
"Overwhelming evidence led Congress to ban these toys, a
ban that some retailers have already started to adopt.
The CPSC decision completely undermines those efforts by
allowing banned toys to sit on the same shelves as the
safe ones," NRDC scientist Sarah Janssen said in a
statement. "Parents want to know that the toys they're
purchasing are safe. It's not too much to ask."
Phthalates are chemicals used to soften
plastics in toys and many other common consumer
products, including some teething rings.
Exposure to them has been linked to decreased
production of sperm and the male hormone testosterone as
well as to malformed genitals in newborn boys.
Pres. Bush signed the Consumer Product Safety
Improvement Act into law in August. The measure, which
sailed through the House and Senate, bars the sale and
toys and childcare products containing certain
phthalates and lead (which causes brain damage)
after Feb. 10. The same phthalates were
outlawed in European toys nearly a decade ago and
other countries, including Argentina, Japan, Israel and
Mexico, have since followed suit, according to NRDC and
Public Citizen. Several major retailers announced they
would stop selling toys containing the chemicals by the
end of this year.
The suit was filed just days after the CSPC reportedly
agreed to a request from lawyers for unidentified biz
clients to ban production but not the sale of toys with
phthalates after Feb. 10. By interpreting the law that
way, the consumer watchdogs complain, the commission is
allowing manufacturers to churn out toxic toys right up
until the deadline – and then sell them to unwitting
consumers as long as supplies last.
"It is horrifying that the federal agency charged with
protecting consumers," said David Arkush, director of
Public Citizen's Congress Watch, "is telling the
industry it can dump chemical waste on toy-store
shelves. It's not only immoral—it's illegal."
Editor's Note: Our president, as one final salute to
us all, extended the date for manufacturers to cease
There’s a good chance you have this chemical in your
blood right now…
chemical is called bisphenol A (BPA). It’s used
to make plastics. It’s at the center of a huge
controversy. Scientists say it’s dangerous. Big business
– and the FDA – says, “don’t worry… there’s no risk…
don’t ask questions…”
there’s cause for concern. I just read another new study
showing a strong link between bisphenol A and a number
of chronic diseases, like heart disease and diabetes.
chemical is bad news. It looks like the hormone
estrogen. And when it gets into your blood stream,
you’re in trouble. Extra estrogen will make you fat,
slow and tired. It can even wipe out your sex life. If
it stays in your blood long term it can trigger cancer
or other diseases.
test results were published in the Journal of the
American Medical Association 1,2 (JAMA). I don’t
always agree with their conclusions, but there was a
convincing editorial in the issue that published the BPA
doctors and scientists are in agreement. The threat of
bisphenol A is real.
researchers found a powerful link between bisphenol A
blood levels and a host of serious health problems,
Type 2 diabetes
babies and other fetal abnormalities
Exposing you to this chemical is another experiment with
your health. An experiment you never consented to… And
there’s more: When the National Institutes of Health
did random blood tests, nearly every American had
BPA in their blood.
Worldwide production of BPA has reached 7 billion pounds
per year.3 The author of the study concluded: “Higher
BPA exposure, reflected in higher urinary concentrations
of BPA, may be associated with avoidable morbidity in
the community-dwelling adult population.”
Translated into plain English, this means that BPA is
responsible for deaths that could have been avoided.
Don’t wait for the government to protect you. They
won't. You can help yourself and your family by taking a
few simple steps:
When possible, choose
glass instead of plastic.
from your water: I recommend drinking only purified
Wash your vegetables
and fruits before you eat them.
Cut off any visible
fat from meat before cooking, since chemicals and
hormones from the feed collect in the fat.
meats, because they have fat ground in.
carbohydrates like bread, cereals, and pasta. They
make your body release excess insulin, which builds
fat and stimulates feminizing estrogen.
Eat vegetables high
in fiber to keep yourself regular. When stool
remains in your bowel for a longer time, more
estrogen is absorbed.
Eat more cruciferous
vegetables like broccoli, cauliflower, Brussels
sprouts, and cabbage. They help you excrete excess
Eat hormone-free food
and free range animals whenever possible.
Incorporate more estrogen-inhibiting foods into your
diet. Some of the best and tastiest sources are squash,
onions, green beans, cabbage, berries, citrus,
pineapples, pears, grapes, figs, melons, sesame seeds,
and pumpkin seeds.
The present invention is a topical composition for
improving the regrowth of hair when topically
applied to the hair and scalp of mammals such as
humans. The composition comprises L-carnitine,
ascorbic acid, and niacin in a pharmaceutically
acceptable carrier for topical application. A
preferred composition contains ascorbic acid and L-carnitine
in a weight/weight ratio of about 3:2. The present
invention also relates to a method of using the
composition to improve hair regrowth.
Best Mode(s) for Carrying Out the Invention The
present invention is a topical composition effective
for improving the regrowth of hair when topically
applied to the hair and scalp of mammals, and
especially humans. The composition comprises- L-carnitine,
ascorbic acid and niacin in a pharmaceutically
for topical application.
L-carnitine, also known as y-tri methylami
no-6-hydroxybutyrate or Vitamin By, is an effective
agent for alleviating certain skin disorders. For a
brief description of the metabolic activity of L-carnitine
and the effectiveness of L-carnitine therapy for
treatment of various skin disorders, reference is
again made to U.S. Patent No. 4,839,159. While L-carnitine
has been known to improve skin disorders, it has now
been found that L-carnitine in conjunction with
ascorbic acid (Vitamin C) and niacin improves the
regrowth of hair when applied topically to the hair
and scalp in a pharmaceutically acceptable carrier.
is something from of a piece I got in my email:
"Chronic vitamin D deficiency may be a culprit in heart
disease, high blood pressure and metabolic syndrome,"
study author Sue Penckofer, a professor at the Marcella
Niehoff School of Nursing at Loyola University in
Chicago, said in a university news release.
She and her colleagues reviewed a number of studies that
linked vitamin D deficiency to heart disease. The
studies said rates of severe heart disease or death may
be 30 percent to 50 percent higher in sun-deprived heart
disease patients. [Vitamin D Deficiency]
was the last time your doctor ordered a test to
determine if you were Vitamin D deficient? Has he ever
ordered this test?
Vitamin D deficiency is rampant in America. We’ve
written a lot about it, but still I’m finding more and
more research on ailments that can be alleviated by
supplementing with Vitamin D.
A report published in the January 8, 2007 issue of
Circulation: A Journal of the American Heart Association
revealed the discovery of Framingham Heart Study
researchers that having deficient levels of vitamin D is
associated with double the risk of experiencing a
cardiovascular event, including heart attack, heart
failure or stroke, within a five year period compared to
individuals with normal levels. [Framingham
researchers find heart disease linked to vitamin D
know how Vitamin D can help strengthen bones, but it
seems to also aid in halting the loss of cartilage,
prevents thinning of joint tissues, reduces pain and
improves mobility. [Women’s
studies, presented in April 2006, at a meeting of the
American Association for Cancer Research confirm vitamin
D’s cancer protective role. In the first, high levels of
vitamin D translated to a 50 percent lower risk of
breast cancer. Even modestly higher levels resulted in
10 percent less risk, which would translate to 5,000
fewer cases a year if it were true for all British
D: The Cancer Fighter]
Robert J Rowen sent us this tid bit: if you are using
over 25,000 units of Vitamin A daily (contra indicated
for pregnant mothers), you’ll have to up your Vitamin D
to 4,000-8,000 IU because there are reports that Vitamin
A can interfere with some of the functions of Vitamin D.
Rowen also informed us that Vitamin D protects your
eyesight (studies show that vitamin D may cut the risk
of early age-related macular degeneration by reducing
inflammation or preventing blood vessel growth in the
retina) and can help prevent the flu. (Get some zinc
Vitamin D deficiency can lead to: Too little of the
vitamin can lead to muscle weakness, fractures,
autoimmune diseases, infectious diseases, and
cardiovascular diseases. It can also play a role in the
development of type 1 diabetes.
can get some vitamin D through your diet. You need to
eat oily fish, such as salmon, liver, shrimp, and eggs.
Fifteen minutes in the sun, without sun glasses is
optimal, but in the winter, we just don’t go sunbathing
(at least not in Minnesota).
heard recommendations of 4,000 – 12,000 IU of Vitamin D.
The RDA (ridiculous daily amount) is inconsequential and
will result in deficiencies. Personally, I take 4,000 –
5, 000 IU daily. Of course, I choose NOW Foods.
is extremely easy to make. Mix one cup of rice (brown
rice is healthiest) with eight cups of water and allow
the mixture to cook for seven or eight hours in a crock
pot or slow cooker. This will turn your rice into a
the morning add a bit of grated raw ginger, cooked
turkey (shred it), carrots and a raw egg, along with soy
sauce and butter. Stir and serve.
a more substantial lunch or dinner jook, mix in chopped
Swiss chard, spinach or other flavorful greens, squash
cubes, leftover turkey, and often other vegetables or
leftovers as well. Heat and serve.
Turkey-based jook starts with the carcass ―make a stock
with the bones. Use the stock in place of water to mix
with the rice and when the jook porridge (mush) is
ready, add cooked turkey and a variety of vegetables.
Before serving, season with salt and pepper, soy sauce,
and/or sesame oil and serve with condiments such as
green onions, raw peanuts or cashews, and shredded
lettuce. Thickness can be adjusted based on the amount
of water used.
variation I’ve experimented with is substituting quinoa
(pronounced KEEN whah) for the rice. However, quinoa
turns to mush very quickly. You need not let it slow
cook for hours. The quinoa makes this recipe a very high
Quinoa is hard to find. Not all supermarkets carry it,
though you can find it at health food stores. You can go
Quinoa Corporation to find a seller near you, or an
online dealer. You’ll definitely find a lot more
information on Quinoa and lots of suggestions.
Besides being high in protein, quinoa is high in
magnesium which benefits your cardiovascular system. It
is also high in manganese, iron, copper, tryptophan, and
remember to wash your quinoa thoroughly in a fine mesh
strainer, using your hands. Every once in a while taste
one of seeds for bitterness. The bitterness is caused by
“saponins” which is why you wash it thoroughly. Wash all
the saponins off and then boil it using one measurement
of quinoa to two measurements of water.
Painless Cancer Cures by Deanna K Loftis, RN, BBA
Deanna came to us a few years ago praising our site. She
said she was writing a book and that our site was one of
her starting points.
site contains secondary research. Deanna used our
research to find the original research and expound upon
it. Her book is well researched and much, much thicker
than what you can find at our site.
Deanna also interviewed people who’ve used the variety
of therapies she discusses. The stories make her work
come alive. When Hollywood takes on cancer with
alternatives, the patient eventually dies. I’ve not
found one Hollywood movie that matches the stories in
Deanna’s book. All of the people she’s interviewed had a
successful battle with their cancers, coming out the
She’s even won a few accolades for her work.
Deanna spent a lot of time uncovering therapies we’ve
yet to cover (but have been well researched) and even
found a few new ones that I’ve never heard of. She’s
spends a lot of time focusing on nutrition too. So often
we think we’ve found a silver bullet and then ignore our
diets which tend to feed our cancers when a few simple
changes, as Deanna points out, can help to build our
immune systems and aid whatever therapies we’ve chosen.
anyone with a diagnosis of cancer, or who’ve been told
to go home and get their papers together, I recommend
Painless Cancer Cures.
text supplied with the product comes from the
NOW Food's Green Tea
Provides potent antioxidant protection, guarding healthy
cells from free radical damage. Supports heart and
immune health, and may help with weight management. Prepared from
the dried leaves of the Camellia sinensis plant, green
tea is an ancient beverage that's enjoyed for both its
simple, soothing taste and for its traditional health
benefits. Used in China, Japan, India and Thailand for
thousands of years, green tea is one of the most popular
beverages in the world. Green tea is produced by lightly
steaming and then immediately drying the tea leaves.
This process prevents oxidation and preserves active
constituents in the herb. Green tea is a rich source of
polyphenols, particularly the catechin, epigallocatechin
gallate (EGCG) which provides powerful antioxidant
protection, guarding healthy cells from the damaging
effects of free radical molecules caused by toxins,
pollution, smoke and UV sun rays. Green tea may also
assist with weight management by helping to boost your
metabolism. Other potential benefits of green tea
include supporting healthy cholesterol and blood sugar
levels along with promoting liver health
supplement that may provide total-body protection from
cell-damaging free radicals. Promotes cardiovascular and
neurological health, healthy cholesterol, healthy blood
pressure, and more! Resveratrol, found in the skin and seeds of red
grapes as well as in wine, berries and some plants, is a
substance produced by plants in response to injury or
fungal infection. It's believed to protect their
delicate tissues from peroxidative stress and other
damage that might result from illness, UV sun radiation
or exposure to toxic substances. As an antioxidant,
resveratrol is believed to provide similar protective
benefits for humans. Its antioxidant activity, or
ability to neutralize free radicals (unstable molecules
that attack healthy cells and damage membranes and DNA),
may account for its beneficial effects. Resveratrol also
appears to promote healthy blood composition and
circulation, and may also have anti-inflammatory
properties. A recent landmark study from Harvard Medical
School, published in the medical journal Nature, found
that ultra-high doses of resveratrol allowed obese mice
to eat a high fat diet and still live a long and healthy
life¹. Researchers discovered that the liver and other
systems in obese mice remained healthy, despite their
poor health, and fat-related deaths dropped 31 percent,
for those taking a resveratrol supplement. Another
recent study showed that resveratrol was able to protect
mice from weight gain while also boosting physical
endurance². After three weeks of supplementing with high
doses of resveratrol, mice fed a high-fat diet weighed
only 20% more than those eating a standard diet. Those
who didn't take resveratrol weighed 60% more than the
combination to protect joints, skin, eyes and more.
Retains water in molecules to provide maximum elasticity
and flexibility! Hyaluronic acid is present in
every tissue of the body, with the highest
concentrations occurring in connective tissues like skin
and cartilage. Hyaluronic acid has been shown to hold on
to more water than any other molecule in the body, which
is vital in the production/maintenance of collagen and
cartilage. Our skin is made up of 70% water, and
hyaluronic acid promotes cellular renewal and structure.
This nutrient is ideal for supporting the more aqueous
parts of the body.
Essential For The Synthesis Of Connective
Tissue Building Collagen
Covalent Silver Solution Update One of the best things
we've found, but it's not a silver bullet, and
there are many clones out there.
However, we’ve found that it is NO silver bullet. To use
it properly, you should be drinking 3oz per day. It
seems to work in conjunction with the immune system, and
works best when built up over a period of time. Then, if
anything happens, such as being hit by a flu bug, the
12-13 oz per day should help you get past it quickly.
I’ve seen it kill a flu bug in 8 to 12 hours. I’m
amazed, as are those who have written us.
have a great testimonial and success story from Bob
DiStefano who is the reader who hooked us up with the
inventor and manufacturers of Covalent Silver Water, and
who helped supply it to Simply the Best.
Again, I must emphasize that CSS is not a silver bullet.
Here is my story:
the road, I came down with the sniffles and sneezes in
New Mexico. Friends there told me that this happens to
nearly everyone who visits. Something in the air, from
the trees or grasses, or something creates an allergic
reaction. I started taking 11 ounces of CSS. Then 11
ounces twice daily. At the end of the fourth day, I was
really angry because it had developed nearly into a full
blown cold. I did the Vitamin C and Echinacea and
mushrooms (See How to Beat the Cold and Flu Season).
Finally, I created a triple strength solution of CSS,
and drank 11 ounces of that. In two days, it had finally
passed, but the nose was stuffy for another week.
CSS is not a silver bullet. It won’t work against
allergies (or possibly a cold—I assure you, as soon as
we get a testimonial on this, I’ll post it) as it does
against the flu, and others have written me that the
triple strength formula is simply what is needed at
Next, try to keep your diluted mixture from freezing.
The people making it claims that the consistency
changes, and you might have to shake it before using it
should it freeze.
watch out for the clones on the market. As soon as
studies on CSS were released (showing the power of
silver in an atomic form), everyone and their brother
started making clones. One is called NanoSilver, another
Bionaid. I have been testing these (on my neighbors) and
they just don’t produce the same results. We were told
this by the manufacturers of CSS, but since I’ve been
fooled in the past, I just have to make sure on my own.
Covalent Silver Solution is the original Nano Silver.
Until something better comes along, you can bet I’ll not
run out of it in my home.
the past decade, the number of Washington hospital
patients infected with a frightening,
antibiotic-resistant germ called MRSA has skyrocketed
from about 140 a year to more than 4,700. But these
numbers, revealed by a Seattle Times investigation,
don't appear in public documents. Washington regulators
don't track the germ or its victims, and Washington
hospitals do not have to reveal infection rates.
methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, is spread
by touch or contact. Six out of seven people infected
with MRSA contract it at a health-care facility. Many
people first learned about the germ in 2007 when the
federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
announced that invasive MRSA infections claim at least
18,000 lives a year, more than AIDS.
MRSA has been quietly killing for decades, and the
entire time, there has been a simple diagnostic test
that could have saved countless lives. However, not a
single community hospital in Washington screens every
patient for the pathogen.
Editor's note: A physician sent us photos of his
bout with MRSA. HealonPF™ cleared it up.
issue of antibiotic-resistant disease is a very serious
one. It actually exacts a greater death toll than
“modern plagues” like AIDS.
Compounding the problem is that not only are potent
antibiotics over-prescribed in modern medicine, they are
also widely over-used in agriculture – a fact that is
grossly overlooked. In fact,
agricultural antibiotic use is a MAJOR source of
human antibiotic consumption, which contributes to the
rise of antibiotic resistant “superbugs” like
methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA).
According to a study published in October, 2007 in the
Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA),
there were close to 100,000 cases of invasive MRSA
infections in the United States in 2005, which lead to
more than 18,600 deaths.
put that number into perspective, HIV/AIDS killed 17,000
people that year.
numbers are even more staggering when you include ALL
hospital infections, not just MRSA, as approximately 1.7
million Americans contracted infections during hospital
stays in 2007, and a subsequent 100,000 people
perished from these diseases, according to the U.S.
Center of Disease Control (CDC).
MRSA is a Man-Made Plague
order to effectively combat this epidemic problem, it’s
important to realize that antibiotic-resistant
disease is a man-made problem, caused by overuse of
antibiotics. It makes little sense to blame the
problem solely on lack of testing, hygiene, or proper
disinfection techniques, although all those things are
essential to stop it from spreading once it’s in
Hospitals are notorious for being hotbeds for dangerous
germs such as MRSA, which spread via contact with
contaminated surfaces, including the patient’s own skin
if they carried it in with them.
of these bacteria are good and essential for your very
survival. Others, like MRSA, can kill you, especially if
your immune function is low or if it enters your
internal organs or blood stream, as can happen during
hospitals are by no means the only place where you can
contract bugs like MRSA.
About 30 percent of people carry MRSA on their skin
without any noticeable side effects whatsoever, and
outbreaks have occurred that stemmed from places like
public gyms. Your house and even your
pets are also places that can harbor and spread this
Fortunately, protecting yourself from the devastating
effects of this kind of antibiotic-resistant bacteria is
still possible, by implementing some commonsense
Commonsense, All-Natural Approaches to Protect Yourself
Aside from avoiding antibiotics as much as possible --
which is an issue that must be addressed on a large
scale both within modern medicine and agriculture --
there are ways you can help
reduce the spread of infectious disease.
Wash your hands
-- The most important of which is to adhere to proper
hygiene, such as washing your hands with soap and water.
Handwashing, which is one of the
oldest and most powerful antibacterial treatments,
may be the key to preventing MRSA (staph infections).
According to a Johns Hopkins study, the best way for
patients to avoid such infections is for doctors and
nurses to simply wash their hands before touching a
patient. This is the most common violation in hospitals.
According to findings by The Times, in the worst cases,
as few as 40 percent of staff members comply with
hand-washing standards, with doctors being the worst
even the best hospitals typically boast no better than
90 percent compliance — which means one out of 10
practitioners may have contaminated hands.
Guidelines to proper handwashing include:
Wash your hands for
10 to 15 seconds with warm water
Use plain soap
Clean all the nooks
and crannies of your hands, including under
under running water
Use a paper towel to
open the door as a protection from germs that harbor
AVOID using antibacterial soaps. These soaps are
completely unnecessary and could easily do more harm
than good. As a matter of fact, the antibacterial
compounds found in most of these soaps are another
likely contributingfactor to the spread
of antibiotic-resistant bacteria.
tests show that the metal can effectively kill off both
the deadly MRSA and C difficile superbugs. It also kills
other dangerous germs, including the flu virus and the E
coli food poisoning bug.
tests sponsored by the Copper Development Association
Inc. (the Latin-American arm of the International Copper
Association), a grouping of 100 million MSRA bacterium
atrophied and died in a mere 90 minutes when placed on a
copper surface at room temperature. The same number of
MSRA bacteria on steel and aluminum surfaces actually
increased over time.
is likely that by installing copper faucets, light
switches, toilet seats and push plates in germ infested
areas, hospitals and nursing homes could quite literally
save thousands of lives each year.
could also consider taking the same measures in your own
home, especially if you care for someone with
chronically poor immune function.
Use natural disinfectants
– As with antibacterial hand soaps, antibacterial house
cleaners are also best avoided. A natural all-purpose
cleanser that works great for kitchen counters, cutting
boards and bathrooms is
3% hydrogen peroxide and vinegar. Just put each
liquid into a separate spray bottle, then spray the
surface with one, followed by the other.
– Researchers have found that allicin, the active
garlic, is an effective, natural “antibiotic” that
can eradicate even antibiotic-resistant bugs like MRSA.
An added boon is that the bacteria appear incapable of
developing a resistance to the compound.
However, it is important to note that the garlic must be
fresh. The active ingredient is destroyed within one
hour of smashing the garlic. Garlic pills are virtually
worthless and should not be used.
Instead, compress the garlic with a spoon prior to
swallowing it if you are not going to juice it. If you
swallow the clove intact you will not convert the
allicin to its active ingredient.
Cancer Drug Aids
in Tumor Growth Oh boy, what will
modern science think of nex?
as we were ready to publish this newsletter, a friend
sent me an article about a recent study showing that the
cancer drug Avastin (and drugs like it) were causing
tumors to actually grow.
quotation from one of the physicians running the study
goes like this:
We've discovered that when anti-angiogenesis drugs are used
to lower the level of VEGF within a tumor, it's not so
much a reduction in the endothelial cells and losing
blood vessels as it is an activation of the tumor blood
vessels supporting cells. It appears that the drugs, in
shutting down VEGF activity, are actively maturing blood
vessels, causing them to become stable and more normal,
as opposed to reducing blood vessels.
first thoughts that passed through my mind after reading
that sentence concerned my friend Kathy. I’d met her
online in a cancer support room. She wrote to me this
very sad letter explaining how the chemo and radiation
wasn’t working, and that her only hope was the new
next letter I got was from her husband telling me she’d
Sadly, these studies never seem to include
anti-angiogenesis herbs already in use by some clinics.
is one of them.
many more of our friends will have to die before we have
an honest, not for profit medical system?
the next newsletter we will review Pinnacle Studio’s
Ultimate. This is a video editing program that I’ve been
using for around 8 years now. It is the easiest program
you’ll find, affordable, and very powerful. There are
independent films that have been edited using Studio.
is also very affordable.
next step up is Avid Liquid. Newsrooms around the US use
this one. It’s a bit more complex, and costs around a
thousand dollars. It comes with a piece of hardware
allowing you to read in your videos using any number of
devices. If you’re putting all your videos on DVD,
you’ll need this.
makes the programs that Hollywood uses to edit their
films today, though the word film is really archaic
since much of Hollywood is going strictly digital. These
programs cost hundreds of thousands of dollars.
will FINALLY review the best, most powerful Slide Show
Program every created: Photodex’s ProShow Producer.
Everyone wants to know the program I use to create my
slide shows. This is it. It’s so powerful, that if you
can think of an effect you want, you can get it. You can
even place video between your slides.
you ever gotten a video off the web, but when you put it
onto a DVD it was grainy and out of focus because the
file was made to originally be played at a smaller
resolution? Well, you can bring it into ProShow Producer
shrink it down, then output it to a DVD, and on your TV
screen it will be crisp and clear, albeit smaller than
your screen, but at the resolution it was made for.
are NOT affiliates of this company because they do not
have an affiliate program. We could get rich with the
number of copies of this program people have purchased
and will purchase because of my slide shows. I’ve
received more letters asking me what program I used than
any other subject.
Version 4 just came out this month, I’ve just finished
looking at it and it just keeps getting better and
you have a camera, you’re going to want this program, or
at least its little brother: ProShow Gold.
friends stop by, I never bore them with my slides; I
be reviewing…let’s see…some thirty books. I’ve gotten
behind in my reading, so over the cold months I’ll be
gobbling up lots of books I’ve been sent to review.
working on an article on Osteoporosis, and all that I
have left to do is find a middle aged, female, weight
lifter for photos. Since I’m a photographer, you’d think
that I could do some photo-journalism. Just hard to find
models. I nearly got booted out of my health club for
asking someone to model for this article. Boy, those
people are really touchy.
got at least a dozen new (to us) alternative cancer
therapies to finish researching and publish here. You'll
hear about them first in this newsletter.
photography site (www.davidphotoart.org)
will begin to grow as I find the time to work on it. My
photoshows will be larger (higher resolution), and many
of my photos will go on sale. They are collector pieces
with a very short run. I do not write on my photos I
sell, but I will write on the back (1 of 10, and my John
Hancock) and will enclose certification of authenticity.
The option to purchase photos framed will be available,
however, you will have to tell me how much you’re
willing to pay to have them framed. Personally, I have
spent well over $400.00 to get some framed. The glass
used blocks UV light and keeps the photos from fading.
And as always, the proceeds from sales will go directly
to Minnesota Wellness Publications, Inc. I don’t make a
dime from my photography either.
and one more thing. If you have friends in MN who are
getting married, but can’t afford a photographer, have
them give me a call. I’m currently advertising that if a
wedding will cost less than $1,000.00, I will do their
wedding photography free. Why not? I’m an inveterate
volunteer, and poor people need photos too.
to Barry Ritholtz, the author of Bailout Nation,
if you adjust for inflation the costs of the Marshal
Plan, the Louisiana Purchase, the race to the moon,
the S&L crisis, the Korean War, the New Deal, the
Iraq War, the Vietnam War, and the lifetime budget
of NASA, add them together, the amount you’ll get
doesn’t quite pay for our current financial crisis.
If it is
not obvious yet that Reaganomics (top down
economics, trickle down economics, supply side
economics) doesn’t work, you are either extremely
wealthy or not very bright.
class is not a natural phenomenon. The natural order
of things, without rules and regulations, is for a
very large class of poor to develop alongside a very
small wealthy class (who, by the way, happen to be
the rulers who make the rules that keep this system
from ever changing).
economic paradigms that have led us to the collapse
of our economy began with Ronald Reagan. He believed
that if we let the wealthy class keep most of their
money through lower taxation, and allow them to make
money hand over fist through deregulation, wealth
would trickle down to the rest of us.
had worked, our middle class would have grown.
However, poverty in America has grown, the middle
class has shrunk, and each of us has been hit by
what some economists call the “greatest hidden tax
ever:” a shrinking dollar. We are all working harder
under Reagan that the Savings and Loans were
deregulated, which quickly led to a debacle that
cost every man, woman, and child in this country
been said that if we don’t learn from history, we’re
bound to repeat it.
incumbent upon each of us to examine history
objectively and determine those economic policies
that have created a strong middle class.
I have a
conservative friend who consistently tells me that
when a Democrat is in office, he makes more money, but he votes for Republicans because it’s best for
the country. Really?
cursory shrift of modern history shows us a few
simple facts, the first being that tax cuts
(especially to the wealthy) are followed by a
bubble, then a crash.
Monday, October 19, 1987 saw the largest drop in the
stock market in our history. Thomas Wofe’s The
Bonfire of the Vanities, published right after
the collapse, described a world of “greed and
excess” (many of you have heard this phrase lately)
that epitomized the economic world of Reaganomics.
Reagan took office, we'd had a 12% inflation rate and
unemployment rate of 7.1%. Reagan cut government
spending and gave huge tax breaks to the wealthy.
This spawned an economic revival that was
unprecedented. Our GDP grew at a rate of 3.4%,
inflation and unemployment were cut in half, and the
Dow Jones average grew at an annual average rate of
the “bubble.” Then came the crash on Black Monday.
secret to a strong economy is balance. When the top
gets too heavy, we crash.
historical economic truth is when wealth is taxed,
the middle class is strongest. Taxing wealth is
constantly labeled socialism. The wealthy want us to
believe this and fear it. They’ve convinced many who
would never be affected by this sort of tax, who
would actually benefit from it, to believe that
taxing wealth is bad for the nation.
the term socialism bandied about quite a bit during
this past election. People seem to fear socialism,
even though, ironically, we’ve all benefitted from
it. We all drive on roads, highways, and bridges
that were built through socialism. The police and
fire departments are socialistic. Our public schools
are the product of socialism. Yet, this term strikes
fear in Americans.
progressive tax (one in which the more you make, the
greater the percentage of tax you pay) is, to many,
socialism. Why? Because it harkens back to Marx’s
saying, “From each according to his means.”
to be deaf not to hear how our democracy would end
if Obama were elected because he was a socialist.
did the progressive income tax begin?
Greece had had a flat tax: everyone paid the same
If you couldn’t pay your tax, you were marched to
the gates of the city and tossed out on your ear.
Beyond the gates of the city was certain death.
after following this rule for a while, their civilization
began to break down, for it was from the ranks of the
poor that built their military. The poor provided
the wealthy their best workers.
Greeks, famous for their thinking, got together to
mull over this problem. The question foremost in
their thinking was: What is the most important facet
of a society?
answer they came up with was quite simple: Society
was the most important facet of a society. Without
society, one could not gather and maintain wealth
because someone would come and take it away. Without
society, anyone could take your life.
concluded that those who get the most from a
society, owe the most back to that society. The
progressive tax was born.
they become rampant Communists? Actually, it was out
of this so-called socialism that the first democracy
on the planet developed.
and socialism are not mutually exclusive. Our
country has always been an admixture of philosophies
just as it has been an admixture of religions and
no such thing as “free market capitalism” in the
world. Free market capitalism works only in theory.
In reality, it creates the “greed and excess” that
leads us to financial unrest.
Capitalism needs regulations just as football needs
regulations. No one would ever suggest that we pull
the referees and officials off the football field.
Human nature just tends to devolve into chaos when
those who will tell you that Hoover raised taxes
causing a crash. In the same breath, they tell you
that the recovery during Roosevelt’s term was
precipitated by Hoover’s policies.
crash was coming no matter what he did. In economics
there is always a delayed effect. Much of the
recession that hit the Bush administration had been
caused by the last of the Clinton years. Clinton
(known to some as the best Republican president in
recent years) cut welfare, gave tax breaks to
companies moving their operations off-shore, and
doled out greater tax cuts than the second Bush.
Cutting welfare took a lot of money out of
circulation; so did the tax cuts. We had a slight
bubble, and then the recession after Bush had taken
of holes goes like this: when you’re in one, stop
this is not what the Bush administration has done;
every hole they dug was fixed by digging deeper. And
now we have the results.
administration was the first government in the
history of the world to give tax breaks during a
war. I asked my conservative friend what the heck is
up with this. His response? “Leadership.”
leadership of the head lemming approaching a cliff.
economic mess we are in will not be solved in the
two terms of Barak Obama. Our economic structure is
so out of balance, it will take at least ten years
to rebalance it, according to many
what he does, you can expect a President Obama to be
dogged every step of the way. This is simply the way
of the conservative right. When they can’t get their way,
they block progress.
wealthy don’t give up power very easily, even though
the end result of Reaganomics has left them with
less. Yes, with the economy the way it is, the
wealthy are a bit less wealthy. Every time we borrow
from China, their wealth is worth a little
a free society cannot help the many who are poor, it
cannot save the few who are rich." John F. Kennedy
Supporting policies that favor the wealthy are those
who hate the poor so fervently, they will go to the
polls and vote against their own self-interests. They
simply hate the fact that some poor person will get
one dime he hasn’t earned. So, instead, they vote to
give their tax dollars to the rich. Except they
don’t realize that their tax dollars are going to
the rich because they are so dreadfully uninformed.
don’t believe your taxes are going to the wealthy,
then you must also believe that the 37,000 lobbyists
in Washington are there to make friends, and it’s
time you read the book, Free Lunch by Donald
we hate those who don’t work, but dream of garnering
billions in wealth, just so we will never have to
Eisenhower taxed wealth by more than 90%. He built
the infrastructure of this country and in doing so, built the
strongest middle class in our history.
Ironically, when the wealthy are taxed heavily,
their money is “worth” more. The dollar is stronger.
anyone gain real wealth when the masses have little? Isn’t it
the masses with money to spend who grease the
wheels of the economy?
hear over the next eight years a lot of screaming
for “smaller government.”
Conservatives tell us that government doesn’t work,
and then they get elected and prove it.
need is “better” government. This means that all of
us, yes you too, must get out there on the playing
field and get involved. Stay in contact with your
representatives, state, local, and federal. Stay on
their backs. Question their voting records. Pat them
on the back when they’ve done well. Keep them
honest. And when one is caught with his fingers in
the cookie jar, boot his/her butt out.
mind the two historical economic truths:
breaks to the wealthy are followed by a bubble, then
wealth creates a strong middle class and strengthens
contact your representatives and tell them to Tax
Here, Tax Now, Tax Baby Tax. Because it is time to
repair our collapsing infrastructure; it’s time to
once again show how a rising tide raises ALL boats.
Those who get the most from a society owe the most
back to that society. This is plain and simple horse
No matter what your political
bent, this article should not only be read by every
literate American citizen, but should be immediately
published in history books.
As a child, I was told by my father
about the great depression. It sounded terrible. I
asked my father if he felt we'd every have another
depression like that, and he said, "No. The
government created enough safeguards ever to have
those safeguards no longer exist. As if those in
power had forgotten why they were there in the first
place. And again, we see that they refused to learn
from history, and now are condemned to repeat it.
The article is written by Joseph E
Stiglitz, a professor of economics at Columbia
University and Nobel Laureate, who is known as the
most often quoted economist in history.
This is the most concise and
thorough article I've yet to find that makes it
perfectly clear how our economy collapsed.
Behind the debate over remaking U.S. financial
policy will be a debate over who’s to blame. It’s
crucial to get the history right, writes a Nobel
laureate economist, identifying five key
mistakes—under Reagan, Clinton, and Bush II—and one
come a moment when the most urgent threats posed by
the credit crisis have eased and the larger task
before us will be to chart a direction for the
economic steps ahead. This will be a dangerous
moment. Behind the debates over future policy is a
debate over history—a debate over the causes of our
current situation. The battle for the past will
determine the battle for the present. So it’s
crucial to get the history straight.
What were the critical decisions that led to the
crisis? Mistakes were made at every fork in the
road-we had what engineers call a “system failure,”
when not a single decision but a cascade of
decisions produce a tragic result. Let’s look at
five key moments.
No. 1: Firing the
In 1987 the Reagan administration decided to remove
Paul Volcker as chairman of the Federal Reserve
Board and appoint Alan Greenspan in his place.
Volcker had done what central bankers are supposed
to do. On his watch, inflation had been brought down
from more than 11 percent to under 4 percent. In the
world of central banking, that should have earned
him a grade of A+++ and assured his re-appointment.
But Volcker also understood that financial markets
need to be regulated. Reagan wanted someone who did
not believe any such thing, and he found him in a
devotee of the objectivist philosopher and
free-market zealot Ayn Rand.
Greenspan played a double role. The Fed controls the
money spigot, and in the early years of this decade,
he turned it on full force. But the Fed is also a
regulator. If you appoint an anti-regulator as your
enforcer, you know what kind of enforcement you’ll
get. A flood of liquidity combined with the failed
levees of regulation proved disastrous.
Greenspan presided over not one but two financial
bubbles. After the high-tech bubble popped, in
2000-2001, he helped inflate the housing bubble. The
first responsibility of a central bank should be to
maintain the stability of the financial system. If
banks lend on the basis of artificially high asset
prices, the result can be a meltdown—as we are
seeing now, and as Greenspan should have known. He
had many of the tools he needed to cope with the
situation. To deal with the high-tech bubble, he
could have increased margin requirements (the amount
of cash people need to put down to buy stock). To
deflate the housing bubble, he could have curbed
predatory lending to low-income households and
prohibited other insidious practices (the
no-documentation—or “liar”—loans, the interest-only
loans, and so on). This would have gone a long way
toward protecting us. If he didn’t have the tools,
he could have gone to Congress and asked for them.
Of course, the current problems with our financial
system are not solely the result of bad lending. The
banks have made mega-bets with one another through
complicated instruments such as derivatives,
credit-default swaps, and so forth. With these, one
party pays another if certain events happen—for
instance, if Bear Stearns goes bankrupt, or if the
dollar soars. These instruments were originally
created to help manage risk—but they can also be
used to gamble. Thus, if you felt confident that the
dollar was going to fall, you could make a big bet
accordingly, and if the dollar indeed fell, your
profits would soar. The problem is that, with this
complicated intertwining of bets of great magnitude,
no one could be sure of the financial position of
anyone else—or even of one’s own position. Not
surprisingly, the credit markets froze.
Here too Greenspan played a role. When I was
chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers, during
the Clinton administration, I served on a committee
of all the major federal financial regulators, a
group that included Greenspan and Treasury Secretary
Robert Rubin. Even then, it was clear that
derivatives posed a danger. We didn’t put it as
memorably as Warren Buffett—who saw derivatives as
“financial weapons of mass destruction”—but we took
his point. And yet, for all the risk, the
deregulators in charge of the financial system—at
the Fed, at the Securities and Exchange Commission,
and elsewhere—decided to do nothing, worried that
any action might interfere with “innovation” in the
financial system. But innovation, like “change,” has
no inherent value. It can be bad (the “liar” loans
are a good example) as well as good.
No. 2: Tearing Down
The deregulation philosophy would pay unwelcome
dividends for years to come. In November 1999,
Congress repealed the Glass-Steagall Act—the
culmination of a $300 million lobbying effort by the
banking and financial-services industries, and
spearheaded in Congress by Senator Phil Gramm.
Glass-Steagall had long separated commercial banks
(which lend money) and investment banks (which
organize the sale of bonds and equities); it had
been enacted in the aftermath of the Great
Depression and was meant to curb the excesses of
that era, including grave conflicts of interest. For
instance, without separation, if a company whose
shares had been issued by an investment bank, with
its strong endorsement, got into trouble, wouldn’t
its commercial arm, if it had one, feel pressure to
lend it money, perhaps unwisely? An ensuing spiral
of bad judgment is not hard to foresee. I had
opposed repeal of Glass-Steagall. The proponents
said, in effect, Trust us: we will create Chinese
walls to make sure that the problems of the past do
not recur. As an economist, I certainly possessed a
healthy degree of trust, trust in the power of
economic incentives to bend human behavior toward
self-interest—toward short-term self-interest, at
any rate, rather than Tocqueville’s “self interest
The most important consequence of the repeal of
Glass-Steagall was indirect—it lay in the way repeal
changed an entire culture. Commercial banks are not
supposed to be high-risk ventures; they are supposed
to manage other people’s money very conservatively.
It is with this understanding that the government
agrees to pick up the tab should they fail.
Investment banks, on the other hand, have
traditionally managed rich people’s money—people who
can take bigger risks in order to get bigger
returns. When repeal of Glass-Steagall brought
investment and commercial banks together, the
investment bank culture came out on top. There was a
demand for the kind of high returns that could be
obtained only through high leverage and big
There were other important steps down the
deregulatory path. One was the decision in April
2004 by the Securities and Exchange Commission, at a
meeting attended by virtually no one and largely
overlooked at the time, to allow big investment
banks to increase their debt-to-capital ratio (from
12:1 to 30:1, or higher) so that they could buy more
mortgage-backed securities, inflating the housing
bubble in the process. In agreeing to this measure,
the S.E.C. argued for the virtues of
self-regulation: the peculiar notion that banks can
effectively police themselves. Self-regulation is
preposterous, as even Alan Greenspan now concedes,
and as a practical matter it can’t, in any case,
identify systemic risks—the kinds of risks that
arise when, for instance, the models used by each of
the banks to manage their portfolios tell all the
banks to sell some security all at once.
As we stripped back the old regulations, we did
nothing to address the new challenges posed by 21st
century markets. The most important challenge was
that posed by derivatives. In 1998 the head of the
Commodity Futures Trading Commission, Brooksley
Born, had called for such regulation—a concern that
took on urgency after the Fed, in that same year,
engineered the bailout of Long-Term Capital
Management, a hedge fund whose trillion-dollar-plus
failure threatened global financial markets. But
Secretary of the Treasury Robert Rubin, his deputy,
Larry Summers, and Greenspan were adamant—and
successful—in their opposition. Nothing was done.
No. 3: Applying the Leeches
Then along came the Bush tax cuts, enacted first on
June 7, 2001, with a follow-on installment two years
later. The president and his advisers seemed to
believe that tax cuts, especially for upper-income
Americans and corporations, were a cure-all for any
economic disease—the modern-day equivalent of
leeches. The tax cuts played a pivotal role in
shaping the background conditions of the current
crisis. Because they did very little to stimulate
the economy, real stimulation was left to the Fed,
which took up the task with unprecedented
low-interest rates and liquidity. The war in Iraq
made matters worse, because it led to soaring oil
prices. With America so dependent on oil imports, we
had to spend several hundred billion more to
purchase oil-money that otherwise would have been
spent on American goods. Normally this would have
led to an economic slowdown, as it had in the 1970s.
But the Fed met the challenge in the most myopic way
imaginable. The flood of liquidity made money
readily available in mortgage markets, even to those
who would normally not be able to borrow. And, yes,
this succeeded in forestalling an economic downturn;
America’s household saving rate plummeted to zero.
But it should have been clear that we were living on
borrowed money and borrowed time.
The cut in the tax rate on capital gains contributed
to the crisis in another way. It was a decision that
turned on values: those who speculated (read:
gambled) and won were taxed more lightly than wage
earners who simply worked hard. But more than that,
the decision encouraged leveraging, because interest
was tax-deductible. If, for instance, you borrowed a
million to buy a home or took a $100,000 home-equity
loan to buy stock, the interest would be fully
deductible every year. Any capital gains you made
were taxed lightly—and at some possibly remote day
in the future. The Bush administration was providing
an open invitation to excessive borrowing and
lending—not that American consumers needed any more
No. 4: Faking the
Meanwhile, on July 30, 2002, in the wake of a series
of major scandals—notably the collapse of WorldCom
and Enron—Congress passed the Sarbanes-Oxley Act.
The scandals had involved every major American
accounting firm, most of our banks, and some of our
premier companies, and made it clear that we had
serious problems with our accounting system.
Accounting is a sleep-inducing topic for most
people, but if you can’t have faith in a company’s
numbers, then you can’t have faith in anything about
a company at all. Unfortunately, in the negotiations
over what became Sarbanes-Oxley, a decision was made
not to deal with what many, including the respected
former head of the S.E.C. Arthur Levitt, believed to
be a fundamental underlying problem: stock options.
Stock options have been defended as providing
healthy incentives toward good management, but in
fact they are “incentive pay” in name only. If a
company does well, the C.E.O. gets great rewards in
the form of stock options; if a company does poorly,
the compensation is almost as substantial but is
bestowed in other ways. This is bad enough. But a
collateral problem with stock options is that they
provide incentives for bad accounting: top
management has every incentive to provide distorted
information in order to pump up share prices.
The incentive structure of the rating agencies also
proved perverse. Agencies such as Moody’s and
Standard & Poor’s are paid by the very people they
are supposed to grade. As a result, they’ve had
every reason to give companies high ratings, in a
financial version of what college professors know as
grade inflation. The rating agencies, like the
investment banks that were paying them, believed in
financial alchemy—that F-rated toxic mortgages could
be converted into products that were safe enough to
be held by commercial banks and pension funds. We
had seen this same failure of the rating agencies
during the East Asia crisis of the 1990s: high
ratings facilitated a rush of money into the region,
and then a sudden reversal in the ratings brought
devastation. But the financial overseers paid no
No. 5: Letting It
The final turning point came with the passage of a
bailout package on October 3, 2008—that is, with the
administration’s response to the crisis itself. We
will be feeling the consequences for years to come.
Both the administration and the Fed had long been
driven by wishful thinking, hoping that the bad news
was just a blip, and that a return to growth was
just around the corner. As America’s banks faced
collapse, the administration veered from one course
of action to another. Some institutions (Bear
Stearns, A.I.G., Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac) were
bailed out. Lehman Brothers was not. Some
shareholders got something back. Others did not.
The original proposal by Treasury Secretary Henry
Paulson, a three-page document that would have
provided $700 billion for the secretary to spend at
his sole discretion, without oversight or judicial
review, was an act of extraordinary arrogance. He
sold the program as necessary to restore confidence.
But it didn’t address the underlying reasons for the
loss of confidence. The banks had made too many bad
loans. There were big holes in their balance sheets.
No one knew what was truth and what was fiction. The
bailout package was like a massive transfusion to a
patient suffering from internal bleeding—and nothing
was being done about the source of the problem,
namely all those foreclosures. Valuable time was
wasted as Paulson pushed his own plan, “cash for
trash,” buying up the bad assets and putting the
risk onto American taxpayers. When he finally
abandoned it, providing banks with money they
needed, he did it in a way that not only cheated
America’s taxpayers but failed to ensure that the
banks would use the money to re-start lending. He
even allowed the banks to pour out money to their
shareholders as taxpayers were pouring money into
The other problem not addressed involved the looming
weaknesses in the economy. The economy had been
sustained by excessive borrowing. That game was up.
As consumption contracted, exports kept the economy
going, but with the dollar strengthening and Europe
and the rest of the world declining, it was hard to
see how that could continue. Meanwhile, states faced
massive drop-offs in revenues—they would have to cut
back on expenditures. Without quick action by
government, the economy faced a downturn. And even
if banks had lent wisely—which they hadn’t—the
downturn was sure to mean an increase in bad debts,
further weakening the struggling financial sector.
The administration talked about confidence building,
but what it delivered was actually a confidence
trick. If the administration had really wanted to
restore confidence in the financial system, it would
have begun by addressing the underlying problems—the
flawed incentive structures and the inadequate
Was there any single decision which, had it been
reversed, would have changed the course of history?
Every decision—including decisions not to do
something, as many of our bad economic decisions
have been—is a consequence of prior decisions, an
interlinked web stretching from the distant past
into the future. You’ll hear some on the right point
to certain actions by the government itself—such as
the Community Reinvestment Act, which requires banks
to make mortgage money available in low-income
neighborhoods. (Defaults on C.R.A. lending were
actually much lower than on other lending.) There
has been much finger-pointing at Fannie Mae and
Freddie Mac, the two huge mortgage lenders, which
were originally government-owned. But in fact they
came late to the subprime game, and their problem
was similar to that of the private sector: their
C.E.O.’s had the same perverse incentive to indulge
The truth is most of the individual mistakes boil
down to just one: a belief that markets are
self-adjusting and that the role of government
should be minimal. Looking back at that belief
during hearings this fall on Capitol Hill, Alan
Greenspan said out loud, “I have found a flaw.”
Congressman Henry Waxman pushed him, responding, “In
other words, you found that your view of the world,
your ideology, was not right; it was not working.”
“Absolutely, precisely,” Greenspan said. The embrace
by America—and much of the rest of the world—of this
flawed economic philosophy made it inevitable that
we would eventually arrive at the place we are
Want to do something nice? Go to
this site, spend twenty seconds there, and you'll
help feed abandoned, neglected, and abused animals:
Long ago, dishes and cookware in Europe were made of
a dense orange clay called 'pygg'. When people
saved coins in jars made of this clay, the jars
became known as 'pygg banks.' When an English potter
misunderstood the word, he made a bank that
resembled a pig. And it caught on.
Did you ever wonder why dimes, quarters and half
dollars have notches, while pennies and nickels do
The US Mint began putting notches on the edges of
coins containing gold and silver to discourage
holders from shaving off small quantities of the
precious metals Dimes, quarters and half dollars are
notched because they used to contain silver.
Pennies and nickels aren't notched because the
metals they contain are not valuable enough to
Why do men's clothes have buttons on the right while
women's clothes have buttons on the left?
When buttons were invented, they were very expensive
and worn primarily by the rich. Because wealthy
women were dressed by maids, dressmakers put the
buttons on the maid's right. Since most people are
right-handed, it is easier to push buttons on the
right through holes on the left. And that's where
women's buttons have remained since.
Why do X's at the end of a letter signify kisses?
In the Middle Ages, when many people were unable to
read or write, documents were often signed using an
X. Kissing the X represented an oath to fulfill
obligations specified in the document. The X and
the kiss eventually became synonymous.
Why is shifting responsibility to someone else
called 'passing the buck'?
In card games, it was once customary to pass an
item, called a buck, from player to player to
indicate whose turn it was to deal. If a player did
not wish to assume the responsibility, he would
'pass the buck' to the next player.
Why do people clink their glasses before drinking a
It used to be common for someone to try to kill an
enemy by offering him a poisoned drink. To prove to
a guest that a drink was safe, it became customary
for a guest to pour a small amount of his drink into
the glass of the host. Both men would drink it
simultaneously. When a guest trusted his host, he
would then just touch or clink the host's glass with
Why are people in the public eye said to be 'in the
Invented in 1825, limelight was used in lighthouses
and stage lighting by burning a cylinder of lime
which produced a brilliant light. In the theatre,
performers on stage 'in the limelight' were seen by
the audience to be the center of attention.
Why do ships and aircraft in trouble use 'mayday' as
their call for help?
This comes from the French word m'aidez -meaning
'help me' -- and is pronounced 'mayday,'
Why is someone who is feeling great 'on cloud
Types of clouds are numbered according to the
altitudes they attain, with nine being the highest
cloud If someone is said to be on cloud nine, that
person is floating well above worldly cares..
Why are zero scores in tennis called 'love'?
In France , where tennis first became popular, a
big, round zero on scoreboard looked like an egg and
was called 'l'oeuf,' which is French for 'egg.' When
tennis was introduced in the US , Americans
pronounced it 'love.'
In golf, where did the term 'Caddie' come from?
When Mary, later Queen of Scots, went to France as a
young girl (for education & survival), Louis, King
of France, learned that she loved the Scot game
'golf.' So he had the first golf course outside of
Scotland built for her enjoyment. To make sure she
was properly chaperoned (and guarded) while she
played, Louis hired cadets from a military school to
accompany her. Mary liked this a lot and when she
returned to Scotland (not a very good idea in the
long run), she took the practice with her. In
French, the word cadet is pronounced 'ca-day' and
the Scots changed it into 'caddie.'
The Love Stories Are
Inter Press Service
By Ali al-Fadhily and Dahr Jamail*
Go to Original
BAGHDAD, Jun 14 (IPS) - As statistics go, at least
655,000 Iraqis have died as a result of the occupation,
now in its fifth year. Every one of them has left behind
once loved ones to mourn the loss and to think of what
might have been.
This is the land of the Arabian Nights, and of love
stories that became fables far and wide. In these
stories, in the traditions of which they were born, the
lover thought nothing of giving up his life for a
beloved. But no one thought death would come to this
land under the present circumstances.
All who have died had their own love stories, if not all
romantic ones. And that must be a million of them. The
figure of 655,000 – of Iraqis who died as a result of
the U.S.-led invasion and occupation -- came from the
British medical journal Lancet based on a study in July
last year. The number would have risen significantly
after one of the bloodiest years of the occupation.
The deaths are not the only tragedies to have fallen
upon Iraq's love stories.
"We were engaged to be married after the end of the
war," Hussam Abdulla, a 28-year-old engineer from
Baghdad told IPS. "We thought the war would not last
more than a month, and so we planned our marriage for
May 2003. But everything went wrong. I was detained for
two years, and my fiancée's family had to flee to Egypt
because her father was a senior army officer whose life
was threatened first by occupation forces and later by
Abdulla's engagement never led to marriage.
And it was the lucky ones who fled the country early.
Others stayed on to face death, detention, or a living
hell at home. Army officers, doctors, journalists and
artists came particularly to be targeted by death
"I thought the man I loved simply dumped me," a
25-year-old woman, who asked to be called Arwa, told IPS.
"He told me he will call me as soon as he finds a job in
Jordan, but he just disappeared. His family told me they
did not know where he is."
Much later, she was told he had been detained by U.S.
forces near the Jordanian border. "The U.S. authorities
said his name did not exist on their files. But I will
wait for him, even if I have to wait all my life."
Tens of thousands of detained Iraqis have never been
found on any U.S. military records. Their families still
do not know whether they are dead or alive.
"I told my fiancée to find herself someone else for a
husband," 32-year-old Khalik Obeidy, who was visiting
Baghdad from Fallujah, told IPS. "I lost my job as an
army officer, and my family house was blasted during the
U.S. siege of Fallujah, so our marriage seems to be next
"But also, getting married in such a situation will only
mean more agony. And bringing up children is more than
difficult. My fiancée still says things will improve,
she says she will wait. She's crazy."
Stories of broken engagements and marriages are
everywhere in Baghdad.
"In 2006, I sent my wife and two daughters to Jordan for
work, and I was supposed to follow them after selling
the car and the furniture," 40-year-old teacher Tariq
Khalaf from Baghdad told IPS. "But my father died, and I
had to stay here to look after the rest of the family.
Now I don't know whether to bring them back to this
Iraqi hell, or just stay separated."
Jassim Alwan, who recently made the dangerous trip to
Baghdad from Samarra, 90km north of the capital city,
tells the story of 23-year-old Abdullah that everyone in
Samarra seems to know.
"He has a scruffy beard, and he keeps wandering the
streets," Alwan told IPS. "Abdullah is now better known
than the mayor of the city. He was a wonderful guy. And
then his bride was shot by U.S. and Iraqi soldiers at a
checkpoint. The poor guy could not stand the shock."
This is the kind of love story Iraqis tell nowadays.
"The country of the Arabian Nights and of wonderful
poetry is no longer good for love," Maki al-Nazzal,
political analyst and poet, told IPS. "All Iraqi poetry
under occupation is now about death and separation."
(*Ali, our correspondent in Baghdad, works in close
collaboration with Dahr Jamail, our U.S.-based
specialist writer on Iraq who travels extensively in the
"President-elect Barack Obama is still
looking g g
for a White House dog. In fact, he has spent
more time selecting a dog than John McCain
did selecting a running mate."
"Americans are the first people to
to the poorhouse in automobiles."
"Detroit auto execs fly private jets
Washington to beg for money."
If you've ever worked for a boss that reacts before
getting the facts
and thinking things through, you will love this!
A large company, feeling it was time for a shakeup,
hired a new CEO. The new boss was determined to rid the
company of all slackers.
On a tour of the facilities, the CEO noticed a guy
leaning on a wall. The room was full of workers and he
wanted to let them know that he meant business.
He walked up to the guy leaning against the wall and
asked, "How much money do you make a week?"
A little surprised, the young man looked at him and
replied, "I make $400 a week. Why?"
The CEO then handed the guy $1,600 in cash and
screamed, "Here's four weeks' pay, now GET OUT and don't
Feeling pretty good about himself, the CEO looked around
the room and asked, "Does any one want to tell me what
that goof-ball did here?"
From across the room came a voice, "Pizza delivery guy
Helicopter pilot lessons
learned during Vietnam but still true today.
1. Once you are in the fight, it is way too late to
wonder if it was a good idea.
2. There is no such thing as a "fun" hot LZ.
3. It is a fact that helicopter tail rotors are
instinctively drawn toward trees, stumps, rocks, etc.
While it may be possible to ward off this natural event
some of the time, it cannot, despite the best efforts of
the crew, always be prevented. It's just what they do.
4. NEVER get into a fight without more ammunition than
the other guy.
5. The engine RPM, and the rotor RPM, must BOTH be kept
in the GREEN. Failure to heed this commandment can
affect the morale of the crew.
6. There are only two kinds of helicopter pilots: those
that have crashed, and those who are going to.
7. Cover your Buddy, so he can be around to cover you.
8. Letters from home are not always great.
9. The madness of war can extract a heavy toll. Please
have exact change.
10. Always remember that helicopters are different from
airplanes. Helicopters are thousands of pounds of parts
all flying in loose formation often in opposition to
each other, and unlike airplanes, they fly by beating
the air into submission.
11. Decisions made by someone over your head will seldom
be in your best interest.
12. The terms "Protective Armor" and "Helicopter" are
mutually exclusive terms.
13. The further away you are from your friends, the less
likely it is that they can help you when you really need
them the most.
14. Being good and lucky is not enough, there is always
15. "Chicken Plates" are not something you order in a
16. If everything is as clear as a bell, and everything
is going exactly as planned, you're about to be
17. The B.S.R. (Bang, Stare, Read) Theory states that
the louder the sudden bang in the helicopter, the
quicker your eyes will be drawn to the gauges.
18. The longer you stare at the gauges, the less time it
takes them to move from green to red.
19. The sole purpose of our helicopters is to support
our grunts. Anyone who forgets that has forgotten the
20. No matter what you do, the bullet with your name on
it will get you. So too can the ones addressed "To Whom
It May Concern".
21. Gravity may not be fair, but it is the law.
22. If the rear echelon troops are really happy, the
front line troops probably do not have what they need.
23. If you are wearing body armor, the incoming will
probably miss that part.
24. It hurts less to die with a uniform on than to die
in a hospital bed.
25. Happiness is a belt-fed weapon.
26. If something hasn't broken on your helicopter, it's
27. Eat when you can. Sleep when you can. Visit the head
when you can. The next opportunity may not come around
for a long time, if ever.
28. Combat pay is a flawed concept.
29. Having all your body parts intact and functioning at
the end of the day beats the alternative.
30. Air superiority is NOT a luxury.
31. It is always a bad thing to run out of airspeed,
altitude, and ideas all at the same time.
32. Nothing is as useless as altitude above you and
runway behind you.
33. While the rest of the crew may be in the same
predicament, it's almost always the pilot's job to
arrive at the crash site first.
34. When you shoot your weapon, clean it the first
chance you get.
35. Loud sudden noises in a helicopter WILL get your
36. Hot garrison chow is better than hot C-rations,
which, in turn is better than cold C-rations, which is
better than no food at all. All of these, however, are
preferable to cold rice balls even if they do have the
little pieces of fish in them.
37. WHAT is often more important than WHY.
38. If you find yourself in a fair fight, your tactics
39. Girlfriends are fair game. Wives are not.
40. Everybody's a hero on the ground in the officers
club and after the fourth drink.
41. There is no such thing as a small firefight.
42. A free-fire zone has nothing to do with economics.
43. The farther you fly into the mountains (or over
water), the louder the strange engine noises become.
44. Medals are OK, but having your body and all your
friends in one piece at the end of the day is a whole
45. The only medal you really want to be awarded is the
46. Thousands of Vietnam Veterans earned medals for
bravery every day. A few were even awarded.
47. In helicopters, there is no such thing as "a good
48. Running out of pedal, fore or aft cyclic, or
collective are all bad ideas. Any combination of these
can be deadly.
49. Nomex is NOT fire proof.
50. There is only one rule in war: When you win, you get
to make up the Rules.
51. Living and dying can both hurt a lot.
53. While a Super Bomb could be considered one of the
four essential building blocks of life, powdered eggs
54. C-4 can make a dull day fun.
55. Cocoa Powder is neither.
56. There is no such thing as a fair fight, only ones
where you win or lose.
57. If you win the battle you are entitled to the
spoils. If you lose you don't care.
58. Nobody cares what you did yesterday or what you are
going to do tomorrow. What is important is what you are
doing NOW to solve our problem.
59. If you have extra, share it quickly.
60. Always make sure someone has a P-38.
61. A sucking chest wound may be God's way of telling
you it's time to go home.
62. Prayer may not help . . . but it can't hurt.
63. Flying is better than walking. Walking is better
than running. Running is better than crawling. All of
these however, are better than extraction by a Med-Evac,
even if this is technically a form of flying.
64. If everyone does not come home, none of the rest of
us can ever fully come home.
65. Do not fear the enemy, for your enemy can only take
your life. It is far better that you fear the media, for
they will steal your HONOR.
66. A grunt is the true reason for the existence of the
helicopter. Every helicopter flown in Vietnam had one
real purpose: To help the grunt. It is unfortunate that
many helicopters never had the opportunity to fulfill
their one true mission in life simply because someone
forgot this fact.
You have two choices in life:
You can stay single and be miserable,
or get married and wish you were dead.
At a cocktail party, one woman said to another,
"Aren't you wearing your wedding ring on the wrong
finger?" "Yes, I am. I married the wrong man."
A lady inserted an ad in the classifieds:
"Husband Wanted". Next day she received a hundred letters.
They all said the same thing:
"You can have mine."
When a woman steals your husband,
there is no better revenge than to let her keep him.
A woman is incomplete until she is married. Then she is
A little boy asked his father,
"Daddy, how much does it cost to get married?" Father replied, "I don't know son, I'm still paying."
A young son asked,
"Is it true Dad, that in some parts of Africa a man
doesn't know his wife until he marries her?" Dad replied, "That happens in every country, son."
Then there was a woman who said, "I never knew what real
happiness was until I got married, and by then, it was
Marriage is the triumph of imagination over
If you want your spouse to listen and pay strict
attention to every word you say -- talk in your sleep.
Just think, if it weren't for marriage, men would go
through life thinking they had no faults at all.
First guy says, "My wife's an angel!" Second guy remarks, "You're lucky, mine's still alive."
"A Woman's Prayer: Dear Lord, I pray for: Wisdom, To understand a man , to
Love and to forgive him , and for patience, For his
moods. Because Lord, if I pray for Strength I'll just
beat him to death"
* * *
Husband and wife are waiting at the bus stop with their
nine children. A blind man joins them after a few
minutes. When the bus arrives, they find it overloaded
and only the wife and the nine kids are able to fit onto
So the husband and the blind man decide to walk. After a
while, the husband gets irritated by the ticking of the
stick of the blind man as he taps it on the sidewalk,
and says to him, "Why don't you put a piece of rubber at
the end of your stick? That ticking sound is driving me
The blind man replies, "If you had put a rubber at the
end of YOUR stick, we'd be riding the bus, so shut the
Proud to be a golfer
A recent study found the average American golfer, walks
about 900 miles a year.
Another study found American golfers drink, on average,
22 gallons of alcohol a year.
That means, on average, American golfers get about 41
miles to the gallon.
Kind of makes you proud.
A tired-looking dog
wandered into the yard. I could tell from her collar and
well-fed belly that he had a home.
She followed me into
the house, down the hall, and fell asleep on some
beanbag chairs in our son's playroom.
An hour later, she
went to the door, and I let her out.
The next day she was
back, resumed her position in the playroom, and slept
for an hour. This continued for several weeks.
Curious, I pinned a
note to her collar: "Every afternoon your dog comes to
my house for a nap."
The next day she
arrived with a different note pinned to her collar: "She
lives in a home with ten children―she's just trying to
catch up on her sleep. Can I come with her tomorrow?"
Did you hear about the thief who
hijacked a truckload of Viagra?
The judge called him a hardened criminal.
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