Irradiated Food Causes “Severe Neurological Disease”

Food irradiation is a process by which food is exposed to ionizing radiation to destroy microorganisms, bacteria, viruses, or insects that might be present in the food.  One of the purposes for food irradiation is to prolong the shelf-life of food.  It is also used  to delay the ripening of fruits or the sprouting of vegetables.

The new study arose from a mysterious affliction of pregnant cats.  A company testing the effects of irradiated food on growth and development reported that some cats fed such a diet developed severe neurological dysfunction, including movement disorders, vision loss and paralysis.

“After being on the diet for three to four months, the pregnant cats started to develop progressive neurological disease,” says Duncan, a professor of medical sciences at the UW-Madison School of Veterinary Medicine.

Myelin is a fatty substance that forms a sheath for nerve fibers, known as axons, and facilitates the conduction of nerve signals. Its loss through disease causes impairment of sensation, movement, cognition and other functions, depending on which nerves are affected.

The afflicted cats were shown to have severe and widely distributed demyelination of the central nervous system. In cats removed from the diet, demyelinated axons slowly became remyelinated, but the restored myelin sheaths were still not as thick as healthy myelin.

In this report, the central point is that the cats recovered slowly from the “severe neurological dysfunctions” after they stopped eating irradiated food.   The researchers totally disregarded the fact that irradiation caused the damage to begin with.
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TeaBagging: The Arch-Capitalists’ Pseudo-Popular, Pseudo-Democratic, Pseudo-Patriotic Assault On Real Democracy

The following is by Guest Blogger, 5thstate.  Enjoy!

Modern Times Teabaggers

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The Adventure Begins: From to Tea to Teabags.

Supposedly, from a single “Howard Beal”-like rant on February 19, 2009, from trader, turned CNBC “on-air editor,” Rick Santelli about how the Homeowner’s Affordability and Stability Plan promoted the “bad behavior” of foreclosed homeowners, a “grassroots” nationwide anti-tax “Tea Party” movement was born.

Well, not quite.

It was the ardent Libertarian supporters of Republican presidential hopeful Ron Paul who revived the “Tea Party” banner (under which to protest government fiscal policy) that was first applied by proto-revolutionary American colonials in 1773.

The spirit and efficacy of the “Tea Party” slogan was however severely diminished when the genuinely grassroots “Paultards” publicity scheme to dump tea into Boston harbor from a Ron Paul-emblazoned blimp literally never got off the ground.

The cost of the blimp hire was $100,000.  Strangely not even 10,000 supposedly fiscally responsible Libertarians could pony up the ten dollars-each needed to change American political history forever!

So the “Tea Party” as the Libertarians had envisaged it retired, deflated, to a rusty shed at the edge of the political scene — much like Ron Paul himself, actually.

The Gathering Storm in a Teacup.

But as the summer of 2008 entered its last months, the political winds changed dramatically:  unregulated free-market teacups began rattling as the cucumber canapés of finance suddenly went limp and soggy.

Dark clouds burst over the laissez-faire Republican picnic whilst ants of despair invaded the egg-and-watercress sandwiches of certitude!  The stock market headed for the basement like a half-dressed slasher movie teenager, and the housing market collapsed like an outsourced KBR deck-chair.

As the Republicans demanded that the band play louder to drown out the noise of breaking capitalist crockery and tried to calm the panicking masses by pointing out that the picnic hadn’t been attacked by swarms of killer bees lately, a dark-skinned community organizer (who the Grand Old Party-ers had assumed was there to serve sandwiches) stepped forward with ideas on how to clean up the mess and get the party swinging again—and to the Republicans’ dismay the people listened.

Desperate to distract the crowd from the smooth-tongued party-crasher, the Republicans tried throwing cream cakes and cocktail sausages at him, but none of them stuck.

Then they shoved an Alaskan Hoochie-Coochie dancer onto the stage but, whilst easy on the eyes, she couldn’t sing or dance and she was obviously just a prick-tease — for all her winking and sassiness she wasn’t going to put out for anything less than designer clothes, a swank apartment, an armored limo, and a private jet.

For the frat-house Republicans, the party was over.

Their atomic-wedgie antics and beer-binging on the family credit card had run their natural course.

Dad’s classic Ferrari was backwards in a ditch; Mom’s lingerie was scattered around the garden; half a dozen girls were knocked-out on ‘rufies’ and knocked-up; someone had puked on the dog; the record player was skipping on “Where Eagles Soar”; and the Skull & Bones had run out of freshman “pledges” they usually could force make the place look respectable again.

Meanwhile everyone else had gone next door with the cool black kid and partied with the wonks, the mathletes, the A/V club with their cool viral videos, and their rockstar/Hollywood friends — and had the best party ever!

Then the cool black kid was voted Prom King, and the wonky chick the Jocks had been calling a bitch and a lesbian since her freshman year became President of the Student Council, and everyone clapped and cheered — except the Jocks and their blond-haired pep squad who began slapping each other in an epic blame snit.

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Turley: ‘Disturbing’ for Obama to call torture a ‘technique’

Raw Story

Constitutional law professor Jonathan Turley told MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow that President Obama’s suggestion that waterboarding yielded valuable information was “disturbing.” The President told reporters that he thought “waterboarding was torture” during a Wednesday news conference but also implied that reliable intelligence was gained from the interrogation technique.

“It is obviously disturbing to hear torture referred to by the president as a technique. It is like saying bank robbery is a technique for withdrawing money from the bank. It is not a technique. It is a crime,” said Turley. “The idea or the notion that torture works is expressly rejected in treaties we have signed, in cases we have prosecuted. It does not matter what is yielded in torture.”

I found myself yelling at my TV during the speech by President Obama. This issue enrages me. As long as our leaders and the press continue to use ambiguous, warm and fuzzy terms, such as “enhanced interrogations”, and “techniques”, or worse yet, calling what they did a “mistake”, instead of calling it what it is—“torture” and a CRIME—nothing is going to happen to hold these people who set this entire thing in motion accountable for their crimes. They have done SO much damage to this country.

None of this is secret any more (though there could still be a lot we don’t even know yet..). The world is watching. The US will have NO credibility going forward in the future, and we will not not be able to continue to lead holding the high moral ground if the laws are not enforced and our system allowed to work. We will NOT be able to condemn, or hold other countries to account for doing the same thing. This country has been made LESS safe, and our soldiers are now at even greater risk. 

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Senator Webb Seeks To Fix Our Broken, Disgraceful Prison System

We have 2.3 million people behind bars here in the United States.  There has been a huge growth in incarceration since the 1980’s. Is it any wonder that human rights organizations are taking issue with what they call  “a new form of inhumane exploitation.”   

Many are the result of non-violent crimes.  Research shows that 60% of the inmates in state prisons, are serving time for a drug offense with no prior history of violence .  For the people that have invested in the prison system, it is like striking it rich.  They have an unlimited workforce which gets paid only 25 cents an hour – without the hassle of wondering if the workers are going to show up on time, or call off sick.  This has prompted action by Senator Webb, who feels now is the time to get this solved.

Calling the US criminal justice system “a national disgrace,” US Senators urged for a top-to-bottom review with an eye on reforms aimed at reducing America’s massive prison population.

Democratic Senator Jim Webb, backed by Republican Senator Arlen Specter, introduced legislation to create a blue-ribbon panel that would conduct an 18-month assessment and offer concrete recommendations for reform.

“America’s criminal justice system has deteriorated to the point that it is a national disgrace,” Webb said, noting that the United States has five percent of the world’s population but 25 percent of the world’s prisoners.

The Virginia lawmaker noted soaring numbers of drug offenders in prison, and charged that four times more mentally ill people are incarcerated than housed in mental health hospitals.

This is what Joe Sheridan/The Liberal Perspective had to say and it deserves the all caps format he put it in:


The Senator points out that “one out of every 31 adults in the U. S. is in prison, in jail or on supervised release.”

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Gawker Ambushed Bill O’Reilly’s Ambusher, Jesse Watters

Bill O’Reilly’s ambusher, Jesse Watters has met his match when it comes to Gawker.  Gawker is on the look out for Mr. Watters, the producer that Bill O’Reilly he sends out to lie in wait for his intended target or enemies as Bill likes to refer to them.  So Gawker went to Jesse’s building in Long Island to find him, which is his last known address.  To give him a taste of his own medicine.

Watters, as you may have read, likes to sneak up on people without warning and ask them questions so that O’Reilly can air video of his enemies looking aggrieved and flustered. He’s done it to the New Yorker’s Hendrik Hertzberg, the Washington Post’s William Arkin, Think Progress’ Amanda Terkel, and others. Watters tailed Arkin for an hour-and-a-half, from Vermont to Massachusetts, and attempted to interview him in front of his children (Fox, always gracious, digitally obscured their faces). He famously followed Terkel, who is a rather slight young woman, for two hours from Washington, D.C., to rural Virginia on a weekend getaway. In all of the above cases, Watters’ intent was to question his targets about things they had said or written.

In a recent New York Times story, Fox attempted justify its tactics by saying that it invited the targets to appear on O’Reilly’s program, and that they had declined. Since O’Reilly’s desire was to force them to defend their ideas to him, the only other option was to seek them out, without warning, at their homes or public places. As Watters put it in a blog post quoted by the Times: “If they don’t come to us, we’ll go to them.” This is, at least in the case of Terkel and Hertzberg, a lie: Neither of them received an invitation to go on the program before Watters showed up with his camera. 

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Catch the wave – Open Thread

So…., what is it?

This photo came to me in an email. This is what it said:

Nature is amazing! The water froze the instant the wave broke through the ice.  That’s what it is like in Lake Michigan where it is the coldest weather in decades.  Water freezes the instant  it comes in contact with the air.  The temperature of the water is already some degrees below freezing.

Just look at how the wave froze in mid-air!!!


UPDATE: The photos were actually taken in Antarctica, and represent ice formed over time and uplifted by glaciation.

Thanks to Zoo commenter “imustbeinwonderland” for the clarification.


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Gov. Sebelius Vetoes Bovine Growth Hormone Labeling Bill!!

We have a victory in Kansas.  As one of her last duties, Governor Sebelius vetoed a bill that would have “made it more difficult for dairy farmers who don’t use recombinant bovine growth hormone (rbGH) to label their milk as such,” said Dr. Michael Hansen, senior scientist at Consumers Union, nonprofit publisher of Consumer Reports.

The Governor’s office sent out a press release late this afternoon, explaining why she vetoed the bill:

“…the Bill before me…provides for changes in dairy labeling that could make it more difficult to provide consumers with clear information. The milk labeling provisions negatively impact a dairy producer’s ability to inform consumers that milk is from cows not treated with recombinant bovine growth hormone (rBST).”

“Supporters of the bill claim it’s necessary to protect consumers from false or misleading information. Yet there has been overwhelming opposition by consumer groups, small dairy producers and retailers to this proposed legislation. Therefore, pursuant to Article 2, Section 14 of the Constitution of the State of Kansas, I veto HB 2121.”

The fact that Governor Sebelius listened to the concerns of so many groups, such as the, National Family Farm Coalition, Oregon Physicians for Social Responsibility, Organic Farming Research Foundation, Sierra Club and citizens then decided to veto the bill – gives me hope that she will be a great asset in her new position to head the Department of Heath and Human Services, which overseas the FDA. is reporting a growing movement against the Bovine Growth Hormone in dairy products, due to consumer demand.

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Left Brain v Right Brain Test

The majority of people will see the dancer moving counter-clockwise that means you are using the left side of your brain.

If the dancer is moving clockwise you are using the right side of your brain.  Try to concentrate and see if she changes direction.


This theory of the structure and functions of the mind suggests that the two different sides of the brain control two different “modes” of thinking. It also suggests that each of us prefers one mode over the other.


Experimentation has shown that the two different sides, or hemispheres, of the brain are responsible for different manners of thinking. The following table illustrates the differences between left-brain and right-brain thinking:


Language:  grammar/vocabulary

Left hemisphere only:  direct fact retrieval
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A Thank You Letter to the GOP – Open Thread

Dear GOP,

Thank you for becoming the Party of No. Thank you for allowing Rush Limbaugh to be your fearless (feckless?) leader. Thank you for continually showing your ignorance of – and obstruction on – every topic relevant to the American people. Thank you for pushing out any moderate elected Republican and showing that your ongoing move to the far end of the rightosphere perpetuates your continued downward spiral into complete irrelevance.

Don’t ever change.



p.s. Be sure to catch our new posts below.

Michele Bachmann Has a New Fan Club

Why do we find Representative Bachmann so fascinating? Perhaps because she gives the rest of us hope that no matter how crazy we or our crazy relatives are there’s hope that someday we can achieve a position of power.

During her latest head scratching event Bachmann claims that it’s interesting that the last swine flu outbreak also occurred during a “Democrat” administration. Although Think Progress points out that in fact the last swine flu outbreak started during Gerald Ford’s presidency in February of 1976 and not under Jimmy Carter as she stated. But that’s not a problem because she claims she wasn’t blaming either Jimmy Carter or President Obama at all. It’s just “interesting”.

Anyway a new site “BACHMANN WATCH, Michele Bachmann vs. The Truth” has been started by the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee for those of us who appreciate all the entertainment or whatever it is she provides. We can all look forward to the day this site closes.

What is your favorite Sci-Fi Movie? — open thread

I’m a Sci-Fi fanatic, I love a good sci-fi flick.  So for me, I don’t just have one favorite.  I was hooked from the very first episode of Star Trek when I was little.   When Sci-Fi hit the big screen, I was thrilled.  Star Wars came out in 1977, then Alien & Star Trek’s “The Motion Picture” made their appearance in 1979.   I was in heaven that year, I am a fan of both movies.  I liked Star Wars, but not as much as I liked these two.  The cast of Alien was incredible; Sigourney Weaver made me a fan of all four movies.

The trailer of all the best scenes in the movie.  Video from Movi3Trail3r.

This is one of my favorite scenes from The Wrath of Kahn – second Star Trek movie.  Video from chargr2004.

Another favorite of mine is the Matrix, I like the first in the trilogy.  My daughter’s generation likes the Resident Evil movies.

DHS Is Declaring Public Health Emergency For Swine Flu


The United States stepped up preparations for a possible swine flu epidemic, and Canada confirmed its first cases on Sunday as researchers worked to determine how contagious the virus could be.

In Washington, the head of the Centers for Disease Control said 20 cases had been confirmed in five U.S. states by noon Sunday. The largest number of cases was in New York, where the CDC confirmed cases in eight students at a preparatory school in that city, Mayor Michael Bloomberg said Sunday.

Another seven cases have been confirmed in California, two each in Kansas and Texas and one in Ohio, said Dr. Richard Besser, the CDC’s acting director. Only one person has had to be hospitalized, but Besser said authorities are likely to see “a broader spectrum of disease” in the days ahead.

GOP Hoekstra: Not Concerned That Interrogation Program Was Based On Chinese Communist Torture Methods

Hoekstra goes even further, stating that Democrats should have reported their concerns about the Interrogation Program to their designated Majority Leader. Also, they would not have been leaking classified information.

It’s interesting that the Republicans like to call Obama a communist, but they are the ones who approved using Communist Torture Techniques.   It’s also disturbing that Hoekstra’s committee reviewed the program, did what they believed in, and he feels that the Interrogation Program met U.S. law.  WOW and double wow.  It makes me wonder how they can sleep at night.

DailyKos: CA Dems Pass Resolution to Impeach Judge Bybee

Several weeks of hard work have paid off, and the California Democratic Party, the largest Democratic Party in the country, is poised to provide a major tool in the fight for justice and accountability for the Bush torture regime. The Resolutions Committee included on their consent calendar the resolution to begin a Congressional inquiry into Judge Jay Bybee and other lawyers who wrote opinions justifying and providing the fig leaf of a rationale for torture, with all punishments allowable under the law, including impeachment.

UPDATE: It passed moments ago. Yes!!!!

Without the release of the OLC memo from August 1, 2002, showing Bybee admitting that waterboarding gives the impression of imminent death and allowing it anyway, showing Bybee allowing the CIA to put detainees in a small box with bugs in a Room 101-style exploitation of phobias, I’m not sure this resolution would have passed. A few weeks back, John Heaner, a party activist in the San Fernando Valley, offered the resolution, prior to the release of the memos.

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