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Posts by exDemMom

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  • At Age 3 — Transitioning From Jack To Jackie (NPR)

    07/04/2015 9:43:34 AM PDT · 17 of 42
    exDemMom to Drango

    More child abuse. Wonderful. /s

  • Chick-fil-A's secret to becoming America's favorite restaurant chain

    07/03/2015 7:08:17 AM PDT · 17 of 50
    exDemMom to SeekAndFind

    From reading through the comments on this thread, I know that I am not a heretic when I say that I don’t particularly like Chick-fil-A food. I only get it when there is no alternative.

    As far as I’m concerned, KFC chicken is the best—it is my guilty pleasure.

  • Pro-Life People: When Debating Abortion, Avoid This Embarrassingly Common Logical Mistake

    07/03/2015 7:04:18 AM PDT · 70 of 70
    exDemMom to bert

    Put it this way: if more people understood that brain death is NOT a coma or vegetative state or whatever else a brain-damaged state is called, then it would have been far more difficult for Terry’s “husband” to get away with murdering her.

    The media purposely obfuscates the definitions of brain death, coma, etc., because they want people to think there is no difference between killing a comatose person and removing a brain-dead deceased person from a respirator. We all know the major media is pro-death.

    One of the reasons I try to educate people on that point is to prevent more murders of innocent people like Terry.

  • Father of Young Leukemia Survivor Reacts to New Vaccine law

    07/03/2015 6:54:35 AM PDT · 13 of 14
    exDemMom to CdMGuy

    I will answer you here, rather than in the FRmail.

    I do not speak “dogmatically”; I am a medical researcher, and one of my areas of expertise is vaccines. I do not *ever* post information that cannot be verified within the body of legitimate medical literature.

    There are some very dedicated anti-vax activists who post a plethora of misinformation about vaccines. Like any propagandists, they mix enough valid information with their lies to be able to appear knowledgeable about the subject to people who are unfamiliar with it. Some of those activists engage in posting misinformation in comments section of on-line vaccine related articles published by news organizations. They are very active in this effort, to the point that they look more numerous than they actually are.

    Anti-vax activism has existed ever since the first vaccine against smallpox was invented. Their rationale was that protecting people from dying of diseases goes against the will of God, since God wouldn’t have created those diseases if He didn’t intend for us to die from them. These days, anti-vaxxers do not use the will of God as a justification—they are more likely to appeal to Gaia. Despite any propagandistic misuse of medical literature to push their anti-vax agenda, their objection is just as ideological.

    One way to determine the quality of information posted on the internet is to pull up the references (which should be peer-reviewed articles linked into a reliable database such as PubMed) and read them to see if they really say what the authors of the supposed information claim it says. Anti-vax website designers, however, count on the fact that their target audience does not know how to find medical literature, and wouldn’t understand it if they did find it.

  • Father of Young Leukemia Survivor Reacts to New Vaccine law

    07/03/2015 6:39:19 AM PDT · 12 of 14
    exDemMom to Carry_Okie
    Influenza vaccine is a really difficult one. It works quite well against the specific viruses it was designed to work against (usually 3 or 4 different viruses). However, influenza viruses change so rapidly that the specific viruses targeted by the vaccine can disappear from circulation by the time flu season hits. That is what happened this year--the H3N2 component of the vaccine became obsolete before flu season hit.

    Most vaccines, however, target viruses that are not prone to rapid change. And they work very well. In the 1980s, I was vaccinated for measles and rubella. In the 1990s, I was vaccinated for hep A and B. A couple of weeks ago, I had titers measured for measles, mumps, rubella, chickenpox, hep A and hep B, and I am immune against all of them. (I had mumps, chickenpox, and shingles, which accounts for those immunities.)

    I also receive a flu vaccine every year (mandatory employment requirement) and I have never had the flu, despite the variable effectiveness of the vaccine.

  • This One Eye Color Is aAsociated with Higher Rates of Alcohol Dependence

    07/03/2015 6:28:06 AM PDT · 52 of 55
    exDemMom to Durus

    You do not need to identify the genes associated with a specific trait to determine that a trait has a strong genetic component. That determination is made by studies of the incidence of the trait. There are still many genetic diseases where specific genes involved have not been identified.

    The first geneticist, Gregor Mendel, did a vast body of genetics research without ever knowing what a gene or DNA was.

  • Pro-Life People: When Debating Abortion, Avoid This Embarrassingly Common Logical Mistake

    07/03/2015 6:17:12 AM PDT · 68 of 70
    exDemMom to Arthur McGowan
    Destroy the nervous system, and the human being is gone--even if the rest of the body can function on a respirator for a time.

    Gratuitous assertion. Question-begging.

    It is hardly gratuitous. When brain death occurs, the person is pronounced dead. The heart can keep beating for a while, since it is not directly controlled by the brain, but it will stop beating shortly after artificial respiration is stopped. The other organ systems in the body shut down when brain death occurs, regardless of artificial respiration.

    My reasoning is that if cessation of brain activity is the moment of death, then a person should be considered to exist as a person when observable brain activity takes place. When the brain--even a tiny embryonic brain--is active, the person is aware. The brain formation process occurs between weeks 2 and 5 after contraception. Once the brain is formed, brain development continues until about age 25.

  • Pro-Life People: When Debating Abortion, Avoid This Embarrassingly Common Logical Mistake

    07/03/2015 6:03:56 AM PDT · 67 of 70
    exDemMom to bert
    Heresy........ antiTerry statement

    Not at all. Terry was brain damaged, not brain dead. Her brain was still acting as the master controller of her body, and she was somewhat aware. I think what was done to her is horrific.

    When people become brain dead, their brain literally is a dead piece of flesh in their head. It receives no blood, it emits no electrical or chemical signals--it might as well be a lump of inert clay in the head. The person is pronounced dead when it is determined that brain death has occurred.

  • This One Eye Color Is aAsociated with Higher Rates of Alcohol Dependence

    07/03/2015 5:56:11 AM PDT · 51 of 55
    exDemMom to Durus
    While there have often been claims of genetic predilections to alcohol/drug dependence there is no actual proof that such a gene exists.

    The actual genes do not have to be identified to determine that there is a strong genetic component to addiction, but there is enough evidence to suggest that several genes are involved. Like most genetic traits, however, environment also has a strong influence.

    In the case of alcoholism, different forms of genes responsible for alcohol metabolism are associated with different risks of development of alcoholism.

  • It’s Not Guns: It’s Big Pharma

    07/02/2015 9:21:39 AM PDT · 8 of 12
    exDemMom to Fay

    I think the author and those he quotes may be confusing cause and effect here. People are prescribed the psychoactive drugs precisely because they do have mental issues. If they act out on the mental issues, it is not because of the drugs—it is because the preexisting mental issues are not adequately controlled.

    It’s kind of like observing that a disproportionate number of obese people drink diet soda, and then concluding that diet soda causes obesity.

    That said, I do not like the propensity to prescribe drugs without first addressing the behavioral issues. Behavior therapy has some success in treating certain mental disorders. (Some mental illnesses, like schizophrenia, cannot be treated without drugs, though.)

  • This One Eye Color Is aAsociated with Higher Rates of Alcohol Dependence

    07/02/2015 6:12:51 AM PDT · 25 of 55
    exDemMom to Oratam

    What this most likely means is that genes involved in alcohol/substance dependency are located on the same chromosome as genes that control eye color. When genes for different traits are located on the same chromosome, they are called “linked genes.” Other than the physical proximity, the genes have nothing to do with each other. Having green eyes does not cause alcoholism/substance abuse.

  • Father of Young Leukemia Survivor Reacts to New Vaccine law

    07/01/2015 5:00:37 PM PDT · 8 of 14
    exDemMom to CdMGuy
    The strangest thing I saw on TV here in So Cal was a lady doctor discussing the medical exemption contained in the new law. She said that if a sibling has autism then another sibling would be exempt from the vaccination requirement.

    I do not see how a genuine doctor armed with the facts could make such a statement. I don't know anything about her, but I have to wonder if she is one of those kooks who, despite a medical education, decided to go down the path of quackery. Or maybe her "Dr." degree is in a highly questionable pseudoscience discipline like "naturopathy."

    Wow, and all this time the medical profession keeps claiming that vaccinations are not the cause of autism. Can someone explain that, or has this doctor just admitted that vaccinations are a possible cause of autism?

    Millions of dollars have been wasted as a result of that dishonest quack who made the claim that vaccines cause autism. That is money that could have been used to research the genetic aberrations that really do cause autism, but instead was wasted to try to replicate that bogus claim.

    Vaccines do not cause autism. Vaccine-preventable diseases, however, can cause brain damage which does cause learning disabilities and behavioral abnormalities. Autistic children and their siblings need vaccines just as much as any other children do.

  • Pro-Life People: When Debating Abortion, Avoid This Embarrassingly Common Logical Mistake

    07/01/2015 5:03:34 AM PDT · 47 of 70
    exDemMom to Arthur McGowan
    A functioning nervous system is NOT the essence of a “human being,” any more than an arm or a leg.

    Destroy an arm or leg, and the human being still exists. Destroy the nervous system, and the human being is gone--even if the rest of the body can function on a respirator for a time.

    Or, to put it another way, any organ can be transplanted into a person, and that person will remain the same fundamental person he/she always has been. But if a brain transplant were to take place, the essence of the person would be the person from which the brain came, not the body into which the brain was transplanted.

    A cell may be human, but if it is not a cell which, if not deliberately destroyed, would grow into a baby, it is not a human being

    *Any* human cell has the ability to grow into an embryo, given the right set of chemical signals. The chemical signals that drive the development of an embryo aren't even present in all products of conception. Only about 10-15% of fertilizations survive until birth (in the absence of abortion).

    This is why I dislike philosophical measures of when it is or is not okay to kill. You can choose any arbitrary point if you avoid objective science, and then the pro-abort/pro-life debate devolves into an argument over which arbitrary point is superior. OTOH, the presence of awareness is something that can be objectively determined based on the status of development.

  • Pro-Life People: When Debating Abortion, Avoid This Embarrassingly Common Logical Mistake

    07/01/2015 4:42:32 AM PDT · 40 of 70
    exDemMom to Norm Lenhart
    You have a baby and you have people that want to kill it.

    And that is why any pro-lifer engaged in a debate over abortion should stay away from discussing philosophy. Philosophy is a wishy-washy subject that anyone can use to justify any point of view.

    Pro-aborts know that abortion kills a human being. That is why they push debates into discussions of philosophy rather than of science or morality. Pro-lifers should avoid falling into that trap.

    Instead of falling for the philosophical discussion, pro-lifers should be putting pro-aborts on the defensive. Obviously, pro-aborts choose some arbitrary point at which they will concede that a baby is human because they have fallen for the line that the totality of women's rights is contained within the "right" to abortion. They consider the use of contraception (which requires a bit of forethought) as infringing on their right to have spontaneous sex any time they feel in the mood. By philosophically choosing arbitrary measures of humanity, they can go ahead and use abortion as primary birth control without feeling guilty about killing their babies.

    There is a lot of stigma surrounding abortion; pro-aborts are now engaging in campaigns to attempt to reduce the stigma. Keep hammering them on the science, and they will keep feeling the pressure of stigma. If destroying human life doesn't bother them, being shunned does.

  • Pro-Life People: When Debating Abortion, Avoid This Embarrassingly Common Logical Mistake

    07/01/2015 4:29:23 AM PDT · 38 of 70
    exDemMom to palmer
    I agree. Life has got to have some essence and awareness and autonomy are a good definition.

    Indeed. As a scientist, I have grown countless millions of human cells in the lab. They are undeniably alive, and every bit of their DNA is human. Given the right stimuli, they could even become embryos. Despite the fact that they are indisputably human, alive, and have the potential to become embryos, killing them does not constitute killing human beings. That is because those cells have no central nervous system that makes them aware of being alive. Scientifically, there is no difference in "human being" vs. "not human being" other than the presence of a functional nervous system.

  • Pro-Life People: When Debating Abortion, Avoid This Embarrassingly Common Logical Mistake

    07/01/2015 3:02:33 AM PDT · 26 of 70
    exDemMom to kathsua

    I do not see what the supposed logical fallacy of the continuum is.

    There is a problem with using a criterion such as when someone can think as the dividing line between when it is okay to kill that person and when it isn’t. What is meant by “think”? Babies certainly do not display much of a thought process, and some people arguably do not ever learn to think. There are pro-aborts who use various milestones of brain development as their “cut-off” for when it is okay to kill a kid—including milestones that do not happen until about age 4-1/2 to 5 years. One could even push the cut-off between okay and not okay to kill to age 25—that is when the brain finally reaches maturity and is no longer developing.

    I would push for the existence of awareness, regardless of how developed the brain is. The brain forms between 2 and 5 weeks after conception. It has no on-off switch: as soon as cells differentiate into being brain cells, they function as brain cells. They sense stimuli exterior to the body, they make neural connections, they sense and guide bodily processes. Those various brain activities together form the awareness of being alive. So, after sometime between weeks 2 and 5 after conception, the baby is quite aware and capable of feeling the pain of abortion.

    You do not need to bring philosophy to pro-abort/pro-life debates (unless you are looking for a philosophical “loophole” that makes it okay to kill). The science of embryonic development tells us very clearly that an unborn baby is alive and aware.

  • What Anthony Kennedy and His Four Cronies Have Unleashed

    06/30/2015 3:18:49 AM PDT · 47 of 54
    exDemMom to isthisnickcool
    My prediction. You read it here first.

    It is probably correct. For one, only about 1 to 3% of the population identifies as "gay." For another, being "gay" is about a lifestyle more than a sexual orientation. And that lifestyle does not include monogamy, which seems to be very rare among homosexuals, especially male homosexuals.

  • Walker And Unions Battle Over Teachers Tenure

    06/30/2015 3:10:37 AM PDT · 4 of 13
    exDemMom to Cincinatus' Wife
    “Our strong history of academic freedom through faculty tenure has protected education in the UW System from political conflict and corruption for decades, ensuring that higher learning in Wisconsin can pursue the truth wherever it might lead.”

    I guess this guy Leson has not spent much time observing education in universities, even though he is a professor. Once you get away from the hard sciences and mathematics departments at universities, they are extremely politicized. They push the leftist agenda relentlessly, to the point where students who do not toe the socialist line are shunned and harassed, and may not get an education. The current socialist-heavy environment of most campuses is hardly conducive to the pursuit of truth that Leson mentioned.

    True, I am only familiar with MD and CA universities, but I do not think WI universities would be any different.

  • Meghan McCain talks marriage equality

    06/29/2015 2:56:46 AM PDT · 5 of 29
    exDemMom to 2ndDivisionVet

    Homosexuals have always had the same right as anyone else to marry someone with whom there is a reasonable expectation to procreate and have children naturally.

    Gay “marriage” is not about equal rights. Nor is it about love or one’s choice of sexual partner. It is about a tiny minority tearing down the institution of marriage because they do not wish to participate in it and, for some reason, that bothers them.

  • Scott Walker says most Americans support voter ID laws, which make it easier to vote harder to cheat

    06/29/2015 2:50:33 AM PDT · 3 of 12
    exDemMom to Cincinatus' Wife
    When asked for evidence that photo ID laws make it easier to vote, a Walker aide pointed to a modest increase in voter turnout in Wisconsin since the law was passed.

    Indeed, some studies, such as one from the U.S. Government Accountability Office, suggest photo ID laws may have contributed to a decrease in voter turnout in some states.

    Voter ID laws probably have both effects. They could increase voter turnout among those who sense that their votes prior to the laws were canceled out by voter fraud, while decreasing turnout by those committing the fraud.

    In 2012, more than 9 in 10 registered Wisconsin voters were estimated to have a valid form of photo ID. That left around 300,000 registered voters without a photo ID at the time. Mayer, who conducted the estimate, said it is unknown how many unregistered voters may lack the proper documents to obtain a free, state-issued ID.

    I do not believe those numbers. Considering the number of activities that require some form of ID, it is hard to imagine that *anyone* (of voting age) does not have ID. I think those "estimates" were pulled out of the air, like many "estimates" that leftists toss around to advance their agenda.

    As for the "harder to cheat" portion, Mayer conceded photo ID laws could be effective against in-person voter fraud. But he and others note that there have been few documented cases of in-person voter fraud.

    Considering that voter fraud overwhelming works in Democrats' and other socialists' favor, do we really expect cases of voter fraud to be documented? You hear the stories every election--for example, about boxes of voted ballots miraculously being "found," giving the victory to the Democrat. What Democrat, having won by fraud, is eager to document that fraud? For them, the ends justifies the means.

    I also don't buy the meme that voting needs to be made easier. I don't want people voting who are too lazy to take time to read the issues and study the candidates--i.e. the people who "benefit" from easy voting.

  • Marie Stopes doctor and nurses 'bungled woman's abortion then sent her home despite....

    06/28/2015 10:22:32 AM PDT · 5 of 5
    exDemMom to Morgana

    So, an extra death resulted from the abortion. Doesn’t that mean the procedure was more successful than usual?

  • No Conservatives, Legalizing Gay Marriage Doesn’t Mean Polygamy Is Next

    06/28/2015 10:03:03 AM PDT · 45 of 121
    exDemMom to Cementjungle
    Gays are seeking validation of their lifestyle, and they're not going to get that from just a marriage certificate. They want us to pretend it's a normal and healthy activity, and they want us to celebrate it.

    Indeed. Aside from the financial benefits, that is a large part of the push for gay "marriage."

    Maybe 15 years ago, when I was a student at UC Davis, a lesbian wrote to the campus newspaper stating exactly what you said. Her family did not accept her as normal. According to her faulty logic, if she could only get married to her girlfriend and make the relationship legal the way heterosexuals legalize their relationships, her family would realize that she is just as normal as any heterosexual.

    Tellingly, her argument did not contain any discussion of love--for her, the gay "marriage" issue was about being seen as normal, and had nothing to do with the actual relationship.

  • No Conservatives, Legalizing Gay Marriage Doesn’t Mean Polygamy Is Next

    06/28/2015 9:56:51 AM PDT · 32 of 121
    exDemMom to SeekAndFind

    Actually, Keith, the slippery slope is implicit both in the argument that marriage is anything anyone wants it to be and in the failure to recognize the biological basis of the legal framework surrounding marriage.

    Gays have wanted to share in what they perceive as the financial benefits of marriage (also, without recognizing that those financial benefits are meant to offset the costs of raising the offspring that marriages are supposed to produce). As a vehicle for gaining financial benefits, why shouldn’t any two people be allowed to marry? Why shouldn’t someone with terminal cancer be allowed to “marry” his business partner to avoid death taxes his business partner would otherwise have to pay upon his death? Why not polygamy? Why not have a big huge marriage of all of the board of directors of a large corporation so they can all share the tax benefits?

    As long as the Supreme Court has decreed that marriage is no more than a vehicle for legally avoiding or decreasing certain taxes, then what *are* the limits on who can get “married”?

  • Why can't the feds AND the states get out of Marriage?

    06/27/2015 7:36:20 AM PDT · 20 of 40
    exDemMom to MalPearce

    You cannot ignore the fact that the legal institution of marriage has one purpose: to protect the children resulting from that marriage. There is a whole body of law existing for that purpose, consisting of laws to ensure the legal distribution of property among the surviving spouse and progeny of that marriage, to ensure that property stays within the biological family, to ensure that the children are cared for, etc., in the case of the death of one spouse.

    A religious marriage with no legal foundation does not give any legal standing to resulting children. If both parents should die and there is no legal framework in place, those children are thrust upon the mercy of strangers—or they are thrown in the middle of family squabbles as the relatives fight over who gets to keep the wealth and who is stuck with the kids. Yes, I know, people should have a will—but how many actually do?

    Since secular marriage is about the legal framework existing to protect the children of such a marriage, the Supreme Court ruling that there is such as thing as same-sex “marriage” is nonsensical. Homosexual “friendships” cannot result in children, and homosexual lifestyles are inimical to the raising of children. Thus, for homosexuals to claim to be married is an impossibility.

    It is outrageous that the Supreme Court decided to invalidate real marriage to appease the mentally ill delusions of 1-2% of the population.

  • The EPA vs. Pennsylvania's minorities

    06/27/2015 7:17:08 AM PDT · 30 of 32
    exDemMom to Ben Ficklin
    When a nation's fertility rate begins to fall, incomes rise, and poverty recedes. Education expands and incomes rise. Health care improves and lifespans increase.

    You have the order slightly wrong there.

    The drop in fertility rate does not cause, but is a response to, higher incomes and better health care. When people do not have to worry that most or all of their kids might die before reaching adulthood, they invest their resources into raising a limited number of children. There is a bit of overlap, in that a generation of highly prolific people who have had large numbers of children because they expect most of them to die suddenly find themselves in the situation where the kids get vaccines and other health care and survive. Although a larger number of children than expected survive, they grow up and have smaller families than their parents. Even in Africa, where better healthcare has been slow to implement, the birth rate is dropping.

    This scenario has happened in every country that has become developed.

  • The EPA vs. Pennsylvania's minorities

    06/27/2015 4:13:29 AM PDT · 15 of 32
    exDemMom to Sherman Logan
    A completely undeveloped country can be quite unpolluted.

    I have not seen any evidence of that. Without development, people living off the land can cause massive damage to the ecosystem as they hunt and forage for basic sustenance, especially when their populations grow. Throughout history, species have become extinct and local ecosystems have been permanently altered. I've observed that, for the most part, environmental concern only originates from developed countries.

  • Did Scott Walker say forced ultrasounds to get an abortion are 'a cool thing'?

    06/27/2015 4:03:25 AM PDT · 7 of 12
    exDemMom to Cincinatus' Wife

    For the record, I do think it is cool to force abortionists to show their clients high quality ultrasound images of the children they are about to kill.

    Abortionists are allowed to engage in high-pressure deceitful sales tactics to sell their “services”, and for too long, they have been allowed to get away with calling their coercive practices “women’s rights.”

    Any measure designed to inhibit abortionists from lying to women is, IMO, cool.

  • The EPA vs. Pennsylvania's minorities

    06/27/2015 3:56:27 AM PDT · 11 of 32
    exDemMom to Cincinatus' Wife

    The less developed a country is, the more polluted it is. Only developed countries have enough money and resources to keep their environment clean. Furthermore, people only care about the environment when their basic needs are met.

    “Environmentalists” who oppose any and all development in the name of the environment are working actively towards the opposite of what they claim.

  • WHO: To Avoid MERS, Don’t Drink Camel Urine

    06/27/2015 3:19:20 AM PDT · 30 of 55
    exDemMom to nickcarraway
    This is why I stick with:

    Bears are not known to carry MERS.

  • Repeat abortions? Not at all. Call them “multiple abortions,” pro-abortionist insists

    06/25/2015 7:43:11 PM PDT · 3 of 4
    exDemMom to Morgana

    Mass abortion, mass murder.

    Changing the adjective does not make committing mass abortion any less horrific.

    It is very telling that one of the reasons women who have mass abortions shop around for abortionists is to avoid being told about birth control. They don’t want to use birth control. It is as I have always thought—they make the “choice” to have abortions long before they get pregnant.

    Abortion should not be paid for by anyone except the abortion client. Those who choose not to use (the far less expensive option of) contraceptives should not be able to force others to pay for their choice.

  • Saving Tigers is essential and important

    06/25/2015 2:38:39 AM PDT · 3 of 5
    exDemMom to OrthodoxIndianCatholic

    It will take time to teach people that the supposed magical properties of poached animal parts are imaginary. Likewise, it takes time to turn a culture that is accepting of poaching these beautiful animals against the practice. I have read of efforts to turn people’s attitudes around.

    The attitudes are changing, but slowly. It is mostly among young people that a more conservationist mentality is growing.

    Another factor that helps with conservation and environmentalism is development: the closer countries get to first world status, the more they become concerned about natural ecosystems.

    I’m all for aggressive measures to stamp out poaching. This article gives some hope that those measures are helping in parts of India.

  • Trans woman interrupts Obama at White House LGBT reception

    06/25/2015 2:30:15 AM PDT · 19 of 30
    exDemMom to WilliamIII
    ...the person who identified as a trans woman.

    Does that mean Obama was heckled by a woman dressed as a man?

    I get so tired of the media using gender nouns and pronouns incorrectly. It means you have to expend more effort than necessary to read and actually comprehend a story that really does not merit that level of effort.

  • Saying women should abstain unless they want children is “violence” says minister

    06/25/2015 2:26:04 AM PDT · 5 of 20
    exDemMom to Morgana

    The abortion industry has a very skewed view of violence. In order to distract from the horrific violence it commits upon innocent children every day, abortion promoters snatch at dust and moonbeams to claim that a whole slew of non-violent actions are actually violent.

    Black is white, up is down, wet is dry.

  • Republicans push back against proposed dietary guidelines

    06/24/2015 4:37:57 PM PDT · 6 of 12
    exDemMom to Olog-hai
    ...that eating a diet higher in vegetables and other plant-based foods is better for the environment than eating a diet based more on foods from animals.

    I seriously doubt that. That is one of those memes that militant vegetarians have been repeating for decades, but no one ever produces evidence to support it. Animals eat plants that are inedible to humans, and convert them to food. If we were to switch the portion of calories and protein that we now get from animals to plant sources instead, a lot more land would have to be cultivated--and that has an environmental impact.

    Also, so-called "organic" farming is not very environmentally friendly. The high rate of crop loss using "organic" methods means that more land must be cultivated to produce the same amount of food that can be grown using non-"organic" methods.

    The more land that is cultivated, the less wild plant growth there is to support wildlife.

  • Importing a Potential Epidemic

    06/24/2015 4:29:15 AM PDT · 4 of 8
    exDemMom to SJackson
    Dengue fever, as well as the equally grim affliction known as the chikungunya [27] virus, are spread by mosquitos.

    Dengue can kill you. Chikungunya only makes you wish it would kill you due to its unpleasantness.

  • Bay Area monk accused of stabbing fellow monk

    06/23/2015 8:07:26 PM PDT · 7 of 17
    exDemMom to conservativegranny
    Gheez. Even the Buddhist monks are going nuts now:(

    I once saw a video on TV of two rival sects of Buddhist monks meeting each other in the street and getting into a HUGE brawl. There were hundreds of monks attacking each other.

    I guess that vow of peace gets a bit frayed at times.

  • Teeth found near Tel Aviv point to a new prehistoric human species

    06/22/2015 3:42:19 AM PDT · 30 of 60
    exDemMom to TontoKowalski
    I think the trend now is that there is no such thing as "race."

    Genetically, all humans are 99% identical. For the most part, what we see as "race" is differences in the distribution of gene variants. For instance, brown hair occurs more in one population than in another. A population that has a high number of a set of gene variants is said to be a "race."

  • The sixth mass extinction on Earth has officially begun and could threaten humanity's existence

    06/20/2015 3:56:58 AM PDT · 64 of 160
    exDemMom to Cincinatus' Wife
    The big exception is the United States, which is a center of over-consumption and whose population continues growing because of a relatively high birthrate (average family size about 2.1 children, compared with 1.4 in Italy and Spain and 1.3 in Germany and Japan) and high immigra-tion rate (4 per thousand, with Italy the same, Spain 7, Germany 0, and Japan 0). The nation has recently been in the strange position of debating immigration policy without ever discussing population policy...."

    The highest rates of population growth are in 3rd world countries. The more miserable and polluted countries are, the higher the birth rate.

    Since the developed countries have the lowest birthrates and are the least polluted, whenever I see bilge like that posted above, I conclude that it was concocted for political purposes. If the authors of those "studies" were truly concerned about pollution and overpopulation, they would look at the fact that countries of the first world are cleaner, have lower birthrates, do more about protecting endangered species, etc., and conclude that we need to bring the third world countries up to our level, not try to push us down to theirs. But of course, their concerns are never what they state they are. They want to force everyone to live like serfs while they set themselves up as kings--in other words, they are trying to force socialism on us by any means necessary.

  • WH Science Adviser: ‘Cars, Trucks and Planes Are Going to Have to Run on Electricity, Biofuels or…’

    06/19/2015 8:59:57 PM PDT · 23 of 23
    exDemMom to PIF

    In other words, those “alternatives” are not very efficient sources of energy.

    Thanks for the explanation.

  • Biologists Invoke the Past in Modern Bacteria

    06/19/2015 4:20:47 AM PDT · 4 of 5
    exDemMom to LibWhacker
    These survivor strains must have evolved ways to overcome the problems caused by the outdated protein. But how?

    This is probably quibbling, but I object strongly to this kind of language. The language implies that the bacteria somehow choose how to evolve. In reality, they do no such thing.

    Evolution is a force that acts upon living organisms. The DNA is constantly mutating at random, and those mutations do not have much effect in a static environment--the "bad" mutations do not persist, the "good" mutations tend to spread through the population, and the "neutral" mutations may or may not persist since they (neutral changes) have no effect on the organism.

    While this article implies that the bacteria used different strategies to overcome the introduction of a less than optimal EF-Tu, in reality, due to the random nature of mutation, some of the bacteria happened to have mutations in the regulatory regions of the EF-Tu gene, causing them to make more of it, which would overcome the effects of decreased binding affinity. Other bacteria happened to have mutations in the coding regions of other proteins that work with EF-Tu that caused those proteins to interact better with the EF-Tu.

    All of the "adaptive" changes were random. The bacteria chose none of them.

    Sorry about the long post and heavy use of technical language. It's just that this idea that organisms guide their own evolution really irks me, since evolution is not guided by anything other than physical forces.

  • NARAL Pro-Choice America Hits GOP Frontrunner Walker In New TV Ad Campaign

    06/18/2015 7:19:19 PM PDT · 14 of 15
    exDemMom to Cincinatus' Wife

    He could turn it around on them and state that yes, he does support a woman’s right to be fully informed about pregnancy and to not be exploited by those who want to get rich by killing her innocent baby.

    As a woman, I get extremely tired of hearing how abortion is about “making health-care choices.” Birth-control abortion has nothing to do with health-care.

  • WH Science Adviser: ‘Cars, Trucks and Planes Are Going to Have to Run on Electricity, Biofuels or…’

    06/17/2015 8:22:44 PM PDT · 13 of 23
    exDemMom to Olog-hai

    So... how are the electricity and hydrogen going to be produced, what is the fuel source for those?

    And how much fuel will it require to grow all the biofuel, and how much land will that require to be cultivated?

  • Sports Fishing Opens Evolutionary Can Of Worms

    06/17/2015 8:18:50 PM PDT · 13 of 53
    exDemMom to nickcarraway

    Basic evolutionary principle: traits that are selected against do not persist, while those that are selected for tend to spread throughout the population.

    Size limits on fish that may be caught and kept has also had an effect on fish size. Fish that grow to be smaller than the size limit reproduce more because the larger fish are all caught.

  • Murder charge dropped in abortion pill case – Planned Parenthood “glad”

    06/16/2015 8:32:28 PM PDT · 5 of 6
    exDemMom to a fool in paradise

    I’ve read about groups selling self-abortion kits... nothing sounds safe about that at all.

    Devaluing human life is the goal.

    Abortion proponents don’t care if it is “safe” (for the survivor). They promote baby killing—if they are so cold-blooded towards the most innocent among us, who can believe they care about anyone?

  • Our sweet big kitty just died

    06/16/2015 7:33:00 PM PDT · 55 of 99
    exDemMom to LonePalm

    I’m so sorry about your loss.

    I’m sure she will be waiting for you at the Rainbow Bridge, like so many of mine are.

  • Congress paddles toward brink of a government shutdown

    06/16/2015 4:44:40 AM PDT · 8 of 20
    exDemMom to GIdget2004

    The military has already taken quite a few hits.

    Somehow, the Democrats can never imagine cutting any of the social (i.e. redistributionist) spending. It has ballooned during Obama’s reign, but Democrats refuse to touch it.

  • Men really ARE the weaker sex: Harmful DNA affects heart and brain health

    06/15/2015 6:26:00 PM PDT · 3 of 20
    exDemMom to rickmichaels

    The fact that males die more than females at every age from every cause is not news.

    I’ve always explained that males are fragile, even though they are physically stronger.

  • California to tighten vaccine law despite outcry over parental rights

    06/14/2015 5:05:58 PM PDT · 33 of 35
    exDemMom to DBeers
    LOL -the risk to the herd of catching measles and dying from measles IS the 'what if' and 'sky is falling' fear mongering. The actual risks published and provided with the medicine/vaccine -that IS the science that those who may take the medicine/vaccine use to make an informed consent.

    It is ironic that anti-vaxxers dismiss discussion of the very real risks of disability and death from vaccine-preventable diseases while hysterically hyping the minor side effects of vaccines as being intolerably dangerous and wildly exaggerating the 1 in a million chance of a serious side effect.

    Measles eradication is within our reach. But anti-vaxxers who would rather children die than receive a vaccine threaten that eradication. And make no mistake about it: the first anti-vaxxers' motivation for opposing smallpox vaccination was that preventing deadly illness goes against the will of God. They no longer claim to represent the will of God--nowadays, they are more likely to claim that preventing deadly disease is "unnatural" (because they worship Gaia instead of God now)--but the fact that they want children to die is unchanged.

  • California to tighten vaccine law despite outcry over parental rights

    06/13/2015 5:41:22 AM PDT · 29 of 35
    exDemMom to DBeers
    Let talk apples; not apples and oranges. I am only discussing U.S. measles deaths and side effects.

    There have been plenty of U.S. measles deaths. Vaccine deaths, OTOH, are non-existent.

    You are not aware. Don't feel bad, many are not aware of many things -the "hands up don't shoot" crowd comes to mind. The free marketplace of information and ideas is becoming less and less free everyday. However, you and others; regardless, 'feel' you can dictate what another individual aware parent chooses to do regarding vaccinations as long as the mob is on your side.

    Like any scientist, when I say that I am unaware of something, it means that I have looked exhaustively for that very thing. Documented evidence of serious harm or death resulting from vaccines simply does not exist. (By "evidence", I mean reports published in peer-reviewed journals or on credible sites like the CDC website.) OTOH, the evidence of serious harm and death from the diseases that are vaccine-preventable is abundant.

    Using the MedAlerts search engine, which facilitates an online search of the federal Vaccine Adverse Events Reporting System (VAERS) database, as of December 14, 2014 there have been 7,060 serious adverse events reported to the Vaccine Adverse Events Reporting System (VAERS) in connection with measles vaccine since 1990, with over half of those occurring in children three years old and under. Of these events 336 were deaths, with over half of the deaths occurring in children under three years of age. Adverse events following MMR vaccination reported to VAERS include:

    The VAERS system is extremely misused by anti-vax disinformation peddlers. Most people who fall for anti-vax propaganda do not have any understanding of what the VAERS system is, nor do they have any fundamental comprehension of the principle behind the adage that correlation does not equal causation.

    People die every single day. In 2011, about 53 per 100,000 children died, or a total of 44,226 children below age 19, died. In addition, about 6 babies per 1,000 born die before their first birthday. It is inevitable that some of these deaths, by coincidence alone, will occur soon after the child has received a vaccination. Furthermore, as these authors state in their review of VAERS data, "making general assumptions and drawing conclusions about vaccinations causing deaths based on spontaneous reports to VAERS – some of which might be anecdotal or second-hand – or from case reports in the media, is not a scientifically valid practice [emphasis mine]." In other words, the VAERS data alone indicates nothing. In order to pull any real data from VAERS, every report entered into the system must be investigated in order to determine its validity and the actual cause of the adverse event (which, in most cases, has nothing to do with a vaccine).

    IF vaccines are the sacred cow that many claim then ONLY those not vaccinated actually have skin in the risk game and only they should determine such choices weighing potential adverse effects versus potential benefits.

    Every person who chooses not to vaccinate is, in fact, making that choice on behalf of people who do not consent to having that choice made for them. Those unvaccinated children are a danger to children too young to be vaccinated, to people with compromised immune systems, to elderly people whose immune system function is declining, to pregnant women, and others who cannot be vaccinated due to valid medical reasons. Vaccination is a population--not personal, but population--health issue. And since the majority of the population wants to be protected against those deadly diseases, they are not very supportive of anti-vaxxers' choice to spread disease.

    There are many examples of "choice" being limited where other people's health and safety are concerned. You are not allowed to drive drunk, you can't shoot firearms willy-nilly in your neighborhood, you can't go into a restaurant kitchen to taste what's cooking, you can't hold a bonfire in the middle of a freeway, etc. In order for a civilization to function, there are limits on personal behavior--and some of those limits abridge your "right" to spread potentially deadly disease to others.

    LOL The government employs many 'experts' that support the many things they impose for a myriad of reasons. Thank God the stupid people have such experts to lend creditability to those who must impose their will upon others...

    What I find utterly amazing is that people believe that their ability to read and memorize whole tracts of anti-vax propaganda makes them more knowledgeable about vaccines, immune system function, risk analysis, etc., than the scientists and physicians who actually spend years studying human immune function and infectious diseases. The ability to copy-paste pseudoscience does not confer knowledge equal to that of a PhD.

  • Are "Transracial" rights the up and coming new thing?

    06/13/2015 4:42:14 AM PDT · 43 of 65
    exDemMom to PressurePoint
    I always tick the "Other" box when filling out a form since, short of a genetic test, I really have no way of knowing or proving who my ancestors slept with or were raped by.

    Even with testing, you can't prove all of your ancestry. I had the test, and it showed English/Irish/Scandanavian/Iberian peninsula/Italian, plus smidgeons of Asian (from the "-stan" countries) and African (Bantu tribe). Some coworkers were surprised that, with my name, I have no German ancestry. If I look at my family tree, my name did originate in Germany--but the German genes didn't stick around over the next 300 years.