QUESTIONABLE DRUG USED IN MEAT PRODUCTION

Most people have never heard of ractopamine. It is a growth drug fed to hogs and cattle to make them put on weight. (Additional weight with less feed means more money for the farmer per animal.) There are questions about the drugs safety for the animals and the humans eating them.

What is Ractopamine? It is a beta-agonist. That defines “a class of medication that relax muscles of the airways, which widens the airways and results in easier breathing”. It is a drug originally developed to treat asthma in humans. It also helps animals develop more muscle instead of fat. This helps farmers meet the consumer demand for leaner meat and makes heavier animals to market.

“The drug has triggered more adverse reports in pigs than any other animal drug on the market,” Helena Bottemiller reported for the Food and Environment Reporting Network in 2012. Ractopamine was approved by the US Food and Drug Administration for use in animals. 

Have you figured out whose health the FDA is looking out for?
More on this drug and its use on animals is here: FORTUNE MAGAZINE STORY


Florida Bill Would Let Adoption Agencies Refuse Gay Couples

CBS Miami

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TALLAHASSEE (CBSMiami/AP) —A bill, ready for a House vote, would allow private adoption agencies to use religious and/or moral reasons to deny gay couples wanting to adopt children.

The House Judiciary Committee approved the bill Thursday after emotional testimony that compared the legislation to Indiana’s new religious objections law.

The bill (HB 7111) was filed after the House voted to strip a gay adoption ban from state law, which upset social conservatives. Republican Rep. Jason Brodeur said if gay couples want to adopt, they can go to the Department of Children and Families or a private agency that don’t have a problem with it.

Democratic Rep. Dave Kerner said the gay adoption ban was unconstitutional, and if agencies want to discriminate against gays, they shouldn’t be in the business.

(TM and © Copyright 2015 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE…

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Education Today Is Not What it Use To Be.

I received this as an email from one of the supervisors at work. It was sent by an employee to their supervisor and coworkers following said employee’s resignation.

I have edited this email to remove any reference that would identify the author and place of business.

Subject: A positive Bid Farewell…(edit)..

Ensuing greater than six years of excitement to bestow this memorable stint, I bid a positive adieu.

Good Morning….(edit)…,

I am enchanted regretfully, to further my professional career … (edited). My Tenure as an …(edit)…will flux on (date edited) at 5:PM EST.

Executing parallel-bonded relationships deemed infectious, expelling a higher level of professionalism, pride, and commitment. This motivation increases independence and persistence through aiding in the advancement of my professional career. We strive to remain sociable and optimistic in our pursuits to comply and exceed expectations, while savagely harnessed to the pressures of life. We must remain innovative and enthusiastic; thickening our comprehension, until we are all established as intricate instruments of our selected crafts.

Remain diverse and engage in challenges, for each day presents another born opportunity.

Please accept this tribute for assisting in my quest of knowledge enhancement and professional career advancement. Rest humbly assured, l am immensely obliged.

“The day we stop working towards more, Is the day we all begin to receive less.”


Charlie Hebdo Cartoons and Traditional Media, A Hobson’s Choice?

The traditional news organizations that decided not the publish the cartoons must have reporters and other assets based in Muslim countries.  They must be trying to protect them from revenge attacks because of varying degrees of intolerance demonstrated in the past.  The intolerance seems to be bolstered by the “blue” laws on blasphemy, which are enforced using draconian measures in many of the countries. The decision not to publish could be interpreted as the organizations being held hostage by their unprotected, vulnerable assets being open to attack.

Protect free speech and the right to publish or protect assets in place and keep the ability to report the news, a Hobson’s choice.

A link to an article on this subject. https://gigaom.com/2015/01/08/online-outlets-showed-hebdo-images-but-offline-media-didnt-why/


Google, Privacy and Their Real Product

It is in Googles best interest to minimize an individual’s privacy. The objective of the company is to get enough information to serve you with ad-words tailored to your interests and demographic. This is allows the company to develop a method to segment a market to get the most bang out of an advertisers buck. For Google, the the product is not gmail, Android, Google Docs, Google Analytics or any other service they give away to sell for a nominal amount. The product Google produces is information about the people who use the various Google services.

What are you giving up when you use using Google services? The question was answered when they activated Google + and eventually making everyone use the service. To make Google + effective in gathering information on a typical Google user, Google started by banning pseudonyms and other methods of obscuring your identity. This was the method to ensure that they had real identities. When they tied search, mail, docs, YouTube, etc. to Google +, they now have a method to obtain an accurate picture of each user. By combing the pseudonyms once used for each Google service, Google now has a single user sign on tied to an identity of Google +.

Google services on Android track your location, sending the information back to Google. Combine this with Google scanning your email, documents on Google drive, YouTube posts and search queries for key words, you will see that they get a complete picture of where you go, what your interests are, income and other demographic information. Their apps on Android, IOS and the Chrome browser are reporting to Google HQ. The product is information, information about you! Privacy really screws this business model.

By redefining privacy, Google is doing its best to keep its business’s model off the politicians radar. They have not fully succeeded in Europe, but they seem to be getting some traction here. Most of the press does not pursue this angle about Google. An exception was when New York Time did a story in February 2014 on Google +, “The Plus in Google Plus? It’s Mostly for Google”. The tech press give the impression that Google can do no wrong.

Then there is Google’s chief internet evangelist, Vint Cerf, who is credited as one of the founders of the internet. He has been reported as saying; the industrial revolution and the growth of urban concentrations, created a sense of privacy, but that that privacy may actually be an anomaly. He went on to say; “In a town of 3,000 people there is no privacy. Everybody knows what everybody is doing,”. This is one of the most disingenuous statements concerning privacy. In a small town it may be true that everyone knows what everyone is doing, but they also know who is doing the asking and will also find out why they are asking. This is the check on outsiders trying to find out about an individual because the questioner becomes a subject of interest. Also, all information before, during and post the industrial revolution was on paper kept in the originating town or city. To do research before the Information Age and the ubiquity of databases on computers running the World Wide Web, you had to travel to the town or city that originated the documents. You also had to talk to people to get a sense of the person you were researching. This involved a lot of work and the work needed to assemble information on an individual afforded privacy. This obstacle to destroying privacy was not breached until all documents and vital statistics were stored electronically in easily accessible databases. This coupled with the rise of the World Wide Web connecting the databases removed the work it took to compile a profile of an individual.

The primary architect of developing the ability to catalogue and search the web efficiently was Google. To fund search, Google used user information gleaned from search activity to sell advertisements. The information gathered has evolved over time to what we have today. It is now not limited to Google. There is Facebook, Yahoo, Twitter, all internet service providers, governments, etc. The end result is a complete depreciation of privacy, with large internet companies trying to convince their users that they need not be concerned about privacy because nothing was private to begin with.


The Morality of Dishonesty

I received this story in an email and in a perverse way the joke reveals some useful observations. The only changes were a few edits. The observations in italics are from the originator or a subsequent editor, whoever they may be.

Enjoy, this is amusing.

A few years ago robbers entered a bank in a small town. One of them shouted: “Don’t move! The money belongs to the bank. Your lives belong to you.”
Immediately, all the people in the bank lay on the floor quietly, without panic.

This is an example of how the correct wording of a sentence can make everyone change their view of the world.

One woman lay on the floor in a provocative manner. The robber approached her saying, “Ma’am, this is a robbery not a rape. Please behave accordingly.”

This is an example of how to behave professionally, and focus on the goal.

When the robbers were running from the bank, the youngest robber (who had a college degree) said to the oldest robber (who had barely finished elementary school): “Hey, maybe we should count how much we stole.”

The older man replied: “Don’t be stupid. It’s a lot of money so let’s wait for the news on TV to find out how much money was taken from the bank.”

This is an example of how life experience is more important than a degree.

After the robbery, the manager of the bank said to his accountant: “Let’s call the cops and tell them how much has been stolen.”

“Wait,” said the Accountant, “before we do that, let’s add the $800,000 we took for ourselves a few months ago and just say that it was stolen as part of today’s robbery.”

This is an example of taking advantage of an opportunity.

The following day it was reported in the news that the bank lost $3 million in the robbery. The robbers counted the money and found only $1 million, so they started to grumble.

“We risked our lives for $1 million, while the bank’s management embezzled $2 million and blamed the loss on the robbery? Maybe its better to learn how to work the system, instead of being a simple robber.”

This is an example of how knowledge can be more useful than power.

Moral: Give a person a gun, and he can rob a bank. Give a person a bank, and he can rob everyone.


HRH Prince of Wales, Foot in Mouth Syndrome

Email from Nick Lyon on HRH comments on NHS

Email from Nick Lyon on HRH comments on NHS

This found on the http://www.dcscience.net blog.