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Category Archives: Current Political News

Don’t Grope Me, Bro!

I support Ron Paul’s recent legislation to stop the TSA from taking draconian measures to treat all boarding passengers as criminals, including body scanners using health-damaging radiation and, if you opt-out of those body scans, a full-body groping.  This is absurd.  To show my support, I’ll be making T-shirts with the following logo I designed, itself a parody of the TSA logo.  This is a rough draft, but shows the long, groping arm of the government accosting the symbol of our nation, the bald eagle, and featuring an upside-down flag symbolizing our nation in peril!

Don't Grope Me, Bro!

 

On the backside:

Fourth Amendment to the United States Constitution:

The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects,

against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated,

and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause,

supported by Oath or affirmation,

and particularly describing the place to be searched,

and the persons or things to be seized.

.

Yes, the Fourth Amendment applies directly to the actions of government.  Yes, TSA is a government agency.  It doesn’t matter if the search is done on private property – such as in airports.  It is being done by a government agency without due process.

 

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EPA to Eliminate Regulation of Neurotoxin in Drinking Water

Nothing is more plentiful in the world, nor more vital for our existence than water. Water is essential for all functions within the body, but especially for transferring nutrients and eliminating wastes. When drinking water is contaminated, the body is especially vulnerable to accumulated toxins, so it makes sense to have the cleanest drinking water obtainable for optimum health. In my opinion, the decision by the EPA and the Bush Administration to exempt the ubiquitous neurotoxin, perchlorate, from federal regulation and oversight is a step in the wrong direction. Just like earlier decisions to fluoridate public drinking water, putting a known toxin IN the water, this decision just stinks. For those of you who are not familiar with perchlorate or its associated health effects, it is worth your time to check out the information at ewg.org.

Perchlorate is a common additive in rocket fuel, which has known neurotoxic effects on humans.

Perchlorate is a common additive in rocket fuel, which has known neurotoxic effects on humans.

Feds Set to Eliminate Water Regulations for Neurotoxin

Wired, Brandon Keim
Published December 3, 2008

Among the Bush administration’s final environmental legacies will be a decision to exempt perchlorate, a known neurotoxin found at unsafe levels in the drinking water of millions of Americans, from federal regulation.

The ruling, proposed by the Environmental Protection Agency in October, was supposed to be formalized on Monday. That deadline passed, but the agency expects to announce its decision by the year’s end, before president-elect Barack Obama takes office. It could take years to reverse.

Critics accuse the EPA of ignoring expert advice and basing their decision on an abstract model of perchlorate exposure, rather than existing human data.

“We know that breast milk is widely contaminated with perchlorate, and we know that young children are especially vulnerable. We have really good human data. So why are they putting a model front-and-center?” said Anila Jacobs at the nonprofit Environmental Working Group. “And they used a model that hasn’t yet gone through the peer-review process.”

The ruling is one of dozens planned for the final days of the Bush administration. Others include a relaxing of air pollution standards for aging power plants, and a reduction of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s traditional role in evaluating the impact of federal projects on endangered species.

These have received more attention than the status of perchlorate, a chemical found mostly in jet rocket fuel and detected in 35 states and 153 water public water systems. It is known to lower thyroid hormone levels in women; it poses a particular threat to pregnant women and breast-feeding children, whose long-term neurological development can be stunted by youthful hormone imbalances.

As many as 40 million Americans may now be exposed to unsafe levels of perchlorate, and the EPA’s own analysis puts the number at 16 million. The most comprehensive human exposure study, which measured unexpectedly high perchlorate levels and correlated them with thyroid hormone drops, was concluded by the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in 2007.

Environmental health advocates saw the study as supporting tightened restrictions on perchlorate levels in drinking water — something the EPA had been loathe to do under the Bush administration. The study was not considered in the anticipated ruling, which could effectively end federal monitoring of perchlorate in drinking water.

“If you used the human studies from the CDC, then you would be forced to regulate it, because we know there are health effects at current levels of exposure,” said Jacobs.

Benjamin Blount, co-author of the CDC’s study, would not comment on the EPA’s decision, but said that infants — who consume, proportional to their body weight, about six times more water than adults — “are thought to have a higher dose than at any other life stage.”

The EPA declined to comment on why they used a model rather than the CDC’s data in deciding that regulating perchlorate would not provide “a meaningful opportunity for health risk reduction for persons served by public water systems.”

In a November letter to EPA administrator Stephen Johnson, the EPA’s own Science Advisory Board questioned the model. “Its soundness will not be publicly vetted,” they wrote. Only one of two peer reviews invited by the agency has been received, and that was announced only today on the EPA’s website.

“The Science Advisory Board believes that more time is needed for the decision process and for scientific input,” said Joan Rose, a Michigan State University water researcher and chair of the Board’s Drinking Water Committee.

Even Michael Dourson, a researcher at the nonprofit Toxicology Excellence for Risk Assessment project who accepts the EPA’s model, doesn’t understand why the EPA favored it over human studies.

“The data is on pregnant women and babies, and these studies are quite powerful,” he said. “If they could spend more time to make their decision, I’d recommend looking at it.”

According to EPA spokeswoman Enesta Jones, the agency expects to announce a decision “by the end of the year.” There is little reason to think the ruling will change from its current form.

“This administration has been adamant about not regulating perchlorate,” said Mae Wu, an attorney at the nonprofit Natural Resources Defense Council.

If the rulings go through, Congress may still take action. California congresswomen Barbara Boxer and Hilda Solis, both Democrats, have each drafted legislation that would force the EPA to regulate perchlorate, though it could take years to go into effect.

States still have the option of regulating perchlorate on their own — but this is not easy, said Charles DeSaillan, New Mexico’s assistant attorney general for natural resources.

“We have fairly limited resources. Historically we’ve relied on the federal drinking water standards, and adopted those,” he said. “In order for us to adopt our own, we’d have to do all the science, all of the research, hire the experts, and go through a regulatory process which would be opposed by the Department of Defense and Department of Energy.”

New Mexico is home to several prominent military testing facilities, and has the highest average perchlorate exposures in the country.

“It’d be long and difficult. Eventually we may do it. But it’s easier for us to rely on the EPA. This is their job. And in the case of perchlorate, they don’t seem to be doing it,” said DeSaillan.

 

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Two U.S. Scientists Raise Concern In Congress Over Cell Phone Brain Tumor Link

Cell phone radiation may be hazardous to your health, studies show.

Certain studies indicate that cell phone radiation may be hazardous to your health. Radiation near the brain for hours at a time, harmful? Go figure.

I’ve been warning people for at least a couple of years now about the dangers associated with cell phone usage and any low-frequency radiation-emitting products (cordless phones, Wi-Fi, and Nintendo Wii). There have been numerous studies abroad suggesting a link between brain tumors and cell phone radiation. While not entirely convinced of the correlation between the two, I did decide to get rid of my cell phone, as well as my daughter’s out of caution. To me, it doesn’t make sense to ignore data out there which suggests that this relatively new technology has detrimental effects on our health. There have been a number of individuals who have argued with me and stated something to the effect of, “Well, you gotta die of something!” Personally, I can think of a hundred other ways to go than by preventable brain cancer or to have to endure the suffering of vestibular schwannoma and radiosurgery. Yet, since there hasn’t been any hard, substantial evidence from scientists and doctors in this country, this issue hasn’t really been raised to the level of public awareness that it deserves.

It seems, however, that American doctors (and Canadian) are now starting to take notice as well. I found the following article at Mercola.com, which describes the efforts of Dr. Herberman and Dr. Carpenter to bring their scientific and medical concerns to Congress regarding the safety of cell phone usage.

With hundreds of millions of people using cell phones, and at younger and younger ages, it behooves us to conduct more studies (not paid for by the cell phone companies or companies that bring us cell phone technologies) into the safety of cell phone radiation. But, don’t take my word for it.

Cell phone may raise brain cancer risk
By Ben Wasserman and Sue Mueller
Sep 26, 2008 – 12:56:05 PM

Friday Sep 26, 2008 (foodconsumer.org) – Two U.S. scientists told the House Subcommittee on Domestic Policy in a congressional hearing that use of cell phone may raise the risk of brain cancer although the risk needs to be further researched, news media reports.

The concern came from Dr. Ronald Herberman, director of the University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute and Dr. David Carpenter, director of the Institute for Health and the Environment at the University of Albany.

Drs. Herberman and Carpenter cited a major study recently presented by Dr. Lennart Hardell of Örebro University in Sweden saying people using cell phones doubled their risk of developing brain cancer and acoustic neuromas, a benign tumor that damage hearing nerve. The study also showed people who started using cell phone before the age of 20 years were more than five times as likely to develop brain cancer as those who did not.

“I cannot tell this committee that cell phones are definitely dangerous. But, I certainly cannot tell you that they are safe,” Herberman was quoted by businessweek.com as saying. Dr. Herberman early sent to his colleagues a warning over the risk of the cell phone and advised in a public statement that children should not be allowed or restricted to use cell phone except for emergencies.

Lennart Hardell is a professor of the University Hospital in Orebro, Sweden. He re-analyzed data from one of the biggest studies ever carried out on the effect of radiation on cancer risk and found that risk of brain cancer in those who started using cell phone before age 20 was five times higher while the risk for those who started using cell phones after 20 was 50 percent higher compared to those who did not use.

Last week the European Parliament voted 522 to 16 to urge ministers across Europe to impose stricter limits for exposure to radiation from mobile and cordless phones, wi-fi and other radiation-generating devices in part because children are particularly vulnerable to the risk due to their immature smaller brains.

Prof. Hardell told the conference that children under 12 should not use mobiles except in emergencies. He suggested that the risk for children and teenagers may be greater than his results indicated.

A government researcher Dr. Robert Hoover at the National Cancer Institute downplayed the significance of Hardell’s study saying the study has not been subject to peer reviews. He suggested the association between cell phone use and risk of cancer is inconclusive and further research is needed to clarify the association.

Not much research on the association between cell phone and brain cancer has been done in the US. Mostly the research was done in European countries. Often studies lasted no more than ten years and the results were negative. Researchers and sponsors of the studies then pointed to the results and said cell phone is safe to use.

The important thing many studies failed to address is the latency of brain cancer. The malignancies in the brain like many other types need more than 10 years to develop. The association between the risk of brain cancer and use of cell phone for more than 10 years was often positive.

The House Subcommittee invited CTIA, the international Association for Wireless telecommunications, an industry organization, to testify, but the organization declined the invitation, Rep Dennis Kucinich was cited as saying.

Instead, CTIA issued a statement saying the industry has supported research on the issues and research so far has failed to prove that there should be a concern about the brain cancer risk.

Dr. Mercola’s Comments:

I [Dr. Joseph Mercola] have been warning of the dangers of cell phones for nearly a decade now, and as the supporting evidence keeps mounting, scientists, medical professionals, and government agencies around the world are starting to caution against cell phone use as well.

Ever growing scientific research corroborates the suspicion that information-carrying radio waves transmitted by cell phones and other wireless devices can:

* Cause brain tumors
* Harm blood cells and cause cellular changes
* Damage your DNA
* Cause nerve-cell damage
* Accelerate and contribute to onset of autism , and trigger Alzheimer’s disease
* Damage your eyes
* Cause sleep disruptions, fatigue and headaches

Tumor immunologist Dr. Ronald B. Herberman, director of the University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute (UPCI), is the last in a recent succession of authorities that are speaking out publicly about the potential dangers of cell phones.

Dr. Ronald Herberman’s Message

Earlier this year, Dr. Herberman sent out a staff advisory that included a summary analysis of the recent studies forming the basis of his precautionary message. In his testimony before the U.S. House Subcommittee on Domestic Policy on September 25, 2008, Dr. Herberman stated:

“My evaluation of the scientific and technical information indicating the potential hazards of cell phones was built on the foundation of my extensive experience in cancer research and critical evaluations of reports being submitted for peer-reviewed publications.

I recognized that there was sufficient evidence to justify the precautionary advisories that had been issued in other countries, to alert people about the possibility of harm from long-term, frequent cell phone use, especially by young children.

Then, Dr. Davis and I consulted with international experts in the biology of radiofrequency (RF) effects and the epidemiology of brain tumors, and with experts in neurology, oncology and neurosurgery at UPCI.

Without exception, all of the experts contacted confirmed my impression that there was a sound basis to make the case for precaution, especially since there are simple and practical measures that can be taken, to be able to continue to use cell phones while substantially reducing the potential hazards.”

Dr. David Carpenter and the BioInitiative Report

Dr. Carpenter also testified about the scientific foundation for cautionary measures before the U.S. House Subcommittee. Dr. Carpenter is a physician who has researched and published more than 300 articles in peer-reviewed journals on the environmental causes of human disease.

He also served as the co-editor of The BioInitiative Report, published August 31, 2007, by an international working group of scientists, researchers and public health policy professionals.

The report documents serious scientific concerns about the current limits regulating how much radiation is allowable from power lines, cell phones, and many other sources of exposure to radiofrequencies and electromagnetic fields in daily life.

It concludes that the existing standards for public safety are completely inadequate to protect your health. The report also includes studies showing evidence for:

* Effects on Gene and Protein Expression (Transcriptomic and Proteomic Research)
* Genotoxic Effects – RFR and ELF DNA Damage
* Stress Response (Stress Proteins)
* Effects on Immune Function
* Effects on Neurology and Behavior
* Brain Tumors and Acoustic Neuromas
* Childhood Cancers (Leukemia)
* Magnetic Field Exposure: Melatonin Production; Alzheimer’s Disease; Breast Cancer
* Breast Cancer Promotion (Melatonin links in laboratory and cell studies)
* Disruption by the Modulating Signal

Dr. Vini Gautam Khurana’s Review of More than 100 Studies

Another noted brain cancer authority who has recently voiced his concerns is Australian Dr Vini Gautam Khurana. He is a Mayo Clinic-trained neurosurgeon with an advanced neurosurgery Fellowship in cerebral vascular and tumor microsurgery. In February 2008, Dr. Khurana issued a paper titled: Mobile Phones and Brain Tumors after reviewing more than 100 sources of recent medical and scientific literature.

Says Dr. Khurana,

“In the context of the fact that widespread mobile phone usage commenced in the mid-1980s (earliest in Northern Europe), with the first 10 years of widespread usage ending in the mid-1990s, and the fact that solid tumors may take several years to trigger and form, it seems plausible to expect that if no appropriate changes are made by Industry and consumers alike, in the next 5 – 10 years the aforementioned concerning associations will likely be definitely proven in the medical literature.”

He goes on to say:

“Given the calculated “incubation time” and the commencement of mobile telephony’s mass deployment in Sweden, it is no surprise that Swedish researchers were among the first to report a positive association between cell phone use and brain tumor risk.”

Public Warnings on the Rise

Like I’ve said before, there’s really no shortage of evidence showing that cell phone use (and other wireless devices) can be dangerous to your health. Fortunately more and more people are beginning to take the warning signs seriously.

In 2005, the British-based National Radiological Protection Board suggested children younger than age 8 should not be given a cell phone as it risks exposing their young bodies to harmful radiation. This year Toronto’s department of public health followed suit, warning that because of possible side effects from radio frequency radiation, children under 8 should only use a cell phone in emergencies, and teenagers should limit calls to less than 10 minutes.

The U.K., Belgium, Germany, France and Russia have also introduced precautionary policies regarding cell phone usage due to potential health risks.

Few people realize this, but brain cancer has now surpassed leukemia as the number one cancer killer in children, and many scientists believe this is directly linked to the exponential increase in cell phone use and other wireless devices.

Australia has seen an increase in pediatric brain cancers of 21 percent in just one decade. This is consistent with studies showing a 40 percent brain tumor increase across the board in Europe and the U.K. over the last 20 years.

The INTERPHONE Study – Will it Settle the Issue in Time?

As reported in Microwave News in June this year, the results from the largest cell phone study to date are being eagerly awaited by both industry and governments worldwide.

The INTERPHONE Project — a 13-country epidemiological study of tumors among users of mobile phones – is already lagging three years behind its scheduled completion date. Part of the delay in putting together the final report now appears to be internal strife, as scientists are joining opposing camps of “safe” vs. “unsafe.”

Dr. Lennart Hardell’s study mentioned in the article above is part of this larger research project.

The outcome of this particular study may be more vital than most people realize, as institutions like the World Health Organization (WHO) and the European Commission have cautioned that conclusions about possible cancer risks cannot be drawn until the INTERPHONE study is published.

If the wrong conclusions are drawn from these studies, the resulting lack of public warnings could have disastrous consequences for the generations to come.

In Conclusion

Remember, the damage from cell phone exposure will take many years to surface. There are rarely any initial symptoms, just like smoking and lung cancer. Do you really want to risk the chance of developing brain cancer because you can’t sacrifice the minor inconvenience of using your cell’s speaker phone, or using a safe headset?

I recently finished writing my latest book, Wireless Deception, which covers this serious health issue in greater depth. But for immediate recommendations on how to protect yourself and your family from the dangers of cell phone radiation, please review the guidelines included in my previous article, Now Half the World Has a Cell Phone – – Why That is a Brain Tumor Epidemic Waiting to Happen.

[view entire article]
Also see:

Research Center for Wireless Technology (www.emfnews.org)

 
 

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