31 July 2010

Where Collecting Rain Water Is a Crime

It used to be that  we could all count on certain things to be completely free and and not a part of the for profit commercial market place. It used to be that there were some things that were considered to be commonly owned by the public, like public utilities, so good clean water came into your house for free.Things like water, air and sunshine were free. Gradually however, under a concept called privatization, politicians have given away public property to private interests and free God-given "commodities" have come to be pricey or down right illegal.   Collecting rainwater for your garden, for instance,in some states is a crime now. Read about it here.

(NaturalNews) Many of the freedoms we enjoy here in the U.S. are quickly eroding as the nation transforms from the land of the free into the land of the enslaved, but what I'm about to share with you takes the assault on our freedoms to a whole new level. You may not be aware of this, but many Western states, including Utah, Washington and Colorado, have long outlawed individuals from collecting rainwater on their own properties because, according to officials, that rain belongs to someone else.

As bizarre as it sounds, laws restricting property owners from "diverting" water that falls on their own homes and land have been on the books for quite some time in many Western states. Only recently, as droughts and renewed interest in water conservation methods have become more common, have individuals and business owners started butting heads with law enforcement over the practice of collecting rainwater for personal use.

Check out this YouTube video of a news report out of Salt Lake City, Utah, about the issue. It's illegal in Utah to divert rainwater without a valid water right, and Mark Miller of Mark Miller Toyota, found this out the hard way.

After constructing a large rainwater collection system at his new dealership to use for washing new cars, Miller found out that the project was actually an "unlawful diversion of rainwater." Even though it makes logical conservation sense to collect rainwater for this type of use since rain is scarce in Utah, it's still considered a violation of water rights which apparently belong exclusively to Utah's various government bodies.

"Utah's the second driest state in the nation. Our laws probably ought to catch up with that," explained Miller in response to the state's ridiculous rainwater collection ban.

Salt Lake City officials worked out a compromise with Miller and are now permitting him to use "their" rainwater, but the fact that individuals like Miller don't actually own the rainwater that falls on their property is a true indicator of what little freedom we actually have here in the U.S. (Access to the rainwater that falls on your own property seems to be a basic right, wouldn't you agree?)
Outlawing rainwater collection in other states
Utah isn't the only state with rainwater collection bans, either. Colorado and Washington also have rainwater collection restrictions that limit the free use of rainwater, but these restrictions vary among different areas of the states and legislators have passed some laws to help ease the restrictions

In Colorado, two new laws were recently passed that exempt certain small-scale rainwater collection systems, like the kind people might install on their homes, from collection restrictions.
Prior to the passage of these laws, Douglas County, Colorado, conducted a study on how rainwater collection affects aquifer and groundwater supplies. The study revealed that letting people collect rainwater on their properties actually reduces demand from water facilities and improves conservation.

Personally, I don't think a study was even necessary to come to this obvious conclusion. It doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure out that using rainwater instead of tap water is a smart and useful way to conserve this valuable resource, especially in areas like the West where drought is a major concern.

Additionally, the study revealed that only about three percent of Douglas County's precipitation ended up in the streams and rivers that are supposedly being robbed from by rainwater collectors. The other 97 percent either evaporated or seeped into the ground to be used by plants.

This hints at why bureaucrats can't really use the argument that collecting rainwater prevents that water from getting to where it was intended to go. So little of it actually makes it to the final destination that virtually every household could collect many rain barrels worth of rainwater and it would have practically no effect on the amount that ends up in streams and rivers.

It's all about control, really

As long as people remain unaware and uninformed about important issues, the government will continue to chip away at the freedoms we enjoy. The only reason these water restrictions are finally starting to change for the better is because people started to notice and they worked to do something to reverse the law.

Even though these laws restricting water collection have been on the books for more than 100 years in some cases, they're slowly being reversed thanks to efforts by citizens who have decided that enough is enough.

Because if we can't even freely collect the rain that falls all around us, then what, exactly, can we freely do? The rainwater issue highlights a serious overall problem in America today: diminishing freedom and increased government control.

Today, we've basically been reprogrammed to think that we need permission from the government to exercise our inalienable rights, when in fact the government is supposed to derive its power from us. The American Republic was designed so that government would serve the People to protect and uphold freedom and liberty. But increasingly, our own government is restricting people from their rights to engage in commonsense, fundamental actions such as collecting rainwater or buying raw milk from the farmer next door.

Today, we are living under a government that has slowly siphoned off our freedoms, only to occasionally grant us back a few limited ones under the pretense that they're doing us a benevolent favor.

Fight back against enslavement

As long as people believe their rights stem from the government (and not the other way around), they will always be enslaved. And whatever rights and freedoms we think we still have will be quickly eroded by a system of bureaucratic power that seeks only to expand its control.

Because the same argument that's now being used to restrict rainwater collection could, of course, be used to declare that you have no right to the air you breathe, either. After all, governments could declare that air to be somebody else's air, and then they could charge you an "air tax" or an "air royalty" and demand you pay money for every breath that keeps you alive.

Think it couldn't happen? Just give it time. The government already claims it owns your land and house, effectively. If you really think you own your home, just stop paying property taxes and see how long you still "own" it. Your county or city will seize it and then sell it to pay off your "tax debt." That proves who really owns it in the first place... and it's not you!

How about the question of who owns your body? According to the U.S. Patent & Trademark office, U.S. corporations and universities already own 20% of your genetic code. Your own body, they claim, is partially the property of someone else.

So if they own your land, your water and your body, how long before they claim to own your air, your mind and even your soul?

Unless we stand up against this tyranny, it will creep upon us, day after day, until we find ourselves totally enslaved by a world of corporate-government collusion where everything of value is owned by powerful corporations -- all enforced at gunpoint by local law enforcement.

29 July 2010

Music for Deep Relaxation -flute and viiolin

The Earth Is Drugged

Many people don't believe in taking prescription drugs. They believe in a more natural approach to health, and some have even taken the radical step of throwing way every bottle of pills in their medicine cabinet. Did you ever wonder what happens to those drugs that got thrown away? Or what about the ones that were never thrown away , but were taken as prescribed, and then got excreted in the urine or feces of the person who took the drug? Well those drugs send up in the environment, especially in the water ways, rivers, lakes and oceans, so that the planet is literally swimming in a stew of drugs! Since drugs are really for the most part highly refined petroleum , then this is another kind of oil spill, if you will. Big Pharma is the flip side of Big Oil. Ironic isn't it that the same people , all over again, are doing the same thing, all over again, and again, and again. Maybe were too drugged to stop them, maybe we don't care because we are homeopathically drugged that way.

(NaturalNews) The President's Cancer Panel (PCP) recently released its yearly report to the President outlining the status of cancer in America. This year's report focuses primarily on environmental factors that contribute to cancer risk. According to the report, pharmaceutical drugs are a serious environmental pollutant, particularly in the way they continue to contaminate waterways across the country (and the world).

Many reports have recently appeared about pharmaceutical contamination of water supplies, rivers, lakes and other waterways, but spokespersons from the drug and chemical industries have denied that this pollution poses any risk whatsoever to the environment. But this report, issued directly from PCP, provides a stunning indictment of the dangers associated with pharmaceutical pollution.

The executive summary of the PCP report includes the following statements:

"[P]harmaceuticals have become a considerable source of environmental contamination. Drugs of all types enter the water supply when they are excreted or improperly disposed of; the health impact of long-term exposure to varying mixtures of these compounds is unknown."

It's important to note that PCP is required by law to assess the National Cancer Program and offer a truthful evaluation of the various things it finds to be responsible for causing cancer. The panel is a division of the National Cancer Institute itself, so its findings hold fairly considerable weight in the scientific world (or they should, if the reaction wasn't so politicized).

The report itself is quite extensive, evaluating everything from the environmental and health impacts of drug and pesticide pollution to cell phone radiation and nuclear testing residue. But the section on pharmaceutical drugs is especially interesting when considering the fact that numerous reports have shown that drugs and drug residue that ends up in water supplies typically isn't filtered out by municipal treatment plants.

No laws exist to protect the public from pharmaceuticals

Many chemicals are highly regulated because they are known to negatively affect human and environmental health. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is tasked with regulating exposure to these chemicals, but pharmaceuticals are not included in its regulatory scheme. Despite years of prodding by environmental scientists, the EPA has given very little attention to the dangers posed by widespread pharmaceutical contamination.

According to a U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) study conducted back in 2002, antidepressants, blood pressure and diabetes medications, anticonvulsants, oral contraceptives, hormone replacement therapy drugs, chemotherapy drugs, antibiotics, heart medications and even codeine are all showing up in the water supplies of American cities. This study was the first national-scale evaluation of pharmaceutical drug contamination in streams, and roughly 80 percent of the streams tested were found to be contaminated as well.

In 2008, an AP investigation found that at least 46 million Americans are drinking water contaminated with trace amounts of pharmaceuticals. Even though every city tested has its water treated and "purified" prior to being delivered to the public, trace amounts of pharmaceutical drugs are making their way through to the tap. (Since not all major metropolitan areas were tested, the number of people affected is likely far higher than what was reported by AP.)

In spite of all this, water quality reports don't disclose the levels of pharmaceuticals found in tap water. Since the EPA and FDA have failed to establish any proper guidelines for drug contamination in water, most people have no idea that their water contains a dangerous cocktail of prescription medications.

Hospitals, consumers and drug companies are all responsible

None of this is surprising if you consider that unused and expired drugs cannot be legally returned to the pharmacies where they were purchased. Many people just flush them down the toilet because the drug labels actually encourage patients to dispose of them this way (and they probably don't know what else to do with them).

People who take prescription and over-the-counter drugs will excrete them as well, contributing to the drug overload being found at wastewater treatment plants. (Drugs are not necessarily "broken down" by your digestive system.)

It is also regular protocol for hospitals to flush millions of pounds of unused medications every year, a practice that contributes significantly to water contamination.

And let's not forget the drug companies that dump large amounts of their own pharmaceuticals into water supplies. The same AP investigation found that more than 270 million pounds of pharmaceutical compound residue is dumped every year into waterways nationwide, many of which serve as drinking water for millions of people.

The U.S. isn't the only place where Big Pharma is dumping its waste, either. In 2009, researchers found that India's rivers are full of dangerous pharmaceuticals, too.

One Indian river where 90 different pharmaceutical companies dump their waste tested positive for over 21 active drug ingredients. In one river alone, there was enough ciprofloxacin (a strong antibiotic) being dumped every day by drug companies to treat 90,000 people! (And scientists detected this in water that was supposedly purified by the drug companies before being released into the environment).

The drug contamination levels found in India's rivers were 150 times the detected levels found in the U.S. These findings prove that drug companies couldn't care less how much drug residue they dump in water as long as they can get away with it. They don't even believe that pharmaceutical contamination is a threat to the environment.

"Based on what we now know, I would say we find there's little or no risk from pharmaceuticals in the environment to human health," explained microbiologist Thomas White, a consultant for the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America, in a Dallas Morning News article about the AP investigation. This is similar to BP's CEO saying, after the Deepwater Horizon explosion, that the amount of oil gushing into the Gulf of Mexico was "tiny" compared to how big the ocean is.

Studies show drug residue cocktails actually do cause harm

Though the chemical and drug industries deny any danger from exposure to drug residue in the water, science (and common sense) says otherwise.

A 2006 study conducted by researchers from the University of Insubria in Italy simulated drug-tainted water by creating a low-level mixture of various drug residues and testing it on embryonic cells. They discovered that, even at low doses, the drug residues actually stopped cells from reproducing.

Even though current water contamination levels are measured in parts per million or parts per billion, there is no way to know just how much exposure people are actually experiencing. People drink contaminated water, shower in contaminated water and cook with contaminated water, so it's illogical to suggest that there's no harm being caused by widespread exposure, even at "low" doses, especially when the exposure is a combination of dozens of different drugs that have never been tested in combination.

People are not the only beings that are affected by pharmaceutical contamination, either. The world's aquatic ecosystems (and the plants and animals that belong to them) are all being negatively impacted.

Drugs are being found in fish

According to an MSNBC report back in 2009, all kinds of drugs are being found in the bodies of fish near major U.S. cities. Researchers found drugs for high cholesterol, allergies, high blood pressure, bipolar disorder and depression in the livers and tissue of fish.

Researchers are in agreement that aquatic species of all types are being harmed by continuous exposure to water contaminated with pharmaceuticals. Even though wastewater is treated in the U.S. before entering waterways, most treatment facilities do not have the proper filtering technology to remove dangerous drug residues from wastewater before it gets dumped.

Many fish are experiencing reproductive problems as a result of exposure, as is explained in the following report:


Beyond having their sperm damaged, some fish are actually changing sexes. Males are becoming females and females are becoming males as a result of drug exposure in the water. Other water creatures are experiencing things like organ failure and the inability to grow. It makes a reasonable person ask "How long until these effects start to hit humans?"

Or have they already?

"We have no reason to think that this is a unique situation. We find pretty much anywhere we look, these compounds are ubiquitous," explained Erik Orsak, an environmental contaminants specialist with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, in response to the findings.

And it's not just near American cities where fish are turning up with all kinds of drugs in their bodies. As of 2008, more than 100 different pharmaceutical compounds have been detected around the world, affecting fish and wildlife everywhere. These are chemicals that simply do not belong in our environment. And yet they are there, dumped into our waters by the pharmaceutical industry and its hospitals, pharmacies and consumers.

Why we need more research on the toxicity of pharmaceutical contaminants

Many animal studies have been or are being conducted on pharmaceutical exposure, and they are indicating that these drugs are causing widespread harm. But very few official human trials have been conducted, prompting many to push for increased efforts.

If drug residue is building up in animals and wildlife, then of course it's building up in humans as well, posing the risk of significant harm. Reproductive failure, thyroid dysfunction, cancer, osteoporosis -- all of these diseases and more may be caused, at least in part, by prolonged exposure to low levels of all sorts of drugs in the water supply.

Many states pushing for drug waste legislation

Because the truth about drug contamination in water is no longer a secret, many states have begun enacting legislation to regulate drug disposal. Last August, Illinois passed the Safe Pharmaceuticals Disposal Act, which restricts hospitals from flushing drugs down the drain.

California has a similar law in place, and New York is working on one as well, according to a recent report:


The same report indicates that there have been five bills introduced to regulate drugs at the federal level.

While this addresses the hospital waste problem, there's still the human and drug company waste problems. No matter how you look at it, pharmaceutical drugs are going to continue making their way into the water supplies because they will pass through the bodies of consumers first!

Drug companies must be held responsible for their wastewater

Since it's already been revealed that drug companies are failing to properly treat their wastewater before dumping it into rivers (even though they claim to be treating it), U.S. regulatory agencies need to step up and correct the problem. Regular monitoring of wastewater contaminant levels is the only way to halt the chemical contamination of waterways.

And if U.S. companies are polluting water supplies in other countries (such as India), they should be held accountable for their actions. There's no excuse for U.S. companies to pollute anywhere in the world just because they're operating outside domestic borders.

Wastewater treatment plants should be retrofitted

State and local legislators would do well to put forth their own legislation to upgrade wastewater treatment facilities so they can properly filter out pharmaceuticals (and dispose of them safely). Since there's no way to stop human elimination of pharmaceuticals (apart from slowly educating the masses to stop swallowing dangerous pharmaceuticals), municipalities need to do their part to prevent these dangerous toxins from getting into water supplies in the first place.

Together, these measures would help to drastically reduce the amount of pharmaceutical waste entering our environment.

It's the environment, stupid!

The careless disposal of toxic pharmaceuticals is proving to be highly destructive, despite reassurances by some that it's not that big of a deal. The health of the planet and all of its amazing biodiversity is now threatened by the steady poisoning of toxic chemical pharmaceuticals.

And it's not just pharmaceuticals, either. Chemical byproducts and waste from many different industries are polluting our environment at unprecedented rates. Mercury (from dental fillings), fluoride (dripped into the public water supply on purpose, if you can believe that!), and all sorts of other chemicals and heavy metals are showing up in food, water and the global environment.

Haven't we poisoned our planet enough already?

Plants, animals and even humans can only take so much of this. That's why we need to keep fighting against the corporations that are causing this harm and force them to stop destroying the world in which we hope to raise our children.

After all, if we keep poisoning the planet at this rate, there won't be much left to offer future generations except a toxic stew of patent-protected chemicals that all the corporations pretend pose no problem at all.

28 July 2010

Ustad Ali Akbar Khan (music video)

How to Avoid GMO Foods (video)

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25 July 2010

Go Down Moses- Let My People Go (music video)

The Powerful Archie Shepp and Horace Parlans
raise the spirit of the ancestors

The Health Benefits of Cheeries

One of the reasons I love this time of the year is because cherries are in season. I love them and I try to eat as many as I can while the season last. It is not unheard of for me to eat 2 pounds at a single setting, as the major component of my meal for that particular day. Did I mention that I love cherries? In fact they should be called CHEERIES because they make you feel so good. I just ate a bowl of them and decided to share with you some of the health benefits from this delicious fruit and all the fruits in the berry family.
Cherries:  Good and Good For You

By Joseph Mercola
     with Sarah Potts
Everyone knows how delicious cherries can be, but did you know that they can also relieve pain, help you avoid premature aging, and add years to your life? Of course, eating cherries during these winter months can be costly and challenging, but at the end of this article you’ll read about a very convenient and wise solution that gets my absolute highest endorsement.
Help Fight Cancer and Disease
Cherries, along with many other berries, are a rich source of antioxidants. They help prevent or repair the damage that is done to the body’s cells by free radicals. This means that antioxidants replace free radicals in your body before they can cause any damage.
Queritrin--a flavonoid--is rich in cherries, and has been found by researchers to be one of the most potent anticancer agents. When eating cherries, the queritrin is set free to fight off all the body’s cancerous cells.
Cherries also contain ellagic acid, a naturally occurring plant phenolic known as an anti-carcinogenic/anti-mutagenic compound. Some researchers say that ellagic acid may be the most effective way to prevent cancer.
Another compound found in cherries--perillyl alcohol (POH)--is extremely powerful in reducing the occurrence of all types of cancer. Researchers found that POH stops the growth of cancer cells by depriving them of the proteins they need to grow. It has worked on every kind of cancer that POH has been tested against.
Help Relieve Pain of Arthritis and Gout
Tart cherries contain two powerful compounds, anthocyanins and bioflavonoids. Both of these compounds slow down the enzymes Cyclo-oxyygenase-1 and -- 2, which helps to relieve and prevent arthritis and gout in the body.
Eliminate Oxidative Stress and Prevent Premature Aging
Cherries are rich in two important flavonoids, isoqueritrin and queritrin, which act as antioxidants and work to eliminate byproducts of oxidative stress, therefore slowing down the aging process.
Help Cure Migraines
By helping to reduce inflammation in the body, the anthocyanin and bioflanoids in cherries also help eliminate migraine headaches. These compounds are known to have similar activity to aspirin and ibuprofen.
Improve Body’s Circadian Rhythms
Extensive evidence points out that the antioxidant melatonin, which is also rich in cherries, is significant in improving the body’s circadian rhythms. Since melatonin is found in small quantities in the body, a slight increase can produce great results.
Help You Sleep
Melatonin is also found to help the body’s natural sleep patterns. Since the body so rapidly absorbs melatonin, cherries can increase melatonin levels in the blood, therefore improving the way you sleep.
How to Get All the Powerful Benefits of Cherries ... Right Now
A handful of fresh cherries in the summertime are a natural gourmet delight, but if you want to harness the antioxidant power of cherries on a routine basis--and you definitely should, as they are one of nature’s true "healing foods"--then you should seriously consider red tart cherry juice concentrate.
Along with blueberry concentrate and pomegranate concentrate, cherry juice concentrate is a super-nutritious, all-natural--and absolutely delicious--daily addition to your diet. As part of my personal program to prevent disease and avoid premature aging, I drink these concentrates every day, and because I recommend them so highly as part of your preventive health program, I wanted to offer the same source I use to you.
And so, in the Recommended Products section of Mercola.com, you will now find Brownwood Acres cherry juice concentrate, as well as blueberry concentrate and pomegranate concentrate.
This tart cherry juice concentrate is 100 percent natural and contains an amazing 55 to 60 tart cherries in every ounce. That’s a single recommended serving, so in other words, you’d have to eat 55 to 60 cherries to get the same health benefit (and I don’t recommend eating 55 to 60 cherries, as that is too much sugar ... again, this is the concentrate, so you are getting the health benefit of the cherries without all the sugar).
While most people simply mix the concentrates with water and drink it every morning for all the health benefits along with the incredible taste, some enjoy mixing it with milk (I recommend raw milk, of course). As it is a concentrate, it is incredibly versatile as a healthy ingredient in many recipes, as well. For instance, if you are into juicing, the cherry concentrate is an exceptional addition to a wide range of recipes.
The Brownwood Acres tart cherry juice concentrate comes in a quart size, and I recommend you take about an ounce (or about 2 tablespoons) per day. While you’ll quickly come to love the taste of the concentrate diluted in water or milk, this is also a very healthy addition to your children’s daily diet. To make it most palatable to them, you can consider adding a few drops of honey to the mix.
Finally, many people enjoy the taste and health benefits of mixing the cherry juice concentrate with the blueberry concentrate or pomegranate concentrate, so I encourage you to find out the incredible health benefits of both of those, as well.
Related Articles:
Cherries Cut Carcinogens in Beef
Blueberry Hamburgers for Your Health
Berries: A Great Source of Plant Antioxidants
Berries May Fight Arterial Disease
Berries--The Best Overall Fruits for Your Health

Dengue Fever Case from the Gulf

What is evolving in the Gulf of Mexico region is a multifaceted mega-disaster, one facet of which is a massive public health crisis, itself composed of many different dimensions. One of those dimensions is the dimension of out of control insect born diseases such as malaria and dengue fever, the subject of the following article. Previously in this blog we reported that the CDC found a huge number of dengue cases in Key West. Here is a report of one such case, a woman who vacationed there, got bitten several times by mosquitoes and became very ill with dengue fever. Residents in the Gulf who are exposed to the chemicals being sprayed to disperse the oil may also become immune deficient- sort of a chemical AIDS syndrome, and this may activate dengue that may be dormant in their bodies, or make them more susceptible if they are bitten by infected mosquitoes. Hopefully dengue mosquitoes will not spread out of Key West.


'Indescribable, crazy pain': Surviving dengue fever

By Amanda Gardner
Since Potter's diagnosis, the CDC and health officials in Florida have confirmed at least 28 cases of the fever in Key West.
Since Potter's diagnosis, the CDC and health officials in Florida have confirmed at least 28 cases of the fever in Key West.
  • Dengue fever is a viral disease native to the tropics but very rare in the continental U.S.
  • Symptoms include nausea, fever, debilitating headaches, eye pain, and bloody urine
  • A rash in the form of small red dots is what caused Potter's doctor to suspect Dengue Fever
  • Dengue fever is transmitted by a mosquito found in warm climates
(Health.com) -- Jeanette Potter was in the Atlanta airport when she started to feel a bit off.
"I thought I had the flu, but it was a heavier kind of flu," says Potter, 34, who had been flying home to Rochester, New York, after a weeklong vacation in Key West. "I was achy. I had a headache. I was kind of disoriented."
Her symptoms weren't from the flu, as it turns out. They were the early signs of dengue fever, a viral disease native to the tropics but incredibly rare in the continental U.S. -- so rare that it took two weeks, three visits to the doctor, and one trip to the emergency room before experts at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention finally identified what ailed her, in September 2009.
Potter is the first known victim of a dengue fever outbreak that has since led to more than two dozen confirmed cases in Key West, and, health officials fear, may be headed north.
Health.com: America's healthiest beach and lake getaways
Also known as "breakbone fever" because of the shattering pain it causes, dengue fever is transmitted by a mosquito found in warm climates, and is not contagious. (Potter got several mosquito bites in Key West.) People often contract dengue fever without realizing they have it, but in some cases it can lead to dengue hemorrhagic fever, a severe form of the illness which causes internal bleeding and can lead to shock and even death.
A day after returning from her trip, Potter felt much worse. Her aches were joined by chills, a low-grade fever, and a pounding headache that Tylenol and Advil were powerless to stop.
"My head hurt so bad that I wouldn't wish it on my worst enemy," she recalls. "It hurt to move my eyes. I was getting to the point where I couldn't function mentally. I was in a fog."
Oddly, Potter also noticed that her urine was discolored. She suspected a urinary tract infection, as did her doctor, Adriane Trout, M.D., a family physician at Rochester General Hospital, who prescribed antibiotics.
Health.com: Your healthy travel planner
Two days later, Potter returned to Trout's office and failed an equilibrium test (like the one used in field sobriety tests). Trout sent her to the emergency room. The ER physicians originally suspected spinal meningitis, but after eight hours of tests -- including a spinal tap and a CT scan, both negative -- they hadn't confirmed a diagnosis.
So Potter went home. "I was down and out in my bed for eight days straight," she says. "Your bones just hurt. That's why it's called breakbone disease. It's indescribable. I can't even articulate the crazy pain that you're in. You feel like you're heavy and out of your body."
When Potter failed to improve, Trout began to suspect dengue fever -- even though she had never before encountered the illness.
"What tipped me off was she had a petechiae rash," Trout says, referring to a series of small red dots on the skin caused by broken capillaries (a form of internal bleeding). "And her [blood] platelets were low, and when I looked at her blood cells, one of the markers for a viral infection was high."
After consulting with a colleague who's an expert on infectious diseases, Trout arranged for a sample of Potter's blood to be sent to the CDC office in Puerto Rico to be tested for dengue fever.
Health.com: Travel health: What to do if you get ill
The tests came back positive, and with that Potter became the first confirmed case of the fever acquired in Florida since 1934.

Since Potter's diagnosis, the CDC and health officials in Florida have confirmed at least 28 cases of the fever in Key West. More than 1,000 other residents -- roughly 5 percent of the local population -- may have been exposed without getting ill, according to a CDC report released last week.
A suspected case in Miami reported last Thursday turned out to be a false alarm, but health officials are worried that the fever may spread northward. "We're concerned that if dengue gains a foothold in Key West, it will travel to other southern cities where the mosquito that transmits dengue is present, like Miami," the chief of the dengue branch at the CDC, Harold Margolis, said in a statement that accompanied the report.
Health: Beat the top summer health hazards
The symptoms Potter experienced were textbook. Often mistaken for the flu, dengue symptoms include nausea, fever, debilitating headaches, eye pain, and bloody urine. The rash noticed by Trout is a telltale sign of dengue hemorrhagic fever.
Rick Branch, 41, a U.S. Navy officer stationed in Key West, was among the first cases to be confirmed after Potter. He started feeling sick on the Monday after Easter Sunday earlier this year.
"It felt kind of like a hangover -- though I wasn't drinking the night before," he says. "I had a foggy head. I was a little bit tired."
Three hours later, Branch was freezing cold and had a fever. By Tuesday his joints were getting sore, and by Wednesday the pain was excruciating. "I could barely walk straight because the joints hurt so bad," he recalls. "They don't call it breaking-bones for nothing."
He had also developed a rash, and by Thursday his gums were bleeding. "I was hemorrhaging," he says.
Although Branch and his wife had looked up his symptoms on the Internet and began to suspect dengue fever, it wasn't until he was flown to Miami and saw four doctors there that dengue fever was seriously considered.
Health.com: Stay safe at the beach
Most cases of dengue fever resolve on their own within a week or two, and there's no treatment for the disease except supportive care. Even Branch and Potter -- who had relatively serious cases -- got confirmation that they'd had dengue only after they had fully recovered. Potter suffered through eight days of agony before her pain stopped and she slowly started to feel normal again.
The CDC and the local department of health in Key West are advising people traveling to the area to use mosquito repellent and wear long sleeves and pants. Residents should also remove any standing water around their homes to keep the mosquito population down, officials said. (Branch has already done so.)
Now that Potter and Branch have developed antibodies to the virus, they run the risk of an even worse reaction if they're ever infected again.
Potter, for one, isn't taking any chances. "I will never go to Key West again, certainly," she says. "No way."

Growing Power Conference - Register Now!

"Building the Good Food Revolution”
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Early bird registration until August 15. Register today! 
Learn the ins and outs of the food system at the Growing Power National -International Farm Conference. Early bird registration is until August 15th. Registration is only $275 for all three days including delicious local and organic meals. The menu is prepared by Will Allen himself. We want to guarantee your meals at the conference are delicious, nutritious and memorable.  Register today to reserve your spot!

Don't miss exciting line up of Speakers

Grace Lee Boggs

(Grace Lee Boggs will be joining us via video conferencing)

Grace Lee Boggs is an activist, writer and speaker whose more than sixty years of political involvement encompass the major U.S. social movements of this century: Labor, Civil rights, Black Power, Asian American, Women's and Environmental Justice. Born in Providence, R.I. of Chinese immigrant parents in l915, Grace received her B.A. from Barnard College in l935 and her Ph.D. in Philosophy from Bryn Mawr College in l940.

Dr. Judith Palfrey
Watch Dr. Judith Palfrey's speech at First Lady Michelle Obama's Let's Move Launch.
Dr. Judith Palfrey is currently the Director of the Children's International Pediatric Center and is working to establish training and service programs in international sites based on her experiences in the United States. She is the author of five books including Community Child Health (Praeger Press, 1994) and Child Health in America (Johns Hopkins Press, 2006).
Read more

Will Allen
Read more about Will. 

First Lady Michelle Obama (invited)
Will and MO Cropped Small

Urban Aquaculture Track

Learn about growing your food yourself, using aquaponic technology.  This workshop is designed to educate, enlighten, and inform participants, whether novices or experts, operating small or large facilities, in urban or rural environments about the critical aspects of aquaculture including fin fish husbandry and biology, water quality, system design and technology and fish health.
Workshop includes:
  • Production System Technology
  • Production Systems Water Chemistry
  • Adopting the Vertically Integrated Approach
  • General hygiene practices
  • Mortar and Brick natural systems
  • Fish Processing Workshop
See Fred Binkowski explains this track : Urban Agriculture : Fish from Freshwater
More details on other tracks next week!  

Building an Urban Farm Sponsors
Bonterra : Official Wine Sponsor
The NEA Foundation :Experiential Education Track Sponsor

Building a Community Garden Sponsor


Support the Good Food Revolution! Become a sponsor of this conference, your sponsorship will help us keep the registration fee low and delicious local foods in abundance throughout the conference.  Sponsorship opportunities available 
Exhibit Booths are still available. Be an exhibitor at this conference !
Advertise in our Program Book! The program book is chokeful of useful information that attendees will keep for years to come. Very affordable rates

For more information on the conference, please visit our official website at 
Growing Power News: 
We're back at Mayor's Garden this year. It's bigger than ever!  see photo gallery online
Special tickets for Outstanding in the Fields at Growing Power's Grant Park, it's a SOLD OUT event. Only 20 tickets available here before it is released.
2010 Copyright Growing Power, Inc.
Milwaukee WI

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Growing Power Inc
5500 W. Silver Spring Dr.
Milwaukee, Wisconsin 53218
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24 July 2010

Olatunji (music video)

Babatunde Olatunji and the power of rhythm
 Receive a 25% discount on your office visit in August when you bring a guest who is also seen as a client.
Your guest will also receive 50% off their office visit!
                         That is a huge savings.
                          Your health is your most  important resource.        
                             Make it a priority and set your appointment today.
                                  Call (240) 245-4147
Abundant Life Health Attainment Center
                                                12164 Central Ave Suite 227A
                                                     Mitchelleville, MD 20721
                        Free Online Health Assessment

Millions Poisoned In Gulf Disaster - EPA Whistle Blower


Censored Gulf news: People bleeding internally, millions poisoned says 'EPA whistleblower'

Chemical dispersants being released near Houma, Louisiana in the Gulf of Mexico
Photo: USCG/1planet1ocean

"...we have dolphins that are hemorrhaging. People who work near it are hemorrhaging internally. And that’s what dispersants are supposed to do... Congressman Markey and Nadler, as well as Senator Mikulski, have been heroes... Mark Kaufman, EPA whistleblower, Democracy Now!

Poisoning millions of people

In its report, EPA Whistleblower Accuses Agency of Covering Up Effects of Dispersant in BP Oil Spill Cleanup, Democracy Now! states that "many lawmakers and advocacy groups say the Obama administration is not being candid about the lethal effects of dispersants," so Amy Goodman interviewed Hugh Kaufman, a senior policy analyst at the EPA’s Office of Solid Waste and Emergency Response and a leading critic of the decision to use Corexit" who disclosed how the officials are lying about many things related to the catastrophe poisoning "millions of people." (Listen: Real Audio Strea or MP3 Download)
The rushed transcript includes Kaufman saying, "And I think the media now has to follow the money, just as they did in Watergate, and tell the American people who’s getting money for poisoning the millions of people in the Gulf. (Emphasis added)

"While concerns over the impact of chemical dispersants continue to grow, Gulf Coast residents are outraged by a recent announcement that the $20 billion government-administered claim fund will subtract money cleanup workers earn by working for the cleanup effort from any future claims.
The "Vessels of Opportunity" program has employed hundreds of Gulf Coast out of work people because of the spill which Kaufman says is viewed as yest another way "to limit the number of lawsuits against BP."
"And the government—both EPA, NOAA, etc.—have been sock puppets for BP in this cover-up. (Emphasis added)
Kaufman concurs with MSNBC's report last week, that "sole purpose in the Gulf for dispersants is to keep a cover-up going for BP to try to hide the volume of oil that has been released and save them hundreds of millions, if not billions, of dollars of fines... not to protect the public health or environment. Quite the opposite.."
He says to follow the money, and that leads to individuals in the Obama Administration, naming Mr. Geithner, Mr. Summers with close ties to Larry Fink who owns BlackRock that owns most BP shares.
He commented on the children being poisoned:
"...you know, when you’re on the sand with your children and they dig, and there’s a little water?—they documented there was over 200 parts per million of oil waste in the water, and it’s not noticeable to the human eye...  On top of it, the contamination in one of the samples was so high that when they put the solvent in, as a first step in identifying how much oil may be in the water, the thing blew up, just as he said, probably because there was too much Corexit in that particular sample."
When Goodman asked Kaufman to comment on the similarities between the Ground Zero of the Gulf catastrophe and what happened at Ground Zero of 911, he explained that he did the ombudsman investigation on Ground Zero, "where EPA made false statements about the safety of the air" ... since proven to be false.
Red herring: No more tests needed. Corexit known to be dangerous.

"The largest ingredient in Corexit is oil. But there are other materials. And when the ingredients are mixed with oil, the combination of Corexit or any dispersant and oil is more toxic than the oil itself. But EPA has all that information.
"That’s a red herring issue being raised, that we have to somehow know more information. When you look at the label and you look at the toxicity sheets that come with it, the public knows enough to know that it’s very dangerous. The National Academy of Science has done work on it. Toxicologists from Exxon that developed it have published on it.
"So, we know enough to know that it’s very dangerous, and to say that we just have to know more about it is a red herring issue. We know plenty. It’s very dangerous."
"[T]he media now has to follow the money, just as they did in Watergate, and tell the American people who’s getting money for poisoning the millions of people in the Gulf."
No mention was made by the whistleblower about military involvement in this operationnor that the DoD has been in bed with EPA for decades, testing aerosol sprayed chemicals on unwitting individuals and large populations.
With all eyes on big bad BP, could it be the real red herring?
Photo: Democracy Now!

Why Ronald McDonald Can't Be Trusted

One of the reasons to never buy 'food' from corporations, besides the fact that they don't actually sell food, they sell 'food products', is that corporations can not be trusted. They think that food is a business, but they are wrong and if you aren't careful they will make you dead wrong. Food is life itself and is therefore sacred. But what do the 'artificial persons', which corporations are legally defined to be, know about life, food or health? They only care about their 'life blood' which is money. Food, as found growing in Nature, as created by God, to a corporation has to be manufactured into a food product. Healthy to a corporation means profitable. They speak a language which is confusing to us human beings. Notice how they make up words like 'mcnuggets' that you never heard of before. So as one human being to another, who also is not an artificial person, beware the corporation!

Chicken McNuggets Contain Disturbing Additives

Posted By Dr. Mercola
chicken nuggetsIn response to reports that the ingredients may pose health risks, McDonald's China claims that additives in its chicken McNuggets are "harmless".
They said that the use of tertiary butylhydroquinone meets Chinese food safety standards. However, "the chemical is toxic to some extent," according to Liu Qingchun, a nutritionist at the General Hospital of Armed Police Forces.
Bloomberg reports:
"McNuggets served in the U.S. also contain tertiary butylhydroquinone, a petroleum-based product, and dimethylpolysiloxane, an anti-foaming agent used in cosmetics and other goods.
McDonald's Holdings Co. Japan also serves chicken with the additives".



Dr. Mercola's Comments:

Most people don't realize this, but McDonald's fare, as unhealthy as it is in general, is even worse in some countries than others.
According to McDonald's, the reason for the differences in ingredients is "local tastes." For example, US McNuggets not only contain more calories and fat than British McNuggets, they and also contain chemical additives not found in the British nuggets, according to a recent CNN report.
And although Bloomberg made it sound like China's McNuggets are tainted with questionable chemicals, it turns out the same chemicals are used in American McNuggets as well.  
The two chemicals in question are:
  1. Dimethyl polysiloxane, an anti-foaming agent used in cosmetics and a variety of other goods
  2. Tertiary butylhydroquinone (TBHQ), a petroleum-based product with antioxidant properties
According to CNN:
"Dimethyl polysiloxane is used as a matter of safety to keep the oil from foaming, Lisa McComb [who handles global media relations for McDonald's] says. The chemical is a form of silicone also used in cosmetics and Silly Putty.
A review of animal studies by The World Health Organization found no adverse health effects associated with dimethyl polysiloxane.
TBHQ [tertiary butylhydroquinone] is a preservative for vegetable oils and animal fats, limited to .02 percent of the oil in the nugget."

Are these Food Additives Really Safe to Eat?

After searching for information about these two chemicals, I'm left with more questions than answers.
At its 19th and 21st meetings, the Joint FAO/WHO Expert Committee on Food Additives determined that tertiary butylhydroquinone (TBHQ) was safe for human consumption at levels of 0-0.5 mg/kg of body weight.
More recently, the Codex commission set the maximum allowable limits up to between 100 to as much as 400 mg/kg, depending on the food it's added to – chewing gum being allowed the highest levels of TBHQ.
However, according to CNN:
"One gram (one-thirtieth of an ounce) [of TBHQ] can cause "nausea, vomiting, ringing in the ears, delirium, a sense of suffocation, and collapse," according to A Consumer's Dictionary of Food Additives."
So what IS TBHQ anyway?
TBHQ, although listed as an "antioxidant," is a SYNTHETIC chemical with antioxidant properties, commonly used as a food stabilizer. It prevents oxidation of fats and oils, thereby extending shelf life of processed foods.
It's used in a wide variety of processed foods, including:
  • Vegetable oils
  • Baked goods
  • Flavoring and spices
  • Margarine
  • Cereals and grains
  • Snack foods like potato chips
But you can also find it in varnishes, lacquers, resins, oil field additives, and pesticide products, and it is commonly used in cosmetics and perfumes to reduce the evaporation rate and improve stability.
So, I decided to check and see how the cosmetics industry rates the chemical.
The Environmental Working Group (EWG) rates TBHQ as a "moderate hazard," but most interestingly, Canada has prohibited and restricted its use in cosmetics.
Perhaps Canada decided to pay attention to the limited research available on this chemical… The EWG lists a number of health hazards associated with TBHQ, such as:
  • One or more animal studies show liver effects at very low doses
  • One or more in vitro tests on mammalian cells show positive mutation results
  • One or more animal studies show biochemical changes at very low doses where the human health implications are not yet well understood
  • One or more animal studies show reproductive effects at high doses
The good news is that it is not suspected to be a persistent toxin, meaning your body is probably able to eliminate it so that it does not bioaccumulate.
As for the anti-foaming agent dimethyl polysiloxane, although it "sounds" bad, it does not appear to have any known toxicity, although I have to wonder if it's because it hasn't undergone any significant safety studies in the first place…

Other Dangerous Ingredients Found on McDonald's Menu

Whether or not TBHQ and dimethyl polysiloxane are necessarily worthy of significant concern, McDonald's foods contain plenty of other ingredients that can seriously harm your health.
If you have not yet seen Morgan Spurlock's documentary Super-Size Me, I highly recommend it. It's a real-life illustration of just how dangerous – life threatening, in fact – a fast food diet can really be! Morgan's life; his physique and his health, dramatically changes in just FOUR WEEKS when he switches to a 100 percent Mickey-D diet.
It's quite clear that fast food leads to obesity and insulin resistance – and just as Spurlock proved in his film, it doesn't take long.
It also doesn't take much: One 15-year study found that those who ate fast food twice a week or more gained 10 pounds more and were twice as likely to develop insulin resistance than those who ate it less than once a week, even after other lifestyle factors were accounted for.
But that's not all.
Many of the foods on their menu, especially those that contain "natural flavors" or "hydrolyzed protein" as ingredients, contain MSG. Glutamic acid (MSG) is a toxic substance that literally kills your brain cells.
For more in-depth information about MSG, I highly recommend reading Dr. Russell's Blaylock's book, Excitotoxins: The Taste That Kills.
MSG makes the food taste good, no matter what it's made of, and it's inexpensive, making it the perfect processed food additive.
The bottom line is that if you want to stay healthy, and keep your children healthy, you have to avoid fast food and other processed foods, and invest some time in your kitchen, cooking from scratch.
Cooking for your children may actually have extremely far reaching benefits, because it is now well known that dietary changes can prompt epigenetic DNA changes that can be passed on to future generations. For instance, pregnant rats fed a fatty diet had daughters and granddaughters with a greater risk of breast cancer.
Could it be that we're just now starting to see the generational effects of our grandparents' and parents' penchant for processed foods?
But the good news is you can change the trend, and you can "override" genetic predispositions by choosing your foods wisely today.