Obesity epidemic affecting animals too

According to a newly published article in Scientific American, animals too have become obese in epidemic proportions in recent years, as humans have. So did animals suddenly become lazy, complacent slobs in the past 20 years or so, or is obesity an epidemic with root causes that have little to do with lifestyle and personal choice, and more to do with environmental factors and food modification?

In an article published at the Mainstream Media Review, a strong case is made that our food is being intentionally modified for nefarious purposes, to the detriment of our health.

Here are some excerpts and links to both articles:

If I told you that Americans are being starved to death, you would probably laugh at me. So read and learn, because it is no laughing matter. I am about to show you that Americans are, quite literally, starving to death. Sure, Americans eat, even overeat, but we are still being starved to death, deliberately, at a nutritional level. So please put aside your programmed bias and suppositions of obesity, and let’s begin.

"Obesity is a mask for the horrible truth. That Americans are starving to death in a deliberate campaign of nutricide.” –JITB 01/09


Weight gain is usually blamed on poor diet and a lack of exercise. But the marmosets and macaques living at a Madison, Wis., laboratory have followed the same diet and exercise regimens since 1982. Still, they grew heavier with each passing decade, leading David B. Allison, a biostatistician at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, to believe that environmental factors may be at play. He and his colleagues studied weight changes in 20,000 animals, including primates and rodents used for research, domestic cats and dogs, and urban feral rats. They tracked the animals’ percentage weight gain per decade, as well as their odds of being obese. Both showed a strong upward tendency. Chimpanzees grew 33.6 percent heavier per decade; mice grew 12.46 percent heavier.

Allison speculates that factors such as endocrine-disrupting toxins in the water supply or pathogens affecting mammalian metabolism may be to blame. But some say his data could be explained by diet and ex­ercise changes—caused, perhaps, by an increase in the numbers of lab animals being housed in a single cage. Allison agrees that housing might affect metabolism, but humans, too, live in increasingly crowded conditions. “This is exactly the kind of innovative thinking ... we think our results warrant,” he says. “If density of housing affects weights in animals, maybe density of housing also affects body weight in humans.”


Martial Law Declared for Super Bowl

6 Weird Things That Influence Bad Behavior More Than Laws

Diligent readers of Cracked already know that our brains can be tricked by just about anything: manipulated images, our birth order and shiny things. But we can also be tricked into being generous, good people by our surroundings.

Of course, it goes the other way, too. Your morality at any given moment can be influenced by ...


NYC smoking ban extended to parks, Times Square

You have got to be kidding me. The stupid, it burns. Has anyone taken a whiff of NYC in the past, oh, two centuries? That stank ain't tobacco.

NEW YORK — Lawmakers have voted to extend New York City's smoking ban to parks, beaches — and Times Square.

The ban approved Wednesday by a vote of 36-12 is one of the most ambitious outdoor anti-tobacco efforts in the U.S. City Council Speaker Christine Quinn says the new law will save lives and make New York a healthier place to live.

The smoking ban will cover some 1,700 parks and 14 miles of public beaches plus boardwalks, marinas and pedestrian plazas. It goes into effect 90 days after Mayor Michael Bloomberg signs the bill; the mayor has 20 days to do it.

A law banning smoking in New York City bars and restaurants went into effect in 2003.

Backers of the ban say even brief exposure to secondhand smoke can pose health risks.

Many smokers say the law will infringe on their rights.



The Organic Elite Surrenders To Monsanto: What Now?

"The policy set for GE alfalfa will most likely guide policies for other GE crops as well. True coexistence is a must." -- Whole Foods Market, Jan. 21, 2011

In the wake of a 12-year battle to keep Monsanto's Genetically Engineered (GE) crops from contaminating the nation's 25,000 organic farms and ranches, America's organic consumers and producers are facing betrayal. A self-appointed cabal of the Organic Elite, spearheaded by Whole Foods Market, Organic Valley, and Stonyfield Farm, has decided it's time to surrender to Monsanto. Top executives from these companies have publicly admitted that they no longer oppose the mass commercialization of GE crops, such as Monsanto's controversial Roundup Ready alfalfa, and are prepared to sit down and cut a deal for "coexistence" with Monsanto and USDA biotech cheerleader Tom Vilsack.

In a cleverly worded, but profoundly misleading email sent to its customers last week, Whole Foods Market, while proclaiming their support for organics and "seed purity," gave the green light to USDA bureaucrats to approve the "conditional deregulation" of Monsanto's genetically engineered, herbicide-resistant alfalfa. Beyond the regulatory euphemism of "conditional deregulation," this means that WFM and their colleagues are willing to go along with the massive planting of a chemical and energy-intensive GE perennial crop, alfalfa; guaranteed to spread its mutant genes and seeds across the nation; guaranteed to contaminate the alfalfa fed to organic animals; guaranteed to lead to massive poisoning of farm workers and destruction of the essential soil food web by the toxic herbicide, Roundup; and guaranteed to produce Roundup-resistant superweeds that will require even more deadly herbicides such as 2,4 D to be sprayed on millions of acres of alfalfa across the U.S.

In exchange for allowing Monsanto's premeditated pollution of the alfalfa gene pool, WFM wants "compensation." In exchange for a new assault on farmworkers and rural communities (a recent large-scale Swedish study found that spraying Roundup doubles farm workers' and rural residents' risk of getting cancer), WFM expects the pro-biotech USDA to begin to regulate rather than cheerlead for Monsanto. In payment for a new broad spectrum attack on the soil's crucial ability to provide nutrition for food crops and to sequester dangerous greenhouse gases (recent studies show that Roundup devastates essential soil microorganisms that provide plant nutrition and sequester climate-destabilizing greenhouse gases), WFM wants the Biotech Bully of St. Louis to agree to pay "compensation" (i.e. hush money) to farmers "for any losses related to the contamination of his crop."

In its email of Jan. 21, 2011 WFM calls for "public oversight by the USDA rather than reliance on the biotechnology industry," even though WFM knows full well that federal regulations on Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs) do not require pre-market safety testing, nor labeling; and that even federal judges have repeatedly ruled that so-called government "oversight" of Frankencrops such as Monsanto's sugar beets and alfalfa is basically a farce. At the end of its email, WFM admits that its surrender to Monsanto is permanent: "The policy set for GE alfalfa will most likely guide policies for other GE crops as well True coexistence is a must."

Full article at link:



Resolution Calling to Amend the Constitution Banning Corporate Personhood Introduced in Vermont

On the anniversary of the Citizens United decision, Vermont politicians are moving to deny corporations the rights that humans enjoy.

January 22, 2011

A year ago today, the Supreme Court issued its bizarre Citizens United decision, allowing unlimited corporate spending in elections as a form of “free speech” for the corporate “person.” Justice John Paul Stevens, writing for the dissent, had the task of recalling the majority to planet earth and basic common sense.

"Corporations have no consciences, no beliefs, no feelings, no thoughts, no desires," wrote Stevens. "Corporations help structure and facilitate the activities of human beings, to be sure, and their 'personhood' often serves as a useful legal fiction. But they are not themselves members of 'We the People' by whom and for whom our Constitution was established."

Fortunately, movements are afoot to reverse a century of accumulated powers and protections granted to corporations by wacky judicial decisions.

Details at link:


Alex Jones: Corporations, US government run news media

Bill to block lawsuits for false accusations of terrorism

New York Republican Peter King has introduced a bill that would protect the army of citizen spies Homeland Security hopes to recruit under Janet Napolitano’s “See Something, Say Something” snoop campaign from lawsuits brought by innocent people wrongly accused of being terrorists or extremists.

“A top US lawmaker unveiled legislation on Wednesday to protect individuals who tip off authorities to potential extremist threats from lawsuits, in the event that they turn out to finger innocents,” reports AFP.

Details at link:


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