Showing posts from October 23, 2015

Bacon and other processed meats cause cancer, claims WHO report

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[For all you "because... bacon" types out there. *RON*]
Ian Johnston, The Independent, 23 October 2015

The World Health Organisation is reportedly planning to declare that bacon, sausages and other processed meat cause cancer.

Red meat is also expected to be listed as being “probably carcinogenic to humans”.

A source told The Daily Mail that the announcements were expected to be made on Monday with processed meat put in the same category as cigarettes, alcohol and asbestos.

The NHS Choices website says that “evidence shows that there is probably a link between eating red and processed meat and the risk of bowel cancer”.

“People who eat a lot of these meats are at higher risk of bowel cancer than those who eat small amounts,” it adds.

Two Canadians among top five pianists at prestigious Chopin competition

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[This is cool: it's the first time a Canadian has every placed in the top 3 of the Chopin international competition in Poland. You can view his wonderful Stage II performance by clicking on this sentence. *RON*]

Tu Thanh Ha, The Globe and Mail, 12 October, 2015

A Canadian has placed second at the prestigious Chopin international competition, which has been a launchpad for classical music’s top concert pianists.

The gold medal for the 17th edition of the Warsaw-based event was awarded on Tuesday to Seong-Jin Cho of South Korea while the second spot was awarded to Charles Richard-Hamelin, 26, from Quebec.

A second Canadian, 16-year-old Yike (Tony) Yang from Toronto, placed fifth.

It was the first time that Canadians had made it to the final round of the competition, which is dedicated solely to the works of 19th-century composer Frédéric Chopin.

Kate Liu of the United States placed third, Eric Lu of the United States came fourth and Dmitry Shishkin…

Paul Ryan's 'Family Values' Are that Only Elite Families Have Value

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[From the front lines of the US class war. Paul Ryan has "has repeatedly opposed Democratic efforts to make family leave available to Americans who aren’t privileged enough to be congressmen." But Ryan isn't a hypocrite. He just sees thinks the rich and powerful are special and different. *RON*]
By Amanda MarcotteSalon, 22 October 2015

Critics of Sheryl Sandberg’s Lean In project argue that her brand of feminism is only for elite people, focused more on telling privileged people to throw their weight around at work than on the systemic issues that make it hard for people, especially people who have no power to set their own work schedules, to have a good work-life balance. She confirmed these suspicions Wednesday with an obnoxious Facebook post congratulating Paul Ryan for using his power to get weekends home with the family. It’s complete with this photo of him at a Packers game with the kids.

Killing Off Community Banks - Intended Consequence of Dodd-Frank?

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[The farce that is Dodd-Frank. Perpetrated under Obama and certain, if anything, to be even further weakened under Clinton, who has never seen a Wall Street banker she didn't like (and take money from). *RON*]
By Ellen Brown, Truthout, 23 October 2015
Truthout can only survive through reader support. Click here to make a tax-deductible donation and help publish journalism that fights corporate power!

At over 2,300 pages, the Dodd Frank Act is the longest and most complicated bill ever passed by the US legislature. It was supposed to end "too big to fail" and "bailouts," and to "promote financial stability." But Dodd-Frank's "orderly liquidation authority" has replaced bailouts with bail-ins, meaning that in the event of insolvency, big banks are to recapitalize themselves with the savings of their creditors and depositors. The banks deemed too big are more than 30% bigger than before the Act was pass…

Mormons Say Duty to Law on Same-Sex Marriage Trumps Faith

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[An admirable and unusual ability for a religious group to understand and support the separation of church and state. *RON*]

By Jack Hely, New York Times, 22 October 2015

DENVER — Despite its deep opposition to same-sex marriage, the Mormon Church is setting itself apart from religious conservatives who rallied behind a Kentucky county clerk, Kim Davis, who cited her religious beliefs as justification for refusing to grant marriage licenses to same-sex couples.

In a speech this week about the boundaries between church and state, Dallin Oaks, a high-ranking apostle in the church, said that public officials like Ms. Davis, the clerk in Rowan County, Ky., had a duty to follow the law, despite their religious convictions.

“Office holders remain free to draw upon their personal beliefs and motivations and advocate their positions in the public square,” Elder Oaks said. “But when acting as public officials, they are not free to apply personal convictions…

B.C. Privacy Commissioner delivers scathing report on access to information practices

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[Accountable democracy, BC style. The Clark government has come up with a bland non-response; we'll have to see if these very serious charges get any traction in our highly conservative local press. A bombshell report from the privacy commissioner shows the Christy Clark government is very good at blocking access to information. See also: George Gretes, B.C. Ministerial Assistant, Likely Lied Under Oath: Privacy Commissioner and B.C. Open Government Went From 'Key Priority' To 'What's That?' *RON*]
By Yuliya Talmazan, Global News, 22 October 2015
B.C. Privacy Commissioner Elizabeth Denham is sounding the alarm over the investigation into access to information practices of two provincial government ministries and the Office of the Premier.

Denham’s report suggests investigators uncovered negligent searches for records, a failure to keep adequate email records, a failure to document searches and the willful destruction of rec…

Canada and the Anti-Austerity Movement

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[The amounts of money Trudeau proposes to spend are in fact quite small, but he's taken an important step by helping to break the hypnotic spell of 'the balanced budget.' "In Canada, however, Trudeau showed that it is possible to gain support for a modest dose of Keynesianism...  The eyes of the world will be on Canada." *RON*]
By John Cassidy, The New Yorker, 21 October 2015

The election result in Canada was fascinating in many ways. As my Canadian colleague Jeremy Keehn wrote on Tuesday, and as Michael Ignatieff, a former leader of the triumphant Liberal Party, also noted, in the Financial Times, it represented a welcome repudiation of the politics of reaction and division exercised by Stephen Harper, the former Conservative Prime Minister. Justin Trudeau, Harper’s successor, won “not just because Canadians wanted a change of regime but also because Canadians wanted a change of politics,” Ignatieff wrote.

Good for the Canad…

There's now a $1-a-pill competitor to pharma CEO Martin Shkreli's $750-a-pill drug

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Lydia Ramsey, Business Insider, 22 October 2015

Almost a month after word got out that drug-company CEO Martin Shkreli had jacked up the price of a critical drug by more than 5,000%, a different kind of pharma company has stepped up to provide a cheaper alternative.

Imprimis Pharmaceuticals, a compounding pharmaceutical company, announced Thursday that it is now providing a customizable formulation to compete with Daraprim, a drug used to treat a parasitic infection called toxoplasmosis in people with compromised immune systems.

Shkreli jacked up the cost of Daraprim from $13.50 to $750 a pill seemingly overnight.

Imprimis is charging $99 for a 100-pill bottle of the drug, or $0.99 a pill.