Tuesday, August 28, 2012

From the American Council on Science and Health


With apologies to my attorney friends, the saying "95 percent of lawyers make the rest of them look bad" remains one of my favorites.  And a story in yesterday's New York Times did little to change this. The lawyers who were involved with negotiating the Tobacco Master Settlement Agreement (MSA) of 1999 (and made obscene amounts of money in the process) are now going after food manufacturers using a similar strategy. This is almost funny.  According to the Times, Don Barrett, a lawyer in Mississippi earned a mere $200 million from the MSA, but he apparently can't live on that, so he and his well-meaning colleagues are suing ConAgra, a giant Nebraska-based food company, for mislabeling a number of their products, including the always-dangerous Swiss Miss cocoa……In the end, Big Tobacco, looking to cut their losses, "agreed" to a shakedown by lawyers representing individual states, which, instead of funding anti-smoking programs simply grabbed the money and used it as a bank account. The addicted smokers got next to nothing, but this was hardly true for the lawyers--they got between 10 and 25 percent of the take depending on the state they represented--tens of billions of dollars.

Government at its finest.


Is there a safe, effective vaccine that not only protects young people from the most common sexually transmitted infection (STI) in America, but also protects them from a wide variety of cancers later on? If I were to tell you that such a vaccine exists, but only a small minority of teens receives this protection, would you be shocked, surprised?
This is not some vain, pie-in-the-sky hope: it’s real. A vaccine against the common human papillomavirus (HPV) has been available for five years now — in fact, there are now two similar vaccines, and they’re both safe and effective. And as it turns out, HPV not only causes STDs, such as genital warts, it also is the primary cause of cancer of the cervix.

Breast or bottle?  The decision is not black and white.
A new mother is faced with many important issues and must make key decisions while still in the fog of post-partum joy — and pain, and confusion. One such decision is whether to breastfeed or “hit the bottle”: 
infant formula.  It has become fairly common knowledge that, from the perspective of baby’s overall health, exclusive breastfeeding for the first six months has the edge over the bottle. Breast milk enhances baby’s immune system, seems to reduce the risk of obesity later on, and often provides a uniquely pleasurable bonding experience for both parent and child.  Nevertheless, new moms are unable or unwilling to devote the rather large amounts of time and effort towards this goal. The reasons why new moms reach for the formula are many, ranging from necessity to purely optional or convenient. There is no “wrong” answer to this situation: while in recent years, more women are choosing to give breastfeeding a try, not too many years ago bottle-fed babies were the norm — and no harm came to them.

My Take - Even more importantly, it isn't the mayor's job to determine these things.  It fascinates me that someone this egomaniacal could become so successful in so much of his life, but then maybe that is where he acquired his ego.  Being so successful in his business life is what perhaps  convinced him that he "knew" best for everyone else also.   Even if he is right….it isn’t his business or his job.  He needs to focus on garbage pickup, street repair, adequate safety forces and the stuff he was actually hired to do. Just run the city….that’s it!  So why is it so hard for these people to understand that?  Because leftism requires grand schemes to run everyone's life in order to bring about utopia.  It is too bad that all they leave in their wake is dystopia…including bed bugs.  That was caused by the EPA and their greenie masters.    RK



If there is one medical area where drug development has been hampered by extreme caution, it is obesity. Despite the "epidemic" of obesity and its associated type II diabetes we hear so much about, new weight loss candidates have been handled by pharmaceutical companies and the FDA as if they were Kryptonite. This is clearly due to the fallout from the fen-phen debacle of 1997, when Wyeth was forced to withdraw the two-drug combination pill called Redux because of serious side effects — heart valve damage and, in rare cases, a fatal lung condition called primary pulmonary hypertension. In addition to the people who suffered or died from these side effects, the withdrawal of Redux was a major blow to patients struggling to control their weight, since it was pretty much the only effective weight loss drug available at that time. Even after the withdrawal was announced, some people desperately tried to buy the remaining inventory, since it was the only drug that ever worked for them.


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