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Member since: Wed Feb 10, 2010, 01:12 PM
Number of posts: 4,959

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DELIGHTFUL PICS: The Obamas host their last White House Easter Egg Roll


The Obamas host their last White House Easter Egg Roll

1 hour ago

It's a 138-year-old tradition to invite the nation's children to the White House lawn for an Easter celebration. Celebrities like Christian Bale, Beyoncé and Shaq attended this year.


Posted by proverbialwisdom | Mon Mar 28, 2016, 03:51 PM (14 replies)

American Academy of Pediatrics March 2016 issue


March 2016, VOLUME 137 / ISSUE 3

From the American Academy of Pediatrics
Policy Statement
Recommended Childhood and Adolescent Immunization Schedule—United States, 2016



March 2016, VOLUME 137 / ISSUE 3

Childhood Vaccine Exemption Policy: The Case for a Less Restrictive Alternative

Douglas J. Opel, Matthew P. Kronman, Douglas S. Diekema, Edgar K. Marcuse, Jeffrey S. Duchin, Eric Kodish

Abbreviations: MV — measles vaccine, NME — nonmedical exemption, VPD — vaccine-preventable disease

Efforts to restrict parents’ ability to exempt children from receiving vaccinations required for school entry have recently reached a pinnacle. The American Medical Association voiced support for eliminating nonmedical exemptions (NMEs) from school vaccine requirements,1 and California enacted legislation doing so.2 Although laudable in their objective, policies eliminating NMEs from all vaccines are scientifically and ethically problematic. In the present article, we argue for an exemption policy that eliminates NMEs just for the measles vaccine (MV) and is pursued only after other less restrictive approaches have been implemented and deemed unsuccessful.

DOI http://dx.doi.org/10.1542/peds.2015-4230
PubMed http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26993127

Published By American Academy of Pediatrics
Print ISSN 0031-4005
Online ISSN 1098-4275

Copyright © 2016 by the American Academy of Pediatrics

Author Information: Douglas J. Opel, MD, MPHa,b, Matthew P. Kronman, MD, MSCEb, Douglas S. Diekema, MD, MPHa,b,c, Edgar K. Marcuse, MD, MPHb, Jeffrey S. Duchin, MDd,e,f, and Eric Kodish, MDg

aTreuman Katz Center for Pediatric Bioethics, Seattle Children’s Research Institute, and
bDepartments of Pediatrics and
dMedicine, University of Washington School of Medicine, Seattle, Washington;
cDepartments of Health Services and
eEpidemiology, University of Washington School of Public Health, Seattle, Washington;
fCommunicable Disease Epidemiology and Immunization Section, Public Health–Seattle and King County, Seattle, Washington; and
gDepartment of Bioethics, Center for Ethics, Humanities and Spiritual Care, Cleveland Clinic, Cleveland, Ohio

Dr Opel conceptualized and designed the study and drafted the initial manuscript; and Drs Kronman, Diekema, Marcuse, Duchin, and Kodish reviewed and revised the manuscript. All authors approved the final manuscript as submitted and agree to be accountable for all aspects of the work.

Posted by proverbialwisdom | Thu Mar 24, 2016, 02:09 PM (0 replies)

Review "JUSTICE SOTOMAYOR, with whom JUSTICE GINSBURG joins, dissenting."


CASE: Bruesewitz v. Wyeth
Dissent p30

All hail bad memes, NOT.

Posted by proverbialwisdom | Sun Mar 20, 2016, 01:12 PM (0 replies)

EFF: "Worried about Apple? California Has a Bill That Would Disable Encryption on All Phones"


March 9, 2016 | By Andrew Crocker
Worried about Apple? California Has a Bill That Would Disable Encryption on All Phones

Smartphone users in California take notice: a new CA State Assembly bill would ban default encryption features on all smartphones. Assembly Bill 1681, introduced in January by Assemblymember Jim Cooper (D), would require any smartphone sold in California “to be capable of being decrypted and unlocked by its manufacturer or its operating system provider.” This is perhaps even more drastic than the legal precedent at stake in Apple’s ongoing showdown with the Justice Department, in which the government is trying to force a private company to write code undermining key security features in specific cases.

Both Apple and Google currently encrypt smartphones running their iOS and Android operating systems by default. A.B. 1681 would undo this default, penalizing manufacturers and providers of operating systems $2,500 per device that cannot be decrypted at the time of sale.

Similar proposals have been made by Manhattan district attorney Cyrus Vance Jr., who published a white paper [pdf] in November 2015 arguing that law enforcement needs to access the contents of smartphones to solve a range of crimes. A nearly identical bill is also pending in the New York State Assembly.

EFF opposes A.B. 1681 and all other state proposals to regulate smartphone encryption because they are terrible policy. If passed, A.B. 1681 would leave law-abiding Californians at risk for identity theft, data breach, stalking, and other invasions of privacy, with little benefit to law enforcement. It would be both ineffective and impossible to enforce. And, if that weren’t enough, it suffers from serious constitutional infirmities.

Meanwhile, in the U.S. Congress, Representative Ted Lieu has introduced H.R. 4528, the ENCRYPT Act, which would definitively preempt state bills like A.B. 1681. EFF agrees this is the right approach to state legislation in this area, although we’d like H.R. 4528 to go further and also prevent Congress and the rest of the federal government from undermining encryption.



Cooper Appointed to Key Leadership Position
Created: Thursday, 10 March 2016 11:51

SACRAMENTO – Today, Assemblymember Jim Cooper (D-Elk Grove) was appointed by Speaker Anthony Rendon to serve as Assistant Majority Floor Leader as part of the Speaker’s new leadership team.

“I want to thank Speaker Rendon for appointing me to his leadership team,” said Cooper “I am honored to be chosen to serve as Assistant Majority Floor Leader during a new era in the State Assembly. I look forward to continuing to work with Speaker Rendon and our members to make California a better place to live, work, and raise a family.”

Assemblymember Cooper represents the Cities of Sacramento, Elk Grove, Galt, and Lodi.
Posted by proverbialwisdom | Sun Mar 13, 2016, 04:45 PM (1 replies)

Food isn't just about taste? Food shouldn't contain untested synthetic chemicals?



Posted by proverbialwisdom | Fri Mar 11, 2016, 01:17 PM (1 replies)

National Acad of Sciences: "genetic transformation has potential to produce unanticipated allergens"


The New England Journal of Medicine

GMOs, Herbicides, and Public Health

Philip J. Landrigan, M.D., and Charles Benbrook, Ph.D.

N Engl J Med 2015; 373:693-695
August 20, 2015
DOI: 10.1056/NEJMp1505660

Genetically modified organisms (GMOs) are not high on most physicians' worry lists. If we think at all about biotechnology, most of us probably focus on direct threats to human health, such as prospects for converting pathogens to biologic weapons or the implications of new technologies for editing the human germline. But while those debates simmer, the application of biotechnology to agriculture has been rapid and aggressive. The vast majority of the corn and soybeans grown in the United States are now genetically engineered. Foods produced from GM crops have become ubiquitous. And unlike regulatory bodies in 64 other countries, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) does not require labeling of GM foods.

Two recent developments are dramatically changing the GMO landscape. First, there have been sharp increases in the amounts and numbers of chemical herbicides applied to GM crops, and still further increases — the largest in a generation — are scheduled to occur in the next few years. Second, the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) has classified glyphosate, the herbicide most widely used on GM crops, as a “probable human carcinogen”1 and classified a second herbicide, 2,4-dichlorophenoxyacetic acid (2,4-D), as a “possible human carcinogen.”2

The application of genetic engineering to agriculture builds on the ancient practice of selective breeding. But unlike traditional selective breeding, genetic engineering vastly expands the range of traits that can be moved into plants and enables breeders to import DNA from virtually anywhere in the biosphere. Depending on the traits selected, genetically engineered crops can increase yields, thrive when irrigated with salty water, or produce fruits and vegetables resistant to mold and rot.

The National Academy of Sciences has twice reviewed the safety of GM crops — in 2000 and 2004.3 Those reviews, which focused almost entirely on the genetic aspects of biotechnology, concluded that GM crops pose no unique hazards to human health. They noted that genetic transformation has the potential to produce unanticipated allergens or toxins and might alter the nutritional quality of food. Both reports recommended development of new risk-assessment tools and postmarketing surveillance. Those recommendations have largely gone unheeded.


In our view, the science and the risk assessment supporting the Enlist Duo decision are flawed. The science consisted solely of toxicologic studies commissioned by the herbicide manufacturers in the 1980s and 1990s and never published, not an uncommon practice in U.S. pesticide regulation. These studies predated current knowledge of low-dose, endocrine-mediated, and epigenetic effects and were not designed to detect them. The risk assessment gave little consideration to potential health effects in infants and children, thus contravening federal pesticide law. It failed to consider ecologic impact, such as effects on the monarch butterfly and other pollinators. It considered only pure glyphosate, despite studies showing that formulated glyphosate that contains surfactants and adjuvants is more toxic than the pure compound.

The second new development is the determination by the IARC in 2015 that glyphosate is a “probable human carcinogen”1 and 2,4-D a “possible human carcinogen.”2 These classifications were based on comprehensive assessments of the toxicologic and epidemiologic literature that linked both herbicides to dose-related increases in malignant tumors at multiple anatomical sites in animals and linked glyphosate to an increased incidence of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma in humans.

These developments suggest that GM foods and the herbicides applied to them may pose hazards to human health that were not examined in previous assessments. We believe that the time has therefore come to thoroughly reconsider all aspects of the safety of plant biotechnology. The National Academy of Sciences has convened a new committee to reassess the social, economic, environmental, and human health effects of GM crops. This development is welcome, but the committee's report is not expected until at least 2016.

In the meantime, we offer two recommendations. First, we believe the EPA should delay implementation of its decision to permit use of Enlist Duo. This decision was made in haste. It was based on poorly designed and outdated studies and on an incomplete assessment of human exposure and environmental effects. It would have benefited from deeper consideration of independently funded studies published in the peer-reviewed literature. And it preceded the recent IARC determinations on glyphosate and 2,4-D. Second, the National Toxicology Program should urgently assess the toxicology of pure glyphosate, formulated glyphosate, and mixtures of glyphosate and other herbicides.

Finally, we believe the time has come to revisit the United States' reluctance to label GM foods. Labeling will deliver multiple benefits. It is essential for tracking emergence of novel food allergies and assessing effects of chemical herbicides applied to GM crops. It would respect the wishes of a growing number of consumers who insist they have a right to know what foods they are buying and how they were produced. And the argument that there is nothing new about genetic rearrangement misses the point that GM crops are now the agricultural products most heavily treated with herbicides and that two of these herbicides may pose risks of cancer. We hope, in light of this new information, that the FDA will reconsider labeling of GM foods and couple it with adequately funded, long-term postmarketing surveillance.

Link from: http://ecowatch.com/2015/08/24/mark-hyman-labeling-gmos/
Related: http://ecowatch.com/2015/01/23/health-problems-linked-to-monsanto-roundup/



First of all, there’s no data (at least that I know of–feel free to provide if you have it) linking GMOs to the rising prevalence of allergies.
August 13, 2015 at 9:11 pm

TAKEAWAY: "GM foods and the herbicides applied to them" are a package deal. Important overview articles will address open questions on both food allergy and cancer risks.
Posted by proverbialwisdom | Wed Mar 9, 2016, 03:33 PM (1 replies)

Top experts (Herbert, Mumper) recommend "a whole food diet that is as organic as possible."

True, neither mentions GMOs but the practical result would be unchanged if they did. And instead of fixating on "cause" how about framing the focus to be "helps vs harms" recovery/overall health. Mischaracterize and mock less, problem solve more.


GENETIC EXPLANATIONS: Sense and Nonsense: http://www.hup.harvard.edu/catalog.php?isbn=9780674064461

Headers from Dr. Herbert’s chapter in new Harvard U Press book

Here is the citation for my new chapter:
Herbert, M.R., Autism: From Static Genetic Brain Defect to Dynamic Gene-Environment-Modulated Pathophysiology.
Chapter 10 of Genetic Explanations: Sense and Nonsense.
Krimsky, S. and Gruber, J. eds, Harvard University Press (2012).

The chapter covers similar material to what is in the book THE AUTISM REVOLUTION, but pitched to upper-division undergraduate college students. Here are the chapter’s Section Headers. Please get the book to read more.

Posted by proverbialwisdom | Mon Mar 7, 2016, 09:19 PM (0 replies)

True. However, enough is unknown currently to justify caution, IMO. You may decide differently.(nt)

Posted by proverbialwisdom | Mon Mar 7, 2016, 08:28 PM (0 replies)

Study suggests potential association between "soy formula" & seizures in children w autism (3/13/14)

1) DEVELOPING... This research is preliminary, of course. Watch for the follow-up.

http://www.democraticunderground.com/10025195414#post75 (caveats)

2) Shocking independent statistic, as posted at the Seattle Children's Hospital website:


Epilepsy in Children

Epilepsy happens more in children than it does in adults. It affects about 1% of the general population - one out of every 100 people. About 5% of children younger than 5 years old have epilepsy. That is about one in every 20 children under 5.

This number does not include children who have seizures caused by a high fever. These kinds of seizures are different from epilepsy. They are called febrile seizures. They either happen only once or only when your child has a fever.


Posted by proverbialwisdom | Mon Mar 7, 2016, 06:12 PM (1 replies)

Here's how retiring NVICP Special Master Denise K. Vowell stated it in Wright v HHS - 9/21/15 (ii).


Posted by proverbialwisdom | Mon Mar 7, 2016, 12:50 PM (1 replies)
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