They were so focused on building their shelter they didn’t even care that a man with a camera was only a few feet away filming the entire thing. You have to see what the beaver does at 1:50. I had no clue they could walk like that… especially with so much wood in their mouth! Want to remind someone that it’s time to scratch something off that “honey-do” list? Just SHARE this video and mention how impressed you are… maybe they’ll get the hint!
How to Cut Tomatoes Like a Ninja - Cooking Hack (by DaveHax)
You’ve Been Cutting Tomatoes Wrong, But This Hack Shows You To Cut Them Like A Ninja (VIDEO)
Cutting cherry tomatoes can be a messy undertaking with squirting juice and goo getting everywhere — but it doesn’t have to be that way.
This simple cooking hack will teach you a method to cut cherry tomatoes so obvious, it’ll have you do a face palm.
To find out the trick, watch the video above!
Risky Business: Big Food Companies, Lawsuits and GMO Labeling
Food companies using GMOs or genetically engineered ingredients in their products might want to think again.
Attorneys are now saying, “If you’re using GMOs and making “all-natural” claims, there’s a good chance you’ll get sued.”
Why? Consumers are concerned.
A global market research company conducted a random, national telephone survey of over 1,000 Americans, asking how they felt about these ingredients in their products and if they had concern. Their top question: Do GMOs cause cancer?
The answer? We just don’t know. The industry will say there is no evidence of harm, and to a certain extent they are right. There is no evidence. The FDA does not require mandatory premarket safety testing of these products and no long term human health studies have been conducted.
So not surprisingly, with the escalating rates of cancer, autism, Alzheimer’s and other conditions hammering on our families, consumers are beginning to opt out. They are exercising precaution they way eaters around the world have been doing.
And when they find out that these GMOs are still hiding in products that they thought were clean, they are suing food companies.
Lawsuits are piling up on this changing landscape of food, and attorneys are getting busy.
Not only has Naked Juice and Kashi cereal felt the heat, but a class action lawsuit against General Mills on their all-natural claims and GMOs can proceed, a judge has declared.
General Mills had argued to dismiss or stay the lawsuit since the FDA has never defined the term “natural,” but the judge suggests that it’s plausible that a reasonable consumer could be misled.
As lawsuits against the food industry for misleading claims continue, the National Law Review recently published an article about a national survey that identifies top consumer questions and concerns when it comes to using genetically engineered ingredients in food and potential legal opportunities on the horizon.
According to the site:
A global market research company conducted a random, national telephone survey of over 1,000 Americans, in which those surveyed were given a list of 23 questions, then asked: “The following are questions some people have asked about GMOs. Which of the following questions around the use of GMOs would you be most interested in having answered?“
The top 10 questions are:
1. If GMOs cause cancer
2. If GMOs are causing an increase in allergies
3. If big companies are forcing farmers to grow GMOs
4. If GMOs are increasing the price of food
5. If GMOs are contaminating organic food crops
6. Why long-term health studies aren’t conducted on GMO plants
7. If GMOs are causing an increase in the use of pesticides
8. Why GMO companies seem like they are so against labeling GMO foods
9. If GMOs are contributing to the death of bees and butterflies
10. If livestock eat genetically modified grain, will there be GMOs in my meat
It’s a wide open landscape for attorneys. So what’s a company to do? The fiduciary duty of the executives inside the food companies still using these ingredients is to protect shareholder returns.
According to attorney Jordan Grotzinger:
“What’s the takeway for companies selling products with GMOs? Pay attention to consumers’ questions. They’re your customers. They’re also your potential adversaries in litigation, if you don’t disclose arguably material facts. If appropriate, consider addressing issues about which your customers might be concerned in your advertising or labeling. Lawsuits over “all natural” products or products containing GMOs usually involve claims of deception, that the consumer didn’t know this or that about the product. You can get in front of this risk and minimize the chances that someone can accuse you of misleading them by disclosing facts about which they’re curious.”
Given the legal climate, you’d think U.S. companies would dump GMOs and replace them with non genetically engineered ingredients. It’s not like they’re reinventing the wheel here. It’s the way they formulate their products in other countries and it is also the way they formulated their products fifteen years ago, prior to the introduction of GMOs in the 1990s.
The question now, in light of this legal landscape and the risk that using unlabeled GMOs presents to their shareholders, is: At what point is it the fiduciary responsibility of the food companies to avoid this legal liability, dump GMOs and formulate their products without them?
The time, in light of the escalating rates of diseases we are seeing in the health of our loved ones, just might be now.
Fracking (by Grant MacLaren)
He May Not Tell The Best Celebrity Jokes, But This Comedian’s Spot-On With His Seriously Scary Rant
In case you had any doubt about whether fracking for gas is dangerous, David Letterman’s going to clear things up a bit for you. I know he usually just tells questionably funny jokes about celebrities, but this rant of his definitely worth a watch.
A new scientific study from Princeton researchers Martin Gilens and Benjamin I. Page has finally put some science behind the recently popular argument that the United States isn’t a democracy any more. And they’ve found that in fact, America is basically an oligarchy.
"Happy" Makes Pharrell Williams Cry (by 202A Entertainment)
Tears of “Happy”-ness! Pharrell Williams was overcome with emotion during his heart-to-heart with Oprah Winfrey on the Sunday, April 13, episode of Oprah Prime. Chatting with Winfrey about the trajectory of his life and career to this point, the 41-year-old singer started crying as he described the incredible worldwide success of his smash, Oscar-nominated hit “Happy.”
"[We had] zero airplay. Nothing. And the next thing you know, we put out the video on November 21, and all of a sudden…boom," Williams said of the song’s meteoric rise to the top of the charts. "I mean, when I say boom, I mean boooom. And we were like, ‘What’s happening?’ First of all, people are putting up their own videos. It was, like, no longer my song."
To illustrate that point, Winfrey played a highlight reel of fan videos from around the globe, in places ranging from Iceland to Malawi. When it finished, Williams was in tears, barely able to speak. “It’s overwhelming, because I love what I do,” he said.
The Grammy-winning star later tweeted about the moment of raw vulnerability in an exchange with Winfrey. “This was one of the most sincere humbling moments I’ve ever experienced during an interview. HAPPY tears,” the media mogul wrote on April 13. “Couldn’t you feel his heart @Pharrell? So humble and appreciative of his journey. Loved him!”
"Wow…@Oprah, I am speechless," he replied. "All of your kind words are overwhelming…You can’t imagine what this means coming from you, a rare force. So radiant."
In 2008, Kevin James (the pundit, not the actor) lived the nightmare of every single one of us who has ever appeared on air: He was humiliated on national television by the host of the show on which he was appearing. James, who is white, was there to defend allegations that then-presidential candidate Barack Obama was like those who had “appeased” the Nazis.
Only when James was pressed by MSNBC host Chris Matthews to actually explain what that meant did it become painfully clear to everyone that he didn’t know. (You can watch it here.) Yet despite the clip going viral (so much so that the subject now dominates James’ Wikipedia page), and despite being widely considered one of the most embarrassing pundit implosions in cable TV history, nowhere have I read that James embarrassed his race.
But the moment I saw the television clip of Indiana University freshman Julian Batts making a gaffe that would result in headlines calling him the worst Wheel of Fortune contestant ever, I knew there would be claims that he had embarrassed the black race. I was right. On Gawker, among other sites, debates broke out about references that Batts had made all of us (“us” meaning black people) look bad.
This led one commenter to reply: “People make mistakes. People are dumb. This guy is one of them. One guy speaks for our race if you let him or are that insecure about being black. That must really suck,” the commenter said before concluding for good measure: “Don’t worry about it … we still got Neil D ;),” apparently referring to African-American genius Neil deGrasse Tyson.
But another commenter highlighted just why so many minorities worry other minorities, particularly those who fail, represent and ultimately hurt the rest of us. This commenter posited, “Maybe he’s an athlete? Or maybe this state school has lower standards for black applicants so they will be able to admit enough to avoid discrimination lawsuits?”
The fact that this commenter immediately assumed that the Wheel of Fortune contestant’s poor pronunciation skills were proof that he must be coasting through life thanks to racial preferences is infuriating. After all, if pronunciation were a sign of benefiting from racial preferences, then former President George W. Bush must have as well. But, of course, rarely do people make sweeping racial generalizations about performance when the person is white and male. This is likely at least part of the reason you wouldn’t read about white Americans saying, “That pundit Kevin James sure made us all look bad,” or “Gee, President Bush was so inarticulate, as a white person it’s so embarrassing.”
The reality is that no matter how many black presidents we have, how many Oprah Winfreys we have, how many Neil deGrasse Tysons we have, there will always be someone who dismisses black Americans by our worst stereotypes as opposed to judging us by our greatest realities. We can’t control that. But we can control whether we internalize this and ultimately perpetuate it as self-hatred in our own words and behaviors. Because although it is true that prominent voices can occasionally cast a shadow over any group, every time a child of color hears one of us buy into the idea that one black person who fails represents all of us, what message does that send?
So instead of lamenting the race of this Wheel of Fortune contestant, or any other black person we think hasn’t lived up to some invisible standard, and making the usual lament, “Why did he have to be black?,” here’s another suggestion for how we might cope. Next time another Wheel of Fortune-type pronunciation meltdown occurs, how about we simply say, “That was unfortunate. I guess he’s not destined to be Alexandre Dumas, one of the greatest classical writers ever, or the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., one of the greatest speakers ever, both of whom happen to be black.”
A former leader of the Ku Klux Klan who founded his own militant racist group was arrested for shooting and killing three people at two Kansas City-area Jewish community centers on April 13. When he founded the White Patriot Party in 1980, Frazier Glenn Miller said its goal was “the creation of an all-white nation within the 1 million square miles of mother Dixie” ("White Patriot Party," Terrorism Knowledge Base).
In 1986, Miller declared “total war” on Jews, blacks and the federal government (Intelligence Report, Winter/04). He served three years in prison on weapons charges and for running a paramilitary organization in violation of a court order (Hatewatch, 4/13/14) . He shouted “Heil Hitler” after being taken into custody after the Kansas City attacks (New York Times, 4/14/14).
But media are reluctant to label the shootings Miller is charged with as acts of terrorism, or even to raise the issue.
According to a search of the Nexis database, the word “terrorism” does not appear to have been used in connection with the Kansas shootings in the New York Times or the Washington Post. On much of the network news coverage, the killings were mostly discussed as hate crimes. NBC Nightly News anchor Brian Williams (4/14/14) called it “a terrible outburst of violence.”
It would be difficult to see how the crimes Miller is accused of committing would not meet the conventional legal standard (FBI,gov, “Definitions of Terrorism in the U.S. Code”). But calling something an act of terrorism is not just a legal or law enforcement matter; it is also a political determination.
A year ago, the bombings at the Boston Marathon were immediately discussed as an act of terror, before any suspects were announced and any motives were understood (FAIR Blog, 4/16/13). The fact that early assumptions linked the act to Muslims might explain that media decision.
And there is a media pattern of downplaying acts of right-wing domestic terrorism. In 2011, Extra! (5/11) compared the effusive coverage afforded an amateur bomb set by a Muslim perpetrator in New York City’s Times Square to the sparse coverage of a much more sophisticated explosive device planted by a white supremacist at a Martin Luther King Day parade in Spokane, Wash. (Miller offered to set up a legal defense fund for Kevin Harpham, the far-right activist convicted in that bombing attempt—Talking Points Memo, 1/27/12.) There is also a long history of anti-abortion terrorism not being labeled as such (FAIR Blog, 2/1/10).
There were some exceptions in the media coverage. Interviewing Heidi Beirich of the Southern Poverty Law Center, CNN host Jake Tapper (4/14/14) asked: ” I just wonder, if he had shouted ‘Allahu Akbar’ instead of ‘Heil Hitler,’ would be now facing terrorism charges instead of just hate crime charges?”
And the issue came up on the PBS NewsHour (4/14/14) when host Gwen Ifill interviewed Mark Potok of the Southern Poverty Law Center, asking him, “At what point do we begin to treat these kinds of attacks as domestic terrorism, not just as hate crimes or individual acts?” Potok replied:
They are domestic terrorism. Let’s be plain.
There is nothing to distinguish this from other forms of terrorism. It is a way in this case of terrorizing the Jewish community around Kansas City in particular, but around the country in general. And that’s what terrorism is. It’s a criminal act that is aimed at far more people than the immediate victims.
You know, the law enforcement has been off and on about being candid about the terrorist nature of these attacks. But I think, today, by and large, American law enforcement is perfectly well aware that there is a very serious domestic radical right and some people within that milieu are, in fact, terrorists.
Media can argue that they are simply following the lead of law enforcement officials, who are evidently calling the act a hate crime. But for journalists, the decision to avoid discussing this kind of violence in the context of terrorism is a political one.
The Spice That Prevents Fluoride From Destroying Your Brain
Fluoride is found everywhere today, from antibiotics to drinking water, no stick pans to toothpaste, making exposure inevitable. All the more reason why new research proving this common spice can prevent fluoride damage is so promising!
Fluoride’s neurotoxicity has been the subject of academic debate for decades, and now a matter of increasingly impassioned controversy among the general public, as well. From ‘conspiracy theories’ about it being first used in drinking water in Russian and Nazi concentration camps to chemically lobotomize captives, to its now well-known IQ lowering properties, to its ability to enhance the calcification of the pineal gland – the traditional ‘seat of the soul’ – many around the world, and increasingly in the heavily fluoridated regions of the United States, are starting to organize at the local and statewide level to oust this ubiquitous toxicant from municipal drinking water.
Now, a new study published in the Pharmacognosy Magazine titled, “Curcumin attenuates neurotoxicity induced by fluoride: An in vivo evidence,” adds experimental support to the suspicion that fluoride is indeed a brain-damaging substance, also revealing that a natural spice-derived protective agent against the various health effects associated with this compound is available.
The study was authored by researchers from the Department of Zoology, University College of Science, M.L. Sukhadia University, Udaipur, India, who have spent the past decade investigating the mechanisms through which fluoride induces severe neurodegenerative changes in the mammalian brain, particularly in cells of the hippocampus and cerebral cortex.[i] [ii]
The study opens by describing the historical backdrop for concern about fluoride’s significant and wide ranging toxicity:
"Fluoride (F) is probably the first inorganic ion which drew attention of the scientific world for its toxic effects and now the F toxicity through drinking water is well-recognized as a global problem. Health effect reports on F exposure also include various cancers, adverse reproductive activities, cardiovascular, and neurological diseases.[1,2]”
The study focused on fluoride induced neurotoxicity, identifying excitoxicity (stimulation of the neuron to the point of death) and oxidative stress as the two main drivers of neurodegeneration. It has been observed that subjects with the condition known as fluorosis, a mottling of tooth enamel caused by excessive exposure to fluoride during tooth development, also have neurodegenerative changes associated with a form of oxidative stress known as lipid peroxidation (rancidity). Excess lipid peroxidation in the brain can lead to a decrease in total brain phospholipid content. Owing to these well-known mechanisms of fluoride associated neurotoxicity and neurodegeneration, the researchers identified the primary polyphenol in the spice turmeric — known as curcumin – as an ideal agent worth testing as a neuroprotective substance. Previous research on curcumin indicates that it is capable of activing as an antioxidant in 3 distinct ways by protecting against: 1) singlet oxygen 2) hyrodxyl radicals and 3) superoxide radical damage. Also, curcumin appears to raise endogenous glutathione production in the brain, a major antioxidant defense system.
Roundup Herbicide 125 Times More Toxic Than Regulators Say
A highly concerning new study published in the journal Biomedical Research International reveals that despite the still relatively benign reputation of agrochemicals such as Roundup herbicide, many chemical formulations upon which the modern agricultural system depend are far more toxic than present regulatory tests performed on them reveal. Roundup herbicide, for instance, was found to be 125 times more toxic than its active ingredient glyphosate studied in isolation.
Titled, “Major pesticides are more toxic to human cells than their declared active principles,” the study evaluated to what extent the active principle (AP) and the so-called ‘inert ingredients,’ i.e. adjuvants, in globally popular formulations account for the toxicity of 9 major pesticides: 3 herbicides, 3 insecticides, and 3 fungicides.
The Deceptive Semantics of Pesticide Formulations And Their Regulation
The paper describes how the agrochemical industry conceals the true toxicity of their chemical formulations by focusing on the health risks associated with only one so-called ‘active principle’ (AP) in their complex formulations, and sets the public up for mass poisoning through the determination of an ‘acceptable level of harm’ via the calculation of the so-called ‘acceptable daily intake (ADI)’ based on the toxicological risk profile of only a single ingredient:
"Pesticides are used throughout the world as mixtures called formulations. They contain adjuvants, which are often kept confidential and are called inerts by the manufacturing companies, plus a declared active principle (AP), which is the only one tested in the longest toxicological regulatory tests performed on mammals. This allows the calculation of the acceptable daily intake (ADI)—the level of exposure that is claimed to be safe for humans over the long term—and justifies the presence of residues of these pesticides at "admissible" levels in the environment and organisms. Only the AP and one metabolite are used as markers, but this does not exclude the presence of adjuvants, which are cell penetrants."
The problem of underestimated toxicological risk is so severe that the researchers describe previous research which found unexpected toxicity in so-called ‘inert’ adjuvants that were up to 10,000 times more toxic than the so-called active principle glyphosate itself, revealing them to be a greater source for secondary side effects than the main ingredient itself. [i] They also note that this ‘synergistic toxicity’ may explain the results of previous long-term animal research where glyphosate-based formulations showed toxicity in the parts-per-trillion range (.1 part per billion) that could not be explained by glyphosate alone.[ii] [iii]
Dr. Kelly Brogan, MD, commented on this phenomena in connection with the study recently on her blog: “Similar to the non-placebo-controlled trials on vaccines, adjuvants and preservatives are considered innocent bystanders in the consideration of risk profile.” According to Dr. Brogan, an understanding of “Toxicant synergy has exploded the simplistic notion of “the dose makes the poison.”“
The Test Method and Results
In order to ascertain the toxicity of various chemical formulations and their ingredients, the researchers used embryonic (HEK293), placental (JEG3), and hepatic (HepG2) human cell lines, “because they are well characterized and validated as useful models to test toxicities of pesticides, corresponding to what is observed on fresh tissue or primary cells.” They noted, “these cells lines are even in some instances less sensitive than primary cells, and therefore do not overestimate cellular toxicity.”
The researchers describe the their method of determining toxicity:
We assayed their mitochondrial succinate dehydrogenase (SD) activity (MTT assay) after 24h pesticide exposure, which is one of the most accurate cytotoxicity assays for measuring the toxicity of pesticide adjuvants such as surfactants . Cytotoxicity was confirmed by the measurement of apoptosis and necrosis, respectively, by caspases 3/7 activation  and adenylate kinase leakage after membrane alterations 
The results of the study were clear. Except for one pesticide (Matin), “All formulations were cytotoxic and far more toxic than their APs [active principles].”
Key findings included:
- On human cells, among the tested products, fungicides were the most toxic (Figure 1), being cytotoxic from doses 300–600 times lower than agricultural dilutions, followed by herbicides (except Matin) and then insecticides.
- In all cell types, fungicides were the most toxic (mean LC50 12ppm).
- The herbicide Roundup (LC50 63ppm) was next in toxicity to fungicides, twice as toxic as Starane, and more than 10 times as toxic as the 3 insecticides, which represent the less toxic group (mean LC50 720ppm).
The researchers noted that theirs was the first study to test all these formulated pesticides on human cells at concentrations well below agricultural dilutions – indicating the relevance of their results to every day human exposures.
The researchers noted that in the present study, the cells were exposed to the chemicals for no longer than 48 hours, but in previous research they observed increased toxicity with time (i.e. “time-amplifying effect”), such that, “the differential toxicity between the AP [active principle] glyphosate and Roundup is increased by 5 times in 72h.” In accordance with this phenomena, they provide the example:
BAMBOO DRINKING STRAWS
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Something You Still Won’t See on MSNBC
A liberal-leaning Democrat is waging a somewhat lonely but passionate fight against a mega-corporate merger. That’s the kind of thing you’re going to see talked about on the liberal-leaning cable channel MSNBC, right?
Not at the moment. Because that politician, Minnesota Sen. Al Franken, is talking about the Comcast/Time Warner Cable merger (New York Times, 4/11/14). And, of course, Comcast is MSNBC's parent company.
As we’ve noted before (FAIR Blog, 2/19/14), MSNBC mostly skipped the announcement of the merger. The only substantive coverage was on Morning Joe, where the CEOs enjoyed a victory lap. As co-host Joe Scarborough put it, “Comcast seems to be doing everything right over the past four or five years.”
Not much has changed. Franken’s questioning of company officials at a Senate judiciary committee hearing last week (4/9/14) drew notice from the likes of the New York Times (4/11/14), but it doesn’t seem to change the dynamic over at Comcast's cable channel, which has a political point of view that you might think would be sympathetic to Franken's criticism–not to mention the dozens of public interest groups that have spoken out publicly against the deal.
Interestingly, CNN–which no longer has any corporate ties to Time Warner Cable–has done much more on the Comcast story, most recently on the media program Reliable Sources (4/13/14), which had also featured an interview with Craig Aaron of Free Press on the same subject (2/16/14).
But at this point, a merger of two massive media companies–which raises some fundamental questions about one corporation holding enormous power over cable, broadband and programming–isn’t generating any interest over at MSNBC. If Franken and other Comcast critics need any more evidence showing how these media giants wield their power, they don’t have to look very far.
The most amazing beaver experience. (by john cena)
UNREAL! A Reporter Was Trying To Record A Beaver, But He NEVER Expected What He Saw! Must See!
You know the saying “Busy as a Beaver?” This is where it comes from. Where I grew up, we saw a lot of beaver dams, but I’ve never seen one being built!