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Posts Tagged ‘Dinosaur’

In a surprising twist on common sense, the NY Times reports that the British Food Standards Agency just released a study finding that children with diets rich in food additives such as artificial colors and sodium benzoate are more likely to be diagnosed with ADD than other children.

 Is this seriously a surprise? And is this seriously a study where it’s even possible to iscolate a cause like that? What about exposure to commercials? Or time spent not exercising? Or whatever one of a million things that make kids today less able to pay attention, less able to stay healthy, and less able to retain information than they used to be, back in the day.

But apparently not everyone agrees that this is common sense.  Though the research stated…

“A mix of additives commonly found in children’s foods increases the mean level of hyperactivity… The finding lends strong support for the case that food additives exacerbate hyperactive behaviors (inattention, impulsivity and overactivity) at least into middle childhood.”

Some pediatricians (that’s right, doctors!) are arguing with the significance of the study.

“Even if it shows some increase in hyperactivity, is it clinically significant and does it impact the child’s life?” said Dr. Thomas Spencer, a specialist in Pediatric Psychopharmacology at Massachusetts General Hospital.

How does having attention defecit disorder NOT impact a child’s life? Has this guy met a child, ever? Who was the kid in your elementary school whose underwear SOMEHOW ended up in the middle of the room after recess, who SOMEHOW couldn’t keep his mouth shut and didn’t have any friends because he was such a freak, who SOMEHOW couldn’t stop cutting tiny holes into his ill-fitting sweatpants. Because in my school, it was the kid with severe ADD.

AND, don’t encourage the kids to avoid these processed and packaged foods (which obviously, besides their ADD-causing additives, are usually the healthiest food available, much better than fresh fruits and vegetables or whole grains) because it might make them freaks! And better to follow the crowd to disorders than to buck the trend and preserve your ability to sit in a seat for more than 10 minutes!

… some pediatricians cautioned that a diet without artificial colors and preservatives might cause other problems for children. Dr. Spencer [this guy is clearly a winner] asks, “Is it powerful enough that you want to ostracize your kid? It is very socially impacting if children can’t eat the things that their friends do.”

As Dr. Spencer was giving this interview, he was actually getting massaged by a big-boobed lady wearing nothing but 2 frito-lay bags and a coke bottle covering her privates. Who the shit is this guy working for? The next paragraph notes that he conceded that some children may be “super sensitive” to additives.

A few hundred 3 year olds and 8-9 year olds were given drinks with additives mimicking what’s in commercial drinks, equalling about the equivalent of 1 or 2 servings of candy a day. Another group was given placebos. Over a 6 week period all the kids were evaluated by teachers, parents, and a computer, and (duh!!!)…

…The researchers discovered that children in both age groups were significantly more hyperactive and that they had shorter attention spans if they had consumed the drink containing the additives. The study’s authors noted that other research suggested that the hyperactivity could increase in as little as an hour after artificial additives were consumed.

Fucking DUH! How is this even real??? The follow-up study to this will be, “children denied processed foods for 6 weeks perform better in school, wet the bed less, don’t develop childhood obesity or diabetes.”

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Remember Scooter Libby? He was the one who got convicted of perjury and obstructing justice. That whole Valerie Plame thing. Her husband was an ambassador who said that the administration was lying about Iraq buying uranium in Africa (back before we shock and awed them – remember that shit?). The administration got pissed and so they told Robert Novak, this conservative columnist to write a column “outting” Valerie Plame as the CIA agent that she so was. Turning against “their own.” Or whatever. Clearly issues exist between the exec’s and the CIA type of people, but to me they’re all government people doing sneaky stuff.

Anyway, that was a long time ago. And Scooter Libby was the chief of staff for Dick Cheney. And he was the one who took the fall for all of it. I don’t say that to mean that he wasn’t guilty, but just that he obviously wasn’t the only guilty one.

So he got sentenced to 30 months in prison and $250,000. But, I guess Bush agreed with this guy:

“This is not a man who deserves to go to jail in any sense of the word,” said Kenneth L. Adelman, a former Defense Department official and longtime friend of Mr. Libby, who stayed at his Colorado vacation home before his trial.

“Whatever he did wrong, he certainly paid,” Mr. Adelman said, referring to Mr. Libby’s resignation from his prominent position and his public humiliation. “This is a good person who served his country very well and is a decent person,” he said.

Bush commuted his sentence – meaning that he doesn’t have to serve any jail time. Huh.

Me? I aree with this guy:

Senator Harry Reid of Nevada, the majority leader, called the commutation “disgraceful.”

“Libby’s conviction was the one faint glimmer of accountability for White House efforts to manipulate intelligence and silence critics of the Iraq War,” Mr. Reid said. “Now, even that small bit of justice has been undone.”

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Once upon a time I owned two Rufus Wainwright CDs. For some reason I thought that I enjoyed his music. I was sorely mistaken. After listening to 7+ tracks in a row of his self titled album, “Rufus Wainwright,” I realized if I wanted to hear to a nasally voice I would tune into a rerun of “Family Matters,” not listen to a collection of 13 serious songs. (This is just my opinion. Please don’t stone me.)

In any case, I’d like to share with you a couple quotes from his recent interview with SPIN magazine. You can make the comparisons between Wainwright and Narcissus yourself. Enjoy.

Spin: Are you sick of cult success?

Rufus Wainwright: I wouldn’t say that I’m sick of it. I go to the opera three times a week, I hang around in my bathrobe reading Susan Sontag, and I get foot massages from my German boyfriend – I’m going to be fine. That being said, I want to be part of culture. I’m scared of what young people are being force-fed. I’m sick of trash culture.

(Me: That response just made me [theoretically] vomit up my lunch. And really, three operas a week? Not since the Renaissance has anyone attended 2+ operas in a seven day period.)

Spin: Anything specifically?

Rufus Wainwright: I’m really sick of Beyonce. All of her songs are formulaic and produced in a way that’s utterly mesmerizing in the basest way. There’s no enlightenment. Like most pop these days, it’s more of a scientific experiment than an artistic experience. But hey, it’s your life, you know?

(Me: Despite the fact that Rufus Wainwright considers himself to be a reincarnate of Christ, I’ve never found Wainwright’s music to be particularly enlightening. Therefore, I don’t think he should be criticizing the work of Ms. Beyonce Knowles. Beyonce who gave us greats like “Baby Boy” and “Crazy in Love.” And let us not forget the time she warned us about not being ready for her jelly in “Bootylicious.” Which I appreciate. She cares about us, the fans. That shows character. Wainwright on the other hand probably hates most of the people who listen to his music. I will share with you an example that backs up this theory: I once heard a story involving Wainwright, Vassar College, and an “uber hipster” crowd. In this tale, after playing his show, Wainwright chose to pay attention only to those in tight jeans, greased hair, and baby tees, aka, the “ubers,” and ignored the rest of his fans. This is not surprising. I’m sure he and his newfound friends probably had discussions about feminism and Susan Sontag, and then immediately after stared at their reflections for three consecutive hours.

Now, I’m not saying my musical talents surpass those of Wainwright’s, though, I was first clarinet in junior high. But I do think Wainwright is one of the most ridiculous human beings in the music industry. If you ask me, I think he should spend less time thinking he is a god among men, and more time on writing some life-altering music. And in the end, are songs “produced in a way that’s utterly mesmerizing in the basest way” that bad? I’m sure if you look in Wainwright’s CD selection, you will find at least a few (bad) pop albums. But he will most likely tell you he only likes those artists in an ironic sense. They always do.)

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What do you call a dinosaur with wings that can’t fly? Um… a dragon, as far as I’m concerned!

Scientists call it a Gigantoraptor (really, that’s what it’s called) and…

Gigantoraptor appears in an artist’s reconstruction to have cut a menacing figure on the Cretaceous landscape. Rearing on its hind limbs, it spread out forelimbs tipped with sharp claws and prepared to pounce on prey with an open mouth and strong beak. Independent dinosaur experts said the description of the fossils of the half-complete skeleton appeared to support the discoverers’ interpretations. They said Gigantoraptor probably had some feathers, though none were preserved.

Ha!

gigantoraptor

Artists’ rendering of actual events. No really. This is the picture the scientists released with their findings.

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