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TBR News February 4, 2020

Feb 04 2020

The Voice of the White House
Washington, D.C. February 4, 2020:“Working in the White House as a junior staffer is an interesting experience.
When I was younger, I worked as a summer-time job in a clinic for people who had moderate to severe mental problems and the current work closely, at times, echos the earlier one.
I am not an intimate of the President but I have encountered him from time to time and I daily see manifestations of his growing psychological problems.
He insults people, uses foul language, is frantic to see his name mentioned on main-line television and pays absolutely no attention to any advice from his staff that runs counter to his strange ideas.
He lies like a rug to everyone, eats like a hog, makes lewd remarks to female staffers and flies into rages if anyone dares to contradict him.
It is becoming more and more evident to even the least intelligent American voter that Trump is vicious, corrupt and amoral. He has stated often that even if he loses the
election in 2020, he will not leave the White House. I have news for Donald but this is not the place to discuss it.

Trump aches from his head to his toes
His sphincters have gone where who knows
And his love life has ended
By a paunch so distended
That all he can use is his nose

Commentary for February 4’ “In reading the scare headlines in the world’s media, I haven’t laughed so hard since my aunt fell into the septic tank. I am referring to the fictional “plague” the press advises us is about to depopulate the world.
• Three die in Hong Kong!
• Possible plague in New Jersey!
• WHO terrified!
• Trump promises aid only to white countries!
• Two sick of coronavirus in Portugal!
• Can the Pope save us?
• Wave of fear engufs Nigeria!
Next week a Chinese civil transport plane will crash in Outer Mongolia and then the media will enlighten the masses with:
• Did Russia cause plane accident?
• Plane pilot might have had coronavirus!
• The result of vaccinating pilots!
• Did Tesla Death Ray bring down plane?
And God alone knows what we will see on YouTube. Humanized bats, wearing red Trump hats, armed with weenie forks attacking a plastic plane kit no doubt. Anyway, we all know Jesus is Coming Back Next Week (in Dallas for certain!)”

The Table of Contents
Fear fueled by speculation & doomsday scenarios over coronavirus spread poses greater threat to global economy than the epidemic
• Sea level rise could reshape the United States, trigger migration inland
• Russia’s Gazprom Says It Will Complete Nord Stream 2 Alone
• The Pentagon’s and CIA’s Power to Assassinate Americans
• Federal Judge Reverses Conviction of Border Volunteers, Challenging Government’s “Gruesome Logic”
• Martin Luther King
• Another hidden cost of the fattening of America.
• The Season of Evil
• The Encyclopedia of American Loons

Fear fueled by speculation & doomsday scenarios over coronavirus spread poses greater threat to global economy than the epidemic
February 3, 2020
by Norman Lewis
RT
The impact of the coronavirus outbreak on the global economy is potentially great but the good news is that this danger is containable if we recognize that fear itself has become a significant economic factor.
The report of the first death from the coronavirus outside China (in the Philippines) has intensified fears that we are on the verge of a pandemic which could cause a global economic recession. Financial markets have been rattled. Speculative predictions of worst-case scenarios suggest a world GDP negative impact of possibly 1.8 percent to 6 percent.
With speculation and doomsday scenarios being fueled by every new announcement of deaths or new outbreaks, it is important to distinguish what we can be sure of, and what is mere conjecture or exaggeration. This will allow us to maintain a grip on reality. For if there is one thing that this crisis has brought to the fore, it is how fear can become an economic force in itself, which can drive an irrational rather than a measured approach to mitigating the risks we face.
What we can be sure of
With an official lockdown affecting more than 50 million people, consumer spending on restaurants, hotels and entertainment venues in China has plunged. But compared to the 2002/2003 SARS outbreak, the global economic effects of the coronavirus are likely to be more severe still. Simply put, China is much bigger and more intertwined with the global economy. And it is also more vulnerable than it was 17 years ago.
In 2003, China represented only about 7.5 percent of world GDP. Today, it represents more than 20 percent. Since the global financial crisis of 2007-09, China has been the engine of global growth. It now forms a much greater part of the world economy, accounting in 2018 for 27 percent of global manufacturing. Any negative and short-term economic impact on China is likely to have more global consequences that it would have had in 2003.
For example, China’s international air traffic was only about six million people in 2000, while it was almost 661 million people in 2018; Chinese tourism accounts for a large part of tourism regionally: 30 percent in Thailand and 15 percent in Australia.
China has also become a major part of global value chains, accounting for about 80 percent of raw pharmaceutical ingredients sold to manufacturers, for example. Hubei Province together with nearby Shanghai account for about 12 percent of China’s car and truck output. Delaying the operations of Honda, Toyota, Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi and Volkswagen to a five-day workweek, for example, would result in 150,000 lost units. The closure of outlets in China by big brands like McDonald’s, KFC, IKEA, Starbucks and Apple together with the cutting of flights by British Airways, Virgin Atlantic, American and United will have short-term impacts on China and these companies.
Enforced manufacturing closures will impact supply chains. Already Apple CEO Tim Cook has warned investors about possible negative impacts of supply chain interruptions for products that are sold in US stores and around the world.
China’s lockdown has already reduced commodity prices for palm oil and base metals, reducing demand and thus negatively impacting the economies of countries that rely on these exports. The price of Brent crude, the global benchmark oil price, had slipped to a five-month low, while the price of gold has risen to its highest level for almost seven years.
Finally, both China and the world economy are more vulnerable today. China has much higher debt and, together with the impact of the trade war with the US, its growth has been steadily slowing down for a number of years. It has a much weaker starting point to face such a crisis.
What we cannot be sure of
First, it is not possible to know what longer-term impacts any of these developments will have on global growth, trade and global value chains. While previous epidemics like SARS in 2003 registered very little impact globally – between 2001 and 2005, China’s GDP grew impressively from 8.3 percent to 11.4 percent – Beijing’s position in the global economy today means the impact could be higher, but by how much remains speculative.
A more important short-term question is how China’s heavily indebted non-financial corporations (especially in the manufacturing sector) will cope with periods of lockdown. The debt load of these companies has ballooned over the past 20 years to more than 150 percent of GDP. They rely on high economic growth to keep servicing this debt. If this high growth levels off, even for a relatively modest short period, such highly indebted companies could find it difficult to honor their obligations without massive government support. The Chinese central bank might be forced to pump liquidity into the system, although then it would also risk (possibly much) higher inflation. The longer-term impact of this is difficult to predict
The final big unknown, and which brings us back to the subjective question, is whether this uncertainty will foster an increased mood of caution in business and consumer confidence. Business commitments, investment and spending decisions could be postponed.
It is impossible to predict how today’s risk-averse businesses and governments will fashion a sustained response to the crisis. But what we can be fairly certain of is that the culture of fear across the West worryingly predisposes businesses and governments to imagined worst-case scenarios as inevitable, even despite past experiences.
This would not be a rational risk management strategy. The coronavirus does not have a predetermined path that cannot be changed by human intervention. Not only is an anti-virus being developed at unprecedented speed, but crises like these are not only a real threat – they contain economic opportunities for growth too.
Consumers might be forced to stay indoors and postpone holidays or the purchase of a new mattress. But consumer demand can be rephased over time. Staying at home means eating more from home, watching more online films, the purchase of boardgames, etc. Food and agriculture and retail can thrive as a result. Face-mask manufacturers, producers of detergents and anti-bacterial hand sprays, to name a few, will also thrive. Closed factories can rapidly recover from temporary disruptions, so value-added is less affected over a year. The race to develop an anti-virus will be a boom to the pharmaceutical industry.
In other words, if fear overwhelms society, it becomes a determining economic factor in itself. Locking down cities and factories is a rational initial response. It will hopefully help to contain the virus in the immediate term. But assuming a worst-case scenario as inevitable undermines the belief that we can influence outcomes, that we can contain and defeat this new threat. Roosevelt’s warning that the only thing we should fear is fear itself could not be more apposite today.
Dr Norman Lewis, writer, speaker and consultant on innovation and technology, was most recently a Director at PriceWaterhouseCoopers, where he set up and led their crowdsourced innovation service. Prior to this he was the Director of Technology Research at Orange.

Sea level rise could reshape the United States, trigger migration inland
AI shows climate change-driven sea-level rise could trigger mass migration to cities inland
Date:January 22, 2020
Source: University of Southern California
Summary:
A new study uses machine learning to project migration patterns resulting from sea-level rise. Researchers found the impact of rising oceans will ripple across the country, beyond coastal areas at risk of flooding, as affected people move inland. Popular relocation choices will include land-locked cities such as Atlanta, Houston, Dallas, Denver and Las Vegas. The model also predicts suburban and rural areas in the Midwest will experience disproportionately large influx of people relative to their smaller local populations.
When Hurricane Harvey slammed into the Texas coast in 2017, displaced residents flocked inland, trying to rebuild their lives in the disaster’s aftermath. Within decades, the same thing could happen at a much larger scale due to rising sea levels, says a new study led by USC Computer Science Assistant Professor Bistra Dilkina.
The study, published in PLOS ONE, Jan. 22, is the first to use machine learning to project migration patterns resulting from sea-level rise. The researchers found the impact of rising oceans will ripple across the country, beyond coastal areas at risk of flooding, as affected people move inland.
In the US alone, 13 million people could be forced to relocate due to rising sea levels by 2100. As a result, cities throughout the country will grapple with new populations. Effects could include more competition for jobs, increased housing prices, and more pressure on infrastructure networks.
“Sea level rise will affect every county in the US, including inland areas,” said Dilkina, the study’s corresponding author, a WiSE Gabilan Assistant Professor in computer science at USC and associate director of USC’s Center for AI for Society.
“We hope this research will empower urban planners and local decision-makers to prepare to accept populations displaced by sea-level rise. Our findings indicate that everybody should care about sea-level rise, whether they live on the coast or not. This is a global impact issue.”
According to the research team, most popular relocation choices will include land-locked cities such as Atlanta, Houston, Dallas, Denver and Las Vegas. The model also predicts suburban and rural areas in the Midwest will experience disproportionately large influx of people relative to their smaller local populations.
Predicting relocation areas
Sea-level rise is caused primarily by two factors related to global warming: added water from melting ice sheets and glaciers and the expansion of sea water as it warms. Within just a few decades, hundreds of thousands homes on the US coast will be flooded. In fact, by the end of the century, 6 feet of ocean-level rise would redraw the coastline of southern Florida, parts of North Carolina and Virginia and most of Boston and New Orleans.
To predict the trajectory of sea-level rise migration, the researchers took existing projections of rising sea levels and combined this with population projections. Based on migration patterns after Hurricane Katrina and Hurricane Rita, the team trained machine learning models — a subset of artificial intelligence — to predict where people would relocate.
“We talk about rising sea levels, but the effects go much further than those directly affected on the coasts,” said Caleb Robinson, a visiting doctoral researcher from Georgia Tech advised by Dilkina and the study’s first author. “We wanted to look not only at who would be displaced, but also where they would go.” Dilkina and Robinson worked with co-author Juan Moreno Cruz, an economist and professor at the University of Waterloo.
As expected, the researchers found the greatest effects of sea-level rise migration will be felt by inland areas immediately adjacent to the coast, as well as urban areas in the southeast US. But their model also showed more incoming migrants to Houston and Dallas than previous studies, which flagged Austin as the top destination for climate migrants from the southeastern coast.
This result, notes the researchers, shows that population movement under climate change will not necessarily follow previously established patterns. In other words: it is not business as usual.
Sea-level rise could also reroute people relocating from unaffected areas. Counties surrounding Los Angeles, in particular, could see tens of thousands of migrants whose preferred coastal destinations are now flooded choosing alternative destinations.
The results of this study could help city planners and policymakers plan to expand critical infrastructure, from roads to medical services, to ensure the influx of people has a positive impact on local economies and social well-being.
“When migration occurs naturally, it is a great engine for economic activity and growth,” said co-author Juan Moreno Cruz, an economist and professor at the University of Waterloo.
“But when migration is forced upon people, productivity falls and human and social capital are lost as communities are broken apart. Understanding these migration decisions helps economies and policy makers prepare for what is to come and do as much as possible to make the influx of migration a positive experience that generates positive outcomes.”

Russia’s Gazprom Says It Will Complete Nord Stream 2 Alone
January 29, 2020
Radio Free Europe
Russia’s state-owned Gazprom says it will complete the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline project under the Baltic Sea on its own without the help of foreign companies.
“The Nord Stream 2 project, which is already 94 percent complete, will be finished by the Russian side,” Gazprom deputy head Yelena Burmistrova reportedly told the European Gas Conference in Vienna on January 28.
Last month, the United States imposed sanctions in the form of a cease-and-desist order for the foreign firms working on the Russia-to-Germany natural-gas pipeline project.
That pushed back the timetable of its completion, with Russian officials having given various estimates of when it would go online — from the end of 2020 to early 2021.
It remains unclear how Gazprom would finish the project without international assistance. Options on the table, according to the Financial Times, include using vessels owned by Gazprom and other Russian pipe-laying contractors.
The foreign companies building the pipeline — all not part of Gazprom’s project consortium — were Finnish, Swedish, and Danish.
The two most crucial companies facing sanctions were Swiss pipelayer and undersea construction firm Allseas, as well as Italian pipeline contractor Saipem.
Upon completion and in addition to Gazprom’s sister Nord Stream 1 pipeline, Russia technically won’t be reliant on Ukraine’s pipeline network for transiting gas to Europe.
Both sides, however, in late December signed a five-year, $7 billion gas transmission agreement.
Under the new contract, Kyiv this year is expecting to ship a minimum of 65 billion cubic meters (bcm), or about 22 bcm less than it did in 2018. Minimum volumes will decrease further to 40 bcm in 2021-24.

The Pentagon’s and CIA’s Power to Assassinate Americans
January 14, 2020
by Jacob G. Hornberger
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Pentagon officials are assuring Americans that the Pentagon’s recent assassination of Iranian Major General Qasem Soleimani will make Americans safer. There is at least one big problem with that formulation, one that, unfortunately, many Americans still don’t recognize. That problem is this: the power of assassination wielded by the Pentagon and the CIA extends to American citizens.The Pentagon’s and CIA’s Power to Assassinate Americans
Why is that a problem?
Because there is no way to reconcile a government’s power to assassinate its own citizens with the principles of a free society. A free society necessarily is one in which the government lacks the power to assassinate its own citizens.
Our American ancestors clearly understood this aspect of a free society. That’s why they demanded the enactment of the Fifth Amendment as a condition for accepting the new limited-government republic that was being proposed by the Constitution. The Fifth Amendment reads in part: “No person shall be … deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law.” That phrase — due process of law, which stretches back to Magna Carta — has come to mean notice and trial, including trial by jury.
Americans had been operating under the Articles of Confederation for some 13 years when the delegates at the Constitutional Convention proposed a limited-government republic type of governmental system. Under the Articles, the federal government hadn’t even been given the power to tax, much less the power to assassinate American citizens. Americans were leery about the proposal for a limited-government republic because they feared that it might evolve into a government with totalitarian-like powers, such as the power to assassinate its own citizens.
Americans finally were persuaded to accept the deal but they demanded the enactment of the Bill of Rights to make sure that federal officials got the point. The Bill of Rights essentially says: “You don’t have the power to destroy our fundamental, God-given rights, and you also lack the power to kill us without following the principles of due process of law.”
The Framers did not bring into existence a government in which federal officials would be entrusted with the power of assassination. Instead, they made certain that the federal government was denied the power of assassination. They understood that freedom isn’t a government in which officials are exercising a power of assassination prudently, rarely, and wisely. They understood that freedom is a government in which officials don’t have the power to assassinate at all.
It is impossible to overstate the magnitude of the change that took place after World War II, when the federal government was converted from a limited-government republic to a national-security state form of governmental structure. A national-security state is a totalitarian form of governmental structure, one that wields totalitarian-like powers. North Korea is a national security state. So are China, Russia, Cuba, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, and Pakistan. And post-World War II United States.
The conversion of the federal government to a national-security state automatically brought into existence the power of the federal government to assassinate American citizens. At the moment of the conversion, the freedom of the American people was destroyed because, again, it is impossible to reconcile the totalitarian power of assassination with the principles of a free society.
It doesn’t matter how much Americans are convinced that they are a free people. It doesn’t matter how many times they thank the troops for defending their freedom. The fact remains: A people whose government wields the power to assassinate its own people are not a free people.
In North Korea, China, Russia, Cuba, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, and Pakistan, the governments wield the power to assassinate their own people. When they exercise such power, there is nothing anyone can do about. People cannot recover damages in court for wrongful death. There are no criminal prosecutions of the killers.
It’s no different here in the United States. The power to assassinate, which is reserved to the Pentagon and the CIA, two of the principal components of the national-security establishment (the other is the NSA), is omnipotent and non-reviewable, so long as the Pentagon and the CIA say that the assassination relates to “national security.” Once they utter those two words, there isn’t a court in the land, including the U.S. Supreme Court, that will interfere with the Pentagon’s or CIA’s assassination of any American citizen or, for that matter, any other citizen.
An American citizen who learns that he has been targeted for assassination has no recourse to prevent his killing. If he kills the assassin or any other Pentagon or CIA official, they will arrest him, prosecute him, and execute him as a terrorist and murderer. If he seeks an injunction in U.S. District Court, they will assassinate him on his way to court. If a relative sues for an injunction on his behalf, the court will dismiss the suit for “lack of standing.” If relatives sue for wrongful death, their suit will be summarily dismissed. If a state grand jury returns an indictment for murder against the Pentagon or the CIA, a federal district court will enjoin the prosecution. If a federal grand jury returns a similar indictment, a federal district judge will summarily dismiss it.
In a national-security state, national security is everything. Once the Pentagon or the CIA utter those two words to justify their assassination of an American citizen, the other three branches of government, including the judiciary, immediately go silent, passive, and deferential.
Can Americans regain their freedom? Of course! But to do so requires a dismantling of the national-security state form of governmental structure and a restoration of a limited-government republic form of governmental structure. Once a critical mass of Americans desire liberty and a limited-government republic over national security and a national-security state, Americans will be on the road toward the restoration of a free society.

Federal Judge Reverses Conviction of Border Volunteers, Challenging Government’s “Gruesome Logic”
February 4 2020
by Ryan Devereaux
The Intercept
A federal judge in Tucson, Arizona, reversed the conviction of four humanitarian aid volunteers on religious freedom grounds Monday, ruling that the government had embraced a “gruesome logic” that criminalizes “interfering with a border enforcement strategy of deterrence by death.”
The reversal, written by U.S. district judge Rosemary Márquez, marked the latest rebuke of the Trump administration’s crackdown on humanitarian aid providers in southern Arizona, and the second time in matter of months that a religious freedom defense has prevailed in a federal case involving the provision of aid to migrants in the borderlands.
The defendants in the case — Natalie Hoffman, Oona Holcomb, Madeline Huse, and Zaachila Orozco-McCormick — were fined and given probation in March of last year for entering the Cabeza Prieta Wildlife Refuge in the summer of 2017 without a permit, driving on a restricted access road and leaving food, water and other humanitarian aid supplies for migrants passing through in the summer heat. They were the first among a group of volunteers with the faith-based humanitarian group, No More Deaths, to go to trial for their aid work in 2019.
The remains of roughly 3,000 migrants have been recovered in Pima County alone since 2000. Experts are confident that the true death toll is much higher. Situated at the heart of the Sonoran Desert, the Cabeza Prieta refuge is one of the deadliest spaces in the region. As Márquez made clear in her decision, the No More Deaths volunteers admitted to the factual claims in the case; that they left aid supplies in “an area of desert wilderness where people frequently die of dehydration and exposure.” But in appealing their convictions, Márquez went on to write, the defendants had successfully argued that their actions — imbued “with the avowed goal of mitigating death and suffering” — were protected under the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, or RFRA.
The defendants established that they were exercising their “sincere religious beliefs,” Márquez wrote, while the government failed to demonstrate that its application of the refuge rules was carried out in the “least restrictive” manner available.
Katherine Franke, a law professor at Columbia, where she is faculty director of the Law, Rights, and Religion Project, called the reversal “fantastic.” Last year, Franke and her colleagues published a report illustrating how the federal government has routinely sided with right-wing or conservative causes in religious freedom cases. The law professor has followed the No More Deaths cases closely, filing motions in support of RFRA defenses. “The lower court’s opinion was so horrible just as a matter of legal reasoning, that it was really nice to see the judge apply a thorough and careful analysis of the religious liberty claim,” Franke told The Intercept. While she anticipates a government appeal, Franke said Monday’s reversal provides a solid foundation for applying RFRA in similar legal contexts.
“The government isn’t going to roll over just because they lose a case or two,” she explained. “But what we’ve got now is developing record of careful analysis from federal courts on how RFRA ought to apply in contexts like this.”
Márquez’s decision comes just four months after U.S. district judge Raner Collins reached a similar decision in the case of Scott Warren, another No More Deaths volunteer hit with federal misdemeanor charges for leaving humanitarian supplies on Cabeza Prieta, who also successfully deployed a RFRA defense against the government’s charges. In addition to the federal misdemeanor case, the U.S. attorney’s office in Arizona brought felony charges against Warren for providing food, water and a place to sleep to two young migrants in 2018. He faced up to 20 years in prison. The first felony trial ended in hung jury. The second led to an acquittal in November. All told, Trump administration prosecutors, working alongside the U.S. Border Patrol and Fish and Wildlife officials, have brought charges against nine No More Deaths volunteers in the past two and a half years.
Monday’s reversal offers the latest evidence that the lengthy prosecutorial campaign has not only failed, it has now resulted in two novel cases in which RFRA has been used to successfully defend the provision of humanitarian aid on the border. Not only that, Márquez included in her decision a critique of the government’s reasoning — one that Franke described as a “stinging defeat.”
Federal prosecutors had argued that the government had a compelling interest in “enforcing the border and controlling immigration,” Marquez wrote, and while the defendants were not charged with immigration offenses, the government “nonetheless” argued that their actions “furthered and encouraged illegal smuggling activity” on the wildlife refuge. “The government seems to rely on a deterrence theory, reasoning that preventing clean water and food from being placed on the refuge would increase the risk of death or extreme illness for those seeking to cross unlawfully, which in turn would discourage or deter people from attempting to enter without authorization,” the judge wrote. “In other words, the government claims a compelling interest in preventing defendants from interfering with a border enforcement strategy of deterrence by death.”
“This gruesome logic is profoundly disturbing,” Márquez wrote. “It is also speculative and unsupported by evidence.” In 2017, 32 sets of human remains were recovered on the Cabeza Prieta Wildlife Refuge, the judge noted. “The government produced no evidence that these fatalities had any effect in deterring unlawful entry,” she wrote. “Nor has the government produced evidence that increasing the death toll would have such an effect.”
Greg Kuykendall, the lead attorney in Scott Warren’s misdemeanor and felony cases, said the reversal was correct on both legal and moral grounds. “It’s an incredibly thoughtful and well-reasoned opinion,” Kuykendall told The Intercept. In addition to offering a clear historical account of when and how RFRA should be applied, Kuykendall argued that Maraquez’s diagnosis of “strategy of deterrence by death” reflected a clear-eyed understanding of what’s at stake in criminalizing humanitarian aid. “That’s exactly what it is,” Kuykendall said. “That’s what the government refuses to actually openly state, but they need dead bodies in order for their deterrence strategies to work.”
“It’s been laid out for judges in the past,” Kuykendall went on to say, “But she has connected the dots and very clearly explains that for the government’s enforcement strategy to work, the more dead bodies the better, and in fact, if you don’t have dead bodies, then it’s not working.”

Martin Luther King
At 6:01 p.m. on April 4, 1968, a shot rang out. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., who had been standing on the balcony of his room at the Lorraine Motel in Memphis, TN, now lay sprawled on the balcony’s floor. A gaping wound covered a large portion of his jaw and neck.
Violence and controversy followed. In outrage of the murder, many blacks took to the streets across the country in a massive wave of riots. The FBI investigated the crime, but many believed them partially of fully responsible for the assassination. A man was arrested, but many people, including some of Martin Luther King Jr.’s own family, believe he was innocent.
What happened that evening?
Striking Sanitation Workers in Memphis
On February 12, thirteen hundred African-American sanitation workers in Memphis went on strike. Though there had been a long history of grievances, the strike was begun as a response to a January 31 incident in which 22 black sanitation workers were sent home without pay during bad weather while all the white workers remained on the job. When the City of Memphis refused to negotiate with the 1,300 striking workers, King and other civil rights leaders were asked to visit Memphis in support.
On Monday, March 18, King managed to fit in a quick stop in Memphis, where he spoke to over 15,000 who had gathered at Mason Temple. Ten days later, King arrived in Memphis to lead a march in support of the striking workers. Unfortunately, as King led the crowd, a few of the protestors got rowdy and smashed the windows of a storefront. The violence spread and soon countless others had taken up sticks and were breaking windows and looting stores.
Police moved in to disperse the crowd. Some of the marchers threw stones at the police. The police responded with tear gas and nightsticks. At least one of the marchers was shot and killed.
King was extremely distressed at the violence that had erupted in his own march and became determined not to let violence prevail. He scheduled another march in Memphis for April 8.
On April 3, King arrived in Memphis a little later than planned because there had been a bomb threat for his flight before takeoff. That evening, King delivered his “I’ve Been to the Mountaintop” speech to a relatively small crowd that had braved the bad weather to hear King speak. King’s thoughts were obviously on his mortality, for he discussed the plane threat as well as the time he had been stabbed. He concluded the speech with
• Well, I don’t know what will happen now; we’ve got some difficult days ahead. But it really doesn’t matter with me now, because I’ve been to the mountaintop. And I don’t mind. Like anybody, I would like to live a long life – longevity has its place. But I’m not concerned about that now. I just want to do God’s will. And He’s allowed me to go up to the mountain. And I’ve looked over, and I’ve seen the Promised Land. I may not get there with you. But I want you to know tonight, that we, as a people will get to the Promised Land. And so I’m happy tonight; I’m not worried about anything; I’m not fearing any man. Mine eyes have seen the glory of the coming of the Lord.
After the speech, King went back to the Lorraine Motel to rest.
A racist petty criminal looking to make a name for himself stalks a well-protected black civil rights leader and finally slays him, then manages to make an almost-clean getaway – but not before dropping the murder weapon (with prints) and his personal radio with his prison ID engraved on it.
It’s almost too perfect because nobody would be that stupid. It must be a CIA-FBI-White House plot. Has to be. There is no way that James Earl Ray, the high-school dropout, Army throw-away, petty thief could stalk Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., kill the most influential civil rights leader of the era and evade an international manhunt for more than two months, only to be busted by Scotland Yard going through a customs checkpoint he wasn’t supposed to be at.
The Rev. Jesse Jackson said “I have always believed that the government was part of a conspiracy, either directly or indirectly, to assassinate Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.,” he wrote in the forward to James Earl Ray’s autobiography Who Killed Martin Luther King Jr.?
Former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations and Atlanta Mayor Andrew Young believes the government was responsible for King’s death, as well. “I’ve always thought the FBI might be involved in some way,” he said. “You have to remember this was a time when the politics of assassination was acceptable in this country. It was during the period just before Allende’s murder. I think it’s naïve to assume these institutions were not capable of doing the same thing at home or to say each of these deaths (King and the two Kennedys) was an isolated incident by ‘a single assassin.’ It was government policy.”
Even Dr. King’s family believes that Martin was killed as the result of a conspiracy involving government officials. Dexter King met with the man convicted of killing his father and later said he believed Ray was not the shooter. There are two issues here that need to be examined. First, did James Earl Ray kill Dr. Martin Luther King in Memphis, Tennessee on April 4, 1968, and second, was the assassination the culmination of a conspiracy to silence the leader of America’s non-violent civil rights and anti-war movement? There are a number of different possible answers. Perhaps Ray was a patsy for a wide-reaching conspiracy. Maybe he was in Memphis on April 4 but didn’t fire the shot. It could be that he was an unwitting pawn in a plan that involved agents of the highest levels of government, up to and including the Johnson White House.
Or it could be that a black-hating sociopath with delusions of grandeur managed to get himself close enough to Dr. King to fire a shot with a scope-equipped high-powered rifle that would have dropped an elk at the same distance.
In comparison to the earlier assassination of President Kennedy, the questions surrounding the murder of Dr. King are a little more clear cut. Witnesses (for the most part) do not quibble on the number of shots fired, or from the originating area. There are few credible conspiracies that claim multiple gunmen, and no evidence that more than one person was on hand in Memphis that day who planned to kill King. Conspiracy theorists must base their accusations on the word of Ray, who pled guilty to the murder in return for a guarantee from Tennessee authorities not to seek the death penalty. Once sentenced to 99 years, Ray immediately began retracting and changing his story that he acted alone.
On the other hand, the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Johnson Administration were clearly on the record in opposing King’s resistance to the Vietnam War and J. Edgar Hoover wanted King disgraced or rendered impotent by any means necessary. The comments of Young and Jackson do not seem as alarmist when one examines the record of harassment, slander and abuse government bodies accumulated in their pursuit of Dr. King. If Hoover wanted King taken out of the picture, could he have authorized assassination? As history has shown, with J. Edgar Hoover, the ends justified the means.
So, who killed Dr. King? Was it a conspiracy? Or was it a single, angry young man acting on his own hatred that ended the life of one of America’s greatest leaders? After thirty years of investigations, theories and speculation, the evidence has pretty much all been gathered and it is possible to draw a conclusion that satisfies the reasonable observer.

Another hidden cost of the fattening of America.
February 4. 2020
by Dr. Michael Suslov, Medical Editor
IRVING, TX — Hospitals around the country are being forced to buy specialized equipment and in some cases even remodel their facilities to cope with the growing number of severely obese patients, according to a survey of hospital purchasing executives.
A survey found that hospitals are seeing more severely obese (overweight by at least 100 pounds) patients than ever before. Most of the respondents to the survey said these patients are having an effect on how their organizations accommodate other patients and hospital visitors. Some hospitals estimate additional costs associated with treating or accommodating the severely obese can reach up to $500,000 per year per institution.
That’s a dramatic statistic. We find that hospitals across the country are buying more large-size beds, larger blood pressure cuffs, wider, reinforced wheelchairs and larger versions of other basic supplies to adjust to patient needs. It’s also a worker safety issue. If hospitals don’t have the right type of equipment, transporting or moving obese patients could lead to injury of hospital personnel. Given the existing nursing shortage, having a nurse out with a hurt back would create additional burdens for the health care organization, so hospitals are looking at this issue seriously.
A typical example is Wausau Hospital in Wausau, Wis., where administrators say they spent an additional $200,000 this year to remodel rooms, order special equipment and train staff to deal with a growing number of obese patients.
“We’ve had to buy special, longer surgical gloves and even needles and syringes,” said Kent Demien, director of materials management at Wausau. “Standard equipment becomes obsolete on many of our larger patients.” He also added that in the last two years, the hospital’s bariatric department has grown from one surgeon to four, although the special supply needs extend to every corner of the hospital where obese patients could be.
The growing number of grossly obese patients drives up costs in non-clinical areas, too. Demien said many patients or hospital visitors are simply too heavy for a standard, wall-mounted toilet, which can accommodate patients up to 300 pounds. The standard wall-mounted toilets cost $350, but the hospital is looking to replace them with sturdier pedestal commodes priced at $750, which can hold up to 2,000 pounds.
“This is a new trend we’re seeing among the 1,400 VHA and UHC hospitals we serve,” Hatcher said. “We’re working on ways to bring these costs down through our purchasing agreements, programs and services.”
The federal Centers for Disease Control has estimated that care for overweight and obese patients costs an average of 37 percent more than for people of normal weight, adding an average of $732 to the annual medical bill of every American.
In a recent survey, hospitals were asked to answer eight questions:
• Has your hospital seen more severely obese patients in the last year than ever before? (80 percent of the hospitals responding to the survey said yes.)
• What specific equipment or supplies has your hospital had to purchase to accommodate larger patients? (The most commonly cited items were beds, wheelchairs, gowns, and blood pressure cuffs.)
• Have you remodeled physical facilities to accommodate obese patients? (17 percent said yes.)
• Do the costs incurred in treating obese patients increase the cost of health care for other patients? (53 percent said yes.)
• Estimate how much the hospital has been impacted financially by the growing number of severely obese patients. (The range was between $3,500 and $500,000 annually.)
• Estimate how much more a seriously obese patient might spend on a hospital visit versus a patient of average weight. (Range was between $500 and $10,000 per visit.)
• Has your hospital introduced any changes in patient procedures to accommodate an increased number of obese patients? (41 percent said yes.)
• How much has your hospital been affected financially by the changes in patient procedures? (Responses ranged from $5,000 to $220,000.)
“It’s hereditary,” “it’s a gland problem,” are the excuses given for the growing number of grossly overweight Americans. Various American health organizations now agree that fully 40% of Americans are significantly overweight and at least 15% of these are truly enormous, weighing over 300 pounds at the bottom end and 800 pounds or more at the top. The real reason for the fattening of America has nothing to do with heredity or glandular disorders and has everything to do with self—indulgence, terrible diet and total lack of exercise. Those who are truly bloated are certainly not expected to live overly long and are guaranteed to suffer from diabetes and serious heart problems before they die.
And after they die, disposing of the mountainous remains presents a serious problem. A very fat person cannot be cremated; they will not fit in the ovens and if by some chance they can be squeezed into a burning kiln with sticks, there is a very good chance that the melting fat will be ignited and either cause a major fire or, at the worst, cause the oven system to explode.
Burying a fat person is also a problem. They are much too big to squeeze into a normal casket and now the American funeral industry has had to manufacture special “fat” coffins that look for all the world like piano crates.
In hospitals, as our article shows, enormous wheel chairs, reinforced like fork lifts are a necessity in all medical centers as are special beds capable of holding behemoths without collapsing. Also, the truly fat cannot squeeze their swollen bulk into the ordinary lavatory without the aid of a crowbar and twenty pounds of Crisco. If they should manage to get inside without having to remove the door first, toilet seats cannot stand up to the enormous weight placed on them and break. Heavy ceramic toilet bowls have been known to shatter, dumping their visitors onto the floor.
Not only do the hospitals have special problems, the commercial airlines are similarly afflicted. A truly fat person cannot sit in the standard aircraft seat and has to buy two seats and have a special safety belt on board to allow them to buckle up prior to takeoff and landing. As far as use of the aircraft lavatories is concerned, it is impossible for one of the truly bloated to even get a leg inside the cramped toilet.
Motion picture theaters cannot seat the enormous and there have been occasions when it took at least three members of the theater staff to pull a jumbo out of a seat into which they had become wedged like a basketball in a gopher hole.
Public transportation such as busses and street cars are also impossible for the very fat and the idea of one attempting to drive anything but a reinforced golf cart is impossible to even contemplate.
What is obviously coming are special Apartments for the Fat, establishments that cater to the truly immense. All rooms would be on the ground floor, beds would rest on concrete pylons, bathrooms would have sunken tubs big enough to float the Titanic, toilets would have to be at least four feet wide and set in cement with flushing controls at foot level and the refrigerators and stoves would have to be of restaurant size to prevent daily trips to the supermarkets and the purchasing of three shopping carts full of food for the day’s needs. The apartment house offices would have to be stocked with Hoyer lifts in case a tenant couldn’t roll out of bed and also keep on hand a number of very strong personnel and various padded garden and carpentering implements to pry guests out of doorways.
The end result of all this will be that the truly tubby will begin to form protest groups, demanding respect, more food and easier access to markets (where a single fat person is fully capable of brushing canned goods off of the shelves on both sides of the aisle at the same time) and very slow crossing lights at street intersections. It has been estimated that it takes an average 600 pounder at least ten minutes to get from one curb to an opposite one and it should be evident that a passenger car, or even a small truck, that impacted with a laboring leviathan wheezing across a crosswalk, would be totally destroyed and the occupants either killed or severely maimed.
Although it might appear that the tremendous of girth are not capable of any kind of productive sexual activity, most of them not having seen any part of themselves located south of the equator in years, they do seem to breed. There has been some Biblical references made to the fatted calf but perhaps there other uses for turkey basters than are dreamt of in our philosophies.
The poor we have always with us and now it looks as if we can add the truly fat to the roster as well. One possible advantage to having a nation filled with tubbies is that in the event of a famine, the rest of the nation can survive.

The Season of Evil
by Gregory Douglas

Preface
This is in essence a work of fiction, but the usual disclaimers notwithstanding, many of the horrific incidents related herein are based entirely on factual occurrences.
None of the characters or the events in this telling are invented and at the same time, none are real. And certainly, none of the participants could be considered by any stretch of the imagination to be either noble, self-sacrificing, honest, pure of motive or in any way socially acceptable to anything other than a hungry crocodile, a professional politician or a tax collector.
In fact, the main characters are complex, very often unpleasant, destructive and occasionally, very entertaining.
To those who would say that the majority of humanity has nothing in common with the characters depicted herein, the response is that mirrors only depict the ugly, evil and deformed things that peer into them
There are no heroes here, only different shapes and degrees of villains and if there is a moral to this tale it might well be found in a sentence by Jonathan Swift, a brilliant and misanthropic Irish cleric who wrote in his ‘Gulliver’s Travels,”
“I cannot but conclude the bulk of your natives to be the most odious race of little pernicious vermin that Nature ever suffered to crawl upon the surface of the earth.”
Swift was often unkind in his observations but certainly not inaccurat

Frienze, Italy
July 2018-August 2019

Chapter 76

The following morning, Montez, dressed in a pair of service coveralls, went into the lobby of the building whose upper stories had been curtailed due to the blockage of Charles Rush’s view of the lake.
Although a native of Spain and a resident of Mexico, he spoke perfect, idiomatic English and he asked the security officer at the desk in the lobby how to get to the elevator control room on the roof, He had a plastic-laminated card from a fictional elevator company attached to the collar of his coveralls and managed to look extremely bored.
The security officer, who had no idea that the Secret Service was one building over, watching everything in the neighborhood from the roof over Rush’s penthouse, made small talk for a few minutes and then actually gave Montez the key to the roof door with the admonition to return it on the way back. Montez was so delighted with this act that he immediately went out the back door of the lobby and in twenty minutes, returned with two copies of the key.
The elevator went to the top floor and the key fit into the lock of the metal door marked ‘Keep Out- No Trespassing.’
Chicago lived up to its name as the windy city and a cold wind blowing in from the lake cut through his cotton coveralls like a knife.
The elevator housing stood in the middle of the roof and the door opened towards the lake so that when Montez walked out onto the duck-boarded roof, the Secret Service men did not see him through their binoculars.
To the north of the building was a large, metal unit containing the air conditioning system for the building, now turned off.
Between the elevator housing and the air conditioning structure was a narrow passage, just wide enough for a small person to squeeze through. Montez was small and he slid along towards the west side of the building, emerging just behind another cooling unit. From its cover, he had an excellent view of the top floor of the Rush building. He took out a small device used by golfers to determine distance and aimed it at the windows of the apartment. The read-out indicated the distance from where he was standing to the penthouse window was exactly 102 feet, seven inches.
So much for getting my shot on the green, he thought while searching the top of the neighboring building for anything of interest. He almost immediately saw a man wearing a winter coat and equipped with binoculars making a sweep of the buildings across the street. He had been told that Rush was heavily guarded and he put the observer down to one of these private guards.
On the way out of the building, he stopped by the security desk and returned the key.
“Thanks, buddy. I’m going to come back tonight when we can shut the elevator system down and replace a worn bushing. About seven OK?”
“Oh yeah, seven is fine. Most everybody goes home at five or six and anyone left can damn well walk down.”
“Well, thanks again and I’ll be back. Will you be on then?”
“Sure thing. I’m here until eight and then I pack it in. See you then.”
Shortly after four thirty that afternoon, Charles Collins and his police chauffeur pulled into the underground parking garage of his apartment. It had been an exceedingly busy day for him and he was very tired. The driver inserted a card in the gate control and when the steel grill slid up, drove the unmarked police car into the dimly lit garage.
Collins, who was riding up in front, got out, pulled his briefcase out of the back seat and turned to go into the elevator. He had just said good night to his driver and closed the back door when a thin man in a gray winter jacket stepped out from behind a concrete post and shot the detective three times in the head with a silenced pistol.
When the driver saw what was happening, he started to get out of his side, pistol in hand but the killer was waiting for him and shot him twice in the head.
He put the pistol in his pocket, pushed the button to open the security gate and walked up the ramp and across the small parkway to the street. Evening traffic was heavy and he walked away from the building, head down and coat collar turned up against the cold lake wind.
Five minutes later, an orthodontist returning home caught the two bodies in the headlights of his Mercedes and was so unnerved that he ran into the same post that had shielded the killer. Collins lay face down on the concrete, his briefcase still in his hand and a thick river of blood had run down and into a drain while the driver lay half in and out of the car, a good deal of his face plastered over the driver’s door.
Within a half hour, the entire area was cordoned off and platoons of uniformed officers ringed the building while a dozen detectives, forensic experts, photographers and medical personnel jammed the garage, greatly inconveniencing a number of tenants who had to park outside on the crowded street, some as far away as six blocks.
Mark Mitnik heard the news while he was dressing for the Presidential occasion and his wife was pleasantly surprised by his extremely jovial behavior when he handed her into their limousine.
“Why are you so up tonight, dear?” she asked as the car headed for the Loop.
“Oh nothing, dear, nothing at all. I found a stone in my shoe and I got rid of it before it tore my sock, that’s all. And you do look lovely tonight.”
They pulled into the garage area of the Rush building at almost exactly the same time as Estaban Montez, carrying a large toolbox, entered the building he had visited earlier. The same guard was on duty and they exchanged pleasantries.
“Do you need the key, buddy?”
“No, I’m going down to the basement first. I won’t need a key for that, will I?”
“Nah. We keep the roof locked because a couple of tenants went broke and jumped off the building, hand in hand. Jesus, what a mess. They landed right on top of a bunch of Chinnese tourists. So now we keep the roof locked up. Go down the center corridor and just past the elevators is a door on your left. That goes down to the basement. The heating room is on the right and the elevator business is straight ahead. Have fun.”
Montez viewed the projected activities as business, not fun, but he smiled back at the guard and then, out of sight, took the elevator to the top floor.
When Mitnik and his wife were checked by the Secret Service and ushered into the penthouse elevator, the President was having a polite conversation with Chicago’s mayor. He remembered how the Chicago political machine had stolen the national election from Nixon and was especially polite to a man whom he hoped would repeat history for him in November.
Charles Rush was circulating among his guests who included the chairman of the State Democratic party, staff assistants, three prominent bankers, five wealthy businessmen and a number of wives and mistresses, a number of Presidential and Mayoral aides, and four grim Secret Service agents looking out of place in their ill-fitting rented tuxedos.wen wondered what the laughter on the staircase was all about.

(Continued)

This is also an e-book, available from Amazon:

The Encyclopedia of American Loons

Ronda Storms

Ronda R. Storms is a former Florida State Senator (10th District) from 2006 to 2012 – she lost her comeback attempt in 2018 – and something of a legend for her deranged lunacy. Prior to serving in the Senate, Storms enjoyed an eight-year tenure on the Hillsborough County Commission (1998-2006).
Adventures in science denial
Storms is probably most famous for her role in promoting the teaching of intelligent design creationism in public school science classrooms. In 2008, Storms introduced an academic freedom bill (co-sponsors were Stephen R. Wise and Carey Baker) modelled on the recommendations of the Discovery Institute, which would give teachers the right to teach the controversy (the bill’s sponsor in the House, Alan Hays, arranged for a private screening of the creationist promotion film Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed for legislators who were to vote on the bill, just to make sure they understood the purpose). The bill underwent substantial revisions, but ended up requiring the intelligent design lesson plan “Critical Analysis of Evolution” (which does not involve critical analysis) to be taught, before ultimately dying in committee. Though she ostensibly only wished to promote critical thinking about science – according to Storms the bill was not about letting religion into classrooms but about protecting the rights of students and teachers who don’t agree with the science behind Darwinian evolution (she curiously didn’t seem care about students and teachers who don’t agree with the spherical Earth theory or the germ theory of disease) – it is worth mentioning that when a proposal to have similar protections extended to sex-education were introduced, Storms voted against them.
In connection with the bill Storms claimed that she was contacted by multiple teachers who had been disciplined for speaking of alternative theories. She wasn’t able to name any, though. Indeed, according to the Department of Education, there has never been a case in Florida where a public school teacher or public school student has claimed that they have been discriminated against based on their science teaching or science course work. Storms is, in other words, more or less as honest as you’d expect a fundie in a position of power and influence to be.
Storms is also a critic of the Dewey Decimal System, primarily because libraries tend to categorize books about creation and creationism with numbers associated with “religion” rather than “science”. According to Storms the system was, therefore, “too confusing” for her.
Storms has made other efforts to favor religion, provide financial support for organizations that work to introduce faith-based initiatives in public schools, introduce school prayers and generally break down the separation between church and state, too.
Yes, there is anti-gay stuff
In 2005, Storms was responsible for introducing a bill that banned displays of books celebrating gay and lesbian pride in county libraries, and indeed for the Commission to “adopt a policy that Hillsborough County government abstain from acknowledging, promoting or participating in gay pride recognition and events” of any kind. The motion passed. Then, because conditions were favorable, she got an addendum placed upon the bill that it cannot be repealed without a super majority vote of at least 5-2 and a public hearing. (It was nevertheless repealed in 2013.) Similarly, when she led a successful effort to block a statute which would prohibit discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation in the workplace, she also managed to raise the number of votes needed from commissioners to place the issue on direct referendum to county voters from four commissioners to five.
As an opponent of gay adoption – “I don’t support putting at-risk children in homes that I think are at-risk themselves” – Storms was ostensibly surprised by criticisms from the gay community, complaining that she had experienced “all sorts of threats and horrible things said and done to me” despite the (alleged) fact that “I’ve never attacked anybody’s appearance”; indeed, according to herself, she had even worked with homosexuals and “have never done anything but treat them with dignity and respect in my personal working relationship with them.” You should probably stress the part after “in”.
Diagnosis: Industrious and zealous, and precisely as honest and reasonable as you’d expect from a deranged fundamentalist in a State Senate. Hopefully neutralized, but she was never alone in her efforts, and there are plenty of similar loons to take her place.

Janet Quinn

Janet Quinn is an “Associate Professor, Adjunct,” (a bit unclear what that means) at the University of Colorado School of Nursing, and a true crackpot. Though she does have a PhD in Nursing Research and Theory Development from NYU, her thesis was on therapeutic touch (TT) (Quinn is a former student of Dolores Krieger) and an excellent example of what is accurately known as tooth fairy science: Quinn ostensibly showed that therapeutic touch need not use physical contact in order to produce results similar to the version that used actual touch. Of course, that result is not very surprising since TT has no (non-placebo) health benefits either way – TT is perhaps most famous for being falsified (e.g.) in an elementary school science project (Rosa et al., published in the Journal of the American Medical Association) – but that was not how Quinn or subsequent TT fans interpreted the findings (the dissertation, we emphasize, did not try to show that TT had any effect, just that actual touch made no difference).
According to her website, Quinn has additional training in “Transpersonal Psychology [no less], Holotropic Breathwork™ (certified) [being certified in a trademarked technique is not something that should bolster confidence], Hakomi Body-Centered Psychotherapy (individuals and couples), Spiritual Direction (certified) [again, nothing to be proud of]”. She has also been a “practitioner of Centering Prayer and Meditation for 20 years” and “[t]eaching, researching and practicing Holistic/Integrative Nursing for over 30 years.” But she is also affiliated with the University of Colorado, some might point out, and indeed she is. Despite the fact that TT is bullshit and Quinn’s other qualifications are steeped in pseudoscienc, her classes and teaching materials are expensive and popular. Ironically, that the perceived benefits of TT are merely reflecting the fact that patients respond positively to extended, caring, interpersonal contact with their nurse was actually demonstrated in a 1989 study by Quinn herself, though she didn’t manage to realize that this was the conclusion.
According to Quinn, TT involves “centering” within your head in order to assess which areas of the energy field feel “out of balance” with the rest of the field; then you clear and mobilize the energy field before, finally, “directing” energy to facilitate healing. Quinn admits, though, that “we don’t have empirical data to demonstrate the existence of a personal energy field,” but “it’s a working hypothesis. In science, you’re allowed to do that.” Well, no; not after it has been shown, as conclusively as tests come, that the technique doesn’t work; it would be a legitimate to entertain such a hypothesis if the technique worked and we hadn’t figured out why it did. Quinn, of course, is not talking about “science” when she says “In science”. (Of course, one may also point out that her “working hypothesis” is a collection of vague metaphors, a half-baked attempt at poetry, and not a working hypothesis at all)
Quinn has also been involved in NCCAM-funded (i.e. taxpayer money) research on Distant Healing Efforts for AIDS by Nurses and ‘Healers’with Elisabeth Targ (daughter of Russell Targ). Targ herself explained the difficulty of doing such research given skepticism in the mainstream medical community; as she put it, she must guard against showing a negative result, because the mainstream will take those negative results and attempt to discredit what she is trying to show. We’ll just leave that admission up there as it is.
Diagnosis: Pseudoscientific nonsense from a New Age crackpot. Her ideas, though, have actually – and despite being New Age mumbo-jumbo with (demonstrably) no health benefits – had a lot of influence on nursing practices and cost taxpayers substantial amounts of money for useless tooth-fairy research. A waste of money, and a waste of a life. Sad.

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