Monday, October 06, 2014

The country needs a blessing. The USA is waiting for Pope Francis.

October 4, 2014
By Alan Sosnowski

The chilliest air (click here) since last spring will blast the northern Plains and Midwest this weekend and will make areas from the Central states to the East and South feel like autumn for a couple of days.
The sweep of autumn air will follow a dose of drenching downpours and severe weather in some locations.
Temperatures will take a dramatic tumble over parts of the Midwest. When compared to afternoon highs from early this week, early morning temperatures this the weekend may be 30 to 50 degrees lower. With gusty winds factored in, AccuWeather RealFeel® Temperatures will plummet....

This forecast of flooding, high winds, damaged infrastructure and injuries or deaths can be found nearly everyday in the USA now. These days considering the poverty level, the decrease in social supports add to that the climate crisis and it is completely understandable why God is a real solace for people.

NBC News

A line of powerful thunderstorms rumbled across Dallas on Thursday, knocking out power for thousands and grounding flights — part of a system that stretched to the Great Lakes and threatened to bring flash floods, hail and perhaps even tornadoes....

Gusts as strong as 70 mph, (click here) almost the force of a tropical storm, were recorded as the storms tore through Dallas in the late afternoon, The Weather Channel reported. Police reported one minor injury after the roof was blown off a building at Arlington Baptist College, and a teacher in Denison was taken to the hospital after lightning either struck her or struck the ground next to her outside an elementary school, the county emergency management director said....

Ernst? She is painting herself as the challenge to Former Secretary of State Clinton.

October 6, 2014

Simon Maloy 

Iowa Republican Joni Ernst (click here) is an interesting person with an unlikely political success story. She was foundering badly in the race for Iowa’s open Senate seat, the story goes, until she released an ad boasting of her experience castrating hogs. “Washington’s full of big spenders,” Ernst says to the camera, “let’s make ‘em squeal.” Through bizarre political alchemy and overwhelming metaphorical significance, her personal story of cutting the balls off pigs propelled her to the GOP nomination. Removing testicles from still-living animals became central to her political identity, as reflected in headlines like this one from ABC News: “Hog-Castrating, Harley Davidson-Riding Joni Ernst Wins Iowa Senate Primary.”...

FOX gave her a spot to talk about herself and what she is going to do for the country. She is painting herself as a military leader, probably to rival Eisenhower. She already is picking up the anti-Russia doctrine of McCain. She loves war, makes no apologies for any deaths in Iraq and portrays someone who would be willing to go to war, or at the very least support it enthusiastically at the drop of a hat.

If you had ever been to Iowa you would know that pork futures is a big deal. What Interstate is it.? Hm. It's been awhile since I was out there. I-80. If you drive east across, or west for that matter, Iowa on I-80 the road traverses rolling hills. Kansas is like that, too. Hogs are in Kansas as well. But, Iowa in particular is clearly Hog Country. When coming to the top of a hill one can see for 50 to 60 miles of more down the road. I-80 runs fairly straight through the state. But, at the top of every hill are large steel building shining in the sun containing pigs. The Iowa pig industry is enormous. It is easy to decide on a campaign slogan, "I  am not afraid to kill pigs for a living."

This is the FOX link: "Could Joni's Military Experience Shake Up Pentagon?" (click here)

Tell me she isn't painted by FOX to be the first "Female War President." I told you. Two years and the campaign will be about war all over again.

I have to look through her POLICIES, because, what she doesn't say in this soliloquy are SPECIFICS. No facts, simply "Vote for Me" because I am pretty, obviously conservative, hate abortion and contraception for OTHERS and consider war the ultimate goal of anyone's life. And let's face it with a husband that is a ranger she knows all the ins and outs of anything global. 

Ever notice how Republicans will condemn contraception but the media is too polite to ask if they every used contraception or if their spouses did?

But, she lacks particulars for THIS election. Obviously, she hasn't been challenged.

The demographics of Iowa (click here) doesn't really fit in with the idea the citizens are all farmers. The people identify with that Midwest Ho-down 'living the good life' attitude, but, the population of Iowa is a majority of non-farm folks. As a matter of fact Iowa has it's fair share of manufacturing and brags an unemployment rate of over 4 percent.  I would think addressing the people abandoned by the Ernst campaign as sheep to an ideal image might be interesting to talk to and find out exactly how they are doing and how they think their lives can be improved. 

The Iowa Farmers worry is weather. That should be an introduction to the climate crisis and finding out how they are fairing and what the bottom line of their balance sheets look like. That brings up The Farm Bill. When I ask farmers, small family farmers how they are doing these days while they jump over puddles and look for a crop to survive, I want to know how the Farm Bill helped this year. Inevitably, they always state the Farm Bill isn't for the family farms, it is for the corporate farms. They'll say in order to get money from the Farm Bill one needs at least one lawyer and no less than two CPAs. 

The small family farm may or may not be in abundance, but, where they exist they see success as doing it without government help. THOSE are the people that need a voice, not just corporations that produce GMOs.

But, for Iowa the real political landscape isn't the farms, it is the people living day to day as Middle Class. I am sure there are many that want a minimum wage bill. The 'ideal Iowa,' from where I stand has yet to be discovered. Children and education, parents with good paying jobs. AND how much of that 4% unemployment today was resolved by President Obama and his policies? (click here)

Coal is dead. Now, the ceremony to bury it is completing. The world is waking and the future is more important. FINALLY.

President Obama is exactly right on Ebola. Duplicity in testing, once in West Africa, second in USA, eventually the HHS will write a policy for a recheck of returning Americans and foreign guests and business people even after returning to the country. I would expect if this infectious virus continues to be a problem there will be a more comprehensive policy that will require community nurses to have a clinic available for rechecks in the USA up to three weeks after return date. That will require additional funding and the question is where to put them has to be decided.

The idea of suing persons infected comes from the lawsuits that came from HIV, too. 

The LGBT Marriage is decided. There is no laws that will stand to remove civil rights of the LGBT community. It's over. If the GLBT community believes the future requires an amendment to the US constitution they should begin to lobby for it. An amendment to establish marriage equality would pass easily in 26 states. The amendment would have to be written as a bill and passed by 2/3rds of the Congress. I know the percentages aren't really there in the Congress, but, the decision by the Supreme Court to pass on appeals is strong persuasion especially with states that have already established marriage equality. I would guess the folks in Massachusetts are feeling pride to the victory today. I congratulate them and the stalwarts like Barney Frank. Job well done everyone. 

President Obama didn't start the war on coal. I did. That is no lie. I watched a grandfather die of Black Lung from Pennsylvania Anthracite Coal. I watched piles of coal tailing burn a dull brilliance all night across from my grandparents home. I slid across the kitchen floor that was angled down because the mine under the house allowed the sinking of the front right corner of the house. My grandfather and today my aunt checks the house basement every year and repair as necessary in Olyphant, Pennsylvania on East Scott Street in the valley between two step hills. I watched as the smog from coal would turn trees black and I learned about the carbon dioxide robbing my children and their children of their future. Believe me when I take responsibility for the war on coal, I mean it.

Coal is finished. Even the Republicans are running away from it. But, don't expect them to embrace alternatives, they are embracing natural gas for the benefit of their cronies.

...The more popular dodge in American politics (click here) usually runs in the other direction: acknowledge humanity’s role in exacerbating global warming, then hem and haw about whether anything needs to be done from a cost-benefit perspective. But Snyder and Sandoval have essentially chosen the mirror-opposite mix: ignore the cause, then move on to the policy — albeit modestly — anyway....

The five permanent nuclear countries should offer help in cleaning up and securing the site.

October 6, 2014
By Oren Dorell

Iranian  media report (click here) a massive blast at the military site near Tehran, where the nuclear detonators are suspected of having been tested years ago.

State news agency IRNA reported that a fire broke out at an "explosive materials production unit" Sunday night and killed two employees, citing Iran's Defense Industries Organization.

Iranian opposition site Sahamnews described the incident as an explosion near Parchin that shattered windows 9 miles away.

The United Nations nuclear watchdog, the International Atomic Energy Agency, has sought access to the Parchin military complex, about 20 miles southeast of Tehran, since it was provided documents that described alleged nuclear detonator tests at the site....

It can't be a small explosion to be felt 9 miles away. I'd like to know what a Geiger Counter reads.

I would think it prudent for the Iranian government to issue evacuation orders to the people in the surroundings area. If there is nuclear material on fire, it may be airborne particles by now.

The facilities is 19 miles southeast of Tehran. Which way is the wind blowing?

Pope Francis summons a Synod to find the path to a more merciful church.

October 5, 2014
By Silvia Poggioli

Pope Francis (click here) has summoned bishops from all over the world to Rome to discuss issues concerning families – including hot-button issues like artificial contraception and gay civil unions.

The meeting, called a synod, opened on Sunday and is seen as a test of Francis' vision of a more merciful Church.

Not since the landmark Second Vatican Council half a century ago has a church meeting raised so much hope among progressive Catholics — and so much apprehension among conservatives....

I knew he would. I didn't expect it this soon. He is great and loved Pope.

By Elisa Harris .- During the opening session (click here) for the extraordinary synod on the family, Pope Francis told participants not to be afraid of saying what they truly think, and that only by doing this can they reach real conclusions.
“You have to say all that which in the Lord you feel you have to say: without human respect, without timidity,” the Pope told synod participants in his Oct. 6 opening remarks....
“And, at the same time, you must listen with humility and accept with an open heart what your brothers say. Synodality is exercised with these two attitudes.”...

...Initiated yesterday with a mass presided over by the pontiff, the Extraordinary Assembly of the Synod of Bishops on the Family reflects on the theme “The pastoral challenges of the family in the context of evangelization,” and was called for by the Pope in order to form a more concrete reflection for the Ordinary Synod to take place in 2015.
The synod will conclude with the beatification of Pope Paul VI, institutor of the synod of bishops, by Pope Francis on Oct. 19....

Many Catholics are waiting for the canonization of Mother Teresa. She was beatified in 2003.

Breaching using the entire body makes it perfectly clear to "Get Lost."

Ebola will be difficult to contain in the poor, homeless and other language citizens without education of the public about the disease.

...the risk of transmission from fomites in an isolation ward and from convalescent patients is low...

This research shows low incidence of viable virus on fomite, not NO incidence. The low incidence is after cleaning with recommended infection control guidelines. This virus lives on fomite. 

Just because 'low' seems like 'no' that is a DENIAL. Among some social groups the spread will be increased because any sanitation is unavailable to them.

I might point out the research on Ebola is not from large populations, but, from nutritionally depleted individuals. Did the depleted nutritional status increase the progression of the disease? Probably. That means a well nourished person, such as a homeless American, might carry out an infection rate greater than an African. The possibility of Ebola to spread in the USA is actually greater than Africa due to the healthier lifestyles because of better nutrition. 

I would never underestimate Ebola. It has mutated and any research currently published has a limited population exposed to the disease. 

...We found EBOV (click here) to be shed in a wide variety of bodily fluids during the acute phase of illness, including saliva, breast milk, stool, and tears. In most cases, the infected bodily fluid was not visibly contaminated by blood. Of particular concern is the frequent presence of EBOV in saliva early during the course of disease, where it could be transmitted to others through intimate contact and from sharing food, especially given the custom, in many parts of Africa, of eating with the hands from a common plate. However, the isolation of EBOV from only 1 saliva specimen, in contrast to the 8 that were RT-PCR positive, could suggest that the virus is rapidly inactivated by salivary enzymes or other factors in the oral cavity that are unfavorable to virus persistence and replication. EBOV has been previously documented in saliva by RT-PCR, but no attempt was made to culture virus or to explore the temporal dynamics of virus shedding in that study. Marburg virus, the other member of the Filoviridae family, has been isolated as well as detected by RT-PCR in saliva from a patient with a fatal case of Marburg hemorrhagic fever in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (authors' unpublished data). The higher mortality among patients with RT-PCR-positive saliva likely reflects increased virus shedding in patients with high viremia, which has been previously noted to be an indicator of a poor prognosis....

The HIV crisis was found to spread in people who do not speak or read English.

Civilization that has enjoyed increasing longevity will be ill prepared to realize the depth of the fatal rate of Ebola. They need education today at health clinics, doctor offices and counter tops proven to useful in distributing health information to the public. 

Symptoms and early intervention has to be stressed. Someone who believes they have symptoms needs to be welcome for assessment without judgement and/or cost.

HHS will need additional funding to provide a public education campaign. It would be nice for media to provide free time and/or line space for any education campaign in any city or town or hamlet.

Corruption and/or Indifference?

October 5, 2014
By Adam Nossiter

Freetown , Sierra Leone — It has been sitting idly (click here) on the docks for nearly two months: a shipping container packed with protective gowns, gloves, stretchers, mattresses and other medical supplies needed to help fight Sierra Leone’s exploding Ebola epidemic.

There are 100 bags and boxes of hospital linens, 100 cases of protective suits, 80 cases of face masks and other items — in all, more than $140,000 worth of medical equipment locked inside a dented container at the port since Aug. 9.

Hundreds of people have died of Ebola in Sierra Leone since then, and health workers have endured grave shortages of lifesaving supplies, putting them at even greater risk in a country reeling from the virus....

...A recent surge of cases there quickly overwhelmed health workers, with protective gear so lacking that some nurses have worked around the deadly virus in their street clothes.

More than 80 health care workers in Sierra Leone have died in the outbreak, and even in the capital, Freetown, some burial crews wear protective gowns with gaping holes in them, a clear indication of the urgent need for more supplies.

The government official who pleaded for the shipment to come in said that the political tensions may have contributed to the delay, to prevent the opposition from trumpeting the donations....

Now, about "How did we get to this point?"


Compassion and eager cooperation is mandatory.

The World Health Organization (WHO) has an isolation model for a city that worked for SARS.

February 21, 2013
By Peter Shadbolt

Hong Kong -- In scenes (click here) that would not have been out of place in a Hollywood science fiction thriller, at dawn on March 31, 2003, armed police and Hong Kong health authorities dressed in biological suits, theater masks and surgical gloves descended on Amoy Gardens housing estate.

Working swiftly on an order from the Department of Health to isolate Block E, the residents were sealed in. Under 24-hour medical surveillance, they could neither leave the block nor receive visitors, according to a report from the Hong Kong Department of Health.

Later moved to confinement camps under quarantine laws that had not been invoked since an outbreak of bubonic plague in 1894, the residents of Amoy Gardens were locked out for 10 days as doctors, clinicians, sewerage experts and engineers scoured the block for clues....

The blame game regarding Ebola is a method to turn the emergency into a political issue. The WHO has contained Ebola for a very long time. What changed this time? The virus changed. 

Containment has worked before and The West never saw a reason to worry about it. Today there is not only additional funding, but, the movement of treatments and military deployment to institute successful containment again.

Let's face it, the problem with Ebola today isn't about the spread of the disease, but, the apathy of The West to end the virus decades ago. You shall reap what you sow.

Even if the Executive Branch of the USA wanted to emergently close the ports of access to the USA, it wouldn't have the additional funding.

The recess of Congress recognized by "The Rule of Law" begins at least by the first Friday in August in odd numbered years, but by July 31st otherwise, until the second day after Labor Day. This law generously recognized a diligent Congress not one so lazy they are never in session.

Congress needs a structured work schedule such as 40 hours a week for at least nine months of the year. The Congress would have to find a way to maintain civilized structure if they were forced to perform the country's business 252 days out of the year from 9AM to 5PM for a total of 2016 hours per year.

The Legislative Reorganization Act of 1970 amended (click here)

The 2016 hours per year would be exclusive without counting holidays as session hours.

August 2, 2014
By Bryce Covert

Congress managed to adjourn on Friday night, (click here) sending all members home for a legislatively required recess for the entire month of August after becoming a close contender for the least productive Congress ever, with lots of unfinished business on the table.
The Legislative Reorganization Act of 1970 requires that the House and Senate take a break“not later than July 31 of each year,” or in an odd-numbered year “that Friday in August which occurs at least thirty days before the first Monday in September (Labor Day) of such year to the second day after Labor Day.” Congress can stay if the country is in a state of war, but that hasn’t happened since 1941. The law was passed after Congressional sessions had stretched so long that in 1963, the session began in January and ended in December with just a three-day weekend as a break in the whole time.
Lawmakers can come back early if both houses agree to it. And of course many of them hold town halls and other political or campaign events and meetings while they’re home. But they also get another break in December and often get nearly 250 days off from work in the nation’s capitol each year.
The American worker, on the other hand, could very well get no days off from work in a year. We are the only advanced country in the world that doesn’t guarantee that workers get some paid vacation time. There is no law, as there is for Congress, making sure they can take a break. The European Union, on the other hand, requires 20 paid vacation days, and many countries go further, such as the mandated 30 days in France, 28 in the United Kingdom, and 25 in Austria, Denmark, Finland, Norway, and Sweden. Even our northerly neighbors Canada require 10....

Palestine is being recognized as an autonomous nation by Sweden.

October 5, 2014
By Bathseva Sobelman

Responding to a statement (click here) by Sweden’s new prime minister that his country would recognize Palestine as a state, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu cautioned Sunday that such an action will “not promote peace” but impede it.
It was not immediately clear from Stefan Lovfen's remarks when Sweden intended to formally recognize Palestinian statehood, but Palestinian officials welcomed the move as courageous and historic....

Israel has pushed past civilized resolves to the plight of Palestine for far to long and in doing so they are losing the support of The West.

The victory against Ebola in the USA will occur at the local level, not the federal level.

October 5, 2014

(Judge Clay Jenkins) ...The low risk (click here) individual who was identified by our local team as a contact has been found and is being monitored....

There is a role for all levels of government, but, contact location is a definitely local strategy.

The state level provides financial support and additional personnel to assist local authorities in finding contacts. The federal level has to apply it's agencies in finding treatment.

Every person alive knows there are illegal immigrants coming into the USA everyday. A federal piece of paper that says they can't come in to the USA doesn't stop a darn thing regardless of a border guard at our southern border every few miles and fences. When west African governments tried to quarantine an entire section of cities, the security of law and order was destroyed with violent protests against the government. It won't work.

What will stop Americans from enter the USA after traveling to West Africa? There are already four Americans afflicted with the disease. The idea the flow of people is possible to control is ridiculous. It is false security. This is the worst time to cut social services to the poor, it places them on the street and out of reach to help.

Wasn't Judge Jenkins involved in the compassionate outreach to the children at the border? He is remarkable. He has been fearlessly involved with the family of the West African man currently in treatment.