London After Midnight's official blog

This is the blog for Sean Brennan and London After Midnight. For more information please see the LAM website at londonaftermidnight.com.

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Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Worldwide Distrust of USA • Milk Not Recommended • REPORT: Vegetarian Diet Needed to Prevent Global Crisis • Pussy Riot • Contrary to Republican Warnings, all is Well with Repeal of Don't Ask Don't Tell • Meat Farmers Hinder Medical Science • more

- Worldwide Distrust of US Intentions Follows 11 Years of War
    Global survey shows a US held in contempt by its enemies and mistrusted by its allies
- We Are at War
    The War on Terror exploits the tragedy of September 11th for the benefit of a very few. Poor people continue to pay an enormous price, while the elites, including our own government and the corporations it answers to, ignore everything but the influx of cash into their coffers. The war business is profitable if you refuse to count the cost of human lives.
- Drug Resistant H1N1 in Europe
    Two Dutch travellers were infected with oseltamivir-resistant influenza A(H1N1)pdm09 viruses with an H275Y neuraminidase substitution in early August 2012. Both cases were probably infected during separate holidays at the Catalonian coast (Spain). No epidemiological connection between the two cases was found, and neither of them was treated with oseltamivir before specimen collection. Genetic analysis of the neuraminidase gene revealed the presence of previously described permissive mutations that may increase the likelihood of such strains emerging and spreading widely.(NOTE: The N1H1 virus, or Swine Flu, jumped to humans on farms raising animals for meat).
- Eating Fewer Animal Products Leads to Weight Loss
    A recent medical study revealed that successful long-term weight loss was attributed to decreased meat, cheese, and sweets consumption.
- Milk: No Longer Recommended or Required
    A substantial body of scientific evidence raises concerns about health risks from cow’s milk products. These problems relate to the proteins, sugar, fat, and contaminants in dairy products, and the inadequacy of whole cow’s milk for infant nutrition.
- National Pork Producers Council: Anti-Science & Anti-Animal
    The National Pork Producers Council (NPPC) summed up its anti-scientific and anti-animal views when, in attempting to defend the industry’s confinement of mother pigs in cages so small the animals can’t even turn around, NPPC communications director Dave Warner told the National Journal, “So our animals can’t turn around for the 2.5 years that they are in the stalls producing piglets. I don’t know who asked the sow if she wanted to turn around…”
    When your own communications director makes a remark like that, you have an industry in crisis. I’ve contacted Mr. Warner three times asking for any scientific evidence he has that he believes justifies cramming pregnant pigs into crates. He hasn’t replied, because he has no reply; the science is in, and it all points in one direction: Gestation crates are so cruel that pig “farmers” could be locked in jail on felony cruelty charges if they abused dogs or cats so egregiously.
- Farm Use of Antibiotics Defies Scrutiny [Meat Farmers Hindering Critical Science]
    The numbers released quietly by the federal government this year were alarming. A ferocious germ resistant to many types of antibiotics had increased tenfold on chicken breasts, the most commonly eaten meat on the nation’s dinner tables.
    But instead of a learning from a broad national inquiry into a troubling trend, scientists said they were stymied by a lack of the most basic element of research: solid data.
    Eighty percent of the antibiotics sold in the United States goes to chicken, pigs, cows and other animals that people eat, yet producers of meat and poultry are not required to report how they use the drugs — which ones, on what types of animal, and in what quantities. This dearth of information makes it difficult to document the precise relationship between routine antibiotic use in animals and antibiotic-resistant infections in people, scientists say.
- Climate Change Stress Killing Forests, and Why it Matters
    Forests cover some 30 percent of Earth’s surface, and it’s hard to overestimate how crucial they are to the functioning of the planet. Forests provide shelter for uncountable numbers of species, hold soil in place that would otherwise wash away, pull excess carbon out of the atmosphere, absorb and re-emit water at such a rate that they literally control the weather, and serve as an economically vital natural resource.All of those functions have long been endangered by human activities such as excessive logging and clear-cutting to open new agricultural land. But another factor, increasingly, is the stress of climate change — in particular, the higher temperatures and more frequent and intense droughts that human-generated greenhouse gases have begun to trigger. Now a new paper, released Sunday in Nature Climate Change, has attempted to lay out just how climate stress affects forests, and how serious the consequences of could be.
- Why Keep Looking for the Right Way to do the Wrong Thing?
    True, there may have been a time when killing was necessary for our survival, but for those of us living in the modern world, that is (thankfully) no longer the case. Today, we continue to harm and kill animals only out of habit, convenience, pleasure or for profit. Killing for those reasons is simply not ethically-defensible, regardless of whether the killing is done by a worker in a factory in Ohio or by some local guy in our own backyard.
- Ray Bellamy: Denial won't save the Earth
    The climate scientists are in nearly unanimous agreement that increasing greenhouse gases from the burning of fossil fuels are causing global warming and associated severe weather events. The far more frequent dramatic weather is exactly what the experts predicted more than 30 years ago and will now be expected to be the new norm. The atmosphere we all depend on for our life-giving oxygen is being used by major industries, many of which, such as the petroleum refiners, we are subsidizing with our tax dollars.
- Vegetarian Diet Needed To Prevent Global Food And Water Crisis, Report Says
    A new report warns that unless the world's population adopts a vegetarian diet over the next 40 years, we may face a global food shortage crisis nothing short of a catastrophe.
- New Solar Technology Generates Electricity and Hydrogen Gas
    A new solar panel technology includes photovoltaic cells that could generate electricity during the day while at the same time producing hydrogen gas to power a fuel cell at night. The technology that makes this possible is two new types of nanocrystals that replace the traditional organic molecules in a solar panel's construction.
    The nanocrystals, which are made of zinc selenide and cadmium sulfide, with a platinum catalyst added, could potentially create a solar panel and fuel cell combination that would provide clean energy 24 hours a day, while also lasting much longer than the typical 20-year lifespan of today's conventional solar panels.
- Don't Ask Don't Tell Study Shows No Negative Effects On Military One Year After Repeal
    In the fierce debate that led up to President Barack Obama's repeal last September of Don't Ask Don't Tell, the 1993 law that banned gay and lesbian service members from serving openly in the military, supporters of the law warned that a repeal would have disastrous consequences for the armed forces. One letter, signed by more than 1,000 military officers, claimed that a repeal would undermine recruiting efforts, negatively affect "troop readiness" and "eventually break the All-Volunteer Force."One year later, the first academic study of the military's new open-service policy has found there have been no negative consequences whatsoever.
- 4 Reasons To Keep Fighting to Free Pussy Riot (Slideshow)
    Pussy Riot members Maria Alyokhina, Yekaterina Samutsevich and Nadezhda Tolokonnikova have been jailed for two years and two other members of the band have reportedly fled Russia. Four reasons to keep fighting to free Alyokhina, Samutsevich and Tolokonnikova and to support the opposition to Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Sean