Tuesday, November 30, 2010

A new level of chutzpah in psychiatric ghostwriting

The New York Times has a revealing article about how a popular textbook for family doctors on how to treat mental illness, apparently written by two big name psychiatrists, was almost entirely written by a ghostwriting service under the direction of a large drug company.
Two prominent authors of a 1999 book teaching family doctors how to treat psychiatric disorders provided acknowledgment in the preface for an “unrestricted educational grant” from a major pharmaceutical company.
But the drug maker, then known as SmithKline Beecham, actually had much more involvement than the book described, newly disclosed documents show. The grant paid for a writing company to develop the outline and text for the two named authors, the documents show, and then the writing company said it planned to show three drafts directly to the pharmaceutical company for comments and “sign-off” and page proofs for “final approval.”
“That doesn’t sound unrestricted to me,” Dr. Bernard Lo, a medical ethicist and chairman of an Institute of Medicine group…
David A. Kessler, former commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration, is memorably quoted as saying “To ghostwrite an entire textbook is a new level of chutzpah.” “I’ve never heard of that before. It takes your breath away.”

The book is reported to be Recognition and Treatment of Psychiatric Disorders: A Psychopharmacology Handbook for Primary Care by Charles B. Nemeroff and Alan F. Schatzberg.
Nemeroff. Now where have I heard that name before?

Link to NYT piece on ghostwritten psychiatry textbook.

LeBron not happy with struggling Heat

Whether you believe ESPN the Magazine’s Chris Broussard’s report that several Heat players, particularly LeBron James, have grown frustrated with coach Erik Spoelstra doesn’t really matter. James has already said as much repeatedly in recent days.  He complained about playing too many minutes, which required a meeting with Spoelstra. He said he doesn’t like playing point guard, which Spoelstra has asked him to do for much of the young season. And he maintained that, unlike in seasons past, he isn’t having fun.  On Monday there was another meeting between James and Spoelstra. This confab supposedly focused on the offense, where James and the Heat have been struggling, and not on the ESPN report of discord — though it’s fair to assume the topic came up.  Of course James isn’t totally happy. He’s given up money, a massive piece of his reputation, the freedom to walk freely around his hometown. He’s also sacrificed shot attempts and his beloved statistics to be with the Heat. Yes, it’s early in the process, but the results so far have been underwhelming. — ESPN

Drew Brees Is Sports Illustrated Sports Man Of The Year!

Posted by kellidaisy on November 30th, 2010 at 11:46 am

Drew Brees is named SI's Sports Man of the Year
drew brees 240 225x300 Drew Brees Is Sports Illustrated Sports Man Of The Year!Celebrity sports dad Drew Brees has been named the Sports Illustrated Sports Man of the Year for 2010! Drew Brees led his team, the New Orleans Saints, to their very first Super Bowl win last year after joining the team in 2006.

This morning on the Today show, Drew Brees said; “It’s an unbelievable honor, for everything that it stands for, and it just makes me reflect back on the last five years in New Orleans, and the teams that I’ve had the opportunity to play for. And it’s just been a special, special journey.”
But Drew Brees isn’t just an excellent athlete; his foundation also has helped close to 50 schools and organizations in New Orleans to aid in the Hurricane Katrina recovery.

“The more that I’ve learned about the award and that it goes well beyond what you accomplish on the field, that it’s very much about what you do off the field as well, with community service and your family, makes the award even more special to me,”
“I needed New Orleans so badly back in 2006, just somebody to believe in me, somebody to care about me,” he said. “And that’s why myself and my wife Brittany, we just tried to throw ourselves into the community, to do our part.”

Drew Brees and his wife, Brittany have 2 sons together. Drew Brees is the 57th recipient of the Sports Illustrated Sports Man of the Year honors. What do you think of Drew Brees as this year’s winner?

Senate Passes Food Safety Bill That Would Increase FDA Authority

Earlier today, the Senate passed its version of a new food safety bill that would increase the authority of the Food & Drug Administration in making recalls and inspecting food processing facilities. The intent behind the bill is to proactively prevent outbreaks of tainted food instead of just dealing with the negative health and economic after effects.

Among the salient points of the legislation:

* The FDA would have the power to demand food recalls, instead of merely requesting that companies recall products.

* A large increase in the number of FDA inspections of food processing plants, with an emphasis on foods that are considered most high risk.

* Grocery stores will be required to to post prominently a list of recently recalled foods.

* The FDA gains more control over food imports, including increased inspection of foreign processing plants and the ability to set standards for how fruits and vegetables are grown abroad.

While the bill covers about 80% of the U.S. food supply, it does not cover slaughterhouses or most meat and poultry processing plants. Those still fall under the jurisdiction of the Dept. of Agriculture.

The legislation has been welcomed by large food producers who have recently taken huge hits from tainted foods like eggs, peanut butter and spinach. Even those who weren't responsible for recalled products still feel the sting as consumers shy away from buying these items.

Meanwhile, advocates for smaller farmers who sell a majority of their produce locally say the bill could crush small farms under a mountain of paperwork and red tape they are not equipped to handle.

The bill now heads to the House of Representatives, which introduced its own version of this overhaul earlier in the year. The House could stall the bill if it decides to dicker over the differences between the two bills, or it could rush it through in order to pass the legislation before adjourning for the year.

Senate Passes Overhaul of Food Safety Regulations [NY Times]

Video: Cancun: a lost battle against climate change? euronews

Video: 'S.Korea-US war games: Playing with fire in room with dynamite' RT

Video: Google says it will cooperate with EU antitrust probe

The Whole Eurozone Could Be Ablaze by New Year

Late Sunday night the EU announced that they have agreed upon an 85 Billion Euro ($113 Billion) bailout for Ireland. Early media reports sought to calm global stock markets by suggesting that crisis talks were over and the deal was just about inked.

The problem is, however, that even though the EU wants to give Ireland a bailout, the Irish people may have none of it. Ireland’s debt crisis, though a drop in the bucket compared to that of Spain (and the USA), may be the catalyst for a complete bond meltdown in Europe if the Irish Parliament refuses to accept assistance from the IMF et. al. :
Therefore, the next week will be crucial, in Ireland. The next week could likely decide the fate of the Eurozone.
If the popular perception grows over the coming week that the Cowen government sold out the country to the IMF and the EU, then it is possible—very possible—that the austerity budget will not pass on December 7.
This would be a disaster to the European Union.
Is such an outcome likely? Will the Irish reject the austerity budget on December 7? Will they instead force the Irish banks to default on their debt?

But if the Irish reject the austerity budget on December 7, it is obvious that the Spanish problems will come to a head a lot faster.
An Irish rejection of the bailout would send the bond markets into a frenzy—Spanish debt would immediately come under pressure, likely crashing before Christmas. Italy would come immediately next. The whole Eurozone could be ablaze by the New Year’s.
Therefore, the EU needs to make the December 7 budget vote go smooth—they need to pull out all the stops and make the Irish understand the situation. They need to make them see the wisdom of making sacrifices for the well being of British and German banks.
Source: Gonzalo Lira
We realize that the goings on in Europe are not the concern of the majority of Americans - we’ve got plenty of problems right here at home - but, consider what may happen to US stocks, bonds and our economy in general if Europe collapses.

Correction: Not if, but when.

We’ve maintained, that like the US, the coming European collapse is inevitable. Even if the Irish accept the bailout, the EU still has Italy to deal with, as well as Spain, which would require a bailout five to ten times times larger than Greece, Ireland and Portugal combined.

In early November we asked Is a Monster Reversal In Stocks, Commodities, and the US Dollar in the Works?

We will soon find out, either by the end of this year if Ireland doesn’t take the bailout, or by next Summer, at which time Spain’s problems will be the talk of mainstream financial pundits the world over.
Whatever the case, whenever Spain and Italy finally do have a meltdown in their debt markets, we can see massive capital flows shifting from Europe to the US.

This means that the Euro may be annihilated, while the US dollar benefits.
The result?

If we had to guess, further continuation of the European debt crisis will lead to falling equities, commodities and perhaps even precious metals (for a time). Depending on the severity of how the EU crisis is perceived, we may even see a sharp correction or crash in US financial markets.

This, of course, may lead to further erosion of the American consumer, as many will fear that a double dip recession has occurred (those paying attention realize that we’re way past recession and in the throes of another great depression), leading to further reinforcement of the negative feedback loop of rising unemployment, falling wages, and increased government assistance.

Keep an eye on Europe, it is a good indicator of things to come here in the US.

Author: Mac Slavo

Date: November 29th, 2010
Visit the Author's Website: http://www.SHTFplan.com

China tried to sabotage US computers, says WikiLeaks

WASHINGTON WikiLe-aks released 250,000 diplomatic cables to The New York Times on Sunday  det-ailing the candid conversations between Washington and embassies around the world.

The documents show that Chinese government operatives have waged a coordinated campaign of computer sabotage targeting US and its allies. Some of the cables, made available to The Times were written in February 2010.

 Gaming out an eventual collapse of North Korea: American and South Korean officials have discussed the prospects for a unified Korea, should the North’s economic troubles and political transition lead the state to implode. The South Koreans even considered commercial inducements to China, according to the American ambassador to Seoul. She told Washington in February that South Koreans believe that the right business deals would ‘help salve’ China’s “concerns about living with a reunified Korea” that is in a ‘benign alliance’ with US.

Bargaining to empty the Gitmo prison: When American diplomats pressed other countries to resettle detainees, they became reluctant players in a State Department version of “Let’s Make a Deal.” Slovenia was told to take a prisoner if it wanted to meet with President Obama, while Kiribati was offered incentives worth millions of dollars to take in a group of detainees.

Ahmadinejad: Iran's enemies "did a bad thing" and created "problems" for uranium enrichment cintrifuges with a virus

Hmmm... Crippled computers, dead nuclear scientists... What's next?

(INN) Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad admitted Monday that a virus has damaged computers throughout Iran and created problems in centrifuges that are involved in enrichment of uranium in several nuclear sites.

Iran's enemies “succeeded in creating problems for a limited number of our centrifuges with the software they had installed in electronic parts,” Ahmadinejad told reporters. “They did a bad thing. Fortunately our experts discovered that and today they are not able (to do that) anymore," he said.

This is the first time that Iran has officially admitted that its enemies are responsible for damaging its nuclear program by means of a computer virus.

Less than one week ago it was reported that major technical problems in Iran's nuclear program forced the shutdown of thousands of centrifuges enriching uranium at Iran's Natanz plant. Diplomats said the problems caused Iranian experts to “briefly power down” the machines they use for enrichment.


US embassy cables: Verdict on the leaks about the Middle East

What do the cables released by WikiLeaks tell us about diplomacy and US foreign policy in the Middle East?
Gary Younge, Seumas Milne, Craig Murray, Richard Norton-Taylor, Juan Cole, Abbas Edalat, Phil Wilayto

guardian.co.uk, Monday 29 November 2010

Seumas Milne: 'Global mobilisation of US power against Iran is an ominous thread'
The relentless global mobilisation of US power against Iran – and of Washington-backed Arab autocracies and dictatorships for an American attack on Tehran – is an ominous thread that runs through thousands of the leaked state department WikiLeaks cables published in the Guardian.

Not only do they underline the danger represented by the threat of aggression against Iran over its nuclear programme, which of course Tehran insists is for peaceful purposes only; but the repeated private demands by the Saudi king Abdullah to "cut off the head of the snake"backed up by Jordan, Egypt, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain (and, of course, Israel) – also serve to drive home the utterly unrepresentative nature of the client Arab regimes that underpin western power in the Middle East.

While the Arab rulers fear Iran and want the US to attack it, the majority of their people support Iran's nuclear programme and believe it would be "positive" for the region if Iran did develop nuclear weapons – according to the most recent poll carried out by the US Zogby polling organisation and Maryland University in Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Jordan and other pro-western Arab states. Asked which countries threatened their security, 88% replied Israel, 77% the US and just 10% Iran.
No doubt Saudi and Egyptian leaders will be more careful about what they say to American ambassadors in future......"

# posted by Tony

The Democrat way – Voter Fraud in NY1 congressional race

vote democrat its easier than workingIt’s the progressive liberal Democrat way of winning an election. If you aren’t in a craphole of a district that’s already heavily Democrat, rig elections to win! That seems to be what’s happening in the last House congressional race that hasn’t been decided as of yet. Right now the Republicans are at a gain of 63 House seats, with NY1 still up in the air. Fox News investigation has uncovered evidence of voter registration illegalities, including one voter who apparently voted twice. The candidates in this race is far left Democrat Tim Bishop and Republican challenger Randy Altschuler.

A Fox News Voter Fraud Unit review of approximately 438 of the absentee ballot voters, who also maintain mailing addresses in New York City, reveals that 48 have double registrations. They voted by absentee ballot in Suffolk County, but are also listed as current “active” voters on the New York City rolls. Being registered in two separate jurisdictions is illegal and is a felony in New York State.
In addition, our investigation reveals that one absentee ballot was apparently submitted in the name of a Democratic voter enrolled in Suffolk County, while election records at the Board of Elections in New York City show that the same voter voted, on Election Day, in Manhattan.

Clinton blasts State Department leaks [by Wikileaks] as 'an attack'

By Mimi Hall and Richard Wolf

WASHINGTON — The Obama administration scrambled Monday to control the diplomatic damage from a quarter-million leaked State Department documents reverberating across the nation's capital and around the globe.

The White House ordered a government-wide review of procedures to safeguard classified data and vowed to prosecute anyone who broke U.S. law by leaking the latest trove of documents to the online whistle-blower WikiLeaks.

"This disclosure is not just an attack on America's foreign policy interests," Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton said. "It is an attack on the international community — the alliances and partnerships, the conversations and negotiations, that safeguard global security and advance economic prosperity."

Attorney General Eric Holder said the government was conducting a criminal investigation and would hold responsible "anybody who was involved in the breaking of American law."

The e-mails and other documents released by WikiLeaks provide a rare glimpse into government negotiations and unfolding world events.

Governments in Europe condemned the leaks. Italian Foreign Minister Franco Frattini dubbed them "the Sept. 11 of world diplomacy."

White House press secretary Robert Gibbs said President Obama was "not pleased," calling that reaction "an understatement."

At the center of the controversy were The New York Times and other news organizations that began publishing stories about the documents on Sunday. The Times defended publication of the documents as serving "an important public interest."

Few current or former U.S. officials agreed. Rep. Pete Hoekstra of Michigan, senior Republican on the House Intelligence Committee, called the leak a "catastrophic" breach of trust.

The documents, which WikiLeaks said would be released over a period of months, show:

•U.S. diplomats were instructed to collect personal data on United Nations officials, including flight schedules, credit card numbers, Internet passwords and even some biometric information.

Former U.S. ambassador to the United Nations John Bolton questioned the authenticity of that cable. "I have never seen one like that," he said. Diplomats "are not competent to engage in espionage."

Clinton defended the diplomats' work. State Department spokesman P.J. Crowley said, "Our diplomats don't break the law."

•Arab countries, including Saudi Arabia, are far more concerned about Iran's nuclear program than they have said publicly. "It should not be a surprise to anyone that Iran is a source of great concern, not only in the United States," Clinton said.

•The U.S. bartered with other countries to try to get them to take some of the terrorism suspects being held at the Guantanamo Bay prison.

Contributing: Kevin Johnson and the Associated Press

Corporate Greed Will Kill The Internet

Comcast is at it again:
Level 3 Communications Inc., an Internet backbone company that supports Netflix Inc.'s increasingly popular movie streaming service, complained Monday that cable giant Comcast Corp. is charging it an unfair fee for the right to send data to its subscribers.
Comcast replied it is being swamped by a flood of data and needs to be paid.
Level 3 said it agreed to pay under protest, but that the fee violates the principles of an "open Internet." It also goes against the Federal Communications Commission's proposed rules preventing broadband Internet providers from favoring certain types of traffic, it said.
This is the exact reason that we need net neutrality. It also hits at the heart of what should be anti-trust laws. Consider the fact that Comcast isn’t only the largest residential internet provider in the country, but also the largest cable provider. Cable companies have seen a huge decline in subscriptions in recent years while companies like NetFlix have experienced huge growth. This is Comcast’s attempt to squash the competition and the Justice Department and FTC should get involved right away.

Check Out Official Trailer To Halle Berry's 'Frankie and Alice'

Berry's 'Frankie and Alice'

has been provided with the trailer to Halle Berry's upcoming film, 'Frankie and Alice,' which also stars Stellan SkarsgÄrd, Phylicia Rashad ('For Colored Girls') and Chandra Wilson of TV's 'Grey's Anatomy.'

Directed by Geoffrey Sax, the film is a moving psychological drama based on the harrowing true story of Frankie Murdoch (played by Berry), a woman suffering with multiple personality disorder in early 1970s Los Angeles.

'Frankie and Alice' opens on December 10, 2010 at the Landmark Nuart Theater in Los Angeles, before its official release on February 4, 2011.

Rashad Walker Jr.: Sleeping Baby Shot Dead in His Car Seat

Rashad Walker Jr., Sleeping Baby Shot Dead in Car Seat

Rashad Walker Jr. (pictured) was just 20 months old when he died. The young child was killed in the back of his mother's minivan in Syracuse, N.Y., when he was shot with up to 10 bullets while he was sleeping at 4:30 p.m. this past Sunday. His mother was holding him when paramedics arrived on the scene.

Walker died at 6:45 p.m. in the hospital, but he was not the intended target. The story of Rashad Walker is clearly one of the most tragic incidents we've read about all year. It takes us back to the police shooting of Aiyana Jones, the 7-year old in Detroit who was shot while sleeping during a police raid. This story is also personal to me because I live in Syracuse, a city that (like so many others) continues to be plagued by gun violence.

Events like this emphasize the importance of community policing and helping officers to apprehend those who are responsible for creating this kind of pain in our communities. Also, these incidents tell us that we've got to do something to slow down the gun violence in America's cities. The weapons that are killing our children should be taken off the streets.

Another thing about Syracuse, as well as many other urban areas around the nation, is that the educational system is plagued with significant inadequacies. There are not enough activities to keep young people off the streets, and there are few, if any, jobs available for inner-city youth. Such dire conditions breed the kind of hopelessness which leads to violent incidents like this one.

The criminal justice system serves to make matters worse by showing an insatiable willingness to abuse and incarcerate defendants rather than rehabilitate them. By removing so many Fathers from the inner city, we have children who grow up to become either victims or perpetrators of violent crime. This cycle has got to stop.