Category Archives: Miscellaneous

Yesterday’s future-TODAY!

Think of how far Technology has advanced in this last century; one hundred years ago the knapsack parachute was invented, a device that would change the ways wars were fought and made flying a little less dangerous, John Browning finished designing his revolutionary pistol, the Colt M1911, and CRT Television was invented, bravely stepping into a world of projector screens and radios.  Those inventions created huge paradigm shifts in the way people could move, could entertain themselves, and kill. In our modern day and age, the vast majority of inventions are catered towards our need to entertain ourselves, many of them beyond the wildest dreams of futurologists. Our tech has expanded to the point were soon we will be able to do some of the things that comic book heroes could never have dreamed of. Remember watching Star-Wars as a kid and seeing Darth Vader get mad over some missing data tapes? The scene looks a whole lot less badass now and way more laughable when you consider that few people even use tapes anymore. Hell, Darth Vader’s suit is in many ways a relic, artificial muscles have been invented and while they haven’t made any arms able to outperform the real deal, they are definitely the kind of prosthetic I’d want. http://arstechnica.com/science/news/2009/03/flexing-carbon-nanotube-muscles.ars Closer to home with our technologies, we find our soldiers outfitted with cameras and gps’s on their helmets and backpacks, their performance monitored and evaluated, their position, as long as these systems last, known at all times. If it were not for the miserly attitude of the Millitary Industrial Complex, we would see this equipment on all American soldiers, and possibly all of their allies soldier’s too. Such technology has positive benefits; the ability to provide soldiers with advanced tactical information plus giving the staff members a better idea for what is going on in the field.

image of a US Army soldier in 2001, outfitted with the then latest technologies for the land warrior project.

File:Land Warrior Iraq 071307.jpghttp://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/thumb/3/33/Land_Warrior_Iraq_071307.jpg/800px-Land_Warrior_Iraq_071307.jpg

Land Warrior as used by a member of he 4th Battalion, 9th Infantry, in Iraq, 2007.

 

Unfortunately such technology could also be used to paint an unflattering view of the soldiers enemies, or the soldiers themselves. The future it seems, could involve simply ‘tagging’ soldiers with micro or even nano chips and using their biometric data, track their performance and increase their capabilities by responding with the proper kinds of drug or mental therapies.  Heck by counteracting the fatigue poisons that build up in the human body, and with injections of cortisol and adrenaline you could potentialy create super soldiers who can run faster, longer and hit harder like steve Rogers, the Original Captain America (albeit with tempers more like wolverine). Unfortunately with all this new technology we have created a new generation of men, no longer do we look to the strong or the brave, but rather, to the capable; who the hell knows how to build a car, or how the components work?  How would we work if one or more of our currently placed systems broke down. Who do the incapable turn to, when machines make other machines, the job of people simply to maintain the makers. Is this technology that enables us to know what another is doing, feeling, at any moment all the time a true replacement for the human desire for contact or are we all becoming like superman, all knowing, known by all, and yet anonymous, alone.

Images Taken from Wikimedia Commons/Wikipedia.org

 

Antineoplastic activity of cannabinoids

Pretty fascinating. Scientists have known about THC curing cancer since 1975!!!!!!!!!!!!!

http://www.erowid.org/plants/cannabis/references/journal/1975_munson_nci_1/1975_munson_nci_1_text.shtml#abstract

Journal of the National Cancer Institute,
Vol. 55, No. 3, September 1975, pp.597-602
by A.E. Munson, L.S. Harris, M.A. Friedman, W.L. Dewey, and R.A. Carchman

Summary:
Lewis lung adenocarcinoma growth was ****** by the oral administration of delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol, delta-8-tetrahydrocannabinol, and cannabinol (CBN), but not cannabidiol (CBD). Animals treated for 10 consecutive days with delta-9-THC, beginning the day after tumor implantation, demonstrated a dose-dependent action of ****** tumor growth. Mice treated for 20 consecutive days with delta-8-THC and CBN had reduced primary tumor size. CBD showed no inhibitory effect on tumor growth at 14, 21, or 28 days. Delta-9-THC, delta-8-THC, and CBN increased the mean survival time (36% at 100 mg/kg, 25% at 200 mg/kg, and 27% at 50 mg/kg;, respectively), whereas CBD did not. Delta-9-THC administered orally daily until death in doses of 50, 100, or 200 mg/kg did not increase the life-spans of (C57BL/6 X DBA/2) F (BDF) mice hosting the L1210 murine leukemia. However, delta-9-THC administered daily for 10 days significantly inhibited Friend leukemia virus-induced splenomegaly by 71% at 200 mg/kg as compared to 90.2% for actinomycin D. Experiments with bone marrow and isolated Lewis lung cells incubated in vitro with delta-8-THC and delta-9-THC showed a dose-dependent (10 -4 10 -7) inhibition (80-20%, respectively) of tritiated thymidine and 14C -uridine uptake into these cells. CBD was active only in high concentrations (10-4). J Natl Cancer Inst 55: 597-602, 1975.

Antineoplastic Activity of Cannabinoids

Investigations into the physiologic processes affected by the psychoactive constitutuents of marihuana [delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (delta-9-THC) and delta-8-tetrahydrocannabinol (delta-8-THC)] purified from Cannabis sativa are extensive (1). However, only recently have attempts been made to elucidate the biochemical basis for their cytotoxic or cytostatic activity. Leuchtenberger et al. (2) demonstrated that human lung cultures exposed to marihuana smoke showed alterations in DNA synthesis, with the appearance of anaphase bridges. Zimmerman and McClean (3), studying macromolecular synthesis in Tetrahymena, indicated that very low concentrations of delta-9-THC inhibited RNA, DNA, and protein synthesis and produced cytolysis. Stenchever et al. (4) showed an increase in the number of damaged or broken chromosomes in chronic users of marihuana. Delta-9-THC administered iv inhibited bone marrow leukopoieses (5), and Kolodny et al. (6) reported that marihuana ;may impair testosterone secretion and spermatogenesis. Furthermore, Nahas et al. (7) showed that in chronic marihuana users there is a decreased lymphocyte reactivity to mitogens as measured by thymidine uptake. These and other (8) observations suggest that marihuana (delta-9-THC) interferes with vital cell biochemical processes, though no definite mechanism has yet been established. A preliminary report from this laboratory (9) indicated that the ability of delta-9-THC to interfere with normal cell functions might prove efficacious against neoplasms. This report represents an effort to test various cannabinoids in several in vivo and in vitro tumor systems to determine the kinds of tumors that are sensitive to these compounds and reveal their possible biochemical sites of action(s).


John F. Kennedy – The President & The Press

Mr. Chairman, ladies and gentlemen:

I appreciate very much your generous invitation to be here tonight.

You bear heavy responsibilities these days and an article I read some time ago reminded me of how particularly heavily the burdens of present day events bear upon your profession.

You may remember that in 1851 the New York Herald Tribune under the sponsorship and publishing of Horace Greeley, employed as its London correspondent an obscure journalist by the name of Karl Marx.

We are told that foreign correspondent Marx, stone broke, and with a family ill and undernourished, constantly appealed to Greeley and managing editor Charles Dana for an increase in his munificent salary of $5 per installment, a salary which he and Engels ungratefully labeled as the “lousiest petty bourgeois cheating.”

But when all his financial appeals were refused, Marx looked around for other means of livelihood and fame, eventually terminating his relationship with the Tribune and devoting his talents full time to the cause that would bequeath to the world the seeds of Leninism, Stalinism, revolution and the cold war.

If only this capitalistic New York newspaper had treated him more kindly; if only Marx had remained a foreign correspondent, history might have been different. And I hope all publishers will bear this lesson in mind the next time they receive a poverty-stricken appeal for a small increase in the expense account from an obscure newspaper man.

I have selected as the title of my remarks tonight “The President and the Press.” Some may suggest that this would be more naturally worded “The President Versus the Press.” But those are not my sentiments tonight.

It is true, however, that when a well-known diplomat from another country demanded recently that our State Department repudiate certain newspaper attacks on his colleague it was unnecessary for us to reply that this Administration was not responsible for the press, for the press had already made it clear that it was not responsible for this Administration.

Nevertheless, my purpose here tonight is not to deliver the usual assault on the so-called one party press. On the contrary, in recent months I have rarely heard any complaints about political bias in the press except from a few Republicans. Nor is it my purpose tonight to discuss or defend the televising of Presidential press conferences. I think it is highly beneficial to have some 20,000,000 Americans regularly sit in on these conferences to observe, if I may say so, the incisive, the intelligent and the courteous qualities displayed by your Washington correspondents.

Nor, finally, are these remarks intended to examine the proper degree of privacy which the press should allow to any President and his family.

If in the last few months your White House reporters and photographers have been attending church services with regularity, that has surely done them no harm.

On the other hand, I realize that your staff and wire service photographers may be complaining that they do not enjoy the same green privileges at the local golf courses which they once did.

It is true that my predecessor did not object as I do to pictures of one’s golfing skill in action. But neither on the other hand did he ever bean a Secret Service man.

My topic tonight is a more sober one of concern to publishers as well as editors.

I want to talk about our common responsibilities in the face of a common danger. The events of recent weeks may have helped to illuminate that challenge for some; but the dimensions of its threat have loomed large on the horizon for many years. Whatever our hopes may be for the future–for reducing this threat or living with it–there is no escaping either the gravity or the totality of its challenge to our survival and to our security–a challenge that confronts us in unaccustomed ways in every sphere of human activity.

This deadly challenge imposes upon our society two requirements of direct concern both to the press and to the President–two requirements that may seem almost contradictory in tone, but which must be reconciled and fulfilled if we are to meet this national peril. I refer, first, to the need for far greater public information; and, second, to the need for far greater official secrecy.

The very word “secrecy” is repugnant in a free and open society; and we are as a people inherently and historically opposed to secret societies, to secret oaths and to secret proceedings. We decided long ago that the dangers of excessive and unwarranted concealment of pertinent facts far outweighed the dangers which are cited to justify it. Even today, there is little value in opposing the threat of a closed society by imitating its arbitrary restrictions. Even today, there is little value in insuring the survival of our nation if our traditions do not survive with it. And there is very grave danger that an announced need for increased security will be seized upon by those anxious to expand its meaning to the very limits of official censorship and concealment. That I do not intend to permit to the extent that it’s in my control. And no official of my Administration, whether his rank is high or low, civilian or military, should interpret my words here tonight as an excuse to censor the news, to stifle dissent, to cover up our mistakes or to withhold from the press and the public the facts they deserve to know.

But I do ask every publisher, every editor, and every newsman in the nation to reexamine his own standards, and to recognize the nature of our country’s peril. In time of war, the government and the press have customarily joined in an effort based largely on self-discipline, to prevent unauthorized disclosures to the enemy. In times of “clear and present danger,” the courts have held that even the privileged rights of the First Amendment must yield to the public’s need for national security.

Today no war has been declared and however fierce the struggle may be, it may never be declared in the traditional fashion. Our way of life is under attack. Those who make themselves our enemy are advancing around the globe. The survival of our friends is in danger. And yet no war has been declared, no borders have been crossed by marching troops, no missiles have been fired.

If the press is awaiting a declaration of war before it imposes the self-discipline of combat conditions, then I can only say that no war ever posed a greater threat to our security. If you are awaiting a finding of “clear and present danger,” then I can only say that the danger has never been more clear and its presence has never been more imminent.

It requires a change in outlook, a change in tactics, a change in missions–by the government, by the people, by every businessman or labor leader, and by every newspaper. For we are opposed around the world by a monolithic and ruthless conspiracy that relies primarily on covert means for expanding its sphere of influence–on infiltration instead of invasion, on subversion instead of elections, on intimidation instead of free choice, on guerrillas by night instead of armies by day. It is a system which has conscripted vast human and material resources into the building of a tightly knit, highly efficient machine that combines military, diplomatic, intelligence, economic, scientific and political operations.

Its preparations are concealed, not published. Its mistakes are buried, not headlined. Its dissenters are silenced, not praised. No expenditure is questioned, no rumor is printed, no secret is revealed. It conducts the Cold War, in short, with a war-time discipline no democracy would ever hope or wish to match.

Nevertheless, every democracy recognizes the necessary restraints of national security–and the question remains whether those restraints need to be more strictly observed if we are to oppose this kind of attack as well as outright invasion.

For the facts of the matter are that this nation’s foes have openly boasted of acquiring through our newspapers information they would otherwise hire agents to acquire through theft, bribery or espionage; that details of this nation’s covert preparations to counter the enemy’s covert operations have been available to every newspaper reader, friend and foe alike; that the size, the strength, the location and the nature of our forces and weapons, and our plans and strategy for their use, have all been pinpointed in the press and other news media to a degree sufficient to satisfy any foreign power; and that, in at least in one case, the publication of details concerning a secret mechanism whereby satellites were followed required its alteration at the expense of considerable time and money.

The newspapers which printed these stories were loyal, patriotic, responsible and well-meaning. Had we been engaged in open warfare, they undoubtedly would not have published such items. But in the absence of open warfare, they recognized only the tests of journalism and not the tests of national security. And my question tonight is whether additional tests should not now be adopted.

That question is for you alone to answer. No public official should answer it for you. No governmental plan should impose its restraints against your will. But I would be failing in my duty to the nation, in considering all of the responsibilities that we now bear and all of the means at hand to meet those responsibilities, if I did not commend this problem to your attention, and urge its thoughtful consideration.

On many earlier occasions, I have said–and your newspapers have constantly said–that these are times that appeal to every citizen’s sense of sacrifice and self-discipline. They call out to every citizen to weigh his rights and comforts against his obligations to the common good. I cannot now believe that those citizens who serve in the newspaper business consider themselves exempt from that appeal.

I have no intention of establishing a new Office of War Information to govern the flow of news. I am not suggesting any new forms of censorship or new types of security classifications. I have no easy answer to the dilemma that I have posed, and would not seek to impose it if I had one. But I am asking the members of the newspaper profession and the industry in this country to reexamine their own responsibilities, to consider the degree and the nature of the present danger, and to heed the duty of self-restraint which that danger imposes upon us all.

Every newspaper now asks itself, with respect to every story: “Is it news?” All I suggest is that you add the question: “Is it in the interest of the national security?” And I hope that every group in America–unions and businessmen and public officials at every level will ask the same question of their endeavors, and subject their actions to the same exacting tests.

And should the press of America consider and recommend the voluntary assumption of specific new steps or machinery, I can assure you that we will cooperate whole-heartedly with those recommendations.

Perhaps there will be no recommendations. Perhaps there is no answer to the dilemma faced by a free and open society in a cold and secret war. In times of peace, any discussion of this subject, and any action that results, are both painful and without precedent. But this is a time of peace and peril which knows no precedent in history.

It is the unprecedented nature of this challenge that also gives rise to your second obligation–an obligation which I share and that is our obligation to inform and alert the American people to make certain that they possess all the facts that they need, and understand them as well–the perils, the prospects, the purposes of our program and the choices that we face.

No President should fear public scrutiny of his program. For from that scrutiny comes understanding; and from that understanding comes support or opposition and both are necessary. I am not asking your newspapers to support the Administration, but I am asking your help in the tremendous task of informing and alerting the American people. For I have complete confidence in the response and dedication of our citizens whenever they are fully informed.

I not only could not stifle controversy among your readers–I welcome it. This Administration intends to be candid about its errors; for as a wise man once said: “An error does not become a mistake until you refuse to correct it.” We intend to accept full responsibility for our errors and we expect you to point them out when we miss them.

Without debate, without criticism, no Administration and no country can succeed and no republic can survive. That is why the Athenian lawmaker Solon decreed it a crime for any citizen to shrink from controversy. And that is why our press was protected by the First Amendment– the only business in America specifically protected by the Constitution–not primarily to amuse and entertain, not to emphasize the trivial and the sentimental, not to simply “give the public what it wants”–but to inform, to arouse, to reflect, to state our dangers and our opportunities, to indicate our crises and our choices, to lead, mold, educate and sometimes even anger public opinion.

This means greater coverage and analysis of international news–for it is no longer far away and foreign but close at hand and local. It means greater attention to improved understanding of the news as well as improved transmission. And it means, finally, that government at all levels, must meet its obligation to provide you with the fullest possible information outside the narrowest limits of national security–and we intend to do it.

It was early in the Seventeenth Century that Francis Bacon remarked on three recent inventions already transforming the world: the compass, gunpowder and the printing press. Now the links between the nations first forged by the compass have made us all citizens of the world, the hopes and threats of one becoming the hopes and threats of us all. In that one world’s efforts to live together, the evolution of gunpowder to its ultimate limit has warned mankind of the terrible consequences of failure.

And so it is to the printing press–to the recorder of man’s deeds, the keeper of his conscience, the courier of his news–that we look for strength and assistance, confident that with your help man will be what he was born to be: free and independent.

And this is Stephen Colberts modern adaptation of it.

85 per cent of all drugs produced in Afghanistan are shipped out by US aircraft.

http://presscore.ca/2011/?p=753

85 per cent of all drugs produced in Afghanistan is being shipped aboard US aircraft. Foreign diplomats have stated that the United States military buy drugs from local Afghan drug lords who deal with field commanders overseeing eradication of drug production. The administration of President Hamid Karzai, including his two brothers, Kajum Karzai and Akhmed Vali Karzai, are involved in the CIA controlled narcotics trade – one of the main reasons why the U.S. installed Karzai as De facto president of Afghanistan.

“The Americans are working hard to keep narco business flourishing in both countries,” says Mikhail Khazin, president of the consultancy firm Niakon. “They consistently destroy the local infrastructure, pushing the local population to look for illegal means of subsistence. And the CIA [Central Intelligence Agency] provides protection to drug trafficking.”

U.S. freelance writer Dave Gibson recalled in an article published in the American Chronicle what a U.S. foreign intelligence official, speaking on the condition of anonymity, revealed of the CIA’s record of involvement with the international drug trade. The official said: “The CIA did almost the identical thing during the Vietnam War, which had catastrophic consequences – the increase in the heroin trade in the USA beginning in the 1970s is directly attributable to the CIA. The CIA has been complicit in the global drug trade for years, so I guess they just want to carry on their favourite business.”

The New York Times, May 20, 2001
http://www.nytimes.com/2001/05/20/world/taliban-s-ban-on-poppy-a-success-us-aides-say.html

Taliban’s Ban On Poppy A Success, U.S. Aides Say

UNITED NATIONS, May 18 — The first American narcotics experts to go to Afghanistan under Taliban rule have concluded that the movement’s ban on opium-poppy cultivation appears to have wiped out the world’s largest crop in less than a year, officials said today.

The American findings confirm earlier reports from the United Nations drug control program that Afghanistan, which supplied about three-quarters of the world’s opium and most of the heroin reaching Europe, had ended poppy planting in one season.

Under a U.S. and NATO occupation that wiped out Opium trade has been revived.

Reuters, Feb 19, 2009
http://uk.reuters.com/article/idUKTRE51I2II20090219

Afghan 2008 opium crop was second biggest: U.N. report

Afghanistan’s opium harvest … 2008 … was … the second biggest on record, a United Nations body declared.

While the area under cultivation was reduced by a fifth, better yields meant production dropped only 6 percent to 7,700 tons, after a record 8,200 tons in 2007, the U.N.’s International Narcotics Control Board said in its annual report.

More than seven years after the U.S.-led invasion, Afghanistan still grows more than 90 percent of the world’s illegal opium poppies, the source of heroin.

NATO forces are not allowed to eradicate crops although NATO allies agreed … to allow their soldiers to carry out direct attacks on Afghan drug lords and laboratories.

Afghan officials let drug traffickers operate with impunity and those who do target the opium trade risk their lives, the report said. Last year (2008), 78 officials trying to eradicate opium crops were killed, six times the toll in 2007.

Air America Afghanistan

Air America was an American passenger and cargo airline established in 1950 and covertly owned and operated by the Central Intelligence Agency’s (CIA) Special Activities Division from 1950 to 1976. It supplied and supported US covert operations in Southeast Asia during the Vietnam War.

Air America transported opium and heroin on behalf of Hmong leader Vang Pao. This has been supported by former Laos CIA paramilitary Anthony Poshepny, former Air America pilots, U.S. diplomats, former DEA agents, Congressional oversight committees and other people involved in the war.

University of Georgia historian William M. Leary claims that this was done without the airline employees’ direct knowledge (except for those employees that said they did know about it), and that the airline itself did not trade in drugs (only transported them).

Air America officially disbanded on June 30, 1976, and was later purchased by Evergreen International Airlines, which continues to provide support for U.S. covert operations.

Today Air America has been revived by the CIA, this time using U.S. military aircraft to transport the illegal drugs out of Afghanistan and into the United States.

This is about cocaine but it explains the relationship between all the actors involved in illegal drug trade. Good song.

Or if you are less than convinced of the dodgy history of government drug dealing, check out:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/CIA_drug_trafficking

ROFL, now thats shocking!