"Pilate saith unto him, What is truth? And when he had said this, he went out again..."

Location: Tampa, FL, United States

Sunday, May 27, 2007

Local Pastor and Wife Taking a Press Beating

A local (Tampa, FL) husband and wife pastor team with a large nondenominational church and television "ministry" have been the brunt of several articles recently in the Tampa Tribune (some of the articles linked below). In the editorial section today were multiple articles related to the topic, most of which were by writers piling on the husband and wife team. One reader writing in their defense noted the wealth of ministries the couple have launched and the people helped in the process.

Where there's smoke there's usually fire. In spite of the people helped pastors are held by God to a higher standard than are sheep and if even one of the more serious allegations are true it should call into question their qualifications to continue as ministers, regardless of the good they've overseen through the years.

One can't rule out a sort of triangulation manuever here by this husband and wife duo--give away one dollar, help one person, take 2 dollars, destroy 2 people. The common thread in most of the allegations reported related to the bilking of members (see: bling, less) in one way or another. It will be interesting to see if this team skates through this controversy or not.

Of Faith, Fame & Fortune (May 20, 2007)
Dream Home Win Proves Too Good To Be True (May 25, 2007)
Widow: Pastors Reneged On Deal To Care For Me (May 27, 2007)


Hitler Would be Proud

The federal government apparently think it's alright to subject people to medical testing without their prior consent. As reported here, there's a hunch that there may be a better way to hydrate trauma victims than is currently practiced. Those bastions of defenders of the collective health--the NIH (National Institutes of Health) and the FDA (Federal Drug Administration) have alrady granted approval for the study to move forward.

Researchers setting up the experiments are allowing those in the community not willing to participate to wear a bracelet stating such. So, the burden of adorning jewelry falls to the recalcitrant, anti-community citizens as opposed to the willing participants. If the study only used consenting participants who wore a bracelet to that effect, then the nature of the study is morally acceptable. The way it's being set up now requires the patients to be counted as community property. In another era we might refer to this as slave-mentality.

The eye-popper here is not a hypothesis that the hypertonic saline-dextran solution is akin to hydrochloric acid or something--it's not--but that the federal government is foisting itself on people against their will, denying them their liberties in the process.

Saturday, May 26, 2007

Bill Maher interviews Ron Paul

Leftist talk show host Bill Maher recently "interviewed" Republican candidate for president Congressman Ron Paul (R-Texas), and as you can tell from this short video, continually attempted to ridicule his guest. Of particular interest is how be scoffed at Paul's belief that American slavery likely would have ended without a civil war (1:25 of video). Paul told Maher that slavery had ended without war in every major country except ours (some of which, but not mentioned in the video-- Argentina, Colombia, Chile, Mexico, Bolivia, Uruguay, Ecuador, Peru and Venezuela, to name a few. Years ranging from 1813 to 1854).

Splenda is 95-99% Sugar! Surprised?

Splenda's makers--Johnson & Johnson--state their product Splenda doesn't have any calories. You can read it for yourself on their ubiquitous yellow packets or the Splenda website, where it states, "SPLENDA® No Calorie Sweetener contains sucralose (SPLENDA® Brand Sweetener), the no calorie sweetener made from sugar, so it tastes like sugar, with no unpleasant aftertaste."
However, about 95-99% of what's in a Splenda packet are sugars--dextrose and maltodextrin to be precise--aka "bulking agents." The Splendonistas sugarcoat the the language and refer to these bulking agents as carbohydrates. The active ingredient in Splenda vastly credited for its sweetness is sucralose. Sucralose in fact is about 600X sweeter than sugar hence the miniscule amounts thrown into each packet, and the need for a bulking agent to give the things a little weight and volume.

It seems the makers of Splenda submitted studies to the FDA using research on strictly sucralose, not Splenda itself, when seeking FDA approval. Hence, the loopholish workaround to get their product on the market and claim it's a "no calorie" sweetener. How many sales would they lose to consumers bent on using zero calorie sweeteners if they had to advertise their product as the "4 calorie sweetener," when competitor Sweet'N Low packets read, "Zero calorie sweetener" and Equal packets read, "0 calorie sweetener?" (To be fair, Sweet'N Low and Equal also contain sugars in their products so it's not like the Splendonians are the only shifty ones here.)

Talk about marketing wars.

So next time you dump three packets of Splenda into your coffee, remember the three "no calorie" packets provide 12 calories. But it's not really the handful of calories they sneak into your body that's aggravating but the disingenuous tactics they use in manipulating the consumer in thinking they've escaped the dangers of sugar while still achieving sweetness apart from ingesting a calorie.

P.S. For the nerdy amongst us wondering where the 95-99% figure came from, the Splendanites consent to there being one gram of "carbohydrates" (i.e. sugar) in their 0.035 oz yellow packets. With one ounce of something containing 28.34-30 grams (depending on your definition of an ounce), you can run the numbers and find that if there's one gram of sugar (dextrose and maltodextrin in these packets that only leaves room for about 0.015-0.05 gm (or 15mg to 50mg) of sucralose per 0.035 oz (1015mg- 1050mg) packet.


Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Jamestown Celebration?

When the Queen Mummy swung through the states recently one of her stops was at Jamestown. Together with American noteables the 400th anniversary of the settling of Jamestown was celebrated. Nevermind that Jamestown was an abysmal failure until private property rights were honored. Today history exists to serve the present needs of movers and shakers as perceived by the minds of said movers and shakers. Thomas diLorenzo delved more into and Jamestown its history.

Sunday, May 13, 2007

Green For Life

Victoria Boutenko's book Green for Life makes a very compelling case for people to markedly increase their consumption of raw foods. In fact, she advocates a 100% raw food diet. She does weave her belief in evolution into her writing and as such fails to recognize the greater latitude God affords us in our dietary choices. That being said...

Boutenko, her husband and two kids made remarkable strides in their health and healing when switching to a raw food diet. After plateauing out seven years into it she discovered green smoothies, and incorporated them into their raw diet. Green smoothies are a blend of fruit and greens (e.g. spinach, collard greens, kale, endive, parsley, romaine lettuce, arugula, chard, bok choy, celery, etc.). The sweetness of the fruit overrides the flavor imparted by the greens. She determined that greens are extraordinarily nutritious yet Americans eat way less than we should and that when we cook them we kill off many of the important enzymes essential for proper digestion which works against optimal assimilation. In her book she chronicled the many health benefits people achieved by drinking green smoothies. One must wonder though what sort of insulin response one gets from a high fructose load and if the fiber from the greens is able to attenuate it. That's a subject for another day.

In a day when old age often comes with coronary artery stenting, knee and hip replacement surgery, mental illness and other degenerative diseases it will be interesting to see if green smoothies become more popular.

Oh yeah, this is not medical advice. See a physician for that. Your personal one.

Copays and Communism

Health Care insurers are now considering eliminating co-pays for a subset of meds that when taken consistently as directed help to ward off future high-cost trips to the hospital. The thinking being that if the co-pay is free then compliance will go up.

In Cuba all health care is free, surgery included. Then again, Cuban Ob-Gyn specialists only pull in just shy of $30 (U.S.) a month. What sort of students would American universities attract if the future promises such a paltry salary.

Cuba's communism is apparently an inescapable blueprint for many Americans. When all care is fully subsidized the quality drops and access diminishes.

Vick and Bling

The media is flummoxed over Atlanta Falcon quarterback Michael Vick's inability to "clean up his act" in light of the bling owner Arthur Blank has agreed to pay him for his football-related services. Bad behavior is at its core an outworking of sin, which is not generally ameliorated by large sums of money. And if money works in a temporal sense it still fails to remove the penalty for sin. America loves to play the money card because it's a convenient excuse when evading the sin card.

Friday, May 04, 2007

Unification of Church and State

The "Ten Commandments" for today’s American public schools

I. Thou shalt have any god before thee
II. Thou mayest have idols, especially American and/or Immunity
III. Thou mayest take the name of the Lord in vain, a protected right of the First Amendment, including phrases such as, “Oh, my God!”
IV. Observe the Sabbath Day by having it Your way
V. Be honored by your Mother and Father
VI. Notwithstanding abortion, thou shalt not murder, especially capital punishment
VII. Thou shalt not commit adultery with anyone underage, unless you think you can get away with it
VIII. Thou shalt not steal unless it’s necessary per your personal world view
IX. Thou shalt not bear false witness, notwithstanding You Tube videos and instances wherein one needs to do such to protect their hide
X. Thou shalt not covet, nothwithstanding persons or things that improve your self-image and sense of narcissistic well-being.