20 Years of Global Migration—in One Chart

Geographers have used census data from 150 countries to map human traffic over time.

by Nick Stockton

It’s no secret that the world’s population is on the move, but it’s rare to get a glimpse of where that flow is happening. In a study released Friday in Science, a team of geographers used data snapshots to create a broad analysis of global migrations over 20 years.

The study was conducted by three geographic researchers from the Wittgenstein Centre for Demography and Global Human Capital in Vienna. The researchers presented their data in five-year increments, from 1990 to 2010. Their research is unique, because it turned static census counts from over 150 countries into a dynamic flow of human traffic.

Migration data is counted in two ways: Stock and flow. “The stocks are the number of migrants living in a country,” says Nikola Sander, one of the study’s authors. Stock is relatively easy to get—you just count who is in the country at a given point of time. Flow is trickier. It’s the rate of human traffic over time…

more…

http://www.theatlantic.com/international/archive/2014/03/20-years-of-global-migration-in-one-chart/359793/

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The Surprising Failures of 12 Steps

How a pseudoscientific, religious organization birthed the most trusted method of addiction treatment

by Jake Flanagin

Say you’ve been diagnosed with a serious, life-altering illness or psychological condition. In lieu of medication, psychotherapy, or a combination thereof, your doctor prescribes nightly meetings with a group of similarly afflicted individuals, and a set of 12 non-medical guidelines for recovery, half of which require direct appeals to God. What would you do?

Especially to nontheists, the concept of “asking God to remove defects of character” can feel anachronistic. But it is the sixth step in the 12 Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous—the prototype of 12-step facilitation (TSF), the almost universally accepted standard for addiction-recovery in America today.

From its origins in the treatment of alcoholism, TSF is now applied to over 300 addictions and psychological disorders: drug-use, of course (Narcotics Anonymous), but also smoking, sex and pornography addictions, social anxiety, kleptomania, overeating, compulsive spending, problem-gambling, even “workaholism.”

Although AA does not keep membership records—the idea being pretty antithetical to the whole “anonymity” thing—the organization estimates that as of January 2013, more than 1 million Americans regularly attended meetings with one of roughly 60,000 groups. Dr. Lance Dodes, a recently retired professor of psychiatry at Harvard Medical School, estimates about 5 million individuals attend one or more meetings in a given year. Indeed the 12-step empire is vast, but Dodes thinks it’s an empire built on shaky foundations.

In his new book, released today, The Sober Truth: Debunking the Bad Science Behind 12-Step Programs and the Rehab Industry (co-written with Zachary Dodes), he casts a critical eye on 12-step hegemony; dissecting the history, philosophy, and ultimate efficacy of TSF, lending special scrutiny to its flagship program.

“Peer reviewed studies peg the success rate of AA somewhere between five and 10 percent,” writes Dodes. “About one of every 15 people who enter these programs is able to become and stay sober.”

This contrasts with AA’s self-reported figures: A 2007 internal survey found that 33 percent of members said they had been sober for more than a decade. Twelve percent claimed sobriety for five to 10 years, 24 percent were sober for one to five years, and 31 percent were sober for under a year. Of course, those don’t take into account the large number of alcoholics who never make it through their first year of meetings, subsequently never completing the 12 steps (the definition of success, by AA’s standards).

A report published by Alcoholism Treatment Quarterly in 2000 analyzed AA membership surveys taken from 1968 through 1996. On average, 81 percent of newcomers stopped attending meetings within the first month. After 90 days, only 10 percent remained. That figure was halved after a full year.

Additionally, there’s AA’s barefaced religious affiliations to consider. True, the 12 steps have been worded in such a way as to suggest a certain amount of leeway in which God (or “higher power”) one ultimately surrenders to; but AA is a self-identified Christian organization with a significant portion of its methodology rooted in prayer. As it says in AA’s founding literature, known as the Big Book, “To some people we need not, and probably should not, emphasize the spiritual feature on our first approach. We might prejudice them. At the moment we are trying to put our lives in order. But this is not an end in itself. Our real purpose is to fit ourselves to be of maximum service to God.”

So how did AA gain such a place of privilege in American health-culture? How did a regimen so overtly religious in nature, with a 31 percent success rate at best, a five to 10 percent success rate at worst, and a five percent overall retention rate become the most trusted method of addiction-treatment in the country, and arguably the world? It’s a central question Dodes seeks to answer in The Sober Truth. And he begins at the very beginning…

more…

http://www.theatlantic.com/health/archive/2014/03/the-surprising-failures-of-12-steps/284616/

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Has a plague already arrived? 205 Americans die each day after acquiring superbug hospital infections

Friday, March 28, 2014
by Mike Adams

(NaturalNews) If a jumbo jet crashed into the ocean every single day, it would roughly equal the number of Americans who die each day following superbug infections acquired at U.S. hospitals. Far from being some hyped-up scare story, that’s actually the conclusion of none other than the CDC, which has now publicly warned that 1 in 25 hospital patients gets infected and tens of thousands die each year.

“On any given day, 1 in 25 hospital patients has at least one healthcare-associated infection,” reports the CDC newsroom.(1)

“The CDC’s 2011 survey of 183 hospitals showed that an estimated 648,000 patients nationwide suffered 721,000 infections, and 75,000 of them died,” reports the Washington Post.(2)

If you do the math, that comes out to 205 deaths per day, on average, in U.S. hospitals.

Keep in mind that if terrorists were killing 205 Americans per day, every news network in the country would cover the story 24/7. If airplane crashes were killing 205 Americans per day, it would be headline news everywhere, and if vitamins were killing even just 1 person a day, the entire government would be calling to “ban all vitamins!”

But when hospital superbug infections result in the deaths of 205 Americans per day, it is simply another statistic and not treated as a national emergency. Somehow, the annual death of 75,000 Americans is considered “business as usual” in a sick-care system that virtually everyone considers a disastrous failure.

A hospital is one of the most dangerous places you can go in America

What these numbers prove is that a hospital is a very dangerous place. Simply entering the hospital for a seemingly routine surgical procedure can result in your death. I personally know of many people who entered the hospital to undergo elective, non-emergency surgery and then never came out alive.

And who is the most likely person to infect you in a hospital? Your doctor, of course. The very people who claim to be state-licensed authorities on all things related to health are actually carriers of deadly disease who routinely (and inadvertently) infect new patients with extremely dangerous microbes. They don’t do this on purpose, of course, but neither do they take the precautions necessary to prevent it.

Hand washing practices, for example are routinely ignored by most medical staff. In fact, a study commissioned by the licensing body for U.S. hospitals found that poor sanitation practices by hospital staff kills 247 patients each day across America. The study found “that doctors and nurses washed their hands only 30 to 70 percent of the time that they entered or exited a patient’s room.”

Doctors and hospitals refuse to embrace colloidal silver, antimicrobial copper, or medicinal herbs

By definition, “superbugs” like c. diff are completely resistant to modern antibiotic drugs. All of Big Pharma’s chemicals are useless against them. And because conventional medicine completely disregards the antibacterial power of colloidal silver, copper, garlic or antibacterial herbs, patients are never given those treatment options. As a result, a superbug infection almost always means death when you’re in the hospital. This is a case where the ignorance of conventional medicine can literally get you killed.

As it turns out, doctors and hospitals have no clue how to stop superbug infections, so they leave patients to die. And they die by the hundreds each day: over 200 daily in the United States alone. The CDC isn’t even trying to hide this statistic. They’re claiming, in fact, that they are “making progress” on this front when in truth they have already lost the war.

The era of chemical antibiotics is over

The great failure of modern medicine is that it invented and unleashed the vehicle of our own medical self destruction: antibiotics. These patented chemicals were once heralded as “miraculous cures” but have now thrust humanity to the brink of medical self-destruction. Soon, a simple infection entering your body from a minor scrape or cut may prove deadly, with doctors having run out of prescription chemical weapons to use against it…

Learn more: http://www.naturalnews.com/044494_superbug_infections_hospitals_modern_plague.html#ixzz2xHWY1KJG

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What Makes Us Human? Scientists Come One Step Closer To ‘Creating’ A Human Being

By Chris Carrington

Being very interested in all things scientific I am always amazed by the massive leaps and bound in science and technology that seem to be gathering pace as time moves on. Having said that, every so often I see something, that upon closer scrutiny makes me wonder where it’s all going and what the outcome will be for us mere mortals. This article is about one such development.

Scientists have for decades wanted to find a way where they can actually ‘see’ the damage done to our internal organs by toxins that range from drugs to air pollution. Evidence from autopsy and cadaver studies show the links between toxins and human health but often, such study does not show why it happens, it doesn’t show the mechanisms that causes the reactions.

From Science Daily:

Significant progress toward creating “homo minutus” — a benchtop human — was reported at the Society of Toxicology meeting on Mar. 26 in Phoenix.

The advance — successful development and analysis of a liver human organ construct that responds to exposure to a toxic chemical much like a real liver — was described in a presentation by John Wikswo, the Gordon A. Cain University Professor and Director of the Vanderbilt Institute for Integrative Biosystems Research and Education (VIIBRE) at Vanderbilt University.

The achievement is the first result from a five-year, $19 million multi­ institutional effort led by Rashi Iyer, senior scientist at Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL), and Wikswo. The project is developing four interconnected human organ constructs — liver, heart, lung and kidney — that are based on a highly miniaturized platform nicknamed ATHENA (Advanced Tissue-engineered Human Ectypal Network Analyzer). The project is supported by the Defense Threat Reduction Agency. Similar programs to create smaller, so-called organs-on-chips are underway at the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency and the National Institutes of Health. You can read the rest of the article here.
Now I realize that these are at this point only constructs, but, and there’s always a but, how far will such technology go?…

more…
http://redicecreations.com/article.php?id=29554

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Israel shut embassies to store nukes: Gordon Duff

Recent closure of Israeli embassies across the world has been a scenario by Tel Aviv to store nuclear weapons in its diplomatic facilities, a political analyst says.

In an article published on Press TV website, Gordon Duff stated that the unprecedented closure of the Israeli embassies “may well be true” but some would “cite the long-time rumor that Israel has stored nuclear weapons in all her embassies.”

Duff also alleged that satellite-based sensors have detected Special Nuclear Material (SNM) at Israeli embassies and consular facilities.

“There is, in fact, a ‘war plan’ that includes simultaneous assaults on the worldwide embassy/consular facilities of a TBD (To Be Determined) nation in case of ‘special circumstances,’” Duff wrote.

The analyst argued that the closures bring to mind the infamous “Samson Option” plan, which says Israel must be prepared to “take down the world” if threatened.

Unprecedented general strike by Israeli diplomats over their wage and working conditions, which has closed all the 102 Israeli missions abroad, has been the first since 1948.

The Israeli regime is widely believed to be the sole possessor of a nuclear arsenal in the Middle East with more than 200 undeclared nuclear warheads.

Tel Aviv has rejected global calls to join the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) and does not allow international inspectors to observe its controversial nuclear program.

http://www.presstv.ir/detail/2014/03/28/356361/israel-shut-embassies-to-store-nukes/

 

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Cancer patient jailed for late payment on $5 dog license renewal

Ann Musser was arrested at her home for allegedly not paying a $5 dog license.  (Source: Mass Live)

(Source: Mass Live)

 HOLYOKE, MA — A sick woman found herself shackled and locked in a cage — all stemming back to a $5 late fee to the government.

In Massachusetts, freedom is so abridged that even simple things like owning a pet require paid permission from the government. Its so onerous that in some municipalities, there are multiple licenses required. Such is the case in Holyoke, where dog owners must pay for permission from both the state and the city — every year.

But asking for permission to own her 14-year-old dog, Pumpkin, for another year was not exactly a high priority for Ann Musser, 41. Musser had been “fighting death” ever since she developed cancer. She recently underwent massive abdominal surgery for ovarian cancer and been trying to survive a regimen of harsh drugs.

She admits that she forgot about the license fee, according to The Republican. In her bouts with sickness, she went for a prolonged period without opening her mail. Musser also failed to see any additional notices of her unpaid renewal application.

As a policy, the licensing bureaucrats wait 21 days, and then turn the un-permitted pet owners over to the District Court. Musser became one of them.

Afterwards, Ann and her husband got caught up on their mail, and paid the extortionists the $5 they demanded plus a $25 late fee.

But it didn’t matter. There was an outstanding warrant hanging over her head. She attempted to see a judge to clear it. She was forced to wait in a long line among many other people in a crowded courthouse, receiving no special treatment for being gravely ill. She felt that her frail health was actually being put in jeopardy due to the stress and germs. Musser has a weakened immune system caused by the toxic chemotherapeutic drugs, and has been directed by doctors to avoid crowds. She decided that 3 hours of waiting was all she could handle…

more…

http://www.blacklistednews.com/Cancer_patient_jailed_for_late_payment_on_%245_dog_license_renewal/34081/0/0/0/Y/M.html

 

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Cast-off wife of Saudi king begs Obama to help free her four starving daughters who’ve been ‘locked away in a palace for 13 years’

Better days: Alanoud AlFayez, a former princess married to Saudi Arabia's King Abdullah, says their daughters have been held in a Saudi Arabia palace against their will for 13 years. This undated picture shows sisters Sahar, Maha, Hala and Jawaher when they were children. They are now in their 30s and 40s

Better days: Alanoud AlFayez, a former princess married to Saudi Arabia’s King Abdullah, says their daughters have been held in a Saudi Arabia palace against their will for 13 years. This undated picture shows sisters Sahar, Maha, Hala and Jawaher when they were children. They are now in their 30s and 40s

.Alanoud AlFayez, 57, appealed to Obama on Thursday as he prepares to visit Saudi Arabia and King Abdullah
.AlFayez was once married to the king but fled to London after he divorced her in 2003
.The women and their mother say they’re being starved and physically and psychologically abused

By Joshua Gardner

A cast-off wife of Saudi Arabia’s billionaire king has appealed to Barack Obama for help freeing the four adult daughters she says have been held in a Saudi royal palace against their will for over a decade.

Alanoud AlFayez, 57, made her public plea to the president on Thursday, just a day before he is scheduled to visit King Abdullah for just the second time.

‘Mr Obama should take this opportunity to address these grave violations committed against my daughters,’ said AlFayez.

AlFayez, who has lived in London since Abdullah divorced her in 2003, said her ex-husband’s treatment of their daughters has worsened lately after 13 years in confinement.

She told AFP that their already rare trips outside to buy food and medicine for themselves and their pets have now stopped.

‘Since 13 years, my daughters Sahar, Maha, Hala and Jawaher are being held captive,’ AlFayez said. ‘They need to be saved and released immediately.’

AlFayez has written to the UN’s Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights to say that her daughters are ‘imprisoned, held against their will, cut off from the world’…

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2591253/Cast-wife-Saudi-king-begs-Obama-help-free-four-starving-daughters-whove-locked-away-palace-13-years.html#ixzz2xHJaOZz5

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