Author Archive | susie

Yet another benefit from global warming

Happy oyster day! In honor of this day we are running Beau Soleil oysters on the half shell with orange-sriracha granite #nationaloysterday #beausoleiloysters #oysters #georgiaseagrill #instafood #instayum

Fortunately for me, I don’t like oysters. But this is not a good sign:

But new research published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences shows that the warming waters may hold an additional danger: Changed temperatures are leading to increases in a bacteria called Vibrio, which can cause fatal illness in people who eat shellfish or swim in ocean waters.

Vibrio is probably little known to most Americans, though it has caused major outbreaks in European coastal cities. But the bacteria is what lies behind the old advice to only eat oysters in months with an r in the name—that is, not in summer. Vibrio burgeons in warmer water. It collects in shellfish such as oysters when they filter water while feeding and then makes people ill when they eat the shellfish raw. It can also cause grave infections if it gets into a wound or a nick in the skin.

Which is a good place to add this from Paul Krugman:

It’s interesting to ask why climate denial has become not just acceptable but essentially required within the G.O.P. Yes, the fossil-fuel sector is a big donor to the party. But the vehemence of the hostility to climate science seems disproportionate even so; bear in mind that, for example, at this point there are fewer than 60,000 coal miners, that is, less than 0.05 percent of the work force. What’s happening, I suspect, is that climate denial has become a sort of badge of right-wing identity, above and beyond the still-operative motive of rewarding donors.

In any case, this election is likely to be decisive for the climate, one way or another. President Obama has made some serious moves to address global warming, and there’s every reason to believe that Hillary Clinton would continue this push — using executive action if she faced a hostile Congress. Given the technological breakthroughs of the last few years, this push might just be enough to avert disaster. Donald Trump, on the other hand, would do everything in his power to trash the planet, with the enthusiastic support of his party. So which will it be? Stay tuned.

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Cher stumping for Hillz is the best thing you’ll see today

https://youtu.be/y6DL8bAEv1w

If I could turn back tiiiiiiiiiime, If I could find a wayyyyyyy How about something nice to distract you from the never-ending spectacle of Donald Trump failing his way toward November 8? There was some kind of foo foo gay fundraiser for Hillary Clinton in Provincetown, Massachusetts, where the foo foo gays go to foo foo… Continue Reading →

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Trump’s new ad is the worst general election ‘dog whistle’ in nearly 30 years

Trump's Stance On Undocumented Immigrants

Donald Trump’s last stand is – like everything Trump has done since he birthered his way into conservative politics – all about winning over white people. Even his recent, sour attempts to win over black voters by trafficking in offensive racial stereotypes to white audiences in white suburbs are about getting the 62 percent or so… Continue Reading →

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Our patent system is broken

Fármacos

Patents were originally granted as an incentive to inventors. Now it’s all gone terribly wrong:

The cost of dozens of brand-name drugs have nearly doubled in just the past five years. Public outrage over drug prices extends from Capitol Hill to the presidential candidates to patients. In response, pharmaceutical executives are spending more on lobbying and marketing. Yet for all this attention, most of the proposed solutions for reducing prescription drug costs—tougher negotiations, appeals for transparent R&D costs or investigations into insurers—miss one of the primary sources of the problem: the way we award patents.

Today, too many drug makers receive patents for unmerited and unjust reasons. Take, for example, the hepatitis C drug Harvoni®, which has one the largest sticker prices despite its origins in previously published information and compounds. In the last year, China and Ukraine have rejected patents for sofosbuvir, the base compound for Harvoni, on the grounds that it doesn’t deserve a patent. Or, take Baraclude, a hepatitis B drug made by Bristol-Myers Squibb whose lowest known price in the U.S. a few years ago was $15,100. In a successful patent challenge that went all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court in 2015, the generic drug maker Teva showed that the patent claim on the base compound in the brand name drug was invalid—which then allowed Teva to go on to offer a generic version for half the cost in the U.S. and for as low as $427 in the developing world by other companies.

While TV ads and sticker-shock pricing by major corporations would have us believe that every new drug they roll out is a breakthrough invention, the reality is that they are often playing games with the lax standards in the U.S. patent system.

In its current form, the TPP attempts to “fix” this problem by … imposing the same patent practices onto other countries.

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