Woman Doctor 1   
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          LordAbnevWorks from Twitter Massive Following and 5 Tips for Healthy Eating While Traveling   
Healthy eating while traveling is an ever growing issue for many people as more and more meals are eaten away from home. Unfortunately eating out and on the road can be very challenging if you are not prepared. Here are 5 tips to help you stay lean and healthy while traveling.

1. Always go low carb Restaurant and packaged foods are always loaded with extra hidden carbs. Always choose the lower carb options when eating out avoid traditional snack foods, breads, pasta dishes, etc. Stick to lean meats and vegetables when eating out.

2. Tell them not to bring it, A bread basket, French fries, or a side of potato chips are standard for many restaurant meals. Do not temp yourself just ask your server not to bring it to the table or with your meal.

3. Know what you are going to eat, When traveling it is best to have some snacks with you and when you go out to eat have a general idea of what you are going to order. You will be less likely to be swayed by tempting calorie filled menu options.

4. Have a back up - Nothing is worse than being stuck in the car or in an airport with nothing to eat. You will get hungry and end up making bad choices. There is nothing else around I guess I will have to eat the steak and cheese. Keep a couple protein bars with you for back up. They travel well and do not spoil. You just need to beware that the protein bars you are eating aren't loaded with sugar. Check the label for sugar content. Make sure it has less than 30gram of total carbohydrates. Your protein bar should also have at least 20 gram of protein otherwise it is not a protein bar - it is most likely a sugar laden bar!

5. Don Eat! Seriously. This one is not for everyone. If you are someone that uses intermittent fasting to lose weight then you can follow fasting expert Brad Pilons lead and plan your fasts while you are traveling. Brad once told me that whenever he has to fly he always arranges it to be during a fast so he is not tempted by awful travel food.

You can use some of these tips or use them all! Whatever you do, do not let traveling be your excuse for not staying lean and healthy.

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          Marvel Cosmic   
My fave adventure books from the classic Marvel Super-Heroes RPG was the cosmic series - Cosmos Cubed, Ragnarok and Roll and Left Hand of Eternity.
Probably one of the biggest reasons I developed a fondness for Marvel's cosmic characters.

There are stats in the books but there were no cards, which would've been pretty cool.
So here are some I put together for the game.
The books, and the core rules, can be downloaded from ClassicMarvelForever.

          Sci-Fi Gaming Resources -Updated   

Note: Sadly, the best resource, Solo Nexus, has been removed from solo players.

The Yahoo Groups appear to still be out there somewhere. I'm still getting e-mails from them. However, it looks like Yahoo's changed their links and I haven't gotten them updated, yet. Here's the updated list of links, with several new ones-

Traveller at Mongoose Publishing
Mongoose Traveller resources at RPGNow
Spica Publishing Resources for Traveller at RPGNow
All Traveller resources at RPGNow
Mongoose's Signs & Portents Magazine at RPGNow
Freelance Traveller
Into the Deep
The Journal of the Travellers' Aid Society
Far Future Enterprises -has a nice guide to Understanding Traveller
Spica Publishing
SFRPG Message Board
Random Traveller System Generator
Traveller: Heaven & Earth -great world building software
Travelling Alone -nice optional solo Traveller flowchart
How to make a Traveller Sandbox

Shadowrun resources at RPGNow
Elektra for Shadowrun
Sci-Fi resources at RPGNow
Alternity resources
Star Smuggler resources
Star Frontiersman
Marvel-Phile & Other Marvel Dragon Magazine Articles
Seventh Sanctum -lots of random generators
Paper Friends -printable character standups for every genre

D6 Space
D6 Adventure
D6 Fantasy
Polgarus Games D6 Resources
Star Wars D6 Holcron
Random Star Wars D6 System Generator
Star Wars D6 Community on G+
Into the Shadows

Mythic/Solo Play
Shaun's Solo Traveller

MGT-Aids · Fan Aids for Mongoose Pub's Traveller
Guide to Traveller UPP (Universal Planetary Profile)
DC Heroes - Blood of Heroes - M.E.G.S. Yahoo group
Doctor Who Solitaire Story Game
Mythic Fan Club/Resources
Solo Nexus

          Doctor Caught On Hidden Cam How Examine Weird Way Pain in Law Back Of Sexy Patient   
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          Teen And School Doctor Busted In Very Embarrassing Situation By Principal And Professor   
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          Bush's Bulge   

DENVER—An exchange Monday morning between two reporters on the Bush press bus: Q: "What do you think about the lump on his back?" A: "Probably benign."

Da-dum-crash. The reporter's response was meant as a joke, but it's a fair assessment of the attitude of the White House press corps toward the run of stories on the strange rectangular shape seen beneath Bush's suit jacket during the first presidential debate. Some reporters argue that the rectangle is an optical illusion, while others think there just isn't enough evidence of anything for a story. My take: Lefty bloggers are undermining their case by making the huge, completely unsupported leap that Bush was wearing an earpiece wired into an audio box on his back. If Bush is Karl Rove's Rupert Jee, why was his debate performance so miserable? White House communications director Dan Bartlett insinuated as much in Spin Alley after the second debate. A reporter said to him, Bush didn't repeat himself as much as he did last week. What changed? Bartlett's tongue-in-cheek reply: "The guy who was speaking into the audio box—did you hear? He had an audio box in the first one—kept repeating the things to tell him to say, so he kept repeating them."

But just because some conspiracy theorists—some of whom were peddling the same theory four years ago—are making assertions that aren't supported by the evidence doesn't mean that the weird rectangular shape under Bush's coat doesn't exist. If you suspect the still images from the debate have been doctored, watching the video will erase your doubts. Let's go to the tape: Click here to open the video of the debate posted on the Web site of the Washington Post. Right-click on the video to open it in a separate RealPlayer window. Fast-forward to the 14:55 mark, and you'll see the mysterious rectangle.

What is it? I haven't the faintest clue. But I do think it's a legitimate topic of discussion. Umbrella Man didn't shoot John F. Kennedy, but that doesn't mean there wasn't an Umbrella Man. And just because conspiracy theorists are wrong about JFK doesn't mean his assassination isn't worthy of inquiry.

How many electoral votes does the AFC West get? Denver Broncos football coach Mike Shanahan appeared with Bush and Gen. Tommy Franks at a rally Monday at the Red Rocks Amphitheatre near Morrison, Colo. Earlier this year, Bush visited the Wisconsin training camp of the Kansas City Chiefs, a divisional rival of the Broncos. Chiefs head coach Dick Vermeil was asked whether he would welcome Kerry to visit his training camp, too. Vermeil's answer: "Not necessarily." The two other coaches in the division, Marty Schottenheimer and Norv Turner, coach in the safe Democratic state of California, so maybe Bush doesn't care about their votes.

Which Terrorist Is Kerry? Part 2: Mike Pesca of Day to Day dug up a "run but can't hide" quote by President Bush that I missed during my weekend search of White House transcripts. Here's the president on Feb. 5, 2002, in Pittsburgh, on the subject of Osama Bin Laden: "There's no cave deep enough for him to hide. He can run and he thinks he can hide, but we're not going to give up."

          Looking Backward   

MANKATO, Minn.—After watching President Bush speak for only a couple of hours on the 2004 stump, it's easy to see the main tenets of his re-election campaign: My opponent is un-American, or at least less American than me and you. My opponent, much like Al Gore, doesn't know who he is. My opponent is a tax-hiking, big-government liberal. Worse, he wants to ask other countries for permission for America to defend itself against its enemies. Last, and most important, my wife is better than his wife.

What you don't hear from President Bush's stump speech, or from his surrogates, is what he plans to do were he given another four years as president. The problem is particularly glaring on matters of foreign policy. There are glimmers of a domestic agenda in the president's two campaign events Wednesday: He wants to reform America's high schools, increase math and science education, and increase the use of the Internet in schools. He wants more ethanol subsidies. He wants to make health care more available and affordable. He wants less regulation. He likes community colleges. He wants workers to be able to acquire flex time and comp time in lieu of overtime pay.

Bush also gives his audiences a rehash of the greatest hits from his 2000 campaign mantras. He likes tort reform and dislikes "frivolous lawsuits." (A favorite line of Bush crowds: "You cannot be pro-patient and pro-doctor and pro-trial lawyer at the same time. You have to choose. My opponent made his choice, and he put him on the ticket.") He wants private Social Security accounts for younger workers. He likes marriage and the family, which always gets him a big cheer, because what it really means is he's against gay marriage. He's for a "culture of life," "judges who faithfully interpret the law instead of legislating from the bench," and a "culture of responsibility." Not to mention the responsibility society and the ownership society. He's still against the soft bigotry of low expectations. And of course, he wants everyone to love their neighbor just like you'd like to be loved yourself.

Bush doesn't talk much about the future. He talks about the past. The biggest portions of Bush's speech are spent mounting a vigorous defense of his presidency. When Bush's campaign foundered in New Hampshire four years ago, he retooled his strategy in response to John McCain and began billing himself as a "reformer with results." He's not using that slogan yet, but the rhetoric is similar. "It's not enough to advocate reform," he says. "You have to be able to get it done." The closing section of his speech ends with the mantra, "Results matter." On education, health care, the economy, farms, and security, Bush concludes by saying, "Results matter." Of his Medicare prescription drug benefit, Bush says, "Leaders in both political parties had promised prescription drug coverage for years. We got the job done."

Bush spends the longest amount of time defending his policies after Sept. 11. He takes credit for the creation of the Homeland Security Department (one of those things that Bush voted against before he voted for it), and he takes pride in the Patriot Act. Afghanistan has gone from being the "home base of al-Qaida" to being a "rising democracy." Pakistan, once a "safe transit point for terrorists," is now an ally. Saudi Arabia, he says, "is taking the fight to al-Qaida." Libya has given up its quest for weapons of mass destruction.

Most of all, Bush defends the war in Iraq. He repeats the litany of reasons for going to war: Saddam was defying the will of the United Nations, he harbored terrorists, he funded suicide bombers, he used weapons of mass destruction against his own people. "In other words, we saw a threat," Bush says. "Members of the United States Congress from both political parties, including my opponent, looked at the intelligence and came to the same conclusion."

What Bush doesn't acknowledge is what went wrong: The WMD were never found. We weren't welcomed as liberators. Oil revenues haven't paid for the war. It wasn't a cakewalk. What went wrong? Why? Given four more years, what does Bush plan to do about it? He hasn't told us yet, other than suggesting "more of the same."

"Every incumbent who asks for your vote has got to answer one central question, and that's 'Why?'" Bush says. "Why should the American people give me the high privilege of serving as your president for four more years?" The answer Bush gives to that question is his record. He says he deserves re-election because of what he has already done. At Wednesday's first event, in Davenport, Iowa, U.S. Rep. Jim Nussle embodies this attitude when he introduces Bush to the crowd. "There is no one I would have wanted to be at the helm of this country these last four years than you," Nussle says.

Bush and Nussle are asking the wrong question. The real question an incumbent faces is, what now? What's next? So far, Bush isn't telling. A president's record matters, but the reason it matters is because it has predictive value. Bush's defenders say he is a transformational figure, that he's willing to take on big problems and challenges. Wouldn't you like to know what Bush believes those big problems and challenges would be in foreign policy over the next four years? Are there gathering threats that, like Iraq, he thinks need to be tackled "before they materialize"? The president says that is the lesson of Sept. 11, that the nation must confront its security problems pre-emptively. Where else does he plan to apply that lesson? Does he plan to tell us?

After the 2002 midterm elections, when Treasury Secretary Paul O'Neill objected to another round of tax cuts for the rich, Vice President Cheney told O'Neill to discard his worries. We won the midterm elections, Cheney said. "This is our due." As much as liberals dislike President Bush's record over the past four years, it's the prospect of another four years that terrifies them. What they want to know—what keeps them awake at night—is what President Bush hasn't answered yet: What are you going to do next? This time, what will be your due?

          The Second-Place Candidate   

BEDFORD, N.H.—When I last saw Wesley Clark, I called him "Howard Dean with flags." Since then, he's reinvented his candidacy and made himself an even bigger threat to the former Vermont governor. He's now Howard Dean with flags and tax cuts.

Clark seems pretty close to emerging as the consensus pick for the only realistic non-Dean candidate. By sitting on the sidelines during the various Dean-Kerry, Dean-Gephardt, Dean-Lieberman, and Dean-"Insert Democratic candidate here" scraps, it appears that Clark's benefited from the "Dean vs. the Washington Democrats" infighting. He's in a statistical tie with Dean in a national poll. And by camping out in New Hampshire while everyone else makes a two-week sprint toward Iowa, Clark hopes to rise even further in the Granite State polls, too. (To be fair, not everyone is in Iowa. Joe Lieberman is spending a good deal of time in New Hampshire. But Clark strategist Chris Lehane rightly says that Lieberman is like "Bruce Willis in The Sixth Sense: He's dead and doesn't know it yet.")

For Dean, Clark poses a slight problem because the general can't be painted with the same brush as Edwards, Gephardt, Kerry, and Lieberman. He's not a "Washington Democrat." He didn't vote for No Child Left Behind. He didn't vote for the Iraq resolution. The question for Clark is whether he will emulate Bill Clinton as the Comeback Kid, turning a potential second-place New Hampshire finish into an expectations victory, or whether he's just the voters' Fallback Guy. After all, the usual sad lot of the first runner-up is to sit around and vainly hope that the reigning Miss America won't be able to fulfill her duties. (Of course, there is always that chance that Howard Dean posed naked somewhere … never mind.)

As a candidate, Clark has improved his skills dramatically since I watched him speak in September. He's smoother, more coherent, and more concise. He's also willing to give voters at least mildly unpopular answers. At a "house party" on Tuesday (the first of several days that I'm going to be following Clark in New Hampshire), Clark tells a man concerned about job losses, "We'll probably never bring back the specific manufacturing jobs that have left." He doesn't rule out means-testing Medicare, though he does say that he's predisposed against it. (My favorite fudge on the subject: "I'm against means-testing as a matter of principle, insofar as it's at all practical.") The house is filled with physicians worried about medical malpractice suits, but Clark states his opposition to "arbitrary caps" on legal damages. "The court system really is important for ordinary Americans," he says. "The truth is if you're a poor person in this country or a person of modest means, the only way you can get legal advice is on a contingent-fee basis."

Despite the widely held belief that Clark is the candidate of Clintonian moderates while Dean is the candidate of the so-called "angry left," I don't see much evidence that voters at Clark events are more centrist or less liberal than voters I've seen elsewhere. (Exhibit A: A reporter walks up to a man in scrubs at the house party. "You're a doctor?" he asks. "An abortion provider!" is the cheery response.) At a town-hall meeting Tuesday night, one of Clark's biggest applause lines is his pledge to raise taxes on people who make more than $200,000 a year: "We're gonna ask them to be patriotic. We're gonna take back the Bush tax cuts."

But what really endears him to the crowd is his indictment of President Bush during the run-up to war. After outlining the Clark plan for Iraq—1) withdraw Paul Bremer; 2) put a non-American in charge; 3) place U.S. forces under NATO; 4) allow a rapid turnover of the country to Iraqis, "long before this July 1 date"; 5) don't let the Kurds keep their weapons, and don't give them an autonomous region—Clark mentions his Monday night appearance on MSNBC's Hardball. Chris Matthews was obsessed with Clinton's impeachment, Clark says. It's all he would ask him about. "We wasted millions of dollars and years in this country trying to find something that Bill and Hillary Clinton did wrong. And it was a waste of money and effort," Clark says. "I'd like to know why the United States Congress and this party is not demanding, every single day, an investigation into why the president of the United States misused the intelligence community, took us to a war we didn't have to fight, and still won't tell the American people the truth! That's what should be investigated! That's the truth!"

The candidate is angry, his voice rises, and the crowd leaps to its feet. It's Clark's best moment of a pretty good day. He's got them, I think, as the crowd presses around him for autographs and picture-taking. But I also can't help but think that Howard Dean would have had them on their feet from the start.

          Reputable Doctor Did Not Stop On Masturbation In Her Office While She Used A Patient As A Sex Toy   
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          Pervert School Doctor Caught On Spycam Giving Full Body Inspection   
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          Trump-Supporting Doctor On MSNBC Says The NRA Is The Solution To Health Care   
Dr. Alieta Eck drew ridicule from MSNBC host Stephanie Ruhle on Wednesday by suggesting that the way to give Americans better health care was to allow people to buy insurance through the National Rifle Association . During a discussion with a panel of doctors who support President Donald Trump's effort to "repeal and replace Obamacare," Ruhle asked Eck how legislation could improve the health care system.
          Comment on THE POSITIVE MINDSET by Heidi   
I am in desperate disparity, my Fibramialga, osteoarthritis, dds, anxiety, and depression has gotten more than the best of me.. Please oh my good God help me through these troubling times. Sometimes it's hard for me to even get out of bed. I know He has a plan for me. Please help by showing me the way, giving me miracles in my financial situation, so that I may have the financial way to see my doctors and specialist that I need for healing. I pray that you show me how special I am to you and my family and friends. I need you in my life,my mind and soul to guide me the right direction. Please oh Lord I give you my burdens and my pain and fear, I need you so badly in my life. I need you to take this depression and my anxiety, and turn them to joy and happiness. I ask you for peace in my life. I know Lord you have a reason for all of my burdens, please showait me the way. Help my friends and family to understand the things I have to face everyday. Watch over them, and keep Your loving arms around them and I. In Jesus holy name, I leave this in Your loving hands. AMEN!!
          Treatment for Hemorrhoids   
Treatment for Hemorrhoids - Is there are real cure for hemorrhoids?

Sadly we are living in a fast paced world which, although it has its good sides, it has its drawbacks as well. One of them is the fact that more and more people get hemorrhoids. This didn't use to be the case earlier on, but now, whenever I speak with a friend or relative or just someone that I met recently, and somehow the discussion invariably turns to the issue of hemorrhoids, or piles, as they are also called.

Some of the common things we all have is the fact that we eat junk food, which lacks valuable nutrients. We live more stressful lives, we are more tense than ever before and we are basically living very unhealthy lives. No wonder hemorrhoids flare up like mushrooms after rain!

Having hemorrhoids is humiliating as best and taboo to talk about in public at worst. No wonder since they are located in a very private part of our bodies. Many people sadly live a life struggling to overcome their hemorrhoidal problem and don't consult a doctor or try to find a good treatment for hemorrhoids, simply because they are ashamed. Whereas a proper hemorrhoid treatment should be used before they get a chance to become a real chronic condition for each of us.

Treatment for Hemorrhoids

Of course, the best option is prevention. Cure comes next. For example, if you are portly, you should limit your intake of large meals to reduce the clot. Reducing the junk food should be a regular part of our preventive measure to avoid getting hemorrhoids in the first place. Eating a diet full of fibers, meaning fruits and vegetables, whole wheat and salads is one of those things that should replace junk food right away.

Once you have hemorrhoids though, prevention is a moot point. This is where you need to find a good treatment for hemorrhoids which provide you not only a long lasting cure, but also instant relief. Just like with toothache, knowing that the dentist will eventually fix the tooth doesn't help us much when we are pacing the floor every night in utter pain. Instant relief is the first thing that anyone cares about, along with a proper hemorrhoid cure.

Truth is, there are several hemorrhoid cures, most of them are working great, but not all offer the best instant relief there is. Some, sadly, don't work at all. It is a bit difficult to figure out what works and what doesn't, and going through one treatment after the other for most of us is not a real option anyway. You need to find one cure that works best and stick with it.

Hemorrhoid Miracle is one of the best treatment for hemorrhoids there is out there at the moment. I have tried this cure and it works. It works because it is one of the most effective, fastest, natural cure for your problems without side effects and elaborate procedures that will take ages to get rid of your hemorrhoids.

How it all started

I actually came across this book quite by accident. Embarassingly enough, I was suffering from hemorrhoids for quite a while now, didn't even mention this to my partner, and one day I was down having a chat with the pharmacist (who is also my friend) at the pharmacy nearby. He offered me a chair and a coffee, and I wouldn't sit down. Eventually I poured out my soul to him and then he went behind the counter and handed me over a binded manual (was quite torn actually around the edges) and gave it to me to read. He told me if I don't find in this book a final cure for my hemorrhoids, I should be the only one that didn't get a proper treatment for hemorrhoids, because it really helped everybody else before me. I took the book with a skeptical face, but I said to myself, it can't get worse than that. If nothing else, it will be a great bedtime read to put me asleep.

Well, about a week later I returned the book to John, my pharmacist friend and showed him my own copy. I bought my book in the meantime as well, knowing that I have to return the other copy to John eventually. He asked me how did it go and offered me a chair. I sat down this time without any effort from my part.

I told him that after using only one of the cures from the book the bleeding stopped overnight and as I continued with that cure, I haven't had a bleeding 'bum' ever since. Couple that with a few other natural techniques from the book, I have to proudly say that my hemorrhoid is really shrunk. The pharmacist's eyes were smiling at me and with an 'I told you so' look on his face he just nodded and took his book from my hands and put it back behind the counter, no doubt waiting for the next person who will be plagued by the same problem.

Truths about Hemorrhoids

I did ask him one thing though. He is a pharmacist and yet, he hasn't tried to sell me on any creams or pills or anything else from his shop. He told me in confidence that most of these creams do not work, plain and simple. Or they do work short term and you have to keep going back and buy the expensive cream over and over again, as without it, hemorrhoids return. He is a very honest and honorable person and likes to do the right thing, not to sell people on creams and gels and the pharmaceutical companies want us to get dependant on.

I really hope you can use this information to get the proper treatment for hemorrhoids that you deserve. Also I hope that my story has inspired you to keep your own dog eared copy in a drawer and hand it out for freely to any friends who are struggling with hemorrhoids so they read through it and try the 'miracle' cures out for themselves. Once they find the treatment really works, they will buy their own copy and happily return yours.

Click here to visit the official website of the Hemorrhoid Miracle


“No es un pecado capital cometer un error de ortografía”

Su tesis de doctorado, dirigida por Jean Piaget en la Universidad de Ginebra, estableció un antes y un después en la enseñanza de la lectoescritura. Vino a la Argentina a presentar un innovador CD-Rom “Los niños piensan sobre la escritura”. Defiende el papel de los chicos en la enseñanza, y destaca la importancia de mantener el nivel sobre todo en la escuela pública. “porque los sectores más postergados no tienen otra instancia para hacer el despegue en la vida”.
Más info: http://www.pagina12.com.ar/diario/sociedad/3-26092.html

          BIOS Visitó nuestro instituto el 02 del septiembre para compartir inquietudes que nos enlazan desde la Ciencia Ecológica y la educación.   

Esta es una organización ecologista, trabaja en la defensa del ambiente, los derechos humanos y la difusión del conocimiento.Las áreas de trabajo específicas se centran en los impactos del modelo de crecimiento y sus impactos en el ambiente y la salud.Desarrollan campañas, promueven la legislación y generan material pedagógico y de prensa, en cuanto a los químicos peligrosos, agrotóxicos y modelo rural, salud y ambiente, problemática de la incineración y respeto a la diversidad biológica y cultural.
Mariela Kogan, miembro de dicha asociación, Doctora en Ciencias Biológicas con increíble sencillez y a través de diferentes soportes dejo circular inquietudes en el encuentro, vinculadas al medio ambiente, una responsabilidad compartida entre ciencia y educación que nos enlaza y convoca, una clara propuesta y recursos creativos para poder trabajar con los niños/as.
Nos presentó un video generado por BIOS y a partir de este una propuesta lúdica dejándonos un lazo a futuras consultas.


VIDEO: Para no caer en "El cuento de la buena soja"

          "La lectura no entusiasma a los chicos de hoy. ¿Acaso lo hacía en el pasado?"   
Entrevistada por Claudio Martyniuk. cmartyniuk@clarin.com

De la exigencia por memorizar en la Edad Media a la necesidad actual de manejar todos los soportes, leer es siempre una actividad que oscila entre el placer y los obstáculos. La escuela no es ajena a visiones tan extremas.
La historia de las tecnologías de escritura y lectura, así como de los soportes materiales de los textos, se entrelaza con la historia de la alfabetización. Y la lectura de ese pasado brinda una renovada comprensión del presente y de las tareas de la escuela ante un objeto clave de nuestra cultura: el libro. Sobre él descansa, ambiguamente, la pretensión civilizatoria. Anne-Marie Chartier es una especialista en la historia de las prácticas de enseñanza de la lectura y escritura reconocida internacionalmente. Visitó Buenos Aires para dictar un seminario en el posgrado en Lectura, escritura y educación de Flacso. En la Edad Media pocas personas sabían leer y accedían a los libros. En los conventos surgió la lectura silenciosa, interna. Esa innovación, ¿qué proyección tuvo?Fue muy importante porque instaló los gestos intelectuales del trabajo con los libros que se mantienen hasta hoy. Pero si bien instaló la lectura mental, moderna y muy rápida, hay una diferencia fundamental con la manera de leer actual: en el medioevo, leer era memorizar íntegramente los textos fundamentales, mientras que hoy lo que esperamos de la lectura mental es la extracción de las informaciones principales de un texto y no su memorización literal. Durante siglos se enseñó a los niños que leer era fijar la memoria literal de un texto. Y los saberes que eran considerados fundamentales para los niños eran los religiosos, los cuales son leídos, repetidos, cantados, recitados. El lugar donde hoy podemos encontrar este estilo de lectura es la poesía. La lectura de poesía nos da una idea de lo que era la lectura en la Edad Media.La minoritaria lectura de poesía en parte parece tener que ver con la falta de lectura en voz alta. ¿Es una pérdida irremediable?No. Felizmente existen los cantantes. El lugar donde nos vemos obligados a pensar la relación entre la voz y el texto son las canciones. En el espectáculo, también en la ópera, esa cuestión de la relación entre la voz y el texto no es algo residual. En la publicidad y en los medios modernos se integran imagen, texto y voz. Pienso que los medios audiovisuales, con las revoluciones de la imagen y el sonido, restituyeron a nuestra vida de lectores una tradición de lectura en voz alta que muestra que nuestra memoria fija las cosas con más fuerza cuando lee con todos nuestros sentidos, con la imagen, el texto y la voz.Sin embargo, la "Galaxia Gutenberg", centrada en el libro, parece desplazada por la imagen. La "Galaxia Gutenberg" perdió el mundo de la imagen y del color para entrar en un mundo en blanco y negro, un mundo gris. Ese descubrimiento extraordinario de la modernidad -la imprenta- en parte suprimió la riqueza de la tradición medieval que vinculaba imagen de color y texto. En la modernidad, la introducción de imágenes en el texto exigió un largo tiempo de trabajo tecnológico hasta llegar a insertar viñetas, pequeñas láminas en el interior de los libros. En la actualidad, reencontramos la riqueza estética medieval en textos que incluyen imágenes en color. La novedad es el sonido. Texto, imagen, color y sonido están conectados en los nuevos soportes tecnológicos.Pero es problemática la comprensión de las imágenes. El procesamiento de la imagen no es secuencial o lineal, como lo es el procesamiento del texto escrito, y hay interacciones entre las imágenes y el texto que no son fáciles de analizar. No hay un procedimiento de lectura de imágenes que pueda enseñarse como se enseña la alfabetización. Siento preocupación cuando se habla de leer imágenes o situaciones, como si la lectura fuera el paradigma de todo entendimiento. Es una metáfora: no se leen las imágenes, las imágenes se comprenden, se analizan, se perciben, se sienten. Decir que las leemos es una manera de hablar que obstaculiza. Las imágenes funcionan de la misma manera en diferentes culturas, y niños que no hablan el mismo idioma pueden comprender la misma imagen. Hay fenómenos que son específicos de la imagen. Yo puedo leer un libro del siglo XVIII con el sentimiento de que hay una continuidad entre esa escritura y la actual. Pero la forma en que están ilustrados los libros del siglo XVIII no tiene nada que ver con la ilustración de los libros actuales. Para la educación esto es un problema porque no hay tradición en la escuela de una cultura de la imagen que no sea una ilustración de lo escrito. En la escuela primero está lo escrito y la imagen aparece como un complemento para adornar, mientras que en la vida no es así.¿Sólo esa función cumple la ilustración en los libros escolares?Hay una evolución desde fines del siglo XIX, con la creación de la escuela republicana -con Sarmiento, aquí en Argentina, y Jules Ferry en Francia; la historia de la creación de la escuela republicana en Argentina y en Francia se parece mucho. En ella, lo prioritario es el texto y las imágenes están para fijar la memoria, utilizando también la emoción en la representación de los próceres de la patria. El libro de Héctor Rubén Cucuzza "Yo, argentino. La construcción de la Nación en los libros escolares (1873-1930)" muestra que ante los próceres que marcaron la historia -que es como la historia de los santos que marcaron la historia de la Iglesia- hay un relato mítico que necesita imágenes, porque ellas fijan la representación de los héroes que jalonan el relato del texto. También los textos de ciencias tienen imágenes.Pero es distinta la ilustración de esos libros escolares que quieren dar una idea del discurso científico con lecciones sobre el agua, el aire o la circulación de la sangre. Se ilustran con esquemas. Los chicos tienen que reproducir el esquema de circulación de la sangre, por ejemplo, mientras que no se les pide que dibujen al prócer. Hay una introducción al gesto científico de representación abstracta de la realidad, la que parece aportar una verdad invisible. En libros escolares muy simples aparece la representación de la variedad de los discursos que existen en el mundo científico. En geografía es el mapa, y en la escuela cada disciplina científica está marcada por un tipo de uso diferente de la articulación imagen-texto. La alianza imagen-texto funciona como un indicador disciplinario, y los chicos saben de inmediato, al abrir un libro, en qué disciplina están, aunque no sepan leer. La escuela encontró un medio muy eficaz para darles a los niños una clasificación de los saberes.¿Hoy los chicos no se entusiasman con la lectura?Parece que no, pero tampoco en el pasado, ¿no cree? En definitiva, habría que probar que la lectura no entusiasma a los chicos hoy y que los entusiasmaba ayer. No hay que mezclar los recuerdos nostálgicos de los amantes de los libros con la realidad de la generación anterior. Yo no tengo la sensación de que en la generación de mi abuela había entusiasmo por los libros. Existía mucha desconfianza respecto de los libros y cuando a las chicas les gustaba leer, se pensaba que eran malas amas de casa y madres y que perdían el tiempo. Había desconfianza hacia los libros en los sectores populares; los consideraban pasatiempo de ricos. Y la mayoría de la gente no leía, salvo el diario para saber las noticias locales y quiénes habían muerto, pero no se tenía la idea de que a uno le faltaba algo cuando no leía. Esto se ha olvidado. Se tiende a reconstruir el pasado con la cultura de las clases medias, que son las clases que enseñan. La extensión de la alfabetización, ¿generó más lectores?Se esperaba, con la generalización de la alfabetización y de los estudios prolongados, un aumento del número de personas que irían a bibliotecas, comprarían libros y leerían. Cuando eso se volvió posible -con los libros de bolsillo y los diarios accesibles- llegó la revolución tecnológica de la televisión y después Internet. ¿Y qué puede hacer la escuela en esa batalla?La escuela está tironeada por dos objetivos: existe para desarrollar una cultura general, científica y literaria, pero debe preparar a los chicos para el mercado de trabajo, algo que nunca antes había tenido que asumir. La cuestión del mercado laboral dependía de una formación profesional o de la demanda local, pero no era rol de la escuela preparar a los niños para oficios, simplemente porque la mayoría de los oficios no requería saber leer. En la actualidad, todos los oficios, aun los de bajo nivel de calificación, exigen el conocimiento de la lectura y la escritura. Un ejemplo: en los hoteles Accor, una cadena internacional, el personal de limpieza tiene un protocolo de 40 ítems para verificar. Cada vez que entran en una habitación, deben ver si funciona la luz, etc. Es una lista escrita y se debe tachar con una cruz. Una mujer que no sabe leer y escribir no puede ser mucama. Eso era impensable antes, cuando para las tareas manuales se requería fuerza de trabajo, no competencia de lectura. ¿Cómo afecta esto a los maestros?Los docentes no desean quedar sometidos a la demanda económica, pero saben que los chicos vienen a la escuela también con una expectativa de inserción social y de éxito en el mercado laboral. Esos imperativos económicos pesan y, como consecuencia, los imperativos culturales de la escuela quedan un poco como de lujo. Se duda: "¿Es necesaria la poesía en la escuela?" Esto trae un problema de identidad cultural en los docentes porque no eligieron la profesión con esa perspectiva.

Copyright Clarín, 2009.

          Un doctor sobre ruedas le atiende tras la pantalla...   
En el Centro Mdico de San Juan en Carmichael, California, el neurlogo Asad Chaudhary atiende a sus pacientes de la unidad de cuidados ... tags: atiendedoctorEEUUInvestigación_médicaNuevas_tecnologíaspantallaRobóticaUn doctor sobre ruedas le atiende tras la pantalla...
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          Spit Test May Reveal The Severity Of A Child's Concussion   
A little spit may help predict whether a child's concussion symptoms will subside in days or persist for weeks. A test that measures fragments of genetic material in saliva was nearly 90 percent accurate in identifying children and adolescents whose symptoms persisted for at least a month, a Penn State team told the Pediatric Academic Societies Meeting in San Francisco, Calif. In contrast, a concussion survey commonly used by doctors was right less than 70 percent of the time. If the experimental test pans out, "a pediatrician could collect saliva with a swab, send it off to the lab and then be able to call the family the next day," says Steven Hicks , an assistant professor of pediatrics at Penn State Hershey. Hicks helped develop the test and consults for a company that hopes to market concussion tests. A reliable test would help overcome a major obstacle in assessing and treating concussions, which affect more than one million children and adolescents in the U.S. each year. Many of
          Ketamine For Severe Depression: 'How Do You Not Offer This Drug To People?'   
Gerard Sanacora, a professor of psychiatry at Yale University, has treated hundreds of severely depressed patients with low doses of ketamine, an anesthetic and popular club drug that isn't approved for depression. This sort of "off-label" prescribing is legal. But Sanacora says other doctors sometimes ask him, "How can you be offering this to patients based on the limited amount of information that's out there and not knowing the potential long-term risk?" Sanacora has a simple answer. "If you have patients that are likely to seriously injure themselves or kill themselves within a short period of time, and they've tried the standard treatments, how do you not offer this treatment?" he says. More and more doctors seem to agree with Sanacora. Dozens of clinics now offer ketamine to patients with depression. And a survey of providers in the U.S. and Canada showed that "well over 3,000" patients have been treated so far, Sanacora says. A number of small studies have found that ketamine
          Survey shows demand still outstrips supply for doctorates in math education   

A survey of the job market for doctorates in mathematics education shows demand outstrips supply -- even after the recession.

          Assistant professor in the department of mathematical sciences   
Jian “Frank”
University or Institution: 
Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI)
Date Announced: 
Tuesday, September 6, 2011
Former Title: 
Post-doctoral fellow in statistics

          Assistant professor of the department of mathematical sciences   
University or Institution: 
Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI)
Date Announced: 
Tuesday, September 6, 2011
Former Title: 
Postdoctoral researcher in the department of neurobiology and anatomy

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          HidroEléctrica de Betania - Huila   


En 1949 una firma capitalina de ingenieros presenta los primeros estudios del proyecto de la represa de Betania y evaluaban sus costos en6 millones de pesos. La junta Centrales Eléctricas del Huila, prefirió seguir adelantando el proyecto de la planta hidroeléctrica del río Iquíra. 1954. El ingeniero Carlos Manrrique natural de Santa fe de Bogotá, gerente técnico de Centrales Eléctricas del Huila, recorre el departamento buscando posibilidades energéticas; y en el informe que hizo a la junta directiva expreso las condiciones especiales que ofrece el río Magdalena en diferentes sitios, pero en especial la Jagua llamada hoy Betania. En 1967 contratan nuevos estudios con la firma Salgado Piedrahita y Escallón del proyecto energético de Betania, pero no dio luz ninguna.  En 1971 - 7 de septiembre, el gobernador del Huila Hector Polanía Sánchez oficialmente informo a la junta Directiva de la Electrificadora las exclusivas posibilidades que se deban para buscar que el doctor Misael Pastrana Borrero, lograra la aprobación y financiación del proyecto de Betania. 30 de junio de 1981 se lleva a cabo la construcción de la represa y fue inaugurada el 4 de septiembre de 1987 por el presidente Virgilio Barco Vargas (Q.P.D).

Entre la dificultad que sé venia estuvo la desviación, hecho importante por que se trataba de detener el Magdalena y devolverlo por el río Yaguará y además enviarlo después por debajo de la montaña.

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          Re: The Silent Killer   
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          Day After Helena's Birthday Update   
The different stories that I heard about the "alleged shooter" on Redstone Arsenal in Huntsville, AL and getting more and more worried about my granddaughter being at the daycare near the scene that was cordoned off, the 6 pm news announced that no shooter was found.

My blood pressure had shot up when I went to the doctor after getting Helena. She did tell me that she heard an alarm and saw a lot of police officers in her building as they took the kids to a safe room. The teach...
          06/30/17: Defence of dissertation in the field of Biotechnology, Sanna Hokkanen   
"Antilipogenic Mechanism of Conjugated Linoleic Acid in Yeast".

The public examination of the doctoral dissertation of Sanna Hokkanen, M.Sc. (Tech.), will be held on 30 June, 2017, at noon at Aalto University School of Chemical Engineering.

The title of the defence is "Antilipogenic Mechanism of Conjugated Linoleic Acid in Yeast".

Opponent: Associate Professor A.I.P.M. (Toon) de Kroon, Utrecht University, the Netherlands

Supervising Professor: Alexander Frey

The defence takes place at Kemistintie 1, lecture hall Ke2.

          06/30/17: Defence of dissertation in the field of engineering design and production, vehicle engineering, András Kriston, M.Sc. (Eng.)   
What affects rubber frictional performance on ice?

The public examination of the doctoral dissertation of András Kriston, M.Sc. (Eng.)., will be held on 30 June 2017 at 12.00 at the Aalto University School of Engineering. The title of the dissertation is Micro contact analysis of rubber-ice interaction during frictional processes. The field of the dissertation is engineering design and production, vehicle engineering, rubber/ice friction.

The good frictional performance of rubber on ice heavily influences vehicles’ mobility at winter conditions. In this dissertation, a methodology chain was developed using various microscopical imaging techniques in order the reveal the main frictional mechanisms when tire tread rubber slides on ice. The studies presented in this thesis help to broaden our understanding in the physics of tire-ice contact.

By analyzing the ice surface at its post-sliding state, different kind of contact marks can be observed depending on simulated traffic conditions (i.e. ice surface contamination), rubber hardness and rubber surface roughness. The results showed that it is not possible to single out one specific frictional mechanism due to the complexity of the tribosystem. The friction can be low when the rubber compound is harder, or the ice surface temperature is higher resulting local melting spots, leading to more hydrodynamic friction. Contrary, when the rubber compound is soft enough, or the ice surface temperature is colder, the likelihood of melting is low thus other mechanisms like deforming ice surface asperities and ploughing by hard fillers in rubber are more dominant. Interestingly, it was observed that pre-melted ice layer always lubricates the contact surface.

To overcome on the difficulties of observing three-dimensional micro contact state when rubber is squeezed against different type of road surfaces, a new, micro-computed-tomography based method was proposed. As a result, it was seen that the contact area on ice-like flat road surface is governed by the deformation of the rubber surface asperities, while on a rough road surface the contact is driven by the bulk deformation of the rubber. The nature of the contact state influences the frictional mechanisms of rubber on road surfaces. The large variety of observed frictional and contact mechanisms indicates that all modern tire compound development needs to fulfil multiplicity of requirements. Optimizing dynamic stiffness of the rubber, a good control over the rubber surface roughness and improving the molecular level interactions, like adhesion, can improve the performance of tires on icy surfaces.

Opponent: Dr. Lasse Makkonen, VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland, Finland

Supervisor: Professor Kari Tammi, Aalto University, Finland

Advisors: Dr. Tibor Fülöp, Goodyear S.A., Luxembourg; Ari Tuononen, D.Sc.,Aalto University, Finland

Electronic dissertation: https://aaltodoc.aalto.fi/handle/123456789/26855

Contact information: András Kriston, andras.kriston@aalto.fi


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          08/09/17: Defence of dissertation in the field of Bioproduct Technology, Jiaqi Guo   
"Covalent Modification of Nanocellulose Towards Advanced Functional Materials".

The public examination of the doctoral dissertation of Jiaqi Guo will be held on 9 Augusta at noon Aalto University School of Chemical Engineering. The title of the defence is "Covalent Modification of Nanocellulose Towards Advanced Functional Materials".

Opponent: Prof. dr. ir. Wim Thielemans, KU Leuven, Campus Kulak Kortrijk, Belgia

Supervising Professor: Professor Orlando Rojas

Venue: Kemistintie 1, lecture hall Ke2.

          08/11/17: Defence of dissertation in the field of marine technology, maritime risk and safety, Arsham Mazaheri, M.Sc., MBA   
Utilizing embedded knowledge in maritime transportation system to manage the risk of ship grounding.

The public examination of the doctoral dissertation of Arsham Mazaheri, M.Sc., MBA), will be held on 11 August 2017 at 12.00 at the Aalto University School of Engineering. The title of the dissertation is A framework for evidence-based risk modeling of ship grounding. Field of the dissertation is marine technology, maritime risk and safety.

Ship grounding accident is one of the most severe threats to the maritime transportation, and thus to the global trade, since more than 80% of the global trade is done through sea transportation. Therefore, it is not surprising that outstanding number of research are conducted so far to model this type of maritime accident and reveal its mechanism. However, questions such as “to which degree such models are helpful for decision and policy makers to mitigate the associated risk”, or “how trustworthy are the results of such models” are still and will always be valid questions.   

This thesis is an attempt to shed some lights for such questions. In the first section of the thesis, a framework is proposed to model ship grounding accident using only the evidence in hand. The framework not only encourages to use primary (i.e. raw data and information with no secondary interpretation) and secondary (i.e. information and knowledge that have some level of secondary interpretation) source of evidence for constructing a risk model, but also proposes a method to clearly visualize the uncertainty level of each module of the constructed model. This way, the users of such model can use the results of each module of the model only if the uncertainty of that module is acceptable for them. In the second section, a model is constructed based on the proposed framework and by utilizing the embedded knowledge in ship grounding incident and accident reports as well as the expertise of sea-pilots. The aim of the constructed model and the provided uncertainty map of the model is to help the decision makers to find the riskiest scenarios for a ship grounding accident, and decide on the possible risk control measures to be in placed in order to mitigate the associated risk.

Opponent: Associate Professor Marcelo Ramos Martins, University of São Paulo (USP), Brazil

Supervisor: Professor Pentti Kujala, Aalto University School of Engineering, Department of Mechanical Engineering

Electronic dissertation: http://urn.fi/URN:ISBN:978-952-60-7478-8

Contact information: Arsham Mazaheri, arsham.mazaheri@aalto.fi

          08/18/17: Defence of dissertation in the field of Chemical Technology, Noora Kaisalo   
"Tar reforming in biomass gasification gas cleaning".

The public examination of the doctoral dissertation of Noora Kaisalo will be held on 18 August 2017 at noon at Aalto University School of Chemical Engineering. The title of the defence is "Tar reforming in biomass gasification gas cleaning".

Opponent: Prof. Dr. Tilman J. Schildhauer, Paul Scherrer Institut, Switzerland.

Supervising Professor: Professor Riikka Puurunen

Venue: Kemistintie 1, lecture hall Ke2.

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          09/08/17: Defence of dissertation in Organizational Communication, Anja Caspers   
Persuasive Trust Building in Oral Financial Presentations – An Analysis of a narrative Investor Relations genre

The doctoral dissertation of Anja Caspers, Diplom-Volkswirt, in the field of Organizational Communication "Persuasive Trust Building in Oral Financial Presentations – An Analysis of a narrative Investor Relations genre" will be publicly examined at the Aalto University School of Business on Friday, 8 September 2017.

The defence of dissertation will be held in the Chydenia building (address: Runeberginkatu 22-24, Helsinki, Finland), Saastamoinen Foundation Hall, H-324 (3rd floor), starting at 12 a.m.

Opponent: Associate Professor Irene Pollach, Business and Social Sciences, Aarhus University
Custos: Senior Research Fellow Leena Louhiala-Salminen, Aalto University School of Business

Further information:
Anja Caspers
tel. +358 40 589 0320

          Dr. Anthony Mazzarell | Rich Zeoli   

Rich Zeoli talks Doctors being to old to practice with Dr. Anthony Mazzarell

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          Deeper Than You Could Ever Know, or The Eternal Psychodrama   

The rabbit keeps digging. And digging. How far are you ready to go down?

I first began to follow this story when I heard about the drowning death of Jeff Buckley. I'm not sure why but the first thought that came into my head was that it had something to do with Elizabeth Fraser. 

I had no idea that all of this had been prophesied for years and years before, in ways that actually give me chills.

I had no idea that this was all closely following a very ancient script, for reasons I can't begin to wrap my head around. The symbolism is almost shockingly unambiguous, as we'll soon see.

I had no idea that a tragedy involving Chris Cornell, Jeff Buckley's close friend and posthumous spokesman, would take place on the banks of another river almost exactly 20 years later, a tragedy that seemed to follow a remarkably similar mythic script. And a tragedy that would seize the attention of millions all around the world.

And I most certainly had no idea twenty years ago that at the very same time police divers were scouring the muddy waters of the Wolf River Lagoon for Jeff Buckley's corpse a well-publicized reenactment of a mystery religion based on the drowning death of a revered ancient Egyptian god was being undertaken by an elite "secret society" just a few blocks away.

Yeah. That happened.

I'm still having trouble wrapping my head around that one too.


A reader asked a highly pertinent and perceptive question in the comments section of the previous post. It cuts to the heart of this extraordinarily unlikely mystery we're trying to crack here.
The thing that I keep asking is "why?" Why would spirits reenact this little passion play at all? Why with this small handful of singers and songwriters? It seems like a lot of effort, a lot of autistic attention to trivial details few would even notice - so where's the actual payoff for the Good Folk's effort? The only thing I can think up is that all the world's a play to them, but the dramatis personnae onstage never see more than a few glimpses of their lines before it's time for them to be spoken.
Why indeed? We're not talking about show biz superstars here, we're not talking about Benifer or Brangelina,  we're talking about two cult performers who never broke into the mainstream. 

We're talking about two very vulnerable souls whose supernatural gifts were balanced out by their struggles with their troubled upbringings and mental illness. But at the same time we're talking about two performers who could count the highest echelon of the music biz elite in their circle of apostles.

And we're talking about a love story whose tragic end was prophesied in a song that has garnered a staggering 48 million views on YouTube. Those people may not realize it but they've soaked all this in.

Which only makes sense because what we're actually seeing is a ritualistic reenactment of one of history's oldest love stories.

It's becoming increasingly well-known on the Internet that this song is about Jeff Buckley, though I think most people tend to underestimate how deep Fraser's obsession with the man really was. I don't think she ever got over it.

Buckley idolized Fraser, studied her, imitated her (the first time I heard Jeff Buckley- knowing nothing about him- I said to myself, "this guy sure sounds like he listens to a lot of Cocteau Twins records"). But when they met Fraser was in the middle of a serious- and painfully public- mental health crisis that would find her hospitalized twice within a year. 

Buckley brought color and excitement back into her life but he had far too many groupies chasing him to stay with an older woman who brought a lot of emotional baggage in tow. Plus, his star was rising and her band was in the process of winding down their long run.

The Wikipedia entry recites the almost-unimaginably eerie fact that Fraser was recording this song while the man about whom she was singing was dying on the other side of the world, but omits the fact that they were lovers:
Fraser wrote the song's lyrics. While recording the song on 29 May 1997, she found out that her once-close friend, Jeff Buckley, had drowned. "That was so weird ... I'd got letters out and I was thinking about him. That song's kind of about him – that's how it feels to me anyway." 
And what most people tend to overlook is that not only is she singing about Buckley- yet again- she is also unconsciously prophesying his death. Yet again:

Night, night of matter (?)
Black flowers blossom
Fearless on my breath
Black flowers blossom
Fearless on my breath
Teardrop on the fire
Fearless on my breath

I have a problem with this interpretation of the lyrics. As far as I can tell what Fraser is actually singing is "Night, night of murder" not "matter." Which makes a lot more sense when followed by "black flowers blossom." 


Because black flowers have traditionally been associated with death and mourning:
The color black has always been synonymous with death and mourning. It is thus the color of sadness and farewell. So, many people consider black roses to symbolize bereavement, loss and mortality. They are often used at funerals. 
And then there's this couplet, which connects us to a constellation of ancient goddesses whose dramas all center on lost loves ( and one of whose incarnations is known as "the first mermaid").

Water is my eye
Most faithful mirror


Some of Fraser's most extraordinary vocal performances come when she is channeling the dramas of ancient mythologies. This of course includes the Siren but also Lorelei, Echo, Pandora (not just once but twice), Persephone and Coatlicue.

She was, after all, "the Voice of God."

But there's one particular story that she seemed to embody and that's the story of the goddess who fell in love with the young shepherd boy. It seemed to start in an oblique and incidental way:
The Cocteaux released Moon and the Melodies in late 1986, which featured 'Sea, Swallow Me' and 'She Will Destroy You', among others. Then they released Blue Bell Knoll, which again is a reference to an old folk belief about a death omen. The bluebell is also known as Endymion non-scriptus. 
Endymion is yet another doomed mortal whom a goddess fell in love with: 
 Wandering farther afield from the British Isles, the bluebell is associated with the shepherd boy Endymion.  The moon goddess, variously called Seline or Diana, fell in love with him and cast an eternal sleep on him so that she could enjoy his beauty alone, forever.
One of the key cuts on Blue Bell Knoll is 'For Phoebe Still a Baby'. Phoebe is another name for Selene.  
This story goes back to the very cradle of civilization:
In Babylonia, the month Tammuz was established in honor of the eponymous god Tammuz, who originated as a Sumerian shepherd-god, Dumuzid or Dumuzi, the consort of Inanna and, in his Akkadian form, the parallel consort of Ishtar.
Inanna and Dumuzi also seem to be the stars of one of the earliest known tellings of the Descent into the Underworld, where Inanna traveled to retrieve the soul of her lost shepherd-boy consort. This story would be told over and over again.

This story was retold in Phrygia as the myth of Cybele and Attis (note see Tracy Twyman's dissertation of this myth at her blog):
Cybele loved the beautiful shepherd, and made him her own priest on condition that he should preserve his chastity inviolate. Atys broke the covenant with a nymph, the daughter of the river-god Sangarius, and was thrown by the goddess into a state of madness, in which he unmanned himself. 
This story was told in the pages of Sir James Frazer's Golden Bough, a book Elizabeth Fraser certainly seemed to have read. A variant on the story has the hermaphroditic Agdistis in place of Cybele. Strangely enough this version also correlates to the Fraser-Buckley drama, given the Cocteau Twins' singer's own innate androgyny. As the singer explained in 1995:
"I was very worried about being unattractive because I think I look quite masculine. Sometimes I feel more masculine than feminine and I don't like it. I mean, you've got a person who is in recovery from incest surrounded by men. I've never had a highly developed sense of being female."
Fraser would refer obliquely to Cybele in one of her many songs focused around moths and butterflies, 'Great Spangled Fritilary', a butterfly whose scientific name is S Cybele.

The Greeks retold the love-goddess and shepherd-boy story as that of Aphrodite and the shepherd-boy Adonis:
(Both) Aphrodite and Persephone, goddess of fertility and death, love Adonis, a beautiful young man. Adonis is killed by a wild boar while he is on the hunt: Aphrodite begs Zeus to restore him to life, but Persephone also demands that he be brought back to life for her sake. Zeus settles the dispute by resurrecting Adonis, but commands him to live six months in the upper world with Aphrodite and six months in the lower world with Persephone.

And sure enough, just before she would meet Jeff Buckley, Elizabeth Fraser would be depicted rising from a scallop shell like Aphrodite in the music video for 'Bluebeard'. 

The Syrian version of this archetype, widely believed to be the original incarnation of Aphrodite herself, who takes us right back to the world of sirens and mermaids. The very first mermaid, or so the story goes:
Atargatis was in love with a human shepherd but accidentally killed him.  Out of guilt, the goddess flung herself into the ocean hoping to become a fish.  But her beauty was so great, that she never could fully become a fish.  Instead she became half goddess, half fish, with a tail below the waist and human body above the waist.   


...let's play the Name Game. You see this little mythology primer here isn't just for the giggles and grins, it cuts right to the core of the very strange daisy-chain of synchronicity we are trying to untangle.

Because Jeff Buckley's very surname means "shepherd boy."
Ó Buachalla, taken from the Irish word 'buachaill' originally meaning 'herdsman' (in modern Irish it has come to mean 'boy'), was anglcised early as Ó Boughelly, Boughla, Buhilly and later as Buckley. 
So you see I'm not exaggerating when I claim that what we're seeing here is a very ancient psychodrama that chose to play itself out in real time. I mean it literally. Do you understand me now?

And what about Liz Fraser? Well, given the Egyptian origin of the Biblical name (the first Elizabeth was connected to Moses and Aaron, both of which are native Egyptian names) I will go to my grave believing that in fact it comes from Eloah-Esi-Beth, or "Temple of the Goddess Isis." We'll get to Isis shortly.

But first the Fraser name, which ties into Knights Templar history, of all things:
The Frasers are believed to have come from Anjou in France. The name Fraser may be derived from Fredarius, Fresel or Freseau. Another suggestion is that the Frasers were a tribe in Roman Gaul, whose badge was a strawberry plant (fraisier in French). 
Might come from "fraisier." Gee, you think? 

But what's the significance of strawberries in this tale here? Well, it ties right back into the lineage of the same goddesses we're looking at. In this case the Syro-Roman variant:
The strawberry was a symbol for Venus, the Goddess of Love, because of its heart shapes and red color.
In a connection that will take on greater significance when we get to the next chapter of this drama, it so happens that Venus had a very Roswell kind of origin story:
In another story, told by Hyginus, an egg fell from the sky into the Euphrates, was rolled onto land by fish, doves settled on it and hatched it, and Venus, known as the Syrian goddess, came forth
Yeah, we're going there. But don't worry- it's baked right into the cake.

Yeah, those eyes. I know.

But of course the big kahuna of love-goddess and doomed shepherd myths is that of Isis and Osiris. In the best-known telling of the tale, Osiris' first death comes when he is drowned in the Nile inside his sarcophagus:
In some cases the texts suggest that Set takes the form of a wild animal, such as a crocodile or bull, to slay Osiris; in others they imply that Osiris's corpse is thrown in the water or that he is drowned. This latter tradition is the origin of the Egyptian belief that people who had drowned in the Nile were sacred.
And just to establish his shepherd cred:
 He also carries the crook and flail. The crook is thought to represent Osiris as a shepherd god. The symbolism of the flail is more uncertain with shepherds whip, fly-whisk, or association with the god Andjety of the ninth nome of Lower Egypt proposed.[12]
And as the fathomless enigmas of fate would have it, one of the foundation texts for the Isis-Osiris myth takes us back to- you guessed it- Memphis:
Another important source is the Memphite Theology, a religious narrative that includes an account of Osiris's death as well as the resolution of the dispute between Horus and Set. This narrative associates the kingship that Osiris and Horus represent with Ptah, the creator deity of Memphis. 
Quoting directly from the Memphite Theology, we have this:
Isis and Nepthys without delay, for Osiris had drowned in his water. Isis [and Nephthys] looked out, [beheld him and attended to him].  
OK, we have a river, a drowning and a Memphis. Can I shoehorn a wolf into this little catty-corner?

Oh, yes I can:
In the beginning, Osiris was associated mostly with agriculture. This cult spread rapidly into Upper Egypt, and soon Osiris became identified with the funeral god, Abydos, Khenti-Amentiu, who was symbolized by the wolf.  
But then we get thrown right down the crazy-stairs...

Oh, the eyes. Interesting.

While police divers were still dragging the Wolf River Harbor for Jeff Buckley's body, just a few blocks east the Grand Krewe of Osiris was enjoying the Carnival Memphis, kicking off at the Crosstown Concourse:
The Carnival Memphis Association organizes, plans, budgets, and promotes the King, Queen, and Royal Court, as well as many of the events staged during Carnival week. However, the Grand Krewes (once known as secret societies) also stage their own festivities throughout the year, elect their own royalty, manage their own budget, and have their own membership requirements.  
Most of these organizations bear Egyptian names in accordance to tradition originally set out by the Mystic Memphi, and in conjunction with Memphis being the sister city of ancient Memphis, Egypt. The twelve Grand Krewes that Carnival Memphis recognizes are the Mystic Society of the Memphi, Osiris, Sphinx, RaMet, Ennead, Phoenix, Aani, Ptolemy, Kemet Jubilee, Ptah, Luxor, Queen Bees.  
The Carnival kicks off the first weekend following Memorial Day. 

But what exactly is the Grand Krewe of Osiris? Well, besides the hosts of osirismemphis.com, that is?
Osiris was founded in 1934 as a Mystic Secret Society. Osiris membership has always consisted of top professional and business leaders. 
The Great Eye, the hieroglyphic symbol of Osiris for thousands of years, continues looking intently forward to the future of great city of Memphis, on the American Nile.
The Great Eye? You mean the one glowing in the middle of that giant pyramid you got there? The one on the shore of the Wolf River Lagoon? OK. Thanks.

Good, clean Masonic fun

And what exactly do their ceremonies entail?
The ceremonies were mysterious and symbolic, but the most common feature was the procession of Queen Isis in her carriage, far beyond the precincts of her temple on occasions to other towns. 
These occasions were passed amid great rejoicing, music, dancing, and feasting which formed important parts of the festival rites. 
The feast was held within lofty walls, with an entrance between immense pylons inscribed with hieroglyphs. 
Those called to join celebrated the regeneration of the land, the renewal of friendships, and the hopes for a productive and joyful year!

Is it just me or does this sound like something straight out of Summerisle? And how exactly do these ceremonies climax?
Our Queen Isis has always been known for her beauty and membership in a prominent family. She wears the Ring of Isis, engraved with her hieroglyphic symbol. 
The identity of King Osiris is revealed at the Banquet of Past Kings. He and all Past Osiris Kings wear the King’s Medallion on a scarlet and white ribbon at all Osiris and Carnival events.
OK, now I'm sure this is all fun and harmless and zany (totally Masonic) fun for the Memphite upper crust. But that doesn't matter in the context of ritual, especially the kind of ritual that goes beyond ritual. 

Because all this was going on while Jeff Buckley's body was floating a few blocks away in the Wolf River in the same exact way Osiris' body floated in the Nile.

You know Osiris-- the star-sailor. 

I said the Starsailor.

But again, the point is that happened. That actually happened. A bunch of drunk lawyers, doctors and their wives were playacting the mysteries of Isis and Osiris while an aspiring rock superstar was actually playing the part of Osiris in a ritual who I can't begin to imagine who -or more accurately, what -- was staging.

I mean, I never heard of this Carnival until a few hours ago. Have you?

What are the odds Elizabeth Fraser knew about any of this while she was writing songs that prophesy how a man she wouldn't meet for another 12 years would die? 

Somewhere between slim, zip and fuckall I'd wager.

But stay tuned because this story is about to take a very dark and sinister turn, taking us into the world of elite UFO cultists, the Tower of Babel, demons of the air, World War Three, and a prophecy of the most momentous event of our times.

I wish I were kidding.


          The Covenant and the Cargo Cult: Concluded   


Let's get this out of the way first - SPOILERS! Then this: Alien: Covenant is not a very good movie. 

It's not offensively terrible, in fact it goes out of its way to be as inoffensive as possible. Even the gore seems polite. 

I'd give you a synopsis but you can just as easily take all your favorite scenes from the Alien franchise, arrange them however you please, add in a cartoon villain whose motivations are entirely incomprehensible and then go fix yourself up some Jiffy Pop.

Alien: Covenant goes to great lengths to piss away the entire ontology proposed in the film it's meant to act as a sequel to, ostensibly annihilating the god-like Engineer race in a blink-and-you'll-miss-it CGI eruption that has all the heft and drama of a 80s video game. 

But at the same time it seems to tell a story beneath the surface narrative. And a lot of its riffs will be well familiar to anyone versed in Ancient Astronaut Theory. Which, let's face it, was arguably extraneous to the running plot of Prometheus (space mission finds remains of alien race mixed up with the xenomorph progenitors).

As Gordon and I discussed, it also feels like it meant to originally serve as the advance guard for a new AAT media blitz*, a plan that appears to have been scuttled in the wake of Hurricane Trump and the resultant cold (for the time being) civil war the country has been plunged into. 

I've never seen divide-and-rule politics as divisive as what we're seeing today, with the ostensible goal being to atomize the population into impotent, squabbling subsects in order to preempt any potential challenge to oligarchal rule, even if the oligarchy itself is itself carved up into mutually antagonistic camps. (I should mention here that this whole program seems to have fired up in the wake of the Occupy movements).

Of course there's also the fact that the easiest social grouping (tribe, country, empire, etc) to conquer is one that's divided against itself. 

Just saying.

But even this miserable turn of events seems to resonate with the AAT perspective as well, specifically the "gods at war" subplot running through Zecharia Sitchin's bibliography, as well as some of the theorizing emerging on the fringe science circuit.

Now, there's a strand of thinking among those who wrestle with the Fermi Paradox, essentially arguing that high technology is inherently anti-adaptive and inevitably leads to self-destruction. 

What this theory essentially proposes is that we've not had any (acknowledged) contact with extraterrestrial races because they've all been wiped out by their own advanced technology (read: 'weaponry'). This of course is a wildly egocentric assumption ("extraterrestrial races are all as savage and murderous as we are") and automatically presumes that our own high technology is not in fact some kind of alien intrusion, even if it behaves every bit like one.

I bring this up because there are two running themes in Alien: Covenant I do want to unpack, because they do (obliquely) reference some of the basic tenets of AAT (the film seems to keep a lot of its AAT on the DL).

First off is David's genocide of the Engineer planet. This was a fairly ridiculous subplot, essentially chucking everything we were told about these beings in the first film. This is a billions year-old race that seeded all life on Earth and yet they're all defeated by a lone android who had hijacked one of their spacecraft? Huh?

Wouldn't they naturally have some kind of defense infrastructure that would have intercepted this ship before it ever reached orbit? There's no attempt at following the story's own internal logic.

Now there are all kinds of ways you could have made sense of this. The Engineers had degenerated over the millennia and lost their high technology, that they'd become so drunk on their own power that they never expected any exterior challenge, etc etc etc. But the film makes absolutely no attempt to sell any of that.

But by the same token there's a fascinating allegory at work here, even if it's unintentional, and that ties back to the war of the gods theme running through a lot of AAT theorizing. 

Note that the Engineers aren't decked up in their Gigeresque finery in the apocalypse scene but look more like the kind of quasi-Medievals familiar to space fantasy fans. They also look pretty stupid gazing up at the approaching ship like the hapless New Agers in Mars Attacks. 

But were they in fact the Engineers? Some fans don't seem to think so.

A closer look at the (humanoid) aliens in the film may suggest that this in fact was another descendant race, the clue being the skintone (matte and pinkish as opposed to chalky white and moderately reflective). They also don't seem quite as black-eyed. Another clue is their reaction to the ship, arguably suggesting these people were expecting their gods to return.


Is this a fakeout or a reference to another covert subplot altogether? It's possible there was a revelation that this was just a descendant race in the original script but that all got lost in the rewriting process. 

Perhaps David's apparent plan to kill off the human colonists- who are both his progenitors and another descendant race- are the clue here. Either way, the story (mankind's cousins wiped out by a space invader) ties in pretty neatly with the theories put forth by plasma physicist Dr. John Brandenburg:
"Dr. Brandenburg has previously theorized that the red color of Mars and the radioactive substances in its soil are the result of a thermonuclear explosion from natural causes. He now says that the “high concentration” of Xenon-129 in the Martian atmosphere and uranium and thorium on the surface are remnants of two unnatural nuclear explosions, most likely triggered by alien invaders. 
"Who were these aliens invading and eventually wiping out? Brandenburg believes Mars once had a climate like Earth and was inhabited by two civilizations – one in a region called Cydonia Mensa and another at Galaxias Chaos. Why these two regions? 
'Analysis of new images from Odyssey, MRO and Mars Express orbiters now show strong evidence of eroded archeological objects at these sites.'
According to Brandenburg, the Martians maintained a high civilization, albeit a non-technological one:
He says Mars once had an Earth-like climate home to animal and plant life, and any intelligent life would have been about as advanced as the ancient Egyptians on Earth.
There's also David's genetic tinkering with the xenomorph genome. As a self-styled god, David here is playing the part suggested by AATheorists, who postulate that the Anunaki went through a series of experiments in creating the modern human genome and eradicated unwanted models while they did so. 

Strangely enough, this also correlates to the AAT-friendly origin myth put forth by the ancient Greek writer Hesiod in his landmark Works and Days. Hesiod, significantly, was apparently deeply influenced by Babylonian literature, the Enuma Elish in particular

And the war of the gods certainly correlates to the Titanomachy, or the wars between the Olympians and their progenitors, the Titans.

So is there an unspoken inference that David is the titular Prometheus, defying the "gods" and shepherding the engineered development of the xenomorph race? In the context of the film itself it's really hard to care one way or the other but it does suggest that there was in fact a lot more meat on the bone in previous drafts of the script.


But it's worth noting that the Alien franchise is not only another example of a major SF property that revolves around AAT it's also an example of a SF franchise onto which AAT was grafted midstream (at the same time it was grafted onto the Predator franchise). 

Some franchises have AAT baked into their genome at conception (Star Trek (more or less), the Space Odyssey series, Battlestar Galactica) but many more seem to have it implanted sometime into their runs (Quatermass, Doctor Who, X-Files, Indiana Jones, Transformers, Jonny Quest, Godzilla, Doom, Halo, Assassin's Creed). 

When the Olympics came to Hollywood

This raises a very simple question: why? Is there in fact a AAT cargo cult at work in the entertainment industry? I mean that sounds ridiculous, right? 

Well, maybe it seems a bit less so when you look at the influence the Nine had on the Star Trek franchise (relaunching on television this year) or the fact that one of the most powerful cults in Hollywood is explicitly AAT-oriented right down to its very core. There's also the Mormon Church, which is at the very least AAT-compatible.

On the other hand, there's also the Brookings Report. 
The report has become noted for one short section entitled "The implications of a discovery of extraterrestrial life", which examines the potential implications of such a discovery on public attitudes and values. The section briefly considers possible public reactions to some possible scenarios for the discovery of extraterrestrial life, stressing a need for further research in this area. It recommends continuing studies to determine the likely social impact of such a discovery and its effects on public attitudes…" 
One detail that caught the eye of researchers like Richard Hoagland is the mention of possible artifacts discovered on our neighbors, artifacts that might call our entire view of our planet and our very existence into question.
"While face-to-face meetings with it will not occur within the next twenty years (unless its technology is more advanced than ours, qualifying it to visit Earth), artifacts left at some point in time by these life forms might possibly be discovered through our space activities on the Moon, Mars, or Venus." 
And then there's this passage, which basically explains why so many STEM types are so deeply wounded by AAT:
"It has been speculated that, of all groups, scientists and engineers might be the most devastated by the discovery of relatively superior creatures, since these professions are most clearly associated with the mastery of nature, rather than with the understanding and expression of man. Advanced understanding of nature might vitiate all our theories at the very least, if not also require a culture and perhaps a brain inaccessible to Earth scientists."  

And the money quote: suggestions for how that eventuality- or some kind of alien contact- might be managed by the Managers.
Continuing studies to determine emotional and intellectual understanding and attitudes -- and successive alterations of them if any -- regarding the possibility and consequences of discovering intelligent extraterrestrial life. 
Historical and empirical studies of the behavior of peoples and their leaders when confronted with dramatic and unfamiliar events or social pressures. Such studies might help to provide programs for meeting and adjusting to the implications of such a discovery. Questions one might wish to answer by such studies would include: How might such information, under what circumstances, be presented to or withheld from the public for what ends?  
And lo and behold, 57 years after the Brookings Report we get this:
The solar system that humanity calls home may have once been inhabited by an extinct species of spacefaring aliens, a top scientist has suggested. 
A space scientist has suggested ancient extraterrestrials could have lived on Mars, Venus or even Earth before disappearing without a trace. 
In a fascinating academic paper about “prior indigenous technological species,” Jason T. Wright from Pennsylvania State University raised the fascinating possibility that evidence of these extinct aliens could exist somewhere in the solar system. 
Wright is an astronomer who received global attention after suggesting an “alien megastructure” had been spotted in orbit around a distant star.Now the stargazer has said advanced aliens may have left behind “technosignatures” for us to find — if only we knew where to look for them.
Of course, this is exactly what Richard Hoagland has been talking about- and has been roundly attacked for doing so- for at least the past 40 years. But I suppose it's different when the very same theorizing comes from within the priesthood.

It's funny; last night I was cutting the grass and thinking about stuff. You know, like you do when you're cutting the grass. Then I started mulling over how simplistic and repetitive the Ancient Aliens show is and how quickly Giorgio Tsoukalos transformed himself into a cartoon character. 

But then I realized that's how educational indoctrination works in our culture. 

All kinds of teaching and training materials in public schools use cartoon characters, right? Walt Disney probably made a fortune licensing his characters for educational films. And it's through repetition that people really learn anything. 

So Ancient Aliens might chew over the same gristle year after year but that helps keep its messaging consistent as its audience ebbs and flows (read: enters/graduates high school). Love it or loathe it, you have to acknowledge that there's a cogent methodology at work there. 

Government-conditioning program or cult indoctrination, they all work out of the same toolbox.

Is it all leading up to some major revelation, the way 'Disclosure' advocates expect? Or is all leading up to some massive Project Blue Beam type of hoax? 

Well,  why would anyone expect it to? Why would anyone expect the skies to open- or not- as the climax of all this conditioning? 

The answer, of course, is Hollywood. Because that's the way it works in the movies. Real life doesn't usually work that way. 

However, no matter who or what is behind all this the fact remains that, like it or don't, AAT (and the UFO topic in general) have already dramatically changed our culture, our technology and our society. Certainly our popular culture. 

Being a bit long in the tooth it still boggles my mind how many younger people take the basic assumptions of AAT for granted, even if they haven't read a page of Sitchin or Von Daniken or even watched a single Ancient Aliens. They don't have to. So much of their favorite pop culture is neck deep in it.

*You can toss in the Sekret Machines project here, spearheaded by former Blink 182 guitarist Tom Delonge and Peter Levenda of Necronomicon and Sinister Forces fame, and involving all kinds of Deep State heavies such as John Podesta.

          The Covenant and the Cargo Cult, Part 1   

Sir Ridley Scott's long-awaited prequel to Prometheus opened this week in certain countries and is set to open in America next week. For those waiting for a continuation of the storyline from the last movie- when crew member Elizabeth Shaw and the head of android David taking off to invade the Engineer homeworld- well, I hate to say it but you're out of luck. 

The Prometheus story is referenced only as exposition, apparently.  I hope I'm not giving away any spoilers (it feels like half the movie has already been posted to YouTube in the form of trailers and excerpts) but it is what it is.

Of course, the bit with Elizabeth and David's disembodied head from Prometheus is yet another one of those bizarre and inexplicable references to John the Baptist that tentpole sci-fi movies are so fond of. Remember that John's mother was named Elizabeth*, who had her own covenant with an extraterrestrial entity (the Archangel Gabriel, in this case). 

But I digress. If you've been following the previews and the various puff pieces in the media you'll suss out that Alien: Covenant is more like a remake of the first Alien film than a sequel to Prometheus. In much the same way as the JJ Abrams' Star Wars it's meant to act a jumping-on point for the Alien franchise for post-Millennials:
If Star Wars: The Force Awakens led the way in merging fan-service universe-building with fresh heroes, stories and themes for a new generation, Alien: Covenant grabs the reboot ball and runs with it. 
Director Sir Ridley Scott has said himself how much he was impressed by Disney's handling of Star Wars' renaissance, and it's clear to see why this similarly iconic '70s sci-fi world is equally ripe for a life-extending overhaul.
The film apparently references the AAT of Prometheus but also taps into the current anxieties over AI and robots and their potential to do away with the rest of us, kind of like a more ambitious HAL 9000. Scott apparently 86'd the idea of more direct sequel to Prometheus after reading some of the negative reviews dumped on the film, which he called "a mistake":
What changed was the reaction to ‘Prometheus’, which was a pretty good ground zero reaction. It went straight up there, and we discovered from it that [the fans] were really frustrated. They wanted to see more of the original [monster] and I thought he was definitely cooked, with an orange in his mouth. So I thought: ‘Wow, OK, I’m wrong’.
Well, somebody thought Scott was wrong, "somebody" almost certainly being a Fox accountant or three. However, one SF fansite accused Scott of "selling out" by not following up on the Prometheus story and I'm sure a lot of other fans will disappointed the story was dispensed with so easily. Either way, Scott continues to make eyebrow-raising comments about aliens in the press, referring to them recently as "superior beings."
Alien creator Ridley Scott has said that he is convinced that there are extra-terrestrials out there – and one day they will come for us. The veteran director said he believed in higher beings as he prepared to release the sixth episode of the sci-fi horror series, Alien: Covenant, next month. 
“I believe in superior beings. I think it is certainly likely. An expert I was talking to at Nasa said to me, ‘Have you ever looked in the sky at night? You mean to tell me we are it?’ That’s ridiculous.” 
“So when you see a big thing in the sky, run for it,” he joked.“Because they are a lot smarter than we are, and if you are stupid enough to challenge them you will be taken out in three seconds.”
Which makes you wonder about the whole "Covenant" thing, doesn't it? 

The term is essentially religious ('contract' is more commonly used to describe written civil agreements), dating back to the Old Testament.  And seeing how that covenant was made with a god who flew around the sky in a pillar of smoke and light, and needed a special environment built in order to interact with his subjects, you do start to wonder what the implications of all this happen to be. 

Well, start with this. Like Jack Kirby (whose Eternals so inspired the first Alien film),  Scott seems to have been bitten by the ancient astronaut bug and bitten hard. I don't know what the current status is on the project but back in 2014 it was reported that Sir Scott was developing an AAT series for HBO called Pharaoh:
Scott has signed on to serve as the executive producer and director for this project, which was created and sold to the premium cable channel by David Schulner. The Hollywood Reporter explains: 
The drama explores an alternate explanation for the foundation and ascent of the ancient Egyptian empire — one in which greatness was bestowed upon us by beings from another world, calling into question what it means to be a “god.” The project was co-created by Giannina Facio and Colet Abedi, who will exec produce alongside Scott and David Zucker for Scott Free. 
His film Prometheus was partially inspired by the writings of Swiss author Erich von Daniken who is known for his books like Chariots of the Gods? and Gods From Outer Space. Von Daniken is also a regular talking head on History Channel’s Ancient Aliens.
Again, I'm not sure where Pharaoh stands today but according to an October report from Omni the project was still on. It may be why the planned Stargate reboot was reported as being put into turnaround in November. Which, if so, strikes me a bit curious. The mighty Devlin and Emmerich nosed off their turf by Sir Scott? Huh.

But there's an interesting little visual cue in one of the trailers that suggests that Scott takes AAT very seriously. The Covenant crew lands on an alien planet and discovers a familiar sight. From io9:
This alien planet that looks untouched by human hands is growing recognizable wheat, which very much has been touched by human hands. This plays into the Alien mythos that there was a race of “Engineers” that were the progenitors of humans—they’re similar to us, why wouldn’t their food be similar? And if they were traveling around, why wouldn’t they carry seeds like we do?
Why is wheat so significant in the context of the Prometheus teleology? The late Lloyd Pye explains: 
Many have "wild" predecessors that were apparently a starting point for the domesticated variety, but others--like many common vegetables--have no obvious precursors. But for those that do, such as wild grasses, grains and cereals, how they turned into wheat, barley, millet, rice, etc. is a profound mystery. 
No botanist can conclusively explain how wild plants gave rise to domesticated ones. The emphasis here is on "conclusively". Botanists have no trouble hypothesising elaborate scenarios in which Neolithic (New Stone Age) farmers somehow figured out how to hybridise wild grasses, grains and cereals, not unlike Gregor Mendel when he cross-bred pea plants to figure out the mechanics of genetic inheritance. It all sounds so simple and so logical, almost no one outside scientific circles ever examines it closely.
Modern wheat is one of those innovations that scientists revert to ontological arguments to explain. The wheat we know obviously exists so it simply had to have been the product of long-term domestication. How exactly the domestication of an essentially-inedible wild grass was domesticated into a modern foodcrop-- over the span of centuries, mind you, if not millennia-- by illiterate Stone Age farmers is never exactly made clear. Pye again:
 On the other hand, those New Stone Age farmers who were fresh out of their caves and only just beginning to turn soil for the first time (as the ”official” scenario goes), somehow managed to transform the wild grasses, grains and cereals growing around them into their domesticated ”cousins”. Is that possible? Only through a course in miracles! Actually, it requires countless miracles within two large categories of miracles.  
The seeds and grains were maddeningly small, like pepper flakes or salt crystals, which put them beyond the grasping and handling capacity of human fingers. They were also hard, like tiny nutshells, making it impossible to convert them to anything edible. Lastly, their chemistry was suited to nourishing animals, not humans. So wild varieties were entirely too small, entirely too tough and nutritionally inappropriate for humans. 
They needed to be greatly expanded in size, greatly softened in texture and overhauled at the molecular level–which would be an imposing challenge for modern botanists, much less Neolithic farmers.  
Despite the seeming impossibility of meeting those daunting objectives, modern botanists are confident the first sodbusters had all they needed to do it: time and patience. Over hundreds of generations of selective crossbreeding, they consciously directed the genetic transformation of the few dozen that would turn out to be most useful to humans. And how did they do it? By the astounding feat of doubling, tripling and quadrupling the number of chromosomes in the wild varieties! 
Domestic wheat and oats were elevated from an ancestor with seven chromosomes to their current 42–an expansion by a factor of six.”
Remember that the cultivation of wheat brought about the rise of the Sumerians, who had oddly intimate relationships with their gods (the Anunaki, of course). The ancient Greeks were certain that wheat was the gift of a god; Demeter, in this case. It was the final "mystery" in the dramas put on at Eleusis. The Egyptians credited wheat to Osiris, the star-sailor.  So its inclusion in this film hardly seems incidental. On the contrary; it looks as if someone were doing their homework.

Now, longtime readers of The Secret Sun realize that nearly every major SF franchise of the past 50 years (starting with 2001: A Space Odyssey) is centered around ancient astronaut theory in one way or the other. 

Star Trek, Doctor Who, Star Wars (arguably), Battlestar GalacticaAlien (of course), Stargate, The X-Files, Transformers, Indiana Jones and the entire Marvel and DC Universes all established their creation myths, in varying degrees, as the work of advanced extraterrestrial interlopers. Does that seem coincidental to you? It certainly does not to me.

There've also been a ton of less-visible but still-signficant TV shows and movies that have done the same, like Jonny Quest, The Phoenix, The Man from Atlantis as well as Childhood's End, Cocoon, Hangar 18, countless American and Japanese cartoons (even the hugely-popular cardgame/anime property Yu-Gi-Oh). So much so that you can't help but wonder if there's not a very powerful cargo cult at work behind the scenes in Tinseltown.

Bearing all that in mind, as well as the Ancient Aliens cable show (now in its 12th season), researchers might be forgiven for believing this was all part of some long-running conditioning program. You know, kind of like the one suggested by the Brookings Institution report back in 1960. 

Or exactly like it, actually.

Researchers would be especially forgiven in light of this recent blockbuster news story:
Was our solar system once home to an advanced civilization other than our own — perhaps one that predated humanity by hundreds of millions of years before being wiped out by an asteroid impact or some other cataclysm? 
There's no evidence for such a pre-human indigenous technological species, though people have been speculating about one since ancient times. But a respected space scientist points out in a provocative new paper that if the existence of home-grown intelligent space aliens has never been established, it's never been ruled out either. 
And if a race of smart and perhaps spacefaring aliens did make their home in our solar system, traces of their lost civilization might still be out there somewhere in the system just waiting for us to find them.
Quite a "synchronicity," don't you think?

UPDATE: Check out Gordon's review on Alien: Covenant on Rune Soup.


* Elizabeth is often traced to Elisheba but you can also frame it as a contraction of Eloah-Isis-Beth, or "House of Isis, the Goddess."

          Chaos Magic vs The Robot Revolution    

There are two divergent streams at work in the Idea-o-Sphere, currents that are not only divergent in size, strength and assumption, but are in fact antithetical. 

The most dominant, of course, is the imminent AI-Robot Revolution, which threatens to bring a very real apocalypse into our world if in fact it flowers as predicted (and isn't just a big scare to keep the peons from asking for raises). 

So we're hearing that not only truck drivers, widget drillers and burger flippers are at risk of imminent penury, so too are lawyers, doctors, accountants and all manner of other professionals whose livelihood is based in their capacity to process huge chunks of complicated data and subsequently make decisions and judgments that are useful to others who can't. 

Programmers- and AIs themselves- are currently working around the clock to fill the shoes of these well-paid professionals with cheap, off-the-shelf software programs that will reliably get that same cognitive work done at a tiny fraction of the cost.

Elon Musk is (ostensibly) so terrified of the AI Revolution he is planning to colonize Mars as a life-raft for the human race, who presumably will have to flee a Skynet/Terminator type scenario. That Mars is utterly incapable of supporting human life- at least at present- seems to be besides the point.

Jack Ma, the Chinese billionaire behind social media giant Alibaba, has suddenly turned Cassandra as well. Long a reliable source for corporate technohappytalk, Ma is suddenly warning of dark days ahead.
"In the next three decades, the world will experience far more pain than happiness," the billionaire said, adding that education systems must raise children to be more creative and curious or they will be ill-prepared for the future. 
Robots are quicker and more rational than humans, Ma said, and they don't get bogged down in emotions -- like getting angry at competitors.
Terrific. I was just thinking what the world needs now is more pain than happiness. But given his position as a Techno-Celestial, Ma couldn't serve up the medicine without at least a tiny spoonful of sugar:
But he expressed optimism that robots will make life better for humans in the long run. 
"Machines will do what human beings are incapable of doing," Ma said. "Machines will partner and cooperate with humans, rather than become mankind's biggest enemy."
"Make life better for humans in the long run," he says. Well, what exactly is "the long run?" Three decades is a long time- maybe even a lifetime- for that 99.99999999999% of the human race who aren't tech billionaires. Halfway through that painful three decades most of us aren't going to be thinking much about "the long run." 

And what exactly does "far more pain" imply? I'm not sure I want to know what Jack Ma's definition of pain actually means, given our disparate cultural contexts. 

It's here I begin to think back on last year's Lucifer's Technologies series (more accurately, Satan's Technologies) and wonder about where our modern electronic superstructure actually came from. Because that goes a long way in gleaning where it's actually going. 
Many have claimed that our present technology arose from contact with alien intelligences. Whether you believe that or not, one thing is certain; the rate of technological progress shot up like a rocket shortly after the end of World War II. 
And it must be said that technology seems more and more like an invasive-- or alien-- contagion, disrupting entire industries, economies, and communities.  
Now techno-utopians like Jaron Lanier and Douglas Rushkoff are techno-cassandaras, preaching a message of dislocation and social collapse.  
Look at it this way; steam engines had been known for almost 2000 years by the time the Industrial Revolution took hold, longer still if you consider prototypes. The Ancient Greeks knew them, they just didn't have any use for them. 
But the evolution from a computer that was was essentially the size of a suburban house and boasted the power of a pocket calculator to the working prototypes of the desktop, the Internet, computer animation, teleconferencing and nearly everything else we take for granted today took just a little more than two decades. 
An eyeblink of history.
For at least 5000 years-- five-hundred decades-- horse-drawn carriages and wooden ships with cloth or leather sails were the state of art in transportation technology. By contrast, we go from aeroplanes made of wood and canvas to the SR-71 Blackbird, a machine so advanced our best engineers today seem unable to match it*, in the space of four decades. 
In historical terms, this is as if your three year-old were in nursery school one day and then graduated from Harvard at the top of her class as soon as she turned four. There's simply no precedent for the high-tech explosion that began in the late 1940s... 
Yet no one stops to question how such a technology would arise so instantly, in historical terms. Go look at a book from the late 19th Century- hell, look at a children's book from that period- and tell me people weren't a hell of a lot smarter than they are today. Maybe even smarter than they were in the 1940s... 
Yet even the best and the very brightest were stymied by problems for decades, problems that seemed to solve themselves, literally overnight, shortly after World War II.
We take it all for granted now, especially if you were born at a time when a Commodore 64 and an Atari console were part of your natural landscape. But in fact all of this technology is so anomalous, so disruptive, so improbable in the entirety of human history (never mind natural history) that it is in a very real sense alien, even if (on the offhand chance) it's not actually "alien."

Well, we've been over all of that before, haven't we? What about that other current?

In Our Gods Wear Spandex I argued that Spiritualism, Theosophy and the Occult Revival were reactions to the massive dislocations- physical, spiritual, psychic- incurred by the Industrial Revolution. It wasn't unusual for the sensitives of the time- see Blake, William, to see the rise of large-scale factories  as an invasion of Hell onto Earth. 

There was very good reason to do so; these were black, belching, smogpits filled with hazardous machinery and/or chemicals that ripped the folk up from communion with the Earth and into virtual (sometimes actual) prisons, in which their humanity was stripped away in service of industrial manufacturing.

In response to the dehumanizing effect of these hells, the sensitives of the time reached back into humanity's childhood (in the case of Spiritualism) or its adolescence (as with the Classically-oriented secret societies). And it could be argued that it worked- that we didn't entirely surrender to the regimented reality of the factory writ large, that Industrial political systems like Nazism and Communism were held at bay (at least in their original incarnation) and that individuality was held up as a social good. 

Well, at least until it was subverted as a tool for political atomization.

The counter-Industrial spiritual movements of the 19th Century weren't shy about co-opting the means of mass-production (in this case, industrial-scale publishing) to pursue their aims. And so it is with the new breed of Chaos magicians and their fellow travelers (I'm not sure if meme magic counts here), some of whom are themselves well-paid Skynet employees, many of whom are tech-savvy and nearly all of whom are plugged deep into the Grid. Becoming the ghost in the machine is the basic idea.

Magic, in this context, acts kind of like Jacques Vallee's "Control System." Things get too hot (or cold, depending on your own worldview) with technology and regimentation and Magic comes in and turns on the AC (or cranks up the woodstove, again according to your POV). 

Magic and its cousin Psi are erratic and unreliable for most people at most times but when the pressure comes down they become attractive alternatives to the crushing predictability of the Black Iron Prison. It may also, in the form of collective ritual, grow in popularity as a tonic against the  the paradoxical effect of social media to grow loneliness in Meatspace.
While it offers an easy way to keep in contact with friends — and meet new people through dating and friendship apps — technology's omnipresence encourages shallow conversations that can distract us from meaningful, real-life, interactions. 
Researchers at the University of Essex found that having a phone nearby, even if we don't check it, can be detrimental to our attempts at connecting with others. Smartphones have transformed post office lines from a chance for some small-talk with the neighbors to an exercise in email-checking, and sealed the fate of coffee shops as nothing more than places of mutual isolation. And technology will only become more ingrained in our lives.
The isolating, dehumanizing effect of technology may once again find its match in the ancient power of ritual, everything from lighting candles at a Catholic shrine to meth-fueled fuck-a-thons while drenched in pig's blood. The collapse of conventional social mores and the now-standard presumption that anything you do that isn't harming anyone else is your lifestyle choice will certainly push all this forward. 

Remember too that this same impulse popped up as a reaction to the hyper-rationalism of Classical Greece with the rise of the Mystery Cults.

Magic almost seems like Nature asserting herself in the face of an outside intervention. Its like the doggedly-persistent vines rising out of toxic soil and strangling the rusted girders of an abandoned factory. Or a stubborn strain of virus slashing its way through some futuristic megalopolis somewhere in the Pacific Rim. 

Or a solar flare frying all of our electronics for good in the blink of an eye.

Now I know it's extremely unfashionable these days to discuss such things, especially with most Chaos magicians, but you have to ask yourself, if computer technology is not an alien virus why does it behave exactly like one?  I don't know about you but it sure as hell sounds to me like Elon Musk believes it is, though he'd never say so publicly. 

Computer technology has already destroyed entire industries, disrupted entire societies, and changed every aspect of our lives in 70 short years? And now we're being told that it threatens to create an entire infrastructure that will make most of us obsolete? I don't know about you but it sure as Hell sounds an awful lot like Borg-assimilation, only on a frog-boiling schedule.

The question becomes if the host can fight off the infection, or at least learn to manage it and coexist with it. I can't begin to pretend I know the answer but it seems to me that reasserting our messy, chaotic humanity is probably a good place to start.

          The Cold War Kabuki   

Well, you all know what the big story was this past week. I wasn't going to post on it but enough people have asked and it seems germane to the ongoing Reality Show we're all unwitting (and unwilling) extras in. In case you've been on media blackout or a vision quest, here's a brief thumbnail sketch:
The United States launched a military strike Thursday on a Syrian government airbase in response to a chemical weapons attack that killed dozens of civilians earlier in the week. 
On President Donald Trump's orders, US warships launched 59 Tomahawk cruise missiles at the airbase that was home to the warplanes that carried out the chemical attacks, US officials said.
As it happens, the airstrikes apparently didn't even seem to have the desired deterrent effect. The air base was up and running soon after the strikes:
Syrian warplanes took off from the air base hit by US cruise missiles yesterday to carry out bombing raids on rebel-held areas, in a defiant show of strength. 
Just hours after the al-Shayrat airfield was bombed with 59 US Tomahawk cruise missiles fired from warships in the Mediterranean, aircraft struck targets in the eastern Homs countryside, according to a monitoring group. 
The airstrikes were carried out on Khan Sheikhoun - the same town Bashar al-Assad’s regime is accused of attacking with chemicals - and seven other towns around eastern Homs, some of which controlled by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (Isil).
This rebound seemed to catch the War Party off guard, since CNN reported on the same story but appeared to ascribe the airstrikes to phantom warplanes. I mean, it couldn't be the Syrians or the Russians, right?:
(CNN) New airstrikes targeted a town in Syria that was hit by a chemical attack earlier this week, activists said, less than a day after the US bombarded a Syrian air base to "send a message" to the Assad regime. 
It wasn't immediately clear who conducted the strikes on Khan Sheikhoun, which was hit on Friday and Saturday, though only Russian and Syrian regime aircraft have been bombing that area of rebel-held Idlib province.
CNN, who've been hammering Trump around the clock since he humiliated their network head in a post-election tantrum, suddenly changed their tune when he started raining bombs on Syria. Sam Kriss reports:
The media was kind to Trump’s attack on Syria. Every pompous outlet that has spent the last five months screaming incessantly about the threat to democracy, the inevitable deaths and the terror of wars, had nothing but applause as soon as the wars and the deaths actually got going. 
 A fleshy and dangerous idiot, a vulgarian, an imbecile – until those first perfect screaming shots of Tomahawk missiles being fired were broadcast – that’s our guy, you show them Donny! This is when, as Fareed Zakaria put it on CNN, Trump ‘became the president.’
The same mainstream media, which has become a hornet's hive of conspiracy theorizing since the election, was quick to shoot down any conspiracy theories about the Syria Bombshow.
A volley of US cruise missiles had barely been launched into Syria before the internet filled up with fact-free theories about the real reason for the international crisis.
A popular one on the right-most fringes: the US government actually carried out the chemical weapons massacre in Syria last week - a "false flag" to trick President Donald Trump into retaliating, thus entangling himself in a foreign war. 
A slightly more convoluted strain on the left: Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered the chemical weapons massacre to help Trump - distracting Americans from an investigation into Trump's campaign ties to Russia by provoking the missile strike.
Alt-left conspiracy theorists prefer the idea that Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered the chemical weapons massacre to help Trump - distracting Americans from an investigation into Trump's campaign ties to Russia.
Ron Paul, whose son Rand is now a rising star in the Senate, was perhaps the most prominent public figure to cast shade on the Syria op:
“Before this episode of possible gas exposure and who did what, things were going along reasonably well for the conditions,” the former Texas congressman stated. “Trump said let the Syrians decide who should run their country, and peace talks were making out, and Al Qaeda and ISIS were on the run.” 
“It looks like, maybe, somebody didn’t like that so there had to be an episode, and the blame now is we can’t let that happen because it looks like it might benefit Assad.”
For his part, Doctor Bones speculates that the real mark for a possible elaborate sting wasn't Assad or Putin, but in fact another player altogether. The timing seems hard to argue with:
A gas attack launched by the fleeing Syrian rebels, a side quickly losing it’s CIA-sponsorship and well aware it’s continued health depends on American funds, sure has a shit-ton more to gain from wide swathes of civilians dying on camera. Even better if they die particularly gruesomely and in a way the rebels claim they couldn’t be responsible for despite being photographed with all the tech to do so. 
How does Trump’s seemingly pointless explosion-show play into this? The answer: perfectly...
Consider also that the Chinese President was in Mar-a-Largo when the strike was underway, that Trump not only told him it was going to happen but actually ate dinner with him as it went on and the event spirals into even greater significance. A show of force full of technical prowess in a contested warzone while the Russians stood back and watched sends a powerful message to a foreign leader currently dining in enemy territory.
Is this just swivel-eyed speculation? Is there any reason to believe this wasn't all some improbable coincidence, that Xi Jinping was indeed dining with Trump while the Bombshow began? Because if it's not a coincidence then it's one hell of a psyop; running a mindfuck on your most dangerous frenemy during a state visit. What's this all about then? Joseph Farrell reports:
While there have been a spate of articles recently about growing Russo-Chinese defense and security ties, matching their growing financial and economic ties, this one left me stunned, for there was a statement within it that caught my eye, and Mr. B's as well, and I'm sure the reader saw it as well. As one can imagine, this one fueled my "high octane speculation" mode to the nth degree. Here's the statement, and a bit of surrounding context:
Russia and China are tired of Washington's "defensive" military installations in their backyards — and they're already taking action. 
According to the Atlantic Council and other responsible thinkers, the Untied States reserves the right to park its missile shields anywhere it wants, whether it be in Europe, East Asia, or the dark side of the Moon.  
I guess we should have seen all this coming, no? Shortly before the Bombshow, Trump's top Praetorian removed Trump's assumed consigliere from the NSC:
President Trump on Wednesday removed controversial White House chief strategist Stephen K. Bannon from the National Security Council, part of a sweeping staff reshuffling that elevated military, intelligence and Cabinet officials to greater roles on the council and left Bannon less directly involved in shaping the administration’s day-to-day national security policy. 
The restructuring reflects the growing influence of national security adviser H.R. McMaster, an Army three-star general who took over the post after retired general Michael Flynn was ousted in February and who is increasingly asserting himself over the flow of national security information in the White House. 
Do yourself a favor and set a news alert for "McMaster." That's a name you're going to be hearing more of in the days ahead. Or you won't. Which is probably the more troubling scenario.

And with Bannon off the NSC there's apparently an effort to shuffle him off to some fat-salaried thinktank glue factory.  The not-news of Bannon's interest in The Fourth Coming was dragged out yet again, this time by The New York Times. But the article planted a helpful hint of why Bannon is on the elbow list and might be giving us a grim preview of the year ahead:
Bannon’s Views Can Be Traced to a Book That Warns, ‘Winter Is Coming’

WASHINGTON — Stephen K. Bannon has read the book three times. He still keeps a copy of it — one that’s creased and copiously underlined — in a library with the rest of his favorites at his father’s house in Richmond, Va. 
The book, “The Fourth Turning,” a 1997 work by two amateur historians, Neil Howe and William Strauss, lays out a theory that American history unfurls in predictable, 80-year cycles of prosperity and catastrophe. And it foresees catastrophe right around the corner. 
It also leads to unavoidable questions about war and whether Mr. Bannon, who has recommended the book to countless friends and made a film about it in 2010, is resigned to catastrophic global conflict. He says he is not. 
And he remains unconvinced that the United States can effectively intervene in overseas conflicts like the one unfolding in Syria. As one of the voices in the administration who expressed skepticism about a military strike in response to the Assad regime’s chemical attack on its own citizens, Mr. Bannon insists he is no warmonger.
Well, there you have it.

Is the Syria proxy war threatening to heat up again, or is this all just another dance in the Cold War Kabuki? Have actions like the Bombshow  become like sacrificial actions in ongoing magical actions? Or is the real war is for your mind and is playing out in thousands of manufactured headlines, blizzards of 30 second videos with deceptive text crawls and the endless babbling of overpaid talking heads?

I feel stupid even asking the question.

Just in case you're worried that this is all leading to nukes raining down on American cities,  the cognitive warriors seem to be trying to defuse any expectations of impending Armageddon: 
White House national security adviser H.R. McMaster says that while the U.S. would push for regime change in Syria, “We’re not the ones who are going to effect that change.” 
“What we’re saying is, other countries have to ask themselves some hard questions,” McMaster said in an interview on "Fox News Sunday." “Russia should ask themselves, ‘What are we doing here?’ Why are we supporting this murderous regime that is committing mass murder of its own population and using the most heinous weapons available?’”
Translation: No way in Hell we have the readiness needed for a hot war with a military superpower.

And since the mindfuck is the mother's milk of Cog-War, the careful inoculation of mixed messages into the mediafeed becomes just as vital a weapon as a cruise missile. Scratch that- much, much more so.
Trump Administration Is Contradicting Itself On Regime Change In Syria 
The Trump administration appears divided on whether the U.S. is pursuing a policy of regime change in Syria, days after the first direct American military attack against the Syrian government. 
Thursday’s strike “was related solely to the most recent horrific use of chemical weapons,” Secretary of State Rex Tillerson told ABC News’ George Stephanopoulos on Sunday. The goal of the attack was to send a message to Syrian President Bashar Assad and its ally Russia that the U.S. wouldn’t tolerate the use of chemical weapons, he continued. “Other than that, there is no change to our military posture.”
But United Nations Ambassador Nikki Haley said there can be no peace in Syria with Assad in power. “There’s not any sort of option where a political solution is going to happen with Assad at the head of the regime,” she told CNN’s Jake Tapper on Sunday. “Regime change is something that we think is going to happen because all of the parties are going to see that Assad is not the leader that needs to be taking place for Syria.​”​
Though Haley stopped short of indicating the U.S. would take military action to overthrow the Syrian dictator, her comments reflect a sharp change from the administration’s previous position.
The difference here, of course, is that Tillerson sets and executes policy and Haley sits in a glorified debating society and blows smoke and fairy dust for a bunch of bored bureaucrats wishing they had their real government jobs back, the ones they enjoyed before being pushed upstairs to their present posts. The media only pays attention when bombs are falling.

It's all black magic, make no mistake about it. There are different terms and epithets for it all now,  but when you strip all the twenty-dollar words and the credentials and the technology away the intent and the effect is no different than a witch doctor's curse. 

William S. Burroughs understood this, since his uncle Ivy Lee was the creator of one of these modern strains of black magic, so-called "public relations." Burroughs considered his uncle a bonafide "evil genius." And Lee was a piker compared to the algorithm-fired masters of the dark arts striding the globe today.

Here's a story that probably won't pop up on your Facebook feed. Anyone paying attention to the Russia hacking story probably knows how incredibly weak the hacking evidence actually is,* but now Wikileaks is teasing out the Seth Rich mystery again.
‘Guccifer 2.0’ Chat With Nude Model Sparks New Conspiracy Theories About Murder of DNC’s Seth Rich 
New chat logs between alleged Democratic National Committee hacker Guccifer 2.0 and a Playboy centerfold model surfaced today via Wikileaks on Twitter, throwing more fuel on the conspiracy theories surrounding murdered DNC staffer Seth Rich. The Twitter conversation, conducted via direct messages, purports to reveal Rich as the primary leaker of the DNC e-mails that proved highly disruptive during the 2016 presidential election. 
In direct messages dated August 25, 2016, Guccifer 2.0 mentioned having a whistleblower at the DNC, and said he was looking for a “person of trust who can be a guarantee in case anything happens.”
When Young suggested trusting Julian Assange, Guccifer 2.0 called him “unsafe” and that he “may be connected with Russians” despite being his hero. 
“I’d like to find a journalist who can do an investigation and teel [sic] the real story of his life and death,” he said, and revealed that the whistleblower he was referring to was none other than a person named “Seth.” 
“I suppose u know who I’m talking about,” he said, adding that he felt sorry about the murdered DNC staffer’s parents and that he wished for journalists to uncover the truth of his murder.
Seth Rich, a 27-year-old mid-level DNC staffer, was shot and killed in the early morning of July 2016 in Washington DC, while he was walking home from a bar and talking with his girlfriend on his mobile phone. Rich’s killers left his watch and wallet untouched on his body. 
This wasn't floated by Alex Jones or David Icke, it popped up on Heat Street, which is owned by the Dow Jones Company and Rupert Murdoch's NewsCorp. This story looks like it's going to grow some legs yet.

So are you sick of the Cog-War and the Cold War Kabuki yet? Tired of your social media hijacked by proxy warriors fighting battles for cliques within the Intelligence community? Burnt out on the whole Reality Show Presidency and its discontents altogether?

Start looking into ashrams in Sri Lanka, then. This machine is just getting warmed up. 

*Maybe some bright young spark should see if maybe the hacking an inside job by intel people who correctly judged a Trump White House would be easier to dominate than a bloated, top-heavy Clinton one. Just throwing that out there for giggles and grins.

          Walt Whitman: Singer of the Body Electric   
The fire, the sweet hell within,
The unknown want, the destiny of me.
— Walt Whitman
“By the time he was 12 years old, an apprentice printer in Brooklyn, Walt had lived in about a dozen different houses, each one more cramped than the last. Of the eight Whitman children who survived infancy, one was a mental defective and three were psychic disasters; three were normal, and one became the chief celebrant of what William James called ‘the religion of healthy-mindedness,’” wrote Justin Kaplan in Walt Whitman: A Life.
“Walt’s father … owned a copy of The Ruins, a celebrated attack on Christianity and supernaturalism by the French savant Count Constantin de Volney. Like others who grew up on such literature, Walt believed that a long, dark tyranny over man’s mind and body was at last coming to an end; the Children of Adam would be able to walk in their parents’ garden. Leaves of Grass borrowed the insurgent and questioning spirit of these mentors along with literal quotations from their writings.”
“Words, when he acquired language, became life itself, links to the external world and to his unconscious,” Kaplan wrote, quoting Whitman: “ ‘A perfect writer would make words sing, dance, kiss, do the male and female act, bear children, weep, bleed, rage, stab, steal, fire cannon, steer ships, sack cities, charge with cavalry or infantry, or do any thing that man or woman or the natural powers can do.’ Words were instruments of command and of relationship to a world waiting to be named for the first time.”
Whitman had the dubious benefit of a “…thrifty and national scheme of education devised by an English Quaker, Joseph Lancaster,” Kaplan noted. “Assisted by hierarchies of student monitors, one teacher was able to distribute rote learning, together with fundamental social values and strict notions of the good and the useful, to 200 and more pupils.
“Sometimes he invoked muscular Christianity and resorted to the birch rod, the cowhide strap and, in Whitman’s words, ‘other ingenious methods of child torture,’ mental as well as physical. He demanded unison, unquestioning obedience to regulations, undivided attention and a physical discipline that dictated the precise way to hold and close a book during recitations and the position of hands when students stood at parade rest.
“The Lancaster method was designed to separate children from their ignorance as cleanly and impersonally as Eli Whitney’s cotton gin separated fibers from seeds. It proved to be stupefying even for pupils less jealous of their emotional freedom than Walt.”
Whitman said that the first time he wanted to write anything was “…when I saw a ship under full sail, and had the desire to describe it exactly as it seemed to me.”
Whitman loved swimming with other young men, nude in the fashion of the 19th century, their bodies electric.

Poise on the hips, leaping, reclining, embracing, arm-curving and tightening,
The continual changes of the flex of the mouth, and around the eyes,
The skin, the sun-burnt shade, freckles, hair,
The curious sympathy one feels, when feeling with the hand the naked meat of the body,
The circling rivers, the breath, and breathing it in and out…

“The young men ran dancing and laughing along the sand, bathed in the surf, fished, dug clams, speared messes of fat, sweet-meated eel,” wrote biographer Kaplan. “He loved swimming, of a passive sort — ‘I was a first-rate aquatic loafer,’ he recalled. ‘I possessed almost unlimited capacity for floating on my back.’ Cradled, rocked and drowsing, his body rolling ‘silently to and fro in the heave of the water,’ he lay suspended between the depths and the light, between the unconscious and the world of necessity.”
As a young man, Whitman wrote a bad didactic novel about the evils of drink, and edited a newspaper attacking Catholics and the Irish. For solutions, like other Americans, he looked West.
“Continentalism and Union were to shape Whitman’s poetic vision (‘I am large. I contain multitudes’),” Kaplan wrote. “ ‘California’s shores’ were not only the western boundaries of the Union — they were the boundaries of the found and the ‘yet unfound,’ the measure of his psychic growth. (‘Eastward I go only by force,’ Thoreau said, ‘but westward I go free.’)”
Unfortunately, Whitman’s enthusiasm for freedom only went so far. While sympathetic to the plight of individual black people, Whitman regarded their race as unfit for freedom and decried the “ranting” and “abominable fanaticism” of the abolitionists.
“Sylvester Graham, temperance reformer, physiological guru and eponym of the delicious cracker, joined in the battle against dyspepsia, or indigestion, a malady of epidemic proportions for Americans,” wrote Kaplan. “The “Peristaltic Persuader,” as he was called, favored internal and external applications of cold water and repasts of boiled vegetables and bread made from unsifted whole-wheat flour. Alcohol, tea, coffee and red meat were proscribed, on the grounds that they stimulated the lower nature.
“In a celebrated lecture on chastity, Graham argued that there had to be something amiss with any organ that sent priority messages to the brain — an erect penis was no more wholesome than a bloated stomach or an infected finger. According to him and other popular theorists of the day, the seminal loss for a man in one act of sexual intercourse was the equivalent of 40 ounces of blood, a fifth of the body’s supply. This appalling figure was a warning against sexual overindulgence — meaning more than once a month — could cause tuberculosis, convulsions, indigestion and even imbecilism; sex — especially masturbation — withered the thinking organs of men, just as thinking withered the reproductive organs of women. Sex was a major disorder, even a catastrophe; it was a wonder the species had lasted as long as it had.”
And then came Whitman. “By 1855, when Whitman presented himself coatless and bare-necked, his pelvis thrust forward, in his Leaves of Glass frontispiece, men of fashion were dressed from head to toe like black tubes,” Kaplan wrote. “No other poet of his century wrote about the body with such explicitness and joy, anatomizing it at rest and cataloguing its parts, celebrating it as an instrument of love:

“Without shame the man I like knows and avows the deliciousness of his sex,
“Without shame the woman I like knows and avows hers.

“No other poet of his century paid such a continuing high price for his boldness, ostracism, ostentatious neglect, ridicule, censorship, suppression.”
“…Whitman saw few encouraging signs in 1850. Democratic hope was at an ebb tide. Two years earlier, the overthrow of Louis Phillipe in France had touched off a wave of revolutions all over Europe. Americans rejoiced in the expectation that soon no throne would be left standing anywhere.

“‘God, ‘twas delicious,’ Whitman wrote,
‘That brief, tight, glorious grip
‘Upon the throats of kings.

“But the forces of liberal nationalism — Emerson’s ‘party of the Future,’ ‘the Movement’ — were crushed with appalling ferocity. The revolutionaries of 1848 died on the battlefields, at the barricades and before firing squads, or they fled into exile. Karl Marx spent the rest of his life in London writing Das Kapital in the reading room of the British Museum. Mazzini and Carl Schurz also took shelter in London; Giuseppe Garibaldi dipped candles on Staten Island. Whitman was to see the Hungarian patriot Louis Kossuth riding up Broadway. Reaction, repression and militarism prevailed once again.”
And then came the Civil War.
Whitman poured his love of young men onto the emotional desert of war, soothing its victims at great cost to himself.
“(H)e dedicated all his resources of physical and emotional strength into service to wounded soldiers, the maimed, the sick and the dying, for well nigh three years — until his strength broke down and he was prostrated for six months, probably the start of his later paralysis,” wrote A.L. Rowse in Homosexuals in History.
“He did an extraordinary job as a nurse-missionary-almoner all on his own; the doctors said that his services in the Washington war-hospitals and camps were more valuable than their own. Today he would be described as a psychotherapist; he was healer, father-confessor, dispenser of consolation and gifts he collected for the men. But his outpouring of love was the most important. A good lady-worker told him that the men were unresponsive. Little did she know: with limbs shattered, sick or dying, they longed to be kissed. Here was one young wounded New Yorker among thousands. ‘He behaved very manly and affectionate. The kiss I gave him as I was about leaving he returned fourfold. I had several such interviews with him. He died just after the one described.
“One cannot go into all that Walt did for these men, writing their letters, always bringing presents, spending all he could collect on them to keep their spirits going, consoling, hearing their prayers, taking their last messages.”
Neil McKenna, in his The Secret Life of Oscar Wilde, reported that in his trip to America in 1882, “Oscar desperately wanted to meet Walt Whitman, whom he and many others considered to be America’s living poet… Whitman’s poetry spoke of the potency of friendship and love between men, particularly between working-class men, and positively oozed homoeroticism. Indeed, the Calamus section of Whitman’s great poetic cycle Leaves of Grass was so intensely homoerotic that it gave rise to the short-lived term ‘calamite’ to denote a man who loved men.”
They spent hours together, drinking elderberry wine. “One of the first things I said was that I should call him ‘Oscar,’” Whitman reported. “‘I like that so much,’ he answered, laying his hand on my knee. He seemed to me like a great big, splendid boy. He is so frank, and outspoken, and manly. I don’t see why such mocking things are written of him.”
And Wilde’s reaction? David Friedman wrote that, “A Philadelphian joked that it must have been hard for Wilde to swallow the homemade wine Whitman had offered. For once Wilde rejected an invitation to snobbery. ‘If it had been vinegar, I should have drunk it all the same,’ he said. ‘I have an admiration for that man which I can hardly express.’”
Bronson Alcott, Louisa May’s father, was present when Whitman met Henry David Thoreau in 1856.
“Observing the edgy traffic between them, Alcott was reminded of ‘two beasts, each wondering what the other would do, whether to snap or run,”” Kaplan noted.
“He decided that either Henry was afraid Walt would steal his woods or Walt had recognized that for once he had met his match in Henry, ‘a sagacity potent, penetrating and peerless as his own,; an ego as unbiddable, an eye as hawklike. (Emerson surmised that perhaps Henry’s ‘fancy for Walt Whitman grew out of his taste for wild nature, for an otter, a woodchuck or a loon.’)… Each had his own vector of self-willed resistance to a trade- and conformity-minded society.”
Thoreau became an evangelical booster of Leaves of Grass.
Ralph Waldo Emerson urged Whitman to cut some of the more physically vivid passages from the expanding editions of Leaves of Grass. No more “love-flesh swelling and deliciously aching” or “limitless limpid jets of loves hot and enormous.” And please no more references to…

…The young man that wakes, deep at night, the hot hand seeking to repress what would master him;        
The mystic amorous night — the strange half-welcome pangs, visions, sweats,        
The pulse pounding through palms and trembling encircling fingers — the young man all color’d, red, ashamed, angry;

Whitman asked Emerson if the book would be as good without such passages. Emerson paused, then replied, “I did not say as good a book. I said a good book.”
Years later, Whitman said, “Expurgation is apology — yes, surrender — yes, an admission that something or other was wrong. Emerson said expurgate — I said no, no... I have not lived to regret my Emerson no.”
Whitman’s optimism was hard-pressed during the Civil War. In a single year, 1864, Whitman’s brother George became a prisoner of war and Whitman had his violent brother Jesse committed to the Kings County Lunatic Asylum. His alcoholic, widowed sister-in-law Nancy became a prostitute and gave birth to a son who was run over and killed by a brewery wagon in 1868. And Whitman’s nursing of all those shattered and dying soldiers he loved finally brought him to the verge of physical and mental collapse.
Yet, faced with calamity, Whitman determined “…to be self-balanced for contingencies,
“To confront night, storms, hunger, ridicule, accidents, rebuffs, as the trees and animals do.”
Kaplan wrote: “Somehow I seem’d to get identity with each and every thing around me, in its condition,” (Whitman) said at Timber Creek. “Nature was naked, and I was also.” Earth rocks, trees and small living beings were lessons in imperturbability, concreteness and strength. “Being” was superior to “the human trait of mere seeming,” The human habit of “persistent strayings and sickly abstractions.”
Ironically, while Whitman could identify with small living beings, apparently he couldn’t do so with large ones who happened to be black.
Although opposed to slavery, Whitman remained a racist. Watching five black regiments of Gen. Ambrose Burnside’s army march in review, Whitman remarked, “It looked funny to see the president standing with his hat off to them just the same as the rest.”
The following is from a Bill Moyers essay: “American democracy grew a soul, as it were -- given voice by one of our greatest poets, Walt Whitman, with his all-inclusive embrace in Song of Myself:

“Whoever degrades another degrades me,
and whatever is done or said returns at last to me...
I speak the pass-word primeval — I give the sign of democracy;
By God! I will accept nothing which all cannot have their counterpart of on the same terms...
(I am large -- I contain multitudes.)”

Author Kathleen Kennedy Townsend has vividly described Whitman seeing himself in whomever he met in America. As he wrote in I Sing the Body Electric:
“-- the horseman in his saddle,
Girls, mothers, house-keepers, in all their performances,
The group of laborers seated at noon-time with their open dinner-kettles and their wives waiting,
The female soothing a child — the farmer’s daughter in the garden or cow-yard,
The young fellow hoeing corn --”
…Whitman saw something else in the soul of the country: Americans at work, the laboring people whose toil and sweat built this nation.  Townsend contrasts his attitude with the way politicians and the media today — in their endless debates about wealth creation, capital gains reduction and high corporate taxes — seem to have forgotten working people. “But Whitman wouldn’t have forgotten them.” She writes, “He celebrates a nation where everyone is worthy, not where a few do well.”
I dream in my dream all the dreams of the other dreamers.
And I become the other dreamers….
Now in a moment I know what I am for, I awake.
— Walt Whitman

Whitman was apparently subject to kenshō, that spontaneous mental state described by Dumoulin as “… an insight into the identity of one’s own nature with all of reality in an eternal now, as a vision that removes all distinctions.”
“He had shared the experience of countless people, irreligious by common standards, who had flashes of illumination or ecstasy — even Caliban saw the clouds open and ‘cried to dream again,’” Whiteman biographer Justin Kaplan wrote. “These experiences have a remembered correlative or ‘trigger.’ With Whitman it was the sea, music, the grass, the green world of summer. The rhythm of these experiences is sexual and urgent — tumescence, climax, detumescence — but the ‘afterglow’ may last a lifetime, as it did with him, and he invited it an prolonged it through poetry; the poet was the shaman of modern society — a master of ‘the techniques of ecstasy.’"

          SARMIENTO.... EN FIN...   
Domingo Faustino Sarmiento
(1811 - 1888) Fragmento de la biografía por Felipe Pigna
El 15 de febrero de 1811, nació en el Carrascal uno de los barrios más pobres de la ciudad de San Juan, Domingo Faustino Sarmiento. Los primeros "maestros" de Domingo fueron su padre José Clemente Sarmiento y su tío José Eufrasio Quiroga Sarmiento, quienes le enseñaron a leer a los cuatro años. En 1816, ingresó a una de las llamadas "Escuelas de la Patria". Marchó al exilio en San Francisco del Monte, San Luis, junto a su tío, José de Oro. Allí fundaron una escuela que será el primer contacto de Sarmiento con la educación.
Poco después, regresó a San Juan y comenzó a trabajar en la tienda de su tía. "La Historia de Grecia la estudié de memoria, y la de Roma enseguida…; y esto mientras vendía yerba y azúcar, y ponía mala cara a los que me venían a sacar de aquel mundo que yo había descubierto para vivir en él. En 1827, se produjo un hecho que marcará su vida: la invasión a San Juan de los montoneros de Facundo Quiroga.

Decidió oponerse a Quiroga incorporándose al ejército unitario del General Paz. Con el grado de teniente, participó en varias batallas. Pero Facundo parecía por entonces imparable: tomó San Juan y Sarmiento decidió, en 1831, exiliarse en Chile. Se empleó como maestro en una escuela de la localidad de Los Andes. Sus ideas innovadoras provocaron la preocupación del gobernador. Molesto, se mudó a Pocura y fundó su propia escuela. Allí se enamoró de una alumna con quien tendrá su primera hija, Ana Faustina.

En 1836, pudo regresar a San Juan y fundar su primer periódico,
 El Zonda
. Pero al gobierno sanjuanino no le cayeron nada bien las críticas de Sarmiento y decidió, como una forma de censurarlo, aplicarle al diario un impuesto exorbitante que nadie podía pagar y que provocó el cierre de la publicación en 1840. Volvió a Chile y comenzó a tener éxito como periodista y como consejero educativo de los sucesivos gobiernos.

"¿Que es pues un periódico? Una mezquina hoja de papel, llena de retazos, obra sin capítulos, sin prólogo, atestada de bagatelas del momento. Se vende una casa. Se compra un criado. Se ha perdido un perro, y otras mil frioleras, que al día siguiente a nadie interesan. ¿Qué es un periódico? Examinadlo mejor. ¿Qué más contiene? Noticias de países desconocidos, lejanos, cuyos sucesos no pueden interesarnos. (...) Trozos de literatura, retazos de novelas. Decretos de gobierno. (...) Un periódico es el hombre. El ciudadano, la civilización, el cielo, la tierra, lo pasado, lo presente, los crímenes, las grandes acciones, la buena o la mala administración, las necesidades del individuo, la misión del gobierno, la historia contemporánea, la historia de todos los tiempos, el siglo presente, la humanidad en general, la medida de la civilización de un pueblo." D. F. Sarmiento,
 El Zonda 
Nº 4.

En Chile, Sarmiento pudo iniciar una etapa más tranquila en su vida. Se casó con Benita, viuda de Don Castro y Calvo, adoptó a su hijo Dominguito y publicó su obra más importante:
 Facundo, Civilización y Barbarie. Eligió el periodismo como trinchera para luchar contra Rosas. Fundó dos nuevos periódicos: La Tribuna y La Crónica,
desde los que atacó duramente a Don Juan Manuel.

Entre 1845 y 1847, por encargo del gobierno chileno, visitó Uruguay, Brasil, Francia, España, Argelia, Italia, Alemania, Suiza, Inglaterra, EEUU, Canadá y Cuba. En cada uno de estos países, se interesó por el sistema educativo, el nivel de la enseñanza y las comunicaciones. Todas estas impresiones las volcó en su libro
 Viajes por Europa, África y América
. A fines de 1845 conoció en Montevideo a Esteban Echeverría, uno de los fundadores de la generación del ’37 y como él, opositor a Rosas y exiliado. Estando en Francia, en 1846, tuvo un raro privilegio: conocer personalmente al general San Martín en su casa de Grand Bourg y mantener una larga entrevista con el libertador.

Sarmiento pensaba que el gran problema de la Argentina era el atraso que él sintetizaba con la frase "civilización y barbarie". Como muchos pensadores de su época, entendía que la civilización se identificaba con la ciudad, con lo urbano, lo que estaba en contacto con lo europeo, o sea lo que para ellos era el progreso. La barbarie, por el contrario, era el campo, lo rural, el atraso, el indio y el gaucho. Este dilema, según él, solo podía resolverse con el triunfo de la "civilización" sobre la "barbarie". Decía: "Quisiéramos apartar de toda cuestión social americana a los salvajes por quienes sentimos sin poderlo remediar, una invencible repugnancia". En una carta le aconsejaba a Mitre: "no trate de economizar sangre de gauchos. Este es un abono que es preciso hacer útil al país. La sangre es lo único que tienen de seres humanos esos salvajes". Lamentablemente el progreso no llegó para todos y muchos "salvajes y bárbaros" pagaron con su vida o su libertad el "delito" de haber nacido indios o de ser gauchos y no tener un empleo fijo.
La obra literaria de Sarmiento estuvo marcada por su actuación política desde que escribió en 1845: "¡Sombra terrible de Facundo, voy a evocarte, para que, sacudiendo el ensangrentado polvo que cubre tus cenizas, te levantes a explicarnos la vida secreta y las convulsiones internas que desgarran las entrañas de un noble pueblo! (...) Facundo no ha muerto ¡Vive aún! ; está vivo en las tradiciones populares, en la política y las revoluciones argentinas; en Rosas, su heredero, su complemento. (...) Facundo, provinciano, bárbaro, valiente, audaz, fue reemplazado por Rosas, hijo de la culta Buenos Aires, sin serlo él, (...) tirano sin rival hoy en la tierra". Estos párrafos del
nos muestran el estilo de Sarmiento. Facundo, a quien odia y admira a la vez, es la excusa para hablar del gaucho, del caudillo, del desierto interminable, en fin, de la Argentina de entonces, de todos los elementos que representan para él el atraso y con los que hay que terminar por las buenas o las malas.

Sarmiento desde Chile alternó su actividad periodística con la literaria y educativa. En su libro
 Viajes (1849) se reflejan mucho más que las impresiones de un viajero atento y observador; allí se ocupó de lo que lo maravilla de los países que visita y que quisiera ver en su tierra. En su libro Argirópolis 
(1850) dedicado a Urquiza, expresó un proyecto para crear una confederación en la cuenca del Plata, compuesta por las actuales Argentina, Uruguay y Paraguay, cuya capital estaría en la Isla Martín García. El modelo de organización era la Constitución norteamericana y proponía fomentar la inmigración, la agricultura y la inversión de capitales extranjeros.
En 1862 el general Mitre asumió la presidencia y se propuso unificar al país. En estas circunstancias asumió Sarmiento la gobernación de San Juan. A poco de asumir dictó una Ley Orgánica de Educación Pública que imponía la enseñanza primaria obligatoria y creaba escuelas para los diferentes niveles de educación, entre ellas una con capacidad para mil alumnos, el Colegio Preparatorio, más tarde llamado Colegio Nacional de San Juan, y la Escuela de Señoritas, destinada a la formación de maestras.

En 1863 se produjo en la zona el levantamiento del Chacho Peñaloza y Sarmiento decretó el estado de sitio y como coronel que era, asumió personalmente la guerra contra el caudillo riojano hasta derrotarlo. El ministro del interior de Mitre, Guillermo Rawson, criticó la actitud de Sarmiento de decretar el estado de sitio por considerar que era una decisión exclusiva del poder ejecutivo nacional. Sarmiento, según su estilo, renunció. Corría el año 1864.

Sarmiento llegó a Nueva York en mayo de 1865. Acababa de asumir la presidencia Andrew Johnson en reemplazo de Abraham Lincoln, asesinado por un fanático racista. Sarmiento quedó muy impresionado y escribió
 Vida de Lincoln
. Frecuentó los círculos académicos norteamericanos y fue distinguido con los doctorados "Honoris Causa" de las Universidades de Michigan y Brown.

Mientras Sarmiento seguía en los Estados Unidos, se aproximaban las elecciones y un grupo de políticos lo postuló para la candidatura presidencial. Los comicios se realizaron en abril de 1868 y el 16 de agosto, mientras estaba de viaje hacia Buenos Aires, el Congreso lo consagró presidente de los argentinos. Asumió el 12 de octubre de ese año.

Cuando Sarmiento asumió la presidencia todavía se combatía en el Paraguay. La guerra iba a llevarse la vida de su querido hijo Dominguito. Sarmiento ya no volvería a ser el mismo. Un profundo dolor lo acompañaría hasta su muerte.

Durante su presidencia siguió impulsando la educación fundando en todo el país unas 800 escuelas y los institutos militares: Liceo Naval y Colegio Militar.

Sarmiento había aprendido en los EE.UU. la importancia de las comunicaciones en un país extenso como el nuestro. Durante su gobierno se tendieron 5.000 kilómetros de cables telegráficos y en 1874, poco antes de dejar la presidencia pudo inaugurar la primera línea telegráfica con Europa. Modernizó el correo y se preocupó particularmente por la extensión de las líneas férreas. Pensaba que, como en los EE.UU., el tren debía ser el principal impulsor del mercado interno, uniendo a las distintas regiones entre sí y fomentando el comercio nacional. Pero éstos no eran los planes de las compañías británicas inglesas, cuyo único interés era traer los productos del interior al puerto de Buenos Aires para poder exportarlos a Londres. En lugar de un modelo ferroviario en forma de telaraña, o sea interconectado, se construyó uno en forma de abanico, sin conexiones entre las regiones y dirigido al puerto. Este es un claro ejemplo de las limitaciones que tenían los gobernantes argentinos frente a las imposiciones del capital inglés. La red ferroviaria paso de 573 kilómetros a 1331 al final de su presidencia.

En 1869 se concretó el primer censo nacional. Los argentinos eran por entonces 1.836.490, de los cuales el 31% habitaba en la provincia de Buenos Aires y el 71% era analfabeto. Según el censo, el 5% eran indígenas y el 8% europeos. El 75% de las familias vivía en la pobreza, en ranchos de barro y paja. Los profesionales sólo representaban el 1% de la población. La población era escasa, estaba mal educada y, como la riqueza, estaba mal distribuida. Sarmiento fomentó la llegada al país de inmigrantes ingleses y de la Europa del Norte y desalentó la de los de la Europa del Sur. Pensaba que la llegada de sajones fomentaría en el país el desarrollo industrial y la cultura.
Entre las múltiples obras de Sarmiento hay que mencionar la organización de la contaduría nacional y el Boletín Oficial que permitieron a la población en general, conocer las cuentas oficiales y los actos de gobierno. Creó el primer servicio de tranvías a caballo, diseñó los Jardines Zoológico y Botánico. Al terminar su presidencia 100.000 niños cursaban la escuela primaria.

Al finalizar su mandato en 1874, Sarmiento se retiró de la presidencia pero no de la política. En 1875 asumió el cargo de Director General de Escuelas de la Provincia de Buenos Aires y continuó ejerciendo el periodismo desde
 La Tribuna
. Poco después fue electo senador por San Juan.

Durante la presidencia de Roca ejerció el cargo de Superintendente General de Escuelas del Consejo Nacional de Educación. En la época en que Sarmiento fomentaba la educación popular, el índice de analfabetos era altísimo. En el campo había muy pocas escuelas porque la mayoría de los estancieros no tenían ningún interés en que los peones y sus hijos dejaran de ser ignorantes. Cuanta menos educación tuvieran más fácil sería explotarlos.

Pero Sarmiento trataba de hacerles entender que una educación dirigida según las ideas y los valores de los sectores dominantes, lejos de poner en peligro sus intereses, los reproducía y confirmaba. "Para tener paz en la República Argentina, para que los montoneros no se levanten, para que no haya vagos, es necesario educar al pueblo en la verdadera democracia, enseñarles a todos lo mismo, para que todos sean iguales... para eso necesitamos hacer de toda la república una escuela."

De todas formas le costó muchísimo convencer a los poderosos de que les convenía la educación popular y recién en 1884, logró la sanción de su viejo proyecto de ley de educación gratuita, laica y obligatoria, que llevará el número 1420.

Una de sus últimas actuaciones públicas data de 1885. El presidente Roca prohibió a los militares emitir opiniones políticas. Sarmiento, que no podía estar sin expresar su pensamiento, decidió pedir la baja del ejército, y opinar libremente a través de las páginas de su diario
 El Censor

Pocos años antes había dejado escrito una especie de testamento político: "Nacido en la pobreza, criado en la lucha por la existencia, más que mía de mi patria, endurecido a todas las fatigas, acometiendo todo lo que creí bueno, y coronada la perseverancia con el éxito, he recorrido todo lo que hay de civilizado en la tierra y toda la escala de los honores humanos, en la modesta proporción de mi país y de mi tiempo; he sido favorecido con la estimación de muchos de los grandes hombres de la Tierra; he escrito algo bueno entre mucho indiferente; y sin fortuna que nunca codicié, porque ere bagaje pesado para la incesante pugna, espero una buena muerte corporal, pues la que me vendrá en política es la que yo esperé y no deseé mejor que dejar por herencia millones en mejores condiciones intelectuales, tranquilizado nuestro país, aseguradas las instituciones y surcado de vías férreas el territorio, como cubierto de vapores los ríos, para que todos participen del festín de la vida, de que yo gocé sólo a hurtadillas".

          Yale Law School Starts First-of-its-Kind Program To Train Law Professors   
Yale Law School is set to begin offering a doctorate in law, calling it the first such program in the country.
          Doctors Without Boners   

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Aam koi aur kaa raha hai aur chilke hum pe fek raha hai
Ek saadhu gali se jaa raha tha ki uspe upper se ek bra aa giri .

Saadhu bola : Hey Prabhu !
yeh teri kaisi leela hai ?
Aam koi aur kaa raha hai aur chilke hum pe fek raha hai .

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          Dear Dreadful Dream Doctors   
Reply #8
I like that very much collegem$

There are two ways of Spreading Light:

to be the Candle or the Mirror that Reflects it.

Occasionally, I imagine, someone could do both- spot a new idea, then publicize it.

~Edith Wharton, a Pulitzer Prize-Winning author

Now how to approach every new day?

By L@@KING into a mirror with a smile enjoying the return smile we receive

Eddessa_Knight with shining light
          Comentario en Alfredo Pérez Guerrero por Luis Rivadeneira Játiva   
Un artículo muy bien logrado sobre el doctor Alfredo Pérez Guerrero, escrito por el Dr. Jorge Enríquez Páez, quien colaboró con el cuando fue rector en la Universidad Central del Ecuador.
          Comentario en EPN inició el Doctorado de Ingeniería Eléctrica por ING GUSTAVO ANDRADE   
          Comentario en EPN inició el Doctorado de Ingeniería Eléctrica por ING GUSTAVO ANDRADE   
          Comentario en EPN inició el Doctorado de Ingeniería Eléctrica por ING GUSTAVO ANDRADE   
          Comentario en EPN inició el Doctorado de Ingeniería Eléctrica por ING GUSTAVO ANDRADE   
          Comentario en EPN inició el Doctorado de Ingeniería Eléctrica por ING GUSTAVO ANDRADE   
          Comentario en EPN inició el Doctorado de Ingeniería Eléctrica por ING GUSTAVO ANDRADE   
          Comentario en EPN inició el Doctorado de Ingeniería Eléctrica por ING GUSTAVO ANDRADE   
          Comentario en EPN inició el Doctorado de Ingeniería Eléctrica por ING GUSTAVO ANDRADE   
          Comentario en EPN inició el Doctorado de Ingeniería Eléctrica por ING GUSTAVO ANDRADE   
          Comentario en EPN inició el Doctorado de Ingeniería Eléctrica por ING GUSTAVO ANDRADE   
          Comentario en EPN inició el Doctorado de Ingeniería Eléctrica por ING GUSTAVO ANDRADE   
          Comentario en EPN inició el Doctorado de Ingeniería Eléctrica por ING GUSTAVO ANDRADE   
          Comentario en EPN inició el Doctorado de Ingeniería Eléctrica por ING GUSTAVO ANDRADE   
          Comentario en EPN inició el Doctorado de Ingeniería Eléctrica por ING GUSTAVO ANDRADE   
          Comentario en EPN inició el Doctorado de Ingeniería Eléctrica por ING GUSTAVO ANDRADE   
          Comentario en EPN inició el Doctorado de Ingeniería Eléctrica por ING GUSTAVO ANDRADE   
          Comentario en EPN inició el Doctorado de Ingeniería Eléctrica por ING GUSTAVO ANDRADE   
          Comentario en EPN inició el Doctorado de Ingeniería Eléctrica por ING GUSTAVO ANDRADE   
          Pervert Doctor Use Young Girls To Fuck Them In His Office   
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          Comentario en EPN inició el Doctorado de Ingeniería Eléctrica por ING GUSTAVO ANDRADE   
          Comentario en EPN inició el Doctorado de Ingeniería Eléctrica por ING GUSTAVO ANDRADE   
          Comentario en EPN inició el Doctorado de Ingeniería Eléctrica por ING GUSTAVO ANDRADE   
          Comentario en EPN inició el Doctorado de Ingeniería Eléctrica por ING GUSTAVO ANDRADE   
          Comentario en EPN inició el Doctorado de Ingeniería Eléctrica por ING GUSTAVO ANDRADE   
          Comentario en EPN inició el Doctorado de Ingeniería Eléctrica por ING GUSTAVO ANDRADE   
          Comentario en EPN inició el Doctorado de Ingeniería Eléctrica por ING GUSTAVO ANDRADE   
          Comentario en EPN inició el Doctorado de Ingeniería Eléctrica por ING GUSTAVO ANDRADE   
          Doctor Has Unforgettable Night Shift With Vampire Milf Nurse   
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          Patient Swoops Busty Doctor at her Office   
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          This made me think of you all!   
There's a great article in the NYTimes today that may speak to some of our friends, the compulsive runners who keep going in spite of medical injuries, etc. It made me think of myself as I'm currently benched for a 9-month pregnancy stint that I know I would absolutely be running through if I lived in the States and not in Italy. Telling me not to run (doctors, peers, friends, husband) and following orders (I'm a rule follower when it comes down to it) felt like part of what makes ME ME was being taken away. Even now, after seven months, I feel like a big phoney if I even bring up the fact that I ever ran in my life! That's how fragile the runner's ego can be! Like if I'm not doing it now then I am just not a tough enough person to call myself a runner.

But on the inside, I know that I will always be a runner.

My latest shenanigan was agreeing to take in my friend Leslie's treadmill that she got when she moved to Trieste for a year with a newborn baby (she's one of those elite runners who wins just about every race she enters. I love her). She used it for runs during baby's naps and now just wants it to have a good home.  I am secretly elated, honored, profoundly greatful that she chose mine!

My husband wants to know where I intend to put it. Did I tell you I live in a small apartment and have no idea? No biggy. It'll fit. And that is what is so exciting today!

p.s. Now I REALLY feel sucky about NOT running while pregnant!! BTW GO KARA!!! I love her. And to think we'll have kids about the same age!!! I'm about to put my my Vibrams and kick some asphalt up to the bike path. Shhh!
          Psychotic Victim of Police persecution asks Doctors for Help and Gets Police   
Neil Scott Named and shamed as a Psychotic in the £50,900 Burglary Case on. #Teesside. Because of his benefits being stopped illegally by DWP agreed as a Mental patient for the last 4years by his own Doctors,Wouldn’t give him a Sick note when asked,Police were called into Trinity Medical centre Middlesbrough to remove Neil who … Continue reading Psychotic Victim of Police persecution asks Doctors for Help and Gets Police
          Japanese Schoolgirls Caught Their Teacher Fucking School Doctor   
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          Multi-skilled Carpenter $20 -$25 per hr. - HouseDoctors - Aurora, CO   
A Guaranteed Base, $20-$25/ hour based on experience/skillsInitial 30 and 90-day Performance Review with Opportunity for Pay IncreaseContinuous Year-Round... $20 - $25 an hour
From HouseDoctors - Tue, 20 Jun 2017 11:09:11 GMT - View all Aurora, CO jobs
          Update: 2 Weeks to go!   
We are almost there! A little more than two weeks until our due date! Hooray!

I'm sorry I've been MIA for so long! School has been really crazy this year (in a good way) and I have been sooo tired! When I spend a lot of time on Spark it is really hard for me to not track my calories. My doctor does NOT want me counting calories or stressing over weight gain. So I have been on Spark sporadically. I have gained a very healthy 38 pounds and my doctor is pleased. I am definitely all b...
          All of Me   
While I'm not focusing on losing weight (or even maintaining my weight) right now, I am still trying to find balance in my diet. My doctor wants me to eat around 2,400 calories a day and gain around 35 pounds during my pregnancy. I have been trying my hardest to eat that much food (its a lot!) while still making healthy choices. I've added more cheese to my diet along with whole grain foods that are higher in calories. I eat yogurt daily and have also started making fruit and veggie smoothies...
          Shoe review: 50 km with the Adipure 360   

The title is misleading. I haven’t run the entire distance recently— although the last time I did was on the mountainous trails of Dahilayan. Rather, it took me a little over 2 weeks of a decent run on the Adidas Adipure 360.

A nasty fall, some cuts, abrasions, one big laceration and 50 kilometers later, the Adipure now stands as my to-go shoe in long distance running.

The Adipure 360 is traditionally marketed by the three stripes as an all-around gym shoe. But its minimalism and flexibility make it a very adequate running shoe. 

Merrell True Gloves, VFF Bikila, Adipure 360
The Adipure is a lightweight training shoe (comparable to the Nike Frees) with its breathable upper mesh and neon green non-marking out sole made up of synthetic textile. The shoe tongue is attached to the sides much like the Free. 

175 gm, 200 gm and 220 gm, respectively.
Its toebox is wide enough to allow toes to splay while the arches provide just the right amount of support for medium pillars as mine. With regards to cushioning, there is enough ground feel  and sensory feedback on trail rocks and pebbles—quite tricky with the Bikilas or True Gloves.
Keeping the doctor away at 175 gm.
The 10 mm measured heel-to-toe drop is not as revolutionary as the zero drops of more minimalist shoes but it is versatile enough to be worn casual with faded jeans while strolling around the Opera House.

Rating: 4 out of 5
Good: Lightweight, flexible, minimal cushion, casual design, attached shoe tongue, 10 mm heel-to-toe drop, wide enough toebox.

Needs improvement: Too much cushion around the Achilles area.

Overall: This is a decent all-around training shoe.

I’d definitely recommend this for runs over 10k. For those who aren’t ready yet for a more minimal shoe, this is for you.

See you on the road!

          A Valentine's Treat   

Ask any race organizer and he will most likely agree with me. While a runner’s day starts a few hours prior to a race, a race organizer’s starts on the day he said yes. 

How long does it take to get a race organized? The difference between this race and my first (hospital activity) and second (school activity) race directing duties was on the level of participation. This was an open run on a provincial scale.

My day started about 2 weeks prior when my proposal last year for a quarterly run was approved by the Provincial Government of Agusan del Sur.

Dubbed Valentine’s 8k and 5k Fun Run, my proposed race was unique in itself. Agusan del Sur divided into 2 Congressional districts since the latest elections will have 2 starting points but one finish line, the Governor’s residence.

This race will also usher in the 80th birthday celebration of the province's matriarch considered "Ang Inahan sa Agusan del Sur", former Governor Valentina Galido Plaza.

District 1 will have a hilly 8k from Prosperidad Municipal Hall with the gun being fired by none other than former Governor now Congresswoman Tina Plaza. Running the 8 on this one with its unforgiving elevations will feel like 10.  

Newly formed District 2 will have a flat 5k from neighboring San Francisco town, its gun start fired by Congresswoman Bebs Mellana. 

All runners will converge at Governor Eddie Bong Plaza’s residence in Patin-ay where Certificates and snacks await the finishers, as well as, prizes for the Top 3 finishers.

With the support of the Provincial Government of Agusan del Sur, anchored by the Regional Trial Court Branch 6, Integrated Bar of the Philippines (IBP) Agusan del Sur Chapter and the D.O.  Plaza Memorial Hospital Medics, the race started amidst foggy and cloudy conditions, perfect climate for runners.

And with over 300 registrants for the 5k division and more than 50 runners for the 8k, the race saw running enthusiasts as young as 10 to as old as 67, this despite the lack of full information dissemination through radio, print and broadcast media as the organizers were keeping the numbers down for safety reasons.

Special thanks to the following:

   -Former Governor Valentina Galido Plaza
   -Office of the Provincial Governor, Hon. Adolph Edward G. Plaza
   -Office of the Provincial Administrator
   -Office of the Provincial Sports Coordinator
   -Regional Trial Court Branch 6
   -IBP Agusan del Sur
   -Philippine National Police and Highway Patrol Group
   -Search and Rescue Agusan del Sur (SARAS)
   -Medical First Responders (MFR) 
   -Patin-ay National High School
   -Office of the Vice Mayor Frederick Mark Mellana, Prosperidad
   -Office of the Mayor of San Francisco
   -Office of House Representative Hon. Valentina "Tina" G. Plaza
   -Office of House Respresentative Hon. Evelyn "Bebs" Mellana
   -Edward P. Mellana

  -and the D.O. Plaza Memorial Hospital Medics composed of our tireless doctors (Lor, Marge, Erryll, Elmore, Susan, Mama Bau, Viern, Richard, Rhadz, Alain and the rest) and nurses (Kat, Alvin, Ed, Luchie, Bepven, Daryl and the rest) for making this event a success.

Mandated by the Governor himself who is an active outdoorsman, a planned 10 miler to a half marathon distance (21k) is in the works to herald the celebration of the Naliyagan Festival in June. The race will involve neighboring towns and NGOs so the number of registrants will be higher. 

This is probably one of those times when I want 3 of me, 1 to run the race, 1 to take photos, and the other to supervise.

Watch out for it!

Until then, see you on the road runners!

Photos at our fan page. Facebook: DOPMH Medics

          Running and the Revolution   

Why do I find this funny? Because it puts Jesus squarely on the earth – the same man who performed miracles built cabinets.
Dallas Willard, in The Divine Conspiracy, writes,
“If he were to come today as he did then, he could carry out his mission through most any decent and useful occupation. He could be a clerk or accountant in a hardware store, a computer repairman, a banker, an editor, doctor, waiter, teacher, farmhand, lab technician, or construction worker. He could have run a housecleaning service or repair automobiles. In other words, if he were to come today he could very well do what you do. He could very well live in your apartment or house, hold down your job, have your education and life prospects, and live within your family surroundings and time. None of this would be the least hindrance to the eternal kind of life that was his by nature and becomes available to us through him.”
Tom Nelson adds,
Working with his hands day in and day out in a carpentry shop was not below Jesus. Jesus did not see his carpentry work as mundane or meaningless, for it was the work his Father had called him to do.
This Christmas, allow yourself to be amazed by the incarnation. God, who is spirit, became human, for we are material. The fact that Jesus came to earth and lived as a human being informs us of God’s view concerning the dignity of our humanness, and the dignity of the material world in which we live.
Frederick Buechner, in his great little book Wishful Thinking: A Seeker’s ABC wrote,
“The Word became flesh,” wrote John, “and dwelt among us” (John 1:14). That is what incarnation means. It is untheological. It is unsophisticated. It is undignified. But according to Christianity, it is the way things are.
All religions and philosophies which deny the reality or the significance of the material, the fleshly, the earthbound, are themselves denied. Moses at the burning bush was told to take off his shoes because the ground on which he stood was holy ground (Exodus 3:5), and incarnation means that all ground is holy because God not only made it but walked on it, ate and slept and worked and died on it. If we are saved anywhere, we are saved here. And what is saved is not some diaphanous distillation of our bodies and our earth, but our bodies and our earth themselves. Jerusalem becomes the New Jerusalem coming down out of heaven like a bride adorned for her husband (Revelation 21:2). Our bodies are sown perishable and raised imperishable (1 Corinthians 15:42).
One of the blunders religious people are particularly fond of making is the attempt to be more spiritual than God.
All work can indeed be holy. Let’s honor God with our work as we worship him because of the incarnation of Jesus Christ.

          1921-08-05 Mike Gibbons W-PTS12 Gus Platts [Arena Athletic Club, Arena, Boston, MA, USA]   
1921-08-06 The Boston Daily Globe (Boston, MA) (page 7)
It Will Take a Better Boxer Than This Platts Person Is to Show If Mike Gibbons Has Really Come Back to His Old Form

Mike Gibbons, the St. Paul Phantom, never met a softer opponent or won a decision as easily as he did the one he gained over Gus Platts of England, European middleweight champion, in their 10-round bout at the Arena A. C. last night.

Gibbons received $5000 for administering the licking he gave Platts and the latter received $3500 for taking it. Platts is one of the worst English fighters who ever showed in Boston. He is a sturdy fellow but muscle bound.

The punches he landed on Gibbons had little force. Only a few times did Gibbons show how clever he is when he wants to be. He did not have to display his cleverness, Platts was so easy. The St. Paul boxer took many punches that he could easily have avoided, but he evidently did not want to show the Englishman up any worse than he was doing.

It looked at times as if Gibbons were carrying Platts, and there were other times when it appeared as if he were trying for a knockout, for he staggered Platts with lefts and rights on the jaw.

Gibbons hit Platts so often with lefts and rights on the jaw, face and stomach that it was impossible to keep count of them. It was easy enough to keep tabs on the blows that Platts landed. The latter was such a punching bag that the big crowd of fans would not have kicked if the referee had stopped the bout before it had gone half the distance. If Platts is the European champion then the men he defeated in order to win that title must have been a poor lot of fighters.

This was Platts' first fight in America. He will have a sore fact for some days from the jabbing that Gibbons gave him all through the battle.

Platts weighed in at 160 pounds at 3 o'clock and Gibbons tipped the beam at 155 pounds at the same time. It was the second easy match that Gibbons had won in two succeeding nights, he having won from Ratner the night before in New York.

In the semifinal bout, Barney Rivers of Providence outclassed Willie Corbett of Somerville so much that Corbett's seconds threw in the towel in the sixth round and Rivers was declared the winner.

Freddie Madden of East Boston and Frankie Conway of Philadelphia boxed a hard and fast eight-round bout. Madden got the decision, but the majority of the fans figured that Conway was the winner.

In the opening bout, Newport Johnny Brown won from Billy Coogan of South Boston, three rounds.

1921-08-06 The Boston Herald (Boston, MA) (page 6)
Platts Clay in Hands of Mike Gibbons
Gibbons Throws Flock of Boxing Gloves All Over Opponent Platts

Gus Platts, proud possessor of the middleweight championship of Europe, was due to gaze on the field of American contenders for world championship honors. He might have obtained a peek at Mike Gibbons last night at the Boston Arena, but if he did it was a little peep. For 10 rounds Europe's best bet in the middleweight division stopped Mike Gibbons's assortment of punches unflinchingly and at the end was marked up a little, but as full of fight as when he started.

Hard Work for Platts

If Platts is the champion of Europe we would like to see some of the men he defeated winning his way to the title and the man he captured the championship from must be a "beaut." Poor Gus looked worse than anything we ever saw in a local ring. He absolutely knew nothing about boxing, but of course that could be accounted for when the fact is known that he faced the cleverest middleweight in the business today.

Gibbons, smart as ever, but lacking much of the old dash and snap that featured in his previous encounters here, looked good to the uninitiated who never saw him in action before, but not like the Gibbons who smeared Gus Christie and Joe White all over the ring in 12-round bouts several years ago.

Boxing to Gibbons is the most natural thing in the world, while to Platts it is hard work. There isn't a natural move in the Englishman, and if he has any he failed to display them last night. He couldn't do a thing but stop punches with his face and body until the mill became monotonous, and if Gibbons hadn't been in fairly good condition he would have tired under his own efforts thumping the Englishman.

Platts was willing enough and game as a pebble. He was belted enough in five rounds to have discouraged a less game fighter but never stopped trying to keep pace with his elusive and cleverer opponent. Gibbons was altogether too fast and shifty for Platts, who expected that he might tire under a heavy pace, only to be fooled in the end and outpointed for the decision. Outpointed hardly describes the result as Platts was outclassed more than any other fighter who has appeared in a local ring and been on his feet at the end.

Platts Never in Distress

Despite all that came his way, Platts at no time was in danger of being bucked away. He never was in distress and never wavered under the stinging left jabs and hooks Gibbons caught him with in each of the 10 rounds. Not once did Platts back away from his opponent. The faster Gibbons scored the harder Platts tried to fight, but it was next to a hopeless task for him to score on Gibbons.

Platts admitted his defeat manfully, but believes he will do better in his next contest. What he received last night was what he wanted, a hard, fast contest, and there is no denying that he learned a lot about boxing from Gibbons.

Gus claimed distinction of never having been knocked off his feet in more than 200 contests, and the distinction still belongs to him as he was propped up at the finish without ever being in danger of being knocked down even though he stopped more gloves than he ever thought were made.

Corbett Stops in Sixth

Willie Corbett had to give up in the sixth round in his fight with Barney Rivers in one of the preliminary bouts. The Cambridge boxer was not in any too good condition and the pace proved too warm for his comfort when his seconds tossed in the towel.

Freddie Madden of East Boston defeated Frankie Conway of Philadelphia in an eight-round bout. The judges' decision failed to please a few, but Madden won the contest by his cleaner and harder hitting and was entitled to the verdict.

Willie Coogan started out like a sure winner, but was defeated in the first round in his fight with Young Brown of Newport. The latter was sent to the canvas with a right that looked good enough to win the fight for Coogan, but when Brown took his feet he made the going warmer than Coogan could stand.

1921-08-06 The Boston Post (Boston, MA) (page 5)
Gibbons Winner but Platts Game
European Champion Cheered for Forcing Tactics, but Is Outclassed by St. Paul Phantom

When Gus Platts of England tied up with Mike Gibbons of St. Paul as the proper opponent with whom to make his American debut, he made a big mistake.

He knows this himself, now, so do the 7000 fans who took in last night's bout at the Arena.

Gibbons, though 37 years old and growing older, won the decision all the way, starting with the first round and going through to the end of the 10th.

Platts showed himself to be game, willing and tough, but he was dead slow as a ringster alongside the St. Paul "phantom," and stopped enough punches to sink a battleship. Happily for Platts, Gibbons is not a hard hitter, for Mike speared his man with straight lefts and rights, hooked him to the jaw with either hand, and now and then shook him up with jolts and uppercuts to the chin. Against the Britisher, the St. Paul man appeared to have lost none of his old-time speed, cunning and cleverness. His showing caused many to express the query what he would do with either Wilson or Downey or both.

Though Platts' face and jaw was the target for Mike's pet punches, the bulldog in the Englishman caused him to stick right with him, and, excepting two or three rounds, he was always forcing. His aggressiveness won for him more than one cheer in the earlier stanzas, though toward the last, when the fans realized that he had no chance to win, the referee was urged to interfere.

Face Badly Puffed

Gibbons left the ring without a mark, while Platts' face was badly puffed and bore a cut under the right eye. Jack Sheehan was the third man in the ring. After the bout it was learned that Platts had suffered a rupture in connection with his training and narrowly escaped being barred by the State's doctor from going into the ring.

Willie Coogan of South Boston, who was substituted for Denny Glynn in the first prelim, because the State weigher found Glynn six pounds overweight, gave Johnny Brown of Newport, R. I., a lively scrap for a couple of rounds, upsetting the Rhode Islander in the initial session. Then Willie blew up in the third and the referee stopped the affair, the award going to Brown.

Madden's Verdict

Freddie Madden, East Boston, and Frankie Conway, Philadelphia, put up a rugged eight-rounder in the next prelim. Madden did the cleaner landing and cleverer work, but too much holding to please the fans. He was given the verdict and the fans did not like the decision.

Willie Corbett, the Tech student, bit off too big a mouthful in Barney Rivers of Woonsocket, R. I., in the semi-final. Willie made a game, uphill fight of it and had the better of the first three rounds. Then he began to go to pieces and in the sixth the towel was tossed from his corner. The award went to Rivers.
          Memo from the Department of Useless Information Retrieval   
This morning I couldn't remember, when asked by the receptionist, when I last visited the eye doctor.

Among other potentially useful things I can't remember: anything from my graduate school statistics course.

But with only the letter X to go on, I answered 59 Across in this morning's New York Times Crossword, "1985 Golden Globe-nominated role for Eddie Murphy."

Answer: Axel Foley.
          1907-06-03 Harry Harris W-DQ8 Harlem Tommy Murphy [National Sporting Club, Lyric Hall, Manhattan, NY, USA]   
1907-06-04 The Brooklyn Daily Eagle (Brooklyn, NY) (page S2)
"Pride of Harlem" Ordered Out of Ring at National Sporting Club.

Harry Harris won over "Harlem" Tommy Murphy on a foul in the eighth round of a ten-round contest last night, at the National Sporting Club. Murphy had fought foul throughout and was allowed to proceed by Referee Johnnie White, who called Tommy's tactic unintentional, but in the eighth, when Murphy, in plain sight of everybody, deliberately butted Harris under the chin, he sent the "Pride of Harlem" from the ring.

Harris fought an excellent battle, considering the time he has been out of the ring; his left jabs were very effective and played havoc with Murphy's temper by repeatedly jarring Tommy's head; his footwork saved him many times when it seemed as if it only needed one more punch from Murphy to put him away. The body work weakened Harris, and Murphy would probably have stopped him before the limit, had he kept his head. Murphy's work was crude and did not tend to add to his popularity.

In the preliminaries, "Kid" Egan won over Harry Phillips; Willie Dorsey bested Joe Bedell, and Jack Robinson earned the decision over "Dutch" Zimmer.

Just before the main bout Terry McGovern, George Dixon and Young Corbett were introduced and received a rousing reception. Terry seemed in fine shape, but said there would be no more fighting for him.

1907-06-04 The Evening Telegram (New York, NY) (page 7)
1907-06-04 The New York Herald (New York, NY) (page 7)
Harry Harris Wins from Murphy on Foul
In the first fight of real quality held in New York without police interference since the lapse of the Horton law, seven years ago, Harry Harris last night won on a foul from "Harlem Tommy" Murphy. The decision was received with enthusiastic approbation by the members of the National Sporting Club in Lyric Hall, fully a quarter of whom were in evening dress.

Although the battle was sensational from the tap of the gong that called the two boys to the centre of the ring until the referee, "Johnny" White, sent Murphy disqualified to his corner, the greatest interest perhaps lies in the fact that it marked a resumption of legitimate pugilism in New York.

All present were bona fide members of the club and more representative men have seldom attended a glove event. Seated around the ringside were Stock Exchange members, merchants, physicians, "men about town," politicians and owners of famous race horses. They generally approved of the referee's decision, giving the winner's share of the purse to Harris.

Murphy was rough throughout the battle, which had been scheduled to go ten rounds. At least three different times did he foul Harris before he was disqualified after fifty-five seconds of fighting in the eighth round. He was full of the fever of warfare and at all times attempted to tear his way through Harris, who remained cool, though frequently in danger of a knockout. As a fighting machine Murphy is made of the right material, but he lacks the proper gray matter under his hair.

It was an experienced boxer possessed of ring generalship surpassed by few against a fighter who was willing to accept two blows that he might land one. The boxer won simply because his opponent has more willingness than brains. Harris had permitted himself to be lured into the ring under rules that weakened him and strengthened Murphy. He was fortunate that the fight terminated in his favor.

In the opinion of many White might have proclaimed Harris the winner on two prior occasions without doing Murphy an injustice. One opportunity for action on the part of White developed in the third round, when Murphy fouled his opponent, and another in the fifth, when the Harlem lad again violated the rules.

On both occasions claims of foul were made to the referee. He, however, refused to allow them, believing they were accidental. He made it clear when he finally stopped the bout in the eighth round that he entertained no doubt on that point. Walking to the ropes on the south side of the ring, he said:--"Gentlemen, I am here to give satisfaction. I know when a foul is deliberately committed and when it is not. The foul I just passed was one of the most deliberate I ever saw."

White's speech was loudly applauded, indicating that losers and winners alike recognized the fairness of his verdict.

The fight was full of ginger throughout, but the rules operated greatly to the disadvantage of Harris. The men fought with the understanding that each must protect himself on the break away. This helped Murphy's style of fighting considerably, as it enabled him to do fine execution at close range and in clinches with his famous short arm drives.

Harris, who shows to better advantage when sparring at long range, had few opportunities to extend himself to the limit of capabilities under the adverse conditions. Notwithstanding the handicap, he made a good showing, but Murphy had the better of the exchange, particularly during the early rounds, when he almost closed Harris' right eye and landed frequently with the left to the head and the right to the short ribs.

The fifth round was marked by terrific fighting. Harris scored heavily during the first minute and a half, using his straight left jabs effectively on his adversary's jaw and body. But he weakened under the pace and Murphy had him beaten to a state of collapse with short heart and body blows when the gong sounded. The minute's rest helped Harris wonderfully and he came out of his corner for the sixth round refreshed and aggressive.

He soon scored first blood with a stiff jab to the mouth, and also reached Murphy's jaw with the right. He also made a good impression in the seventh round with a terrific left hand hook over "Harlem Tommy's" right eye.

In the eighth and what proved to be the last round Harris was scoring vigorously on Murphy's damaged eye, when "Tommy," who was hard pressed, in danger of serious consequences, deliberately brought his left hand up in the final foul.

1907-06-04 The Evening World (New York, NY) (page 12)
Pride of Harlem Butted Opponent Viciously in Eighth Round--Referee White Says that Loser's Manager Is a Liar.
Harry Harris got a decision over Tommy Murphy last night--got it when he was on the run, weak and staggering--when his mind was fighting off the Harlem demon rather than his fists. Murphy fouled him in the eighth round. The referee did the rest. It was a deliberate foul, as plain as the glove on Murphy's hand.

Nettled by the decision against Murphy, John Oliver, his manager, declared that the "Pride of Harlem" had been made the victim of a base and foul job. This is what Oliver said:

"A few days ago the Harris people sent a man to me, who offered me $3,000 to have Murphy lay down. I told them there wasn't enough money on Broadway to get Murphy to do it. And this is what they have done to us."

"Oliver's cry is that of a bad loser," said Tom O'Rourke, manager of the club. "The man he says offered him the money hasn't got a dollar. Everybody here saw the foul. It is ridiculous to say it was a job. All my friends lost money. They bet 2½ to 1 that Murphy would win."

Johnnie White, the referee, had this to say to-day about the fight:

"Having heard that Johnnie Oliver, Murphy's manager, has made the statement that he was offered $3,000 to have Murphy lose to Harris, I call upon Oliver to give the name of the person who made the proposition to him. If he refuses to make known this name, then all I have to say is that he is an unqualified liar.

"I desire to add that I have ample reason to believe that the yarn is false from beginning to end. I will give $500 to any charity selected by The Evening World if Oliver can come forward with evidence to show that his statement is true, or that I was in any way a party to such a plot."

All Saw the Foul.

If there was a job it was not apparent to the naked eye. Referee Johnny White had two chances to disqualify Murphy. Twice Harris stopped and dropped to his knees, claiming he had been hit low. And finally, when he did disqualify Murphy, even the men who had lost their wagers--and thousands were lost--took their medicine gracefully. They had witnessed the foul.

The National Sporting Club's quarters in Lyric Hall, Sixth avenue and Forty-second street, were crowded to the doors when the men entered the ring. It was a curious fight crowd. Only the elect were there. The pikers were nowhere. It was a crowd with parlor manners. The lusty-lunged hysterical fight fans of the olden days, when the Horton law was young, sat subdued and quiet. It is doubtful if at any stage the pedestrians on Sixth avenue knew, or had any reason to know, what was going on.

Three Champions There.

It was a convention of champions. Three of 'em sat in a row--wee dusky George Dixon, once invincible, now aged and withered; the quiet and well fed looking Young Corbett, and "Terrible" Terry McGovern. Surrounding them were lawyers and doctors--the highball coterie from the Waldorf-Astoria cafe, headliners from the Broadway shows, and the "also rans" of the sporting world, and last, but not least, John Philip Sousa.

Harris was the first in the ring. Norman Selby, once Kid McCoy, was his chief second. Then came Murphy, with Oliver at his ear. When they went to the centre of the ring it became known that they were to fight straight Queensberry rules. The Harris followers were chagrined. All hope of victory seemed gone. Murphy was known to be a furious and powerful combatant at that aggressive game.

Alongside of the stocky Murphy Harris's lithe, rangy body was accentuated. He spelled agility, Murphy power. When the bell sounded in the first of the ten rounds they were scheduled to go, Murphy was after Harris with a rush. Two lefts and then another crashed into the tall fighter's face, and then a vicious swing struck the body. The tall one doubled up, and they were at it in a rapid exchange of body blows. In a minute Harris's body was red from the pummeling he got. Then suddenly Harris's left shot out, and Murphy's head went back from the blow. But the Harlem boy came rushing back, and with a left to the jaw sent Harris staggering back. It was Murphy's round on aggressiveness.

Another for Murphy.

Murphy's left smashed into Harris's jaw at the beginning of the second. They came together and had a fair exchange. Then Murphy forced Harris to the ropes and shook his head back with a hard one on the jaw. Harris came out of the clinch with a jab to the face. It annoyed Murphy and was back again. But a short right uppercut stopped Harris. That round was Murphy's, too.

During the intermission the Harris followers became jubilant. The Harris of old seemed to be coming back. So far the sturdy Murphy, although his blows had landed hard, gave no sign of telling effect. Murphy's followers expressed surprise.

Murphy sent in a hard right to the body at the beginning of the third. Then out came Harris's jab again. Once, twice, three times it crashed against Murphy's face without return. Murphy, with head down and arms swinging, bored in to the tall one and suddenly Harris dropped to his knees and dragging himself to the ropes cried "foul." The crowd took up the cry, but the referee ordered Harris to continue. Murphy landed a terrific punch in the stomach. The bell parted a mix up. It was Murphy's round.

Murphy jumped from his chair with the gong at the beginning of the fourth and chased Harris around the ring. Harris kept him away with his annoying jabs, but when they clinched he suffered from Murphy's body blows. One fist after the other crashed against his heart and stomach and he began to grow weak. But suddenly his left found Murphy's jaw and then his right swing over for the first time. The round ended in a draw.

Another Cry of Foul.

The fifth started with a terrific exchange. Harris's wind was gone. He was getting wobbly and on the defensive. Murphy was fighting like a demon. Then Harris fell again, crying "Foul!"

Instantly two of his seconds were in the ring protesting to the referee. The house was in an uproar, "Give the decision to Murphy!" cried one crowd. "Give the decision to Harris!" cried the other faction. The referee shooed the seconds out of the ring and forced Harris to go on. That was Murphy's round.

Murphy leaped at Harris in the sixth. He seemed eager to finish it. He landed blow after blow and Harris clung to him in distress. At times he struck out, but all his steam was gone. All the way it was Murphy's round. Skill and pluck saved Harris.

In the seventh Harris came to life again. At the beginning he got the worst of the exchanges in the clinches, but he went after Murphy with his annoying jabs again. Murphy jarred him with a right to the head, but he came back with a terrific right to Murphy's stomach. Harris jabbed Murphy. When they came out of a clinch Murphy had a cut over the right eye. Harris's right eye was closed. It had been closing slowly for several seconds. The round was a draw.

The eighth round brought the thrilling climax. Murphy sent his left to the jaw and Harris landed two rights. They came together and clinched and fought around the ring. Then Murphy bored in again.

Murphy rushed in with his head down. As his gloves struck Harris he suddenly shot his head into Harris's face. Referee White promptly disqualified him, sending men to their corners.

Crowd Was Surprised.

The unexpected termination dazed the Murphy backers. It was some seconds before they recovered. They made a howl, but were quickly silenced. Referee White raised his hands and the noise subsided.

"Gentlemen, " said White, "I try to be fair, but I never saw a more deliberate foul, and my duty was plain."

Johnny Oliver jumped into the ring and protested to White, but his argument had no effect, and he finally led Murphy away. The crowd applauded both fighters. In his dressing-room Murphy made this explanation:

"He fouled me all through the fight. I never knew a fouler fighter. He gouged me, crushed my nose with his hand, and even bent back my fingers. And he butted me, too. That is how I got this cut over my eye."

The astute Kid McCoy made this characteristic explanation:

"Fouling may be all right if you can get away with it. Murphy got caught with the goods."

In the semi-windup Jack Robinson bested Dutch Zimmer. There were two other six round bouts. Bant Darcy defeated Joe Bedell, and Kid Eagan had a shade on Harry Phillips.

1907-06-04 The New York Times (New York, NY) (page 8)
1907-06-04 The Standard Union (Brooklyn, NY) (page 8)
Disqualified in Lively Contest with Harris for Fouling.

In a most unsatisfactory ten-round bout Harry Harris, the elongated boxer of Chicago, defeated Tommy Murphy, "the Pride of Harlem," in the eighth round on a foul before the National Sporting Club at Lyric Hall last night. Murphy was disqualified for using his head while in a clinch. Whether the foul was intentional or not the spectators could not decide, but Referee Johnny White declared that it was, and made the announcement from the ring. Up to this time Murphy had a commanding lead and looked as if he had the encounter well in hand. The fight was a vicious affair, in which many hard punches were exchanged. Murphy was the most prolific with his blows, ripping his man with telling effect in nearly every round save the seventh.

In this period Harris caught Murphy on the right eye with a left hook, inflicting a deep gash.

From the outset Murphy cut out the pace, slashing away at Harris' body and head. Murphy connected exceptionally well at close range, Harris being unable to avoid Murphy's jarring jolts to the jaw and chin. As they agreed to battle under straight Marquis of Queensbury rules, this was permissible under the code. In order to escape this punishment, Harris had to resort to clinching, and displayed some strength while in this position.

Murphy made a rushing scrap of it from the first round. He plied both hands with lightning-like rapidity. If the rules had been religiously observed, Harris should have been the loser in the fifth. In this round, after Murphy caught Harris a hard right in the wind which dropped Harry, the latter's seconds raised a cry of foul and rushed pellmell into the ring. The referee pushed them back. The combat was also delayed in the third, when Harris claimed that Murphy had caught him below the belt. The blow was a sort of glancing one, and Harris dropped into his chair, to all appearances in agony.

There is no question regarding Harris's gameness. He withstood enough grueling during the fight to subdue five ordinary men, the beating about the body and face that Murphy administered being especially severe. Murphy's soporific left hooks played havoc with Harry's countenance, so much so that when Harris retired to his dressing room his lips were considerably puffed and his visage was marked and bruised.

1907-06-04 The Washington Times (Washington, DC) (page 8)
Tommy Murphy, However, Put Up Far the Best Fight.

NEW YORK, June 4.--Tommy Murphy lost to Harry Harris on a foul in the eighth round last night at Tom O'Rourke's National Club, which holds forth at Lyric Hall.

The boys were to have boxed ten rounds, but after a very shameful exhibition on the side of both men the Harlem boy lost for butting his opponent with his head in a clinch.

For the real, active merits in the boxing line Murphy proved himself far the better man, but after being butted himself and choked with the elbow, he tried to even things up--and he lost out. Referee Johnny White, after the fight, announced that it was the most deliberate foul he had ever seen and as he was there to see fair play, he gave the fight to Harris.

Mr. White may mean well, but he didn't give Tommy a square deal on the rules or else we read the rules wrong.

In the fifth round Murphy hit Harris a bit low, and the latter claimed a foul. Mr. White decided that there was no foul, and then two of Harris' seconds jumped into the ring, ran across to their man and yelled wildly at the referee for allowing such a thing to pass his notice. Mr. White told them to get out, and ordered the boys to fight.

Tom Sharkey won over Jim Corbett the night Jim's seconds entered the arena after Jim was pretty well mussed up, but then they might have changed the rules since. Mr. White will have to enlighten us a bit on that affair.

Just before that in the third round, when Harris had one of his eyes closed, Murphy missed a low punch and Harry, seeing a chance to cop, walked to his corner with an expression of pain on his face. The referee let him rest half a minute or so and then ordered him to fight amid loud protests from the Harris men.

If Murphy fouled him Harris should have won. If Murphy did not foul him, why was Harris allowed a rest?

It is only fair to ask such questions, for the rules were stretched so far last night. Mr. White was right in ordering Harris to fight, however, as he was not hurt in the least and no punch landed on him. Quite a number of foxy fighters have won bouts this way, but then those at the ringside are not all blind, even though some up there last night were crazy enough to bet two and one-half to one that Murphy would win.

1907-06-05 The Denver Post (Denver, CO) (page 11)
Explains Alleged Fake Go
McDonald Wanted Murphy to Lay Down-Offered Him $3,000.
(By Tad.)

New York, June 5.--The suspicious circumstances surrounding the fight between Tommy Murphy and Harry Harris, in which the Harlem boy lost on a foul, before the National Sporting club, were explained today by Johnny Oliver, the manager of Murphy, who said: "last Friday a man known as McDonald, and a former newspaper man, came to me at the New Polo Athletic club and said: 'Oliver, will you take $3,000 to have Murphy lay down in his fight with Harris? Just let him put a bandage around his bad leg and when the time comes he can go down for the count.'

"I told him that we were not in that kind of business. McDonald did not explain to me anything about the details of the matter."

1907-06-05 The Evening World (New York, NY) (page 12)
To the safe and sane these things rise from the Harris-Murphy aftermath:

Tommy Murphy fouled Harry Harris, and was caught with the goods.

Harry Harris's seconds jumped into the ring and so disqualified Harris, according to the technical interpretation of the rules.


Any reasonable fight fan knows that all rules, all laws, are flexible to the application of common sense. Johnny White employed common sense. He knew that Harris's seconds were hysterical--he knew that the men who climbed into the ring were merely bottle-holders, and that Kid McCoy--the real second, the chief handler--had not violated the rules. He knew that a literal interpretation of the rule would mean that a dishonest second could finish any fight at any stage.
No matter how much Harris bruised Murphy in the clinches, no matter how foul Harris fought, the fact remains that Murphy's attempt at foul fighting was so flagrant the referee's duty was clear. Retaliation is no excuse for Murphy.

Oliver says he was offered $3,000 to lay down. He didn't take it. No man who saw the fight dare say that either man pulled. And no man of reason will condemn Johnny White for his part. It was a mighty fine thing that he was in the ring.

They are fighting around New York now. But if we have any more exhibitions of the Harris-Murphy sort it is likely that our fighting interests will once more take a train for Philadelphia.
  H. B.

1907-06-05 The Standard Union (Brooklyn, NY) (page 8)
Johnny Oliver, manager of Tommy Murphy, the "Pride of Harlem," who lost to Harry Harris on a foul at Tom O'Rourke's National Club Monday night, stated immediately after the bout that a man, whose name he gave, came up and offered him $3,000 if he would have Murphy lose to Harris.

There is heavy betting on all the bouts at the National Sporting Club.

Monday night Murphy was held favorite at 2½ and even 3 to 1. As fast as this price was offered by the admirers of the Harlem fighter it was taken in fifties and hundreds. Several of those near the ring held hundreds of dollars in cash, besides the thousands that were bet all over the hall, either in cash or "finger betting."

It was remarked that there never seemed to be a lack of Harris money, though the fight experts present gave him only an outside chance.

In the judgment of most of those present this opinion was vindicated, for Harris was badly beaten when Referee Johnny White gave the battle to Harris on a foul in the eighth round. Murphy was disqualified for butting Harris under the chin after Harris had butted him over the eye, opening a gash an inch long, from which the blood flowed down and blinded the Harlem man.

1907-06-05 The Washington Times (Washington, DC) (page 8)
Murphy-Harris Fight Has a Decidedly Bad Look.

NEW YORK, June 5.--Up and down Broadway yesterday there was nothing but talk of the Murphy-Harris fight. Some were for Harris straight, place, and show, while others took the Murphy end with its queer angles.

Just why the referee allowed Harris to butt Murphy and let it go on is still unanswered. Just why the referee allowed Harris' seconds to scamper about the ring in the fifth round and then chase them out without giving the fight to Murphy is still among the unanswered.

Johnny Oliver was the sorest man in town last night.

"I don't want to say that Murphy was double crossed," says Oliver, "but it certainly looks funny. When I refused the $3,000 offer which was made to me to have Tommy lay down, I thought we would get an even break, and the best man would win. Tommy did win by a mile, but he lost anyway. We should have won the fight twice on a foul, but when I made a kick to the referee, he wouldn't even listen to me."

One of the Harris' brokers last night at the Cadillac said that Murphy did everything but pull a knife on Harry in that fight. He said that Harris was getting better from the sixth on and Murphy, seeing no chance to knock him out, tried every dirty trick he knew.

To be fair to both sides, it was a very dirty exhibition after the sixth round. Harris used his elbow and tried to break Murphy's back over the ropes, butted him, and then got the same thing himself. If two professional pugilists can't engage in a bout without such tactics they should retire. There are plenty of clean fighters.
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           How Privatization Could Spell the End of Democracy   
Between Trump and tech, never before have so many powerful people been so intent on transforming government into a business.

It’s a hot day in New York City. You’re thirsty, but your water bottle is empty. So you walk into a store and place your bottle in a machine. You activate the machine with an app on your phone, and it fills your bottle with tap water. Now you are no longer thirsty.

This is the future envisioned by the founders of a startup called Reefill. If the premise sounds oddly familiar, that’s because it is: Reefill has reinvented the water fountain as a Bluetooth-enabled subscription service. Customers pay $1.99 a month for the privilege of using its machines, located at participating businesses around Manhattan.

Predictably, the company has already come in for its fair share of ridicule. In Slate, Henry Grabar called it “tap water in a suit”. But while Reefill is a particularly cartoonish example, its basic business model is a popular one within tech. The playbook is simple: take a public service and build a private, app-powered version of it.

he most obvious examples are Uber and Lyft, which aspire not merely to eliminate the taxi industry, but to replace public transportation. They’re slowly succeeding: municipalities around America are now subsidizing ride-hailing fares instead of running public buses. And earlier this year, Lyft began offering a fixed-route, flat-rate service called Lyft Shuttle in Chicago and San Francisco – an aggressive bid to poach more riders from public transit.

These companies wouldn’t have customers if better public alternatives existed. It can be hard to find a water fountain in Manhattan, and public transit in American cities ranges from mediocre to nonexistent. But solving these problems by ceding them to the private sector ensures that public services will continue to deteriorate until they disappear.

Decades of defunding and outsourcing have already pushed public services to the brink. Now, fortified with piles of investor cash and the smartphone, tech companies are trying to finish them off.

Proponents of privatization believe this is a good thing. For years, they have advanced the argument that business will always perform a given task better than government, whether it’s running buses or schools, supplying healthcare or housing. The public sector is sclerotic, wasteful and undisciplined by the profit motive. The private sector is dynamic, innovative and, above all, efficient.

This belief has become common sense in political life. It is widely shared by the country’s elite, and has guided much policymaking over the past several decades. But like most of our governing myths, it collapses on closer inspection.

No word is invoked more frequently or more fervently by apostles of privatization than efficiency. Yet this is a strange basis on which to build their case, given the fact that public services are often more efficient than private ones. Take healthcare. The United States has one of the least efficient systems on the planet: we spend more money on healthcare than anyone else, and in return we receive some of the worst health outcomes in the west. Not coincidentally, we also have the most privatized healthcare system in the advanced world. By contrast, the UK spends a fraction of what we do and achieves far better results. It also happens to provision healthcare as a public service. Somehow, the absence of the profit motive has not produced an epidemic of inefficiency in British healthcare. Meanwhile, we pay nearly $10,000 per capita and a staggering 17% of our GDP to achieve a life expectancy somewhere between that of Costa Rica and Cuba.

A profit-driven system doesn’t mean we get more for our money – it means someone gets to make more money off of us. The healthcare industry posts record profits and rewards its chief executives with the highest salaries in the country. It takes a peculiar frame of mind to see this arrangement as anything resembling efficient.

Attacking public services on the grounds of efficiency isn’t just incorrect, however – it’s beside the point. Decades of neoliberalism have corroded our capacity to think in non-economic terms. We’ve been taught that all fields of human life should be organized as markets, and that government should be run like a business. This ideology has found its perverse culmination in the figure of Donald Trump, a celebrity billionaire with no prior political experience who catapulted himself into the White House by invoking his expertise as an businessman. The premise of Trump’s campaign was that America didn’t need a president – it needed a CEO.

Nowhere is the neoliberal faith embodied by Trump more deeply felt than in Silicon Valley. Tech entrepreneurs work tirelessly to turn more of our lives into markets and devote enormous resources towards “disrupting” government by privatizing its functions. Perhaps this is why, despite Silicon Valley’s veneer of liberal cosmopolitanism, it has a certain affinity for the president. On Monday, Trump met with top executives from Apple, Amazon, Google and other major tech firms to explore how to “unleash the creativity of the private sector to provide citizen services”, in the words of Jared Kushner. Between Trump and tech, never before have so many powerful people been so intent on transforming government into a business.

But government isn’t a business; it’s a different kind of machine. At its worst, it can be repressive and corrupt and autocratic. At its best, it can be an invaluable tool for developing and sustaining a democratic society. Among other things, this includes ensuring that everyone receives the resources they need to exercise the freedoms on which democracy depends. When we privatize public services, we don’t just risk replacing them with less efficient alternatives – we risk damaging democracy itself.

If this seems like a stretch, that’s because pundits and politicians have spent decades defining the idea of democracy downwards. It has come to mean little more than holding elections every few years. But this is the absolute minimum of democracy’s meaning. Its Greek root translates to “rule of the people” – not rule by certain people, such as the rich (plutocracy) or the priests (theocracy), but by all people. Democracy describes a way of organizing society in which the whole of the people determine how society should be organized.

What does this have to do with buses or schools or hospitals or houses? In a democracy, everyone gets to participate in the decisions that affect their lives. But that’s impossible if people don’t have access to the goods they need to survive – if they’re hungry or homeless or sick. And the reality is that when goods are rationed by the market, fewer people have access to them. Markets are places of winners and losers. You don’t get what you need – you get what you can afford.

By contrast, public services offer a more equitable way to satisfy basic needs. By taking things off the market, government can democratize access to the resources that people rely on to lead reasonably dignified lives. Those resources can be offered cheap or free, funded by progressive taxation. They can also be managed by publicly accountable institutions led by elected officials, or subject to more direct mechanisms of popular control.

These ideas are considered wildly radical in American politics. Yet other places around the world have implemented them with great success. When Oxfam surveyed more than 100 countries, they discovered that public services significantly reduce economic inequality. They shrink the distance between rich and poor by lowering the cost of living. They empower working people by making their survival less dependent on their bosses and landlords and creditors. Perhaps most importantly, they entitle citizens to a share of society’s wealth and a say over how it’s used.

But where will the money come from? This is the perennial question, posed whenever someone suggests raising the welfare state above a whisper. Fortunately, it has a simple answer. The United States is the richest country in the history of the world. It is so rich, in fact, that its richest people can afford to pour billions of dollars into a company such as Uber, which loses billions of dollars each year, in the hopes of getting just a little bit richer. In the face of such extravagance, diverting a modest portion of the prosperity we produce in common toward services that benefit everyone shouldn’t be controversial. It’s a small price to pay for making democracy mean more than a hollow slogan, or a sick joke.




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El control demográfico en Israel

Lidón Soriano

Los últimos días de la brigada los hemos dedicado a recorrer y conocer las realidades de los territorios del 48. Es decir, los territorios que los sionistas, junto con la ONU, robaron de manera brutal a los y las palestinas entre noviembre de 1947 y enero de 1949, lo que se conoce actualmente como Israel.

Es más interesante llamarles así: "territorios del 48". Porque es una forma, por un lado, de seguir denunciando el expolio que sufrió el pueblo palestino en esa época (recordando que esas tierras también son Palestina) y, por otro lado, de invisibilizar a "Israel", de negarle el menor atisbo de legitimidad, de normalización. Evitar fisicalizarlo, sencillamente ignorarlo, y si se le nombra, que sea para denunciar su existencia y sus políticas. Ni olvido, ni perdón.

En los territorios del 48, el gobierno israelí lleva a cabo, una vez más, una política racista con la poblacion que allí vive, incluso con parte de la población judía. No tiene la misma consideración un judío blanco, que un judío etiope o un judío iraquí que, obviamente, son considerados inferiores. Por lo tanto, es fácil imaginarse como tratan a la población palestina.

En los territorios del 48 viven aproximadamente 1 millón 200 mil palestinos y palestinas, de los cuales unos 250 mil son desplazados que, además de ser tratados como ciudadanos de segunda, son considerados como enemigos, "el enemigo interior". De hecho parece ser que el proyecto sionista planea transferir en los próximos años a la mayor parte de población palestina de los territorios del 48 a los guettos de Cisjordania y Gaza.

Para ello, como es fácil imaginar, están llevando a cabo políticas discriminatorias y humillantes con la población. Ya que no pueden exterminar físicamente a toda la población palestina, lo que realmente desearían (Ha'aratez magazin 9 enero 2004), les van haciendo la vida cada vez más difícil e insoportable, hasta el punto de que finalmente sean ellos y ellas las que decidan marcharse.

De cara al exterior el plan es perfecto, pues su maquinaria propagandística oculta todas las políticas israelíes causantes de esta emigración y desde fuera se puede percibir como que de 'motu propio" la población palestina se marcha a otros países.

Y es que la batalla demográfica es una de las más importantes para Israel. La ley del derecho al retorno, aprobada en 1950, por la que todo judío tiene derecho a convertirse en ciudadano israelí, ya llevaba ese sello.

En 2002, tras un estudio que demostró que el ritmo de crecimiento demográfico entre la población palestina era superior al ritmo de crecimiento judío, se reactivó el "Israel Council for Demography", implantando políticas de ayuda a la maternidad para fomentar la natalidad israelí y así "preservar el caracter judío del estado".

En 2003, B. Netanyahu afirmó públicamente, en una conferencia en Herziliya sobre asuntos de seguridad, que la demografía se había convertido en un problema para Israel.

El 27 de julio de este año, el Knesset aprobó una enmienda a la ley de Reunificaion Familiar del 2002, por la que a los hombres menores de 35 años y las mujeres menores de 25, nacidos en los territorios de 1967, les está totalmente prohibido obtener la nacionalidad israelí incluso si están casados o van a casarse con un palestino/a israelí. De modo que unos no pueden residir en los territorios del 48, y otros, los palestinos y palestinas nacidos en esos territorios, no pueden residir en los territorios del 67, y así nos encontramos con parejas y familias que o uno de los dos miembros vive de manera ilegal, o tienen que separarse por orden del gobierno iraelí. Aproximadamente unas 1.000 parejas se encuentran en esta situación segun el centro de Derechos Humanos de Nazareth.

El 4 de abril de este año, Sharon afirmó que no hacía falta disfrazar estas políticas demográficas como de "seguridad". Confirmando que, sencillamente, eran necesarias para mantener la naturaleza del Estado de Israel.

Anteayer, declaró que en 10 años conseguirían traer a un millón de judíos a vivir a Israel (sólo ayer, según fuentes palestinas llegaron 300 judíos franceses, directos a las colonias de Cisjordania). Si a eso le sumamos la limpieza étnica que Israel lleva a cabo con la población palestina nos encontramos con que realmente Israel concibe este tema como de máxima prioridad y está utilizando todas sus armas para ganar esta batalla.

Y es que la eliminación de la población palestina ha sido desde el 47 el principal objetivo sionista, para así poder certificar su famosa frase de "una tierra sin pueblo, para un pueblo sin tierra".

Afortunadamente la población palestina es de casi 5 millones entre los territorios ocupados en el 67 y en el 48. Y la mayoría va a continuar ejerciendo su derecho a resistir, va a continuar luchando, sencillamente con su presencia.

Algunos ejemplos de las políticas de Israel hacia la población palestina los encontramos en el mercado laboral. Los y las palestinas no pueden acceder a ningún trabajo institucional gubernamental, incluso algunas empresas, directamente, no contratan a población árabe. Los puestos de responsibilidad les están prácticamente vetados y la mayoría tienen dificultades para encontrar trabajo como licenciados o doctores.

En educación la discriminación es fácilmente apreciable. Los y las estudiantes palestinas tienen una red educativa diferente de la judía, con unas infraestructuras obsoletas e insuficientes. El curriculum les viene impuesto por Israel y los profesores los pone el departamente de seguridad interior, todas las asignaturas se dan en hebreo, incluido el árabe. Los recursos que se dedican son infinitamente inferiores a los que se dedican para los colegios judíos y la red educativa sólo abarca hasta secundaria. Las universidades son todas judías y los filtros para la población árabe son muy duros, a parte de las humillaciones que los y las estudiantes palestinas sufren en los campus. Además no les permiten entrar en algunas carreras por lo que las personas que quieren cursar estos estudios se tienen que marchar, por ejemplo, a Jordania.

A nivel presupuestario, y aunque la población árabe paga los mismos impuestos que la población israelí, el Knesset sólo dedica entre el 3-10% del total del presupuesto a la comunidad árabe palestina y, normalmente, los proyectos que se aprueban en el Parlamento para mejorar las condiciones de la población árabe nunca se llevan a cabo.

Israel tiene 30 leyes de confiscación y los motivos son de lo mas irrisorio: desde haber pintado la casa de un determinado color, a haber reparado una grieta en el tejado sin el obligatorio permiso israelí (que, por otra parte, nunca llega), pasando por la ley del ausente u otras tantas más. Por si esto fuera poco, si además de confiscarte la casa te la destruyen, después van a buscarte para que corras con los gastos de los bulldozers y las escavadoras.

Estas politicas son fácilmente apreciables simplemente paseando por las ciudades. En Haifa, con población palestina y judía, en seguida te das cuenta de por cual barrio estás pasando, pues los barrios árabes los tienen abandonados (no hay recogida de basuras todos los días, los edificios están descuidados y hasta las farolas y las papeleras son diferentes, mas feas y medio rotas). En Akko, una ciudad al noroeste de los territorios del 48, el barrio árabe ubicado en el casco viejo con un lindo puerto y unas murallas históricas preciosas, está completamente abandonado. El gobierno no se preocupa en absoluto de limpiarlo, cuidarlo y rehabilitarlo. Si a todo esto le sumamos que los impuestos que tienen que pagar son muy elevados y que mucha gente no tiene trabajo o lo tiene pero con salarios muy bajos, nos encontramos con otra política de limpieza étnica, sutil y efectiva.

En este marco sociopolítico, encontramos con la realidad de los pueblos no reconocidos. Es decir, pueblos que físicamente existen pero que Israel no reconoce ni sitúa en el mapa. A pesar de pagar sus impuestos estos pueblos no reciben ningún tipo de infraestructuras, ni carreteras, ni desagües, ni canalizaciones de agua, y tampoco reciben servicios ni de educacion, ni de salud. Nada, sencillamente son ignorados. En la actualidad hay casi un centenar de pueblos no reconocidos en los territorios del 48, de ellos unos 40 están ubicados en el desierto del Neguev, con las consiguientes dificultades que ello conlleva.

Una vez más se puede comprobar cómo a pesar de todas las políticas de exterminio que Israel lleva a cabo contra la población palestina, ésta resiste. Y es que, como ellos y ellas dicen, no se trata de ser símbolos, ni héroes o heroinas, solo de ser personas y vivir en paz en su tierra. En una tierra donde quepan todas las personas bajo unos principios de justicia social y repeto.

Un amigo palestino me comentaba que su mayor sueño era poder sentarse a la sombra de un olivo en su pueblo, del que su familia fue expulsada en el 48. A leer un libro tranquilo, en paz y sin la presencia de israelíes.

Creo que es tambien el deseo de todas y todos, que Palestina vuelva a ser de los palestinos y palestinas y que construyan su presente, su futuro y recuperen su pasado. Israel no es un "estado" más, es un proyecto imperialista para controlar todos los recursos del mundo árabe. Este conflicto no es un problema religioso, ni un choque de civilizaciones, es el imperialismo contra todas y todos.

Por eso la lucha del pueblo palestino es la lucha de todos los pueblos por la autodeterminación, contra la opresión, contra el imperialismo. Por eso, Palestina va en el corazón de los y las que luchan.

¡Resistir es vencer!

          Doctor Fucks Teen Girl On Bed   
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           Investigation into corrosion protection by coatings using the electrochemical noise method    
Mabbutt, S. J. (2000) Investigation into corrosion protection by coatings using the electrochemical noise method. Doctoral thesis. University of Leicester.
          How Effective Leaders Achieve Success in Critical Change Initiatives, Part 4: Emergent Leadership - An Example with Doctors   
Engaging family doctors in clinical practice innovations has often been seen to be a difficult challenge. It is happening in some creative ways with the Hamilton Family Health Team. &nbsp; The approaches to leadership and change in Hamilton are similar to those stated in Starfield Consulting's recent study Beyond Boundaries: Lessons from Leaders (King and Peterson 2006). In that study, we identified common characteristics and behaviours of leaders who had successfully implemented complex change in public service and healthcare systems. Research interviews were conducted with 40 leaders who each had successfully led a change initiative involving multiple organizations, jurisdictions or highly siloed functions within an organization. A full copy of the original research study can be found at <a href="http://www.starfield.ca" target="_blank">www.starfield.ca</a>. &nbsp; This is the fourth and last article in this series. It provides an example of the value of emergent leadership and identifies some factors that help set the conditions for such leadership to emerge. The interviews were conducted recently and hence go beyond the original study. The article illustrates how Ontario's Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care, some of the original leaders in the Hamilton Team and Chief Executive Officer Terry McCarthy have created an environment that fosters emergent leadership. Their approach has accelerated the delivery of both increased access and improved patient care. &nbsp;
          El actor de «The Big Bang Theory» Johnny Galecki pierde su casa en un incendio   
La casa de uno de los protagonistas de la famosa serie de televisión «The Big Bang Theory», Johnny Galecki que interpreta al doctor Leonard Hofstadter, quedó totalmente en ruinas debido a un incendio forestal declarado en California. El fuego se propagó por toda la costa central del estado y arrasó numerosas viviendas y edificaciones, entre las que se encontraba la del actor, ubicada en un rancho en la zona de San Luis Obispo, según informó su portavoz Nicole Perna. «Mi corazón está con todos lo que sufrieron pérdidas por el incendio en esa área y que vivimos con la constante amenaza del fuego. Lo que parece una locura para algunos, pero lo hacemos porque vivimos en una hermosa área rural que vale la pena», dijo el actor Galecki al tabloide TMZ. Y agregó: «No son las edificaciones las que forman una comunidad, son las personas y la gente de Santa Margarita las que me han enseñado que cuando se va el humo es el momento de salir y reconstruir». Las autoridades ordenaron el desalojo de más de 252 residente en la zona de Santa Margarita tras el incendio, que comenzó durante la tarde del lunes. El pasado martes por la noche se registró un incendio de 6.5 kilómetros cuadrados, el cual se encontraba controlado en un 60%. Por el momento no se conocen los detalles sobre las pérdidas materiales puesto que los daños totales provocados por un incendio no suelen evaluarse hasta que no esté extinguido completamente. El actor, como el resto de afectados, todavía no ha podido entrar a su propiedad para ver cuál es el estado de situación. «Lo hemos hecho antes y habrá que hacerlo juntos de nuevo, y hará que nuestra comunidad sea incluso más cercana y más fuerte. Un sinfín de gracias a CalFire y a la Oficina del Sheriff. Sé que ustedes están luchando una buena batalla para mantenernos a salvo. Así que estoy muy aliviado de que nadie haya resultado herido», finalizó Johnny Galecki, uno de los actores de series mejor pagados de la televisión.
          America's Top Family Doctor Reinventing Surgeon General Role    
America's Top Family Doctor Reinventing Surgeon General Role
          Teen Gets Hard Anal from her Doctor   
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          Comment on The Other Side of the Speculum: A Male Doctor’s Point of View | forwomenseyesonly by lydia   
          The Athlete's Foot & Health Literacy - PediaCast 354   
October is Health Literacy Month! What exactly is health literacy and why is it important? Dr Mary Ann Abrams and Dr Alex Rakowsky stop by the studio to share their experience and perspective. The Sports Doctor, Bob Weil, also visits this week as we consider common problems of the athlete’s foot. We hope you can join us!
          Cough Medicine, Younger Siblings, Residency Training - PediaCast 343   
Join Dr Mike in the PediaCast Studio for more News Parents (and Providers) Can Use! This week we cover Zika Virus and Microcephaly (with a research update!), allergy risk based on season of birth, hearing loss and nutritional supplements, cough and cold medications, younger siblings & obesity, the sugar content of fruit drinks, and helping young doctors become better parents.
          Woman Doctor 2   
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          The Sports Medicine Team - PediaCast 332   
Guest Host Dr Eric Bowman joins Dr Mike, along with Dr James MacDonald and Athletic Trainer Gail Swisher. Our topic this week is the Sports Medicine Team. Who are the folks who care for your kids on the playing field? What kind of training do they have? How do they decide what sort of treatment your child needs—a bandage on the sidelines, an urgent care trip, the emergency room, your regular doctor, or a sports medicine clinic? And speaking of the clinic, who works there? What roles do they play? And what can you expect from a visit? If your child plays sports… or plans to play sports… it’s an episode of PediaCast you don’t want to miss!
          The Vaccine War - PediaCast 329   
New York Times Best-Selling author and investigative journalist, Seth Mnookin, drops by the PediaCast Studio to talk about his latest book on the vaccine-autism controversy. Hear the events that ignited and fuel the anti-vaccine movement. Why are parents distrustful of science? And what can moms and dads and doctors and scientists and journalists do to promote evidence as we seek best outcomes for our children? It’s an episode of PediaCast you don’t want to miss!
          Infant Fever - PediaCast 305   
Dr Dan Cohen and Dr Prashant Mahajan join Dr Mike in the PediaCast Studio to discuss traditional and emerging technologies in the evaluation and management of young infants with fever. We’ll answer the usual questions surrounding baby fever: how high is too high and when should you call your doctor? In addition, advanced topics include molecular assays, polymerase chain reactions, microarray analysis and biosignatures. Be sure to stop by!
          Doctors Teaching Doctors - PediaCast 303   
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          The Female Athlete Triad - PediaCast 285   
Dr Stacy Fischer and Jessica Buschmann join Dr Mike in the PediaCast Studio to discuss The Female Athlete Triad. What is it? Who’s at risk? How is it treated? And how can doctors, parents, coaches, and teammates recognize the disorder and intervene before it’s too late? Also discussed: distracted teenage drivers.
          Infantile Spasms - PediaCast 281   
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          Influenza, RSV, Croup - PediaCast 276   
Welcome to PediaCast 2014! We kick off the year with a Listener Edition of the program. Topics include skin wounds, finger gnawing (yes, you read that right), and a nuts and bolts approach to influenza, RSV, and croup. We also discuss daily routines… and The Best Doctors in America. Join us!
          Listener Question Marathon - PediaCast 273   
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          Pediatric Residency Training - PediaCast 220   
Dr John Mahan and Dr Tricia Lucin visit the PediaCast Studio today to discuss pediatric residency training. We’ll de-mystify the black box that produces American doctors and give you an insider’s look at living the life of a resident. For those interested in pursuing a career in pediatrics, we’ll provide hints on what makes a strong program and describe the many career opportunities available to those who finish a pediatric residency.
          Batteries, Music, Autism - PediaCast 213   
This week on PediaCast… Join Dr Mike in the studio as we cover News Parents Can Use. Topics include The Wishing Tree Project, battery-related emergency department visits, video games, cerebral palsy, music therapy, baby brain development, schoolyards, autism, and compulsory physical education. All this plus pay-to-play sports policies keeping kids off the team… And could school-based health clinics replace the doctor’s office?

part of the Mystic Passions boxset
by Nikki Lynn Barrett

Genre: Paranormal Romantic Suspense

I was somewhat normal once.
Until I died.
It was only for a few minutes, but ever since then, I can see ghosts.
The first time I see her is in the cemetery, wearing a blood stained wedding dress. 
No one else knows she exists.
I have no idea how to help her or why I chose to, but she's here now.
The one person who makes me feel alive for the first time in ages is a spirit trapped in her own version of hell with no recollection of her life or death.

It sounds like the start of a horror novel or something.
I'm the amnesiac ghost bride who wakes up with no memory of my life or death. 
Only one person can see me.
With no clues as to who I am or how I wound up in this predicament, Scott is my only chance of helping to unlock my memories. 
It's not easy. He's sarcastic and jaded.
But he's the only link I have to the living world.


I remember nothing.

A cold blanket of fog surrounds me as I sit up from the hard surface I must have been sleeping on, wearing a wedding gown, once white, now stained in red. My mind races a mile a minute, scrambling to retrieve a memory of what happened, like a dog scampering for his ball, but I come up empty.

Who the hell am I?

Where am I?

What happened to me?

Why is no one here?

Another thing that catches my attention right away is the fact that I look like death, but I feel nothing. Based on the condition of the wedding dress, whatever happened must have been brutal.

Nothing at all. No aches. No pains.

Okay, fine. Maybe the blood isn't mine, but that means it's someone else's, and I have no idea who, what, when....

I'm repeating myself.

Rather easy to do when I am trying to piece together the missing fragments that make up my life.

I stand with ease and interpret my surroundings. It's dark and foggy. Cold winds snap in my face. Shivers slam my body relentlessly. Maybe that's shock, though. How can I feel a chill when there's pretty much no other feeling?

Not that I expect an answer, but I call out, “Someone help me!” My voice brings no recognition. Not even a spark of who I am.

Panic settles over me.

My mind is blank. Empty.

How do I not have any memories? Did I fall? Crash? Hit my head? There's no pain, but that doesn't mean anything. Maybe shock has taken away the ability to feel pain. But I'm cold. So that's something.

Next step, check my body for wounds. My hands travel up and down my torso, searching for any tender spots or any blood seeping from an open injury. There's nothing. Absolutely nothing. This isn't promising. It doesn't calm my chaotic mind.

Before I go into a full blown panic meltdown, I stop and listen. There are voices. People talking. 
This is my chance!

“Hey! Can anyone hear me?” I scream into the foggy abyss.

No one responds, at least, not to me. The talking continues. Someone is sobbing hysterically, and it's most definitely not me.

I can't see them, and I don't think they can see me. Still, I scream and cry, running frantically until I can find someone.

I shouldn't be able to move this easily. I shouldn't feel nothing. Not with blood on my dress. One would think I rolled around in a pool of it. This isn't a few drops, I look like I bathed in it.

There's a crowd of people huddled together, surrounding something. And they're crying. Bowed heads, gut wrenching sobs.

I'm in a graveyard.

In front of the crowd of people is a coffin.

Is that me in there? Am I dead? Is that why I'm here?

I run … well, I don't even know if I'm running, because hell, I don't know if I'm alive, to the crowd. I'm like an animal ready to pounce at the first sight of a person.

“Somebody! Please tell me you can see me!” I scream, waving my hands.

No one turns my way. No one flinches. It's as if I'm invisible, which I think is becoming more and more likely. Because I'm dead. I have to be. It's the only explanation I can come up with, not that it's an option I'm happy to think about. I don't know who I am. How did I get here? Why does it seem like my memories are wiped clean?

How did I die?

Chapter 1


Why do people say rest in peace to the dead? They don't rest in peace. How do I know? Because I can fucking see ghosts. The ghosts who seek me out aren't at peace. It takes time and a willing human to help them find that peace. I'm not willing, but they don't leave me alone. I've never been a big people person, and I'm sure as hell not a 'ghost' person, but does that stop them? Nope. Not in the least.

It hasn't always been this way. Only in the past three years have I been able to see the dead.

I blame it on the fact that I died once. For ten minutes, until doctors managed to resuscitate my sorry ass.

Today is the day we're burying my uncle Floyd. It's cloudy, and a slight drizzle is spraying us with a light mist.

There are ghosts everywhere.

I've learned to ignore them, for the most part. They find me no matter where I go. I can't even take a shit without a ghost appearing, frantic for help because they eventually know I can see them. That stupid split second where I let my weakness show, and they descend upon me like a vulture chasing its prey.

Not only have I come back from the dead, but the dead want me. Sure, fine. Why not? No one else does. Not for me, anyway. My parents ignore me until they see fit to have their son at all of their important events. Other than that, I'm an outcast. Pretty much used to it. They throw money at me and tell me to have a good day.

I thought when I died and had my life flash before my eyes, it would change. It did for a little while. Then they went back to normal. Work, work, work. At least, for Dad, that was the case. Mom did her little parties and women's charities and pretended like she gave a shit about all of it.

She goes to the bar and screws the bartender. Dad pretends not to notice.

Want to know how they gain sympathy?

By using me.

“My son Scott has a hard time of it. I think he's gone a little crazy.” I heard my mother tell someone this a few months ago. I'll never confront her on it. What the hell is the point?

Living with this shit is crappy, but it is what it is. One day soon, I'll blow out of town and make a new life. Maybe I'll even be famous and my parents will come begging for my forgiveness.


Aunt Sara steps forward and places a rose on Uncle Floyd's casket. She's sobbing hard. Together for thirty-nine years, his sudden death is devastating on all of us. Floyd was the only one who gave a rat's ass about me. We always did stuff together. He gave me my first cigar, and we got drunk together once when I was seventeen.

It dawns on me then. Why don't I see his spirit?

I finally look around, knowing all too well these other spirits are gonna have a field day with this. I'm not about to make myself look crazy in front of family and friends. Not today, of all days.

Shudders ripple through my body. Damn, some of these deaths were gruesome. Not only can I see the ghosts, but I see them in their death form.

Blood. Torn skin. I won't go on. The visuals churn acid in my stomach. Gotta give credit to doctors. I couldn't do it. I'm not even good with scary movies. They make me want to hurl.

Trying to stay casual, I scan the cemetery for any signs of my uncle. There are none. Disappointment settles in the core of my soul. I have this 'gift' of being able to see spirits, but the one I would actually love to see, I don't get to.

There's a young woman in a blood stained wedding dress, and she's waving her hands frantically. Why this one grabs my attention over all the others is beyond me, but she does. I can't tear my eyes away from her.

She notices that I see her, and relief floods her eyes.

Before she can get to me, a hand lands on my shoulder. “You all right, son?” Dad's concern is almost genuinely touching. Too bad I call bullshit. It's all for show.

“You know the answer to that,” I snap as I jerk my shoulder away. Too much crap within the last few years has left me jaded. It can't even be denied.

Dad gives me a cold look, like he can't even believe I got upset at him. Instead of arguing, he pivots and storms off. What does he expect? Seriously!

Whatever. Let them go off. I came in my own car, and I don't have to answer to anyone.

The woman spirit is still there, frozen in the same place. I only have eyes for her. Her mouth opens in shock as I strut toward her. “Y-You can see me?”

Ah, a first timer. She has no idea where she is or what's happened. Confusion taunts her pretty green eyes.

“Wish I couldn't, but yes.”

She frowns. “Does that mean I'm dead? No one else can see me.”

“Fraid so.” No point in beating around the bush.

“That funeral over there isn't mine, is it?” she whispers.

“No. It's for my uncle.” Back at the grave site, most of my family has already left. The empty spot and the coffin ready to be lowered in the ground breaks me a little more inside. At least Uncle Floyd lived a damn good life. I loved his stories. If my aunt knew half the shit he did even while married, she'd have a stroke.

The more I think about it, the more it seems the ghosts who come to me have unfinished business. That show Ghost Whisperer comes to mind, except it's been recent for me to be able to see them.

“Why can you see me?”

Ha! I've only been asking that question since the first ghost. “You tell me.”
She narrows her eyes. “You're not very nice.”

I'm not nice? That's my uncle buried over there, and I'm talking to a ghost. Wanna try that again?” Frustration pumps through my body.

“At least you aren't dead! I don't even know who I am!” she shoots back.

Touche. Despite my irritation, Ghost Bride makes a valid point.

“You put things into perspective for me there,” I admit, scratching at the back of my neck. The rain doesn't hold off. Too much more of this and I'll have to leave. What's stopping me from doing so already? Why does this one ghost gravitate toward me above all others today? “You don't remember anything about who you are and how you died?”

She shakes her head. “I woke up in a foggy abyss. I don't feel pain, even though it looks like I died in a horrible way. I wonder where my husband or husband-to-be is.”

My gaze flits to her left hand. No ring. Hmm. Interesting. “You don't even have an engagement ring on your hand.”

She gasps and raises her hand. “You're right. So maybe I ran from him.”

“A paranormal version of runaway bride? Hmm.” The words tumble from my lips before I can even think about how callous I'm being.

“Ugh. You're not one to hold back, are you?” Ghost Bride mutters in disgust.

“I'm talking to a ghost. Do you expect me to be a perfect gentleman?” I retort.

“I guess not,” she relents.

“You're going to follow me if I leave, aren't you?” Most of them do. Why bother asking?

“I- I don't know. Can I even do that?”

Newbie ghost problems. “Wouldn't be the first. I can't speak from a ghost perspective, but they never leave me alone.”

“Have you always been able to see us?”

There we go. The loaded question. Man, spirits are damn talkative. “Nope. Just a couple years.”

Wait for it....

Holy hell. She's silent. Ghost Bride doesn't ask me why it's only been recent.

I'm impressed.

My next words surprise me. Damn, I'm a sucker. “I don't want to get drenched, but I'm not about to leave you here alone and confused. You can go home with me, and we'll figure out who you are and how to get you to wherever it is you need to go.”

Her eyes light up. “Thank you, thank you, thank you!” And then she tries to hug me. Ghost Bride's hands go right through me. I'm used to it, but she isn't.

She gasps, stepping back. “Okay, that's weird.”

“Right, so...let's go.” I gesture to the parking lot, which is fairly empty now.

“Umm...” Ghost Bride hesitates. “How exactly do I do this?”

Another sigh escapes me. Newbie ghost problems, and it's like I have the answers. Why do I do this to myself?

Interested in reading this book when the entire boxset releases in July?


No matter where she goes, USA Today Bestselling author Nikki Lynn Barrett hears voices in her head. Instead of calling her crazy and locking her up, her family realizes it's just a product of being an author and allows her to write the stories so that the voices shut up.

But they don't. And probably never will. There's no need to lock her up, Nikki knows she'll never escape the voices, not until each and every last story is written. And for every story she writes, about ten or more ideas pop up.

When she isn't slaving away at her computer writing books that will probably make you cry and keep you in suspense, Nikki plots to take over the world one book at a time. What? It's a sickness. One she can't escape!

Books aren't her only addiction, though. Nikki can be found making up parodies to drive her son crazy, and bantering back and forth with her husband, who somehow manages to steal her away from the fictional world she lives in all the time.

Nikki lives in Arizona with her husband and son, where she can be found using every creativity outlet she can find through music, photography, handcrafted things, and random interests that she may pick up from time to time.

If you want to learn more about the author who makes people cry for a living, check out her website.

          Oh, to be home.   
'Oh, we don't want to lose you...'
(Paul Reubens)
'I shall go home, alone;
And must try to live life as before,
And hide my grief
For you, my dearest friend,
Who should be with me now,
Not cold, too soon,
And in your grave,
Alone.' (Guy Wilson)
O western wind, when wilt thou blow
    That the small rain down can rain?
Christ, that my love were in my arms
    And I in my bed again!
Does home seep beyond the clothing of our mortal flesh, permeating that hidden heart of the everlasting soul? If ghosts retain their human feelings, would those feelings drive them to try to go home? Would they long for it, as those of us who love our homes and yet must venture far from them, so long to return? So much WWI and WWII war propaganda billed the home as that which one must be prepared to sacrifice in order to maintain it when threatened. The homestead itself became a thing of essential essence, the very threads we contribute to the tapestry of our collective, lived landscapes. The sanctity of home to everyday men and women became the lynchpin for duty; the sacred crux of society. It is hardly surprising that home became a central fantasy for those soldiers, sailors, airmen, doctors, nurses, etc., and the haunting presence of such is liberally scattered through the artefacts they created abroad: letters, diary entries, poetry. The consequences of WWI and WWII was that a large portion of men and women, who ventured bravely from their homes to save them, would never return. And, in turn, those gaping absences would change the homes of those left behind forever.
These thoughts were compounded by the chance discovery of a small entry concerning the ghost of Rupert Brookes (contributed by Dr A.I. Copeland to Marchioness Townshend & Maude Ffoulkes' True Ghost Stories, first published by Hutchinson & Company in 1936). Copeland's experience occurred in 1919, four years after Brookes had died from blood poisoning following an infected mosquito bite in Greece. The story itself is a simply one: Copeland was renting rooms in the Old Vicarage, in Grantchester, where Brookes had formerly lived. One evening, whilst sitting by the fire, Copeland heard the sound of footsteps making their way around the house toward the French windows of his sitting room. Upon inspection, no one was there, and it seemed impossible that anyone could have made those footsteps and found cover before he looked through the windows. When enquiring of this to his landlord, a Mr Neave, he was promptly told that such an occasion was not unusual, and that, since Brookes had died, his footsteps had often been heard making the same journey. 
Brookes seems the ideal candidate for such a haunting. His poetry reveals a deep, romantic affection for England; a sentiment that seems to have resonated in him from early life. While some of Brookes' work has been sucked into nationalist thinking (indeed, a good chunk of his poetry is explicitly patriotic, and compounds the obligation to fight for one's country), I think what he communicates is the tenderness of remembered belonging in a time where place and self have been fractured, of being connected to a sense of home that extends the premise of bricks and mortar and reaches into all the nooks and crannies of the land itself. It is the waiting glue that will fix the wounded traveller when they are able to return, as well as the very beacon that calls them to return. This sense of home becomes an essence, something intangible that is carried in the mind, that stretches a non-corporeal chord to anchor in the familiar. It becomes an icon, to glorify, that gives meaning to the horrendous agonies caused in war. Of course, 'England' and 'home' mean more than their physical manifestations; they mean people, lifestyles, a continuation of history.
In The Soldier, Brookes writes
  If I should die, think only this of me:
    That there's some corner of a foreign field
That is forever England. There shall be
    In that rich earth a richer dust concealed;
A dust whom England bore, shaped, made aware,
    Gave, once, her flowers to love, her ways to roam,
A body of England's, breathing English air,
    Washed by the rivers, blest by the suns of home.
Death in war can give rise to a plethora of ghosts, for the dead are not accorded with the burial rites attributed by their society, and so cannot be properly passed over by their living kith and kin. In Brookes' poem, the dead body becomes synonymous with its home, that 'bore [it], shaped [it], made [it] aware'. He recognises the fear and tragedy of dying away from home, of being potentially lost in a 'corner of a foreign field'. Recently, having been attuned to memorials as part of my book's research, I've been touched by the number of beautiful WWI and WWII memorials that exist to commemorate legacy and sacrifice where bodies cannot be lovingly tucked into their native earth. There is a bounty of these memorials, strewn throughout the landscape, each settlement offering up its recognition of all that was given to preserve it. What do we do when we don't have the body to bury? We make memorials, and we encourage our fellows to never forget. Remembrance is the best we can do to give the dead their dues, and to note and reward their sacrifice.  
WWI and WWII created mammoth craters of absence, and during a time when the comforting afterlife suggested by Christianity was a crumbling on its platform as that pedestal began to tip away from certainty, its framework coming increasingly into scientific questioning. I'm a fan of the cosy crime genre, and am particularly fond of three series of books involving young female detectives in the early 20th century. Interestingly, now I think about it, that all three echo that absence. From Daisy Dalrymple in the 1920s, to Maisie Dobbs and Kate Shackleton in the 1930s, these three young women have all lost their fiancées/husbands to WWI. The Dalrymple series, which is lighter in tone, finds the heroine resettled with a widower, but Dobbs (in the early books) and Shackleton are cast adrift, unable to really invest in a new relationship as they are unable to let go of that planned future so cruelly shattered. Shackleton's position is more precarious, as her husband is listed as 'missing, presumed dead'. Again, without that certainty a body provides, time slips into a limbo. Instead of love, they turn to their work, and their desire to help those who have similarly been damaged by the aftermath of WWI.
These wars punched a hole in our history; they consumed a mass of lineages, leaving countless marriages broken, and hundreds and hundreds of children that would never be born. And those who came back did not meet what they had left behind: they were changed and this could not be undone. JRR Tolkien's Lord of the Rings demonstrates this, with his idyllic Shire a representation of an innocent, green, settled England. For ghosts, however, perhaps things continue as they were. If the 'stone tape' theory of ghost activity is true, then there is an echo of Brookes making his journey home, again and again, over and over. Imagining that, for a moment... and so, if some corner of a foreign field is forever England, then some corner is elevated to home.  
With proud thanksgiving, a mother for her children,
England mourns for her dead across the sea.
Flesh of her flesh they were, spirit of her spirit,
Fallen in the cause of the free.
(Robert Laurence Binyon)

          Fear walks abroad   
While my partner was busy mixing tracks for his next album, I found (at last) a full length Youtube posting of The Ghoul (1975). I had first seen this film in my early twenties - it was one of those late night distractions for insomniacs on a terrestrial television channel - but had been unable to locate a copy in DVD format to add to the ever growing swell of my vintage horror collection. Directed by Freddie Francis and released by Tyburn, The Ghoul is an unsettling slice of English horror that is, in my humble opinion, not as popular as it should be. It has a distinctly Hammer  aesthetic (unsurprisingly, as many Hammer associates were involved in the picture), with its old country house interior and period (1920s) setting, and a plot not overly dissimilar to Hammer classics like The Reptile. The connection between The Ghoul and The Reptile goes somewhat further than these visual and narrative links, and represents an interesting - albeit troubling - trend concerning the portrayal of non-European cultures (in these cases, societies associated with Hinduism) as sources of the macabre. In these examples such cultures bring evil and destruction into the otherwise civilised English landscape of the upper classes (NB - both films revolve around manor houses).

The Ghoul and The Reptile incorporate several interesting dynamics, and reflect themes concerning the loss of children and the infiltration of occult cult affiliation as a source of infection. Both films involve upper class fathers who are doctors, and the ghoul and reptile of the titles refer to the infected states and hideous metamorphosis of their children, who have been lured into cult membership while both families were abroad. Whilst haunted by the loss of their children, neither father can bring himself to be their ultimate destroyer, to sever the physical bond completely, and so remain benign in maintaining the new incarnations of their offspring. The Reptile's Dr Franklyn is contemptuous toward his daughter, who retains her former mortal form for long periods. The Ghoul's Dr Lawrence is more melancholic, clinging to Christian worship in his private chapel while victims are prepared and left for their murder and subsequent consumption by his son. While neither are exactly complicit, they ultimately allow the actions to take place, and for the cover ups concerning the nature of their children's victims' deaths.

Dr Franklyn (Noel Willman)
Dr Lawrence (Peter Cushing)

In the end, both fathers are ultimately destroyed with their children. Dr Franklyn attempts to kill his daughter, now in reptile form, but is bitten and dies shortly before a fire - which has broken out in the cellar where she rests - consumes the house. Dr Lawrence - who had promised his late wife that he would preserve their child - eventually kills his son, and shortly afterward, himself.

But, as both fathers are not active participants in their children's murderous activities, their safeguard and nurture comes from another source: in The Reptile, it is the Malay servant, whilst in The Ghoul it is the Indian former nursemaid referred to as Ayah, who now acts as housekeeper. These individuals are Asian natives devoid of their names in the English home, and both encourage the destructive actions of their white charges. The Reptile's servant is sinisterly dogmatic, and akin to manipulative master rather than second father figure, but The Ghoul's servant seems more readily surrogate mother, who prays for the appearance of the girl who will feed the ghoul, and tends to his every need.Ayah's religious affiliation (with a Shiva based death cult) is the more obvious of the two, and the incorporation of certain aesthetics, like statues, demonstrate the Hindu influence. The presence of non-European artefacts, and the knowledge and experiences cited by the fathers situates them as melancholic post-anthropologists, and these visuals suggest the quite literal presence of the Other entwined in the tapestry of their native home.

The Malay (Marne Maitland)

Ayah (Gwen Watford)

Rachel Fell McDermott's (2003) chapter in her co-edited volume Encountering Kali (with Jeffrey Kripal) has raised the issue of the misappropriation of Hindu beliefs in Western films, which may has sometimes provided a warped view of such god and goddess worship. She aptly demonstrates the problems with the demonic-esque Kali represented in films like Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom, and the barbaric nature of her followers. To rely on these interpretations alone is to subscribe to a Westernised whitewash that dilutes the essence of certain religious beliefs to their sinister undertones. Yes, there are dark tones in the pallet of Kali's divinity, but she is so much more than just a destroyer.

In The Ghoul and The Reptile, we should also be critical of the representation of non-Western based religions. The exoticness of other cultures and religious traditions is obviously a great source of fodder for film, and certainly seems more thought-invested than the contemporary repertoires of torture pornography and serial killer thriller (I have to admit a bias here, as I hate the latter kinds of films, and am prone to wax lyrical about how they have slashed the quality of the horror genre). Also, it is interesting to reflect upon the heights of the Western world's developing exoticised love affair with the 'Far East', who found in its cultural distance an unsanctioned playground for exploring new, lived esotericisms untarnished by post Enlightenment scientific rationalism.


These films are also melancholic psychodramas about the relationship between fathers and their children, children who have been lost to them by choosing to identify with an Otherness that ultimately supercedes their familial ties and Western identities.  Is there perhaps also an air of revenge against the colonial incorporated by these two servant characters (who, ultimately, have replaced the fathers as their children's guardians)? Considering that both servants are Indian natives, I wonder if it is possible to see the angry ghosts of colonial victims here, working their way through the micro-intimate fabric of English society, reducing the offspring of their oppressors to flesh eating ghouls and malicious reptiles. Of the two servants, I would argue that Ayah is the more complex: fierce mother? angry jailer? devoted nurse? Does she love the ghoulish charge she protects and feeds? This adds another layer to the dynamic, particularly pertinent considering that Dr Lawrence's wife had killed herself upon recognising the horrendous nature of the actions she undertook, and was connected to, when she and her son became part of the cult. With his father unable to truely fulfil his paternal role, perhaps Ayah steps out as a new mother, bonded by the son's new cult identity.

The Ghoul - Don Henderson

Anna Franklyn/The Reptile - Jacqueline Pierce

The loss encapsulated in these films is a loss that lingers in a spectral domain, and the characters exist in this world, and yet not entirely. Dr Lawrence is ultimately a recluse, with only Ayah and a cruel, moronic assitant for company. Dr Franklyn is abrupt, brooding and seemingly uninterested in long term social relationships. They are without their wives, who have perished long before the events of the film. Both are haunted by their secrets, which keep them apart from their English kith and kin, and both lament the people their secrets have corroded them into being. Both children are gone, lost to their fathers... but both fathers are unable, until the end, to acknowledge that loss and sever their paternal ties. And so, before these narratives come to an end, they are inbetwixt, tainted by the past that will ultimately deny their future.

by Alathia Paris Morgan

Genre: Paranormal Horror

Emma Jackson is an army wife and new mom with all the uncertainties that come with it… until that fear is pushed in a different direction. Instead of worrying about diapers and feeding schedules, her only objective is to keep her child alive after being chased by a man who looks entirely too dead.

Trish Walsh thought her day was bad when she had to drag all four of her children on an errand, but she rethinks the meaning after what she can only hope was someone dressed up like a zombie beats on her car door. Yet, the bloody mess left behind is anything but reassuring.

Cooper Walsh’s job is top secret. When criminals break in to steal his company’s secrets, he overhears the conspiracy devised to create chaos as a cover-up. Knowing he must do everything in his power to right the wrong, he sets out on a mission.

Surviving long enough to reunite with their families is all that matters. That… and stopping the zombie apocalypse before it destroys them.

It had only been six weeks since I’d had my baby. Today’s the day for my check up and to get the doctor’s okay to do some hanky panky with my hubby when he comes home. Well it won’t matter if I have a doctor’s note or not, my husband is back overseas with his unit. He was able to come home for a week when the baby was born, but he won’t be home for good anytime soon.

As I lay there waiting for the Gyno doctor to come and check me out in this flimsy little dress, I hear a commotion out in the hallway.

Hurried whispers and quick running footsteps down the hallway make me get up and tiptoe to the door in my bare feet. Cracking the door open I look toward the reception area, but all I can see is a stack of papers floating to the floor.

“What in the world?” I glance back to make sure the baby, Pierce, is still resting comfortably.

Hearing a scream from somewhere in the front, I decide the best course of action is to get dressed and put my tennis shoes back on. Flicking the lock closed, I got dressed in record time and collected my stuff as I headed back to the door.

Cautiously opening it, I couldn’t see anyone at all so I sling the diaper bag over one shoulder and my purse on the opposite side. Placing my phone in my back pocket and my keys in my hand, I hooked my arm through Pierce’s carrier and walked out into the hallway ready for anything.

It has gotten spookily quiet. There weren’t any voices or sounds coming from the reception area that had been filled only a half hour ago.

As I proceeded out through the now empty building, I wondered what had caused the evacuation.
Opening the front doors, I’m hit with sunshine.

“Shoot, I forgot the sunglasses.” Placing the baby down at my feet, I start to dig in the diaper bag when I notice a sound at the side of the building. Glancing up, there is a man walking toward me.

Wait, walking is a broad term for the way he is dragging his feet and lumbering towards me in a very aggressive manner and that is when I notice the blood dripping from his chest.

The screams now made sense. There must have been a shooting. While I would love to help, I have a new baby to protect and this guy is creeping me out, so I grab the carrier and make a run for the car.

Punching the button to unlock and open the van’s sliding doors, I am tempted to just place the carrier inside and buckle Pierce in a few blocks away, but it’s already so ingrained, the need to secure him, so I go ahead even though it will take a few seconds longer.

Sure enough the bloody guy is following me to my car. I open my door and jump in hitting the locks and praying this guy doesn’t have a gun on him.

I place the vehicle in drive and screech out of the parking lot which I’ve never done before because it takes the tire tread off and that’s just wasteful.

As I head toward my home, I realize there is a lot of traffic out on the road and people look really panicked.

The highway is congested and I’m getting a really bad feeling about this so I decide to take the back roads to my home, which is thankfully only about ten minutes away.

Alathia is known to those around her for having an a long time love affair/obsession with Dr. Pepper, she has asked to be buried with a can so that it never runs out in the after life. Always bossy, she uses her mothering instincts to help others and share awareness of abuse in child and domestic situations.

A B.S. in History and English gave wings to her vivid imagination in book form. A supportive and loving husband has given her the chance to make her dreams a reality. Their three daughters and three dogs keep her busy while writing is a great way for her to wind down and destress.




Genre: Historical Fiction

He’s too much a REBEL! I could never love anyone as inconsiderate and rash or coarse.

Such a ROGUE. I can’t abide someone who can’t or won’t follow the rules or obey the law of the land.

His smile, his soft voice, those gentle words… He’s so ROMANTIC. How could I ever resist? Who cares if he’s a rebel or a rogue?

REBELS, ROGUES, AND ROMANTICS Throughout history, women have been susceptible to their charms. Share the adventures of a few of the more memorable ones in this collection of historical tales written by award winning authors:

Dani Haviland, USA Today Bestselling author. The Cherokee call him Dances Naked. Can this crazy white man help his new friends with their dilemma of near starvation and what to do with the two white women who want to join their tribe? A time travel novel.

Taylor Lee, USA Today Bestselling author. Aces Wild. They call him Angel, but every woman he meets sees the devil in his eyes. Angel’s Avengers Book 1. A sizzling historical romantic suspense novel.

Katy Walters, USA Today Bestselling author. Return to Rhonan. Inspired by the Land Clearances in Scotland, this supernatural story of love, passion, hauntings, terror and retribution will have you gripping your Kindle. First book in The Lords of Rhonan Regency romance suspense series.

Michele Hauf, USA Today Bestselling author. Tame Me Not. Headstrong, free, and untamed. Can she win the musketeer’s heart? Book 1 in The Saint-Sylvestres historical romance set.

Suzanne Jenkins, award-winning author, The Liberation of Ravenna Morton. Ravenna would rather not have to deal with secrets from her lifelong affair with Mike, but granddaughter Esme has different ideas as she digs to uncover the tragedies of Ravenna Morton’s youth. A Native American historical romance based in Michigan.

Amazon ✯ Amazon Int'l  Goodreads

Dani Haviland recently semi-retired from selling tractors, tools, and roses in Alaska to pursue her passions of writing, gardening, and photography in the temperate climate (and flowers) of western Oregon.

USA Today Best Selling author Taylor Lee has written more than forty Suspenseful Mystery Thrillers – with a heavy dose of Sexy to Sizzling HOT Romance. Taylor says “My characters are dangerous men and women in dangerous times. Love, passion and ridding the world of evil? What’s not to like?

USA Today Best-Selling author, Katy Walters e.books, and paperbacks are purchased and read in their thousands on Amazon and Kindle Unlimited. Katy lives in the midst of Regency towns on the South Coast of England. Her main interests are historical; contemporary suspense romance, and time travel. She is equally drawn to the paranormal based on mythology and the Dark Ages. 
After studying at various universities Katy was awarded a B.A Hons (psych) B.A.(Soc.) B.A. Eng Lit & Creative Writing and an M.A. She was also awarded a Doctor of Science (Hon) for research into pain control.

Award-winning author, Michele Hauf has written over 80 novels and novellas in historical, fantasy, paranormal and romantic suspense.

Suzanne Jenkins Bio Suzanne writes page-turning contemporary romance, mystery, and women's fiction with passionately gripping characters that stay with readers long after they turn the last page. The Detroit Detective Stories, beginning with The Greeks of Beaubien Street are a reflection of American fantasy with historical reality. Pam of Babylon books consistently rank in the Top 100 Best Sellers in American Drama with over 500,000 downloads. A retired operating room nurse, Jenkins lives in Southern California.

Goodreads ✯ Twitter ✯ Facebook ✯ Amazon ✯ Website

Tami 1

          Fake Doctor Crosses The Line   
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          Norovirus Infection: A Cause for Travelers' Concern?   
Title: Norovirus Infection: A Cause for Travelers' Concern?
Category: Doctor's & Expert's views on Symptoms
Created: 3/7/2008 12:00:00 AM
Last Editorial Review: 3/30/2017 12:00:00 AM
          Busty Patient Akane Yoshinaga Gangbang in Doctors Morning Visit   
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          Doctor Puts Woman in Sleep at Gyno Exam and Fucks Her   
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          Alive and Shine with Aadil and Savitri!: Interview with Dr. Ted Morter III   
HostAadil interviews this master instructor, trainer, author, researcher, and Doctor of Chiropractic - Dr. Ted. Morter III. Dr. Ted healed his own serious lower back injury using his mind, and is now considered one of the nation's top personal and professional development coaches. Learn why people say "fix your head with Dr. Ted"
Time for another update.
The weather's been all over the place since Christmas. We've had -18*c, snow, sleet, sun and all the rest. For the last week or so the temperature's been above zero everyday but that only means that the germs can start breeding, hence I've got a broncchial infection which has really knocked me off my feet but went to doctors today and got sorted with antibiotics so should start picking up soon.
Since Tony went back to England Erika and I started sleeping in the basement room so that I could finish our bedroom. Unfortunately that hasn't happened yet so we've moved back up there until I feel better as it's warmer upstairs. We've also had to buy more wood for our fire as we were nearly out. This arrived last Wednesday and is still waiting to be stacked.
We've had lots of positive comments on our other blog to promote the rental of this house....but no bookings yet lol.
We'd thought of flying back to England for a break during the half term holidays but then found out that they don't have them here. The next proper holiday is summer so not sure what we'll do yet. We have found a carrier who'll deliver the rest of our belongings from England to Sirok for around £300 which is great as I don't have to drag the trailer back and forth with our unreliable car. We just need to sort out dates etc for him to collect and deliver.
          Doctors Short Skirt Provoked Japanese Man To React This Way   
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          My Friend and Sherpa, Mingma Chhring   
Mingma Chhring

Mingma Chhring does not know what year he was born in. The Sherpa culture places no importance on such things. Though he believes he was born on May 5, Birthdays are not celebrated. I would guess him to be in his early thirties, but the age-defying characteristics of his people make such an estimate at best approximate. 

Born in Phortse, Nepal, Mingma grew up with 8 brothers and 1 sister. Two of his brothers died from disease as children, and one was killed while leading a climb on the notoriously dangerous Anna Purna. Mingma did not attend school until joining the Tengboche Monastery in 1996, where he studied to become a Monk. But at that time the Monastery did not receive donations from visitors to offset their expenses. So each student was required to pay $1,000 a year. After 5 years of study Mingma was no longer able to raise the tuition . He returned home to Phortse.

Mingma was then hired by International Mountain Guides as a load carrying Sherpa in 2001. Working mostly out of Tibet, he took part in expeditions on Everest, Ama Dablam, Manaslu, and Cho Oyu. Mingma worked hard to learn English and distinguished himself as tireless at high altitude. Attending the Khumbu Climbing School the following January, Mingma returned as a Guiding Sherpa in 2002 and summited Everest for the first time. With the exception of 2005, when he tried working as an Electrician in his home village of Phortse, Mingma has successfully led an IMG Everest client to the world’s highest summit each year for an incredible record of 10 out of 10 attempts. 

Mingma likes Guiding but knows it is a dangerous job. He says his wife and two sons understand the risks he takes, but also realize this is the best way for him to make money for the family. His sons talk about following in his footsteps and becoming climbing Guides one day, but Mingma has forbid it. “This is a danger job,” he tells them, “and I want you to become a Doctor or Engineer.” He hopes they will go to America to start their careers. “They can be comfortable there, have a car and some money and same freedoms as here in Nepal,” he says.  Mingma and his wife, who runs their small vegetable farm in Phortse, pay a yearly tuition of $1,500 U.S. for each boy to attend a boarding school in Kathmandu where they are learning English, Nepali, Tibetan, Math, History, and Science. The School is called Mount Kailash. It is difficult for Mingma and his wife to raise the funds for tuition each year and he has asked me to mention in this article that they would welcome any sponsorship the Readers of this blog might be willing to offer. You can contact the Mount Kailash school directly at http://www.nepalyp.com/company/31601/Mount_Kailash_School if you wish to do so. 

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          Thomas Aquinas (1225-1274)   
Dari Wikipedia bahasa Indonesia, ensiklopedia bebas

Thomas Aquinas (1225-1274) adalah seorang filsuf dan teolog dari Italia yang sangat berpengaruh pada abad pertengahan. Karya Thomas Aquinas yang terkenal adalah Summa Theologiae (1273). Buku ini merupakan sintesis dari filsafat Aristoteles dan ajaran Gereja Kristen. Pada tahun 1879, ajaran-ajarannya dijadikan sebagai ajaran yang sah dalam Gereja Katolik Roma oleh Paus Leo XIII. Thomas Aquinas juga disebut Thomas dari Aquino (bahasa Italia: Tommaso d’Aquino).

Kehidupan Thomas Aquinas
Aquinas dilahirkan di Roccasecca dekat Napoli, Italia.[1] dalam keluarga bangsawan Aquino.[2] Ayahnya ialah Pangeran Landulf dari Aquino dan ibunya bernama Countess Teodora Carracciolo.[3] Kedua orang tuanya adalah orang Kristen Katolik yang saleh. Itulah sebabnya anaknya, Thomas, pada umur lima tahun diserahkan ke biara Benedictus di Monte Cassino untuk dibina agar kelak menjadi seorang biarawan. [3] Setelah sepuluh tahun Thomas berada di Monte Cassino, ia dipindahkan ke Naples. Di sana ia belajar mengenai kesenian dan filsafat (1239-1244). [4] Selama di sana, ia mulai tertarik pada pekerjaan kerasulan gereja, dan ia berusaha untuk pindah ke Ordo Dominikan, suatu ordo yang sangat berperanan pada abad itu. Keinginannya tidak direstui oleh orang tuanya sehingga ia harus tinggal di Roccasecca setahun lebih lamanya. Namun, tekadnya sudah bulat sehingga orang tuanya menyerah kepada keinginan anaknya. Pada tahun 1245, Thomas resmi menjadi anggota Ordo Dominikan.
Sebagai anggota Ordo Dominikan, Thomas dikirim belajar pada Universitas Paris, sebuah universitas yang sangat terkemuka pada masa itu. Ia belajar di sana selama tiga tahun (1245 -- 1248).[4] Di sinilah ia berkenalan dengan Albertus Magnus yang memperkenalkan filsafat Aristoteles kepadanya.[5] Ia menemani Albertus Magnus memberikan kuliah di Studium Generale di Cologne, Perancis, pada tahun 1248 - 1252.
Pada tahun 1252, ia kembali ke Paris dan mulai memberi kuliah Biblika (1252-1254) dan Sentences, karangan Petrus Abelardus (1254-1256) di Konven St. Jacques, Paris.
Kecakapan Thomas sangat terkenal sehingga ia ditugaskan untuk memberikan kuliah-kuliah dalam bidang filsafat dan teologia di beberapa kota di Italia, seperti di Anagni, Orvieto, Roma, dan Viterbo, selama sepuluh tahun lamanya. Pada tahun 1269, Thomas dipanggil kembali ke Paris. Ia hanya tiga tahun berada di sana karena pada tahun 1272 ia ditugaskan untuk membuka sebuah sekolah Dominikan di Naples.[3]
Dalam perjalanan menuju ke Konsili Lyons, tiba-tiba Thomas sakit dan meninggal di biara Fossanuova, 7 Maret 1274.[4] Paus Yohanes XXII mengangkat Thomas sebagai orang kudus pada tahun 1323

Ajaran Thomas Aquinas
Thomas mengajarkan Allah sebagai "ada yang tak terbatas" (ipsum esse subsistens). Allah adalah "dzat yang tertinggi", yang memunyai keadaan yang paling tinggi. Allah adalah penggerak yang tidak bergerak. Tampak sekali pengaruh filsafat Aristoteles dalam pandangannya.
Dunia ini dan hidup manusia terbagi atas dua tingkat, yaitu tingkat adikodrati dan kodrati, tingkat atas dan bawah. Tingkat bawah (kodrati) hanya dapat dipahami dengan mempergunakan akal. Hidup kodrati ini kurang sempurna dan ia bisa menjadi sempurna kalau disempurnakan oleh hidup rahmat (adikodrati). "Tabiat kodrati bukan ditiadakan, melainkan disempurnakan oleh rahmat," demikian kata Thomas Aquinas.
Mengenai manusia, Thomas mengajarkan bahwa pada mulanya manusia memunyai hidup kodrati yang sempurna dan diberi rahmat Allah. Ketika manusia jatuh ke dalam dosa, rahmat Allah (rahmat adikodrati) itu hilang dan tabiat kodrati manusia menjadi kurang sempurna. Manusia tidak dapat lagi memenuhi hukum kasih tanpa bantuan rahmat adikodrati. Rahmat adikodrati itu ditawarkan kepada manusia lewat gereja. Dengan bantuan rahmat adikodrati itu manusia dikuatkan untuk mengerjakan keselamatannya dan memungkinkan manusia dimenangkan oleh Kristus.
Mengenai sakramen, ia berpendapat bahwa terdapat tujuh sakramen yang diperintahkan oleh Kristus, dan sakramen yang terpenting adalah Ekaristi (sacramentum sacramentorum). Rahmat adikodrati itu disalurkan kepada orang percaya lewat sakramen. Dengan menerima sakramen, orang mulai berjalan menuju kepada suatu kehidupan yang baru dan melakukan perbuatan-perbuatan baik yang menjadikan ia berkenan kepada Allah. Dengan demikian, rahmat adikodrati sangat penting karena manusia tidak bisa berbuat apa-apa yang baik tanpa rahmat yang dikaruniakan oleh Allah.
Gereja dipandangnya sebagai lembaga keselamatan yang tidak dapat berbuat salah dalam ajarannya. Paus memiliki kuasa yang tertinggi dalam gereja dan Pauslah satu-satunya pengajar yang tertinggi dalam gereja. Karya teologis Thomas yang sangat terkenal adalah "Summa Contra Gentiles" dan "Summa Theologia".
Salah satu filsuf Kristen yang mengkritik pemikiran Thomas Aquinas adalah Gordon H. Clark. Bukunya "God's Hammer" halaman 67 sampai 71 berisi kritikan beliau terhadap Thomas. Terjemahan bebas saya
"Dalam sejarah pemikiran Kristen, antithesis antara iman dan reason (akal budi) telah didekati dengan berbagai metode. Perdebatan antara sesama Kristen dan antara Kristen dengan kaum sekuler kadang-kadang mengakibatkan kebingungan karena istilah yang dipakai tidak selalu didefinisikan dengan jelas. Bukan hanya Agustinus dan Kant memiliki pandangan yang berbeda tentang natur iman, namun istilah akal budi (reason) sendiri menandung arti yang bermacam-macam. Setelah memberikan gambaran singkat tentang latar belakang historis, penulis berharap menghindari kebingungan seperti itu dengan mengemukakan definisi akal budi (reason) yang mungkin membantu pembelaan terhadap wahyu sebagai sesuatu yang rasional
Upaya Skolastik Abad Pertengahan Dalam gambaran historis singkat ini, metode untuk menghubungkan iman dan rasio yang pertama dibahas adalah filsafat Thomistik Gereja Roma Katolik. Selain persetujuan (assent) pribadi orang percaya, dalam system ini iman artinya informasi yang diwahyukan yang ada dalam Alkitab, tradisi, dan suara hidup dari gereja Roma. Akal budi artinya informasi yang dapat diperoleh melalui pengamatan inderawi terhadap alam dan diinterpretasi intelek. Rasionalis abad ketujuhbelas membedakan akal budi (reason) dengan sensasi [inderawi], Thomas membedakan akal budi (reason) dan wahyu. Kebenaran akal budi adalah kebenaran yang dapat diperoleh melalui kemampuan indera dan intelek alamiah manusia tanpa bantuan anugerah supranatural.
Definisi iman dan akal budi ini mengakibatkan wahyu hanya “tidak masuk akal” (unreasonable) secara verbal; wahyu tidak dapat disebut tidak masuk akal atau irasional dalam pengertian yang merendahkan. Kadang-kadang kita curiga kaum sekuler menggunakan verbalisme untuk memberikan kesan yang menakutkan.
Thomisme memang menekankan ketiadaan kompatibilitas antara iman dan akal budi, namun ketiadaan kompatibilitas itu bersifat psikologis semata. Kalau Alkitab mewahyukan bahwa Allah ada dan kita percaya Alkitab, maka kita memiliki kebenaran iman. Namun demikian, menurut Thomisme adalah memungkinkan untuk mendemonstrasikan keberadaan Allah melalui pengamatan terhadap alam. Aristoteles berhasil melakukannya. Namun, kalau seseorang telah secara rasional mendemonstrasikan proposisi ini, orang itu tidak lagi “percaya”, dia tidak lagi menerima proposisi itu berdasarkan otoritas; dia “mengetahui” proposisi itu. Secara psikologis tidak mungkin pada saat yang sama “percaya” dan “mengetahui” satu proposisi. Seorang guru mungkin memberitahu siswanya bahwa segitiga memiliki 180o dan sang siswa percaya perkataan sang guru; namun setelah si siswa mempelajari buktinya, maka dia tidak lagi menerima teorema berdasarkan kata-kata guru. Si siswa sudah mengetahui sendiri. Tidak semua proposisi wahyu dapat didemonstrasikan dengan filsafat rasional; tetapi ada kebenaran-kebenaran yang dapat didemonstrasikan yang juga telah diwahyukan kepada manusia, karena Allah tahu bahwa tidak semua orang memiliki kemampuan intelektual seperti Aristotle; karena itu Allah mewahyukan beberapa kebenaran itu, walaupun dapat didemonstrasikan, demi kebanyakan umat manusia.
Muatan (content) wahyu yang tidak dapat didemonstrasikan (seperti doktrin Trinitas dan sakramen), walaupun berada di luar jangkauan akal budi seperti definisi di atas, tidaklah irasional atau nonsensical. Kaum Muhammadean (Islam) Abad Pertengahan dan kaum humanis modern dapat saja mengklaim bahwa doktrin Trinitas tidak rasional, namun akal budi cukup mampu untuk mendemonstrasikan bahwa keberatan yang dikemukakan keliru/salah (fallacious). Kebenaran iman yang lebih tinggi tidak bertentangan dengan kesimpulan akal budi manapun; sebaliknya doktrin wahyu melengkapi apa yang tidak dapat dicapai oleh akal budi. Kedua rangkaian kebenaran ini, atau lebih tepatnya kebenaran yang diperoleh dari dua metode berbeda ini saling melengkapi. Bukannya menjadi penghalang bagi akal budi, iman berfungsi memberi peringatan kepada seorang pemikir bahwa dia melakukan kesalahan. Kita tidak boleh memandang seorang percaya sebagai seorang yang harus dibebaskan dari penjara imannya; iman hanya membatasi dari kesalahan. Dengan demikian iman dan akal budi serasi satu dengan yang lain.
Hanya satu kritik yang akan penulis kemukakan tentang sistem ini, tetapi kritik ini dipandang sangat penting oleh kaum Thomist dan penentangnya. Kalau argumune kosmologis bagi keberadaan Allah merupakan kesalahan logika, maka Thomisme dan pandangannya tentang hubungan antara iman dan akal budi tidak dapat dipertahankan .
Kesulitan yang dialami argumen kosmologis adalah ketidakmemadaian wahyu umum seperti dibahas sebelumnya. Kalau diasumsikan bahwa semua pengetahuan (knowledge) dimulai dengan pengalaman inderawi dan karena itu pada saat orang memandang alam tanpa pengetahuan tentang Allah, maka segala kemalangan (calamities) manusia dan keterbatasan serta perubahan di alam semesta – seberapapun luasnya galaksi-galaksi yang ada – menghalangi kesimpulan tentang satu pribadi Allah yang Mahakuasa dan juga Baik.
Terhadap keberatan-keberatan ini, yang dikemukakan dengan tajam oleh David Hume, dapat ditambahkan kritik khusus formulasi Aristotelian Thomas Aquinas. Tiga keberatan akan dikemukakan. Pertama, Thomisme tidak dapat bertahan tanpa konsep potentialitas (potentiality) dan aktualitas (actuality), namun Aristotle tidak pernah berhasil mendefinisikannya. Sebaliknya dia [Aristotle] mengilustrasikannya dengan perubahan fenomena lalu mendefinisikan perubahan atau gerak (motion) dalam hal aktualitas (actuality) dan potentialitas (potentiality). Untuk memberikan justifikasi terhadap keberatan ini, diperlukan terlalu banyak apparatus teknis yang tidak bisa diakomodasi dalam tulisan ini. Dan kalau pembaca menghendaki, dia tidak perlu memberi penekakan pada keberatan pertama.
Kedua, Thomas berargumentasi bahwa kalau kita melacak penyebab gerak (motion), kita tidak dapat meneruskan berjalan mundur tanpa batas. Alasan yang secara eksplisit diberikan dalam Summa Theologica untuk menyangkali hal itu adalah kalau hal itu terjadi maka tidak akan ada Penggerak/Penyebab Pertama (First Mover). Namun alasan yang digunakan sebagai premis ini jugalah yang digunakan sebagai kesimpulan di akhir argumen. Argumen ini dimaksudkan untuk membuktikan keberadaan First Mover, namun First Mover ini diasumsikan dulu sebagai sesuatu yang ada untuk menolak infinite regress (mundur tidak terbatas). Karena itu jelas argumen ini adalah sebuah kekeliruan (fallacy).
Alasan ketiga yang akan kita bahas lebih rumit. Namun karena terkait dengan hal yang banyak diperdebatkan saat ini, maka pantas diberikan perhatian lebih.
Bagi Thomas Aquinas, ada dua cara mengenal Allah. Pertama melalui teologi negatif. Hal itu tidak akan kita bahas di sini. Kedua melalui metode analogi. Karena Allah adalah pure being, tanpa bagian, yang esensiNya identik dengan keberadaanNya, maka istilah-istilah yang diterapkan pada Allah tidak dapat digunakan tepat dengan cara yang sama dengan pada saat diterapkan pada ciptaan. Kalau dikatakan bahwa seorang manusia bijaksana dan Allah bijaksana, harus diingat bahwa kebijaksanaan manusia adalah kebijaksanaan yang diperoleh/dipelajari, sementara itu Allah tidak pernah belajar. Pikiran manusia tunduk kepada kebenaran; kebenaran adalah pimpinannya. Namun pikiran Allah adalah penyebab kebenaran karena Allah memikirkannya, atau mungkin lebih baik diformulasikan, Allah adalah kebenaran. Karena itu istilah pikiran tidak memiliki arti yang tepat sama pada manusia dan pada Allah. Hal ini tidak hanya berlaku untuk istilah-istilah di atas, tetapi juga pada gagasan tentang eksistensi. Karena keberadaan Allah adalah esensiNya – identitas yang tidak dapat diduplikasikan- maka bahkan kata keberadaan (existence) tidak berlaku sama (univocal) pada Allah dan pada ciptaan.
Pada saat yang sama, Thomas tidak mengakui bahwa istilah-istilah itu juga memiliki arti berbeda sama sekali (equivocal). Pada saat dikatakan bahwa playboys lead fast lives, while ascetics fast, kata [fast] dalam kedua anak kalimat itu tidak memiliki arti yang sama. Walaupun huruf-huruf dan pengucapannya sama, kandungan intelektual dalam kedua anak kalimat itu berbeda sama sekali. Thomas memilih jalan tengah antara perbedaan makna (equivocation) dan kesatuan makna ketat (strict univocity) dengan mengatakan bahwa kata-kata bisa digunakan secara analogis; dan dalam hal Allah dan manusia, predikat yang digunakan diterapkan secara analogis.
Jika makna analogis dari bijaksana atau keberadaan memiliki bidang arti yang sama [bagi manusia dan Allah], maka bidang arti ini pasti dapat dikemukakan dengan menggunakan satu istilah yang berlaku untuk keduanya. Istilah ini dapat digunakan untuk Allah dan untuk manusia. Namun Thomas menekankan bahwa tidak ada istilah yang dapat diterapkan demikian. Implikasinya adalah semua sisa kemungkinan makna identik di antara keadaan terhapus. Namun kalau memang demikian adanya, bagaimanasebuah argument – argument kosmologis – secara formal syah kalau premis menggunakan satu istilah dengan pengertian tertentu dan dalam kesimpulannya menggunakan istilah yang sama dengan arti yang berbeda sama sekali? Premis argument kosmologis berbicara tentang eksistensi penggerak/penyebab (mover) dalam kisaran pengalaman manusia; kesimpulannya terkait dengan keberadaan Penggerak/Penyebab Pertama. Namun, jika istilah ini tidak dapat dipahami dengan pengertian yang sama, maka argument tersebut keliru/salah (fallacious).
Karena itu, upaya untuk secara Thomistik menghubungkan iman dan akal budi gagal – lebih karena pandangannya tentang akal budi dari pada terhadap iman-; perlu ada upaya lain untuk membela rasionalitas wahyu.

January 31st
St Thomas Aquinas
Happy Pesta St Thomas Aquinas! Sebagai mahasiswa pascasarjana dalam teologi, aku telah berdoa setiap hari untuk Thomas selama beberapa bulan terakhir. Dia menjadi sahabat saya dan pendoa syafaat dan telah membuat saya melalui beberapa masa sulit. Hari ini adalah hari raya dan saya berencana untuk merayakan dengan segenap hatimu, tapi pertama-tama, biarkan saya berbagi sedikit tentang dia.

Santo Thomas Aquinas adalah seorang imam abad ke-13 Dominika, filsuf, dan teolog. Sebagai Doktor Gereja, ia telah diberi gelar "Angelic Doctor" dan merupakan pelindung dari universitas Katolik dan sekolah. St Thomas peringkat di antara para penulis terbesar dan teolog sepanjang masa. Karyanya yang paling penting, Summa Theologiae, penjelasan dan ringkasan dari seluruh tubuh dari ajaran Katolik, telah standar selama berabad-abad, bahkan sampai hari kita sendiri. St Thomas mencerminkan ideal Dominika. Dia adalah seorang kontemplatif sejati yang berbagi buah kontemplasi dengan orang lain.

Lahir dari keluarga bangsawan di Italia selatan, Thomas dididik oleh Benediktin. Dia adalah seorang mahasiswa unggul dan melampaui teman-teman sekelasnya dalam belajar serta praktek kebajikan.

Ketika ia menjadi cukup dewasa untuk memilih keadaan hidupnya, Thomas meninggalkan hal-hal dari dunia ini dan memilih untuk memasuki Ordo St Dominikus meskipun oposisi keluarganya, yang mengharapkan dia untuk menjadi seorang Benediktin. Pada usia tujuh belas, ia bergabung dengan Dominikan Napoli. Ibunya, bertekad untuk perubahan ini, bergegas ke Naples untuk berkonsultasi dengan anaknya, tetapi Dominikan mengirimnya ke Roma, dalam perjalanan ke Paris atau Cologne. Dia kemudian menyuruh saudara-saudaranya untuk menangkap Thomas dan membatasi dia di benteng San Giovanni di Rocca Secca. Dia tetap "dipenjarakan" oleh anggota keluarga untuk jangka waktu dua tahun dalam upaya untuk mencegah dia dari asumsi bahwa kebiasaan Dominika dan memaksa dia ke menyangkal keputusannya. Mereka bahkan pergi sejauh untuk menggoda dia dengan pelacur. Ketika wanita itu memasuki kamarnya, dikejar Thomas keluar dengan sepotong kayu terbakar dari api. Setelah acara ini, ia berdoa kepada Allah, meminta kemurnian pikiran dan tubuh. Dua malaikat menampakkan diri kepadanya dalam mimpi, untuk memastikan bahwa doa-doanya terkabul dan bahwa Allah memberinya karunia kesucian sempurna. Dengan demikian, ia menerima gelar 'Angelic Doctor. " Semua upaya keluarga terbukti sia-sia, seperti Thomas diberi anugerah untuk tetap murni dan bertekun dalam panggilannya.

Thomas belajar di Paris dan di Cologne bawah filsuf besar St Albertus Agung. Di sini ia dijuluki "sapi bodoh" karena cara diam dan ukuran besar, padahal ia seorang mahasiswa yang cemerlang. Pada usia 22, ia ditunjuk untuk mengajar di kota yang sama. Pada saat yang sama, ia juga mulai menerbitkan karya-karya pertamanya. Setelah empat tahun ia dikirim ke Paris. suci itu kemudian imam. Pada usia tiga puluh satu, ia menerima gelar doktornya.

Thomas menghabiskan sisa hidupnya belajar, berdoa, mengajar, menulis, menulis himne, dan bepergian. Selama hidupnya, ia menghasilkan 60 karya dalam waktu kurang dari 50 tahun.

Thomas membuat sintesis besar filsafat dan teologi. Ia menggabungkan wahyu dari tulisan suci dengan "kerangka" dari Aristoteles dan konsep partisipasi Plato. sintesis ini disebut filsafat Thomistik atau "SKOLASTIK" dan tetap menjadi teologi resmi Gereja sejak abad ke-13.

Ia meninggal pada 7 Maret 1274 dan dikanonisasi oleh Paus Yohanes XXII pada 18 Juli 1323 - kurang dari 50 tahun setelah kematiannya.
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          One sorcerer supreme pizza with a side of vengeance...   
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          Re: Durban, South Africa danger warning.   
O.M.G!!! Are you kidding me??? No wonder I fear Nigerians so much! I know i'm wrong by generalising, BUT! then again better to generalise THAN! Be sorry or even worse DEAD! You never hear ANY! Good things about them over hear in South Africa, other than "sex" of which is kind of played out if you ask me. I'm so glad you are alive and hopefully well, trust me when I say GOD was with you that dreadful night, you could've been MURDERED! Like my cousin, it pains me to share this but what the hell?
she was married to a nigerian who wore a mask of a "God Fearing Pastor" after a few years all hell broke loose, she was brainwashed into turning her back against us HER family, she ended up selling and using drugs, running the streets of HILLBROW! (infamous inner part of JHB) she would run away when she saw us with police and hopped from one building to the other. When she was about 3 months pregnant, she tried leaving her Nigerian husband (we were told by her drug using friends)
She was chopped and placed into a rubbish bag tucked in a sports bag!!! With a written NOTE! Written along these lines..."she had it coming, no Whore messes with me and my stuff and lives to tell the tale". To make matters worst the gruesome bag was delivered at my late Grandmother's door step!!! She suffered from a mild-stroke, that's what the doctors told us, and she never recovered since. To some this might sound fictional BUT! It's all TRUE it happened to my family and this is the exact reason I fear NOT! hate Nigerians. Sorry...
          Mental Health Specialists and Support Workers   
When someone suffers from a mental health problem whether it is depression or a more serious disorder such as schizophrenia, they are likely to come into contact with a number of professionals and support workers in the course of their treatment and recovery, so who are they?

For most people the first point of contact is usually their doctor who will be able to assess their symptoms, rule out anything else that may be causing them, and prescribe medication or refer you for some form of counselling or psychotherapy.

If the symptoms are severe or complex, or there are other problems, then your doctor may refer you to a psychiatrist for a more detailed assessment. A psychiatrist is a doctor who has undertaken further specialist study and therefore has in-depth knowledge of the brain and mental illness and will be in a better position to make an accurate diagnosis and to decide on the most appropriate treatment and medication.

However if your symptoms are more psychological or emotional in nature then you may be put in touch with a psychologist. Clinical Psychologists have studied the mind and how it can influence behaviour and are trained in various psychotherapy treatments. Psychologists will often specialise in a particular area of mental health and as such will be in the best position to advise you on what might be the most beneficial way forward for you. They cannot, however, prescribe drugs like a doctor or psychiatrist can.

People suffering with mental health problems will often come into contact with Community Psychiatric Nurses. CPNs work in the community and will therefore make home visits as well as see you in a clinic. They may specialise in a particular area of mental health and will play an important supportive role in helping people cope with their mental health problems by liaising with other specialists, by providing an understanding ear to talk to and by looking at ways of allaying any fears or worries you may have. They will also be able to offer advice on the side effects of any medication you are taking.

Occupational Therapists or OT's as they are often called, can help you find ways of overcoming practical problems and in doing so can help increase your confidence and your ability to cope on a day to day basis. Social workers on the other hand can help you with social issues. For example, they may assist you with your application for housing or state benefits, will help you sort out financial problems, childcare issues, or other challenges in your life that if are not dealt with may have a negative impact on your mental health.

Other professionals you may see include psychotherapists and counsellors. Psychotherapists specialise in the type of therapy they offer and counsellors listen and talk through problems with patients to help them find ways of overcoming them.

Although a visit to the doctor is the only action required for many people suffering with depression and anxiety or other mental health problems, being referred to someone else by your doctor doesn't necessarily mean you are more seriously ill. It's just that the most important thing for a speedy recovery is access to the right sort of treatment and help from the most appropriate person.

          The Benefits of Eating Nutritious Food   
One of the most important factors of being healthy is eating properly and making sure that your body gets all of the required nutrients. What does that exactly mean though? It means that people ought to fuel their body with wholesome, organic and nutritious foods that are packed with plenty of nutrients.

It also means that junk food such cookies, candy, cakes, chocolate, chips, french fries and soda pop should be avoided and perhaps eaten once per week at most because junk food can bring down our immune system. When our immune system becomes weak then we increase our chances of getting sick. Also, junk food eaten too often can make us gain weight which can bring on many other health problems.

However, when we eat nutritious food we feel better, look better and have a lot more energy to do the things that are required of us, but it also leaves us with more energy to do the fun things we want to do. Eating lots of organic vegetables especially green leafy vegetables and well-proportioned quantities of organic meat such as grass fed beef, or organic free-range chicken. Remember to consume the proper amount of good fats such as omega 3-6-9, or krill oil however, consult with a naturopathic doctor first.

Another benefit of eating nutritious food is that we can function better because without a nutritious and well-balanced meal people cannot focus and concentrate as well. It is a fact that the brain requires nutritious food especially fish so that we can think clearly and properly without any brain fog.

When we eat a lot of wholesome, organic foods our skin is also a lot clearer and it shines nicely. Junk food can produce a lot of acne which can be embarrassing. It is also important to note that it is a good idea to eat a variety of foods, especially vegetables because this will help with eating a nutritionally balanced diet that is full of vitamins. As well, it might help to avoid developing allergies to foods that we eat too often. Also, it decreases the risk of getting bored eating the same foods too often.

The last benefit I would like to mention is that it is very important to eat in moderation at each mealtime and to eat at least 3-5 times per day. This means eat 3 larger meals with smaller snacks throughout the day because this helps to keep your body fuelled properly all day long without having any sugar spikes.

Eating smaller meals throughout the day also helps to keep us feeling satisfied and it can improve our metabolism. When our metabolism is at its optimum performance then this can help us with both maintaining our weight and weight loss.

As you can see, there really are many benefits to eating nutritious food however, make sure to plan in advance because people can sometimes get very busy and then eat pre-packaged foods. Just make sure that you have plenty of tasty recipes that are fun and easy to prepare so that you can eat a nutritious meal as often as possible.

          Probiotics Are Great For A Healthy Body   
The food we consume everyday has to be digested and assimilated by the body for the production of energy and the functioning of the normal body. The process of digestion is helped by the presence of probiotics in the gut. When we fall sick, doctors prescribe antibiotics. Many of these medicines wipe out the good bacteria present in the body. To restore them, people consume probiotics. The good bacteria are available in its natural form in yogurt. However, enough numbers to restore the good bacteria may not be present in these natural supplements. So, manufactured products are suggested for maintaining a healthy environment in the body. These good bacteria are called the lactic acid bacteria. They are available in three forms that could benefit our body. The particular strain beneficial for your body can be found out from your physician.

These bacteria are prescribed for people with lactose intolerance. Such people lack an enzyme which converts the lactose into lactic acid. The good bacteria can do this conversion and can be used as a supplement to this enzyme. As they aid in the digestion process, they are known to be helpful in preventing colon cancer. They have anti-mutagenic properties and thus prevent the occurrence of cancer. Digestive system related problems can be alleviated by consuming a prescribed quantity of these supplements. In the long run, the immunity of the gut improves and many infections can be prevented. As the immunity increases, the body's resistance to pathogenic bacteria increases.

The dosage of these should be regulated. Consult a doctor for appropriate dosage and the frequency of intake. If high quantities are consumed they might cause bloating, gas and loose stools. Slight stomach discomfort may be experienced. As you take these for more number of times, you will understand the right dosage suitable for your body and the discomfort reduces. They are not medicines are artificially manufactured products. They are naturally occurring bacteria that have been accumulated in high dosages for helping the human body. They restore the natural balance in the gut and aid in the normal processes of the body. They are known to help our body create more antibodies which fight the disease causing pathogens. This will improve the overall immunity and prevent infections.

Other advantages of probiotics are being studied by experts. Some studies have shown the reduction of allergies in children with regular intake of these good bacteria. World Health Organization has recommended this for general health benefits to the human body. They are known to prevent infections in the urinary tract and vagina. They help in the overall increase of stamina and energy. Once the body is energetic and active, any infection can be prevented with ease. They are available easily from many online and local stores.

          Healthy Living: Nature's Natural Energy Booster   
I don't know about you but sometimes I feel like there just aren't enough hours in the day for me to get everything done. I get up early and then spend the rest of the day rushing to meet commitments and obligations. Awhile back there were days when I would feel utterly drained and it's all I could do to keep my weary head up and eyes open!

Being so busy, my diet consisted of little more than sugary snacks, processed foods and energy drinks.

Thankfully, I discovered a way to maximize my energy levels naturally and now I feel I can cope with just about anything. I'm happier, feel more confident and have so much energy my friends often ask me "just what are you on!?" as I storm through my day being more productive than ever before.

The answer to THAT particular question is quite surprising...

Need more energy? Caffeine is not the answer!

If stress is leaving you sleep-deprived and lacking energy, you probably kick start your day with a big jolt of coffee and keep on downing more caffeine throughout the day just so you can keep going.

The problem is, the more you rely on caffeine to prop up your dwindling energy levels, the more immune you become to its effect and the more you'll need. Before you know it, that one cup of coffee three times a day becomes six double espressos and you STILL feel tired.

Needless to say, so much caffeine can have an adverse affect on many aspects of your health including driving your blood pressure up to stratospheric levels.

It's not that I'm anti-caffeine by the way, simply that I have found that there is such a thing as too much of a good thing and an over reliance on caffeine means you are simply putting off an inevitable crash.

Thankfully for us health-conscious go-getters there is an alternative to coffee and caffeine for raising your energy levels - a super food called maca.

What is maca?

When I first came across maca, it was as an ingredient in a facial moisturizer. Needless to say I was more than a little surprised to later discover that maca is also a genuine superfood!

Maca, or maca root as it is sometimes known, is a Peruvian plant indigenous to the Andes which grows at heights of around 10,000 feet above sea level. It has been used for centuries in Peru as a herbal cure-all used to treat everything from colds to impotence!

Maca is very nutrient dense and contains large amounts of essential vitamins and minerals, amino acids and fiber and is especially rich in iron and calcium but it's greatest benefit is as an energizer.

Maca - the energizer

Where coffee boosts your energy by speeding up your metabolism and acting as a stimulant, maca works though an entirely different mechanism. Described as an adaptogen, maca is said to help balance your hormone levels so your body is better able to produce energy and deal with the daily stresses that life throws at you.

Hormones are chemical messengers that tell the organs of your body how to function. Some hormones are catabolic and are responsible for breaking your body down while others are anabolic which are responsible for building your body back up.

Too much stress, a poor diet and too much exposure to environmental pollutants can lead to a hormonal imbalance - normally in favor of the catabolic hormones. This means your body is constantly being broken down as opposed to being built back up. No wonder many of us feel tired and "beaten up" all the time!

Maca, because of its hormone balancing ability, puts the breaks on breakdown and tilts your hormonal balance back towards anabolism and recovery. This means your body is much more fatigue resistant and better able to cope with the stresses of modern daily life. In short, your energy levels increase because life is less likely to get you down.

Maca - an alternative to hormone replacement?

Unlike traditional medical hormone replacement therapies, maca does not work on individual organs but instead affects the whole organism - in other words, YOU! And because maca merely balances your natural hormone levels, there is little or no chance of any kind of unpleasant side affect which is not always the case with medical hormone replacement therapy.

In addition to balancing hormones and providing a healthy hit of vitamins and minerals, maca is also a powerful antioxidant which can literally help to reverse some of the signs of aging. It's no accident that Peruvian natives, who consume maca on a regular basis, live long and healthy lives and are active right up to the end.

Forms of Maca

Maca is available in a number of forms so you can choose how you want to take this miracle super food...

• Capsules are convenient but may prove expensive if you need to take a larger quantity of maca.

• Powder is another option as it can easily be mixed with water, a smoothie or juice but some people find the taste a little off-putting at first.

• Pressed maca tablets offer the convenience of capsules combined with the purity and concentration of loose powder.

• Maca liquid, extracted directly from the maca root, provides a very concentrated hit of maca goodness and is another option worth considering.

Whichever form of maca you decide on, it is important to buy organic maca preparations that originate from Peru.

Is Maca safe for everyone?

Peruvians have been using maca for over 3,000 years so it's safe to assume that in general, maca is suitable for most people. If you are using maca to treat a specific disease such as hypothyroidism or diabetes, I strongly suggest you discuss your intention with your doctor.

It's never a good idea to self-prescribe even the safest herb or superfood to treat medical conditions (it better to find the cause and not just treat the effect) so make sure you explain what you are taking and why with your doctor. This goes double if you are pregnant or breast feeding.

As maca is a 100% natural substance and is in fact a form of food rather than medication, there is no real reason why you shouldn't take maca but because it can have such a profound effect on hormone levels, it is always better to be safe than sorry.

Now that you understand how maca is a powerful energy booster. But what drains your energy in the first place? The answer is stress and poor sleep!


Franz Kafka
La Metamorfosis

Una mañana, tras un sueño intranquilo, Gregorio Samsa se despertó convertido en
un monstruoso insecto. Estaba echado de espaldas sobre un duro caparazón y, al alzar la
cabeza, vio su vientre convexo y oscuro, surcado por curvadas callosidades, sobre el que
casi no se aguantaba la colcha, que estaba a punto de escurrirse hasta el suelo. Numerosas
patas, penosamente delgadas en comparación con el grosor normal de sus piernas, se
agitaban sin concierto.
- ¿Qué me ha ocurrido?
No estaba soñando. Su habitación, una habitación normal, aunque muy pequeña,
tenía el aspecto habitual. Sobre la mesa había desparramado un muestrario de paños -
Samsa era viajante de comercio-, y de la pared colgaba una estampa recientemente
recortada de una revista ilustrada y puesta en un marco dorado. La estampa mostraba a
una mujer tocada con un gorro de pieles, envuelta en una estola también de pieles, y que,
muy erguida, esgrimía un amplio manguito, asimismo de piel, que ocultaba todo su
Gregorio miró hacia la ventana; estaba nublado, y sobre el cinc del alféizar
repiqueteaban las gotas de lluvia, lo que le hizo sentir una gran melancolía.
«Bueno –pensó–; ¿y si siguiese durmiendo un rato y me olvidase de todas estas
locuras?» Pero no era posible, pues Gregorio tenía la costumbre de dormir sobre el lado
derecho, y su actual estado no le permitía adoptar tal postura. Por más que se esforzara
volvía a quedar de espaldas. Intentó en vano esta operación numerosas veces; cerró los
ojos para no tener que ver aquella confusa agitación de patas, que no cesó hasta que notó
en el costado un dolor leve y punzante, un dolor jamás sentido hasta entonces.
- ¡Qué cansada es la profesión que he elegido! –se dijo–. Siempre de viaje. Las
preocupaciones son mucho mayores cuando se trabaja fuera, por no hablar de
las molestias propias de los viajes: estar pendiente de los enlaces de los trenes;
la comida mala, irregular; relaciones que cambian constantemente, que nunca
llegan a ser verdaderamente cordiales, y en las que no tienen cabida los
sentimientos. ¡Al diablo con todo!
Sintió en el vientre una ligera picazón. Lentamente, se estiró sobre la espalda en
dirección a la cabecera de la cama, para poder alzar mejor la cabeza. Vio que el sitio que
le picaba estaba cubierto de extraños puntitos blancos. Intentó rascarse con una pata; pero
tuvo que retirarla inmediatamente, pues el roce le producía escalofríos.
- Estoy atontado de tanto madrugar –se dijo–. No duermo lo suficiente. Hay
viajantes que viven mucho mejor. Cuando a media mañana regreso a la fonda
para anotar los pedidos, me los encuentro desayunando cómodamente
sentados. Si yo, con el jefe que tengo, hiciese lo mismo, me despedirían en el
acto. Lo cual, probablemente sería lo mejor que me podría pasar. Si no fuese
por mis padres, ya hace tiempo que me hubiese marchado. Hubiera ido a ver
el director y le habría dicho todo lo que pienso. Se caería de la mesa, ésa sobre
la que se sienta para, desde aquella altura, hablar a los empleados, que, como
es sordo, han de acercársele mucho. Pero todavía no he perdido la esperanza.
En cuanto haya reunido la cantidad necesaria para pagarle la deuda de mis
padres –unos cinco o seis años todavía–, me va a oír. Bueno; pero, por ahora,
lo que tengo que hacer es levantarme, que el tren sale a las cinco.
Volvió los ojos hacia el despertador, que tictaqueaba encima del baúl.
- ¡Dios mío! -exclamó para sí.
Eran más de las seis y media, y las manecillas seguían avanzando tranquilamente.
En realidad, ya eran casi las siete menos cuarto. ¿Es que no había sonado el despertador?
Desde la cama se veía que estaba puesto a las cuatro; por tanto, tenía que haber sonado.
Pero ¿era posible seguir durmiendo a pesar de aquel sonido que hacía estremecer hasta
los muebles? Su sueño no había sido tranquilo. Pero, por eso mismo, debía de haber
dormido al final más profundamente. ¿Qué podía hacer ahora? El tren siguiente salía a las
siete; para cogerlo tendría que darse muchísima prisa. El muestrario no estaba aún
empaquetado, y él mismo no se sentía nada dispuesto. Además, aunque alcanzase el tren,
no evitaría reprimenda del amo, pues el mozo del almacén, que había acudido al tren a las
cinco, debía de haber dado ya cuenta de su falta. El mozo era un esbirro del dueño, sin
dignidad ni consideración. Y si dijese que estaba enfermo, ¿qué pasaría? Pero esto,
además de ser muy penoso, despertaría sospechas, pues Gregorio, en los cinco años que
llevaba empleado, no había estado nunca enfermo. Vendría el gerente con el médico del
Montepío. Se desharía en reproches, delante de los padres, respecto a la holgazanería de
Gregorio, y refutaría cualquier objeción con el dictamen del doctor, para quien todos los
hombres están siempre sanos y sólo padecen de horror al trabajo. Y la verdad es que, en
este caso, su diagnóstico no habría sido del todo infundado. Salvo cierta somnolencia,
fuera de lugar después de tan prolongado sueño, Gregorio se sentía francamente bien,
además de muy hambriento.
Mientras pensaba atropelladamente, sin decidirse a levantarse, y justo en el
momento en que el despertador daba las siete menos cuarto, llamaron a la puerta que
estaba junto a la cabecera de la cama.
- Gregorio –dijo la voz de su madre–, son las siete menos cuarto. ¿No tenías
que ir de viaje?
¡Qué voz tan dulce! Gregorio se horrorizó al oír en cambio suya propia, que era la
de siempre, pero mezclada con un penoso y estridente silbido, en el cual las palabras, al
principio claras, se confundían luego y sonaban de forma tal que uno no estaba seguro de
haberlas oído. Gregorio hubiera querido dar una explicación detallada; pero, al oír su
propia voz, se limitó a decir:
- Sí, sí. Gracias, madre. Ya me levanto.
A través de la puerta de madera, la transformación de la voz de Gregorio no debió
notarse, pues la madre se tranquilizó con esta respuesta y se retiró. Pero este breve
diálogo reveló que Gregorio, contrariamente a lo que se creía, estaba todavía en casa.
Llegó el padre a su vez y, golpeando ligeramente la puerta, llamó:
- ¡Gregorio! ¡Gregorio! ¿Qué pasa?
Esperó un momento y volvió a insistir, alzando la voz:
- ¡Gregorio!
Mientras tanto, detrás de la otra puerta, la hermana le preguntaba suavemente:
- Gregorio, ¿no estás bien? ¿Necesitas algo?
- Ya estoy bien –respondió Gregorio a ambos a un tiempo, esforzándose por
pronunciar con claridad, y hablando con gran lentitud, para disimular el
insólito sonido de su voz. El padre reanudó su desayuno, pero la hermana
siguió susurrando:
- Abre, Gregorio, por favor.
Gregorio no tenía la menor intención de abrir, felicitándose, por el contrario, de la
precaución –contraída en los viajes– de encerrarse en su cuarto por la noche, aun en su
propia casa.
Lo primero que tenía que hacer era levantarse tranquilamente, arreglarse sin que
le molestaran y, sobre todo, desayunar. Sólo después de hecho todo esto pensaría en lo
demás, pues se daba cuenta de que en la cama no podía pensar con claridad. Recordaba
haber sentido en más de una ocasión un vago malestar en la cama, producido, sin duda,
por alguna postura incómoda, la cual, una vez levantado, se disipaba rápidamente; y tenía
curiosidad por ver desvanecerse paulatinamente sus imaginaciones de hoy. En cuanto al
cambio de su voz era simplemente el preludio de un resfriado, enfermedad profesional
del viajante de comercio.
Apartar la colcha era cosa fácil. Le bastaría con arquearse un poco y la colcha
caería por sí sola. Pero la dificultad estaba en la extraordinaria anchura de Gregorio. Para
incorporarse, podía haberse apoyado en brazos y manos; pero, en su lugar, tenía ahora
innumerables patas en constante agitación y le era imposible controlarlas. Y el caso es
que quería incorporarse. Se estiraba; lograba por fin dominar una de sus patas; pero,
mientras tanto, las demás proseguían su anárquica y penosa agitación.
«No es bueno haraganear en la cama», pensó Gregorio.
Primero intentó sacar la parte inferior del cuerpo. Pero dicha parte inferior –que
no había visto todavía y que, por tanto, no podía imaginar con exactitud– resultó
sumamente difícil de mover. Inició la operación muy lentamente. Hizo acopio de energías
y se arrastró hacia delante. Pero calculó mal la dirección, se dio un fuerte golpe contra los
pies de la cama, y el dolor subsiguiente le reveló que la parte inferior de su cuerpo era
quizá, en su nuevo estado, la más sensible. Intentó, pues, sacar la parte superior, y volvió
cuidadosamente la cabeza hacia el borde del lecho. Hizo esto sin problemas y, a pesar de
su anchura y su peso, el cuerpo siguió por fin, lentamente, el movimiento iniciado por la
cabeza. Pero entonces tuvo miedo de continuar avanzando de aquella forma, porque, si se
dejaba caer así, sin duda se haría daño en la cabeza; y ahora menos que nunca quería
Gregorio perder el sentido. Prefería quedarse en la cama.
Pero cuando, después de realizar a la inversa los mismos movimientos, en medio
de grandes esfuerzos y jadeos, se halló de nuevo en la misma posición y volvió a ver sus
patas moviéndose frenéticamente, comprendió que no podía hacer otra cosa, y volvió a
pensar que no debía seguir en la cama y que lo más sensato era arriesgarlo todo, aunque
sólo tuviera una mínima posibilidad. Pero en seguida recordó que meditar serenamente
era mejor que tomar decisiones drásticas. Sus ojos se clavaron en la ventana; pero, por
desgracia, la niebla que aquella mañana ocultaba por completo el lado opuesto de la calle,
pocos ánimos le infundió.
«Las siete ya –pensó al oír el despertador–. ¡Las siete ya, y todavía sigue la
Durante unos momentos permaneció echado, inmóvil y respirando lentamente,
como si esperase que el silencio le devolviera a su estado normal.
Pero, al poco rato, pensó: «Antes de que den las siete y cuarto es indispensable
que me haya levantado. Además, seguramente vendrá alguien del almacén a preguntar
por mí, pues abren antes de las siete.» Se dispuso a salir de la cama, balanceándose sobre
su borde. Dejándose caer de esta forma, la cabeza, que pensaba mantener firmemente
erguida, probablemente no sufriría daño ninguno. La espalda parecía resistente, y no le
pasaría nada al dar con ella en la alfombra. Únicamente le hacía vacilar el temor al
estrépito que esto habría de producir, y que sin duda asustaría a su familia. Pero no
quedaba más remedio que correr el riesgo.
Ya estaba Gregorio con casi medio cuerpo fuera de la cama (el nuevo método era
como un juego, pues consistía simplemente en balancearse hacia atrás), cuando cayó en
cuenta de que todo sería muy sencillo si alguien viniese en su ayuda. Con dos personas
robustas (y pensaba en su padre y en la criada) bastaría. Sólo tendrían que pasar los
brazos por debajo de su abombada espalda, sacarle de la cama y, agachándose luego con
la carga, dejar que se estirara en el suelo, en donde era de suponer que las patas se
mostrarían útiles. Ahora bien, y prescindiendo del hecho de que las puertas estaban
cerradas con llave, ¿convenía realmente pedir ayuda? Pese a lo apurado de su situación,
no pudo por menos de sonreír.
Había adelantado ya tanto, que un solo balanceo, algo más enérgico que los
anteriores, bastaría para hacerle bascular sobre el borde de la cama. Además pronto no le
quedaría más remedio que decidirse, pues sólo faltaban cinco minutos para las siete y
cuarto. En ese momento, llamaron a la puerta del piso.
«Debe ser alguien del almacén», pensó Gregorio, mientras sus patas se agitaban
cada vez más rápidamente. Por un momento permaneció todo en silencio. «No abren»,
pensó entonces, aferrándose a tan descabellada esperanza. Pero, como no podía por
menos de suceder, oyó aproximarse a la puerta las fuertes pisadas de la criada. Y la
puerta se abrió. A Gregorio le bastó oír la primera palabra del visitante para percatarse de
quién era. Era el gerente en persona. ¿Por qué estaría Gregorio condenado a trabajar en la
cual la más mínima ausencia despertaba inmediatamente las más terribles sospechas? ¿Es
que los empleados eran todos unos sinvergüenzas? ¿Es que no podía haber entre ellos
algún hombre de bien que, después de perder un par de horas en la mañana, se volviese
loco de remordimiento y no estuviera en condiciones de abandonar la cama? ¿Es que no
bastaba con mandar a un chico a preguntar (suponiendo que tuviese fundamento esa
manía de averiguar), sino que tenía que venir el mismísimo gerente a enterar a una
inocente familia de que sólo él tenía autoridad para intervenir en la investigación de tan
grave asunto? Y Gregorio, excitado por estos pensamientos más que decidido a ello, se
tiró violentamente de la cama. Se oyó un golpe sordo, pero no demasiado. La alfombra
amortiguó la caída; la espalda tenía mayor elasticidad de lo que Gregorio había supuesto,
y esto evitó que el ruido fuese tan estrepitoso como había temido. Pero no tuvo cuidado
de mantener la cabeza suficientemente erguida; se lastimó y el dolor le hizo frotarla
furiosamente contra la alfombra.
- Algo ha ocurrido ahí dentro –dijo el gerente en la habitación de la izquierda.
Gregorio intentó imaginar que al gerente pudiera sucederle algún día lo
mismo que hoy a él, cosa ciertamente posible. Pero el gerente, como
replicando con energía a esta suposición, dio unos cuantos pasos por el cuarto
vecino, haciendo crujir sus zapatos de charol. Desde la habitación contigua de
la derecha, la hermana susurró:
- Gregorio, está aquí el gerente del almacén.
- Ya lo sé –contestó Gregorio débilmente, sin atreverse a levantar la voz hasta
el punto de hacerse oír por su hermana.
- Gregorio –dijo por fin el padre desde la habitación contigua de la izquierda–,
ha venido el señor gerente y pregunta por qué no tomaste el primer tren. No
sabemos que contestar. Además, desea hablar personalmente contigo. Con que
haz el favor de abrir la puerta. El señor tendrá la bondad de disculpar el
desorden del cuarto.
- ¡Buenos días, señor Samsa! –terció entonces amablemente el gerente.
- No se encuentra bien –dijo la madre a este último mientras el padre
continuaba hablando junto a la puerta–. Está enfermo, créame. ¿Cómo si no,
iba a perder el tren? Gregorio no piensa más que en el almacén. ¡Si casi me
molesta que no salga ninguna noche! Ahora, por ejemplo, ha estado aquí ocho
días; pues bien, ¡ni una sola noche ha salido de casa! Se sienta con nosotros
alrededor de la mesa lee el periódico en silencio o estudia itinerarios. Su única
distracción es la carpintería. En dos o tres tardes ha tallado un marquito.
Cuando lo vea, se va a asombrar; es precioso. Está colocado en su cuarto;
ahora lo verá en cuanto abra Gregorio. Por otra parte, me alegro de que haya
venido usted, pues nosotros no hubiéramos podido convencer a Gregorio de
que abra la puerta. ¡Es tan testarudo! Seguramente no se encuentra bien,
aunque antes dijo lo contrario.
- Voy en seguida –dijo débilmente Gregorio, sin moverse para no perder
palabra de la conversación.
- Seguro que es como dice usted señora. –repuso el jefe–. Espero que no sea
nada serio. Aunque, por otra parte, he de decir que nosotros, los comerciantes,
tenemos que saber afrontar a menudo ligeras indisposiciones, anteponiendo a
todo los negocios.
- Bueno –preguntó el padre, impacientándose y volviendo a llamar a la puerta–;
¿puede entrar ya el señor?
- No –respondió Gregorio.
En la habitación de la izquierda se hizo un apenado silencio, y en la de la derecha
comenzó a sollozar la hermana.
¿Por qué no iba a reunirse con los demás? Claro, acababa de levantarse y ni
siquiera habría empezado a vestirse. Pero ¿por qué lloraba? Acaso porque el hermano no
se levantaba, porque no abría la puerta, porque corría riesgo de perder su empleo, con lo
cual el dueño volvería a atormentar a los padres con las viejas deudas. Pero, por el
momento, estas preocupaciones no venían a cuento. Gregorio estaba allí, y no pensaba ni
remotamente en abandonar a los suyos. Yacía sobre la alfombra, y nadie que supiera en
qué estado se encontraba hubiera pensado que podía hacer pasar a su jefe. Pero esta leve
descortesía, que más adelante explicaría satisfactoriamente, no era motivo suficiente para
despedirle. Y Gregorio pensó que, de momento, en vez de molestarle con quejas y
sermones era mejor dejarle en paz. Pero la incertidumbre en que se hallaban con respecto
a él era precisamente lo que inquietaba a los otros, disculpando su actitud.
- Señor Samsa –dijo por fin, el gerente con voz engolada–, ¿qué significa esto?
Se ha atrincherado usted en su cuarto y no contesta más que con monosílabos.
In quieta usted inútilmente a sus padres y, dicho sea de paso, falta a su
obligación con el almacén de una manera inconcebible. Le hablo en nombre
de sus padres y de la empresa, y le ruego encarecidamente que se explique en
seguida y con claridad. Estoy asombrado; yo le tenía a usted por un hombre
formal y juicioso, y no entiendo estas extravagancias. La verdad es que el
señor director me insinuó esta mañana una posible explicación de su ausencia:
el cobro que se le encomendó que hiciese efectivo anoche. Yo dije que
respondía personalmente que no había ni que pensar en tal posibilidad; pero
por ahora, ante esta incompresible actitud, no siento ya deseos de seguir
intercediendo por usted. Su posición no es, desde luego, muy sólida. Mi
intención era decirle todo esto a solas; pero como a usted al parecer no le
importa hacerme perder el tiempo, no veo por qué no habrían de oírlo sus
señores padres. Últimamente su trabajo ha dejado bastante que desear. Es
verdad que no está en la época más propicia para los negocios; nosotros
mismos lo reconocemos. Pero, señor Samsa, no hay época, no puede haberla,
en que los negocios se paralicen.
- Ya voy –gritó Gregorio fuera de sí, olvidándose en su excitación de todo lo
demás–. Voy inmediatamente. Una ligera indisposición me retenía en la cama.
Estoy todavía acostado. Pero ya me siento bien. Ahora mismo me levanto.
¡Un momento! Aún no me encuentro tan bien como creía. Pero ya estoy
mejor. ¡No entiendo cómo me ha podido ocurrir! Ayer me encontraba
perfectamente. Sí, mis padres lo saben. Mejor dicho, ya ayer percibí los
primeros síntomas. ¿Cómo no me lo habrán notado? ¿Por qué no lo diría yo en
el almacén? Pero siempre se cree uno que pondrá bien sin necesidad de
quedarse en casa. ¡Por favor, tenga consideración de mis padres! No hay
motivo para los reproches que me acaba de hacer; nunca me han dicho nada
parecido. Sin duda, no ha visto usted los últimos pedidos que he transmitido.
Además, saldré en el tren de las ocho. Con estas dos horas de descanso he
recuperado las fuerzas. No se entretenga usted más. En seguida voy al
almacén. Explique allí esto, se lo suplico, y presente mis respetos al director.
Mientras decía atropelladamente todo esto, Gregorio, gracias a la habilidad
adquirida en la cama, se acercó sin dificultad al baúl e intentó enderezarse apoyándose en
él. Quería abrir la puerta, presentarse ante el gerente, hablar con él. Sentía curiosidad por
saber lo que dirían cuando le viesen los que tan insistentemente le llamaban. Si se
asustaban, no era culpa de él y no tenía nada que temer. Si, por el contrario, se quedaban
tranquilos, tampoco él tenía por que excitarse, y podía, si se daba prisa, estar a las ocho
en la estación. Varias veces resbaló contra las lisas paredes del baúl; pero, al fin logró
incorporarse. El dolor en el abdomen, aunque muy intenso, no le preocupaba. Se dejó
caer contra el respaldo de una silla cercana, a cuyos bordes se agarró fuertemente con sus
patas. Logró tranquilizarse, y calló para escuchar lo que decía el gerente.
- ¿Han entendido una sola palabra? –preguntó éste a los padres–. ¿No será que
se hace el loco?
- ¡Por el amor de Dios! –exclamó la madre llorando–. Tal vez se encuentre muy
mal y nosotros le estamos mortificando. –Y seguidamente llamó–: ¡Grete!
- ¿Qué quieres madre? –contestó la hermana desde el otro lado de la habitación
de Gregorio, a través de la cual hablaban.
- Tienes que ir en seguida a buscar al médico Gregorio está enfermo. Ve
corriendo. ¿Has oído cómo hablaba?
- Es una voz de animal –dijo el gerente, que hablaba en voz muy baja, en
comparación con los gritos de la madre.
- ¡Ana! ¡Ana! –llamó el padre, volviéndose hacia la cocina a través del
recibidor y dando palmadas–. Vaya inmediatamente a buscar un cerrajero.
Se oyó por el recibidor el rumor de las faldas de dos jóvenes que salían corriendo
(¿cómo se habría vestido la hermana?), y el ruido brusco de la puerta del piso abrirse.
Pero no se escuchó ningún portazo. Debían de haber dejado la puerta abierta, como suele
suceder en las casas en donde ha ocurrido una desgracia.
Gregorio, sin embargo, estaba mucho más tranquilo. Sus palabras resultaban
ininteligibles, aunque a él le parecían muy claras, más claras que antes, sin duda porque
ya se le iba acostumbrando el oído; pero lo importante era que ya se habían percatado los
demás de que algo anormal le sucedía y se disponían a acudir en su ayuda. Se sintió
aliviado por la prontitud y energía con que habían tomado las primeras medidas. Se sintió
nuevamente incluido entre los seres humanos, y esperaba tanto del médico como del
cerrajero acciones insólitas y maravillosas.
A fin de poder intervenir lo más claramente posible en las conversaciones
decisivas que se avecinaban, carraspeó ligeramente; lo hizo muy levemente, por temor a
que también este ruido sonase a algo que no fuese una tos humana, pues ya no tenía
seguridad de poder apreciarlo. Mientras tanto, en la habitación contigua reinaba un
profundo silencio. Tal vez los padres, sentados a la mesa con el gerente, estuvieran
hablando en voz baja. Tal vez permanecieran pegados a la puerta, escuchando.
Gregorio se deslizó lentamente con la silla hacia la puerta; al llegar allí, soltó la
silla se dejó caer contra la puerta y se sostuvo en pie, pegado a ella por la viscosidad de
sus patas. Descansó así un momento del esfuerzo realizado. Luego intentó hacer girar la
llave con la boca. Por desgracia, no parecía tener dientes propiamente dichos. ¿Con qué
iba entonces a coger la llave? Pero, en cambio, sus mandíbulas eran muy fuerte y, gracias
a ellas, pudo poner la llave en movimiento, sin reparar en el daño que seguramente se
hacía, pues un líquido oscuro le salió por la boca, resbalando por la llave y goteando
hasta el suelo.
- Escuchen –dijo el gerente–; está girando la llave.
Estas palabras alentaron mucho a Gregorio. Pero todos, el padre, la madre,
deberían haber gritado: «¡Adelante, Gregorio!» Sí, deberían haber gritado: «¡Adelante!
¡Duro con la cerradura!» Imaginando la ansiedad con que todos seguirían sus esfuerzos,
mordió con desesperación la llave, desfallecido. A medida que la llave giraba en la
cerradura, Gregorio se bamboleaba en el aire, colgando por la boca, forcejeando,
empujando la llave hacia abajo con todo el peso de su cuerpo. El sonido metálico de la
cerradura al abrirse le volvió completamente en sí.
«Bueno –se dijo con un suspiro de alivio–; no ha sido necesario que viniera el
cerrajero», y dio con la cabeza en el pestillo para acabar de abrir.
Este modo de abrir la puerta fue la causa de que no le viesen inmediatamente.
Gregorio tuvo que girar lentamente contra una de las hojas de la puerta, con gran cuidado
para no caer de espaldas. Y aún estaba ocupado en llevar a cabo tan difícil operación, sin
tiempo para pensar otra cosa, cuando oyó una exclamación del gerente que sonó como el
aullido del viento, y le vio, junto a la puerta, taparse la boca con la mano y retroceder
lentamente, como empujado por una fuerza invisible.
La madre –que, a pesar de la presencia del gerente, estaba allí sin arreglar, con el
pelo revuelto– miró a Gregorio, juntando las manos, avanzó liego dos pasos hacia él, y se
desplomó por fin, en medio de sus faldas desplegadas a su alrededor, con la cabeza caída
sobre su pecho. El padre amenazó con el puño, con expresión hostil, como si quisiera
empujar a Gregorio hacia el interior de la habitación; se volvió luego, saliendo con paso
inseguro al recibidor y, cubriéndose los ojos con las manos, manos rompió a llorar de tal
modo, que el llanto sacudía su robusto pecho.
Gregorio no llegó, pues, a salir de su habitación; permaneció apoyado en la hoja
de la puerta, mostrando sólo la mitad de su cuerpo, con la cabeza ladeada, contemplando
a los presentes. La lluvia había amainado, y al otro lado de la calle se recortaba nítido un
trozo de edificio negruzco de enfrente. Era un hospital, cuya monótona fachada jalonaban
numerosas ventanas idénticas. La lluvia caía ahora en goterones aislados, que se veían
llegar claramente al suelo. Sobre la mesa estaban los utensilios del desayuno; para el
padre, era la comida principal del día, que prolongaba con la lectura de varios periódicos.
En la pared que Gregorio tenía enfrente, colgaba un retrato de éste durante su servicio
militar, con uniforme de teniente, la mano en el puño de la espada, sonriendo
despreocupadamente, con un aire que parecía exigir respeto para su uniforme y su
actitud. Esa habitación daba al recibidor; por la puerta abierta se veía la del piso, también
abierta, el rellano de la escalera y el primer tramo de ésta que conducía a los pisos
- Bueno –dijo Gregorio, convencido de ser el único que había conservado la
calma–. Enseguida me visto, recojo el muestrario y me voy. Me dejaréis que
salga de viaje, ¿verdad? Ya ve usted, señor gerente, que no soy testarudo y
que trabajo con gusto. Viajar es cansado; pero yo no sabría vivir sin viajar.
¿Adónde va usted? ¿Al almacén? ¿Sí? ¿Lo contará todo tal como ha sucedido?
Uno puede tener un bajón momentáneo; pero es precisamente entonces
cuando deben acordarse los jefes de lo útil que uno ha sido y pensar que, una
vez superado el contratiempo, trabajará con redobladas energías. Yo, como
usted bien sabe, le estoy muy agradecido al señor director. Por otra parte,
tengo que atender a mis padres y a mi hermana. Es verdad que hoy me
encuentro en un apuro. Pero trabajando saldré bien de él. No me ponga las
cosas más difíciles de lo que están. Póngase de mi parte. Ya sé que al viajante
no se le quiere. Todos creen que gana el dinero a espuertas, sin trabajar
apenas. No hay ninguna razón para que este prejuicio desaparezca; pero usted
está más enterado de l que son las cosas que el resto del personal, incluso que
el propio director, que, en su calidad de propietario, se equivoca con
frecuencia respecto a un empleado. Usted sabe muy bien que el viajante, como
está fuera del almacén la mayor parte del año, es fácil blanco de habladurías,
equívocos y quejas infundadas, contra las cuales no le es fácil defenderse, ya
que la mayoría de las veces no llegan a sus oídos, y sólo al regresar reventado
de un viaje empieza a notar directamente las consecuencias negativas de una
acusación desconocida. No se vaya sin decirme algo que me pruebe que me da
usted la razón, por lo menos en parte.
Pero, desde las primeras palabras de Gregorio, el gerente había dado media vuelta
y le contemplaba por encima del hombro, con una mueca de repugnancia en el rostro.
Mientras Gregorio hablaba, no permaneció un momento quieto. Se retiró hacia la puerta
sin quitarle la vista de encima, muy lentamente, como si una fuerza misteriosa le
retuviese allí. Llegó, por fin, al recibidor y dio los últimos pasos con tal rapidez que
parecía que estuviera pisando brasas ardientes. Alargó el brazo derecho en dirección a la
escalera, como si esperase encontrar allí milagrosamente la libertad.
Gregorio comprendió que no debía permitir que el gerente se marchará de aquel
modo, pues si no su puesto en el almacén estaba seriamente amenazado. No lo veían los
padres tan claro como él, porque, con el transcurso de los años, habían llegado a pensar
que la posición de Gregorio en aquella empresa era inamovible; además, con la inquietud
del momento se habían olvidado de toda prudencia. Pero no así Gregorio, que se daba
cuenta de que era indispensable retener al gerente y tranquilizarle. De ello dependía el
porvenir de Gregorio y de los suyos. ¡Si al menos estuviera allí su hermana! Era muy
lista; había llorado cuando Gregorio yacía aún tranquilamente sobre su espalda. Seguro
que el gerente, hombre galante, se hubiera dejado convencer por la joven. Ella habría
cerrado la puerta del piso y le habría tranquilizado en el recibidor. Pero no estaba su
hermana, y Gregorio tenía que arreglárselas solo. Sin reparar en que todavía no conocía
sus nuevas facultades de movimiento, y que lo más probable era que no lograse entender,
abandonó la hoja de la puerta en que se apoyaba y se deslizó por el hueco formado al
abrirse la otra con intención de avanzar hacia el gerente, que seguía cómicamente
agarrado a la barandilla del rellano. Pero inmediatamente cayó al suelo, intentando con
grandes esfuerzos, sostenerse sobre sus innumerables y diminutas patas, profiriendo un
leve quejido. Entonces se sintió, por primera vez en el día, invadido por un verdadero
bienestar: las patitas, apoyadas en el suelo, le obedecían perfectamente. Con alegría, vio
que empezaban a llevarle adonde deseaba ir, dándole la sensación de que sus sufrimientos
habían concluido. Pero en el momento en que Gregorio empezaba a avanzar lentamente,
balanceándose a ras de tierra, no lejos y enfrente de su madre, ésta, pese a su
desvanecimiento previo, dio de pronto un brinco y se puso a gritar, extendiendo los
brazos con las manos abiertas: «¡Socorro! ¡Por el amor de Dios! ¡Socorro!» Inclinaba la
cabeza como para ver mejor a Gregorio, pero de pronto, como para desmentir esta
impresión, se desplomó hacia atrás cayendo sobre la mesa, y, ajena al hecho de que
estaba aún puesta, quedó sentado en ella, sin darse cuenta de que a su lado el café salía de
la cafetera volcada, derramándose sobre la alfombra.
- ¡Madre! ¡Madre! –gimió Gregorio, mirándola desde abajo. Por un momento se
olvidó del gerente; y no pudo evita, ante el café vertido, abrir y cerrar
repetidas veces las mandíbulas en el vacío. Su madre, gritando de nuevo y
huyendo de la mesa, se lanzó en brazos del padre, que corrió a su encuentro.
Pero Gregorio no podía dedicar ya su atención a sus padres; el gerente estaba
en la escalera y, con la barbilla apoyada sobre la baranda, dirigía una última
mirada a aquella escena. Gregorio tomó impulso para darle alcance, pero él
debió de comprender su intención, pues, de un salto, bajó varios escalones y
desapareció, profiriendo unos alaridos que resonaron por toda la escalera. Para
colmo de males, la huida del jefe pareció trastornar por completo al padre, que
hasta entonces se había mantenido relativamente sereno; pues, en lugar de
correr tras el fugitivo, o por lo menos permitir que así lo hiciese Gregorio,
empuño con la diestra el bastón del gerente –que éste no había recogido, como
tampoco su sombrero y su gabán, olvidados en una silla– y, armándose con la
otra mano de un gran periódico que había sobre la mesa, se dispuso, dando
fuertes patadas en el suelo, esgrimiendo papel y bastón, a hacer retroceder a
Gregorio hasta el interior de su cuarto. De nada le sirvieron a éste sus súplicas,
que no fueron entendidas; y aunque inclinó sumiso la cabeza, sólo consiguió
excitar aún más a su padre. La madre, a pesar del mal tiempo, había abierto
una ventana y, violentamente inclinada hacia fuera, se cubría el rostro con las
manos. Entre el aire de la calle y el de la escalera se estableció una fuerte
corriente; las cortinas de la ventana se ahuecaron; sobre la mesa se agitaron
los periódicos, y algunas hojas sueltas se agitaron por el suelo. El padre,
inflexible, resoplaba violentamente, intentando hacer retroceder a Gregorio.
Pero éste carecía aún de práctica en la marcha hacia atrás, y la cosa iba muy
despacio. ¡Si al menos hubiera podido moverse! En un santiamén se hubiese
encontrado en su cuarto. Pero temía, con su lentitud en girar, impacientar a su
padre, cuyo bastón podía deslomarle o abrirle la cabeza. Finalmente, sin
embargo, no tuvo más remedio que volverse, pues advirtió contrariado que,
caminado hacia atrás, no podía controlar la dirección. Así que, sin dejar de
mirar angustiosamente a su padre, empezó a girar lo más rápidamente que
pudo, es decir, con extraordinaria lentitud. El padre debió percatarse de su
buena voluntad, pues dejó de hostigarle, dirigiendo incluso de lejos, con la
punta del bastón, el movimiento giratorio. ¡Si al menos hubiese dejado de
resopla! Esto era lo que más alteraba a Gregorio. Cuando ya iba a terminar el
giro, aquel resoplido le hizo equivocarse, obligándole a retroceder poco a
poco. Por fin logró quedarse frente a la puerta. Pero entonces recordó que su
cuerpo era demasiado ancho para poder pasar sin más. Al padre, en medio de
su excitación, no se le ocurrió abrir la otra hoja para dejar espacio suficiente.
Estaba obsesionado con la idea de que Gregorio había de meterse cuanto antes
en su habitación. Tampoco hubiera permitido los lentos preparativos que
Gregorio necesitaba para incorporarse y, de este modo, pasar por la puerta.
Como si no hubiese problema alguno azuzaba a Gregorio con furia creciente.
Gregorio oía tras de sí una voz que parecía imposible que fuese la de un padre.
Se incrustó en el marco de la puerta. Se irguió de medio lado y quedó
atravesado en el umbral, lacerándose el costado. En la puerta aparecieron unas
manchas repulsivas. Gregorio quedó allí atascado, sin posibilidad de hacer el
menor movimiento.
Las patitas de uno de los lados colgaban en el aire, mientras que las del otro
quedaban dolorosamente oprimidas contra el suelo... En esto, el padre le dio por detrás un
empujón enérgico y salvador, que lo lanzó dentro del cuarto, sangrando copiosamente.
Luego, cerró la puerta con el bastón, y por fin volvió a la calma.
Hasta la noche no despertó Gregorio de un pesado sueño, semejante a un
desmayo. No habría tardado mucho en despabilarse por sí solo, pues ya había descansado
bastante, pero le pareció que le despertaban unos pasos furtivos y el ruido de la puerta del
recibidor, que alguien cerraba suavemente. El reflejo del tranvía proyectaba franjas de luz
en el techo de la habitación y la parte superior de los muebles; pero de abajo, donde
estaba Gregorio, reinaba la oscuridad. Lenta y todavía torpemente, tanteando con sus
antenas, que en ese momento le mostraron su utilidad, se deslizó hacia la puerta para ver
lo que había ocurrido. En su costado izquierdo había una larga y repugnante llaga.
Renqueaba alternativamente sobre cada una de sus dos hileras de patas, una de las cuales
herida en el accidente de la mañana –sorprendentemente, las demás habían quedado
ilesas–, se arrastraba sin vida.
Al llegar a la puerta, comprendió que lo que le había atraído era el olor de algo
comestible. Encontró una cazoleta llena de leche con azúcar, en la que flotaban trocitos
de pan. Estuvo a punto de reír de gozo, pues tenía aún más hambre que por la mañana.
Hundió la cabeza en la leche casi hasta los ojos; pero enseguida la retiró contrariado, pues
no sólo la herida de su costado izquierdo le hacía dificultosa la operación (para comer
tenía que mover todo el cuerpo), sino que, además, la leche, que hasta entonces había
sido su bebida predilecta –por eso, sin duda, la había puesto allí su hermana–, no le gustó
nada. Se apartó casi con repugnancia de la cazoleta y se arrastró de nuevo hacia el centro
de la habitación. Por la rendija de la puerta vio que la luz estaba encendida en el
comedor. Pero, en contra de lo habitual, no se oía al padre leer en voz alta a la madre y la
hermana el diario de la tarde. No se oía el menor ruido. Quizá esta costumbre, de la que
siempre le hablaba la hermana en sus cartas, hubiese desaparecido. Todo estaba
silencioso, pese a que, con toda seguridad, la casa no estaba vacía. «¡Qué vida tan
tranquila lleva mi familia!», pensó Gregorio. Mientras su mirada se perdía en las
sombras, se sintió orgulloso de haber podido proporcionar a sus padres y a su hermana
tan sosegada existencia, en un hogar tan acogedor. De pronto pensó con terror que
aquella tranquilidad, aquel bienestar y aquella alegría iban a terminar... Para no
abandonarse en estos pensamientos, prefirió ponerse en movimiento y comenzó a
arrastrarse por la habitación.
Durante la noche se entreabrió una vez una de las hojas de la puerta, y otra vez la
otra: alguien quería entrar. Gregorio, en vista de ello, se colocó contra la puerta que daba
al comedor, dispuesto a atraer hacia el interior al indeciso visitante, o por lo menos a
averiguar quién era. Pero la puerta no volvió a abrirse, y esperó en vano. Esa mañana,
cuando la puerta estaba cerrada, todos habían intentado entrar, y ahora que él había
abierto una puerta y que la otra había sido también abierta, sin duda, durante el día, ya no
venía nadie, y las llaves habían sido puestas en la parte exterior de las cerraduras.
Estaba muy avanzada la noche cuando se apagó la luz del comedor. Gregorio
comprendió que sus padres habían permanecido en vela hasta entonces. Oyó como se
alejaban de puntillas. Hasta la mañana no entraría seguramente nadie a ver a Gregorio:
tenía tiempo de sobra para pensar, sin temor a ser importunado, en su futuro. Pero aquella
habitación fría y de techo alto, en donde había de permanecer echado de bruces. Le dio
miedo; no entendía por qué, pues era la suya, la habitación en que vivía desde hacía cinco
años... Bruscamente, y no sin algo de vergüenza, se metió debajo del sofá, en donde, a
pesar de sentirse algo estrujado, por no poder levantar la cabeza, se encontró en seguida
muy bien, lamentando únicamente no poder introducirse allí por completo a causa de su
excesiva corpulencia.
Así permaneció toda la noche, sumido en un duermevela del que le despertaba
con sobresalto el hambre, y sacudido por preocupaciones y esperanzas no muy concretas,
pero cuya conclusión era siempre la necesidad de tener calma y paciencia y de hacer lo
posible para que su familia se hiciese cargo de la situación y no sufriera más de lo
Muy temprano, cuando apenas empezaba a clarear, Gregorio tuvo ocasión de
poner en práctica sus resoluciones. Su hermana, ya casi arreglada, abrió la puerta que
daba al recibidor y le buscó ansiosamente con la mirada. Al principio no le vio; pero al
descubrirle debajo del sofá –¡en algún sitio había de estar! ¡No iba a haber volado!– se
asustó tanto que, compulsivamente, volvió a cerrar la puerta. Pero inmediatamente se
arrepintió de su reacción, pues volvió abrir y entró de puntillas, como si fuese la
habitación de un enfermo grave o un extraño. Gregorio, asomando apenas la cabeza fuera
del sofá, la observaba. ¿Se daría cuenta de que no había probado la leche y,
comprendiendo que no había sido por falta de hambre, le traería alimentos más
adecuados? Pero si no lo hacía, él preferiría morirse de hambre antes que pedírselo, pese
a que sentía enormes deseos de salir de debajo del sofá y suplicarle que le trajese algo
bueno de comer. Pero su hermana, asombrada, advirtió inmediatamente que la cazoleta
estaba intacta; únicamente se había vertido un poco de leche. La recogió, y se la llevó.
Gregorio sentía una gran curiosidad por ver lo que la bondad de su hermana le reservaba.
A fin de ver cuál era su gusto, le trajo un surtido completo de alimentos y los extendió
sobre un periódico viejo: legumbres de días atrás, medio podridas ya; huesos de la cena
de la víspera, rodeados de blanca salsa cuajada; pasas y almendras; un trozo de queso que
dos días antes Gregorio había descartado como incomible; un mendrugo de pan duro;
otro untado con mantequilla, y otro con mantequilla y sal. Volvió a traer la cazoleta, que
por lo visto quedaba destinada a Gregorio, pero ahora llena de agua. Y por delicadeza
(pues sabía que Gregorio no comería estando ella presente) se retiró cuanto antes y echó
la llave, sin duda para que Gregorio comprendiese que nadie le iba a importunar. Al ir
Gregorio a comer, sus antenas fueron sacudidas por una especie de vibración. Pero por
otra parte, sus heridas debían de haberse curado ya, pues no sintió ninguna molestia, cosa
que le sorprendió bastante, pues recordó que hacia más de un mes se había cortado un
dedo con un cuchillo y que el día anterior todavía le dolía. «¿Tendré menos sensibilidad
que antes?», pensó, mientras probaba golosamente el queso, que fue lo que más le atrajo.
Con gran avidez y llorando de alegría, devoró sucesivamente el queso, las legumbres y la
salsa. En cambio, los alimentos frescos le disgustaron: su olor mismo le resultaba
desagradable, hasta el punto de que apartó de ellos las cosas que quería comer.
Hacía un buen rato que había terminado y permanecido estirado perezosamente en
el mismo sitio, cuando la hermana, sin duda para darle tiempo a retirarse, empezó a girar
lentamente la llave. A pesar de estar medio dormido, Gregorio se sobresaltó y corrió a
ocultarse de nuevo debajo del sofá. Para permanecer allí, aunque sólo fue el breve tiempo
que su hermana estuvo en el cuarto, tuvo que hacer esta vez gran esfuerzo de voluntad,
pues, a consecuencia de la abundante comida, su cuerpo se había abultado lo suficiente
como para que apenas pudiera respirar en aquel reducido espacio. Un tanto sofocado,
contempló con los ojos desorbitados cómo su hermana, ajena a lo que le sucedía barría no
sólo los restos de la comida, sino también los alimentos que Gregorio no había tocado,
como si ya no pudiesen aprovecharse. Y vio también cómo lo tiraba todo a un cubo, que
cerró con una tapa de madera. Apenas se hubo marchado su hermana con el cubo,
Gregorio salió de su escondrijo, se estiró y respiró profundamente.
De esta manera recibió Gregorio, día tras día, su comida: una vez por la mañana
temprano, antes de que se levantaran sus padres y la criada, y otra después del almuerzo,
mientras los padres dormían la siesta y la criada salía a algún recado al que la mandaba la
hermana. Sin duda sus padres tampoco querían que Gregorio se muriese de hambre; pero
tal vez no hubieran podido soportar el espectáculo de sus comidas, y era mejor que sólo
tuvieran noticias de ellas a través de la hermana. Tal vez también quería ésta ahorrarles
un sufrimiento extra.
Gregorio no pudo averiguar con qué disculpas habían despedido la primera
mañana al médico y al cerrajero. Como nadie le entendía, nadie pensaba, ni siquiera su
hermana, que él pudiese entender a los demás. Tenía, pues, que contentarse, cuando su
hermana entraba en su cuarto, con oírla gemir y lamentarse. Más adelante, cuando ella se
hubo acostumbrado un poco a la nueva situación (desde luego no se podía esperar que se
acostumbrase por completo), Gregorio empezó a notar en ella ciertos indicios de
amabilidad. «Hoy sí que le ha gustado», decía, cuando Gregorio había apurado la comida;
mientras que en el caso contrario, cada vez más frecuente, solía decir apenada: «Vaya,
hoy lo ha dejado todo.»
Aunque Gregorio no podía obtener directamente ninguna noticia, siempre estaba
atento a lo que sucedía en las habitaciones contiguas, y en cuanto oía voces, corría hacia
la puerta correspondiente y se pegaba a ella. Al principio todas las conversaciones se
referían a él, aunque no claramente. Durante dos días, en todas las comidas se discutió lo
que correspondía hacer en lo sucesivo. También fuera de las comidas se hablaba de lo
mismo; ninguno de los miembros de la familia quería quedarse solo en casa, y como
tampoco querían dejarla abandonada, siempre había por lo menos dos personas. Ya el
primer día, la criada –de la que no sabían hasta que punto estaba enterada de lo ocurrido–
le había rogado a la madre que la despidiese en seguida, y al marcharse, un cuarto de hora
después, dando las gracias efusivamente y sin que nadie se lo pidiese, juró solemnemente
que no contaría nada a nadie.
La hermana tuvo que ayudar a cocinar a la madre, cosa que, en realidad, no le
daba mucho trabajo, pues casi no comían. Gregorio los oía continuamente animarse en
vano unos a otros a comer, siendo un «gracias, ya he comido bastante», u otra frase por el
estilo, la respuesta invariable a estos requerimientos. Tampoco bebían casi nada. Con
frecuencia preguntaba la hermana al padre si quería cerveza, ofreciéndose a ir a buscarla.
Callaba el padre, y entonces ella añadía que también podían mandar a la portera. Pero el
padre respondía finalmente con una negativa tajante, y no se hablaba más del asunto.
Ya el primer día el padre planteó a la madre y a la hermana la situación
económica de la familia y sus perspectivas futuras. De vez en cuando se levantaba de la
mesa para buscar en su pequeña caja de caudales –salvada de la quiebra cinco años
antes– algún documento o libro de notas. Se oía el chasquido de la complicada cerradura
al abrirse o volverse a cerrar, después de que el padre hubiese sacado lo que buscaba.
Estas explicaciones constituyeron la primera noticia agradable que escuchó Gregorio
desde su encierro. Siempre había creído que a su padre no le quedaba absolutamente
nada del antiguo negocio. El padre nunca le había dado a entender que fuera de otro
modo, aunque lo cierto era que Gregorio tampoco le había preguntado nada al respecto.
Por aquel entonces, Gregorio sólo se había preocupado de hacer lo posible para que su
familia olvidara cuanto antes el revés financiero que los había hundido en la más
completa desesperación. Por eso había comenzado a trabajar con tal ahínco,
convirtiéndose en poco tiempo, de simple dependiente, en todo un viajante de comercio,
con grandes posibilidades de ganar dinero, y cuyos éxitos profesionales se concretaban en
sustanciosas comisiones entregadas a la familia ante el asombro y alegría de todos.
Habían sido días felices. Pero no se habían repetido, al menos con igual esplendor, pese a
que Gregorio había llegado a ganar lo suficiente como para llevar por sí solo el peso de
toda la casa. La costumbre, tanto en la familia, que recibía agradecida el dinero de
Gregorio, como en éste, que lo entregaba con gusto, hizo que la sorpresa y alegría
iniciales no volvieran a producirse con la misma intensidad. Sólo la hermana permaneció
siempre estrechamente unida a Gregorio, y como, contrariamente a éste, era muy
aficionada a la música y tocaba el violín con gran entusiasmo, Gregorio confiaba en
poder mandarla al año siguiente al conservatorio, pese a los gastos que ello conllevaría, y
a los que ya encontraría modo de hacer frente. Durante las breves estancias de Gregorio
junto a los suyos, la palabra «conservatorio» se repetía con frecuencia en las charlas con
la hermana, pero siempre como un hermoso sueño, en cuya realización no se podía ni
soñar. Los padres no veían con agrado estos ingenuos proyectos; pero para Gregorio era
un asunto muy serio, y tenía decidido anunciarlo solemnemente la noche de Navidad.
Estos pensamientos, ahora tan superfluos, se agitaban en su mente mientras,
pegado a la puerta, escuchaba lo que hablaban en la habitación contigua. De cuando en
cuando, la fatiga le impedía seguir escuchando, y dejaba caer cansado la cabeza sobre la
puerta. Pero en seguida volvía a levantarla, pues incluso el levísimo ruido debido a este
movimiento suyo, era oído por su familia, que enmudecía en el acto.
- ¿Qué estará haciendo ahora? –decía al poco el padre, si duda mirando hacia la
Y, pasados unos momentos, se reanudaba la conversación interrumpida.
Así pudo enterarse Gregorio, con gran satisfacción –el padre se extendía en sus
explicaciones, pues hacia tiempo que no se había ocupado de aquellos asuntos, y además
la madre tardaba en entenderlos– que, a pesar de la desgracia les había quedado algún
dinero; no mucho, desde luego pero poco a poco había ido aumentando desde entonces,
gracias a los intereses intactos. Además, el dinero que entregaba Gregorio todos los
meses, quedándose para él únicamente una ínfima cantidad, no se gastaba por completo,
y había ido formando un pequeño capital. Tras la puerta, Gregorio aprobaba con la
cabeza, satisfecho de que existieran estas inesperadas reservas. Cierto que con ese dinero
sobrante podía haber pagado poco a poco la deuda que su padre tenía con el dueño, y
haberse visto libre de ella mucho antes; pero tal como estaban las cosas, era mejor así.
Ahora bien, ese dinero era del todo insuficiente para permitir a la familia vivir de
él; todo lo más bastaría para uno o dos años, pero no para más tiempo. Por tanto, era un
capital que no se debía tocar, pues convenía conservarlo para caso de necesidad. El
dinero para ir viviendo había que ganarlo. Pero el padre, aunque estaba bien de salud, era
ya viejo y llevaba cinco años sin trabajar; por tanto no se podía contar con él: en los
últimos cinco años, los primeros de descanso en su vida laboriosa, aunque fracasada,
había engordado mucho y se había vuelto lento y pesado. ¿Y cómo podría trabajar la
madre, que padecía de asma, que se fatigaba con sólo andar un poco por casa y
continuamente tenía que tumbarse en el sofá, con la ventana abierta de par en par, porque
le daban ahogos? ¿Tendría, entonces, que trabajar la hermana, una niña de diecisiete
años, y cuya envidiable existencia había consistido, hasta el momento, en ocuparse de sí
misma, dormir cuanto quería, ayudar en las tareas de la casa, participar en alguna sencilla
diversión y, sobre todo, tocar el violín?
Cada vez que la conversación derivaba hacia la necesidad de ganar dinero,
Gregorio se apartaba de la puerta y, trastornado por la pena y la vergüenza, se metía bajo
el fresco sofá de cuero. A menudo pasaba allí toda la noche en vela, arañando el cuero
hora tras hora. A veces llevaba a cabo el extraordinario esfuerzo de empujar el sillón
hasta la ventana y, agarrándose al alféizar, permanecía de pie en el asiento y apoyado en
la ventana, sumido en sus recuerdos, pues antes solía asomarse a menudo a aquella
Poco a poco empezó a ver con menos claridad. Ya no distinguía el hospital de
enfrente, cuya vista tanto le desagradaba; y de no haber sabido que vivía en una calle en
plena ciudad, aunque tranquila, hubiera podido creer que su ventana daba a un desierto,
en el cual se confundían el cielo y la tierra, igualmente grises.
Sólo dos veces vio la hermana, siempre atenta, que el sillón se encontraba junto a
la ventana. Y ya, al arreglar la habitación, aproximaba ella misma el sillón. Más aún:
dejaba abiertos los primeros dobles cristales.
Si al menos hubiera podido Gregorio hablar con su hermana; de haberle podido
dar las gracia por cuanto hacía por él, le hubieran resultado más leves las molestias que
ocasionaba, y que de este modo tanto le hacían sufrir. Sin duda, su hermana hacía lo
posible para atenuar lo doloroso de la situación, y, a medida que transcurría el tiempo, iba
consiguiéndolo mejor, como es natural. Pero también Gregorio, a medida que pasaban los
días, tenía más clara la situación.
Ahora, las visitas de su hermana eran para él algo terrible. En cuanto entraba en la
habitación, y sin cerrar siquiera previamente las puertas, como antes, para ocultar a todos
la vista del cuarto, iba corriendo hacia la ventana y la abría bruscamente, como si
estuviese a punto de asfixiarse; y hasta cuando el frío era intenso, permanecía allí un rato
respirando ansiosamente. Este ajetreo asustaba a Gregorio dos veces al día; aunque
convencido de que ella le hubiera evitado esas molestias, de haber podido permanecer en
la habitación con las ventanas cerradas, Gregorio se quedaba temblando debajo del sofá
todo el tiempo que duraba la visita.
Un día –ya había transcurrido un mes desde la metamorfosis, así que no tenía por
qué sorprenderse del aspecto de Gregorio– su hermana entró algo más temprano que de
costumbre y se lo encontró mirando inmóvil por la ventana. No le hubiera extrañado a
Gregorio que su hermana no entrase, pues tal como estaba le impedía abrir la ventana.
Pero no sólo no entró, sino que retrocedió y cerró la puerta rápidamente: quien la hubiera
visto reaccionar de esa forma hubiera creído que Gregorio se disponía a atacarla.
Gregorio se metió inmediatamente debajo del sofá; pero hasta el mediodía no volvió su
hermana, más intranquila que de costumbre. Este incidente le hizo comprender que su
vista seguía resultándole insoportable ala hermana, que sólo gracias a un esfuerzo de
voluntad evitaba echar a correr al divisar la pequeña parte del cuerpo que sobresalía por
debajo del sofá. Con objeto de ahorrarle por completo su visión, llevó un día sobre su
espalda –trabajó para el cual precisó de cuatro horas– una sábana hasta el sofá, y la puso
de modo que le tapara por completo y que su hermana no pudiese verle por mucho que se
De no haberle parecido oportuno tal medida, ella misma hubiera quitado la
sábana, pues fácil era comprender que, para Gregorio, el aislarse no era nada agradable.
Pero su hermana dejó la sábana tal como estaba, y Gregorio, al levantar sigilosamente
con la cabeza la punta de ésta, para ver como era acogida la nueva disposición, creyó
adivinar en la joven una mirada de gratitud.
Durante las dos primeras semanas, sus padres no se decidieron a entrar a verle. A
menudo los oyó alabar la actitud de la hermana, cuando hasta entonces solían, por el
contrario, considerarla poco menos que una inútil. Los padres solían esperar ante la
habitación de Gregorio mientras la hermana la arreglaba, y en cuanto salía se hacían
contar como estaba el cuarto, qué había comido Gregorio, cuál había sido su actitud y si
daba señales de mejoría.
La madre había querido visitar a Gregorio enseguida, pero el padre y la hermana
la habían hecho desistir con argumentos que Gregorio escuchó con la mayor atención y
aprobó por entero. Más adelante tuvieron que impedírselo por la fuerza, y cuando
exclamaba: «¡Dejadme entrar a ver a Gregorio! ¡Pobre hijo mío! ¿No comprendéis que
necesito verle?», Gregorio pensaba que tal vez fuera mejor que su madre entrase, no
todos lo días, pero sí, por ejemplo, una vez a la semana: ella era mucho más comprensiva
que la hermana, quien, pese a su indudable valor, al fin y al cabo no era más que una
niña, que quizá sólo por juvenil inconsciencia había podido asumir tan penosa tarea.
No tardó en cumplirse el deseo de Gregorio de ver a su madre. Durante el día, por
consideración a sus padres, no se asomaba a la ventana, y en los dos metros cuadrados de
suelo libre de su habitación casi no podía moverse. Descansar tranquilo le era ya difícil
durante la noche. La comida pronto dejó de causarle placer, y para distraerse empezó a
trepar zigzagueando por las paredes y el techo. En el techo era donde más a gusto se
encontraba: aquello era mucho mejor que estar echado en el suelo; respiraba mejor, y se
estremecía con una suave vibración. Un día Gregorio, casi feliz y despreocupado, se
desprendió del techo, con gran sorpresa suya, y se estrelló contra el suelo. Pero su cuerpo
se había vuelto más resistente y, pese a la fuerza del golpe, no se lastimó.
Su hermana advirtió inmediatamente el nuevo entretenimiento de Gregorio –tal
vez dejase al trepar un leve rastro de baba–, y quiso hacer todo lo posible para facilitarle
su actividad, quitando los muebles que le estorbaban, sobre todo el baúl y el escritorio.
No podía hacerlo sola y tampoco se atrevía a pedir ayuda al padre; con la criada no podía
contar, pues la buena mujer, de unos sesenta años, aunque se había mostrado muy
animosa desde la despedida de su antecesora, había rogado que le dejaran tener siempre
cerrada la puerta de la cocina, y no abrirla sino cua
El esplendor de la tragedia francesa

La tragedia neoclásica sigue los cánones y reglas de la tragedia grecolatina, inspirándose sobre todo en Euripides y Séneca. El sometimiento de los autores a las unidades de tiempo y lugar, fijadas por los preceptistas italianos del Renacimiento, da amplio margen al estudio psicológico de los personajes, que suelen ser de condición real o noble.

La necesidad de hacer transcurrir la acción en solo veinticuatro horas y un solo lugar obliga a los autores a condensar mucho la intriga. El desarrollo de la acción tiene que estar cuidadosamente encadenado, de forma que no atente contra las reglas establecidas. El rigor con que se aplicaban era total; a Comeille, un dramaturgo francés de la época, se le criticó duramente que en su tragedia "El Cid" -inspirada en una comedia española- la acción se trasladara de la calle al interior de la casa.

El teatro barroco español se había tomado muchas libertades, no sólo en lo que se refiere a las unidades de lugar y tiempo, sino también en el empleo de diferentes versos y estrofas. En cambio, el teatro francés del Neoclasicismo empleará casi exclusivamente el verso alejandrino.

Otra condición más tienen que cumplir las tragedias: suprimir las escenas sangrientas, porque se consideraban de mal gusto y poco ejemplares.

¿ De dónde sacaban los autores los asuntos de las tragedias?

De muy diversas fuentes; lo más frecuente es que se inspiren en temas de la tragedia grecolatina, en la historia antigua y en la Biblia; pero a veces extraen también argumentos de la historia nacional o extranjera. La Edad Media, sin embargo, desaparece prácticamente por considerarse una época ruda y poco civilizada.

Los personajes se mueven con fuertes sentimientos: la piedad, la ambición, el odio, el orgullo. Pero, a diferencia de la tragedia grecolatina, el hombre no sucumbe a las fuerzas cie¬gas de la fatalidad o el destino, sino que se salva o se condena a consecuencia de su modo de actuar, que es producto de su voluntad, de su razón y libertad. De ahí el carácter moral de la tragedia, que hace de la razón la regla que debe presidir los actos de los hombres. El coro de la tragedia clásica también desaparece.

La comedia, crítica de costumbres

Con la misma. finalidad moralizadora que la tragedia, la comedia neoclásica sigue los modelos de la comedia latina (Plauto y Terencio), y también de la comedia nueva griega (Menandro).

Del teatro de Plauto y Terencio toman los autores neoclásicos los prototipos humanos: los padres -viejos avaros y ridículos-, los jóvenes -irreflexivos y enamorados-, los criados -un poco groseros y otro poco ladrones-. Se suman a éstos al¬gunos tipos humanos de la época, como los pe.dantes, los devotos, y los cortesanos y cortesanas.

¿Qué intenta la comedia neoclásica? La comedia se vale de la intriga para ridiculizar y fustigar los vicios sociales. la hipocresia. el presumir.
Moliere. el comediógrafo más representativo de la época y uno de los más importantes de todo~ los tiempos. critica y ridiculiza loscjefectos de la sociedad francesa de su tiempo. incluida la nobleza; tampoco se abstiene de hacer extensiva su critica al rey y a la Iglesia. que por muchas razones eran intocables.

Toda una vida entregada al teatro

Moliere es el creador de la comedia francesa. El teatro francés de aquellos momentos era una imitación de los clásicos, que lo alejaban de la tradición literaria francesa. y él tuvo el acierto de saber aprovechar la corriente clasicista, junto con una serie de elementos tradicionales, marcando una nueva dirección llena de impulso y de características propias de su país.

Juan Bautista Poquelin, verdadero nombre de Moliere, nació en París en el seno de una familia acomodada de la burguesía comerciante. Estudió primero con los jesuitas, y, más tarde, la carrera de Derecho.

Bien pronto su vocación por el mundo del teatro le hace abandonar una situación estable y un futuro como comerciante o como abogado. Muy joven se une a unos "cómicos", gentes que entonces estaban muy mal consideradas e incluso despreciadas por la "buena sociedad". Abandona todo y cambia su buena situación por una vida errante.

Durante doce años recorre Francia como actor y lentamente se va iniciando como autor teatral. con pequeñas piezas llenas de humor y divertida sátira costumbrista. Formó su propia compañía y compaginó sus actuaciones con la producción de comedias, que le dieron un gran éxito ante todo tipo de públicos, llegando a ser protegido por el rey Luis XIV.

Murió repentinamente, representando una de sus obras, "El enfermo imaginario", habiendo dado al teatro su vida en¬tera y su capacidad como escritor inteligente, dedicación que la posteridad compensó con el éxito ininterrumpido de sus obras en todo el mundo.

Observando la vida

Como hombre culto conocía bien a los autores del teatro clásico, y también a los dramaturgos contemporáneos extran¬jeros, escogiendo de ambos ideas y temas para sus obras.
Su vida errante en los primeros años de actor, y en la corte después, le dio ocasión para conocer y estar en contacto con la realidad humana de la totalidad de la Francia de aquella época. Era buen observador y supo ver con claridad las facetas más ridículas del comportamiento humano. Cada una de sus co¬medias es una caricatura alegre y divertida de alguno de estos tipos ridículos, como el hipócrita, el avaro, las mujeres sabihondas o los médicos pedantes.

Desenmascarando lo ridículo

Gran parte de sus comedias están escritas en verso, dificultando un poco la agilidad y la gracia de su estilo. Los escritos en prosa son un modelo del dominio que Moliere poseía para crear situaciones cómicas, acentuando los aspectos ridículos con un humor agudo y elegante que nunca cae en lo grosero. El lenguaje con que hace hablar a sus personajes es variado y adecuado siempre al tipo que representa.
Parece que este autor no tuvo intención de moralizar, sino solamente de hacer reir, según sus propias afirmaciones. No pretende desarraigar esos defectos o vicios que retrata con estilo burlón y divertido; quizás el fondo de su obra sea un ataque a todo lo excesivo y a la falta de moderación y equilibrio.

Galería de caricaturas humanas

"Las preciosas ridículas" es un retrato caricaturesco de las damas cultas y pedantes de la corte, volviendo a insistir en el mismo tema con "Las mujeres sabias", El 'Tartufo" presenta a un beato hipócrita que esconde un alma ruin y que intenta aprovecharse de la piedad de un bondadoso padre de familia. Otros tipos son "El avaro", "El misántropo", tomados todos ellos de la realidad, sin inventar ni deformar nada, solamente exagerando estos defectos. "El burgués gentilhombre" es el caso de un "nuevo rico" que quiere comportarse, inútilmente, de manera adecuada en su nueva esfera social. Los médicos fueron objeto de sus más finas y enconadas burlas por su pedantería y su lenguaje cabalístico con el que trataban de impresionar a la gente. "El médico a la fuerza" (o "a palos", como fue traducido en principio) narra las visicitudes de un pobre palurdo que se ve obligado a ejercer como doctor, tratando de imitar la fraseología oscura de éstos.
La sátira de Moliére está enlazada con el estilo sencillo de los "fabliaux", típicamente franceses, y por ello su obra encaja con la tradición y el gusto franceses, haciéndole creador de un estilo propio de este país en el teatro. La universalidad y el éxito constante de su obra se debe a la creación de esos tipos tan humanos, propios de cualquier sociedad de todos los tiempos.

OBRAS DE MOLIERE: "Tartufo", "El avaro", "El misántropo", "El burgués gentilhombre", "Las preciosas ridículas", "Las mujeres sabias", "El médico a palos", "El enfermo imaginario".


A efectos legales se considera que Asimov nació el 2 de enero de 1920 en Petróvichi de Gobernación Mogilevskaya, Bielorrusia (desde 1929 hasta ahora Óblast de Smolensk, Rusia, a 400 km al suroeste de Moscú y 16 kilómetros de la frontera con Bielorrusia actual). Sus padres, Judah Asimov y Anna Rachel, de origen judeo-ruso, se trasladan a Nueva York el 11 de enero de 1923, cuando el autor tenía tres años.
Su infancia transcurre en el barrio neoyorkino de Brooklyn, donde el joven Isaac aprende por sí mismo a leer a la edad de cinco años. La juventud de Isaac transcurre entre los estudios y el trabajo en las distintas tiendas de golosinas que su padre rentaba en el barrio de Brooklyn. Fue entre esos estantes llenos de revistas donde el joven Isaac se encuentra por primera vez con la ciencia ficción. En su adolescencia temprana escribe sus propias historias y a los 19 años comienza la publicación de sus relatos de ciencia ficción en las revistas (ahora clásicas) de ficción llamadas «pulps».
Se gradúa como bioquímico en la Universidad de Columbia en 1939. Al ser rechazado para ingresar a las escuelas de medicina de las universidades de Nueva York, regresó a Columbia y decidió tomar un postgrado de química, título que obtuvo en 1941. El siguiente año, 1942, fue particularmente significativo para Asimov, al partir hacia la ciudad de Filadelfia donde tomó un trabajo como investigador químico en los astilleros de la marina de guerra estadounidense, empleo que mantendría en el transcurso de la Segunda Guerra Mundial. En 1948 consigue el doctorado en química accediendo a la Universidad de Boston, donde permanecerá como asociado pero sin opción a enseñar. La universidad deja de pagarle el salario en 1958, pero para entonces, los ingresos procedentes de su trabajo como escritor son mayores que los que consigue con su labor universitaria. Asimov permanece en la facultad como profesor asociado, y en 1979 le ascienden a profesor titular. Sus documentos personales de los años 1965 en adelante se archivan en la Biblioteca Mugar Memorial de la Universidad de Boston, donde ocupan 464 cajas en 71 m de estanterías. En 1985 es elegido Presidente de la Asociación Humanista Americana, cargo que ocupa hasta su muerte en 1992. El sucesor, amigo y colega de Asimov en su trabajo como escritor fue Kurt Vonnegut. Fue también, hasta su muerte, vicepresidente honorario del club Mensa.
Asimov se casa el 26 de julio de 1942 con Gertrude Blugerman, con la que tiene dos hijos: David, nacido en 1951 y Robyn, en 1955. Tras un largo periodo de separación, se divorcian en 1973 y a finales de ese año se casa con Janet O. Jeppson.
Asimov muere el 6 de abril de 1992 tras un fallo coronario y renal. Le sobreviven su viuda Janet y sus hijos habidos en su primer matrimonio. En 2002, Janet Asimov reveló en su propia biografía que la muerte de Isaac Asimov fue debida al SIDA, enfermedad que contrajo durante una operación de bypass en 1982.

Posición intelectual

Isaac Asimov fue un humanista y un racionalista. No se opuso a las convicciones religiosas genuinas de los demás, pero se enfrentó a las supersticiones y a las creencias infundadas. Tenía un miedo a volar que hizo que sólo viajara en avión dos veces en toda su vida, lo que le hizo pensar que podía padecer de acrofobia. Asimismo padecía claustrofilia, es decir, le gustaban los lugares pequeños y cerrados.
Asimov era un progresista en temas políticos, y un seguidor incondicional del Partido Demócrata de los Estados Unidos. En una entrevista televisiva a principios de los setenta, respaldó públicamente a George McGovern. Se sintió muy desilusionado cuando vio las tácticas, que él consideraba irracionales, de los activistas progresistas desde finales de los años sesenta en adelante.
Su defensa de las aplicaciones civiles de la energía nuclear sobre todo tras el accidente nuclear de la Isla de las Tres Millas dañó sus relaciones con la izquierda. Publicó mucho sobre el control de la natalidad, reflejando la perspectiva articulada por Paul R. Ehrlich.
En los últimos años de su vida, Asimov condenó el deterioro de la calidad de vida que percibía en la ciudad de Nueva York al reducirse las inversiones por la huida de la clase media a los suburbios. Su último libro de no ficción, «La Ira de la Tierra», escrito junto con otro autor de ciencia ficción, Frederik Pohl, trata de aspectos medioambientales como el calentamiento global y la destrucción de la capa de ozono.


La carrera de Asimov puede dividirse en varios períodos. En sus primeros años el tema dominante fue la ciencia ficción, iniciándose con relatos cortos en 1939. En 1950 publica su primera novela Un guijarro en el cielo. Esta etapa duró hasta 1958, terminando con la publicación de El sol desnudo. A continuación, disminuyó de manera importante su producción de libros de ficción mientras se dedicaba a otros temas. En los siguientes 25 años publicó solamente cuatro libros de ciencia ficción. A partir de 1982, se inició la segunda etapa de su carrera en ciencia ficción con la publicación de Los límites de la Fundación. Desde entonces y hasta su muerte, Asimov publicaría muchas secuelas de sus novelas ya escritas, dándoles un tratamiento de conjunto en una forma que seguramente no había él mismo previsto.
Según su punto de vista, Asimov pensaba que sus contribuciones más duraderas serían las Tres Leyes de la Robótica y la serie Fundaciones (véase Yours, Isaac Asimov, p. 329). Más aún, el Diccionario de inglés de Oxford le da crédito al introducir las palabras positrónico, psicohistoria y robótica en el idioma inglés. La primera de estas palabras se aplica a una tecnología enteramente ficticia, aunque basada en el nombre de la partícula subatómica de antimateria opuesta al Electrón, el Positrón, mientras que la segunda se utiliza con frecuencia en un sentido diferente al empleado por Asimov; sin embargo, el uso de robótica continúa aplicándose con el sentido dado por Asimov.

Cronología de novelas y colecciones de relatos cortos de ciencia ficción

· Yo, Robot (1950) (colección de relatos)
· Un guijarro en el cielo (1950)
· En la arena estelar una de las traducciones del nombre The Stars Like Dust (1951)
· Fundación (1951)
· Fundación e Imperio (1952)
· Las corrientes del espacio (1952)
· Serie de novelas de Lucky Starr (1952-1958, escritas con el seudónimo de Paul French)
· Segunda Fundación (1953)
· Las bóvedas de acero (1954)
· El fin de la eternidad (1955)
· El sol desnudo (1957)
· Viaje Alucinante (1966)
· Los propios dioses (1972)
· El hombre bicentenario y otras historias (1976)
· Cambio! 71 visiones del futuro (1981)
· Los límites de la Fundación (1982)
· Los robots del amanecer (1983)
· Robots e Imperio (1985)
· Fundación y Tierra (1986)
· Sueños de Robot (1986)
· Viaje Alucinante 2: Destino cerebro (1987)
· Preludio a la Fundación (1988)
· Némesis (1989)
· Cuentos completos I (1990)
· Anochecer (1990) (con Robert Silverberg)
· Visiones de Robot (1991)
· Cuentos completos II (1992)
· Hacia la Fundación (1993) (póstuma)

Divulgación histórica

A partir de 1965 y hasta mediados de los setenta, Asimov compagina la creación literaria de ficción con la divulgación histórica a través de varios libros que comprenden las más importantes civilizaciones y periodos históricos. Como por ejemplo la Egipcia, Griega y Romana, pasando por la Edad Media, el descubrimiento del Nuevo Mundo y la formación de Estados Unidos. El autor trata de atraer al gran público al conocimiento de la historia a través de una narración amena y sencilla. Se trata principalmente de historia político/militar.
Esta serie de obras ha sido común e informalmente llamada: Historia Universal Asimov y está compuesta por 14 volúmenes con mapas y cronología incluidas en cada uno de ellos.

Temática literaria

Gran parte de la ficción de Asimov se basa en el tema del paternalismo. Su primera historia de robots, «Robbie», cuenta la historia de una niñera robótica. A medida que los robots se hacen más sofisticados, sus intervenciones son más sutiles. En «Evidencia», un robot camuflado como humano consigue un cargo electo. En «El conflicto evitable», los robots quitan el protagonismo a la Humanidad, actuando como niñeras de toda la especie.
Posteriormente, en «Robots e Imperio», un robot desarrolla lo que se llama la «Ley Cero de la robótica», que establece que «un robot no puede dañar a la Humanidad, ni por inacción, permitir que ésta se ponga en peligro». También decide que la presencia robótica está sofocando la libertad de la Humanidad, por lo que la mejor línea de acción es la desaparición por sí mismos de los robots. Una historia que no es de robots, «El fin de la eternidad», muestra un conflicto similar y una misma resolución.
En la serie de la Fundación, que originalmente no tenía robots, el personaje Hari Seldon desarrolla la ciencia llamada psicohistoria a través de la que podrá lograrse crear un imperio después de 1.000 años. Esta serie tiene su propia versión de los guardianes de la República de Platón en el libro «Segunda Fundación», que perfeccionan y protegen el plan. Cuando Asimov termina de escribir la serie en los años cincuenta, la Segunda Fundación eran presentados como los protectores de la Humanidad. Cuando en los años ochenta revisita la serie, le da un tono aún más explícito al tema paternalista.
En «Los límites de la Fundación» introduce el planeta «Gaia», obviamente basándose en la hipótesis Gaia. Todo animal, planta y mineral de Gaia participan de una conciencia común, formando una super-mente que trabaja conjuntamente para el bien común. Al final de esta novela, el protagonista Golan Trevize debe decidir si permite o no el desarrollo de «Galaxia», una mayor versión de Gaia que abarca toda la galaxia. Además se introduce a los robots en el universo de la Fundación.
Aun así, es en «Fundación y Tierra» donde aparecen los primeros robots de la serie que interactúan con los personajes. Y las posteriores precuelas, «Preludio a la Fundación» y «Hacia la Fundación», exploran su comportamiento con mayor detalle. Los robots se han revelado como ocultos benefactores de la humanidad.
Otro tema frecuente, tal vez el revés del paternalismo, es la opresión social. «Las corrientes del espacio» toma lugar en un planeta donde crece un fibro-vegetal único, y a los campesinos los explotan los aristócratas de un planeta cercano. El héroe de «En la arena estelar» ayuda a un planeta que es oprimido por un arrogante imperio interplanetario, los Tyrann.
Las víctimas de la opresión son muchas veces la gente de la Tierra (a diferencia de colonos en el espacio) o los robots. En «El hombre Bicentenario» un robot lucha contra el prejuicio para hacerse aceptar como humano. En «Bóvedas de acero», la gente de la Tierra siente antipatía hacia los ricos «espaciales» de otros planetas y trata a los robots (asociados con los espaciales) de una forma semejante a la de los norteamericanos blancos trataban a los negros a principios del siglo XX, por ejemplo, dirigiéndose a ellos como muchacho. «El guijarro en el cielo» muestra una situación parecida: el Imperio Galáctico gobierna la Tierra y su gente usa términos tales como Miserable terrícola (Earthie-squaw), sucio terráqueo o simplemente terráqueo, pero la Tierra es una dictadura teocrática que impone la eutanasia a todos a la edad de sesenta años. Los héroes son Bel Arvardan, hidalgo galáctico que tiene que superar sus prejuicios y Joseph Schwartz, un sesentón estadounidense del siglo XX que había emigrado desde Europa, donde su pueblo fue perseguido (es bien posible que fuera judío), y se encuentra transportado en el tiempo hasta la época de Arvardan. Tiene que decidir si ayuda a una sociedad oprimida que no lo considera apto para seguir viviendo.
Aun otro tema frecuente de Asimov es el pensamiento racional. Fusionó el misterio policíaco con la ciencia ficción en la novela «Bóvedas de acero» (1954) y en los cuentos de «Misterios de Asimov», en los que generalmente jugaba limpio con el lector introduciendo temprano toda ciencia y tecnología involucrada en la resolución de la trama. Más tarde produjo obras de ficción policíaca, incluyendo la novela «Asesinato en la convención» y los «cuentos de los Viudos Negros», en los que siguió la misma regla. Frecuentemente en toda su ficción, las escenas importantes son esencialmente debates, siendo el ganador el lado más racional, el más humanitario, o simplemente el más persuasivo.
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          Art Trap Productions: We Review 'Smile' on Doctor Who: Podshock 340   

Doctor Who: Podshock

Doctor Who: Podshock - Episode 340
Running Time: 1:29:18

We review the second episode of the 2017 series (AKA "Series 10"), 'Smile', plus news and more. Hosted by Louis Trapani, Dave Cooper, Lee Shackleford, and Kyle Jones.

read more

          Art Trap Productions: Doctor Who: Podshock 340 Reviews 'The Pilot' and Remembers Taras Hnatyshyn   

Doctor Who: Podshock 339

Doctor Who: Podshock - Episode 339
Running Time: 2:21:06

We review the first episode of the 2017 series (AKA "Series 10"), 'The Pilot', guest co-host and friend Taras Hnatyshyn remembered, plus news and more. Hosted by Louis Trapani, Dave Cooper, Ian Bisset, and Kyle Jones.

read more

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          Re: Burundi gays grapple with HIV   
“I know so many married men in this town who sleep with gay men on the side...”

Local perceptions of homosexuality mean the distribution of lubricants and condoms has to be cloak-and-dagger, with many secretly homosexual men making calls and asking for the items to be despatched in plain envelopes to offices or residences, by people not associated with ARDHO.

"We never ask people for their ethnicity or religion before we give them medication or other HIV support, so why should we ask people about their sexuality?" ANSS founder Jeanne Gapiya, a prominent national HIV activist, told IRIN/PlusNews.

"The problem is that this is a hidden community, and the society is in denial about their existence."

In their latest national strategic plan, the National AIDS Control Council, CNLS, has included MSM in the list of people vulnerable to HIV.

"We realise that they are a marginalised group; we have started to invite them for meetings through their NGO, but the difficulty is we don't know who most of them are or how to reach them," Jean Rirangira, the interim executive secretary of CNLS, told IRIN/PlusNews.

Kanuma commented: "It's not just a problem for gay men; it's a problem for the whole society. I know so many married ['straight'] men in this town [the Burundian capital, Bujumbura] who sleep with gay men on the side. People would be surprised," he said.

"Silence is also what is killing us," he added. "I had a friend who had an STI for about one year - he was self-medicating until he eventually went to ANSS and got a proper diagnosis, and then he got better much quicker."

Kanuma has been writing newspaper articles and making guest appearances on private radio stations to raise awareness about MSM and HIV. "During every radio show I allow people to call in with questions and give out ARDHO's email address," he said. "We have more than 150 emails and so many calls, which shows that more information is still needed."

ARDHO is creating brochures detailing all the means of transmitting HIV, including male-male sex, for distribution in mainstream health centres; ANSS plans to send a doctor outside of Burundi for special training in the health issues of MSM to provide them with better healthcare.

HIV prevalence in Burundi has been declining since the late 1990s, but many surveillance sites have recently indicated an upward trend; in May, officials announced that HIV infection had risen from 3.5 percent in 2002 to 4.2 percent in 2008.

Although progress is slow, ARDHO and its partners are unwilling to push the government too hard, preferring to negotiate from a public health platform before demanding for equality under the law. "We need to tread carefully so we don't make the situation worse for gays in Burundi," Kanuma said.

From Mamba website
          BLOODY HELL!   
Over a four hour period yesterday evening and into this morning I was in the emergency unit of the local hospital.

Blood was pouring from my mouth like a macabre gargoyle and having been first to the nearest health centre, only to find the two doctors on duty were out on call, I went to the hospital.

As I entered with a bloody towel round my mouth I was immediately ushered in so see a doctor who told me my blood pressure was through the roof and convinced herself that I had said I had a bad heart. I don’t but it is difficult to talk with a mouth full of blood and I nearly had a heart attack when I found out.

Having had two different mouth washes over half an hour the flow of blood began to ease finally halting after around an hour and a half. It started again when I laughed out loud so I refused to speak or smile from there on. I was kept in whilst they did some tests; to make sure the bleeding didn’t restart and so they could check my blood pressure again.

When I was called back in around two in the morning the consulting room floor was covered in blood, not mine, and a person with a mop and bucket arrived to clean up whilst the doctor went through my test results.

They re-did the blood pressure test. I explained my pressure was usually normal but I had been very tense because of the blood and rushing around –convinced I was bleeding to death if the truth were known.

I added I was still rather tense what with a woman being rushed in to give birth, an old woman in a wheel chair crying out in pain, an old man also in a wheelchair as silent as the grave, various women clutching parts of their anatomy, a young man rushed off to trauma, various family members gathering to peer and poke at a loved one - all of whom had at one time or another been gathered around me that night in the emergency waiting room.

I was solemnly told my blood pressure was now just slightly higher than it should be but – normal for a man of my age!

It was as I left I passed a small room in to which had been seemingly crammed all the people who had shared the waiting room of the emergency unit with me. It was a bizarre scene of which Goya would have been proud. I stared in disbelief at them as they stared back at me with blank faces. I decided the time to discuss hallucinations with the doctor had passed and went home to sleep – which I did very well.

However in the morning I couldn’t help wondering over what I had seen.

Bloody hell indeed.
I have written a number of articles about the desperate plight of the homeless in La Línea. The town hall is bankrupt and cannot pay its workers on time so what hope is there for those with nothing?

I have also written about Mary Finlay who lives in San Roque. She was so moved by the appalling situation in the border town that each Wednesday she and a team take hot drinks, food and clothing to these people sheltered in doorways, the old bunkers and abandoned buildings.

When I first wrote about her work and gave her contact details in various local publications a number of readers contacted Mary to offer their help. No real surprise there because that is what by nature good people do.

This weekend the tragic news of the death of Galeote reached me. He was one of the homeless of La Línea who died leaning against a wall outside the day centre in broad daylight.

Mary told me: “Poor man he was the first that we ever came across the first night we started, so pleasant, eloquent, and extremely grateful for contact.

After a few weeks he said that he had decided to try and gain admittance to a centre because not only was he crippled with arthritis after so many winters out of doors he felt completely isolated from people and was in need of that warmth which we hopefully were showing him. He was taking tablets prescribed by the doctor to stop drinking to enable him to gain admittance.

“A few weeks ago he had to be taken by the volunteers to the emergency department of La Línea hospital because he looked as if he was dying of pneumonia, he had a few days respite and then was put out on the street again, swigging back medicine for his cough but he was never well again; apparently it wasn’t pneumonia but the effects of very heavy heroin addiction.

“On Wednesday, he was standing outside the day centre and after asking after him, he told one of the centre’s users that he didn't feel well, but not to call an ambulance, next thing she knew a lot of foamy saliva was coming out of his mouth. She rushed in to say that poor Galeote was dying but they thought it was the effect of tablets and nothing to worry about. But that was how it happened, he was actually standing leaning against the wall when he died.”

Mary went on to add: “A few weeks ago he completely shaved his head and beard off, I think he knew he wasn’t going to be around much longer.”

My final word goes to Por Un Mundo Más Justo who sent me an email detailing much of the same story. He touchingly writes: “Espero y creo firmemente que nuestro amigo Galeote ha pasado de ser de un P.S.H (Persona Sin Hogar) a un A.C.H (Ángel Con Hogar).”

Amen to that.

(Photograph shows one of La Línea’s WWII bunkers where the homeless shelter)
I was curious to read the findings of a survey as to how the people of Andalucía view their public and private health services. Four out of ten people with private insurance would still opt to go to a SAS public hospital if they had a serious illness because they prefer to be treated by doctors and nurses in the health service. In contrast three out of ten of those with insurance would opt for a private hospital or clinic.

The results come from a study carried out by the Asociación de Empresas Sanitarias de Prestación Asistencial de Andalucía (Aespaa) with a grant from the Andalucía ministry of health. It was carried out amongst 925 users of the Aliad private health service in 17 private centres in Málaga, Sevilla, Almería, Granada, Córdoba and Granada.

Of the patients questioned 45.9 per cent use the private health service more frequently than the public, 37.8 per cent opt for public whilst 14.6 per cent use both equally.

However if the patients were faced with a serious illness then 41.5 per cent would go to the public hospital, 31.1 per cent to the private whereas 22.1 per cent were undecided which they’d use.

Aespaa says the findings show that the majority of insured users of the health system would switch between one and the other. However when it came to choosing one over the other in cases of serious illness there was a higher confidence in the medical staff and facilities of the health service.

In contrast the comforts of the private hospitals and clinics were more highly valued than the often shared hospital rooms of the public sector. On this point alone 85.6 per cent would opt for private treatment both on the comfort factor and the speed with which they would be seen.

The most loyal users of the health service in Andalucía according to the survey are to be found in Cádiz province where less than 5 per cent would go private. This is at complete odds with other provinces where the figure is between 55 and 65 per cent. Bucking the trend in the opposite direction is Málaga province where 71 per cent would opt for private treatment over the SAS.

In 2006 I was both registered with the health service and had private insurance. When I was taken in to hospital in an emergency it was to the SAS hospital in La Línea. I was more than happy with the care and treatment I received from the health service specialists and nursing staff both during my stay and subsequent after care. However after five days in a shared room, during which time my mobile phone was stolen, I did consider using my insurance to switch to a private hospital although in the event I was released so it did not become an issue.

In 2003 my then partner was diagnosed with terminal cancer. She had private insurance but had both health service and private treatment. Her insurance company is part of a UK group but whilst it covered hospitals, doctors, cancer specialists, radiotherapy and chemotherapy there were some expensive oddities. For instance the insurance covered her chemo but not connecting it to her arm that she had to pay for herself. To connect her to the chemo could cost between 50 and 150 euros per session depending on what was required. In her case it was 75 euros, or at least 300 euros a month. If the SAS hospital prescribed her medicine it was with a prescription, hence the morphine came free. Yet during her last chemo session the clinic gave me a prescription for a series of injections the cost of which was 400 euros for just five days supply.

For my part I have cancelled my private insurance and opted to go with the health service which has served me well. One key reason is that if I have private insurance, whilst I could enjoy more comfortable care, I could equally be caught in the trap of having to find huge amounts of cash for drugs or say a chemo link at a time when I could least afford it. Now more and more health service hospitals are being built with single rooms for patients the comfort issue should also be less of a concern.

However I am gratified to see Andalucía’s health service doctors and nurses so highly rated by those with private insurance – they certainly have never let me down.
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          Dear BIR Commissioner: Doctors are Noble and Not "Cheats"   
The medical profession suffered another blow from BIR (Bureau of Internal Revenue) when the agency approved the release of its latest advertisement regarding the payment of taxes. The AD shows a lady doctor piggybacking on a teacher with the caption : “When you don’t pay your taxes, you’re a burden to those who do. Do your share. knowyourtaxes.ph.”

The Philippine Medical Association headed by Dr. Leo Olarte, voiced out the sentiments of the physicians that the said AD generalized all doctors as tax cheats. The PMA asked the BIR to take down tha offending AD but Commissioner Kim Henares said that AD in question was not offending or insulting since the print AD was a statement of fact.

What is wrong with this?

Yes. There are doctors who do not pay the correct taxes  but there are other professionals who do not pay the correct taxes too. Heck!  I guess most politician and their cohorts do not pay the correct taxes! Why not go after these people? Why not go after those who "fix" their taxes c/o legitimate BIR representatives?

The print ad was in bad taste. Disrespectful. Offending. Insulting. Demeaning. What was Kim Henares thinking? 

Henares forgot to consider the nobleness of the medical profession. True. There are doctors who are filthy rich because of their practice as there are doctors who barely make ends meet because they have dedicated their life in "really" helping those who need their services. It does not follow that those rich doctors and "poor" doctors  are tax cheats!   A survey of the best paying job indicated that doctors ranked only 5th.

I know a particular doctor who does pro bono surgeries on a weekly basis. He said that due to the BIR ruling, he now has to charge his charity patients 100PHP instead of them presenting an affidavit of free medical services.Why? An affidavit costs at least 300 PHP therefore it's cheaper  (for the patient) to just pay 100 PHP professional fee.

In connection, a brief demonstration was led by Alliance of Concerned Teachers (ACT) and Gabriela on Friday, March 6.  Shoulder to shoulder, teachers and doctors condemned the BIR AD that portrays doctors as tax evaders. The  protesting group challenged the BIR to go after  conglomerates and business tycoons instead of doctors (and other professionals).

Kim Henares. What gives? Why are you so fixated with doctors?

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          Mentally Ill Cuckold Husband Could Only Watch How Black Doctor Banging His Ultra Hot Milf Wife   
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          Doctor Fucks Girl In Coma   
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          By: Zoë O'Connell   
You can get estrogen over-the-counter in some countries, like Spain. Everything I've seen says that other than messing with any remaining reproductive organs, Estradiol Valerate is only dangerous to men because they'd go nuts. You can't even realistically overdose on it. Russell did try to use HRT as a diagnostic tool, (Drugs as diagnostics are common in the psych world, just not elsewhere) but was censured by the GMC for it - they're rather fond of their "first, do no harm" maxim, even if inaction does harm. There were rumors HRT would become over-the-counter, I'll have to chedk up on where that is. It removes a large amount of the control - both perceived and real - that doctors have over the whole process. (Oh, and the banket 28-day limit on prescriptions annoys the hell out of me too, that might be a PCT thing though)
          20 Years of Public Health Economics and Decision Sciences at the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: The CDC Steven M. Teutsch Prevention Effectiveness Fellowship, 1995-2015   
imageThe CDC Steven M. Teutsch Prevention Effectiveness Fellowship was started in 1995 to provide postdoctoral training in public health economics. This article describes the origins and state of the fellowship and the practice of prevention effectiveness research at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The fellowship can be seen as one successful example of a demand-driven public health innovation to develop crucial capacity for the contemporary health system. Nearly 150 individuals have been trained through the program since its inception.
          Louisiana Supreme Court Grants Appeal Of Medical Malpractice Lawsuit   
NEW ORLEANS - The Louisiana Supreme Court on Feb. 3 agreed to hear an insurer's appeal of an appeals court's finding that a lower court abused its discretion in denying claimants' motion for a new trial in their medical malpractice lawsuit against the insurer and its doctor insured (Alfred Dupree, et al. v. Louisiana Medical Mutual Ins. Co., et al., No. 2011-C-2453, La. Sup.).
          Split 5th Circuit Grants Qualified Immunity To Doctors Who Treated Inmate   
NEW ORLEANS - Physicians who performed a radical hysterectomy on an incarcerated woman are entitled to qualified immunity after the inmate sued claiming that her constitutional rights were violated when her ovary and lymph nodes were removed allegedly without her consent, a split Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel ruled Feb. 3 (Carrie Rahat Sama v. Doctor Edward Hannigan, et al., No. 10-40835, 5th Cir.; 2012 U.S. App. LEXIS 2107).
          Unas 111 Personas optaron por el suicidio asistido en California   

La Prensa

Los Ángeles, Estados Unidos.

Un total de 111 personas optaron por el suicidio asistido en California en los seis primeros meses tras la aprobación de una ley, en junio del año pasado, que permite a los enfermos terminales solicitar una serie de fármacos para acabar con su vida.

Según un estudio publicado hoy, esas personas se encontraban dentro de un grupo de 191 enfermos que recibieron las prescripciones necesarias por parte de sus doctores, y por lo tanto no todos decidieron finalmente emplear los fármacos.

La llamada "End of Life Option Act" entró en efecto hace un año y convirtió a California en el quinto estado de la nación en permitir a determinados pacientes, aquellos con una esperanza de vida menor a seis meses, solicitar una serie de fármacos a sus médicos para acabar voluntariamente con sus vidas.

Acusan de abuso sexual a pareja que atrajo a menor a vivir en EUALas cifras oficiales del estudio presentado hoy por el estado aseguran que seis de cada 10,000 muertes en California entre junio y diciembre de 2016 se llevaron a cabo mediante este procedimiento.

Se trata de un porcentaje muy inferior comparado con el 37,2 por ciento de cada 10,000 muertes el año pasado en el estado de Oregón, el primero en legalizar esta práctica, en 1998.

En cualquier caso, Oregón también presentó una cifra muy baja durante 1998, ya que únicamente 24 personas solicitaron los fármacos.

El 59 por ciento de las 111 personas que optaron por el suicidio asistido en California sufría de cáncer.

Trump se reúne con víctimas de crímenes cometidos por inmigrantesLos datos aportados por el estado reflejan, asimismo, que un total de 173 médicos fueron los encargados de autorizar las 191 prescripciones.

Según la ley, para que una persona tenga acceso a la prescripción, al menos dos doctores deben confirmar que el paciente tiene una esperanza de vida inferior a los seis meses y que se encuentra en condiciones mentales aptas para tomar la decisión de suicidarse.

Para ello no se requiere de una evaluación psiquiátrica, pero para aquellos casos en los que haya dudas, los médicos deben referir a los pacientes a una consulta con un especialista.


          Dr TenKate is the best in her field!!!!   
My daughter is Dr.Veronica TenKate's patient. She has been seeing her since my daughter was about 6 months old,she is now 12 and she LOVES Dr.TenKate. Every time my daughter has a appointment Dr.TenKate takes her time and talks to my daughter, and she knows exactly what she is doing-- the best pediatric doctor in Tampa!! I feel blessed to have found her and my daughter has expressed how sad she will be when she is too old to be Dr TenKate's patient.
          Why Black History Month Still Matters   

The stories that a nation tells about its history provide a foundation for building community, creating institutions and transmitting values. For a pluralistic democracy such as the United States, the work that historians call "constructing a usable past" is vital to the task of building a future. That's why it's imperative that people who want that future to be built on principles of inclusion, mutual respect and genuinely equal opportunity should understand and embrace commemorations such as Black History Month.

Let me start with a disclosure: I am a member of the advisory board of the Association for the Study of African American Life and History (ASALH), the organization that founded what is now known as Black History Month. I receive no compensation for that position; I do it to repay a debt to educators and scholars whose work was essential to my survival and development. The views presented here are strictly my own, and do not represent the opinions of ASALH.

The learning opportunities afforded by Black History Month (and other related celebrations devoted to the history of other groups who have been traditionally under-represented or misrepresented in social studies curricula) offer the following benefits:

  • They can help children of African descent form a positive self-concept and a critical perspective on the negative propaganda about blackness that continues to encourage self-sabotaging behavior among black youth.
  • They can promote informed conversation about "race" because the historical formation of the concept of "blackness" is linked to the process by which "whiteness" was constructed. As Judy Helfand explains: "Whiteness is defined by determining who is not white; it is defined as the superior opposite of non-white."
  • They offer insight and context for contemporary policy debates, such as the furor over former Rep. Tom Tancredo's recent claim that President Obama was elected because we lack a "civics literacy test" as a qualification for voting.
  • The 2010 Black History Month theme, the History of Black Empowerment, is relevant to contemporary efforts to achieve genuine economic recovery

A Personal Journey

When i was growing up in black working-class neighborhoods in Camden, New Jersey, and Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, I did not see people who looked like me doing the kinds of things I liked Wikimedia portrait of Sarah Vaughanto do: reading books, taking Saturday morning science classes, collecting rocks, writing poems. One day in elementary school, though, I found ASALH's Encyclopedia of Negro History on a bookcase at the Friends' Neighborhood Guild. I can still remember the delicious shock of poring over profiles of black inventors, scholars and artists.

I did not know then what I know now, that Carter G. Woodson, a child of slaves who became the second African American to earn a doctorate in history at Harvard, founded ASALH in 1915 to redress the "mis-education of the Negro" (a term that became the title of his most famous book. In addition to the encyclopedia that held me in thrall, Woodson founded two

journals that are still publishing: the Journal of African American History, found today in many university libraries, and the Black History Bulletin, targeted to middle and secondary-school teachers. 

When I flipped through Woodson's encyclopedia, I remember, especially, being transfixed by a glamorous portrait of singer Sarah Vaughan, (pictured above, left). She had skin like mine, a nose like mine and hair like mine, and she was beautiful and successful. This was heady stuff in 1966, and it opened a crack in my very limited view of what a black woman could become. (It was only later, upon further study, that I learned how colorism had kept her from appreciating her dark chocolate skin, and that her success was circumscribed by patriarchy.)

In high school, I learned of WEB DuBois and Paul Robeson, further confirming my growing belief in the power of principled scholarship and culture work. However, I was nearly 40 by the time I discovered Jessie Fauset, who had come from my home town, gone to my high school, and become the magazine editor who first published Langston Hughes, Countee Cullen and many of the other writers we now associate with the Harlem Renaissance. Despite my educational privilege I was 20 years out of journalism school before Patricia Hill Collins and David Mindich helped me understand why Ida B. Wells' exposure of Southern lynching and northern complicity had been ignored by my undergraduate history and politics professors and my graduate school journalism teachers. 

Today, when I teach my occasional class on WEB DuBois, or Race, Gender and the News, I still meet students who tell me that they've never encountered most of the American history we are studying. Others told me that while they may know some names, dates and places, they haven't been taught to think systematically about how African American or multicultural history helps to shape the nation in which they live today, regardless of their own racial or ethnic identification. A more comprehensive understanding of African American history would, I submit, substantially improve our civic discourse.

Robin Roberts Reads To Children For Black History Month

In other words, I agree with the Rev. Irene Monroe who rejected arguments against Black History Month by contending, "In order to move forward, you must look back."


Backlash and Confusion


In making this argument, let me acknowledge the anger and confusion that some people have around the rituals popularly associated with Black History Month. Womanist-Musings, for example, has been a vocal progressive critic of the way that corporations that market unhealthy products or engage in problematic labor practices use Black History Month as a marketing opportunity:

"Why should black history month be any different than any other public celebration?  That's right, commodify the shit out of it and then pretend that we seriously value it.  We certainly shouldn't be taking the time to educate children about the struggles of their ancestors through conversation, or even visit sites that are important in African Diaspora history, when we can conveniently purchase something to prove that we are culturally aware."

(A side note here - the history of the kind of cause-related marketing she's criticizing is an interesting African American history moment in and of itself. Moss Kendrix is credited with convincing corporations such as Coca-Cola to market products to black and urban markets in the 1950s and 60s. Many viewed his efforts as a step forward, because it gave black media and ad agencies access to advertising and promotional dollars that had been unavailable before. Many also also saw it as a way to break down stereotypes. When I was in corporate PR in the 1980s, I still read accounts of corporate advertisers being admonished that black consumers don't just buy cigarettes, alcohol and expensive cars. As late as 2004, broadcasting personality Tom Joyner found it necessary to campaign against a major media buying organization that labeled urban radio stations ad being full of "suspects, not prospects.")

Mural with Carter G. Woodson quote

(media credit: DB King, Flickr)

Let's also dispense with the kind of faux controversy that the musician Questlove set off when he posted a picture of the soul food menu in the NBC cafeteria. He later said he posted the picture because he thought the sign was funny, but a national discussion ensued over whether a racial offense had been committed. What's really unfortunate about the incident is that this non-story dominates the Google Blogsearch results for the term "Black History Month" when there are many substantive issues to consider.


Tom Tancredo's Toxic Brew

Former Rep. Tom Tancredo (R-CO) stirred up some of those issues this past weekend with his speech at the Tea Party convention. His speech was a call to arms against what he claimed was a decades-long drift toward socialism accelerated by President Obama:

"It seemed as though we were doomed to experience the political equivalent of the proverbial frog in the water syndrome. Every year, the liberal Democrats and RINO Republicans turned the temp up ever so slightly till it seemed we would all be boiled to death in the cauldron of the nanny state. "And then, because we don’t have a civics literacy test to vote, people who couldn’t even spell vote, or say it in English, put a committed socialist ideologue in the White House named Barack Hussein Obama. He immediately turned up the heat under that cauldron so high and so quick that people started jumping out of the water all over the place."

After critics, such as Chicago Tribune columnist Clarence Page, lambasted Tancredo for endorsing a practice that was historically used to keep African Americans from voting, Tancredo issued a statement denying any racist intent to his proposal.

Pro-democracy protest for Iran in Washington
However, as a former social studies teacher who launched his political career in 1975 when his school district introduced bilingual education, there's little doubt that he understood the incendiary history associated with these kinds of tests.


In 2004, my former student Scott Hoover created an interactive version of the Alabama literacy test that you can try out for yourself. I'm pleased to report, by the way, that Scott's work is going to be turned into an exhibit at the new International Civil Rights Museum, which opened Feb. 1 in Greensboro, North Carolina, on the site where the sit-in movement began exactly 50 years before.

I don't know what Tancredo thinks of educational projects such as Scott's or the International Civil RIghts Museum, but he's an avowed opponent of what calls the "cult of multiculturalism," a phrase he credits to blogger Michelle Malkin in one of his audio commentaries. In that commentary, he describes a purported "civil war" being waged by left-wingers intent on presenting American history in the worst possible light. He further mused on this theme in a radio interview last December, where he acknowledged the hardships endured by Native Americans and African Americans but asked:

"Now the question that we have to ask ourselves and certainly African Americans have to ask themselves is: Are they better off as a result of the fact that they came under any conditions? And it does not mean for a second–let me reiterate– it does not for a second mean that slavery was a good thing, that we should be happy about it. It is a black mark on our society and all societies that have had it since the beginning of time. Or recorded time… It doesn’t mean it is good. Is someone better off today in the United States of America as a result that they came under–or are Native Americans better off as a result that people came here from the West and created the society that we have here? Or would they have been better off if that had not happened?"


Tancredo is often dismissed as a fringe figure, but his claims about American history reflect a larger movement by some conservative academics and activists to discredit, and in some cases distort, multiculturalist scholarship. His efforts strike me as similar to those members of the Texas State Board of Education who want to revise that state's social studies standards to downplay such topics and civil rights in favor of greater emphasis on teaching about conservative leaders such as Ronald Reagan and Phyllis Schlafly.

The bottom line is that the discussion of the proper way to understand and teach American history, including the experience of African Americans, is part of the debate over the core values that will guide public policy in this country. Becoming acquainted with the credible, peer-reviewed scholarship in the field is one great way to prepare for the debate that may be coming to your school district sooner than you think.


Sarah Vaughan portrait from Wikimedia Commons

ASALH posters from ASALH

Robin Roberts and Tom Tancredo images from Picapp.com

BlogHer Contributing Editor|KimPearson.net|

          Why European Court Ordered Devastated Parents MUST Take Baby Off Life Support   
Photo: BBC
Sad Details Of European Court Ruling That Parents MUST Take Baby Off Life Support Rather Than Receive Treatment In The U.S.

Despite their raising $1.5 on GoFundMe for their infant son Charlie Gard to receive treatment for his rare genetic condition in the U.S., Connie Yates and Chris Gard received news that the European Court of Human Rights will not intervene in their fight to prevent the doctors at Great Ormond Street Hospital from removing their baby's child support. Here are the most critical details, from Charlie's condition, to the proposed treatment and prior court decisions in the case.

Keywords: court case, death, family, grief, loss, news, parenting, infant, loss of a child

read more

          Re: I am a Mautner   
I have not been working on my family tree for some time and thought
I would give a reply. My Great Great Grandfather was born in 1840
July 24 in Szigetvar, Baranya, Hungary We know his Fathers Name was Salomon but do not know any other information about siblings.
He Married Beatrice Elvire Castle 5 Nov 1874. He was a Doctor\ and had studied in Vienna. my e mail bmautner@earthlink.net
          Re: Mautner Family Tree   
My Great Great Grandfather was Rudolph, born 1940 in
Szigetvar, Hungary. Studied in Vienna to become a doctor.
We do not know anything about his parents or siblings came to USA in 1870's lived in Bronix NY
          Re: Mautner Family Tree   
My Great Great Grandfather was Rudolph, born 1940 in
Szigetvar, Hungary. Studied in Vienna to become a doctor.
We do not know anything about his parents or siblings came to USA in 1870's lived in Bronix NY
          I am a Mautner   
My Father was born in NY his father was Henry
and his Father was Rudolph, a Doctor.
I have been working on My Family Tree for a few years.
My Great Grandfather was born in Szigetor
Hungary in 1840, died Staten Island NY
August 7,1887
          Comment on Groups advocate for future of homeless youth; a look at the numbers by Mike   
The (Federal) McKinney-Vento Education of the Homeless Act "requires" each school district to report numbers for the following "specific" categories: Sharing a residence with one or more families due to loss of housing or economic hardship, living in a hotel/motel, living in a shelter (domestic violence, emergency, or transitional housing units), living in a place without adequate facilities (running water, heat, electricity), or seeking enrollment without an accompanying parent. The WCSD is compliant with the law. This school year we had 1,021 doubled up, and 142 in the other categories combined. We had 94 students who were unaccompanied. Of those 94 students, 30 dropped out or moved out of our district. That is our most "alarming" statistic. Where did they go? These sites will provide some history and facts about the McKinney-Vento law: http://nche.ed.gov/downloads/ehcy_profile.pdf http://nche.ed.gov/legis/mv.php Our largest category (Living with one or more families) is consistent with the numbers throughout the country. In fact, this category accounts for 88.7% of our total homeless population within the Washington County School District. I believe this number will continue to grow because of the few options for affordable housing and the lower wage jobs available in our county. According to the commercial real estate firm NAI Excel, vacancy for multifamily housing in St. George currently stands at less than 0.1%. In 2010, monthly rent for a two bedroom, two bath apartment was $690, which has risen to an average of $848 today. This forces even "working" families to share residences and rent with one another. In my experience over the past 3 years as the homeless liaison, I have witnessed students and their families go in and out of homelessness several times during the year. That is why a student who is homeless even one day is entitled to the benefits and rights under the McKinney-Vento Law. The whole reason for the law was to take away the barriers for students living in homelessness to be able to attend school on a regular basis and be successful. They also are eligible to have an advocate (the homeless liaison) to help with the student's basic needs, birth certificates, immunizations, fee waivers, free breakfast and lunch, school supplies, clothing, and in some cases transportation to school. I invite anyone out there to visit the agencies and organizations that are dealing with the homeless population and families living in poverty on a daily basis and hear what they have to tell you, i.e. the DOVE Center, Switchpoint Community Resource Center, Department of Workforce Services, Southwest Behavioral Health Center, Doctors Volunteer Clinic, Family Healthcare Clinic, Southwest Utah Public Health Department, St. George Housing Authority, Five County Association of Government, Department of Child & Family Services, St. George Police Department, all local police departments, Washington County Sheriff's & Attorney's Departments, Children's Justice Center, St. George Catholic Thrift Store, Deseret Industries, the Family Support Center, The Learning Center for Families, Salvation Army, Utah Food Bank, Grace Episcopal Church, Solomon Porch, Utah Foster Care Foundation, System of Care, Washington County Youth Crisis Center, TEAM RAW, Southwest Adult High School, Big Brothers Big Sisters, SUU Headstart, Paiute Indian Tribe, Vocational Rehabilitation, Intermountain Healthcare, the Interfaith Council, any church leader, Dixie State University, the United Effort Plan Trust (in Hildale), Cherish Families, etc. etc. etc. many, more. The Washington County School District alone has close to 45 schools with faculty, staff, administrators, and counselors that can "personally" tell you stories of their students living in poverty or homeless conditions. Live in our world for a day and you will realize we are not lying about the desperate needs for our homeless youth. We just realize that we (alone) CANNOT give them what they need. It is going to take as many people and groups of people to make things better. The great thing about America is that you have the right to criticize and complain or get involved, OR do nothing? It is up to you what you decide to do. :)
          Congresscritters Aren't Like The Rest Of Us   
This last few weeks, we've heard a lot about research conducted by Ziobrowski et. al. (see here and here) on the possibility of informed trading by Senators and Congressmen. Based on abnormal returns earned on their portfolios, it appears that they do use their "inside information" in ways that would be illegal for those not in government service. In case you haven't seen it, here's the 60 Minutes story that brought Ziobrowski's research into the public eye:

Now here's another fun fact - Congresscritters not only get to profit from material nonpublic information, they also get to reveal it to select parties too. It seems like a number of hedge funds regularly meet with members of congress to get fast track access to this information. Here's a video from the Wall Street Journal for your viewing pleasure.

And here I though our elected officials were pure of heart and above approach (sorry - I think I shouldn't have changed my meds without doctor's orders).

          Comment on Tattoo Secret Travel Bag by Emily   
*Hi this is not a review*. I am thinking of getting this product for my self harm scars from last year. They are a pinky red and some are slightly raised. I am going on holiday this summer and my family and doctor think it would be good to get some proper coverup. Can you either reply to me on this or by email. Thanks :)
          Doctor: Insurance Wouldn’t Pay for Patients’ Treatments, But Offered Assisted Suicide   

Dr. Brian Callister, a doctor in Reno, Nevada, says he had two patients recently who both needed life-saving treatments. “Not palliative care, not hospice, these... Read More

The post Doctor: Insurance Wouldn’t Pay for Patients’ Treatments, But Offered Assisted Suicide appeared first on The Daily Signal.

          Doctor Fucked Wife In Front Of Her Paralyzed Husband   
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          Japanese Doctor and Nurse taking Sperm Sample From patient In Coma Uncensored   
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          Nerdy Coed Teen CFNM Blowjob To School Doctor   
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          After He Sent Off His Pregnant Wife To A Doctor Guy Jumps On His Hot Maid In A Kitchen   
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          Real Nurse Fucked By A Doctor In His Office   
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          La Peer Welcomes Two New Gastroenterologists   

La Peer Health Systems in Los Angeles, California is proud to welcome two new doctors to its team of medical experts.

(PRWeb July 30, 2014)

Read the full story at http://www.prweb.com/releases/2014/07/prweb12053349.htm

          Los Angeles Doctor Launches Brand New Website for Colorectal Surgery and Treatment   

Allen Kamrava, M.D., a Board-certified colorectal surgeon in Los Angeles, has launched a website devoted to the treatment of colon cancer, hemorrhoids, and other colorectal conditions.

(PRWeb July 22, 2014)

Read the full story at http://www.prweb.com/releases/2014/07/prweb12035078.htm

          Dr. David Parks Honored as Top Doctor by Castle Connolly for 11th Straight Year   

Beverly Hills retinal ophthalmologist, David J. Parks, MD has been named a top doctor for his outstanding work in the field of ophthalmology.

(PRWeb May 23, 2014)

Read the full story at http://www.prweb.com/releases/2014/05/prweb11879252.htm

          전 마십시오 연 50 가장 영향력있는 여성입니다   

연락을 한 석 - 규 반대 그녀의 영화 데뷔와 인스턴트 스타 상태를 달성하기 전에 텔레비전 드라마에 출연하는 5 년 동안 전 마십시오 연 (B를 1973년 2월 11일). 그녀는 아내의에 내 기억에 하모늄에서 여학생의 가장 히트 멜로 드라마 약속 의사로서 그녀의 공연에서 역할의 다양한에 걸릴 수있는 "카멜레온"로서 명성을 확립에 갔다 해피 엔딩의 간통의 바람을 피우고. 1999 2000 년 그녀는 모두 블루 드래곤과 내 기억에 하모늄 그녀의 역할에 대한 그랜드 벨 시상식에서 최우수 여우 주연 상을 받았습니다.
2001 년 그녀는 아주 능숙하게 내가 후회 공원 신흥 초식의 데뷔에 아주 평범한 은행원을 재생할 아내. 피도 눈물의 Ryoo 승 완에서 가장 힘든 - 말하는 "선글라스"로 출연 후, 전라는 TV 드라마에서 연기 시간을 보냈다 "등급에 쏴." 2003 년 그녀는 유명한 프랑스 소설 위험한 Liasions을 기반으로, 전자 제이 용인의 스캔들 - 조선 남녀 상열에서 흥행 성공을 발견. 그녀는 다시 시간 절곡 멜로 드라마 내 어머니, 인어 공주에 대한 이중 역할에 이사 공원 신흥 초식 유나이티드 다음해.
당신은 나의 선샤인라고 박 진 - 이영표의 충격적인 멜로 드라마에서 에이즈 계약 매춘부를 연주 각광으로 2005 전 버스트 다시합니다. 성능과, (3 만 개 이상의 입학)의 박스 오피스 히트에 필름을 돌려 도움이 지방 연기 상을 그녀의 컬렉션에 그녀에게 아직 더 첨가을 받았다.
광범위하게 국제 비평가의 평가를 다양한 evoked 깐느에 데뷔 영화 자체가,,, 전 실적은 보편적으로 칭찬했지만, 그리고 실제로 그녀는 칸느 영화제 심사 위원에 의해 최우수 여우 주연 상을 수여되었습니다 - 적에 연기 상을받을 한국 첫번째 칸느.
아니라 널리 다른 별과 같이 관객에게 인기 있지만, 전 널리, 그리고 그녀의 행동 능력에 대한 존경 많은 젊은 배우들이 역할 모델로 그녀를 인용.
인터뷰 발췌 :
"나는 훌륭한 거래를 연기 즐기는, 그래서 필요 또는 욕망 훌륭한 배우라는 것으로 생각합니다. 이것은 부분적으로 나의 성격뿐만 아니라, 내가 볼 수있게하거나 생각하는 내가 정말 연기에 흡수는 사실입니다 다른 건.하지만, 좋은 연기가 무엇을 말할 수 없어요 날 위해 자네가 정직, 성실과 끈기로하는 모든 것들을 제공하는 것입니다.
Korean actress Jeon Do-yeon
하지만 그녀가 모든 영광을 입고 뽐내는 볼 것이 2007 년 리 창동역의 비밀 선샤인 그녀의 역할을했다.
          Dr. David Savar Awarded Top Doctor Recognition by Castle Connolly   

Los Angeles oculoplastic surgeon, David Savar, MD of La Peer Health Systems honored for extraordinary work in the field of ophthalmology.

(PRWeb May 13, 2014)

Read the full story at http://www.prweb.com/releases/2014/05/prweb11845568.htm

          Doctors Head Extensive Six-Day Medical Mission in Guatemala to Treat Underserved Community   

Dr. Babak Larian of the CENTER for Advanced Head & Neck Surgery in Beverly Hills announces May 16 trip to Guatemala with a team of expert surgeons.

(PRWeb May 12, 2014)

Read the full story at http://www.prweb.com/releases/2014/05/prweb11846684.htm

          La Peer Orthopedic Surgeon Named Top Doctor by Castle Connolly   

Eric S. Millstein, Los Angeles Orthopedic Surgeon at La Peer Health Systems, has been commemorated for excellent work and patient care.

(PRWeb May 12, 2014)

Read the full story at http://www.prweb.com/releases/2014/05/prweb11839082.htm

          Doctor Must Find A Way To Calm Down Nympho Patient With Pussy In Fire   
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          Hot Brunette Visit A Doctor   
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          Office Assistant - The Drugless Doctors - Westlake, OH   
We are looking for an energetic, friendly, outgoing, motivated, health conscious individual that is a quick thinker, takes initiative, and promptly problem...
From Indeed - Sun, 25 Jun 2017 18:15:19 GMT - View all Westlake, OH jobs
          Young Married Couple Ask Wrong Doctor For Help   
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          What will he have to say for himself?   
The Telegraph is giving readers the opportunity to pose questions to David Cameron, leader of the Conservative party. Reading through the questions posted so far, there seems to be a pretty common theme: immigration, EU and crime.

After gaining some good momentum while Blur ran the country into the ground, Cameron has lost it all and is allowing Brown to take the upper hand. There seems to be a genuine fear in the Tory ranks of "lurching to the Right", which is complete nonsense. The simple fact is that the UK's resources in all areas are stretched way beyond capacity, and a firm line must be taken. Brown produces the rhetoric and is lauded for it, Cameron does it and is accused of being Right wing (as if it is a crime). It's something Nick Robinson of the BBC has also observed.

In my opinion, Cameron has to stop being Blur-lite and make some definitive policy statements on some of the harder issues to tackle. At least that way, people can either get on board or jump ship. The lack of anything of substance is going to be damaging as nobody will not what he or the Tories stand for. The incumbent government have many areas where they are prime for attacking: violent crime is rising, unions seem to be getting their edge back (a new winter of discontent?) and the Health service is failing with more administrators than there is capacity to treat patients. Sadly, Cameron and the Tories are failing to voice these - they must do if they want to be a credible opposition.
          Tomboy, A Revenger's Tale of Forced Feminization   
A forced feminized hit man.
(Photo from movie set)

Controversial move this one, but Michelle Rodriguez is to play a hit man that is put under the knife by Sigourney Weaver (who plays the doctor) and turned into a woman.

The Hollywood Reporter writes:

"The script, written by Hill from a story by Denis Hamill, centers on an ace assassin who is double-crossed by gangsters and falls into the hands of rogue surgeon known as "The Doctor," who turns him into a woman. The hitman (now a hitwoman) sets out for revenge, aided by a nurse named Johnnie, who also has secrets."

The movie is expected in theatres next year.

(Someone has to tell them that a tomboy is female expressing masculine behavior, and not the other way around)
          Implanted a bionic arm to a FOP patient   

Actually Ashley , now 31, suffers from a rare genetic disease called fibrodysplasia ossificans progressiva ( FOP ) . This disease is known as the " stone man syndrome " , as the muscles , tendons and ligaments of sufferers are being developed into bone.

Doctors in the Denver Clinic for Extremities at Risk have been built to Kurpiel a prosthetic arm that connects to your torso. A small sensors myoelectric prosthetic arm in detecting small electrical charges that are created when Kurpiel moves a muscle. Some small motors and batteries make the prosthesis meets those contractions , giving mobility.

Kurpiel is just one of the 800 confirmed cases of FOP worldwide , according to the International Fibrodysplasia Ossificans Progressiva Association ( IFOPA ) . The disease affects men and women equally, usually appears in childhood and those who suffer gradually lose control of the majority of its members.

Ashley is adapting quickly to his new prosthetic arm that allows you to hold a glass , handle phone and eating.

          The crisis increases the number of vasectomies   

The researchers interviewed nearly 1,700 men who had consulted their doctor about vasectomy clinic in Wisconsin between 2005 and 2012 . About 1450 men conducted vasectomy.

The results showed an increase in the rate of vasectomies performed each year , coinciding with the start of the economic crisis of 2007 . The growing trend of vasectomy appeared to stabilize at the end of 2012 , according to the study presented October 15 at the meeting of the American Society for Reproductive Medicine .

The increase in the number of vasectomies is a reflection of the decrease in revenue , which can be considered a measure of economic health , according to Dr. Anand Shridharani , urologist and member of the research team .

"I think the economy plays an important role in preventing unwanted births due to the financial burden of having a child ," said Shridharani .

Image By Rhcastilhos (Own work) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

          Preventing smoking and lung cancer mortality   

Regarding tumors, in particular lung and bronchial cancer is the leading cause of death in Spain beating breast cancer and colon together. The main risk factor for lung and bronchus cancer is smoking , responsible according to studies 71% of deaths from respiratory diseases affecting both active and passive smoking .

In order to help stem the alarming numbers of deaths due to lung cancer and improve the life expectancy of those affected , the Spanish Society of Pneumology and Thoracic Surgery ( separ ) and the Spanish Association Against Cancer ( AECC ) signed last week a collaboration agreement for the purpose of working together in the prevention , treatment and social awareness about smoking and lung cancer .

" Of concern is the increase in mortality due to lung cancer , in only twenty years has gone global occupy the eighth position among the causes of death in 1990 to fifth current " explains Dr. Pilar de Lucas , president of separ , "so it is essential that organizations are already doing important work like our join efforts and work cooperatively to have a greater impact . " Meanwhile Ms. Isabel Oriol , president of the aECC , explained during the ceremony agreement signing "with this agreement we unite our smoking prevention programs and care for people diagnosed with cancer to strengthen and complement our strengths . The AECC can bring their widespread deployment separ social while we provide care and scientific expertise . "

Among the activities that through this agreement want to carry out the two entities is the collaboration in the prevention and treatment of smoking . Separ collaborate in smoking cessation programs that aecc made through their offices and also to be attended by doctors and specialists separ smoking in order to complement the training and to expand the supply of specialized therapies to the population . It also provides for collaboration on awareness and prevention activities aimed at one of the most sensitive groups such as adolescents , sharing programs , publicity materials and other initiatives to prevent the consumption of snuff . Finally , separ shall provide all the information the AECC on Smoking Units specialized and accredited by separ .

With regard to lung cancer , one of the objectives is to share resources , programs and services available to the AECC through its network of 52 branches located in almost all Spanish provinces , particularly for patients of pulmonologists and surgeons thoracic who need to benefit from the program of comprehensive care to the person newly diagnosed with cancer , patients who are at a particularly vulnerable and often need special attention. Meanwhile, professionals separ respiratory diseases , and separ through their executive bodies , provide scientific advice in lung cancer and smoking to the AECC .

Nota prensa AECC: https://www.aecc.es/Comunicacion/NotasdePrensa/Documents/2013/NP_Convenio_aecc_SEPAR.pdf

          About the shortage of varicella vaccine in pharmacies   

For this reason has issued the following statement to reproduce , for distribution , entirely :

" The scientific societies more closely linked to the use of vaccines express our surprise and concern at the shortage of chickenpox vaccine that is occurring in many Spanish pharmacies .

Registered in Spain are two vaccines for chickenpox . One of these vaccines ( Varilrix ® ) is restricted to hospital use , so in our view unjustified , especially after the recent change in its data sheet . The other vaccine ( Varivax ® ) was available until recently in the pharmacy .

For the moment , we have no official knowledge , ie , by the Ministry of Health or the Spanish Agency of Medicines and Health Products (Competent Authority ) of any circumstances that explain this shortage, as it could be a possible problem of production, distribution or security .

The shortage is occurring in most of the regions , but not all . The manufacturer of Varivax ® laboratory reports that have lots of vaccine available, but they are retained. We hope that the Ministry of Health and the Competent Authority as soon as possible to manifest and especially you can put an end to this anomalous and strange situation .

Vaccination against chickenpox in early childhood , ie , from 12 months old, has proven beneficial in numerous studies and countries with universal vaccination , as the United States , Canada, Australia , Uruguay , as well as European countries such as Germany , Greece , Latvia and some Italian regions . In other European countries , the vaccine is available in the pharmacy for prescription free .

In Spain , only two regions (Madrid and Navarra ) and two autonomous cities ( Ceuta and Melilla) vaccinated free of charge to children in the second year of life . The effectiveness data reported by the communities of Madrid and Navarre , where it is established universal vaccination since 2006 and 2007 respectively , are spectacular. In other communities vaccine from age 12, age at which 90 % of children have already had chickenpox naturally ( up to 15 % of cases with any complications ) or have been vaccinated CAV following the recommendations of the ASP. With this shortage in communities without vaccination funded , are deprived of the use of this product and its proven health benefits to those who decide to use following recommended by their doctors. "

Vaccine Advisory Committee of the Spanish Association of Pediatrics ( AEP ) , Spanish Association of Vaccinology ( AEV ) , Spanish Society of Preventive Medicine , Public Health and Hygiene ( SEMPSPH )

Meanwhile the Spanish Agency of Medicines and Health Products ( Competent Authority) ensures that :

"... the vaccine supply is adequate to the needs arising from compliance with vaccination schedules on which there is agreement of the Inter-territorial Council of Health.

According to the information of this agency , this provision extends to the responsible authorities in the vaccination plans and pharmacies territorial units in which public health authorities have decided , on your calendar , vaccinate children in early childhood , thus fulfilling the provisions of the Inter-Territorial Council agreement . "

Finally say that the Competent Authority says that yesterday we released a lot of that vaccine.

          Vitamin D what is for and what is not for   

This situation is radically different if you live in an area with little sun or you move or just live in northern or central Europe , in this case , many doctors and nutritionists recommend supplementation with vitamin D , as its deficiency has been associated with various diseases. That if one thing does not make vitamin D , according to a study published in JAMA Internal Medicine , and reduce blood pressure .

Participants in this study were over 70 years old and suffering from high blood pressure. After taking vitamin D supplements at high doses or placebo every three months for one year , it was found that vitamin D supplementation did not improve blood pressure.

Anyway there are plenty of reasons to control our levels of vitamin D and if necessary take a supplement :

Preventing Osteoporosis : Postmenopausal women who took a vitamin D supplement for three years had a significant reduction in vertebral fractures in the second and third year of supplementation , according to a 1992 study published in the New England Journal of Medicine .

Stimulation of immunity: Children taking a greater amount of vitamin D3 fortified milk through were about half as likely to catch a cold , compared with children not supplemented with this vitamin , according to a 2012 study published in the Pediatrics.

Reduced risk of breast cancer: Have blood levels of vitamin D levels may predict an increased risk of breast cancer before menopause , according to a study published in February in the journal " Cancer Causes and Control" . The researchers studied 1,200 women and found that those who had lower levels of vitamin D were three times more likely to develop cancer of mamaque those with higher levels .

Prevention of Alzheimer's disease : Vitamin D linked to DHA can help to control inflammation and improve the space between the plates often associated with Alzheimer's disease , according to a study of cells grown in the laboratory dishes , which was published in the Journal of Alzheimer 's Disease .

          GALVÁN: Instan SNS enviar personal médico hospital   
Omar Medina
GALVÁN, 27 jun 2017.- Residentes en el sector La Piedra marcharon este martes por numerosas calles en reclamo a que el director del Servicio Nacional de Salud (SNS), doctor Nelson Rodríguez Monegro, incremente el personal médico en el Centro de Diagnostico y Referencia, de aquí.
Reclamaron por el incremento de los medicamentos, ya que los que llegan allí no son suficientes para la demanda de la comunidad; además de dotar a este centro de una ambulancia, porque la comunidad carece de este imprescindible servicio desde tiempos atrás.
La caminata fue liderada por el dirigente comunitario, Aquino Féliz, luego la muchedumbre con pancartas se congregó en las afueras del citado centro médico, donde solicitaron al Gobierno cumplir con su pliego de demandas.
El recorrido inició a las 9: 00 de la mañana por distintas calles, luego terminó frente al hospital, ubicado en la calle José del Carmen Oviedo del susodicho sector.

          La UCSD realizó charla sobre “Rol del contador y el auditor de cara a la reforma de la Ley 72-02 sobre lavado de activos”   

Somos uno de los países que mayor número de sentencias por lavado de activos tenemos. Poseemos un muy buen sistema financiero realizando la Debida Diligencia al Cliente y realizando los correspondientes reportes que establece la Ley.``Pues creo mucho en mi país, no todo está bien, creo que hemos avanzado, que nos falta fortalecernos institucionalmente, que debe haber un sistema de consecuencias para cuando alguien se equivoque reciba la sanción que corresponde. Que no es posible que un país tan pequeño ocurra cosas tan grandes. Debemos volver a los valores, al respeto por la casa ajena, a formar familias, hijos que sientan orgullo de sus padres y que aprendan de ellos valores, respeto, trabajo, dignidad, integridad, amor a Dios, en fin volver a nuestros orígenes``, informó Dulce María Luciano, Procuradora General de Corte de Apelación. 

SANTO DOMINGO 2017 La Universidad Católica Santo Domingo realizó una importante charla sobre “Rol del contador y el auditor de cara a la reforma de la Ley 72-02 sobre lavado de activos”, la cual en lo adelante, será denominada Ley 155-17 Contra el Lavado de Activos y Financiamiento al Terrorismo, al ser promulgada la nueva ley por el Presidente de la República Dominicana, el pasado Jueves 01 de Junio y, luego de ser aprobada por el Congreso Nacional, donde fue sometida el pasado 09 de febrero, como proyecto de modificación de la Ley 72-02 sobre Lavado de Activos.

Dulce María Luciano, Procuradora General de Corte de Apelación informó que el Lavado de Activo en la Republica Dominicana fue evaluado en el 2016, por el Grupo de Acción Financiera (GAFIC), organismo al estilo GAFI, que perteneció la República Dominicana Hasta diciembre 2016, cuando pasamos a ser miembros de GAFILAT, enviamos 14 informes de avance del país.

``Somos uno de los países que mayor número de sentencias por lavado de activos tenemos. Tenemos un muy buen sistema financiero realizando la Debida Diligencia al Cliente y realizando los correspondientes reportes que establece la Ley, en cuanto a los Sujetos obligados del sector No financiero estamos trabajando en su capacitación y ayudándolos para que tengan sus programas de cumplimiento y lo ejecuten. Hemos actualizado la normativa anti lavado y contra el Financiamiento al Terrorismo, para cumplir con las 40 Recomendaciones de GAFI y hemos ratificado todos los convenio que tienen que ver con el tema``, puntualizó la magistrada.

La Procuradora General de Corte de Apelación entiende que con la promulgación de la Ley 155-17 del 1 de junio 2017, Contra el Lavado de Activos y Financiamiento al Terrorismo, se ha actualizado las normativas, adecuándola a las 40 recomendaciones de GAFI, y las Resoluciones del Consejo de Seguridad de Naciones Unidas, específicamente las 1267 y 1373 y sus sucesoras, así como los convenios que ha ratificado el país, que son el estándar internacional en la materia.

``Pues creo mucho en mi país, no todo está bien, creo que hemos avanzado, que nos falta fortalecernos institucionalmente, que debe haber un sistema de consecuencias para cuando alguien se equivoque reciba la sanción que corresponde. Que no es posible que un país tan pequeño ocurra cosas tan grandes. Debemos volver a los valores, al respeto por la casa ajena, a formar familias hijos que sientan orgullo de sus padres y que aprendan de ellos valores, respeto, trabajo, dignidad, integridad, amor a Dios, en fin volver a nuestros orígenes``, expresó Dulce María Luciano.

La nueva legislación constituye un gran avance al incorporar los actuales estándares internacionales en la lucha contra el lavado de activos y el financiamiento al terrorismo, según las recomendaciones del Grupo Acción Financiera Internacional (GAFI), de los convenios internacionales firmados por la República Dominicana y de las resoluciones de la Organización de las Naciones Unidas. Además, plantea puntos de reforma que incluyen el trabajo de las profesiones especializadas, por lo que implica a los profesionales de la Contabilidad Pública, quienes tienen la responsabilidad de llevar los registros económicos de las empresas , para que jueguen el rol que les corresponde y les confiere la referida Ley, al igual que a otros especialistas del área.

La actividad es organizada por la Licenciada Yolis Madera, Directora de la Escuela de Administración de Empresas, el Licenciado Rafael Moreno quien dirige la Escuela de Contabilidad y la Licenciada Glendys Jiménez Muñoz, quien es docente de dichas escuelas, y tuvo como expositora a la Doctora Dulce María Luciano, Procuradora General de Corte de Apelación, este evento se llevó a cabo en el Salón Oval de la Biblioteca de esta alta casa de estudios, contó con la participación de profesores y estudiantes del área de administración de empresas y contabilidad.

Esta conferencia es una de las iniciativas de la Institución universitaria en aras de la formación de profesionales de alto nivel, conscientes de su responsabilidad ante las diversas leyes y regulaciones establecidas en nuestra sociedad.

          How can hurt you technological devices   

Some of these lesions appear suddenly, while others occur as a result of repetitive tasks and take some time to develop.

Researchers have published in medical journals, injury cases related to technology and even invent names for these newly discovered diseases, some of them very creative.

BlackBerry Thumb and hand iPad

When performing repetitive hand movements, such as rolling the ball of the BlackBerry or sweep the screen of an iPad for a long time, we can gradually damage our muscles, tendons and nerves. These painful lesions are known as repetitive strain injury (RSI).

One of the most severe types of RSI is carpal tunnel syndrome, in which there is too much pressure on a nerve in the wrist. The symptoms are pain, numbness and muscle pain in the hand and fingers.

Trigger finger is another condition LER, where the tendons become inflamed and fingers get stuck in bent position.

Tinnitus (tinnitus)

A study in Austria showed that people who used cell phones for an average of 10 minutes a day were 71 percent more likely to develop tinnitus than the rest.

The study also found that those who had been using a cell phone for four or more years doubled the risk of chronic beep ears compared to the control group.

For PlayStation palmar hidradenitis

This skin condition is caused by newly identified using the controls on the playstation too long.

The "for PlayStation palmar hidradenitis", or rash PlayStation was first diagnosed in a 12-year-old in Switzerland to attend a Swiss hospital with irritation on the palms of the hands that caused him intense pain, doctors found that before the appearance of lesions, the girl had been playing PlayStation for several hours a day.

Wii have a problem: Nintendinitis and Wiiitis

With the Nintendo console, the player simulates actual movements such as tennis, golf or béisbool, thanks to a control that fits the hand. The problem is that the repetitive motion, sometimes intense, especially in persons unaccustomed to actual physical activity is causing injuries to shoulders, elbows and wrists.

The "Wiiitis" is the latest ailment was generated by video games, which began with the wrist injury by playing "Space Invaders" in 1981, caused by pressing the control button repeatedly.

Death quiet

Headphones may be one of the few remaining refuges to escape the noise that surrounds us today, but carefully, can cause accidents. Studies show that the number of accidents involving pedestrians wearing headphones is growing.

Most of the victims are men under 30 years. More than half of the accidents are caused by trains, and about a third of the vehicles honked his horn before the accident.

          Jogging 30 minutes a day reduces the risk erectile dysfunction   

Physical exercise improves the cardiovascular system, which benefits the mechanism ereccPracticar half hour of aerobic sports like running, reduces the risk of erectile dysfunction. According to experts at Boston Medical Group, a global alliance in medical clinics dedicated to the treatment of male sexual dysfunction, physical exercise is always a recommended activity as it facilitates good condition and functioning of the cardiovascular system and decreases the chance of developing a problem male sexual function.

Although exercise and all sports in general are beneficial to health altmante, Jose Benitez, Medical Director of Boston Medical Group, said: "The erection of the male organ is achieved through a vascular response. Therefore sports aerobic such as running, swimming or walking prevent erectile dysfunction because they are more complete and specific exercises for the circulatory system to the anaerobic, like gymnastics ".

In addition to the benefits of sport, Dr. Benitez noted that "men who have sex 3 or more times a week are 4 times less likely to develop a condition of erectile dysfunction." Not forgetting that tner a healthy sex life and full carries many benefits for the body, since sex accelerates the heart rate of a healthy and improves the general condition of the arteries.

A properly functioning cardiovascular system increases blood flow which is an improvement in the mechanism of erection and sexual function. As explained by Dr. Benitez, "penile erection is the response to a stimulus caused by blood circulation and flow phenomena. Consequently, if the bloodstream has a good performance in the penile arteries, the response to the stimulus also the erection is rewarded, resulting satisfactaria sexual function. "

Poor diet, some unhealthy habits and sedentary lifestyle contribute to the deterioration of the circulatory system, so that these habits are not recommended for general health, for good fitness of the body and to maintain a healthy sex life. The medical director of Boston Medical Group, says that those men with erectile dysfunction should be aware of the fact dysfunction penile rigidity may be a predisposing factor for diseases such as diabetes, hypertension or circulatory problems, so it is essential to go the doctor or specialist to treat the problem and prevent the possible consequences. "

Fotografía By ms4denmark [CC-BY-SA-2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

          Press GEPAC to the therapeutic equivalence   

As a non-profit organization that defends the interests of cancer patients, support the statements of the Medical College (OMC), the Federation of Medical Scientific Spanish (FACME), Spanish Society of Medical Oncology (SEOM) and other and broadcasting organizations that:

Cancer patients consider it essential that access to cancer drugs is the same for patients in all the Autonomous Communities. All that goes against equality, against the principle of equality set out in the Health Act.

As patients and active users of cancer treatments health authorities requested that in any case, are the professionals that serve those who decide what treatment is best for us. We are concerned that this decision rests with a health manager and not the doctors, because we understand that they are not trained to do so and in their economic decisions take precedence over scientific criteria.

Establish therapeutic equivalence would reduce the range of treatment options for the same indication regardless as patients who have specific and particular characteristics and can tolerate a molecule to another. Typically, and depending on each individual, is the professional who proposes the options available, directing the choice for the best possible quality of life, reduced toxicity and minimal side effects. The therapeutic equivalence could pose a limit for that choice, clearly impacting our quality of life.

Cancer patients are aware that the current economic crisis requires measures to ensure the sustainability of the National Health System in time. While we believe that such proposals involve not only effective saving solution medium - long term, but also generate social perception guarantees breaking the system.

We believe that innovation in oncology is perfectly compatible with the rationalization of health expenditure, and as patients are willing to share our experience, concerns, needs and concerns and establish an open dialogue to reach consensus saving measures.

Also, we want to transfer to the health authorities, both regional and national, our absolute rejection to approach that is raised by these proposals and measures that make us feel like a plague patients for State Budget. Here we report that:
We have chosen to have cancer, so we asked to stop economically and socially penalize us for it.

We pay our taxes, so we are entitled to receive medical care we need.
According to a study by the Spanish Society of Medical Oncology (SEOM) that have not been made public but we know the data [1] through its President, Dr. Juan Jesús Cruz oncology represents 4.8% of health expenditure and pharmaceutical expenditure within, only 6.6% of the total corresponds to cancer drugs, so we demand you stop pointing to cancer patients as a cause of the collapse of health spending.

Just as we express our concern at the proposal to establish therapeutic equivalents, we reiterate our desire to be part of the decisions on this and other initiatives that directly affect us and in which to date has not received our opinion. Professionals are not only non-profit institutions, but as patients we are, we know first hand the reality of cancer patients.

Spanish Group of Patients with Cancer (GEPAC


Picture  By ernes ([1]) [see page for license], via Wikimedia Commons

          Health Benefits of Tai Chi   

The T'ai chi is very popular in China, where massively practiced daily in parks and open spaces. Some call it moving mediation. The T'ai chi is also practiced worldwide and involves no risk in people of any age.

Both Chinese and doctors worldwide have documented numerous health benefits of t'ai chi, including improvements in balance, flexibility, endurance, blood pressure, overall heart health, mental health and symptoms associated with stroke, fibromyalgia, Parkinson's disease or Alzheimer's.

How does t'ai chi?

The T'ai chi, physically, is series of slow, deliberate and carefully orchestrated, learned from an experienced instructor. The movements focus on precise movement, breathing and consciousness. Today, tai chi is typically practiced for its health benefits. His character slow and low impact makes this an ideal exercise for elderly, sick or disabled.

At a very basic level, the t'ai chi may consist of four movements that incorporate a slight crouch, slight twist, moving the arms forward and up and over the head and legs moving side to side. Although simple, deliberate movements appear to increase muscle strength and concentration if done correctly.

Health Benefits of Tai Chi

Most Western scientific studies have focused on the element of tai chi chuan exercise. And the health benefits are numerous, while in the U.S. many hospitals taught t'ai chi classes for their patients.

Independent studies published in April 2013 in the journal PLoS ONE found that tai chi improves arthritis symptoms and physical function in patients with osteoarthritis, and tai chi improves respiration and endurance of patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease ( COPD).

In 2010 in the New England Journal of Medicine, was published that tai chi is a useful treatment for fibromyalgia, a neurological disorder characterized by widespread muscle pain and fatigue.

Regular practice of Tai Chi improves psychological well-being including reduction of stress, anxiety, depression and mood disorder and an increase in self-esteem.


Photo By Peter Harrison from Auckland, New Zealand (Tai Chi Young and Old) [CC-BY-2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

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          Today is the World Day of hypertension   

In Europe, less than 50% of patients on antihypertensive treatment is able to reduce their blood pressure levels below 140/90 mmHg and it is estimated that more than half of untreated hypertensives. 3.4 "To meet this challenge, the European Society of Hypertension (ESH by the acronym) has set a target that 70% of hypertensive patients achieve control of their blood pressure levels by 2015", said Professor Josep Redon, President of the ESH, adding: "Some European countries, such as Italy and France, have already committed to this initiative and soon we will meet with hypertension companies from other European countries to ensure support for the time to realize this common goal. "

To help physicians and patients achieve blood pressure targets and, thus, reduce the risk of developing serious cardiovascular events, Daiichi Sankyo continues to investigate the benefits of fixed-dose combination of olmesartan and amlodipine and developing solutions that involving health professionals and patients as part of their initiative HypertensionCare.

In this sense, soon will present new clinical data from phase 4 Sevitension study, comparing fixed-dose combination of olmesartan and amlodipine versus perindopril and amlodipine in reducing central blood pressure aórtica.5

It is estimated that between 80 and 85% of hypertensive patients may achieve blood pressure control with combinations of several fármacos.6 fixed dose combinations, which are the preferred treatment option according to the European Guidelines for management clinical simplify antihypertensive treatment, improve patient adherence and outcomes clínicos.6

Optimizing the management of hypertension will also be the focus of the satellite symposium "Ten years of olmesartan" that Daiichi Sankyo and Menarini organized within the next 23 th Congress of the European Society of Hypertension (ESH by the acronym) and will take place Milan (Italy) on June 14 from 15.00 to 17.00 hours.


 "In addition to our ongoing research on olmesartan-based antihypertensive therapies, we are very proud of our program HypertensionCare that helps doctors and patients to more effectively control the blood pressure levels," says Joris Versteden, Senior Medical Director at Daiichi Sankyo Europe.

As part of this initiative, last year launched the interactive portal hypertensive patient support www.myhypertensioncare.eu, available in English for all of Europe (excluding the UK). Since then, the site has evolved and contains three distinct platforms: the original site dedicated to providing tools for healthcare professionals, one with hypertensive patient information and their families and a third that specifically promotes adherence of patients.

Adherence to treatment is a challenge for hypertensive patients. It is estimated that approximately 50% of patients discontinue treatment after a year.7 and lack of adherence has been identified as a major cause of failure to achieve blood pressure goals propuestas.8 support program myHypertensionCare patient aims to improve the understanding, commitment and compliance with treatment, accompanied by changes in lifestyle, all resulting in an improvement of the results clínicos.8, 9

About Daiichi Sankyo

The Daiichi Sankyo Group is dedicated to research and innovative drug delivery in both mature and emerging markets, with the goal of addressing unmet medical diverse decks. The company was formed in 2005 through the merger of two Japanese companies with a long tradition, Daiichi and Sankyo. With net sales of close to 8,500 million euros, Daiichi Sankyo is one of the top 20 pharmaceutical companies in the world. In addition to a consolidated portfolio of drugs against hypertension, hyperlipidemia, and bacterial infections, Daiichi Sankyo seeks new therapies in cardiovascular and oncology. The Daiichi Sankyo Group has established the "Hybrid Business Model" that combines innovative and generic drugs in order to reach as many patients as possible.

The company's global headquarters is located in Tokyo. The Daiichi Sankyo's European headquarters is located in Munich and has subsidiaries in 12 European countries in addition to a global manufacturing facility located in Pfaffenhofen (Germany).

For more information, please visit www.daiichi-sankyo.es or www.daiichi-sankyo.eu


Roberto Sánchez Martín. Corporate Communications Manager

Tel +34 91 5399911 roberto.sanchez @ daiichi-sankyo.es

Forward-Looking Statements

This press release contains forward-looking statements and information on the future development of the sector and on the legal and business conditions of Daiichi Sankyo Spain, SA Such statements are not final and are subject to change at any time, especially the common changes faced by a global pharmaceutical company, including the impact of the price of products and raw materials, medication safety, changes in exchange rates, regulations government, labor relations, taxes, political instability and terrorism as well as the results of independent demands and governmental inquiries that affect the affairs of the company. All statements included in this release are certain at the time of publication. Not represent any guarantee of future performance. Actual events and developments could differ materially from the forward-looking statements expressed or implied in these statements. Daiichi Sankyo Spain, SA not assume any responsibility for updating these statements about the future development of the sector or the legal or business of the company.


1.      OMS. World Hypertension Day Brochure, 2013.

2.      Lawes, CM, Vander Hoorn, S. & Rodgers, A. Global burden of blood-pressure-related disease, 2001. Lancet 2008; 371 (9623):1513-8

3.      Wang YR, Alexander GC, Stafford RS, Outpatient Hypertension Treatment. Treatment Intensification, and Control in Western Europe and the United States. Arch Intern Med. 2007;167(2):141-147

4.      Wolf-Maier K et al. Hypertension Treatment and control in five European countries, Canada, and the United States.

5.      Comparison of Sevikar® and the Combination of Perindopril/Amlodipine on Central Blood Pressure. www.clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/show/NCT01101009. Accessed May 2013.

6.      Mancia G, Laurent S, Agabiti-Rosei E, et al. Reappraisal of European guidelines on hypertension management: a European Society of Hypertension Task Force document. Journal of Hypertension 2009, 27:000–000

7.      Vrijens B, Vincze G, Kristanto P, et al. Adherence to prescribed antihypertensive drug treatments: longitudinal study of electronically compiled dosing histories. BMJ. 2008; 336:1114–1117.

8.      World Health Organization Report 2003: Adherence to Long-Term Therapies. www.who.int/chp/knowledge/publications/adherence_full_report.pdf. Accessed May 2013.

9.      Corrao G, Parodi A, Nicotra F, et al. Better compliance to antihypertensive medications reduces cardiovascular risk. J Hypertens 2011; 29(3): 610–618.

10.    Scott, L. J. and McCormack, P. L. Olmesartan medoxomil: a review of its use in the management of hypertension. Drugs 2008; 68(9): 1239-1272.

11.    Fabia et al., Antihypertensive activity of angiotensin II AT 1 receptor antagonists: a systematic review of studies with 24h ambulatory blood pressure monitoring. Journal of Hypertension 2007; 25(7): 1327-1336.

12.  Stumpe, K. O. Olmesartan compared with other angiotensin II receptor antagonists: head-to-head trials. Clin Ther 2004; 26 (Suppl A)A33-7


Photo By hugovillarroelabrego [Public domain or Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

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          Michael Douglas cancer caused by HPV   

The major traditional risk factors for throat cancer are excessive consumption of alcohol and snuff. But in recent years, it was discovered that some cancers of the throat can be caused by HPV, which can be spread through oral sex. This type of cancer is called throat cancer HPV-positive.

To determine if the cancer patient's throat is caused by HPV, doctors study the genetic signature of the tumor. On the other hand, patients with HPV-positive tumors have shown a better response to treatment and increased survival rate in clinical studies.

Although HPV is becoming the main risk factor for throat cancer, and is the cause of 70 percent of throat cancers in the United States, smoking, drinking and having a weakened immune system are still risk factors important for the development of cancer.

According to investigators, the rate of HPV-positive throat cancer is increasing, while the number of those caused by other factors such as smoking is decreasing.

So, although it seems likely, from what he said that throat cancer Michael Douglas has been considered as HPV-positive, it is difficult to know if your smoking and heavy alcohol consumption have contributed to the development of this cancer.

HPV belongs to a group of more than 150 sexually transmitted virus. Some of them are low-risk HPV simply produce warts on the skin. About a dozen HPV, mainly HPV types 16 and 18, have been identified as high risk of causing cancer.

While there is currently no sure way to prevent throat cancer caused by HPV, the U.S. is being recommended vaccination for boys and girls.

Picture PhD Dre at the English language Wikipedia [CC-BY-SA-3.0, GFDL or CC-BY-SA-3.0], via Wikimedia Commons

          Many women skip menstruation   

The study, published in January in the journal Contraception, is one of the first to examine why women do.

Researchers from the University of Oregon studied 1,324 women, college and graduate students, who had taken hormonal contraceptives in the past six months. Hormonal methods included oral pill, contraceptive patches and vaginal rings.

The 17 percent of participants said they had altered their pattern of rule by skipping the placebo week of pills in their containers or applying a new patch or the ring as soon as they finished the last, without a bye week. During the bye week "actually produce a cyclic bleeding menstrual imitates" according to dr. Maria Angeles Gómez Martínez, vice president of the Spanish Society of Contraception (SEC). "In the week of placebo pills are taken, no hormones in their composition, hormone levels decrease and the endometrium produces flaking and bleeding."

Some birth control pills are designed to lengthen the cycle between periods of bleeding. These extended cycle birth control pills allow women menstruate every three months, or even just once a year.

Of the women who delayed or skipped a period, half said have done for convenience or to prevent bleeding during a particular week of the month. About 30 percent said it was a personal choice and 16.7 percent said they simply wanted to avoid menstrual symptoms.

These results underscore the need to carry out a study to primary care to find out how women are using their contraception because, for example, many of them may be skipping the bye week to extend their cycles.

The patient information from your doctor should be important, because 53 percent of women who skipped a period they did on the advice of friends, family or other non-medical sources. Most of the healthy female population using hormonal contraception does so without risk to your health, but you should always by prescription and under medical supervision.


Picture By Victor byckttor (Own work) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons


          Early antibiotic treatment of severe sepsis   

Infectious disease specialists have advocated the early use of highly active antibacterial antibiotics to reduce the number of deaths caused by severe sepsis in the scientific session entitled "Facing the dilemma of mortality and resistance in Gram-positive infections" organized by Novartis under XXIII European Congress of the European Society for Microbiology and Infectious Diseases (ESCMID). This disease, which is often confused with 'blood poisoning', is one of the leading causes of mortality in the world 4, which could be significantly reduced with the use of drugs active against Gram + from Time 0 in which active sepsis5 code.

Sepsis or sepsis is the body's response to infection, either extra-or hospital, more frequent due to the immune status of patients and increased invasive techniques, intravenous catheters, prostheses and implants intravasculares1, 6. It is a disease whose incidence increases 2% annually and that records 18 million cases per year worldwide. Only in Spain are detected daily one to two new cases of severe sepsis per 100,000 inhabitants. Has a mortality rate of 50% 2 in case of septic shock, being superior to that of prostate cancer, breast cancer and HIV / AIDS juntos3.

To reduce these numbers, Dr Alex Soriano, Infectious Diseases Unit of the Hospital Clinic of Barcelona, ​​argued in his paper "Saving your patient: the importance of early treatment" the importance of early antibiotic therapy in the treatment of serious infections "to reduce mortality, length of hospitalization and possible relapse."

Although this is an increasingly common protocol, the usual tendency is to start with a classic less potent antibiotic and increase it if necessary. The consumption of antibiotics has been linked to the selection of resistant organisms, but for Dr. Soriano "the problem is not that you use a strong antibiotic from the beginning, but that the patient take for many days as necessary. The initiation of treatment should not be delayed unnecessarily and discontinued or adjusted according to the results of the microbiology laboratory. "

In your opinion, was suspected severe sepsis is better not to take risks, as it is in the patient's life threatening. "It is true that following this protocol is possible that people who do not need treatment so strong end up getting it but it does not pose a risk to the patient," said the doctor.

Area Director Integrated Hospital Care at Novartis, Begoña Gómez, highlights the importance of efforts devoted to R & D to address issues such as sepsis. "The health and quality of life of patients is our top concern, so that our work is focused on the development of drugs that allow us to care for and heal people, not forgetting to publicize the progress made in this regard between the medical community. " Sample this commitment, Novartis has held in the Congress of the symposium on ESCMID positive infections.

This release contains certain forward-looking statements relating to the business of the Company. There are factors that could modify the current results.

About Novartis

Novartis AG (NYSE: NVS) provides solutions for health care consistent with the needs of patients and societies. Focused exclusively to the area of ​​healthcare, Novartis offers a diversified portfolio to best meet these needs: innovative medicines, eye care, high quality generic drugs that help save cost, preventive vaccines and diagnostic tools, OTC; and Animal Health. Novartis is the only company that has achieved a leadership position in these areas. In 2012, the Group achieved net sales of 56,700 million USD and invested approximately U.S. $ 9,300 million (9,100 million excluding asset impairment depreciation and amortization) in R & D. Headquartered in Basel, Switzerland, the Novartis Group companies employ approximately 129,000 associates and operate in more than 140 countries worldwide. For more information, please visit the websites http://www.novartis.com y http://www.novartis.es.


1 http://www.news-medical.net/health/What-is-Sepsis-%28Spanish%29.aspx
2 http://www.intramed.net/sitios/librovirtual1/pdf/librovirtual1_52.pdf
3 http://www.cec.health.nsw.gov.au/__documents/programs/sepsis/world-sepsis-day/1_2_wsd_factsheet_english.pdf
4 http://www.biomerieux.com.mx/upload/SPANISH_Fact_Sheet_Sepsis-1.pdf
5 http://www.juntadeandalucia.es/salud/export/sites/csalud/galerias/documentos/p_3_p_3_procesos_asistenciales_integrados/sepsis_grave/sepsis_grave.pdf
6 http://www.intramed.net/sitios/librovirtual1/pdf/librovirtual1_52.pdf

Fotografía By Credit: Rocky Mountain Laboratories, NIAID, NIH [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

          Breast implants may hinder the diagnosis of cancer   

In the study of women with breast cancer, those who had breast implants tend to be diagnosed later than women without implants.

However, the results should be considered preliminary and more studies are needed to confirm them.

The breast implants themselves are not thought to increase the risk of breast cancer, but they can hinder the ability of doctors to see breast tissue by mammography. Early studies have investigated this issue have had mixed results.

The present study analyzed data from 12 previous studies that included women with breast cancer with and without breast implants.

Women with breast implants were 26 percent more likely to be diagnosed with breast cancer at a late stage, compared with women without them. However, this finding did not quite reach the rank of "important", which means it could have been due to chance.

In a separate analysis of the other five additional studies of women with breast cancer, those who had implants had a 38 percent greater chance of dying from the disease than women without implants.

This second finding should also be interpreted with caution, the researchers said, because some of these studies did not take into account factors that might influence the risk of breast cancer, such as obesity.

The new results are not definitive, but suggest that the effect of breast implants on mammography may be more of a problem than previously thought, said Dr. Stephanie Bernik, chief of surgical oncology at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York.

If it turns out that breast implants do, indeed, make it harder to detect breast cancer in mammograms, should be considered the selection of additional procedures, such as ultrasound, according Bernik.

Fotografía By National Cancer Institute [Public domain or Public domain], via Wikimedia Common

          Reviewed by pulmonologists and patients about the impact of asth   

The agreement between the view that a patient has of their illness and its treatment and your doctor plays an important role in the evolution of it. However, a study by the Asthma Research Program of separ (Spanish Society of Pneumology and Thoracic Surgery) shows a high level of disagreement both in the evaluation of the impact of asthma on daily life and in treatment satisfaction between pulmonologist and asthma patient.

Analyzing the valuations of 1160 patients and 300 pulmonologists, stands first in 53.6% of cases are found well-controlled asthma. Regarding the impact of the disease on the patient's daily life, the degree of agreement between the patient's opinion and his pulmonologist was only 57% and in 26% of cases, physicians (relative to patients) underestimated the impact. The lower degree of concordance in the clinical impact of the disease was observed in the development of sporadic recreational activities (57.1%) and daily routine (57.6%), and quality of life related to health (61, 5%).

The concordance in the degree of satisfaction with treatment was 56% and in 21% of cases, physicians (in relation to their patients) that grade desatisfacción underestimated. The lower agreement was observed in the assessment of symptom improvement (62.8%), in reducing the frequency of exacerbations (64.1%) and lifestyle changes recommended assumable (64.3%) .

In general, patients with well controlled asthma showed significant levels under sick-patient discrepancy (29% and 32.1%) compared with those of uncontrolled asthma (73.7% and 73.1%). This seems to indicate that the lack of agreement could contribute to reduced compliance and consequently to poorly controlled asthma.

In conclusion, the degree of concordance between patients and pneumologists in the perception of the magnitude of asthma is low, particularly in patients with uncontrolled asthma. VISA Study researchers believe there are several factors that adversely affect the patient-physician concordance appropriate, for example, increased demand for health care, limited medical visit time and false expectations about what patients expect their medical professionals.

The study VISA defined as the degree of understanding agreement between physician and patient, which both understand what the other expects of treatment, positive or negative and what are the expectations regarding the disease and its impact on daily life . "It's important to know by the patient the risks and benefits asthma treatment and at the same time, the physician must know the expectations and fears of the patient to be able to help," says Dr. Vincent Square, pulmonologist and director of Asthma Research Program of separ.

As a recommendation, Dr. Place notes that "very little agreement should be considered in asthma education programs administered to patients with poorly controlled asthma and include specific strategies to improve it. At the same time, health professionals should consider the perspective of their patients for the identification of specific therapeutic targets, individualized and achievable ".

          Importance of early detection of hemophilia   

  In Spain it is estimated that more than 2,000 people with hemophilia
    75% of cases remain undiagnosed and therefore untreated or not suitable
    The General Pharmaceutical Council has prepared a technical report - available in portalfarma.com - with all the keys of this bleeding disorder

Madrid, April 17, 2013. - Today marks the World Hemophilia Day, established in 1989 by the World Federation of Hemophilia, a condition which in Spain is estimated to affect 2,000 people and may have other hidden thousands of cases and which, according to various studies, 75% of hemophiliacs are undiagnosed. This not only prevents adequate treatment, but can come to receive inadequate treatment. For this reason the pharmacy is essential in the early detection of this disease and in counseling and referral to specialists for suspected.

Furthermore, in order to contribute to the knowledge of this and other bleeding disorders, assist detection and report on prevention and treatment, the General Council of Official Colleges of Pharmacists has developed a technical report which reviews the history , clinical manifestations, and the role of pharmacists in the prevention and treatment, among others.

Hemophilia is an inherited disease in which the blood can not clot properly. This disease is transmitted when a child inherits from their parents a gene that is altered and this alteration can not be made to synthesize a particular clotting factor. Various coagulation factors which are responsible for the blood clot breaks when a vein or artery, vital process, because if there were, the individual could bleed to death in the case of cuts or punches.

Hemophilia is a disease that is more common in males, but females may act as carriers of the abnormal gene. Depending on the type and extent of coagulation factor deficiency to appear in the blood, will produce more or less severe symptoms. In all cases normal bruising and nosebleeds after a stroke or bleeding gums by brushing. Hemophiliacs, in the case of cuts, hard to stop hemorrhages, and in more severe cases, bleeding in the joints and kidneys. If the joints are filled with blood, there is a physical or osteoarthritis. When clotting factor levels are too low, are frequently bruised, even though there have been no hits.

The diagnosis of hemophilia must be performed by specialized physicians. When a coagulation factor appears in very small quantity or absent, can be diagnosed in newborn infants by the presence of bruises all over the body. If levels are not low, the disease may go unnoticed. Can also detect the presence of hemophilia following surgery or bleeding when they occur frequently. Regarding the treatment of hemophilia, currently there extractive forms and recombinant coagulation factors, which allow a suitable treatment.
Precautions and treatments

Individuals with hemophilia should take some precautions. Thus, they should be avoided if possible cuts or be hit with any object, and if you have bleeding that can not stop, must go to a hospital urgently. Similarly, should avoid uncontrolled consumption of various drugs such as painkillers and anti-inflammatories, such as aspirin, because they may enhance the occurrence of gastrointestinal bleeding. Pain management can be done with other analgesics that affect blood clotting least as acetaminophen. In addition, patients should tell a doctor if they have frequent bleeding or if they are slow to cut, to conduct tests that screen out or confirm the disease.

Ultimately, hemophilia is a disease that can be serious, but thanks to the preparations available and following a series of basic medical precautions, you can make a normal life.

          Third Conference of Sports Medicine   

Moreover, with the participation of renowned experts in the field, such as Dr. Sakari Orava, Finnish surgeon who heads the unit Neo Sports Traumatology Hospital, in the city of Turku (Finland) and is collaborating physician Xanit Hospital Internacional. The conference will take place in the hall of the hospital from 16.00.

Dr. Sakari Orava, surgeon who has treated many elite athletes and top level on the international stage, will speak at the conference on the pectoralis major muscle rupture.

The event, moderated by Dr. Fran Moya, Chief of the Emergency Department of Xanit International Hospital, is addressed to practitioners regarding the management of patients who perform a routine sports and professionals related to the world of sport and its refresher course objectives pathologies associated with common sports, both professional and amateur.

Also present will be Dr. Herminia Alvarez Luque, International Hospital Xanit doctor, medical specialist for Physical Education and Sports, will offer a presentation on the initial conservative treatment of muscle injuries, Dr. Antonio Narvaez, Chief Orthopedic Surgery, Traumatology and Sports Medicine Hospital, will speak about sports injuries rotator cuff, Dr. Juan Manuel Alonso, Head of Medical Services of the Royal Spanish Athletics Federation, which will explain the hamstring muscle problems in the athletes and their conservative treatment and rehabilitation, and Dr. Lasse Lempainen, orthopedic surgeon and orthopedist Neo Hospital and University Hospital of Turku (Finland), who will present the surgical treatment for ruptured rectus femoris.

The day will end with a panel discussion with the participation of athletes and former athletes, as Adolfo Aldana, former player of the Spanish team, Real Madrid, Deportivo La Coruna and Barcelona Spanish or Ivan Medina, consultant physiotherapist and FC Malaga Professor of Physical Therapy at the University of Málaga, among others. It specialists discuss possible forms of presentation and management of injuries among professional and amateur athletes.

People who are interested in attending this event, free of charge, must confirm such assistance through the following mail: marita.ekman @ xanit.net.

          Share Health Information on the Internet   

This pattern, eventually, could bias the collective wisdom about doctors, hospitals or treatment options.

It is estimated that 60 percent of people seek health information on the Internet and social networks are part of that search. Social networks are not limited to big as Facebook or Twitter, but discussion forums or specific areas of health as PortalesMedicos.com.

The study analyzed data from the Health Monitoring Survey 2010, belonging to the Pew Internet & American Life Project. They conducted a telephone survey of 1745 adults who reported searching online health information and answered questions about the type of information sought and the degree of participation in social networking forums or health.

The results of the study revealed that 41% consulted about doctors, hospitals and treatments, 32% used social networks as part of their investigation. However, only 10% published opinions and 15% own comments in response to questions from others. People look generally more information than it provides.

Women are more likely than men to seek health information on the Internet, which is not surprising, since women tend to be in charge of health decisions within the family.

People with higher incomes, younger people or the city were more likely to access on the Internet that people with low income, elderly or rural areas. People with private health insurance were also more likely to seek health information online, probably because they have more health care options.

Finally, people with chronic diseases are twice as likely than those who do not have to look for health information online.

Source: Benefits To Sharing Personal Health Info Via Social Media

          Born Women's Unity of Light   

The data show that women's health has specific characteristics that require a comprehensive approach that extends the traditional boundaries of gynecology. So Light Clinic has launched the Women's Unit, a new service that aims to diagnose and treat specific problems and disorders affecting women's health in a comprehensive and multidisciplinary.

To meet this goal, the unit is built around a wide range of care services including a Health Coaching, Area of ​​Gynecology, Pelvic Floor specific units, Gynecologic Oncology and Breast Pathology. It also covers the areas of Rheumatology, Medical Oncology, Radiation Oncology, Nuclear Medicine, Urology, Physiotherapy and Rehabilitation, Dermatology, Cosmetic Surgery Body, Vascular Surgery and General Surgery and Proctology.

Trust and intimacy

The Women's Unit of Light, led by Dr. Manuel Albi, works by pooling resources and scientific and technical capabilities available with the highest quality perceived by the patient due to factors such as trust and intimacy. In this way, patients will find this device a service where you centralize all your health problems, and avoiding travel delays.

From the conventional gynecological, and based on that list of doctor-patient trust that is generated in the same, the Women's Unit of Light widens the margins of this model of care to meet all the demands of patient health and ensure access to the best specialists in each arm and the most advanced medical technology.

"The Unit, explains Dr. Albi-born with the aim of providing assistance to women overall, unlike what is done in other centers will be based on the promotion of health and well-being of women, if While also is super-specialized and highly qualified to treat all gynecological pathology. "

Thus, the unit is directed not only to women suffering from a particular disease, "but is open to all who want to promote their health and receive general advice on gynecology, osteoporosis, pelvic floor disorders, cancer prevention breast, ovarian cancer prevention and other diseases, "says Dr. Albi. "You have to promote health and treat disease if necessary, because what we do with the highest standards of quality, but without ever losing sight of the overall approach of the patient as a person," says the specialist.

Thus, the new service will focus on procuring the physical, psychological and social support to their clients, whatever their age or condition. However, the unit will emphasize women over 40, an age that represents an important set of changes to their health due to the onset of the loss of ovarian function. Specifically, this phase is associated with conditions such as changes in lipid metabolism; risk of atherosclerosis, weight gain, bone loss, skin changes and body image, genital changes at local and emotional instability. Women between 40 and 60 years also experience significant changes in their social and personal life, in your relationship with your partner and the children get older, in social and professional expectations, and so on.

"Absolutely every woman can benefit from the unit but it is clear that there is a point in life where it is very interesting health promotion, and once you are past the age of having children: women continues still very young but start worrying about some disorders such as menopause, loss of reproductive capacity, changes in your personal life or prevention of diseases such as osteoporosis or cancer, "says Dr. Albi.

          Dr. Kuwayama teach a course in Seville   

GINEMED GINEMED Foundation announces clinics and doctor's presence in the IV Kawayama Advanced Course and Vitrification Fertility Preservation, to be held on March 4 at the Hospital NISA Aljarafe Seville.

This is a theoretical and practical course, the first part is aimed at gynecologists, oncologists, biologists and other health professionals specialized in reproduction, interested in learning and deepen existing innovations in fertility preservation and medical applications in the field of Assisted Human Reproduction.

Meanwhile, the practical module of the course is aimed at professional biologists and related biohazardous, specialized in Human Reproduction, interested in setting up and optimizing egg vitrification technique for reproductive purposes.

Profile of Dr. Kuwayama

Dr. Masashige Kuwayama, initiated in 1986, a series of works in the field of bovine embryology, having developed various assisted reproductive techniques, which have been the basis of the current Assisted Human Reproduction (IVM, IVF, vitrification, growing embryo, ES cell).

Mechanism designed a series production of bovine embryos within a national project of Japan, developed in 1990. The result of this work, Professor Kuwayama the first calves obtained after vitrification of oocytes, in vitro fertilization, in vitro culture and blastocyst transfer in 1992.

All these advances in reproduction, are the basis of the current Assisted Human Reproduction, developed in 1999, the vitrification method for human oocytes Cryotop, establishing the first bank in 2001 human oocytes.

The first baby, after fertilization of vitrified eggs, born in 2000, in the U.S. and Japan, were obtained by using the method Cryotop.

In 2011, Dr. Kuwayama, has developed a new method, Cryotech, which allows 100% viability of oocytes after devitrification, which is a marked improvement over the method Cryotoc, also developed by Dr. Kuwayama.

Vitrification methods developed by Dr. Kuwayama are used in over 1,200 clinics around the world, in over 40 countries, and there are over 500,000 cases with successful results.

          SECPRE release from February 2013   
  •    Cosmetic surgery should be operated only specialists in Plastic, Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgery. "Cosmetic surgery is another facet of the field of activity covers doctors who hold the official title of Specialist in Plastic, Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgery," according to Supreme Court ruling 15/07/05.
  •     The specialty of Plastic, Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgery is a specialist degree official (MIR of 5 years).
  •     The cosmetic surgeon is equivalent to plastic surgeon, cosmetic, restorative, as part of their degree.
  •     This does not mean regulated specialty courses, workshops, master or cosmetic surgery because they do not provide training, education and duration sufficient for qualification in Plastic, Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgery. Doing either of these courses does not demonstrate the qualifications or knowledge necessary to practice as a plastic surgeon or cosmetic.
  •     Patients who undergo cosmetic surgery with a doctor who does not have the official title of Plastic, Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgery are getting into the hands of a professional is not legally accredited.
  •     From SECPRE is recommended for all patients who are considering undergoing cosmetic surgery require the official title of doctor specializes in Plastic, Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgery, it is the only way to ensure that will be treated by a trained professional .
  •     The SECPRE and its members appreciate the immense effort that perform informative media on cosmetic surgery. It also shows the best of provisions to provide accurate and authoritative information in this medical specialty.

          Shedding light on Psoriatic Arthritis and Psoriasis   

Approximately 70% of cases of skin involvement APs precedes the onset of symptoms. Because of its association with psoriasis since it precedes the occurrence of the APs, in most cases the key query is Dermatology for early detection. Therefore, early diagnosis of PsA and prompt referral to Rheumatology is a major challenge in the management of these patients, since there is evidence that early management can slow the progression of joint damage and the number of affected joints. Hence the importance of a multidisciplinary management between the two specialties.

With this intention had been held in Madrid on 1 and 2 February, the International Symposium "Shedding light on Psoriatic Arthritis and Psoriasis" scientific interest declared by the Spanish Society of Rheumatology (SER), Grappa (Group for Research and Assessment of 'm Psoriasis Psoriatic Arthritis) and the Spanish Association of Dermatology and Venereology (AEDV) with the support of the biomedical company Pfizer. Intended for rheumatologists and dermatologists, the meeting brought together the most renowned international experts in order to put the focus of attention of both specialists on the APs and highlight the key role of the rheumatologist, dermatologist collaboration for better management of this disease.

And is that the whole approach is still very widespread in Spain, something that would not only improve medical care to those affected, but it would optimize available resources. "This will achieve a saving in diagnostic tests, better use of treatment resources and greater patient satisfaction, and lay the foundation for a common language that will address cross-cutting research projects," said Dr. Lluís Puig, coordinator Psoriasis Group of AEDV, director of the Dermatology Department of the Hospital Santa Creu i Sant Pau, Barcelona and member of the Scientific Committee of the symposium.

An important practical aspect in this regard is the organization of interdisciplinary units. Although there are some units with excellent interaction between the two specialties in our country today it is certain that this joint approach is not widespread.

"One of the objectives of this meeting has been laying the groundwork to prepare guidelines interdisciplinary joint management of psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis, from a discussion based on the results presented at this meeting," said Dr. Puig.
A successful experience

On these results spoke Dr. Jordi Gratacós, Rheumatology Service Parc Taulí Hospital de Sabadell, founder of Gresser (Group for the Study of spondyloarthritis the Spanish Society of Rheumatology) and member of the Scientific Committee of the symposium, who participated with the paper "The experience at the Hospital de Sabadell Taulí Parc" on multidisciplinary units for patients with PsA.

"This is a pioneering experience in our country, because although collaboration between rheumatologist and dermatologist has been done in many hospitals, it is a volunteer collaboration of sympathy and / or proximity. Unlike this from the Department of Dermatology and Rheumatology, University Hospital of Sabadell Taulí Parc (with doctors and Gratacós as responsible Luelmo respective project) has created a multidisciplinary unit with the aim of improving the management of psoriatic disease high degree of complexity. To do this, we designed a strategy to sensitize both services the existence of this new tool for the management of psoriasis, consensuamos bypass criteria, we established a set visitation schedule (once a month) and, finally, create a unit accredited teaching around this project, "he said.

Today, with over 3 years of experience have shown the efficiency of the unit from the point of view of care and training (already created two similar units in other hospitals with peers who have attended one of our courses accredited) "The bottom line is that it is an efficient unit and exportable to other hospitals and clinical situations of our country," said Dr. Gratacós.
Genetic studies of diagnostic and prognostic

PHC is a very heterogeneous disease clinically (patients have many clinical differences among themselves), which poses challenges in interpreting genetic studies, measure disease activity, make a prognosis or treatment.

Therefore, the meeting also discussed the latest results from genome studies, taking into account the different clinical symptoms or phenotypes (psoriasis vulgaris, psoriatic arthritis with enthesitis, spondylitis, etc..), Which provides information about genes and predominantly inflammatory pathways in each of the clinical phenotypes of these diseases. This is important to understand the differences in level of pathophysiological mechanisms and may be useful for optimizing the diagnosis, prognosis and treatment.

"Biomarkers for the diagnosis and prognosis report about those genetic data, epidemiological or biological that can help identify patients with psoriasis will develop PsA, and the severity of the APs. The goal is to prevent or treat the disease early and more personalized, "said Dr. Juan Cañete, Arthritis Unit of Rheumatology at Hospital Clínic of Barcelona and member of the Scientific Committee of the symposium.

Dr. Cañete made a presentation on "common pathophysiological pathways of the skin and joints," in which he talked about biological therapies directed at specific targets, which stressed that "the effectiveness of these therapies both diseases shows that TNFalpha , and probably also the cytokines IL-17/IL-23 pathway are shared. However there are also differences in the response to anti-T cell therapies between psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis, suggesting that psoriasis have a higher autoimmune component psoriatic arthritis. "

Among the various anti-TNF biologic therapies currently available for this condition, there are differenc