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The Lancet’s 2015 Take On Obesity

Posted February 20, 2015 by Arya M. Sharma, MD

In 2011, The Lancet dedicated a special issue to the topic of obesity – the general gist being that obesity is a world wide problem which will not be reversed without government leadership and will require a systems approach across multiple sectors. The Lancet also noted that current assumptions about the speed and sustainability of weight loss are wrong. This week, The Lancet again dedicate… Read More »

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Activism

Looking for Heroes?

Posted February 19, 2015 by Stephen Elliott-Buckley

I’ve been watching The Book of Negroes this week. I have no words. I only recognize justice, integrity, brutality, acknowledgement, witnessing, story telling and a myriad of other foggy responses. It’s easy to also ponder qualities of heroes. Then I read this from earlier this week, and nodded. Do you get it? Anishinabe Women Protest … Continue reading Looking for Heroes?

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Environment

#GxE Autism Paradigm Still #MSSNG From Autism Disorders Research, Understanding

Posted February 18, 2015 by H L Doherty

Several years ago it appeared that a new paradigm for understanding autism disorders was emerging, one which would allow greater understanding of the cause, or causes, of autism.  Historically, as was noted by Teresa Binstock, researchers, and those who fund autism research, took the view that autism has  “gotta be genetic”.  By 2010 there was hope that finally the autism researchers’ obsessive belief that autism is entirely genetic was giving way to the GxE (Gene Environment Interaction) model.  With the CATS study it appeared that  GxE was actually being reflected in autism studies. Since the CATS study though it appears that autism researchers and those that fund such research, including Autism Speaks, have fallen back into their old, unproven belief that autism is entirely genetic.
Autism Speaks reported on  its MSSNG web site page the results of the recent autism genome research project:  
Surprising finding makes cover of Nature Medicine; study data becomes part of historic first upload to Autism Speaks MSSNG portal for open-access research

 
January 26, 2015
The largest-ever autism genome study reveals that the disorder’s genetic underpinnings are even more complex than previously thought: Most siblings who have autism spectrum disorder (ASD) have different autism-linked genes.”
The MSSNG project and page reflect Autism Speak’s deep embrace of the unsubstantiated belief that autism is entirely genetic.  There is no mention of the possibility that autism arises from gene environment interaction. Although there are now more and more genetic components speculated to give rise to autism disorders there is no mention of the word or concept of environmental factors or gene environment interaction as possible components of autism causation. Instead the gene researchers having failed to identify a specific cause of autism turn to an explanation that many parents, including me,  have suspected for some time … that autism is in fact a complex group of varied disorders or symptoms;  that autism is extremely heterogenous in nature and that autism should more properly be referred to as autism(s) or autism disorders.  What the gene researchers and their funding backers at autism speaks do not seem to acknowledge is that with the varied autisms, autism disorders or symptoms being recognized and with no specific causal bases for these mulitude of genetic factors it might also be time to re-xamine or at least consider the possibility that autism might result from GxE, gene environment interaction. 
Maybe someday the “it’s gotta be genetic” obsession will receive more critical analysis from autism “experts”. For now though GxE is still MSSNG in the mind sets and articles of faith of autism’s most prominent researchers and funding authorities for autism research.
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Environment

Greenpeace’s thuggery

Posted February 8, 2015 by JR

James Delingpole:

All right – so accusing Greenpeace of being dishonest, bullying, hypocritical, scientifically illiterate, menacing and environmentally damaging is about as novel and contentious as suggesting that Michelangelo may have painted the Sistine Chapel.

… a compliant media … still tends to view Greenpeace as a loveable, homespun collective of gallant eco-crusaders in chunky-knit sweaters and rubber dinghies, rather than the thuggish, overmighty zealots they actually are.

a few examples:

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Activism

Science World Ignores Climate Science

Posted January 15, 2015 by Stephen Elliott-Buckley

Well, why would you support something called Science World when it participates in a program to brainwash students into supporting the liquid natural gas industry, despite the science indicating how harmful it is to the world. Climate change deniers deny science. The BC government pretends to care about climate change but is roaring ahead with … Continue reading Science World Ignores Climate Science

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Activism

Which BC Corporations Would YOU Like to Euthanize?

Posted January 6, 2015 by Stephen Elliott-Buckley

Oh, what a list it would be! Enbridge? Kinder Morgan [the zombie child of Enron]? Imperial Metals [fanciful producers of the Mount Polley Mine disaster]? Other companies that treat workers badly like IKEA or Rocky Mountain Railtours? Capitalism is all about worshiping Frankencorporations that are immortal, legally a human being, limit the liability of owners … Continue reading Which BC Corporations Would YOU Like to Euthanize?

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Activism

A Whale Kisses the Bottom of YOUR Boat!

Posted January 3, 2015 by Stephen Elliott-Buckley

I haven’t been able to get this image out of my head for days. It keeps coming back. It keeps asking me why we all feel so disconnected from nature all the time, in the bubble of our cars, smart phones and wifi lives. Ecology is in the corner of your eye. Darting over there. … Continue reading A Whale Kisses the Bottom of YOUR Boat!

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Activism

Capitalists Working on Climate Change?

Posted January 2, 2015 by Stephen Elliott-Buckley

As you know, I’m not one to tout the marvels of capitalism, however there is this. Out of the 6 of the most hopeful climate stories of this year at the Climate Reality Project, is this one about businesses doing [if only slightly] more than greenwashing or PR sexied up as climate action. My hashtag … Continue reading Capitalists Working on Climate Change?

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Environment

Irony?

Posted July 23, 2014 by Mulder

Oh, the irony. the pine tree planted in 2004 near Griffith Observatory in memory of George Harrison will be replanted shortly because the original tree died as the result of an insect infestation. Yes, the George Harrison Tree was killed by beetles

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Environment

Salmon spawn in East Vancouver?

Posted November 12, 2013 by Darren

The other day–I can’t recall where–I read a story about salmon spawning in East Vancouver. It turns out that they spawn in Still Creek, near the…

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