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Nutrition myths

A recent NYTimes article    SHARE

“Is Sushi ‘Healthy’? What About Granola? Where Americans and Nutritionists Disagree”

This article explores the different common beliefs and expert nutritionists beliefs.  It’s an eye opener!  Quinoa  anyone?

Foods considered healthier by experts than by the public:
Percent describing a food as “healthy” Nutritionists Public Difference
Quinoa 89% 58%
31
Tofu 85% 57%
 28
Sushi 75% 49%
26
Hummus 90% 66%
 24
Wine 70% 52%
18
Shrimp 85% 69%
 16

Later down the list, the only one that surprised me were the granola bars: probably too much sugar & sodium in them?  AND:   I’m not about to give up chocolate chip cookies and a few other things on the lower part of the scale – but maybe I’ll be moving them more into the 10-20% frequency range – or at least that’s my intention :-).

Here’s the NYTimes article link:

http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2016/07/05/upshot/is-sushi-healthy-what-about-granola-where-americans-and-nutritionists-disagree.html?ref=todayspaper&_r=0

 

 

 

Brexit op ed

Disclaimer: Please forgive me if I get political here for one blog: this is the one & only time in my ten year blogging history I will entertain politics.

I’m flummoxed over the UKs Brexit vote on Wednesday. Let me explain:  Brexit (short for Britain Exit) is the first time UK citizens vote on whether to stay as part of the European Union (EU) or not.

One of the three legs of sustainable living is social justice. With the ‘Brexit’ vote a few days away, it will send a global message about social justice and affect global futures for years to come.

  • Is it a local decentralized vs centralized issue?
  • Is is banks & finance vs. Main street?
  • Is is autonomous vs …?
  • Is it jobs vs trade?
  • Is it rich vs poor?
  • Is it micro vs super capitalism?

The short answer is YES, it’s all of these and more.

Before the Brexit vote it’s been the UK’s government, banks and corporations driving decision with the EU. For the first time now, it’s the English people’s turn to decide. There’s a lot at stake. You can read all about it in the pop media, but the story behind the story and its implications are more subtle. Here’s a couple links:

the Economist          USA Today

I can boldly say this one of the first big popular votes on super-capitalism by a western country. I am almost in favor of a ‘yes’ Brexit vote, just to see how corporate capitalists will react and spin the results to their benefit, and if other EU countries will follow suit. I can also argue for a ‘no’ Brexit vote because of all the people that will be displaced (mostly immigrants) and how once again lower economic sector, aka poor people, will suffer the most (jobs, inflation, taxes, etc).

But there are so many sides and complexities to the Brexit vote. For one, you have to look at the long-term history of England’s relationship to the rest of Europe. And, most importantly you have to look at the whole history and cultures within Europe.

Some of the immediate short term impacts will include:

  • The British pound will be devalued
  • Jobs will be lost (lo-wage ones disproportionally)
  • Borders will be closed
  • Tourism will decrease, visas required
  • Trade will suffer (both exports & imports to the UK)
  • NATO may be affected
  • Cost of doing EU business will go up
  • Energy prices affected
  • Right wing conservatives, isolationists will be emboldened
  • Central bank costs, trade costs will go up

My personal business experience with British business-persons was always fine because they presumed I was an American. When they found out (way later) that I was native German (and proud of it), they somehow seemed to distance themselves from me. My company landed many jobs in the Germanic and Scandinavian countries, but never one single one in the UK, even tho they were the leaders of PPP (Public Private Partnerships) – but that’s a whole other story. Back to Brexit…

The UK is way more aligned with the USA than it is with the EU. That’s a fact on many levels. The UK also needs the EU for finance, business and market reasons – that’s also a fact. What the UK doesn’t need, is a bunch of Brussels (Hdqrtrs of EU) bureaucrats telling them how to run their country. And most other countries in the EU feel the same way. And there’s the rub: One cannot compare the EU to the USA. The EU is not comprised of multiple states that are united together. The EU is a collection of age old cultures and countries with different languages, own armies, own banks, own currencies, etc before they all agreed to share everything but their languages and cultures. And therein lies the rub. How can multiple cultures come together and share? How can Greeks and Germans agree to austerity programs? How can Austria and Hungary agree to border controls? For the last twenty years the success of the EU always has been and will continue to be on financial and trade reasons. It’s big business! Or super-capitalism. If small is beautiful, and everything good is local, local; then how in the heck did the EU ever agree to ‘get bigger’? The answer is simple: money and competition.

In a world of every increasing trading partners and trading blocks (NAFTA, SEAT, PTA, etc) how could 28 small countries possible compete on the global stage? And so that’s one of the question in front of British voters in five days: Do you want to return to being a small fish within a big pond? Do you want to survive on your own, close down your borders, re-create your own banking and business centers?

Surely there will be short-term flashback from the EU if Brexit is passed. The EU has already fired many salvos across UK’s bow, warning it of dire banking and financial consequences. But do the people care? Do they want to be told what they can and cannot do? Will fear mongering of foreign ‘terrorists’ prevail? Are the people sick and tired of Banks and Corporations driving them further and further down economic parity? Stay tuned to June 23rd.

Boreal fires ++

under construction… stay tuned… draft

good great turnings

In italy there was a little court decision that has set a new precedent that maybe others will follow: excusing a hungry, homeless person from stealing food.

neutral: Scottish land laws are in the news… did you know that 16% of Scottish people own 10% of all the land in Scotland?

unravelings continue

Part of the great unraveling (WTR): The fire up in Alberta Canada is devestating the people of Ft. Murray with over 1600 homes destroyed, 88,000 people evacuated and horrific videos of cars driving through an inferno. The fire is in the middle of the infamous tar sands in Alberta.

On Monday, the blaze continued to burn uncontrolled, now covering 285,000 hectares (704,000 acres), officials said. By Monday evening it was moving 30 to 40 meters (98 to 131 feet) every minute and had jumped a critical firebreak north of the city to push into the oil sand camp areas.

The devastating fire in Ft. McMurray in Alberta last week bought home the future devastation of forest fires. Is it just a coincidence that this also happens to be the site of the world’s largest, dirtiest most ridiculous fossil fuel extraction? – TAR SANDS

Boreal fires. (northern) forests are 1/3 of the world’s forest – they are not as sexy or cool as tropical forest – so they don’t get a lot of attention.

I find it ironic and ominous that ‘nature’ has struck the epicenter of our human race’s most outrageous and environmentally destructive fossil fuel production areas. When will we wake up? Is this the start of Gaia unleashing its fury in a more obvious way – or will just shrug afterwards and blame it on El Nino?

but this is a whole different scenario. Alaska had it’s worse fire season last year. Russia exploded in 2012.

And the worse is yet to come!

These fires will also have many, many secondary effects. They will undobutedly warm the air around it and accelerate the melting of closeby ice sheets. There will also be some good news here, since ‘black is the new green’ and provide renewal and habitat for all kinds of species and wildlife.

In addition, winds are sometimes carrying soot from the northern fires onto the immense sheet of ice covering Greenland, darkening the surface and causing it to absorb more of the sun’s heat. In 2012, such soot contributed to melting the surface of virtually the entire Greenland ice sheet, the first time that had happened since 1889.

But the real big one is the long term, cumulative effect of losing all those green trees… they are absorbing CO2 as they stay green. When they burn, they release all that CO2 and can no longer absorb CO2. So this is another (albeit BIG one) great unraveling from Gaia that is edging us closer to positive spin: catastrophe!

ship drones!

Another news flash is the launch by the US Navy of the first drone ship. Can you image the ctombined terror of water borne & airborne drones? Personally, I’m reaching out to find out which activists (greenpeace?) will be on the front lines to blockade this unmanned ships of terror that will police 75% of Gaia’s surface (oceans) and bring untold violence from the seas.

Yeah + boooo

Good + Bad news on future gasoline prices  (fresh off the press):  The recent OPEC meeting in Doha failed to agree on an anticipated production quota for oil.  Markets are already starting to react and we’ll be in for lower gas pump prices for quite a while.   Good news for us, bad news for Gaia.

Looks like Iran + Saudi Arabia (Shia + Sunni ) will be waging an economic war of chicken, driving down global oil prices.

That may be good for your pocket book over the short term (and I will also be smiling at the gas pump only) – but it’s really, really sad for Gaia and our children’s future.  What it really means is that both Saudi Arabia (whose oil reserves are WAY overstated – insiders have known this for a long time) and Iran will try to outpump each other to break their opponent’s economic health.  The last, decades long war these two countries had killed 100’s of thousands – this one may last longer and be more devastating in the long run – globally.

Just when we think we may be coming out of an artificial bubble of low oil prices, another political twist continues to accelerate our inevitable rush toward post peak oil mayhem.

But stay tuned:  One little ‘incident’ in the Strait of Hormuz or OPEC country could spike oil prices at any time.

The ‘great unraveling’ (WTR) of our fossil fuel bubble continues at an accelerated rate now.

Repel mosquitoes naturally

With the fear mongering over mosquitoes (West Nile and Zika virus) perhaps we can forgo chemicals and pharmaceutic industry’s advertising/marketing of toxin loaded  (nanoparticles, DEET, etc) products and stick with Gaia’s own solutions:

Rub any of these on your skin before going out:  Lemon balm, Catnip, Basil, Lavender, Peppermint, Citrosom, Rosemary + Sage.   I’m going to put these into some outside water containers and see if they can deter larvae from forming.

http://www.rodalesorganiclife.com/wellbeing/8-plants-repel-mosquitos-naturally?cid=soc_Rodale%27s%20Organic%20Life%20-%20RodalesOrganicLife_FBPAGE_Rodale%27s%20Organic%20Life__

 

great unravelings

One of the teachings within WTR (work that reconnects) is about the great unraveling calling us to do the great turning.  It’s best put by a 14 yo      posted on WTR website          04/20/2015     “This time we are in is to me an opportunity. I believe we are faced with an incredible challenge to take part in the Great Turning or the Great Unraveling. There is no guarantee either way but as Joanna Macy once said, it is in uncertainty that we are our truest selves. I think that we have to take action in every way we can to shift our consciousness and sense of community. It is critical that we take charge right now, and open our eyes to the true need of the Earth and the state we have put it in. I think that it is schools like Manzanita and communities like the one we have, that will thread the importance of earth connection and social connection back into our society, which I believe will eventually result in the Great Turning.”– Puma B., age 14, Manzanita School, 1/30/15

TWO current  unravelings:

Earth wobblings:   Hold steady now… our 60,000mph ride seems to have a front end misalignment.  Seems the melting ice in the Artic is causing a bit of an imbalance and increasing Gaia’s wobbling.  The pop media claims its the 900m tons of melting ice in the Artic.  NASA  JPL scientists claim: The finding was a surprise. This region has lost water mass due to depletion of aquifers and drought, but the loss is nowhere near as great as the change in the ice sheets.  So why did the smaller loss have such a strong effect? The researchers say it’s because the spin axis is very sensitive to changes occurring around 45 degrees latitude, both north and south. “This is well explained in the theory of rotating objects,” Adhikari explained. “That’s why changes in the Indian subcontinent, for example, are so important.” 

Another pop media comment (mostly by climate change deniers) was that we’ve only measure earth wobble for 35 years).  Scientists actually have wobbling data (peer reviewed) dating back 44,000 years.  But (this is what alarms me!) scientists are saying that the  current increase in wobbling is generally meaningless!  say what?   My intuition and 15 billion year connection with Gaia tells me otherwise.  Perhaps the increased wobbling is another part of the great unraveling, and we need to double down on the great turning.

I’ll put my creds with the Inuit elders in the Artic:

The elders maintain the Sun doesn’t rise were it used too, they have longer day light to hunt and the Sun is higher than it used to be and warms up quicker than before.  The elders who were interviewed across the north all said the same thing, their sky has changed.  The stars the Sun and the Moon have all changed affecting the temperature, even affecting the way the wind blows, it is becoming increasingly hard to predict the weather, something that is a must on the Arctic. The elders all agree, they believe the Earth has shifted, wobbled or tilted to the North.

 

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The Zika virus is now being raised to ‘alarm level’.  The Zika virus may be associated with an autoimmune disorder that attacks the brain’s myelin similar to multiple sclerosis, according to a small study that is being released today …

For those familiar with biomimetics, nature has several processes at play:  daily happenings,  systems + processes and strategies.  It’s this last one that we really know little about.  Seems to me that each couple years nature throws another virus or disease at us that confounds all our science + medical knowledge.  It’s almost as if nature was spying on our research and devising new ways to circumvent our vaccines, antibiotics, etc.  So maybe the Zika virus will take center stage for a while, we may or may not get the better of it… but WAIT, nature has more in store for us.  Why don’t we just simply honor nature’s resilience and stop declaring war on it?  Perhaps we can just embrace a great turning toward Gaia and trust in her rather than science + pharmaceuticals…  just sayin’

 

WTR path for LeLc

I just got back from a weekend workshop with Joanna Macy and the Work That Reconnects (WTR) and it has re-inspired me to focus more. We will be taking the LeLc (Living Energy Learning Center) and this web page more in the direction of WTR and its network.  We have finally found a ‘home’ of like-minded people where our work can bea very small niche within a larger movement – it fits perfectly, as it always does.

Joanna is SO amazing.  Just to be in her presence is a gift, and to talk directly with her is to be in the presence of higher being.  I’ve met very few people in my life so gentle + fierce at the same time, so compassionate and driven, so humble and inspiring.

The next few blogs will be about how the ‘energy infrastructure’ is unraveling, and how there are all kinds of ‘new paths’ that are bringing a sustainable life to our energy futures.

‘Sustainable’ – no more = ‘sustainable life

Joanna stated that the word ‘sustainable’ is really not a good word anymore.  It is a ‘sustainable life’ that we need to start calling it.  These two words together present a more clearer picture of what many of us mean to say.

no fly zone

I’ve been touting a ‘no fly zone’ for myself for over a year now. I talk to people about it and many dislike the idea for various reasons. I used to compromise and say – longer trips, bigger + newest planes – as a way to reduce the eco-footprint of flying. But no more. I am back to a total ban: a ‘no fly zone’. This article by Dr. Kalmus convinced me: “ How far can we get without flying?”

There are so many dubious facts in the pop media. The one I had a hard time accepting, and not enough time to recalculate it was that flying coast to coast was better than driving. Bullshit. Dr. Kamus states: ‘Four people in a plane produce 10 to 20 times as much CO2 as those same people driving a 25 to 30mpog car the same distance.” He also states: “climate impact of planes is likely two to three times greater than the impact from CO2 emissions alone… planes emit mono-nitrogen oxides into the upper troposphere…”

But the beauty of Dr. Kalmus article is that he stopped flying for social and personal rewards.

There should be frequent non-flyer miles for people like him. Who wants to start one?

From article in:  YES magazine http://www.yesmagazine.org/issues/life-after-oil

by    Dr. Peter Kalmus (NASA, JPL atmospheric scientist)  http://becylcing.life

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Another great article in this issue YES magazine… ‘After Oil’ #77, Spring 2016

..asking whether renewable energy can maintain our current lifestyle… is like asking if renewable energy can keep us living unsustainably.”  by Richard Heinberg

“100% Renewable energy – as with anything hard, first we start with the easy stuff”

 

 

 

Energy Turnings

I’m an advocate for Joanna Macy’s Work That Reconnects (WTR)  it also implies that we need to undertake a GREAT TURNING.

Work that reconnects

So I am going to start using the concept ‘making turns’ in the right (or wrong) direction as a pseudonym for ‘good or bad’, right or wrong direction, positive or negative, optimistic or pessimistic, etc.

BTW: WinSol’s LeLc will be hosting and facilitating a WTR introductory workshop in the near future – stay tuned.

Part of living energy is also the energy we use everyday as we make the great turn from dead energy to living energy. Over the last month there have been developments in our current energy markets. Here’s a summary of those energy turnings. You can click on each one to find the details:  under construction… pardon our dust…

turning in the right direction

1. the largest fossil fuel leak ever, has been capped.  

2. The airline industry has agreed to emission standards

turning in the wrong direction

5. oil price continues to slide as suppliers quarrel over market share

6. Iran will start marketing its oil soon and drive prices even lower

7. We’ve built the largest ever freight ship, and LNG ship in the USA

8.

Continue reading Energy Turnings

Shrimp with bacon + olive oil?

 

mmm……looks appetizing right?

well, I won’t be saying this at any dinner parties:  But shrimp, bacon and olive oil are not what we think they are.

I can’t seem to get away from blogging about food. Why are there  so many food distortions, outright lies, and hidden secrets?  Here’s the latest:

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I’m a regular fan of CBS  60 minutes… I know, I know: they are heavily edited + scripted for THEIR agenda,  but they still produce original investigative journalism – unlike 90% of web content.

Let’s start with olive oil, or what olive oil isn’t.  Look at a bottle of olive oil.  Chances are it will say ‘Made in Italy’ well it’s neither from Italy nor is it olive oil!

Check out ‘Agromafia’ a 60 minutes segment that aired on Jan 3, 2016. http://www.cbsnews.com/news/60-minutes-agromafia-food-fraud/

Here’s some highlights:  Olive oil is a $16 billion industry.  Generally olive oil costs $50 agallon.  But sunflower oil costs $7 a gallon.  Add a little chlorophyll to sunflower oil and it’ll look just like olive oil!  Let’s see $50 vs $7… quite a margin!   So the Italian mafia brings in sunflower + canola oil from North Africa, reprocesses it with Chlorophyll, relabels it  – and walla:  a whole new profit center is borne:  3x more profitable than cocaine.  Allergy people BEWARE :  some of this fake olive oil is based on nut seed oil.

anecdote: just yesterday I bought some italian pasta instead of USA pasta (thinking I would avoid the inevitable GMO that most USA wheat has) … but alas! italian pasta is neither also!  At best it’s contaminated with pesticides and poisons.

Italy appears to have its own hideous, fake food supply chain …  just like China++   So sad!  The ‘made in Italy’ label has been altered forever. I stopped trusting Italian leather decades ago, ever since an Asian store keeper in Venice tried selling me a fake leather jacket .  A little due diligence revealed cheap China crap with ‘made in italy’ knockoffs that were everywhere – even in some  hi-end stores.

Nothing seems to be immune  from the mafia’s food altering cartel: Italian wines are altered with poor quality table wine, relabeled ‘made in Tuscany’;  40,000 gallons worth >$5mil last year alone.  Tomatoes, sauce, pasta, milk, bread… nothing seems to be immune from the mafia’s reach.

From farm to fork:  from supermarkets, to transportation, to farm harvesters, growers + seeds… the entire supply chain!!  The Italian mafia appears to controls everything: especially in Sicily, where the majority of food vendors and restaurants are controlled by the mafia.

The 2007 New Yorker magazine was the first publisher of this phenom.  Why has it gone unnoticed for so long  (8 years!)?

So step aside China, we have a new wiener in the food deception game!  The real sad losers in all of this are the Italian people. Gone will be their ‘made in Italy’ reputation and pricing premiums.  The real Italian artists and artisans could be driven out of business. Hopefully they’ll re-label themselves, and be able to market their wares under some new ‘unalterable, non-mafia’ controlled label.

Thank you New Yorker + CBS/60 minutes – there are still a few investigative journalists around… I might just start subscribing to the New Yorker!

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 let’s look at shrimp.

Have you noticed how cheap it’s been for the last year?                    There’s a reason for that:    In Thailand + Mynamar +, poor migrant kids are being sold to and locked inside shrimp factories to peel Red Lobster, Kroger, Olive Garden, Wal-mart and others’ cheap shrimp. They get paid $3-4 for a 16 hour day peeling shrimp.

In 2015 alone, over 2,000 shrimp slaves have been freed as a result of an ongoing AP investigative series.  42% of Thai shrimp are contaminated.  Heavy antibiotics are used by shrimp farmers. As much as 38% of the mangrove forests being cut, can be directly linked to shrimp farming.

To escape detection, Asian shrimp are often combined with other seafoods and sold as combo patches to unsuspecting western markets. Last week, even Whole Foods had to admit it didn’t know if its Thai suppliers were mixing ‘slave shrimp’ into its seafood supplies.

sources: SF Chronicle page A6, December 15, 2015 and Mother Jones Jan6, 2016:  http://www.motherjones.com/tom-philpott/2016/01/six-reasons-think-hard-about-shrimp-craving

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And now for some GOOD NEWSbacon

Everything’s better with bacon – right?

You may have seen the latest WHO (World Health Organization) report that a couple slices of bacon are equivalent to two packs of cigarettes a day – what BS!  Here’s the real story behind the NPR + pop media story:

WHO merely put cured meats on its list of likely carcinogens.  Within three days, over two dozen social media outlets posted that bacon was hazardous to your health — they ramped up the WHO listing to an become an edict on avoiding bacon + ham. The Spanish were pretty pissed about that!

Here’s the real story: There’s always been a correlation linking nitrates in cured meats to cancer. BUT  ‘correlation does not imply causation’. The WHO did not imply causation – they merely put cured meats on their ‘links to cancer’ list – not an increased risk!

Smoking increases lung cancer by 2,500%, eating two slices of bacon each day increases cancer risk by 18% – and even that is misleading, since the average person has about a 5% risk of colorectal cancer.  When you put the two together it comes out to about a 1% increased personal risk – unless of course you’re driving a car while eating your bacon burger.  So… enjoy your bacon!

(source: Catalystmagazine.net page 16, December 2015)