The Evening Blues - 8-13-19
Hey! Good Evening!
This evening's music features Delta blues piano player Willie Love. Enjoy!
Willie Love - Lonesome World Blues
“The inflated ego of the tyrant is a curse to himself and his world – no matter how his affairs may prosper. Self-terrorized, fear-haunted, alert at every hand to meet and battle back the anticipated aggressions of his environment, which are primarily the reflections of the uncontrollable impulses to acquisition within himself. The giant of self-achieved independence is the world’s messenger of disaster, even though, in his mind, he may entertain himself with humane intentions.”
-- Joseph Campbell
News and Opinion
The old rules of politics no longer apply. The only language understood by Donald Trump and his coterie of con artists, billionaires, generals, misfits and Christian fascists—and a Democratic Party that has sold us out—is fear. Calling out Trump’s lies and racism does not matter. Calling out his nepotism and corruption does not matter. Calling out the criminality of his administration does not matter. Calling out its incompetence and idiocy does not matter. Calling out the abject subservience of the ruling elites to corporate power does not matter. Trump and his Democratic Party opponents are immune to moral suasion. The more we engage in this empty kabuki theater with its predictable outlandish outbursts, usually from Trump, and predictable outraged responses, usually from Democrats, the more certain are government paralysis and corporate tyranny. The drivel and invective that passes for political discourse is a giant hamster wheel that goes nowhere. It masks the root causes of our political and economic decline and fractures the population into warring camps that increasingly communicate through violence, which is why the United States has suffered mass shootings with three or more fatalities more than 30 times this year. ...
The American political system is not salvageable. It will be overthrown in a mass uprising—a version of which we saw recently in Puerto Rico — or vast swaths of the globe will become uninhabitable and the rich will feed like ghouls off the mounting human misery. These are the two stark options. And we have very little time left. ... A genuine populism and New Deal socialism are the only hope of thwarting the rise of neofascist movements. This, however, will never be permitted by the Democratic Party hierarchy, led by figures such as Pelosi, Joe Biden and Senate Democratic Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, who are acutely aware they would instantly lose their power without the prop of hundreds of millions of corporate dollars. They, and their corporate sponsors, will block all reform even if it means another four years of Trump and the extinguishing of democracy. The only thing they have to sell us is fear—fear of Trump and the Russians. While Trump sells the fear of immigrants, Muslims, people of color and those he brands as socialists. This is a toxic diet. ...
By stepping outside the system, including in our voting patterns, we begin to make the ruling elites afraid. Change comes from pressure. But if we are not willingly to become outcasts, that pressure will never happen. It was not the progressive wing of the Democratic Party, for example, led by Rep. Ocasio-Cortez, that first proposed the Green New Deal. It was articulated 12 years ago by the Green Party, which called for massive job and public works programs to transition our energy infrastructure to renewable energy. The deal was promoted by Howie Hawkins when he ran for the governorship in New York in 2014 and by Jill Stein during her 2016 presidential run. The proposal for a Green New Deal by the Green Party has a fundamental difference from what is touted by progressive Democrats. It does not argue that structural change and a transition to renewable energy will come by making alliances with corporate power. Instead, it insists that we bring about a transformational change in our economy by crushing corporate power and establishing a socialist system.
“The Democrats don’t have real solutions,” Hawkins, who is seeking the Green Party nomination for the presidency, told me in New York. “Trump is a racist scapegoater. He is a freeloading leech who doesn’t pay his own employees, contracts, taxes. He lies to the people. He needs to go. But if you replace him with a Democrat, they’re not going to enact ‘Medicare for All.’ They’re not going to do a Green New Deal. They are backing Trump, who now wants a war for oil in Venezuela, while the planet is burning from burning oil. It’s madness.”
American domestic and foreign policies were moving closer and closer to a definition of fascism before Trump ran for office. The United States threatens the world with nuclear annihilation, kills thousands with sanctions, and covers the world with military bases. At home the mass incarceration state created the largest prison system in the world. The surveillance state steadily diminishes civil liberties and human rights. Fascism is nothing new in this nation. The loaded word was part of conversations throughout the country when two mass shootings occurred in a 24-hour period. The first in El Paso, Texas resulted in twenty-two deaths. Nineteen of the victims had Spanish surnames. The second in Dayton, Ohio killed nine people, six of whom were black.
A confused nation can’t come up with rational answers even though most Americans are sincere in their desire to end the carnage. A dangerous combination of racism, political cowardice and violence accepted by some of the well intended is a recipe for inaction.
Congressman Stephen Cohen demonstrated the difficulty in coming to terms with American violence. In a twitter post which he later deleted, Cohen opined, “You want to shoot an assault weapon? Go to Afghanistan or Iraq. Enlist!” Presidential candidate mayor Pete Buttigieg enlisted with Cohen’s appalling buffoonery. “I did not carry an assault weapon around a foreign country so I could come home and see them used to massacre my countryman.” Cohen and Buttigieg prove that much of the hand wringing about violence is phony. The same people who may shake their fist at the National Rifle Association, or call Trump the dreaded F- word will shrug their shoulders or openly support killing if it is carried out by someone wearing a U.S. military uniform. Those who steadfastly oppose American imperialism and all of its violence are few and far between.
Most people are like Cohen and Buttigieg. They are cheerleaders for death and destruction if it is carried out by their government. They don’t bother to question, much less oppose U.S. imperialism, the greatest purveyor of violence in the world. Civilians are killed without warning in Afghanistan, Iraq and Somalia, just like the unsuspecting shoppers in El Paso. They die from lack of medicine in Iran and Venezuela due to U.S. sanctions. At the same time, racism is at the heart of domestic violence. A settler colonial state depended upon gun carrying white people to uphold the social order. The militias referred to in the second amendment were slave patrols needed to enforce the peculiar institution. Those militias continue in the modern day police force and in the minds of millions of people. Speaking of the police, all the talk of hate crime is a reminder that they commit more of it than anyone else does. Every day one black person and two others of different races will be killed by the police. Yet the term hate crime is rarely applied to the people who kill at will and with complete impunity. ...
The El Paso police took the killer into custody without firing a shot, or putting him in a chokehold. Nor did the killer turn his gun on them. There seems to have been a mutual understanding that the police and white people are on the same side, even when whites are mass killers. Fortunately the Dayton, Ohio police were less reverential and killed the gunman. Americans have an openly racist president, racist foreign policy, racist law enforcement and racist corporate media. The heirs of the slave patrols promise not to give up their guns and politicians either agree with them or cower in fear of the well organized lobby. White supremacy is foundational to the United States. Rooting it out requires more self-awareness than this country is currently able to muster. In the meantime, no one should be shocked when the next mass shooting makes the news. White supremacy is not the province of crazy killers or orange faced presidents. It is a normalized belief system for millions of people.
Nina Khrushcheva on Moscow Protests, Nuclear Tensions & How U.S. Media Creates Animosity with Russia
Russia and China have called on the United States to stop promoting protests that have sprung up in both countries, considering it a violation of their sovereignty. Washington's embassy in Moscow has been warning U.S. citizens not to attend "unauthorized" protests in Russia, but last week included a map showing the planned demonstration route as the start time of a scheduled rally among unregistered opposition candidates in Moscow. ...
Washington has frequently criticized the Moscow's handling of demonstrations and has at times endorsed the demands of Russian protesters. Following the crackdown on the rally over the weekend, a State Department spokesperson told Newsweek U.S. officials were "concerned" about the arrest and "reports of excessive force by police." ...
China has been rocked by months of mounting protests in the special administrative region of Hong Kong. The demonstrations began earlier this year after news broke of a proposed bill that could see residents of semi-autonomous Hong Kong extradited to face courts or sentencing handed down by the central government in Beijing. ... Beijing has used the appearance of U.S. flags at protests and meetings held by Vice President Mike Pence, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and White House national security adviser John Bolton with opposition figures like media entrepreneur Lai Chee-Ying and politician Martin Lee as evidence of Washington's involvement.
On Thursday, pro-communist Hong Kong newspaper Ta Kung Pao published a photograph of a woman identified as U.S. political counselor Julie Eadeh speaking with student activists including pro-self-determination Demosisto party leader Joshua Wong in a hotel lobby. The Chinese Foreign Ministry's Hong Kong Commissioner's Office then "urgently summoned a senior official at the U.S. Consulate General to lodge stern representations, expressing strong disapproval and firm opposition, and requiring clarification." ...
The U.S. has a long history of intervening in the affairs of countries across the globe, though it has accused Russia and China of doing the same, especially when it came to cyberwarfare and the spread of so-called "fake news." Despite setting out to forge better ties with Russian President Vladimir Putin and Chinese President Xi Jinping, President Donald Trump has found himself increasingly alienated from the two.
Taliban and US negotiators have wrapped up their latest round of talks for a deal that would see America shrink its troop presence in Afghanistan, a Taliban spokesman said on Monday.
According to Zabihullah Mujahid, the eighth round of talks, which had been taking place in Doha, finished after midnight.
"Work was tedious & effective. Both sides agreed to consult their respective leaderships for next steps," he wrote on Twitter. ...
Speculation has reached fever pitch in Kabul in recent days that an announcement about a US-Taliban deal may be imminent.
A symbolic, anti-boycott resolution that passed in the US House of Representatives in late July is "dangerous for Israel", a group of right-wing Israeli lawmakers has argued, as the measure affirms support for the creation of a Palestinian state.
"We would like to make our position clear that the establishment of a Palestinian state would be far more dangerous to Israel than BDS," they wrote, as reported by the Post. BDS is the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement, which seeks to pressure Israel to end its rights abuses against Palestinians.
Muslims in Indian-administered Kashmir spent the religious holiday of Eid al-Adha in a security lockdown, unable to call their friends and relatives as an unprecedented communications block remained in place for an eighth day. In Srinagar, Kashmir’s main city, Indian troops reportedly allowed some residents to walk to local mosques alone or in pairs, but areas of the city were almost entirely deserted on what is usually one of the biggest celebrations of the year.
Blocks on landlines, mobile phones, the internet and cable TV, introduced last Monday, continued.
Authorities said the restrictions were in place to avoid unrest. Last week 10,000 people reportedly took to the streets of Srinagar to protest against Delhi’s decision to revoke Kashmir’s special status. Government forces reportedly opened fire and used teargas. The Indian ministry of home affairs denied that any protests of more than 20 people took place – though TV footage appeared to show very large crowds chanting: “Go back, go, India, go.” ...
The communication blackout means there is very little independent information about what is happening in Kashmir, where tens of thousands of reinforcement troops have flooded the streets.
The last refuge of a scoundrel government? Looks like China has been taking notes from the U.S. gummint.
China labeled pro-democracy Hong Kong protesters “terrorists” on Monday after another weekend of violent clashes between protesters and riot police that saw one woman reportedly shot in the eye by police.
With the protests entering their tenth week, it is the first time Beijing has described them as “terrorism,” a designation that has stoked fears among protesters of a Chinese military intervention. Adding to those concerns was a show of force by China’s military, which sent armored personnel carriers to the southern city of Shenzhen, which borders Hong Kong, to take part in military exercises.
The People’s Armed Police have been assembling in Shenzhen, a city bordering Hong Kong, in advance of apparent large-scale exercises, videos obtained by the Global Times have shown. https://t.co/3KgaXeHw3C pic.twitter.com/YXAORMay0W
— Global Times (@globaltimesnews) August 12, 2019
The possibility of intervention by Beijing was raised once again when riot police clashed with protesters on Sunday night. Video footage shows officers firing tear gas inside confined subway stations and firing on protesters at close range with non-lethal ammunition. One young woman appeared to be seriously injured after being shot in the eye with a beanbag round, but police claimed Monday that footage of the shooting had to be verified, and that they couldn’t confirm “the reasoning behind this lady’s injury.”
Heh, the people of Argentina voted and then the capitalist class voted against the people.
Argentina’s currency plunged on Monday after the country’s centre-left opposition leader won an election primary, raising the prospect of a return to power for the former president Cristina Fernández de Kirchner. A stronger than expected victory for Alberto Fernández, whose running mate is the former populist leader, triggered a 30% fall in the value of the peso, which hit a fresh record low against the US dollar on the global money markets.
Fernández dominated the poll against the centre-right president, Mauricio Macri, who has struggled to revitalise the economy and curtail high inflation. The presidential election is due to take place next month. Fernández secured 47.4% of the vote, against Macri’s 32.3%.
Financial analysts said the prospect of a populist left-leaning government taking over in Buenos Aires could raise the chances of the country defaulting on its debt, which caused markets to slump in response. Shares in Argentinian companies also fell sharply on Monday, with the country’s Merval stock index tumbling by almost 30%. The cost of insuring government bonds from default spiked, and the price of a 10-year government bond denominated in US dollars fell by between 18 and 20 cents to trade around 60 cents on the dollar.
Edward Glossop, a Latin America economist at the consultancy Capital Economics, said: “The comprehensive victory for Alberto Fernández in Argentina’s primary election paves the way for the return to leftwing populism that many investors fear.”
Acting U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services Director Ken Cuccinelli defended a new Trump administration rule that will force immigrants to prove they won’t go on public assistance. ...
“We do want to avoid, looking to the future, a situation where people who are adjusting [immigration] status do in the future become dependent on those public benefits,” Cuccinelli said. “We certainly expect immigrants of any income to stand on their own two feet.”
The rule, which USCIS will implement on October 15, expands an existing law that requires people seeking permanent residency status to prove that they won’t be a financial burden to the government. Under the Trump administration’s new rule, immigration officers reviewing green card applications will assess how much money in public benefits the applicant has used, and identify people who are “more likely than not” to rely on public assistance for more than 12 months within a 36-month period.
The use of subsidized housing, food stamps, Supplemental Security Income, and some medical benefits through Medicaid will all “bear heavily against” people applying for permanent residency or temporary visas, Cuccinelli said. His agency estimates that it will apply to nearly 400,000 people annually. ...
But Cuccinelli could not tell reporters at the press conference how the government or citizens would benefit from the rule change, giving one reporter a perfunctory “no” in response to a question about whether USCIS has estimated how much money the rule change will save the U.S. annually.
More than 1,000 Jewish activists and allies gathered at an Amazon book store in New York City on Sunday to protest the online retail behemoth's collaboration with Immigration and Customs Enforcement, which swept up nearly 700 people last week in what was reportedly one of the agency's largest-ever raids. Over 40 demonstrators were arrested during Sunday's action, which included a sit-in inside the Amazon store.
As Gizmodo reported, the activists rallied "to draw attention to [Amazon Web Service's] cloud contracts with ICE and Palantir Technologies, which provides the agency with data for use in immigration raids and other enforcement actions."
— ALIGN (@ALIGNny) August 11, 2019
Amazon, run by world's richest man Jeff Bezos, has been described as a the "the invisible backbone of ICE's immigration crackdown" due to its lucrative government contracts.
‘Trump is ruining our markets’: Struggling farmers are losing a huge customer to the trade war — China
U.S. farmers lost one of their biggest customers after China officially cancelled all purchases of U.S. agricultural products, a retaliatory move following President Donald Trump’s pledge to slap 10% tariffs on $300 billion of Chinese imports.
China’s exit piles on to a devastating year for farmers, who have struggled through record flooding and an extreme heat wave that destroyed crop yields, and trade war escalations that have lowered prices and profits this year.
“It’s really, really getting bad out here,” said Bob Kuylen, who’s farmed for 35 years in North Dakota. “Trump is ruining our markets. No one is buying our product no more, and we have no markets no more.” ...
This year, China’s agricultural imports from the U.S are down roughly 20%, and U.S. grain, dairy and livestock farmers have seen their revenue evaporate as a result. Over the last 6 years, farm income has dropped 45% from $123.4 billion in 2013 to $63 billion last year, according to the USDA. ...
Kuylen, who farms roughly 1,500 acres of wheat and sunflowers, lost $70 per acre this year, despite growing good crops. Current government subsidies only cover about $15 per acre, he said.
In April, Becky Bond and Zack Malitz left Beto O’Rourke’s staff, less than a month after they’d helped the former Senate candidate rake in $6 million in the first day of his presidential campaign. It was seen, at the time, as a strategic shift for O’Rourke — away from the “big organizing” vision that drove his unexpectedly impactful 2018 Senate run. Now, Social Practice, the firm created by Bond and Malitz, who also worked on Sen. Bernie Sanders’s 2016 campaign for president, is turning its “big organizing” vision toward Cristina Tzintzún Ramirez, who on Monday announced her run for Senate in Texas.
Tzintzún Ramirez, a longtime organizer and the founder of a Texas-based nonprofit that mobilizes young Latino voters, is the latest candidate to jump into a crowded Democratic primary race for the Senate seat currently held by Republican John Cornyn — but she may be the Democrats’ best bet, considering her team and progressive platform.
Tzintzún Ramirez, who describes herself as a proud Irish Mexican American, is embracing progressive policy stances like Medicare for All, the Green New Deal, “massive divestment from Immigration and Customs Enforcement,” and rejecting all corporate PAC money. She also plans to roll out a “bold” immigration plan meant to “protect the rights of immigrant workers and families.” ...
Tzintzún Ramirez’s campaign plans on unseating the three-term GOP incumbent through the mobilization of the kind of voters that the political system has “underestimated and discounted,” like young voters and people of color, Tzintzún Ramirez explained. Unlike the establishment Democrats who run to the middle to try to peel off mythical moderate voters, the campaign hopes to prove that a progressive can win statewide by energizing a diverse coalition of voters.
Biden’s bumbles are back — and some Democrats are concerned. Former Vice President Joe Biden delivered a series of verbal fumbles and gaffes during his longest swing to date through Iowa, providing fodder for President Trump’s accusations that he’s slipped mentally and left some local Democrats worried that he’s lost a step.
At the Iowa State Fair on Thursday, Biden flubbed a standard campaign line. “We choose truth over facts,” he bellowed, instead of his normal “truth over lies.” Later that evening at an event with the Iowa Asian and Latino Coalition, he declared that “Poor kids are just as bright, just as talented, as white kids,” before trying to word-salad his way out of the flub: “Wealthy kids, black kids, Asian kids, no, I really mean it, but think how we think about it.”
At the same event, he mentioned former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher when he meant to refer to German Chancellor Angela Merkel, before correcting himself. Immediately afterwards, he seemed to attribute a Martin Luther King, Jr. quote President Obama often used to the president himself: “As Barack says, you know, we bent the arc, the curve, toward justice.” And on Saturday, he told reporters that he was vice president during the Parkland shootings, which occurred a year after he left office: “Those kids in Parkland came up to see me when I was vice president.” ...
“It’s dangerous territory, obviously. It plays into the narrative that Donald Trump would like to create about him,” said Grant Woodard, a Des Moines-based Democratic power player and former congressional chief of staff. “His greatest asset in this race is he’s perceived to be the most electable in the general election and these unforced errors he creates undermine that argument.”
Other Democrats in the state privately expressed concerns about Biden’s gaffes and what they meant, though many didn’t want to take potshots on-record to fuel a narrative they saw as beneficial to Trump.
Bernie Sanders 'Acing the Electability Test' as Another Poll Shows Senator Crushing Trump in General
Bolstered by strong support from independent and young voters, Sen. Bernie Sanders would roundly defeat President Donald Trump in a 2020 general election match-up, according to a SurveyUSA poll.
The poll (pdf) showed Sanders, a senator from Vermont and 2020 Democratic presidential contender, beating Trump by eight percentage points—50-42—in a hypothetical head-to-head contest. The survey also showed former Vice President Joe Biden defeating Trump by the same margin.
"Candidates such as senators Elizabeth Warren and Kamala Harris edged out Trump in potential runoffs, but their leads weren't wide enough to overcome the margin of error," Newsweek reported. "South Bend, Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg was measured at 42 percent, two points behind Trump in a potential matchup."
Brand new poll from SurveyUSA:
Bernie 50% (+8)
— Josh #Bernie2020 (@Gacheeta94) August 11, 2019
In response to the survey, the Sanders campaign pointed to the senator's strength among independent voters as evidence that he is the candidate best-suited to take on Trump in the general election. According to the SurveyUSA poll, Sanders—the 2020 candidate viewed most favorably by Democratic voters—would defeat Trump by 10 percentage points among independents. The survey showed Biden defeating Trump among independents by a smaller margin of six percent.
The gases heating the planet in 2018 were higher than humans have ever recorded, according to an authoritative new report from the American Meteorological Society and the US government. Greenhouse gas levels topped 60 years of modern measurements and 800,000 years of ice core data, the study found. The data used in the 325-page report is collected from more than 470 scientists in 60 countries.
The global annual average for carbon dioxide – which is elevated because of human activities like driving cars and burning fuel – was 407.4 parts per million, 2.4 ppm higher than in 2017. The report finds 2018 was the fourth-warmest on record since the mid-to-late- 1800s. Temperatures were .3C to .4C higher than the average between 1981 and 2010.
Sea levels were the highest on record, as global heating melted land-based ice and expanded the oceans. Sea surface temperatures were also near a record high. As the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration put it, the report “found that the major indicators of climate change continued to reflect trends consistent with a warming planet”.
A cloud of smoke and soot bigger than the European Union is billowing across Siberia as wildfires in the Arctic Circle rage into an unprecedented third month. The normally frozen region, which is a crucial part of the planet’s cooling system, is spewing carbon dioxide into the atmosphere and worsening the manmade climate disruption that created the tinderbox conditions.
The scale of the Siberian wildfires is underlined by this animation of the huge area of the smoke cloud: more than 5 million km².
For comparison, the EU is about 4.5 million km² and the contiguous US about 8.1 million km².
(Via @anttilip of @IlmaTiede)pic.twitter.com/RDhntqaDEO
— WMO | OMM (@WMO) August 12, 2019
A spate of huge fires in northern Russia, Alaska, Greenland and Canada discharged 50 megatonnes of CO2 in June and 79 megatonnes in July, far exceeding the previous record for the Arctic. The intensity of the blazes continues with 25 megatonnes in the first 11 days of August – extending the duration beyond even the most persistent fires in the 17-year dataset of Europe’s satellite monitoring system.
Mark Parrington, a scientist in the Copernicus Atmosphere Monitoring Service, said the previous record was just a few weeks. “We haven’t seen this before,” he said. “The fire intensity is still well above average.” He said the affected regions previously registered unusually high temperatures and a low level of soil moisture, which created the perfect conditions for ignition. Globally, June and July were the hottest months ever measured.
About 40% of all forests across the US are at risk of being ravaged by an army of harmful pests, undermining a crucial resource in addressing the climate crisis, new research has found. Tree-damaging pests have already destroyed swathes of US woodland, with the American chestnut virtually wiped out by a fungal disease and elms blighted by Dutch elm disease. About 450 overseas pests that damage or feed on trees have been introduced to US forests due to the growth in international trade and travel.
A PNAS-published study of the 15 most damaging non-native forest pests has found that they destroy so many trees that about 6m tons of carbon are expelled each year from the dying plants. This is the equivalent, researchers say, of adding an extra 4.6m cars to the roads every year in terms of the release of planet-warming gases.
This situation is set to worsen, with the spread of pests due to threaten 40% of the US forest biomass. Such a scenario would “have a devastating impact on the forests”, said Songlin Fei, a forestry expert and report author at Purdue University. “It is turning forests from storers of carbon to a carbon source. The best way to control these pests it through inspections and quarantine – once they are in the system it’s hard to stop them. For many trees it’s too late.”
The Trump administration is scaling back the US government’s latitude to protect species nearing extinction, as world scientists warn that a biodiversity crisis will soon put humanity at risk. The changes to how the government implements the Endangered Species Act, lauded by industry, will make it harder to protect the most vulnerable creatures. ...
Under the changes finalized on Monday, species categorized as “threatened” will not automatically receive the same protections as those listed as “endangered”. The new rules will allow officials to draw more attention to the economic impact of protecting a species. ...
The Fish and Wildlife Service could soon decide whether to protect the North American wolverine, a species that depends on a cooler climate to survive. ... Under the new rule, the climate crisis might not factor heavily into conservation decisions about the wolverine because its effects don’t meet the agency’s new definition for the “foreseeable future”. The government also could allow activities that will destroy wolverine habitat, arguing that any one project won’t eliminate all the animal’s options.
Worth a full read. Here's a taste:
Industry Cites 3M Experiment That Exposed Cancer Patients to PFAS to Claim the Chemicals Aren’t So Bad
Defenders of the chemicals known as PFAS have seized upon an industry-funded study of cancer patients as evidence that the compounds used to make Teflon, firefighting foam, and many other products aren’t as dangerous as they seem. The study, which was funded by the Minnesota-based global conglomerate 3M and published in February 2018 in the journal Toxicological Sciences, exposed 49 terminal cancer patients to high doses of PFOA. Now recognized as a widespread water contaminant, PFOA was originally developed by 3M. ...
The authors suggest that their finding upends the observation made in many other studies that environmental exposure to PFOA increases cholesterol levels and may motivate “re-examination of the implications of population studies exposed to much lower levels of PFOA,” as they write in the abstract. Indeed, the clinical trial is at odds with the extensive scientific literature on the chemicals based on populations of people who had been exposed to PFAS for years. That research shows that very low levels of the chemicals, which accumulate in the body over time, cause elevated cholesterol levels and interfere with developmental, hormonal, reproductive, and immune function. Among the health problems associated with the chemicals are reduced penis size, thyroid disease, and cancers.
Although PFOA does not appear to have helped combat the cancers in any way and, according to a note in the text, left some patients unable to complete the regimen due to fatigue, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea, the industry has promoted the research as a win. ... As pressure mounts for states and the federal government to set regulatory levels for PFAS, industry groups that face liability over water contamination have turned back to the small study as evidence that the scientific approaches previously used to calculate safe exposures levels “are not predictive of humans and result in unreasonably conservative values,” as the American Petroleum Institute wrote in comments it submitted to the Environmental Protection Agency on June 10. (Among the many industrial uses of PFAS are oil and gas extraction and mining.) ...
While industry representatives have also called on state regulators to consider the study as they weigh safety levels for PFAS, some have rejected the suggestion. New Jersey’s Drinking Water Quality Institute responded with skepticism to a 2014 request from the Chemistry Council of New Jersey to consider the then-unpublished research on the cancer patients, which was submitted to the agency as an abstract. While the industry group argued that the experiment showed that patients’ liver and kidney function wasn’t affected by PFOA, state regulators pointed out that the abstract referred to a patient who “experienced drug related toxicity (DLT) consisting of ‘grade 5 renal failure.’” It is unclear why that patient isn’t mentioned in the published paper.
Also of Interest
Here are some articles of interest, some which defied fair-use abstraction.
A Little Night Music
Willie Love & his Three Aces w/Elmore James - Everybody's Fishing
Willie Love - Willie Mae
Willie Love - Take It Easy Baby
Willie Love & his Three Aces - Nelson Street Blues
Willie Love And His Three Aces - Feed My Body To The Fishes
Willie Love - Shout, Brother, Shout
Willie Love w/Little Milton - Vanity Dresser Boogie
Willie Love & his Three Aces - 21 Minutes to Nine
Willie Love - Way Back
Willie Love - My Own Boogie