There Goes the Neighborhood

Perhaps you are aware of the growing concern over antibiotic resistance. It is rapidly becoming a concerning issue. Many of our antibiotics no longer work effectively. Long gone are the days of penicillin and amoxicillin. Several of the antibiotics developed only a few years ago are no longer working.

You may ask how this affects you? We live in a first world country. We have health care, sanitation, and public services that ensure a certain level of hygiene. This is only an issue in less developed areas of the world, right? Nope. This is going to directly impact all of us and sooner than we thought.

The World Heath Organization (WHO) published a list of bacteria that they have prioritized as the biggest threats on February 25, 2017. This is the breakdown of the bacteria and the strongest antibiotic that organism is resistant to:

Priority 1: CRITICAL

1. Acinetobacter baumannii, carbapenem-resistant

2. Pseudomonas aeruginosa, carbapenem-resistant

3. Enterobacteriaceae, carbapenem-resistant, ESBL-producing

Priority 2: HIGH

1. Enterococcus faecium, vancomycin-resistant

2. Staphylococcus aureus, methicillin-resistant, vancomycin-intermediate and resistant

3. Helicobacter pylori, clarithromycin-resistant

4. Campylobacter spp., fluoroquinolone-resistant

5. Salmonellae, fluoroquinolone-resistant

6. Neisseria gonorrhoeae, cephalosporin-resistant, fluoroquinolone-resistant

Priority 3: MEDIUM

1. Streptococcus pneumoniae, penicillin-non-susceptible

2. Haemophilus influenzae, ampicillin-resistant

3. Shigella spp., fluoroquinolone-resistant

Five of those bacteria; enterobacter, staphylococcus, campylobacter, salmonellae, and shigella, are often contracted by consuming adulterated food. The CDC has a very simple chart that details the estimated numbers. The numbers are estimated because most individuals suffering from a food born illness don’t report it. Usually we attribute it to a stomach flu. Those 24 hour bugs you hear people complaining about in the office are most likely food poisoning. And if you think you know what caused it you are most likely wrong. It takes days and sometimes weeks to develop symptoms. I don’t remember what I ate over the weekend, let alone last week.

You are probably thinking that this is not something of major concern. After all, we have regulations, rules, and laws to keep our food safe. That is what the USDA and FDA are in place to do, ensure safe food. Without going into the current shortcomings of both these agencies (because nothing is perfect) or delving into the debate about country of origin lets take a look at the proposed future for all the agencies that keep food born illness at bay.

The current administration wants to reduce regulation. It was a major part of their campaign. They say it will be good for business and that will be good for employment. But consider that part of that includes reducing the number of inspection on food and drugs. The executive order to reform regulations was signed on February 24, 2017. Now, by executive order, these agencies will need to remove two regulations in order to institute one new one. Now would be the time to call your congressmen and tell them what parts of the food code you want to keep. While you are at it, ask them to pressure the new administration to put all the USDA information back on the public website. It appears to have been a miscommunication, but the data is still not available. This doesn’t just impact the public, industry professional use that as well. Last week a colleague needed data and had to call congress and file a request. We all know how quickly they move. Want more opinions? This article from late January had the opinion of several top people in the food industry.

So to summarize this for you there is a rapidly growing concern that our science is not keeping pace with the bacteria, it puts the general public at risk, half of the concerning bacteria can be contracted through food, the white house wants to reduce regulatory oversight of many organizations including the USDA and FDA, information is being removed or withheld, and there really is not a plan once the antibiotics stop working. Stop and think about what that would be like, or check out the BBC if you can’t imagine. Now go get a stiff drink, because you are going to need one.

Thanksgiving

It’s Thanksgiving. And on this day let us not forget the true meaning of this beloved holiday. The brutalization of indigenous people.

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Yup, it’s still happening as we speak in North Dakota. Sure, the authorities are denying that they were intentionally targeting individuals with water hoses in below freezing temperatures, but what did you expect them to say? Do you really think they would stand in front of the press and admit to valuing human life so little? Do you think that humans have evolved to prioritize equality over ego? If you do I want to know what rock you have been hiding under because that fucker is impenetrable!

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So eat your turkey, drink your booze, and make sure you take some time to shop, shop, shop for those good deals. Don’t give a moments thought to people standing in the cold trying to peacefully protect not only the water that affects them, but the water supply for all of us. Don’t ponder for a second that these are the people who have been lied to, stolen from, demonized, and systematically abused by both the government and the rest of the population. Forget about the violence, the forced sterilization, and the diseased blankets. Turn a blind eye, again, to what our tax dollars are supporting.

Because it’s Thanksgiving, the day we feed into the fallacy of an inclusive America.

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VWW- Interpellate

Interpellate: 

to question (someone, such as a foreign minister) formally concerning an official action or policy or personal conduct

 

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This is one of the things that is sorely lacking in America today. No one questions the governing bodies. Oh sure, among ourselves we do, while gathered round tables in restaurants and coffee shops, maybe at the dinner table if anyone is home from one of their many jobs to actually utilize the table. And of course there are the pundits who speak askance of our fearless leaders. But who follows through with that?

Gone are the days of hard questions asked in repetition, phrased in infinitely different ways, unwavering until answers are given. Reporters will ask once and then move on to the next big, shiny thing ensuring that our short Pavlovian memories promptly forget the point as we are misdirected to look at the scandalous thing a celebrity has done. Much like in the Land of Oz, you can’t look behind the curtain.

Too often have things been stripped away from so many of the citizens, too long have we gone without, repressed, that when we stop to look around we have no idea where our rights have gone. I blinked and our work force is back to robber baron, company store mentality working conditions. Unions displaced by temporary workers and consultants. Medical benefits stripped down to the basics, prices out of reach, vacations a distant memory. Work life balance and leisure time are concepts of a generation long gone. Collective bargaining and thoughts of unions have become heresy and the utterance of even the words with the wrong intonation is the fastest route to a trouble maker label and a quick trip out the door, blacklisted. Homes lost to the greed of the few. Dreams crushed under the false accusation that you didn’t want it bad enough, because you are lazy. Food companies merging to form conglomerates of factory farms and chemistry experiments that slowly poison the population. Individuals are being shamed for believing the falsehood that the multitudes of chemically and genetically altered corn products are nutritious.

Nothing new in any of those statements. We have heard them all before. A little here, a little there. But who does anything? It used to be that the journalists would repeat a story, fanning the flames of unrest. But they are owned by the pigs selling you all the other lies. There is no journalism anymore. Just people reading copy and celebrating the latest bite of information that will distract us from reality. They purposefully misdirect our gaze from the truth and sell us fear and xenophobia.

 

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Changes in media control in the past 30 years

Besides, who reads newspapers? Who watches the news? Not much of a demand for that anymore. They have drugged us into complacency with reality TV and GMO carbs and we have become addicts clawing at our arms ripping our flesh demanding more of the poison that kills us.
Don’t like it? Step up and do something. It’s an election year people. Get out there and do some digging. All of us have the entire breadth of human knowledge available in the palm of our hands in the form of smart phones and tablets. Use them to educate yourself. Look to independent sources, for we can no longer trust the media to provide us with information. But above all, vote.