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Though I saw it all around
Never thought I could be affected
Thought that we'd be the last to go
It is so strange the way things turn

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Linkee-poo keep me safe, lie with me, stay beside me, don't go, don't you go

John le Carré on the art of fiction. (Grokked form Terri Windling)

Good news for mice! Scientist have bred a mouse that allows them to (with a drug) kill off cells that have stopped dividing, leading to 25% longer and healthier life. Unfortunately, it's not so easy in humans, and those cells may be protecting us from some cancers.

Buzz-kills! The CDC recommends that sexually active women who are not using birth control should avoid alcohol consumption. While scientifically a valid statement (as alcohol consumption while pregnant, especially in the early stages, can cause birth defects, not all of which are noticeable), slightly tone-deaf in delivery. So people are rightfully outraged. Also, it's a recommendation not a mandate. This is what the CDC does, "Hey, there's this health problem, how do we reduce morbidity and mortality?" And if you don't think this is a problem when I work in X-ray, you haven't had one lately. I've gotten pretty used to asking, "any chance of pregnancy, when was your last menstrual cycle?" I also know when and where to ask (especially if the patient is a minor with parents in the room). Why, because if you are pregnant and we X-ray you (I try to shield even for the most minor exams) it is exactly the wrong time for the fetus (x-ray exposure in the early weeks typically leads spontaneous abortion, although not always). If it's an abdominal exam, oh yea, I am much more strict about that (note there are times when we must, a doctor needs to sign off on those as they are taking responsibility).

While it seems a simple argument to add women to the registration for Selective Service (aka, the Draft), the arguments here are pretty subtle and long standing. There is a subtext of "if women are also drafted, there is less political support for continuing Selective Service" which is why this argument also occurred in the 80s. It was an attempt to abolish Selective Service. There is the subtext of equal rights, why shouldn't women also be considered for the draft? And there is the final contention over opening all combat roles to women. While it's an order, I bet you can't swing a cat in the Officers Club without hitting someone who vehemently disagrees with it. But seriously, it's time to either kill Selective Service, or make it mandatory for all citizens/residents aged 18 to 25.

And more news in the "it's everybody else's fault, except us" brand of conservative politics, a Congressional hearing on the Flint Water crisis/poisonings. Everybody but the people involved in forcing the change of water to the Flint River, or the process of imposing an Emergency Manager on local governments, will be there to take the heat.

With friends like these. Speaker Ryan agrees with the Black Caucus that Congress should update the Voting Rights Act to mend the gaping hole put in it by the Supreme Court. However, not enough that he'll pressure the committee chairman to release the legislation.

Yes, all the Sturm and Drang about Obamacare from the insurance industry is about getting leverage to blunt rules that are coming down the pike. Because they can't make as much money as they used to.

First stage, denial. Jeb! has to ask an audience to clap after he gave a "fiery" speech. That's gonna leave a mark.

And then there were nine. Oh Ricky, you went and lost that number. So much for my bet. And then he struggles to justify his endorsement of Rubio. And that shows just what is wrong with this election. There are no reasons on the Right for what they're doing, at least none they can admit in the open.

And this is exactly why the FBI released that video of the chase and death of LaVoy Finicum. Also, so much for the 4 still inside to get their wish of just being "let go".

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