en Real Fake News: Science Used As Propaganda <p><a href=""><em>Authored by Joe Jarvis via The Daily Bell,</em></a></p> <p><em><strong>Did you know that doctors and scientists can be corrupt or simply wrong?</strong></em></p> <p><em><strong><a href=""><img height="259" src="" width="487" /></a></strong></em></p> <p><strong>People seem to give doctors and scientists the benefit of the doubt </strong> when it comes to their findings and opinions on things like global warming, genetically modified organisms, pesticides, chemicals, and how unhealthy certain foods and habits are.</p> <p><strong>But like any other humans, scientists and doctors are, well, <em>human</em>. They can be misguided, confused, corrupt, and stubbornly opinionated.</strong></p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>According to <a href="">Natural News</a>, <strong>as many as 20,000 doctors once recommended smoking cigarettes to aid digestion.</strong></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>In 1940&rsquo;s Camel ran an ad campaign that claimed &ldquo;More Doctors Smoke Camels.&rdquo;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>They even handed out packs of Camels to doctors at a medical convention </strong>and then polled the doctors on their way out the door, asking what their favorite cigarette brand was, or what kind they had in their pocket at that moment.</p> </blockquote> <p>Unfortunately, <strong>money has corrupted industries like big pharma who pay doctors and scientists to take a position and prescribe particular drugs and treatment.</strong> Many peer-reviewed studies have predetermined outcomes which basically find the facts to fit their narrative. It is more a marketing ploy to publish in scientific and medical journals than proof of the actual findings.</p> <p><strong>Sugar was long considered fine to dump down children&rsquo;s throats because in the 1960&rsquo;s a <a href="">handful of scientists were paid off</a>.</strong></p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>The documents show that a trade group called the Sugar Research Foundation, known today as the Sugar Association, paid three Harvard scientists the equivalent of about $50,000 in today&rsquo;s dollars to publish a 1967 review of research on sugar, fat and heart disease.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>The studies used in the review were handpicked by the sugar group, and <a href="">the article,</a>&nbsp;which was published in the prestigious New England Journal of Medicine, minimized the link between sugar and heart health and cast aspersions on the role of saturated fat.</p> </blockquote> <p><strong>But even absent actual corruption, basic mistakes are being made in scientific conclusions.</strong></p> <p><u><strong>Correlation is not causation.</strong></u> This is a basic foundational tenet of science. Two things may be very strongly correlated, but that does not prove that one causes the other.</p> <p>According to Reason Magazine:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>When it comes to separating the wheat from the chaff of studies that are mediocre or just plain bad, Albert Einstein College of Medicine epidemiologist Geoffrey Kabat is a national treasure.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><em><strong>&ldquo;Most research findings are false or exaggerated, and the more dramatic the result, the less likely it is to be true,&rdquo; </strong></em>he declares in his excellent new book&nbsp;<em>Getting Risk Right.</em></p> </blockquote> <p>Kabat discusses how &ldquo;the dose makes the poison,&rdquo; in that saying something doubles your risk of a disease could actually be statistically irrelevant.</p> <p>For example, you may have heard that eating bacon increases the risk of colorectal cancer. Technically, this is true. If you eat two slices of bacon&nbsp;<em>every day of your life&nbsp;</em>the risk of colorectal cancer increases from 5 to 6 percent. That is not exactly the same risk as smoking cigarettes, which increases the risk of lung cancer by 20 to 50 times over.</p> <p><strong>And then, of course, you must consider the editorial bias. <em>You&rsquo;re Risking Your Life Eating Bacon</em> is more likely to get a click than&nbsp;<em>Everyday Bacon Eating Increases Cancer Risk by 1%.</em></strong></p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>Kabat suggests that the precautionary principle&ndash;&ldquo;better safe than sorry&rdquo;&ndash;is largely an ideological ploy to alarm the public into supporting advocates&rsquo; policy preferences.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>He also decries &ldquo;the simplistic notion that &lsquo;consensus among scientists&rsquo; is always correct.&rdquo;</strong> He notes that scientific consensus once held that ulcers were caused by spicy foods and stress instead of bacteria&hellip;</p> </blockquote> <p>Here&rsquo;s the thing, I like to be healthy, and I personally often follow the <em>better safe than sorry&nbsp;</em>principle. But it is a huge miscarriage of authority to push this view on others through fear. It is the idea of&nbsp;<em>I know better than these silly peasants&nbsp;</em>that unfortunately seems to permeate the scientific and medical communities.</p> <p><em><strong>Are GMOs, pesticides, and chemicals like BPA really as bad as they say? </strong></em>I personally avoid them, but I honestly haven&rsquo;t done enough of my own research to know for sure.Salt and fat have gone back and forth as being considered healthy</p> <p>Salt and fat have gone back and forth as being considered healthy then unhealthy, then healthy again by experts.</p> <p><strong>People look to doctors and scientists for guidance and too often are brainwashed with those individuals&rsquo; own biases and unsubstantiated opinions.</strong></p> <p>If an expert cannot or will not answer questions about their work, that is a red flag. When people talk about consensus among experts instead of the actual facts, that is another red flag.</p> <p><strong>There have been too many times in recent history when the experts, the scientists, and the doctors were willfully or mistakenly wrong.</strong></p> <p>Sometimes, yes, we must defer to experts, since it is simply impossible to research it all on your own. But that doesn&rsquo;t mean we should forgo the due diligence in critical thinking that goes along with it.</p> <p><strong>Fear sells.</strong> We are used to it in the media but don&rsquo;t usually expect it from doctors and scientists. <em><strong>But they are humans too, and just as likely to push their agenda instead of the truth.</strong></em></p> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_teaser" width="487" height="259" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> Albert Einstein College of Medicine American cuisine Bacon Cancer Charcuterie Corruption Food and drink Garde manger Geoffrey Kabat Global Warming Harvard Health Health Personal life Pork Smoked meat Sugar Sugar Association Sugar Research Foundation Thu, 27 Jul 2017 05:40:00 +0000 Tyler Durden 600555 at "Calexit" Referendum Question Is One Step Closer To Appearing On 2018 Ballot <p>A group that is trying to organize a vote on whether California should secede from the US has received permission to begin gathering signatures to force an independence referendum that, if successful, <strong>would amount to the first serious attempt at secession by a US state since the Civil War.</strong></p> <p>According to the <a href="">Sacramento Bee, </a><strong>California Attorney General Xavier Becerra issued an official ballot measure title and summary to the &quot;California Autonomy From Federal Government&quot; initiative, which can now start gathering signatures needed to include the referendum question - known informally as &quot;Calexit&quot; - on the ballot during the 2018 midterm elections.</strong></p> <p><a href=""><strong><img alt="" src="" style="width: 500px; height: 290px;" /></strong></a></p> <p>The group&rsquo;s proposal has been scaled back from an initially more aggressive version. The initiative wouldn&#39;t necessarily force California to exit the country, but could allow the state to become a &ldquo;fully functioning sovereign and autonomous nation&rdquo; within the US, according to the <a href="">Los Angeles Times. &nbsp;</a></p> <p>If successful, the vote would allow California Gov. Jerry Brown to <strong>&ldquo;form a commission to recommend avenues for California to pursue its independence and delete part of the state constitution that says it is an inseparable part of the U.S. The measure would also instruct the governor and California congressional delegation to negotiate more autonomy for the state,&rdquo;</strong> according to the <a href="">Bee.</a></p> <p><style type="text/css"> .mcclatchy-embed{position:relative;padding:40px 0 56.25%;height:0;overflow:hidden;max-width:100%}.mcclatchy-embed iframe{position:absolute;top:0;left:0;width:100%;height:100%}</style></p><p>As the <a href="">Bee </a>notes, an earlier, more aggressive measure that called for a formal break with the US was cancelled less than three months after it received permission to start gathering signatures &ndash; presumably because the group had trouble finding voters willing to affix their names to the movement. The new, scaled down effort is the second since President Donald Trump&rsquo;s upset victory in November to convince the state&rsquo;s leadership to demand more autonomy from Washington.</p> <p><strong>Backers of the plan now have 180 days to collect the more than 585,000 valid signatures needed for the initiative to go on the 2018 ballot.</strong></p> <p>Apparently, liberal, Hillary Clinton-loving Californians were so triggered by Trump&rsquo;s win that they immediately began fantasizing about breaking away from the US. According to an <a href="">Ipsos/Reuters poll </a>released <strong>back in January found that 1 in every 3 Californians (32%) said they would support a &quot;peaceful withdrawal from the union&rdquo; - a substantial increase from the 20% who favored such a withdrawal the last time a similar poll was conducted in 2014. </strong>Support for secession among Californians was also higher than the national average of 24%, the poll found.</p> <p>Californians are particularly triggered by Trump&#39;s promises to enforce immigration laws and repeal Obamacare. One Democrat consultant who was interviewed by Reuters in its story reporting the poll&rsquo;s findings said that &quot;many citizens believe it would be smarter to leave than fight.&quot;</p> <p>While California has a reputation as one of the most liberal states in the country, it does have its conservative pockets. In profile published last month, <a href="">the New York Times</a> spoke with residents of 13 Northern California counties that went for Trump during the election. <strong>Many decried what they called the &ldquo;tyranny&rdquo; of the state&rsquo;s liberal hegemony, which has effectively marginalized their votes for statewide and federal officials, other than their local US representatives.</strong></p> <p>If California successfully secedes, expect those counties to stage their own effort to break away from the rest of the state.<br />&nbsp;</p> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_teaser" width="1034" height="600" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> Donald Trump federal government New York Times Northern California Obamacare Partition and secession in California Politics Politics of California Reuters Yes California Thu, 27 Jul 2017 05:05:00 +0000 Tyler Durden 600564 at Paul Craig Roberts Warns "Armageddon Is Two-And-A-Half Minutes Away" <p><a href=""><em>Authored by Paul Craig Roberts,</em></a></p> <p><a href=""><img height="220" src="" width="387" /></a></p> <p><em><strong>Are you ready to die?</strong></em> You and I are going to die and not from old age, <strong>because our fellow Americans are so stupid, ignorant, and brainwashed that they believe the lies that are leading us to our certain destruction</strong>. This is <a href="">what the Atomic Scientists tell us</a>...</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p><strong>Each year &ldquo;the decision to move (or to leave in place) the minute hand of the&nbsp;Doomsday Clock&nbsp;is made by the Bulletin&rsquo;s Science and Security Board in consultation with its Board of Sponsors, which includes 15 Nobel laureates&rdquo;. </strong></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>In 1953 the Clock was at two minutes to midnight. In the worst years of the cold war it was at 3 minutes to midnight when, in 1984 it was recorded that &ldquo;US-Soviet relations reach their iciest point in decades. Dialogue between the two superpowers virtually stops. Every channel of communications has been constricted or shut down; every form of contact has been attenuated or cut off&hellip;&rdquo;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>And now, in 2017, it is apparent that channels of communication with Russia are being deliberately cut off - and the hands of the Doomsday Clock have been placed at just&nbsp;two-and-a-half minutes from midnight.</strong></p> </blockquote> <p>And they are right.</p> <p><strong>Can you comprehend the absurdity?</strong></p> <p><strong>President Trump is under full-scale attack</strong> from the military/security complex, the US presstitute media, the Democratic Party, and from many Republicans, such as Republican Senator from South Carolina Lindsey Graham and Republican Senator from Arizona John McCain <strong>simply because President Trump wants to reduce the dangerous tensions between the two major nuclear powers.</strong></p> <p><em>What explains the total lack of concern for their own lives on the part of the populations in South Carolina and Arizona who send to the Senate and keep sending to the Senate two morons determined to provoke war between the US and Russia?</em></p> <p>It should send shivers up your spine that you can ask this same question about all 50 states, and almost all congressional districts.</p> <p><strong>You can ask the same question about the bordello known as &ldquo;the American media.&rdquo; </strong>There will be no one alive to post or to read the headlines of the war that they are helping to promote.</p> <p>The United States and the rest of the world with it along with all life on earth are being sent to their graves by the total failure of American leadership.</p> <p><em><strong>What is wrong with Americans that they cannot understand that any &ldquo;leader&rdquo; who provokes war with a major nuclear power should be instantly institutionalized as criminally insane?</strong></em></p> <p><em>Why do Americans sit night after night in front of the TV absorbing lies that commit them beyond all doubt to their deaths?</em></p> <p><strong>America has failed itself and the world.</strong></p> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_teaser" width="387" height="220" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> Board of Sponsors Bulletin’s Science and Security Board Democratic Party Donald Trump Doomsday Doomsday Clock Fiction headlines International Republican Institute John McCain John McCain Lindsey Graham Minutes to Midnight Nuclear Power Politics Senate South Carolina United States Thu, 27 Jul 2017 04:30:00 +0000 Tyler Durden 600566 at Bankers Ditch 7-Figure Salaries To Climb Aboard The ICO "Rocketship" <p>In just a few short months, companies &ndash; many of dubious legitimacy &ndash; have raised more than a billion dollars through ICOs. Some of the better-hyped offerings in the field of 900 new coins that have been created this year managed to raise tens of millions of dollars in minutes.&nbsp; Investors, who were eager to throw money at the new coins, blindly hoping they would land on the next bitcoin or Ethereum.</p> <p>With all this money flying around, <strong>it&rsquo;s no small wonder that bankers in New York, Hong Kong and London are abandoning seven-figure salaries to try their luck in the nascent ICO industry, </strong>according to <a href="">Bloomberg. </a>Stories like this have become commonplace with every passing fintech trend, as bankers, fearing the technology&rsquo;s potential to disrupt the banking business and threaten their bonus pool, hoping to cash in on the next technology enabled &ldquo;revolution.&rdquo;</p> <p><a href=""><img alt="" src="" style="width: 500px; height: 412px;" /></a></p> <p>Richard Liu, a former dealmaker at Renaissance China, left the world of finance for the told <a href="">Bloomberg</a> <strong>he left the banking world behind for the chance to climb aboard a &ldquo;rocket ship&rdquo; &ndash; in reality a $50 million hedge fund that&rsquo;s invested in 20 ICOs this year, including Tezos, one of the most successful ICOs in the industry&rsquo;s brief history.</strong></p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>&ldquo;For Liu, who put together some of China&rsquo;s biggest tech deals in his old job, the chance to shape the nascent arena outweighs the dangers of a market crash or crackdown. Loosely akin to IPOs, ICOs have raised millions from investors hoping to get in early on the next bitcoin or ether, and their unchecked growth over the past year is such that they&rsquo;ve drawn comparisons to the first ill-fated dot-com boom. <strong>Yet with stratospheric bonuses largely a thing of the past, the allure of an incandescent new arena far from financial red-tape has proven irresistible to some.</strong></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>&lsquo;Traditional investment banks and VCs need to monitor this space closely, it could become very big,&rsquo;</strong> said the 30-year-old partner at $50 million hedge fund FBG Capital, which has backed about 20 ICOs. <strong>He&rsquo;s off to a quick start, getting in on this year&rsquo;s largest sale: Tezos, a smart contracts platform that raised $200 million to outstrip the average Hong Kong IPO size this year of around $31 million.</strong></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&lsquo;Unlike the traditional financial sector, there are no ceilings or barriers. There&rsquo;s so much to imagine,&rsquo; he said.&rdquo;</p> </blockquote> <p>Later in the piece, Liu rebutted <a href="">Bloomberg</a>&rsquo;s concerns about parallels between the ICO frenzy and the run-up to the dot-com crash, arguing that trying to pick successful offerings presents an opportunity to &ldquo;carve out a niche.&rdquo;</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>&ldquo;You want to be on a rocket ship,&rdquo; Liu said. &ldquo;If you join early, then every day you&rsquo;re making history.&rdquo;</p> </blockquote> <p>The <a href="">SEC&rsquo;s declaration </a>that all ICOs should be treated like securities for regulatory purposes is a groundbreaking ruling that will help weed out some of the industry&#39;s bad actor by bringing a degree of oversight to the market. The rule change will likely slow the launch of new ICOs, as serious companies figure out how to register their securities, while some of the frauds decide it&rsquo;s not worth the risk. &nbsp;</p> <p>Another trader who previously programmed trading algorithms at Bank of America plans to use an ICO to launch his own cryptoasset management firm. In an interview with Bloomberg, he described the ICO market in stereotypically lofty terms.</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>&ldquo;<strong>Justin Short, who created electronic trading algorithms for Bank of America Corp. before launching trading-related startup Nous, is preparing to launch his own sale of digital tokens to bankroll what he calls cryptoasset portfolio management. </strong>A former Wall Street floor trader, he likens the advent of ICOs to an episode half a billion years ago when many of the planet&rsquo;s life forms came into existence.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>&ldquo;It&rsquo;s a Cambrian explosion of ideas. But that means you have to put in your work to figure out which one is even likely to work,&rdquo;</strong> he said.&rdquo;</p> </blockquote> <p>Ron Chernesky, the owner of electronic trading platform InvestFeed and a former trader, is so optimistic about ICOs that he&rsquo;s using one to swap out equity-trading capabilities on his platform with cryptocurrency.</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p><strong>&ldquo;Interest in ICOs remains sky-high. Ron Chernesky started his career as a trader on Wall Street 10 years ago, first on a trading floor and then running trading platform InvestFeed Inc.</strong> He&rsquo;s now in the process of replacing U.S. equities trading on his platform with digital currency trading, and planned to conduct his own ICO to raise 28,000 ether -- worth roughly $6 million at current prices.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&ldquo;<strong>We&rsquo;re completely ditching the model that we&rsquo;ve been doing for the past three years and now we&rsquo;re looking at cryptocurrency,&rdquo;</strong> the 38-year-old said. &lsquo;This is long term for us, we see this as the new gateway to the millennial way of investing and where everything is going from here.&rsquo;&rdquo;</p> </blockquote> <p>One former Forex-trading architect at HSBC tried to illustrate exactly how different factors influence the value of an ICO using that most effective of descriptive devices, the sports metaphor.</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>&ldquo;Former HSBC forex-trading architect Hugh Madden, currently Chief Technology Officer of Hong Kong-based ANX International, this month helped raise about $18.7 million for cryptocurrency exchange OAX. He likens ICO-token ownership to a football club membership. <strong>You don&rsquo;t get special access but as the team gets better, more people become fans and the price goes up.</strong></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>When a football club &ldquo;builds more relationships with other clubs, gets more matches, and generally enjoys wider adoption, then more people want to be a part of it,&rdquo;</strong> the 40-year-old said. &ldquo;There is no limit to participants, but there is a limit to memberships that allow members to exert influence on the future direction of the club.&rdquo;</p> </blockquote> <p>Of course, as <a href="">Bloomberg</a> readily admits, valuing ICOs is an impossible task. Developers regularly stumble upon coding flaws in even some legitimate ICOs. Meanwhile, hackers have stolen tens of millions of dollars of investors&rsquo; money. Still, these flaws haven&rsquo;t stopped the market from eclipsing the value of early-stage venture capital funding raised so far this year, as starry-eyed investors, inspired by the newly minted legions of bitcoin millionaires, gamble in the hopes of landing a 1000x return.<br />&nbsp;</p> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_teaser" width="868" height="715" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> Algorithmic trading Alternative currencies Bank of America Bank of America Bitcoin Bitcoin Business China Cryptocurrencies electronic trading algorithms Eli Lilly and Company Fiction Finance Foreign exchange market Hong Kong HSBC Icos International Council of Onomastic Sciences Market Crash Money Reality Renaissance U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission Thu, 27 Jul 2017 03:55:00 +0000 Tyler Durden 600531 at Politics Of The Next 4 Years: Part 3 (What's An Independent To Do?) <p><a href=""><em>Authored by Mike Krieger via Liberty Blitzkrieg blog,</em></a></p> <p><a href=""><img alt="" src="" style="width: 369px; height: 169px;" /></a></p> <p>Before we get started, it&rsquo;s important for me to clarify where I&rsquo;m coming from politically. First, here&rsquo;s what I&rsquo;m not, as described in last year&rsquo;s piece,&nbsp;<a href="" rel="bookmark" title="Permanent Link to Thank You and Welcome New Readers – A Liberty Blitzkrieg Mission Statement">Thank You and Welcome New Readers &ndash; A Liberty Blitzkrieg Mission Statement:</a></p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p><strong><em>I am not a Democrat or a Republican. I do not consider myself a libertarian, progressive, socialist, anarchist, conservative, neoconservative or neoliberal. </em></strong></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong><em>I&rsquo;m just a 38 year old guy&nbsp;trying to figure it all out. </em></strong></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong><em>Naturally, this doesn&rsquo;t imply that there aren&rsquo;t things which I hold dear. I have a strong belief system based on key principles. It&rsquo;s just that I don&rsquo;t think it makes sense for me to self-label and become part of a tribe. The moment you self-label, is the moment you stop thinking for yourself. It&rsquo;s also the moment you stop listening. When you think you have all the answers,&nbsp;anyone&nbsp;who doesn&rsquo;t think exactly as you do&nbsp;on all topics is either stupid&nbsp;or &ldquo;paid opposition.&rdquo; &nbsp;I don&rsquo;t subscribe to this way of thinking.</em></strong></p> </blockquote> <p>If I had to describe my politics at the most macro level, I guess you could call me a decentralist. I believe the primary threat to human liberty, happiness and evolution is the concentration of power, whether it manifests in government or business.</p> <p>In today&rsquo;s America we&rsquo;ve seen the worst of both these things come together, as oligarchs and large corporations have used their money and influence to transform the country into an undemocratic, neo-feudal cesspool. The grotesque amount of centralized power that resides in Washington D.C. proved a very tempting and easily controlled target for modern day robber barons. <strong>The major threat we face today shouldn&rsquo;t be simplified into a soundbite that consists of simply attacking &ldquo;business&rdquo; or &ldquo;government&rdquo; in isolation. We need to understand and accept that concentrated power in both these areas has morphed into a unified attack force against the general public.</strong></p> <p>Two tweets I sent out yesterday summarized how I see our current situation:</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"><p dir="ltr" lang="en">I still don&#39;t understand why any of us put up with Washington D.C.</p> <p>All 50 states should secede from it and start over.</p> <p>&mdash; Michael Krieger (@LibertyBlitz) <a href="">July 25, 2017</a></p></blockquote> <script async src="//" charset="utf-8"></script><blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"><p dir="ltr" lang="en">The biggest threat is how centralized and powerful D.C. is.</p> <p>I don&#39;t want anyone, even someone I like, in charge of that.</p> <p>&mdash; Michael Krieger (@LibertyBlitz) <a href="">July 25, 2017</a></p></blockquote> <script async src="//" charset="utf-8"></script><p>For more on my thinking about how I&rsquo;d like to see community and government transform over the coming years, see my <a href="" rel="noopener" target="_blank">4-part series on decentralization</a> which I published earlier this month.</p> <p><strong>Unfortunately, I doubt my vision for decentralized political organization will be embraced any time soon.</strong> It&rsquo;s possible that events could unfold that might create that opportunity sooner than I expect, but for now I have to deal with the reality we have, and this reality consists of a highly centralized governing structure based in Washington D.C. Various political gangs to which I have no allegiance will ruthlessly compete to snatch control of this power, and then impose their views on 320 million people. I think this is an irrational and dangerous governing structure for a land as massive and diverse as the 50 states, but it is what it is.</p> <p>The past couple of posts have focused on how I see the next four years unfolding from a domestic political perspective. It&rsquo;s not what I want or don&rsquo;t want, but simply what I see happening.<em><strong> Since the likely progression is not one of political decentralization in the near-term, how will I function within the coming environment?</strong></em></p> <p>First, I&rsquo;m going to start with the things that matter most to me at this point in our country&rsquo;s history. I outlined some of these issues in my <a href="" rel="noopener" target="_blank">final thoughts article</a> ahead of the 2016 election, in which I discussed some overlap between what Trump and Sanders were saying:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p><strong><em>Rather than dwelling on the differences between these two populist movements (Sanders and Trump), let&rsquo;s consider some of the areas where they overlap.</em></strong></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><em>1.&nbsp;<strong>Trade</strong>&nbsp;&mdash; Opposition to NAFTA and current &ldquo;trade&rdquo; deals such as TPP, TTIP, and TISA have been central&nbsp;to both the Sanders and Trump campaigns.</em></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><em>2.&nbsp;<strong>War and militarism</strong>&nbsp;&mdash; Whether you believe Trump is sincere or not, opposition to Obama/Clinton interventionist overseas wars were key talking points for both Trump and Sanders.</em></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><em>3.&nbsp;<strong>The system is rigged</strong>&nbsp;&mdash; The painful&nbsp;acknowledgment&nbsp;that the U.S. economic system is a rigged scam that&nbsp;fails to reward hard work, and is more akin to a parasitic, predatory oligarchy with very limited social mobility,&nbsp;has been a key campaign theme for both Trump and Sanders. The economy is increasingly dominated by near-monoploy giants who relentlessly push for more power and more profits irrespective of the cost to society, whether that cost be war, poverty or social unrest.</em></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><em>4.&nbsp;<strong>Money in politics</strong>&nbsp;&mdash; The rigged economic system described above aggregates wealth into an increasingly small number of hands. Those hands then buy off politicians and rig the political process. A rigged economy and rigged political system perpetually feeds itself and endlessly grows at the expense of the public like a terminal cancer. Both Trump and Sanders emphasized this problem.</em></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><em>5.&nbsp;<strong>Rule of law is dead</strong>&nbsp;&mdash; Sanders focused on Wall Street bankers, while&nbsp;Trump focused on Hillary and her inner circle of cronies, but the overall point is the same. Rich and powerful oligarchs are above the law. We all know this, but Washington D.C. refuses to do anything about it.</em></p> </blockquote> <p>During the campaign, I received pressure from some readers to back Trump because he was saying some things I agreed with on issues I care about compared to Hillary Clinton, but I stood firm in opposition to both. Part of the reason I held my ground and refused to vote for either, was I didn&rsquo;t trust Trump&rsquo;s sincerity. Having grown up in New York City, I literally observed Trump from the time I was in diapers. I watched his activities for decades and also developed an understanding of the mindset of a Manhattan real estate developer. Yes, he was a political outsider, but this guys lives and breathes the FIRE (Finance, Insurance and Real Estate) sector. There was no way he would challenge the power of the more parasitic aspects of the U.S. economy in favor of the productive. Indeed, he hasn&rsquo;t.</p> <p>This doesn&rsquo;t mean I&rsquo;m looking for a &ldquo;perfect candidate&rdquo; as some people accused me of. Quite the contrary. I simply didn&rsquo;t trust Donald Trump as a person, and this is important going forward. <strong>Given my unconventional political views, the chances of a candidate coming along who I agree with on all the issues that matter to me is extraordinarily unlikely. </strong>This doesn&rsquo;t mean I need to sit out every single election for the rest of my life. Rather, if a candidate for President comes along who checks enough of my boxes and who I consider to be a relatively genuine person, I would consider throwing my support behind that candidate.</p> <p>That said, <u><strong>in the bigger picture it&rsquo;s extremely important that we acknowledge no single person no matter how genuine their intentions will be able to fundamentally put this country on a more sane path on their own.</strong></u> It is up to us to do that, through the little actions we take in our individual lives every day, as well as by articulating and spreading ideas of freedom, civil liberties and the rule of law (oligarchs must not be above the law).</p> <p><strong>Indeed, it&rsquo;s far more important to a functioning society that elite criminals receive punishment for their crimes versus jailing your average thief. </strong>The elite criminal certainly represents a far greater threat to any civilization than a corner drug dealer. <em><strong>Our current twisted society sees things in the exact opposite way, and therefore incentivizes rampant corporate pillaging. Until we change this, nothing will improve.</strong></em></p> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_teaser" width="369" height="169" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> American people of German descent Business Climate change skepticism and denial Donald Trump Donald Trump Donald Trump sexual misconduct allegations International reactions to the United States presidential election New York City Politics Politics of the United States Real estate Reality The Apprentice United States Washington D.C. WWE Hall of Fame Thu, 27 Jul 2017 03:30:00 +0000 Tyler Durden 600559 at The Best-Paid U.S. Jobs Requiring No Bachelor's Degree <p>If you're looking for&nbsp;<a href="" target="_blank">a well-paid job</a>&nbsp;but you <strong>don't have the money, time and sheer patience</strong> required to complete a four-year bachelor degree, <strong>do not fear! </strong></p> <p><a href="" title="Infographic: The Best-Paid U.S. Jobs Requiring No Bachelor's Degree | Statista"><img src="" alt="Infographic: The Best-Paid U.S. Jobs Requiring No Bachelor's Degree | Statista" width="600" height="428" /></a> </p> <p><em>You will find more statistics at <a href="">Statista</a></em></p> <p><a href="">As Statista's Nial McCarthy points out,</a> according to&nbsp;<a href="" target="_blank">Bureau of Labor Statistics data</a>, plenty of U.S. jobs require an associate degree (usually taking two years), a postsecondary nondegree certificate or a high-school diploma. </p> <p><strong>Air-traffic controller offers the highest wages without&nbsp;<a href="" target="_blank">a bachelor degree</a>&nbsp;with the median annual salary coming to $122,410.</strong> Prospective applicants should keep in mind that the job still requires an associate degree. </p> <p><strong>Even though nuclear-power reactor operator sounds like a job requiring extensive university qualifications, it actually only requires a high-school diploma or equivalent.</strong> It has a very lucrative median salary of $91,170 a year.</p> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_teaser" width="743" height="388" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> Academic degrees Associate degree Bachelor's degree Bureau of Labor Statistics Diploma Education Education Thu, 27 Jul 2017 03:05:00 +0000 Tyler Durden 600558 at YSU Snowflakes Outraged: Late-Night Chicken Is Homophobic <p><a href=""><em>Authored by Mitchell Gunter via,</em></a></p> <p><strong>A petition is demanding that Youngstown State University the Chick-fil-A on campus,</strong> saying access to late-night chicken<em><strong> &ldquo;adds to the negative experience of LGBT students.&rdquo;</strong></em></p> <p><strong>Noting that the Chick-fil-A is &ldquo;the only place to get food in the evenings,&rdquo;</strong> the <a href=""> petition</a> complains that while the restaurant chain has apologized for &ldquo;statements by its founders regarding members of the LGBT community,&rdquo; the business &ldquo;is still donating money to anti-LGBT organizations.&rdquo;</p> <p><a href=""><img height="315" src="" width="600" /></a></p> <p><em><strong>&ldquo;Youngstown State has a very low campus pride rating as it is,&rdquo; </strong></em>the petition notes, observing that <a href="">Youngstown State has a three star rating</a>.</p> <p>The&nbsp;<a href="">Campus Pride Index</a> (CPI), a metric that purports to rate LGBTQ campus life, describes itself on its&nbsp;<a href="">website</a> as &ldquo;a vital tool for assisting campuses in learning ways to improve their LGBTQ campus life and ultimately shape the educational experience to be more inclusive, welcoming and respectful of LGBTQ and ally people.&rdquo;</p> <p>According to the petition, the university offers &ldquo;little [sic] accommodations for transgender students when it comes to getting their names changed in the system or living in appropriate dorms, and the only LGBT group on campus gets almost no visibility.&rdquo;</p> <p><strong>Worse still, from the petitioner&rsquo;s perspective, is the fact that administrators have in the past &ldquo;allowed anti-LGBT speakers on campus and did nothing about it when students complained,&rdquo;</strong> though the petition does not specify what the school should have done to mollify its LGBT community in those cases.</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>&ldquo;The fact that the only restaurant they have open during the evenings is a notoriously anti-LGBT restaurant only adds to the negative experience of LGBT students on campus,&rdquo; the petition concludes.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>&ldquo;Obviously, replacing Chick-fil-A would not change the company&rsquo;s views or anything, but it would be an act of solidarity for the campus&#39;s LGBT students.&rdquo;</strong></p> </blockquote> <p>Emmett Ray, the petition&rsquo;s author, explained that the anti-LGBT speakers referenced in the petition were &ldquo;preachers with big signs condemning LGBT people,&rdquo; and that he <strong>wished the university would &ldquo;actually have security kick them out when people report them.&rdquo;</strong></p> <p>Ray told <em>Campus Reform</em> that he wants Chick-Fil-A to be <strong>replaced &ldquo;because Chick-fil-A is notoriously run by homophobes,&rdquo; </strong>adding, &ldquo;my goal with the petition was more to start a discussion than actually get Chick-fil-A closed.&rdquo;</p> <p>Several individuals voiced their support in comments, including at least one faculty member.</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>&ldquo;Time for these people grow up and accept what is and move forward living life and stop hating and spread more love,&rdquo; one&nbsp;<a href="">said</a>, while another&nbsp;<a href="">asserted</a> that, &ldquo;The choice of Chick-fil-a by Pres. Tressel to come to YSU with Chartwells is symbolic of a culture of indifference towards minority communities.&rdquo;</p> </blockquote> <p><strong>Heather Lorimer, an&nbsp;<a href="">Associate Professor</a> in Genetics at YSU,&nbsp;<a href="">voiced her support</a>, as well.</strong></p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>&ldquo;I am a professor at YSU. I have not set foot up there since they became Chick-fil-A,&rdquo; Lorimer stated, lamenting that, &ldquo;A long time ago it used to be a respectable place where you could take an invited speaker out to lunch and even have table service. We now have no such place and I will not support Fried Food for Homophobes, which is what I think of Chick-fil-A.&rdquo;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&ldquo;Chick-fil-a is well known for its CEO&#39;s bigotry,&rdquo; Professor Lorimer told <em>Campus Reform</em>, reiterating that &ldquo;Since it has been Chick-fil-A I have not set a foot in it.&rdquo;</p> </blockquote> <p><strong>Other professed students mocked the petition via Twitter.</strong></p> <p>One user&nbsp;<a href="">scoffed</a> that the &ldquo;YSU Chick-fil-A petition has to be the worst thing I&#39;ve ever read,&rdquo; while another&nbsp;<a href="">tweeted</a>, &ldquo;So there&#39;s a petition rn to get rid the chic-fil-a on ysu campus bc the owners dont like gay people. They just want to ruin it for everyone.&rdquo;</p> <p><em><strong>&ldquo;Im gonna start a petition to close every Whole Foods if i lose the YSU Chick-fil-a,&rdquo; </strong></em>a third user&nbsp;<a href="">declared</a>.</p> <p><em><strong>&ldquo;You might be woke,&rdquo; YSU alum Chelsea Marrie &nbsp;mockingly <a href="">tweeted</a>, &ldquo;but are you &lsquo;having a chick fil a on campus is literally homophobic so I&rsquo;m starting a petition to remove it,&rsquo; woke?&rdquo;</strong></em></p> <p>*&nbsp; *&nbsp; *</p> <p><strong>UPDATE:</strong> A spokesperson for YSU provided a statement to&nbsp;<em>Campus Reform</em> indicating that<strong> the school has no plans to remove Chick-fil-A, but is willing to engage in a dialogue on the issue.</strong></p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>&quot;The Chick-fil-A brand is pervasive on college and university campuses throughout the nation and is an extremely popular choice for our students at YSU, as well,&quot; the statement began, adding, &quot;As part of the YSU Culture of Community initiative, the university recently formed a new Inclusion and Awareness Committee to help us better appreciate our diversity and to help us work together to overcome and prevent societal divisions. We invite those with concerns about Chick-fil-A to join in Committee discussions and participate in efforts to promote and nurture respect and to develop a campus community where everyone feels safe and secure.&quot;</p> </blockquote> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_teaser" width="959" height="504" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> Campus Pride Campus Pride Chick-fil-A CPI Education Education Inclusion and Awareness Committee LGBT Mahoning County, Ohio Twitter Twitter Youngstown State University Youngstown State University Thu, 27 Jul 2017 02:40:00 +0000 Tyler Durden 600557 at How The Military Became The Largest Employer of Transgender Americans <p><em>By <a href="">Priceonomics</a></em></p> <p>Why did Lily Kidd join the Marines?</p> <p>Ask her about it now and she offers a variety of answers. She needed to escape an unaccepting family. She wanted to experience life outside of Alabama. She was eager for a physical challenge (&ldquo;I don&rsquo;t go half in on anything,&rdquo; she says).</p> <p>But she also joined the United States Marine Corps because, as a twenty-year-old living in the Deep South with a fiancé, Lily Kidd was still presenting herself to the world as a man.</p> <p>&ldquo;When you&rsquo;re growing up as a boy, feminine traits are pushed away,&rdquo; explains Kidd, a transgender woman who is now 28 and lives in San Diego. &ldquo;The Marine Corps&mdash;that&rsquo;s the ultimate way to say, &lsquo;hey, you know what, I&rsquo;ve got nothing to do with that stuff.&rsquo;&rdquo;&nbsp;</p> <p>Last June, the Department of Defense&nbsp;<a href="">announced</a> that transgender men and women could no longer be discharged from the military on the basis of their gender identity. While the reform arrived too late for Kidd, who was kicked out of the Marines in 2014 after coming out as trans in her seventh year of service, the shift in policy has brought new public attention to the singular challenges (and for many, the very existence) of transgender service members.</p> <p>But Kidd&rsquo;s experience is not unique, nor even particularly rare. While media coverage of high profile trans service members like&nbsp;<a href="">Chelsea Manning</a> and&nbsp;<a href="">Kristin Beck</a> often presents the stories of transgender troops as novel&mdash;a singular juxtaposition of gender nonconformity within institutions that prize conformity above all else&mdash;they are anything but.</p> <p>In fact, the available evidence suggests that transgender Americans serve at rates well above the national average. Though the data is sparse, studies estimate that trans men and women are anywhere from two- to five-times more likely to join the military as their cisgender (nontrans) counterparts. For all its perceived conservatism and raging heteronormativity, the United States Armed Forces is almost certainly the largest employer of transgender people in this country.&nbsp;</p> <p>Trans service members and veterans offer a variety of explanations for this disparity. For some, the military uniform functions as gender camouflage&mdash;a way to forestall uncomfortable questions from friends, family, or spouses. For others, joining the armed forces offers financial security and community to a group that is disproportionately <a href="">denied</a>&nbsp;<a href="">both</a>. For Lily Kidd, both aspects motivated her decision to serve.</p> <p>As both a hiding place and a safety net, the military has become an unlikely refuge for thousands of transgender Americans.</p> <p><strong>Rough Estimates&nbsp;</strong></p> <p>You can tell a lot about a society based on the data it collects.</p> <p>No branch of the United States military gathers statistics about its transgender service members because, up until June of this year, they did not officially exist.</p> <p>Likewise, estimates of the American transgender population are notoriously unreliable. The U.S. Census Bureau doesn&rsquo;t ask about transgender identity, though as Mona Chalabi writes at <a href="">FiveThirtyEight</a>, the results probably wouldn&rsquo;t be reliable if they did. &ldquo;Transgender&rdquo; has no universally agreed upon definition, and many respondents might be reluctant to honestly answer a question about it from a federal agency. The surveys that do exist tend to focus on particular geographic areas or only target the LGBT population.</p> <p>Still, what rough estimates there are suggest that transgender people are overrepresented in the military. Perhaps dramatically so.</p> <p>The most prominent of these estimates comes from the <a href="">Williams Institute</a>, an LGBT-focused think tank based out of UCLA. In a report from 2014, authors Gary Gates and Jody Herman <a href="">estimate</a> that approximately 15,500 transgender men and women are serving and that an additional 134,300 trans Americans are veterans. Given a national population of 700,000 (another rough estimate), this suggests that over 1-in-5 (or 21.4%) of all openly transgender Americans are in the military or have served at one point.</p> <p>Compare this to the average adult American service rate of 10.4%. Transgender Americans, in other words, are estimated to be twice as likely to join the military.</p> <p><img height="516" src="" width="600" /></p> <p><em>&ldquo;Assigned Male at Birth&quot; refers to trans women along with all gender nonconforming people whose<br />assigned gender at birth was male. Data source: Williams Institute. Chart: Priceonomics</em></p> <p>According to the Gates and Herman, the disparity is true of both transgender men and women. Trans people assigned female at birth were estimated to be nearly three times as likely to serve as the average adult woman, while trans people assigned male at birth were 1.6 times as likely to serve as the average man.</p> <p>The Williams report estimates have been <a href="">criticized</a> on methodological grounds, so the figures should be taken with a grain of salt. But it does provide one piece of evidence about a larger trend. And there are others.</p> <p>In 2013, a team of epidemiologists at the Veterans Health Administration published a study on the prevalence of &ldquo;gender identity disorder&rdquo; (a classification since abandoned by the American Psychiatric Association) among the millions of veterans within the VHA system.</p> <p>After poring over hundreds of thousands of health records from between 2000 and 2011, the researchers found that roughly 23 out of every 100,000 patients in the VHA were diagnosed with GID. That is over five times higher than the total population rate of 4.3 per 100,000.</p> <p>John Blosnich, the lead author on the paper, acknowledges that using GID diagnosis codes is a &ldquo;very flawed way&rdquo; to identify transgender vets.</p> <p>&ldquo;If you can imagine, a trans person comes into the V.A. or any sort of medical center with a broken arm, there would be a [record] for a broken arm, but there wouldn&rsquo;t be an ID code for Gender Identity Disorder,&rdquo; he explains. &ldquo;So it&rsquo;s probably an underestimate, if anything.&rdquo;</p> <p>Like the estimates provided in the the Williams Institute, the VHA report provides an imprecise statistic. But taken together, they point to the same broader conclusion.</p> <p>&ldquo;I think it&rsquo;s pretty apparent that, yes, trans people are more likely to serve,&rdquo; says Jake Eleazer, a doctoral student at the University of Louisville who is writing his counseling psychology dissertation on the experience of transgender service members. Eleazer is also a captain in the Kentucky Army National Guard, a board member with the LGBT service member advocacy group, <a href="">SPART*A</a>, and a transgender man.</p> <p>&ldquo;But then it does lead to the question,&rdquo; says Eleazer. &ldquo;Why are trans people more likely to serve?&rdquo;</p> <p><strong>A Flight to What?</strong></p> <p>In 1988, George R. Brown, a psychiatrist in the Air Force, published an <a href=";*%7Ehmac=a96ddda8ef551206da1e28e59530ae4b232b403cc7bee0e3881b09a7110ff319">article</a> in Archives of Sexual Behavior, in which he described his evaluation of eleven &ldquo;male gender dysphorics&rdquo; (transgender women) who were then serving, or had recently served, in the military. After reviewing each case, Brown proposed a unifying theory for why trans women might be disproportionately drawn to the armed forces.</p> <p>A young transgender woman who is trying to deny her gender identity, he wrote, may join the military as a way of &ldquo;purging his feminine self [sic].&rdquo;</p> <p>Or, as the VHA&rsquo;s John Blosnich paraphrases the argument: &ldquo;If you&rsquo;re doubting how &lsquo;manly&rsquo; you are, what&rsquo;s manlier than driving a tank and blowing stuff up?&rdquo;</p> <p>In the intervening years, Brown&rsquo;s &ldquo;flight to hypermasculinity&rdquo; theory has become one of the most common explanations for why transgender people might be overrepresented in the military. Extended to both men and women, the simple version goes something like this: transgender women join the military to suppress who they really are, while transgender men do so to express who they really are.</p> <p>But according to Jake Eleazer, the 31-year-old National Guard captain, that explanation does not square with his experience.</p> <p>&ldquo;I think it&rsquo;s a little bit more nuanced than &lsquo;people are working through their issues,&rsquo;&rdquo; he says.</p> <p><a href=",_I%27d_Join_the_Navy_-_Google_Art_Project.jpg"><img height="910" src="" width="600" /></a></p> <p><em>A recruiting advertisement from 1917. Gender has always been &quot;a common theme in the way<br />that we work on bringing folks into the service,&quot; says Jake Eleazer.</em></p> <p>Since joining the Guard a decade ago, Eleazer says he kept serving despite his gender identity, not because of it. Over the last ten years, he says he has led a &ldquo;double life&rdquo; which, not surprisingly, has made things more difficult, not easier.</p> <p>The constant need for evasion and the ever present threat of discovery was exhausting, he says. Because he could not talk about his personal life, it was difficult to make or maintain close relationships. When his voice started to drop once he started hormone replacement therapy, he had to chalk it up to a persistent cough until he switched units.</p> <p>Sometimes his fellow soldiers would use &ldquo;he,&rdquo; &ldquo;his,&rdquo; and &ldquo;sir,&rdquo; befitting his gender identity, while others would say &ldquo;she,&rdquo; &ldquo;her,&rdquo; and &ldquo;ma&rsquo;am,&rdquo; consistent with his designation within the Army. Eleazer was never quite sure when a correction was in order.</p> <p>The ambiguity surrounding Eleazer&rsquo;s gender became a running joke of sorts between him and his fellow drill instructors&mdash;although nobody would ever acknowledge the underlying premise of the humor. Whenever a new class of soldiers arrived on base, one would invariably refer to Eleazer as &ldquo;sir,&rdquo; at which point the other instructors would swoop in &ldquo;like you&rsquo;ve seen in Full Metal Jacket&rdquo; and give the poor soldier hell for using the &ldquo;wrong&rdquo; pronoun.</p> <p>For all the anxiety and awkwardness, why has Eleazer stuck with the National Guard for a decade? The question takes on new significance for him now as he writes his dissertation asking the same thing of other service members.</p> <p>Personally, Eleazer says he was drawn to the Guard for the simple reason that he enjoys physical work that gets him outside.</p> <p>&ldquo;Maybe you could say that that&rsquo;s a masculine thing,&rdquo; he says. &ldquo;[But] I know plenty of cisgender female soldiers who would roll their eyes at [the] assertion that their military service somehow made them more masculine or more manly.&rdquo;&nbsp;</p> <p>Eleazer is finding that, contrary to Brown&rsquo;s flight to hypermasculinity theory, trans service members join the military for the same reasons that many Americans do. These reasons include financial and health benefits, assistance going to college, and a sense of kinship.&nbsp;</p> <p>&ldquo;We see a lot of people who come into the military because they don&rsquo;t feel like they have a lot of other stable options,&rdquo; says Eleazer. &ldquo;[In the military] you know you&rsquo;re going to have a roof over your head and food in your belly.&rdquo;</p> <p>According to the <a href="">Center for American Progress</a>, anywhere from one- to two-thirds of homeless youth are gay or transgender. A <a href="">survey</a> from 2009 found that transgender people faced unemployment rates twice the national average. Trans people also <a href="">report</a> much higher rates of physical and sexual assault and are <a href="">believed</a> to be ten-times more likely to attempt suicide.&nbsp;</p> <p>Given all that, says Eleazer, &ldquo;the idea of joining a community like the military might be very appealing.&rdquo;</p> <p>Whether the institution is perceived as &ldquo;hypermasculine&rdquo; or not may be beside the point. &nbsp;</p> <p><strong>An Intolerant Meritocracy</strong></p> <p>But it wasn&rsquo;t just material benefits that attracted Staff Sergeant Cathrine Joy Schmid to the army when she was 20 years old.</p> <p>For Schmid, who is now 32, the military was one of a long list of possible &ldquo;solutions&rdquo; that she hoped would rid her of the unshakable, lifelong conviction that she was a woman.</p> <p>&ldquo;This is why I got married almost right out of high school, why I tried to go to Bible college, and also why I joined the Army,&rdquo; she says in an email exchange. Schmid grew up in a deeply religious household where transgender identity was equated with homosexuality and homosexuality with evil.</p> <p>As George R. Brown wrote in 1988, &ldquo;the military places a high premium on virility, stoicism, machismo, assertiveness, and all that is, by definition, hypermasculine.&rdquo; Schmid was drawn to all of this.</p> <p>&ldquo;I thought that dedicating myself to God, Country, and good old-fashioned heterosexual romance would make me into the man I was trying so hard to convince myself I was,&rdquo; she says.</p> <p>But like religious instruction and marriage, joining the Army failed to have the desired effect. And when it did, she began to consider more dire remedies.</p> <p>For years afterward, Schmid says she experienced a series of suicidal episodes. The first came &nbsp;in 2008, three years after joining, when Schmid was stationed in Germany with her wife and the first of the two daughters they would have together. (&ldquo;I thought fatherhood would cure me too,&rdquo; she says.) After her wife discovered a duffel bag of women&rsquo;s clothing and makeup that Schmid had secretly stashed away, Schmid says she fell into a deep depression.</p> <p>&ldquo;When I found myself staring at my pistol at the firing range, seriously considering pointing it at myself, I realized how bad things really were,&rdquo; she says.</p> <p>Things carried on in this way until 2014, when, after returning home from Iraq, Schmid came very close to jumping off a bridge and was hospitalized for three weeks. A month later, she wrote a memo to her commanding officers.&nbsp;</p> <p>&ldquo;I have been diagnosed with Gender Dysphoria,&rdquo; she wrote. &ldquo;I fully understand the consequences of this diagnosis, that is, that it could be grounds for separation from military service. Again this is not my desire, as fulfilling my military duties and responsibilities are of paramount importance.&rdquo;</p> <p>Fortunately for Schmid, her commander agreed. Commanders are often given discretion over which &ldquo;causes for rejection&rdquo; are worth acting upon, and Schmid was a capable intelligence analyst.</p> <p>&ldquo;The good thing about the Army is that while it may be conservative, intolerant, and restrictive, it&rsquo;s also the closest thing to a functioning meritocracy that I&rsquo;ve ever seen,&rdquo; she says. &ldquo;And transgender people can do the job.&rdquo;</p> <p>Schmid has since transferred to a new unit where her fellow soldiers treat and address her as a woman. In the meantime, she and her wife divorced, though Schmid says she maintains a good relationship with her kids.</p> <p>And despite joining the &ldquo;hypermasculine&rdquo; military as an act of self-deception&mdash;one that inevitably failed&mdash;she remains loyal to the institution.</p> <p><strong>&ldquo;They Don&rsquo;t Hunt Trans People&rdquo;</strong></p> <p>But for many service members, the choice to join the military is not exclusively about denying one&rsquo;s gender identity or solely motivated by the offer of material and social support.</p> <p>Both certainly played a role in Lily Kidd&rsquo;s decision to join the Marine Corps. But the main appeal of serving was that it provided structure and an identity to latch onto until she was in a better position to provide both for herself.</p> <p>&ldquo;It wasn&rsquo;t a conscious thought for me, like &lsquo;oh, I need to get rid of this trans thing,&rsquo;&rdquo; she says. &ldquo;It was like, &lsquo;hey, you know, I could do this for four to eight years, [go to] college, [and] get my life in order.&rdquo;</p> <p>Despite the Marine Corps&rsquo; inherent conservatism, it also felt like a reasonably safe place to be a confused twenty-year-old. &ldquo;They don&rsquo;t hunt trans people,&rdquo; she says. &ldquo;Once you&rsquo;re through the initial bootcamp questioning and stuff like that, they don&rsquo;t ever ask you again.&rdquo;</p> <p>This was often more than could be said of civilian life.</p> <p>Carla Lewis, a 45 year old trans woman living in Nashville, was also drawn to service for an array of complex reasons that do not fit tidily into one theory or another.&nbsp;</p> <p><a href=";q=;source=gmail&amp;ust=1475167771909000&amp;usg=AFQjCNFZ9yE0e3Ctl_VdUJd1Ukoi87968g"><img height="900" src="" width="600" /></a></p> <p><em>Carla Lewis now works as a software developer in Nashville.</em></p> <p>From as early as eight years old, Lewis says she was certain of two things: she wanted to be an astronaut, and she was a woman. Casting her lot with the nerd crowd as a teenager allowed her to pursue the first realization while avoiding the second. Her fondest childhood memory was the weekend she spent at the Marshall Space Flight Center. In high school, she joined the civil air patrol&mdash;something akin to the boy scouts for the aeronautically inclined.&nbsp;</p> <p>At the same time, she says she always felt more comfortable wearing women&rsquo;s clothing and makeup.</p> <p>&ldquo;The only [trans people] that I had ever seen was like on Jerry Springer and Sally Jessy Raphael,&rdquo; she says. &ldquo;And I didn&rsquo;t necessarily think that applied to me.&rdquo;</p> <p>Ever the bookworm, Lewis scoured the libraries at her school, in her town, at the local law school. But evidently, there were no books on transgender identity to be found in rural Arkansas in the 1980s.</p> <p>&ldquo;For all intents and purposes, I thought that I was the only person like me,&rdquo; says Lewis.</p> <p>After struggling in her first year of college, Lewis decided that the U.S. Air Force might be a good place for a misfit with a penchant for rockets.&nbsp;</p> <p>Like Kidd, Carla Lewis was drawn to the military because it was far easier to call herself an &ldquo;airman&rdquo; or a &ldquo;Marine&rdquo; than a woman. The service provided an opportunity to postpone a reckoning.</p> <p><strong>&ldquo;Condition Not a Disability&rdquo;&nbsp;</strong></p> <p>For Lily Kidd, that reckoning came after seven years of distinguished service.</p> <p>After serving over two years overseas, being promoted to sergeant, and receiving an award for excellence in the field of information and communication technology, Lily Kidd decided to come out as transgender.</p> <p>She realized that she had to make a change while sitting on a base in Afghanistan.</p> <p>As she watched fellow Marines lose friends, family members, and spouses to infidelity and the emotional wear and tear of prolonged absence, she was overcome with the sense that life was passing her by.</p> <p>&ldquo;I thought, what do I have that I&rsquo;m holding back?&rdquo;</p> <p>Upon returning to Camp Pendleton in southern California, she told her commanding officer that she was trans and asked permission to pursue transition.</p> <p>As in the case of Cathrine Schmid, Kidd&rsquo;s commanding officer seemed content to ignore Kidd&rsquo;s gender as long as her &ldquo;condition&rdquo; did not affect her performance. Kidd started hormone replacement therapy. A year and a half passed. But as she began to change physically, Kidd says she lost friends. Other Marines began posting mocking and harassing posts on social media.</p> <p>&ldquo;I would go to somewhere on base and everybody was staring at me and taking pictures,&rdquo; she recalls.</p> <p>When word finally reached the Sergeant Major of her unit, he gave Kidd the choice to &ldquo;stop doing this thing&rdquo; or leave. According to Kidd, this was no choice. The following month, she received a discharge for a &ldquo;Condition Not a Disability,&rdquo; a <a href="">classification</a> that lists &ldquo;Sexual Gender and Identity Disorders&rdquo; alongside drug dependence and bedwetting as justifiable reasons for dismissal.</p> <p>Carla Lewis&rsquo; military career was much shorter.</p> <p>After completing basic training and excelling in technical school, Lewis was shipped off to the White Sand Missile Range in New Mexico. She says she opted for the facility because of its proximity to Roswell, of UFO-sighting lore.</p> <p>Unfortunately for Lewis, the White Sands placement also required an extensive background check in order to obtain the necessary security clearance. While in training school, Lewis had met with a counselor and discussed her gender identity. Worried that this discussion would come up in the background check, she refused to sign her security clearance application.</p> <h1><a href=""><img height="580" src="" width="600" /></a></h1> <p><em>Carla Lewis with her father. Prior to coming out, Lewis went by Justin.</em></p> <p>Thus ended what Lewis refers to as her &ldquo;illustrious 16 month career.&rdquo;</p> <p>The years that followed their respective discharges were not easy for either Kidd or Lewis.</p> <p>For months afterward, Kidd says she struggled to get out of bed in the morning. She also struggled to make ends meet or to pay for her hormone doses. She took odd jobs until finally she found work at a satellite communications company. When Defense Secretary Ash Carter announced the change in policy last June, Kidd says she responded with a mix of emotions.</p> <p>&ldquo;I&rsquo;m happy that nobody else has to go through what I went through,&rdquo; she says. In her former Marine Corps company of nearly 200, Kidd says she can think of five who have since come out as trans. She had not been alone after all.</p> <p>&ldquo;But [the policy change] doesn&rsquo;t do anything for me,&rdquo; she says. &ldquo;It&rsquo;s not going to give me my career back.&rdquo;</p> <p>Carla Lewis took much longer to find her place in the world after her discharge.</p> <p>Though she had to explain the reason for her abrupt departure from the Air Force to her family, (&ldquo;my father surprised me and said, &lsquo;I wish I had known this, we could have taken you to Las Vegas and you could have become a showgirl,&rsquo;&rdquo; says Lewis), she kept her gender identity a secret from everyone else for nearly another decade. In 1999, Lewis&rsquo; wife left with the children, and Lewis attempted suicide.&nbsp;</p> <p>But now, back in school and working as a software developer for a medical technology company in Nashville, Lewis says she has it better than most transgender women in America.</p> <p>And for all the trauma she experienced as a result of Air Force policy, she says she does not hold a grudge against the institution. When the Department of Defense announced its policy change last June, she says that she was thrilled that so many others could now serve.</p> <p>&ldquo;I already knew that there were trans people serving in the closet who were extremely talented, yet they couldn&rsquo;t be who they really were,&rdquo; she says. &ldquo;When you spend your time being told that honesty is a virtue, yet you&rsquo;re required to lie about something so deeply personal, I feel like you rob the people around you of the gifts that you have to give.&rdquo;</p> <p>&ldquo;Truthfully, if I weren&rsquo;t too old,&rdquo; she says, &ldquo;I would join again.&rdquo;</p> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_teaser" width="1024" height="575" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> Afghanistan Air Force American Psychiatric Association army Census Bureau Center for American Progress communication technology Department of Defense Gender Gender studies Gender variance Genderqueer Germany Iraq Las Vegas LGBT LGBT Marshall Space Flight Center Mexico National Guard satellite communications Social Issues Southern California SPART Trans woman Transgender Transgender health care Transgender inequality U.S. Census Bureau UCLA Unemployment United States Marine Corps University of Louisville US Air Force Veterans Health Administration Williams Institute Thu, 27 Jul 2017 01:48:07 +0000 Tyler Durden 600561 at Winning: U.S. Crushes All Other Countries In Latest Obesity Study <p>When President Trump promised last fall that under a Trump administration America would "would win so much you'll get tired of winning," we suspect this is not what he had in mind.&nbsp; According to the latest international obesity study from the <a href=";utm_medium=email&amp;utm_content=Read%20more...&amp;utm_campaign=2nd%20Health%20Update%202017&amp;utm_term=demo">Organization For Economic Co-operation and Development</a> (OECD), America is by far the fattest nation in the world with just over 38% of the adult population considered 'obese.'</p> <p><a href=" - Obese 1.JPG"><img src="" style="width: 600px; height: 729px;" /></a></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Here are some stats from the OECD's latest study courtesy of the <a href="">Washington Examiner</a>:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p>-&nbsp; <strong>In 2015, an estimated 603.7 million adults and 107.7 million children worldwide were obese. That represents about 12 percent of all adults and 5 percent of all children.</strong></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>-&nbsp; The <strong>prevalence of obesity doubled in 73 countries between 1980 and 2015</strong> and continuously increased in most of the other countries.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>-&nbsp; <strong>China and India had the highest number of obese children.</strong> China and the U.S. had the highest number of obese adults.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>-&nbsp; Excess body weight accounted for about 4 million deaths — or 7.1 percent of all deaths — in 2015.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>-&nbsp; Almost 70 percent of deaths related to a high BMI were due to cardiovascular disease.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>-&nbsp; The study finds <strong>evidence that having a high BMI causes leukemia and several types of cancer,</strong> including cancers of the esophagus, liver, breast, uterus, ovary, kidney and thyroid.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>-&nbsp; In rich and poor countries, obesity rates increased, indicating "the problem is not simply a function of income or wealth. Changes in the food environment and food systems are probably major drivers. Increased availability, accessibility, and affordability of energy-dense foods, along with intense marketing of such foods, could explain excess energy intake and weight gain among different populations. The reduced opportunities for physical activity that have followed urbanization and other changes in the built environment have also been considered as potential drivers; however, these changes generally preceded the global increase in obesity and are less likely to be major contributors."</p> </blockquote> <p>Of course, obesity in the "fast food nation" is hardly a new epidemic though the rate of change is fairly staggering.</p> <p><a href=" - Obese 2.JPG"><img src="" style="width: 600px; height: 372px;" /></a></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Meanwhile, Michelle Obama's crusade against childhood obesity didn't seem to work all that well...</p> <p><a href=" - Obese 3.JPG"><img src="" style="width: 525px; height: 397px;" /></a></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>But that "Turn-ip for what?" video was so clever...shocking it was ineffective.</p> <p><iframe src="" width="600" height="337" frameborder="0"></iframe></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Finally, for all of you who will undoubtedly sign up for a brand new gym membership as part of your New Years resolution to shed the extra pounds in might as well just give up now because the OECD predicts we're all just going to get much fatter over the next 15 years.</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p>OECD projections show a steady increase in obesity rates until at least 2030 (Figure 5). Obesity levels are expected to be particularly high in the United States, Mexico and England, where 47%, 39% and 35% of the population respectively are projected to be obese in 2030. On the contrary, the increase is expected to be weaker in Italy and Korea, with obesity rates projected to be 13% and 9% in 2030, respectively. The level of obesity in France is projected to nearly match that of Spain, at 21% in 2030. Obesity rates are projected to increase at a faster pace in Korea and Switzerland where rates have been historically low. </p> </blockquote> <p><a href=" - Obese 4.JPG"><img src="" style="width: 600px; height: 366px;" /></a></p> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_teaser" width="665" height="428" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> Bariatrics Body shape Childhood obesity China Clinical medicine Epidemiology of obesity France Health Health Hospitality India Italy Medicine Mexico Obesity Obesity in the United States OECD Pediatrics Rate of Change Social Issues Switzerland Trump administration America Thu, 27 Jul 2017 01:25:00 +0000 Tyler Durden 600565 at Bitcoin Is Like The Internet In 1995 <p><a href="">InternationalMan&#39;s Nick Giamburno</a> is a <strong>strong advocate of international diversification</strong> - such as holding multiple passports and offshore assets. It frees you from absolute dependence on any one country. In short, international diversification minimizes the State&rsquo;s power to coerce you. <strong>Bitcoin is an important part of this strategy. It&rsquo;s an inherently international asset.</strong></p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>Bitcoin has incredible value as an international transfer mechanism. You can take any amount in and out of any country. You don&rsquo;t need permission from any government.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>You can send it across any border&mdash;or any number of borders&mdash;as often as you want. And there&rsquo;s nothing anyone can do about it.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>I&rsquo;ve seen this firsthand in Latin America, where bitcoin helps people get around capital controls. (Governments use capital controls to trap money within their borders so they have more to steal.)</strong></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>Bitcoin helps people bypass these restrictions. That&rsquo;s because governments can&rsquo;t freeze, seize, or block the transactions.</strong></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>This is why bitcoin is such a disruptive and exciting technology, and why bitcoin should be a critical tool in your international diversification toolkit.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Bitcoin&rsquo;s use is set to explode&hellip; and it could make you a fortune.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong><em>All the details are below in this must-read article from my friend and colleague Greg Wilson. I think you&rsquo;ll enjoy it.</em></strong></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong><em>Greg is a true expert on all things bitcoin. He stays on top of all the breaking bitcoin news more than anyone else that I know of.</em></strong></p> </blockquote> <h3><u>This Event Could Be Bitcoin&rsquo;s &ldquo;Mainstream Moment&rdquo;</u></h3> <p><strong>On August 9, 1995, the internet had its &ldquo;mainstream&rdquo; moment.</strong></p> <p>That&rsquo;s when Netscape held its<strong> initial public offering (IPO) </strong>and released its web browser, Netscape Navigator, to the world.</p> <p>At that point, the internet had already been around for 15 years.</p> <p>Yet despite being one of the greatest inventions in history, the world was slow to adopt. In 1995, only 0.3% of the world&rsquo;s population used the internet.</p> <p><strong>The internet needed a catalyst. And looking back, it was Netscape.</strong></p> <p>The numbers back it up.</p> <p>In 1995, there were 16 million internet users. Then Netscape Navigator came along. By the end of 1996, the number of internet users had more than doubled to 36 million.</p> <p>And five years later, we reached over a half-billion users. That&rsquo;s growth of over 100% annually.</p> <p><img src="" style="max-width: 550px; width: 600px; height: 386px;" /></p> <p><strong>The success of the IPO inspired the term &ldquo;Netscape moment.&rdquo; Today, we use the term to describe an event that signals the dawn of a new industry.</strong></p> <p>I believe we&rsquo;ve already had our Netscape moment for another technology: bitcoin.</p> <p>Now, it&rsquo;s incredibly difficult to make predictions, especially without the benefit of hindsight. And I might be wrong.</p> <p>Nevertheless, today I&rsquo;ll tell you which key event over the past two years was bitcoin&rsquo;s Netscape moment.</p> <h3><u><strong>Bitcoin Is Like the Internet in 1995</strong></u></h3> <p><strong>Today, there&rsquo;s an estimated 15 million&ndash;35 million bitcoin users. </strong>We&rsquo;ll split it in the middle and call it 25 million.</p> <p><strong>That&rsquo;s 0.3% of the population&hellip; similar to the number of internet users before its Netscape moment.</strong></p> <p>Like the internet in 1995, bitcoin continues to gain popularity.</p> <p>The chart below highlights the key events of the last two years.</p> <p><img src="" style="max-width: 550px; width: 600px; height: 386px;" /></p> <p><strong>To me, one event stands out as bitcoin&rsquo;s Netscape moment. That&rsquo;s when Japan legalized bitcoin.</strong></p> <h3><u><strong>Bitcoin&rsquo;s Moment</strong></u></h3> <p>Since bitcoin was legalized, here&rsquo;s what has happened in Japan&hellip;</p> <ul> <li> <p>More than 260,000 stores in Japan are rolling out bitcoin as a payment method.</p> </li> <li> <p>Stores at famed electronics marketplace Akihabara have started accepting bitcoin.</p> </li> <li> <p>Japan is setting up a bitcoin &ldquo;testing hub&rdquo; for fintech companies.</p> </li> <li> <p>Leading Japanese bitcoin exchanges have unveiled plans to accelerate adoption.</p> </li> </ul> <p><strong>It&rsquo;s all leading to increased usage of bitcoin in Japan.</strong></p> <p>Volume on LocalBitcoins has accelerated since the law went into effect. And it had its highest volume week of the year the last week of June, topping 4.7 million yen (about $42,000).</p> <p><img src="" style="max-width: 550px; width: 100%; height: auto;" width="550" /></p> <p><strong>Tokyo&rsquo;s Sushi-Bar Numazuko Ginza 1st is an example of the growing popularity of bitcoin in Japan. The restaurant was one of the first to accept bitcoin payments.</strong></p> <p>The restaurant&rsquo;s manager said there were only a few bitcoin payments per month two years ago. By March 2017, that number increased to about 70.</p> <p>This quote from the restaurant manager sums it up best:<u><em><strong> &ldquo;Japanese customers are using bitcoin more than we expected.&rdquo;</strong></em></u></p> <h3><u><strong>How to Profit From the &ldquo;Bitcoin Moment&rdquo;</strong></u></h3> <p><u><em><strong>I think we&rsquo;ll look back at Japan&rsquo;s legalization of bitcoin as its Netscape moment.</strong></em></u></p> <p>Every day, millions of people are working on bitcoin to make it better. And its acceptance will only rise from here.</p> <p>And just recently, South Korea announced it will regulate and legalize bitcoin. The trend that started in Japan continues unabated.</p> <p><strong>The best way to profit from this trend is simply to buy bitcoin.</strong></p> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_teaser" width="549" height="388" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> Alternative currencies Bitcoin Bitcoin Cryptocurrencies Currency Economics of bitcoin Exonumia Japan Latin America Legality of bitcoin by country or territory Netscape Numismatics Technology Yen Thu, 27 Jul 2017 01:00:00 +0000 Tyler Durden 600550 at