Author Archive for



23
Sep
16

sea of love

phil-phillips.

“Sea of Love” is a song written by John Phillip Baptiste when he was working as a bellboy in Lake Charles LA. It was written for a love interest.

He was introduced to local record producer George Khoury, who brought Baptiste into his studio to record the song. At Khoury’s request, Baptiste took the stage name of Phil Phillips.

Phillips’ 1959 recording of the song peaked at No. 1 on the US Billboard R&B chart and No. 2 on the Billboard Hot 100. It became a gold record. It was the only top-40 chart song for Baptiste, who never recorded another hit.

Due to its success, the song was eventually leased to Mercury Records and has been covered by numerous artists and featured in films—but Baptiste says he only ever received $6,800 for recording it.

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Groove of the Day

Listen to Phil Phillips performing “Sea of Love”

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22
Sep
16

new rules

1545_1125The founding of Maryland Colony

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I recently received an earful of disapproval from a very loyal reader and supporter, saying that I am “too liberal” in my view that Muslims should not receive the approbation of society for the actions of that religion’s most radicalized adherents.

Let me make my own beliefs perfectly clear.

I am a believer in what is generally believed to be an “outlier” tradition in our Western society (reincarnation), and I don’t want any fundamentalist of any stripe interfering with what I believe. If I am right, that is on me alone. If I am wrong, that is on me, too. Right or wrong, it can’t possibly make any difference to anyone but me… unless your goal is to control what I think.

If there is anyone whose beliefs about religion are closest to mine, it is Bill Maher—although I believe he is throwing out the baby with the bath-water in rejecting all belief in an afterlife. But he will be the last to deny me the right to bet on reincarnation… especially if I eschew proselytizing as a personal practice.

landing-plymouth-rockUnless my memories of civics have failed me, it is my understanding that among the first Europeans to found this country were adherents of Puritanism, one of the most “forbidden” religious sects in the Europe of that time. They came here to escape the persecution of that age and to assure that no one would interfere with their right to practice their religion without outside interference.

It is too bad that the Puritans did not practice what they preached—the desire of society to establish theocracies has happened time and again; it is a perennial stumbling-block when society takes leave of its senses. It’s too bad that repressive societies like Saudi Arabia have instituted “religious police” and other crimes against human rights to exercise political control. But if such knuckle-dragging did not exist, no one would want to come here. Yet it seems to me that what so many immigrants forget is that the repressive practices of their “Old Worlds” must remain there—freedom for one’s self requires a new level of tolerance towards all. That’s what “American” is supposed to mean.

This is not a “liberal” notion, as my complaining reader has said. It is, in fact, one of the bedrock beliefs of conservatism… it preserves the foundations of the nation our ancestors founded and that we have inherited. You can call me a “liberal” all you want, but I think it is a bum rap.

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Groove of the Day

Listen to Ylvis performing “Intolerant”

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Equinox

The Autumnal Equinox was today at 9:21 am Central Time

21
Sep
16

still trying—but not hard enough

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Jails, Prisons Still Trying to Meet Federal Anti-Rape Rules

by the Associated Press

September 11, 2016

Miguel Moll knew the risk of rape when he was thrown into a Texas jail in 1989 after joyriding in a stolen car.

Then 17, he was placed in a holding pen in Houston, and an older inmate said of the teenager, “I got this one.” The comment sparked the first of many fights Moll had while behind bars.

“The mentality you have to develop very quickly is either that of a wolf or that of a lamb,” he recalled.

A generation later, the federal government has adopted guidelines intended to prevent prison rape in part by separating young offenders from adult inmates. But four years after the rules were supposed to take effect, they are proving difficult to adopt in the nation’s crowded jails and penitentiaries.

Since 2012, states have been working to meet the standards set forth by the Prison Rape Elimination Act, or PREA, which was partially inspired by the 1996 death of Rodney Hulin, an undersized 17-year-old inmate who hanged himself in Texas after his requests for help following repeated rapes by adult inmates were denied.

Texas sheriff’s offices say separating the two populations has been a challenge because of overcrowding and steep financial costs.

“It’s a big logistical headache,” Brazos County Sheriff Chris Kirk said.

The law was also supposed to provide for better staff training, improved reporting and investigation of all sexual assaults behind bars and more money for research.

In 2011-12, an estimated 4% of state and federal inmates and 3.2% of jail inmates reported experiencing one or more incidents of sexual victimization by another inmate or facility staff, according to the Justice Department.

The rape-prevention law “is a valuable and important act, and we take it very seriously,” said Ryan Sullivan, a spokesman for the Harris County Sheriff’s Office, which has about 150 youth offenders at its jail in Houston. The facility holds more than 9,000 inmates.

The Harris County Jail was cited in a May audit for not housing 17-year-old offenders apart from adult inmates. Elsewhere in Texas, Dallas County is spending more than $11,000 per week to keep at least 60 juveniles separated from adults at its jail complex.

Like Moll, Art Medina was incarcerated at 17 in Texas. He was later sentenced to life in prison in 1985 for his role in a fatal Houston-area carjacking and spent 15 years in solitary confinement after seriously wounding an inmate who threatened to rape him. He was paroled after serving a total of 26 years.

Now in their 40s, both men have returned to the prison system as volunteers to help adopt the PREA standards. Medina said in the past inmates felt like “nobody cares about them.”

“That culture has changed. People are being held accountable,” he said.

The nation’s 7,600-plus prisons, jails, community-based facilities and juvenile detention centers are being checked on their compliance with the law. So far, only 12 states are in full compliance, according to the Justice Department. Thirty-six other states say they are working to comply.

Still, the department said in an email that it is sees “evidence of a very substantial effort nationwide” to satisfy the new standards.

The age separation has been especially complicated in states such as Texas that prosecute 17-year-olds as adults. Advocates say some facilities still question whether the federal mandate applies to them.

In many jurisdictions, one of the biggest barriers is summoning the political will to make changes, said Brenda Smith, who was a member of the National Prison Rape Elimination Commission, which helped develop the standards.

States that do not comply face losing 5% of their federal prison grants. County jails and local lockups are usually not included in the determination of whether a state is in compliance. Locally run facilities have no risk of losing federal money unless that funding is directly tied to a state contract for jail services.

Smith, a law professor at American University in Washington, DC, said that means local authorities can only be held accountable by public criticism or lawsuits.

In Michigan, the prison system faces federal and state lawsuits filed by prisoners who allege officials failed to adequately separate offenders ages 14 to 17 from adults, resulting in sexual assaults.

A Wisconsin legislative report concluded in July that the state’s prison system was not splitting up the age groups. And an American Civil Liberties Union survey in North Carolina in 2014 found that none of the 60-plus county jails that responded appeared to be in complete compliance.

Those findings have renewed calls for the states that prosecute 17-year-olds as adults to raise their age of adult criminal responsibility to 18. Those states include Texas, Michigan and North Carolina. Sullivan, Kirk and other Texas jail officials say they would be in favor of raising the age.

Efforts to raise the age failed in the last legislative session in Texas, but advocates plan to try again next year, said Elizabeth Henneke, policy attorney with the Texas Criminal Justice Coalition.

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Groove of the Day

Listen to Depeche Mode performing “Waiting for the Night”

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20
Sep
16

unintended consequences

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chelseabombing

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bomber.

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Fucking it up for all Muslims.

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Groove of the Day

Listen to The Velvet Underground & Nico performing “Chelsea Girls”

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19
Sep
16

michael’s boys

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Before Michael Jackson died, it had become a standard joke among comedians: “Parents, please! Don’t let your kids stay overnight at Michael Jackson’s house.”

Duh-uh. Jackson has been dead now for more than 7 years, yet those jokes still keep coming home to roost.

1c7402797-tdy-130516-wade-01Thirty-three-year-old Australian Wade Robeson— now a “celebrity choreographer”—is, according to The Hollywood Reporter, alleging that the late pop icon and his “close associates” used MJJ Productions and MJJ Ventures—two of Jackson’s companies—as fronts “designed, developed and operated [as] what is likely the most sophisticated public child sexual abuse procurement and facilitation organization the world has known.”

Robson sued the companies in 2013 after undergoing psychotherapy after a break-down in 2012, alleging that he was sexually abused by Jackson as a child. Until this time, he hadn’t even acknowledged that he’d been sexually abused. A superior court judge ruled in May 2015 that the claim would be dismissed because Robson had waited too long to pursue legal action. Several months ago, though, Robson tapped attorney Vince Finaldi to amend the suit to include his most recent claims.

“MJJ PRODUCTIONS and MJJ VENTURES were held out to the public to be businesses dedicated to creating and distributing multimedia entertainment by MICHAEL JACKSON, however, in fact, they actually served dual purposes,” Finaldi wrote in the complaint. “The thinly-veiled, covert second purpose of these businesses was to operate as a child sexual abuse operation, specifically designed to locate, attract, lure and seduce child sexual abuse victims.”

Robson first met Jackson when he was just five years old, after winning a dance competition that was run by MJJ Productions in Robson’s native Australia. Jackson must have been taken with the little boy because he told his mother that if they were ever in the US they should look him up. In 1989, Robson’s family took a trip to California’s Disneyland. The complaint states that Robson’s mother set up a meeting with Jackson’s assistant, Norma Staikos, who is described in the legal complaint as “a ‘madam’ or ‘procurer.’” Robson’s family was then invited to stay at Jackson’s Neverland Ranch, where the then-7-year-old Robson shared a bed with Jackson. (His family stayed in a separate room.) Robson claims that it was during that weekend that Jackson first abused him.

The graphically-detailed complaint describes encounters ranging from French kissing to penetrative sex. Robson claims the abuse continued until he was 14, but became less frequent when he “began showing signs of puberty” and Jackson was “no longer as interested in him sexually.”

Robson actually testified in defense of Jackson during a civil suit, as well as during the singer’s 2005 criminal trial. In the run-up to his testimony, Robson claims that Jackson called him frequently and “‘brain washed’ him into being a ‘good soldier.’” At that time, Robson testified that Jackson did not abuse him. He now claims that he did not believe he was abused until after he entered psychotherapy in 2012, after suffering a nervous breakdown.

Now the case is set to go to trial on March 13, 2017. Jackson’s estate has not commented on the claims.

You’re probably asking yourself by now: “How credible are these allegations?” and “How could any parent give his/her permission for a child to spend the night with a suspected pedophile if things were not totally innocent and on the up-and-up?”

john-clark-donahueSince reading about Robson’s pending case, I read about one other case: the 1984 accusation and arrest for child molestation against John Clark Donahue, the artistic director of the Children’s Theatre Company (CTC) of Minneapolis. Since the Minnesota Legislature extended the statute of limitations on abuse until May 24, 2016, eight plaintiffs have sued CTC and former staffers in cases stemming from the sex abuse scandal that engulfed the theater three decades ago. Buttressed by this second case—one with which I have a casual familiarity (I used to work for the Minneapolis Institute of Arts, which for a time was the home of CTC)—I will answer you that not only are the allegations credible, but in extraordinary circumstances, remarkable stuff happens that even involves the acquiescence of nominally good parents.

jackson-neverlandOf course, John Donahue had nowhere near the resources and fame of Michael Jackson, but like Jackson, he was seen by his community to be able to walk on water because of his creative brilliance, longevity, and fawning acolytes. So a “good guy” pedophile doesn’t even have to have amusement park rides in his yard if he can surround himself with enough enablers AND if he can devote enough time to grooming not only the kids but the parents.

When most people think about Michael Jackson’s sleepovers with children, they have in their mind a bunch of kids having a slumber party with Jackson in his bedroom, or Jackson sleeping on the floor or a cot while children took the bed. While this may have been the case on some occasions, when it came to Jackson’s friends, the boys with whom Jackson formed special attachments, Jackson above all else preferred to sleep one-on-one with them—often going to extraordinary lengths to make it happen.

And it happened a lot. By studying his testimony, we can ascertain that Wade spent over 300 nights alone with Jackson over seven years. Expanded to include the sleepovers of just two more boys, the total number is 850 one-on-one sleepovers. And even this is probably a fraction given the total number of children with whom Jackson is said to have slept.

Jackson’s strategy was disturbing and consistent. Whenever he traveled, he took families with him for a veneer of respectability, yet insisted on separating those families and having the boys stay in his room.

What has impressed me about both child abuse cases is the extraordinary amount of time each man devoted to cultivating their relationships with boys. For example, whenever they were back in Australia, Jackson spent hours on the phone with Wade, with Jackson calling at least once a week and sometimes more often. Yet the Robesons were not the only recipients of such attention. Jackson went to great lengths to spend one-on-one nights with many of his “special friends”: flying them in from overseas, taking them on trips, buying them gifts, keeping parents pacified, and making lengthy phone calls to “stay in touch.”

Jackson’s sexual proclivities cost him millions of dollars.

John Donahue, too, devoted prodigious amounts of energy to cultivating his inner circle. Said one theater staff member: “He would work on the kids for months—these were initial contacts—then he made gentle advances that he could later say were misinterpreted.” A great deal of time and effort expended for such busy men.

In both cases, too, there was ample evidence that parents and other adults knew what was going on.

In Michael Jackson’s case, if parents had any suspicions about Jackson, their judgement was clouded not just by Jackson’s manipulation, but hopelessly compromised by Jackson’s largesse. Parents and siblings were regularly chauffeured off to shopping malls with cash and credit cards and told to buy “whatever they want,” while Michael’s “special friends” remained at Neverland with Michael under his supervision.

In John Donahue’s case, a judge spent a week poring over the 1,000-page transcript of the grand-jury investigation of CTC, and in a statement at Donahue’s sentencing, the judge concluded that “collectively this community knew what was going on at Children’s Theatre.” In his view, the community refused to confront adult-adolescent sexuality at the theater because it was so enamored of the art Donahue produced.

The not-so-secret standing joke at CTC was: “How do you separate the men from the boys at CTC?” Answer: “With a crowbar.”

When CTC got good—and it got good very rapidly—it attracted not only poor kids from the neighborhood, but children and their wealthy parents from well-heeled suburbs. Those earliest patrons and board members became zealots for Donahue, said a former board president.

One staff member was quoted as saying: “A lot of parents knew what was going on there.” Parents pulled her aside, pleading with her to keep an eye on their children; friends had told them that their sons had been abused at CTC. If they feared for their children, she would ask, why didn’t they keep them out of CTC?

“‘This is a real prestigious theater company and it’s known all over the world, and I want my child to be part of it,'” she remembers parents responding.

In both cases, although each man caused great harm to their underaged victims, neither was a monster in the traditional sense of the word. They never grabbed children off the street in order to molest them, they never were vicious child rapists, and they certainly never felt it was their goal—in their minds—to ‘harm’ children in any way.

That is more the province of child molesters like Danny Heinrich, who set out to inflict harm on their victims.

Both men were “good guy” child molesters. They deliberately and consciously had a long-term plan to get close to boys and over a period of time make it seem normal for those young boys to share sexual relations with men much older than themselves.

Jackson convinced the parents, and the boys, that it was perfectly natural for him to have a boy in his bed for extended periods of time. He convinced parents to leave their sons in his care and not to bat an eye when they heard Jackson shared a bed with them. As you have seen, some parents even became vigorous defenders of the practice.

Most of these parental defenders were groomed over a period of time. The boys’ statements, where they say “nothing happened,” should be viewed with a degree of skepticism. Victims of “nice guy” pedophiles in most cases are reticent to admit molestation.

Ken Lanning, the FBI’s foremost expert on child sexual abuse, has this to say about such victims: Child-lover molesters almost never use violence for sex, said Lanning. Instead, they groom and seduce and manipulate and use cooperation to get what they want out of the child. “I can’t tell you how many cases where there are letters from the victim written to the accused, saying, ‘You’re the nicest person I ever met,’ or ‘You’ve been so good to me,’” said Lanning. Many victims don’t tell anyone of the inappropriate behavior because they are considered “compliant child victims.” “A child can’t legally consent to having sex, but some of them aren’t necessarily fighting him off,” said Lanning. “They’re developmentally immature, and later they feel ashamed and embarrassed that they cooperated in their victimization.”

Because victims of acquaintance exploitation usually have been carefully seduced and often do not realize they are victims, they repeatedly and voluntarily return to the offender. Society and the criminal-justice system have a difficult time understanding this. If a boy is molested by his neighbor, teacher, or clergy member, why does he “allow” it to continue? Most likely he may not initially realize he is a victim. Some victims are simply willing to trade sex for attention, affection, and gifts and do not believe they are victims. The sex itself might even be enjoyable. The offender may be treating them better than anyone has ever treated them before.

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fznhzholu7wxgsfail3h

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Groove of the Day

Listen to Hunter Hayes performing “Secret Love”

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Weather Report

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18
Sep
16

gag reflex

You can’t trust anybody in authority. At the top of my list of untrustables are politicians, universities, and the food/health/drug industries. A long time ago, someone told me that if you give money to a disease, your money will likely be spent in that disease’s perpetuation—and I believed it. Such is the way of the world.

Here are just three stories which I found recently that make my blood boil. If you’ve got a better story, please post the link as a comment. Let’s all go crazy.

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Former Mayor Claims Four-Year-Old “Initiated Sex”

by Jonathon Turley, jonathanturley.com

September 16, 2016

ad_219147549In what must be the singularly worst defense ever in the annals of criminal law, Richard Keenan, 65, the former mayor of Hubbard, Ohio, confessed to raping a four-year-old girl but insisted that she was a “willing participant” and initiated the sex.

Keenan was mayor from 2010-2011 and billed himself as a devout Christian. He has now confessed to three years of sexual contact with the child starting when she was only four. He can now face life imprisonment.

The interesting legal element is that the abuse came to light during group discussions at a hospital. He later checked himself into a psychiatric clinic because he was suicidal. The question will now be whether the statements are admissible in court. There is a good chance that they are admissible since this was not a police or government agent eliciting the statements and it was the basis for someone to call the police. It is also hard to maintain privilege in a group settings and there is a crime/fraud exception to privilege claims.

In addition there are accounts of Keenan discussing the issue with a minister and with family members. The minister conversion would be privileged. The assaults occurred in September 2015.

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Jonathan Turley is the Shapiro Professor of Public Interest Law at George Washington University.

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$1 million of frugal librarian’s bequest to NH school goes to football scoreboard

by Bill Chappell, National Public Radio

September 15, 2016

robert-morin-a35c3a42a67a705923437f7f12e3c85f855e0915News that late librarian Robert Morin left the University of New Hampshire $4 million has been hailed as a symbol of Morin’s dedication and generosity. But the school’s decision to spend $1 million of that money on a new video scoreboard for the football stadium is being criticized.

“A life lived in frugality, spent frivolously” on a million-dollar scoreboard, one commenter wrote on a local newspaper site, calling the decision “an assault” on Morin’s life. Others say it’s simply a shame that more of the money didn’t go to the university’s Dimond Library, where Morin spent much of his life.

On the library’s website, a message next to a button reading “Make a Gift” explains that the library “depends on gifts to improve our collections, facilities, services, and programs for students, faculty, staff, and New Hampshire residents.”

Here’s how the university says it’s spending Morin’s millions:

$2.5 million toward an expanded career center for students and alumni;

$1 million toward a video scoreboard for the new football stadium;

$100,000 to Dimond Library, to provide “scholarships for work-study students, support staff members who continue their studies in library science and fund the renovation of one of the library’s multimedia rooms.”

In response to that allocation, New Hampshire graduate Claire Cortese wrote a critical blog post for the Odyssey website that was highlighted by Inside Higher Ed. In it, Cortese writes, “I doubt any student will look back in ten years and say ‘man, that video scoreboard—that really impacted my experience at UNH in a meaningful and beneficial way.’ ”

Cortese also notes that the school’s football stadium recently reopened after a $25 million renovation.

School officials say the money for the library was the only “dedicated gift” in Morin’s bequest, meaning that the rest of the estate was unrestricted; Deborah Dutton, vice president for advancement and president of the UNH Foundation, says, “Unrestricted gifts give the university the ability to use the funds for our highest priorities and emerging opportunities.”

When we asked a university representative if the bequest will result in anything being named for Morin, Erika Mantz, the school’s director of media relations, noted that “a bench in the courtyard outside the library was inscribed with his name.”

Mantz added, “At this time a decision has not been made as to how we will further recognize Mr. Morin’s incredible generosity.”

Morin was 77 when he died in the spring of 2015. For nearly 50 years, he had worked as a cataloger at the university’s main library. It seems that both Morin’s wealth and his gift to the school took people by pleasant surprise.

“I’m so impressed with his commitment to UNH, both in his years of service as well as this donation,” one person wrote on the school’s Facebook announcement about the bequest. “Speaking as a university librarian myself, it isn’t easy to accumulate that much money!”

In another sign that the scoreboard issue seems to have struck a sour note with some members of the university community, consider that in a caption contest on the school’s Facebook page — in which readers are invited to subtitle a photo of two students on campus — the leading entry Thursday afternoon reads:

“Did you hear about the scoreboard?”

“Yeah. I’ll be paying my student loans off until I’m fifty, and they spent a million bucks on a fucking SCOREBOARD?”

A New Hampshire native, Morin was known for his affection for movies and books; according to his obituary, his job entailed writing short descriptions of DVDs, entering CDs into the library system, and cataloging “book after book of sheet music.”

The only association between the librarian and the football program that was mentioned by the university was the observation that Morin had spent the past 15 months of his life in an assisted living center — and that there, “he started watching football games on television, mastering the rules and names of the players and teams.”

As for the money he left to UNH, Morin’s financial adviser, Edward Mullen, tells the Union Leader that the librarian had a knack for not spending what he made. From the newspaper:

“Mullen said Morin had an older vehicle and, despite being a millionaire, he ate frozen dinners.

” ‘He never went out,’ Mullen said.

“Mullen said Morin decided to give all of his money to his alma mater because he did not have any relatives he wanted to leave it to. Morin trusted UNH to spend the money wisely for students.”

Morin’s only living relatives when he died were his two brothers, Ronald and Lucien, according to his obituary. He requested that there not be a public service for his funeral; he was buried in the family plot in St. Louis Cemetery in Nashua.

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Bill Chappell is a writer and producer who currently works on “The Two Way,” NPR’s flagship news portal. In the past, he has edited and coordinated digital features for Morning Edition and Fresh Air, in addition to editing the rundown of All Things Considered.

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Sweet deal? Sugar industry blamed fat in fake studies

by RT Staff (Russia Today)

September 13, 2016

The sugar industry paid Harvard researchers in the 1960s to bury research linking sugar intake to heart disease and to instead make fat the culprit, according to a study of archival documents.

1412765074648273“These internal documents show that the Sugar Research Foundation initiated coronary heart disease research in 1965 to protect market share and that its first project, a literature review, was published in the New English Journal of Medicine without disclosure of the sugar industry’s funding or role,” stated the study.

The internal sugar industry documents were found in public archives by a researcher at the University of California, San Francisco.

UCSF researchers analyzed more than 340 documents indicating the relationship between the sugar industry and Roger Adams, then a professor of organic chemistry who served on the scientific advisory boards for the sugar industry, and Mark Hegsted, one of the Harvard researchers who produced the literature review.

The documents showed the sugar industry was aware of evidence in the 1960s that linked sugar consumption to high blood cholesterol and triglyceride levels and was thought to be risk factors for coronary heart disease.

The sugar industry commissioned Project 226, a literature review written by researchers at the Harvard University School of Public Nutrition Department, which concluded there was “no doubt” that the only dietary intervention required to prevent coronary heart disease was to reduce dietary cholesterol and substitute polyunsaturated fat for saturated fat in the American diet.

The sugar industry paid the Harvard scientist the equivalent of $50,000 in 2016 dollars.

The study found the NEJM review served the sugar industry’s interests by arguing that studies “associating sucrose with coronary heart disease were limited” and that sugar should not be included in assessments of risk of heart disease.

Researchers found the sugar industry would spend $600,000 (the equivalent of $5.3 million in 2016 dollars) to teach “people who had never had a course in biochemistry…that sugar is what keeps every human being alive and with energy to face our daily problems,” according to a UCSF press release.

Among the documents was a speech from 1954 by Sugar Research Foundation (SRF) president Henry Hass, which showed that they recognized that if Americans adopted low-fat diets, then per-capita consumption of sugar would increase by more than one-third. The trade organization represented 30 international members.

“The literature review helped shape not only public opinion on what causes heart problems but also the scientific community’s view of how to evaluate dietary risk factors to heart disease,” said lead author Cristin Kearns, who discovered the industry documents.

Other documents showed the sugar industry became concerned in 1962 with evidence showing that a low-fat diet high in sugar could elevate serum cholesterol level. In 1964, the SRF vice president and director of research, John Hickson, said new research on coronary heart disease found that “sugar is a less desirable dietary source of calories than other carbohydrates,” and referred to the work since 1957 of British physiologist John Yudkin, who challenged population studies singling out saturated fat as the primary dietary cause of coronary heart disease “and suggested other factors, including sucrose, were at least equally important.”

“Hickson proposed that SRF ‘could embark on a major program’ to counter Yudkin and other ‘negative attitudes toward sugar,’” stated the study.

It found that Hickson recommended an opinion poll “to learn what public concepts we should reinforce and what ones we need to combat through our research and information and legislation programs,” a symposium to “bring detractors before a board of their peers where their fallacies could be unveiled,” and recommended the sugar industry fund coronary heart disease research to “see what the weak points there are in the experimentation, and replicate the studies with appropriate corrections. Then publish the data and refute our detractors.”

The analysis Sugar Industry and Coronary Heart Disease Research: A Historical Analysis of Internal Industry Documents was published Monday in JAMA Internal Medicine.

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Groove of the Day

Listen to Prince performing “Let’s Go Crazy”

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17
Sep
16

remember the drive-in?

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In the days before the VCR, video rentals, and streaming movies, drive-in theaters were all the rage from the early 1930s to the 1970s. In the ’50s parents would bundle their pajamaed kids into the back of the car and hopefully they would be asleep before the end of the evening. The big advantage of drive-ins at this time was that the kids could be as disruptive as they chose, and no one would care. When the kids grew up in the ’60s and became teenagers, they went to the drive-in to get away from their parents and hopefully do some heavy petting.

There were lots of steamed-up car windows back then. Before World War II, there were only about 100 drive-in screens in the US. But after the war, at the height of the drive-in movie fad, there were some 4,000 drive-ins spread across the United States. By the 1980s, however, fewer than 200 screens survived—although a slight nostalgia-driven revival followed. In 2013, drive-ins comprised only 1.5% of movie screens in the United States, with 389 theaters in operation. Compare this with the industry’s height, when about 25% of the nation’s movie screens had been in a drive-in.

From the beginning, drive-in theaters were a mom-and-pop business that relied on concession food sales and changing gimmickry like playgrounds, aircraft landing fields, pony rides, daytime flea markets, wading pools, and even porn. The movies themselves were old if they were “A” movies, and first-run if they were “B” fare. Cheesy films and drive-ins have always been attached at the hip.

That is a part of their enduring appeal.

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Listen to Connie Francis performing “Where the Boys Are”

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