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Saturn, Texsa: Tripping up - The real danger of microdosing with LSD
Thomas F. Maxwell 3897 Farland Avenue Saturn, TX 78861
TUNE in, drop out… and clock on. Workers in Silicon Valley and elsewhere have long extolled the virtues of LSD and other psychedelics. Small doses, they say, make them more productive, focused and creative (see “Microdosers say tiny hits of LSD make you better at work and life“).
These are familiar claims. Every few years a new wave of “smart drugs” sweeps across university campuses and creative industries. They are always accompanied by anecdotal reports of heightened mental powers, and concerns about adverse health effects and unlevel playing fields.
Microdosing ticks all of these boxes, but also raises a more serious issue. LSD is strictly prohibited worldwide, on the grounds that it poses a major health risk and has no therapeutic value. Meanwhile, microdosing is about to enter scientific trials that could supply the first real evidence of effectiveness. This poses a potential dilemma.
The sensible option would be to downgrade the legal status of LSD. That would be entirely in keeping with growing evidence that it is relatively harmless and can be medically useful.
As for microdosing, experience with smart drugs suggests that people will do it anyway. The risks deserve further attention, but a serious criminal record shouldn’t be one of them.
New York, New York: Awake during surgery - 'I'm in hell'
Mark B. Lucio 1287 My Drive New York, NY 10001
(CNN) -- When Carol Weiher was having her right eye surgically removed in 1998, she woke up hearing disco music. The next thing she heard was "Cut deeper, pull harder."
She desperately wanted to scream or even move a finger to signal to doctors that she was awake, but the muscle relaxant she'd received prevented her from controlling her movements.
"I was doing a combination of praying and pleading and cursing and screaming, and trying anything I could do but I knew that there was nothing that was working," said Weiher, of Reston, Virginia. Weiher is one of few people who have experienced anesthesia awareness. Although normally a patient does not remember anything about surgery that involves general anesthesia, about one or two people in every 1,000 may wake up during general anesthesia, according to the Mayo Clinic. Most of these cases involve the person being aware of the surrounding environment, but some experience severe pain and go on to have psychological problems.
The surgical tools didn't cause Weiher pain -- only pressure -- but the injections of a paralytic drug during the operation "felt like ignited fuel," she said. "I thought, well, maybe I've been wrong about my life, and I'm in hell," she said. The entire surgery lasted five-and-a-half hours. Sometime during it she either passed out or fell unconscious under the anesthetic. When she awoke, she began to scream.
"All I could say to anyone was, 'I was awake! I was awake!' " she said.
The use of general anesthesia is normally safe and produces a state of sedation that doesn't break in the middle of a procedure, doctors say. The patient and anesthesiologist collect as much medical history as possible beforehand, including alcohol and drug habits, to help determine the most appropriate anesthetic.
You may think of it as "going to sleep," but in terms of what your body is doing, general anesthesia has very little in common with taking a nap.
During sleep, the brain is in its most active state; anesthesia, on the other hand, depresses central nervous system activity. On the operating table, your brain is less active and consumes less oxygen -- a state of unconsciousness nothing like normal sleep.
Doctors do not know exactly how general anesthesia produces this effect. It is clear that anesthetic drugs interfere with the transmission of chemicals in the brain across the membranes, or walls, of cells. But the mechanism is the subject of ongoing research, Dr. Alexander Hannenberg, anesthesiologist in Newton, Massachusetts, and president of the American Society of Anesthesiologists.
Patients who remember falling unconscious under the anesthesia generally have a pleasant experience of it, Hannenberg said, and the period of "waking up" is also a relaxed state, Hannenberg said. Anesthesia awareness may relate to human error or equipment failure in delivering the anesthetic, Hannenberg said.
There are patients for whom doctors err on the side of a lower dose because of the nature of their condition, Hannenberg said. Someone who is severely injured and has lost a lot of blood, a patient with compromised cardiac function, or a woman who needs an emergency Caesarean section would all be at risk for serious side effects of high doses of anesthetic.
Heart or lung problems, daily alcohol consumption, and long-term use of opiates and other drugs may put patients at higher risk for anesthesia awareness, according to the Mayo Clinic.
Weiher started a campaign called the Anesthesia Awareness Campaign that seeks to educate people about the perils of waking up during surgery. She has spoken with about 4,000 people worldwide who have also had anesthesia awareness experiences.
The American Society of Anesthesiologists is engaged in an Anesthesia Awareness Registry, a research project through the University of Washington to examine cases of the phenomenon. One of the goals of the Anesthesia Awareness Campaign is to make brain activity monitoring a standard of care.
There has been controversy about the use of brain function monitors in general anesthesia. Advocates such as Dr. Barry Friedberg, anesthesiologist and founder of the nonprofit Goldilocks Anesthesia Foundation, say brain monitoring is essential for ensuring the patient achieves the appropriate sedation so as to not wake up. The monitors use a scale of 0 to 100 to reflect what's going on in the brain: 0 is a total absence of brain activity, 98 to 100 is wide awake, and 45 to 60 is about where general anesthesia puts the patient, Friedberg said.
But a 2008 study in the New England Journal of Medicine found no benefit in using brain function monitoring to prevent anesthesia awareness. The American Society of Anesthesiology has said the monitoring is not routinely indicated for general anesthesia, but may have some value and be appropriate for specific patients. The downsides are that they are expensive, and should not be used in place of heart rate and breathing signals when regulating the anesthesia.
Research does not consistently demonstrate a benefit from using brain function monitors, and the decision to use them should be made on an individual basis, Hannenberg said.
The anesthesiologist carefully monitors the patient's breathing and blood pressure, which can rise and fall, while the person is under the anesthetic, Hannenberg said. The treatment is tailored to the patient -- a young, healthy athlete will tolerate fluctuations in blood pressure better than someone with a serious condition, Hannenberg said.
As with surgical procedures themselves, anesthesia can result in stroke, heart attack and death. Such complications are more likely in people who have serious medical problems, and elderly people. Over the last two decades, anesthesiologists have made significant strides in reducing those risks, Hannenberg said.
A 6-year-old boy in Richmond, Virginia, recently died after going into cardiac arrest during a routine dental procedure that involved general anesthesia, CNN affiliate WTVR reported. Weiher had to have subsequent surgeries, including an operation on her other eye and a hysterectomy, and the experiences were terrifying. She is still taking medication for post-traumatic stress disorder as a result of her anesthesia awareness experience.
It's not that it would be terribly difficult to manufacture Sarin nerve gas. The small Aum Shinrikyo doomsday cult produced loads of it for attacks in Japan in the early 1990's. It's just that medieval Arabs are too stupid to handle it. They can't even do mustard gas for which the recipes are on the Internet. That saves European cities.
Northbrook, Illinois: Why I Study Duck Genitalia
Rosemarie T. Wells 1112 Rebecca Street Northbrook, IL 60062
Fox News and other conservative sites miss the point of basic science.
In the past few days, the Internet has been filled with commentary on whether the National Science Foundation should have paid for my study on duck genitalia, and 88.7 percent of respondents to a Fox news online poll agreed that studying duck genitalia is wasteful government spending. The commentary supporting and decrying the study continues to grow. As the lead investigator in this research, I would like to weigh in on the controversy and offer some insights into the process of research funding by the NSF.
My research on bird genitalia was originally funded in 2005, during the Bush administration. Thus federal support for this research cannot be connected exclusively to sequestration or the Obama presidency, as many of the conservative websites have claimed.
Since Sen. William Proxmire's Golden Fleece awards in the 1970s and 1980s, basic science projects are periodically singled out by people with political agendas to highlight how government “wastes” taxpayer money on seemingly foolish research. These arguments misrepresent the distinction between and the roles of basic and applied science. Basic science is not aimed at solving an immediate practical problem. Basic science is an integral part of scientific progress, but individual projects may sound meaningless when taken out of context. Basic science often ends up solving problems anyway, but it is just not designed for this purpose. Applied science builds upon basic science, so they are inextricably linked. As an example, Geckskin™ is a new adhesive product with myriad applications developed by my colleagues at the University of Massachusetts. Their work is based on several decades of basic research on gecko locomotion.
Whether the government should fund basic research in times of economic crisis is a valid question that deserves well-informed discourse comparing all governmental expenses. As a scientist, my view is that supporting basic and applied research is essential to keep the United States ahead in the global economy. The government cannot afford not to make that investment. In fact, I argue that research spending should increase dramatically for the United States to continue to lead the world in scientific discovery. Investment in the NSF is just over $20 per year per person, while it takes upward of $2,000 per year per person to fund the military. Basic research has to be funded by the government rather than private investors because there are no immediate profits to be derived from it.
Because the NSF budget is so small, and because we have so many well-qualified scientists in need of funds, competition to obtain grants is fierce, and funding rates at the time this research was funded had fallen well below 10 percent. Congress decides the total amount of money that the NSF gets from the budget, but it does not decide which individual projects are funded—and neither does the president or his administration. Funding decisions are made by panels of scientists who are experts in the field and based on peer review by outsiders, often the competitors of the scientists who submitted the proposal. The review panel ranks proposals on their intellectual merits and impacts to society before making a recommendation. This recommendation is then acted upon by program officers and other administrators, who are also scientists, at the NSF.
This brings us back to the ducks. Male ducks force copulations on females, and males and females are engaged in a genital arms race with surprising consequences. Male ducks have elaborate corkscrew-shaped penises, the length of which correlates with the degree of forced copulation males impose on female ducks. Females are often unable to escape male coercion, but they have evolved vaginal morphology that makes it difficult for males to inseminate females close to the sites of fertilization and sperm storage. Males have counterclockwise spiraling penises, while females have clockwise spiraling vaginas and blind pockets that prevent full eversion of the male penis.
Our latest study examined how the presence of other males influences genital morphology. My colleagues and I found that it does so to an amazing degree, demonstrating that male competition is a driving force behind these male traits that can be harmful to females. The fact that this grant was funded, after the careful scrutiny of many scientists and NSF administrators, reflects the fact that this research is grounded in solid theory and that the project was viewed as having the potential to move science forward (and it has), as well as fascinate and engage the public. The research has been reported on positively by hundreds of news sites in recent years, even Fox news. Most of the grant money was spent on salaries, putting money back into the economy.
The commentary and headlines in some of the recent articles reflect outrage that the study was about duck genitals, as if there is something inherently wrong or perverse with this line of research. Imagine if medical research drew the line at the belt! Genitalia, dear readers, are where the rubber meets the road, evolutionarily. To fully understand why some individuals are more successful than others during reproduction, there may be no better place to look. The importance of evolutionary research on other species’ genitalia to the medical field has been recently highlighted in the Journal of Sexual Medicine. Generating new knowledge of what factors affect genital morphology in ducks, one of the few vertebrate species other than humans that form pair bonds and exhibit violent sexual coercion, may have significant applied uses in the future, but we must conduct the basic research first. In the meantime, while we engage in productive and respectful discussion of how we envision the future of our nation, why not marvel at how evolution has resulted in such counterintuitive morphology and bizarre animal behavior.
Restore freedom: Liberty Dependeth on the Silence of the Law. Throw out most laws. Return responsibility to heads of families.
Miami, Florida: Queensland votes to equalise age of consent for all sexual acts
Jame N. Logue 370 Marigold Lane Miami, FL 33176
The age of consent for all sexual acts in Queensland will be standardised at 16 after the state’s parliament voted to lower the age of consent for anal sex from 18.
The criminal code will also be amended to replace references to “sodomy” with “anal intercourse” after the Queensland Aids Council said the former term had connotations of outdated laws and moral standards.
Queensland is the only state in Australia to have different legal ages of consent for anal and vaginal sex.
The health minister, Cameron Dick, said the amendments were aimed at improving sexual health.
“Too often the conversation about the age of consent has focused on morality and, worse still, on criminality,” he told parliament. “[With these amendments] we remove a discriminatory provision from our statute books and support the sexual health and wellbeing of young Queenslanders.”
The Liberal National party did not oppose the changes but expressed concerns about how young people would be educated about them.
“We do need certainty and clarity from the government as to how it will educate the 16 to 17-year-old cohort around these changes,” the opposition’s health spokesman, John-Paul Langbroek, said.
But the federal LNP Queensland backbencher George Christensen said on Facebook the change in the law opened the way for 16-year-olds to be “groomed” by much older men.
The Queensland Aids Council’s executive director, Michael Scott, welcomed the change, saying an unequal age of consent had been a barrier to equal access to healthcare.
“We are concerned that, with the current inequality of age of consent, young people who are sexually active are reluctant to access sexual health services including HIV and other STI testing and preventative health education for fear of being prosecuted,” he said.
Don't bother whether your sex is legal or illegal. Just go for it. Because the eternal life of your soul depends on whether your sex is good enough on earth.
Sandwich, Illinois: Mucuna pruriens Reduces Stress and Improves the Quality of Semen in Infertile Men
Matthew B. Carroll 4732 Arthur Avenue Sandwich, IL 60548
The present investigation was undertaken to assess the role of Mucuna pruriens in infertile men who were under psychological stress. Study included 60 subjects who were undergoing infertility screening and were found to be suffering from psychological stress, assessed on the basis of a questionnaire and elevated serum cortisol levels. Age-matched 60 healthy men having normal semen parameters and who had previously initiated at least one pregnancy were included as controls. Infertile subjects were administered with M. pruriens seed powder (5 g day−1) orally. For carrying out morphological and biochemical analysis, semen samples were collected twice, first before starting treatment and second after 3 months of treatment. The results demonstrated decreased sperm count and motility in subjects who were under psychological stress. Moreover, serum cortisol and seminal plasma lipid peroxide levels were also found elevated along with decreased seminal plasma glutathione (GSH) and ascorbic acid contents and reduced superoxide dismutase (SOD) and catalase activity. Treatment with M. pruriens significantly ameliorated psychological stress and seminal plasma lipid peroxide levels along with improved sperm count and motility. Treatment also restored the levels of SOD, catalase, GSH and ascorbic acid in seminal plasma of infertile men. On the basis of results of the present study, it may be concluded that M. pruriens not only reactivates the anti-oxidant defense system of infertile men but it also helps in the management of stress and improves semen quality.
Elizabethtown, Kentucky: Scrotox - An Idea That Is Just Nuts
Charles C. Thompson 1164 Broaddus Avenue Elizabethtown, KY 42701
When I posed an urgent medical question on Science 2.0 earlier this year, my expectations were very low: 1) Simply make an idiot out of myself, or 2) Make an idiot of myself, but at least give people a few yuks while doing so. However, dismissing "Old Man Balls: Fact or Fiction?" would turn out to be premature.
Who could have possibly known that only months later, a seminal moment that would provide an answer: Yes, OMBs are real. And there is a solution, at least for those of us who are deranged enough to try to do something that would seem to be rather unpleasant.
Jason Emer, M.D, a surgeon in Beverly Hills (as if it could be anywhere else?) has noted a rising demand for cosmetic penile procedures. OK, if the damn thing looks like a gummy worm, fine, do something, but the variety of procedures that men are willing to undergo just to beef up the appearance of Lord Hardwicke a little bit is truly hair-raising.
These include fat injections, laser hair removal, shock treatment (don't know what that is, but it is unlikely to be pleasant). Scrotal hair removal by laser would seem to be a pretty sure bet to be on a man's "Things I am not going to do in this lifetime" list, but this turns out to be false. It is quite popular. And, once you know the following, how could it not be?
Dr. Emer reports that "The skin was less wrinkly, it was smoother, and some even reported it wasn’t as veiny.” Talk about vain. So, it is safe to say that penile enhancement procedures have always aroused considerable interest, and that this trend is likely to be lengthy; it will have real staying power.
But of all the procedures that stick out, perhaps none can elicit as much of a response as the new kid on the block—Botox injections into the scrotum for the sole purpose of whipping gravity. Yep- if you want help with your dangling participles, fear not—you are no longer in a pickle.
Dr. Emer is evaluating the use of Botox injections to the genitals, which he claims "decreases sweating, improves wrinkling and may, in some cases make the scrotum appear larger by relaxing the muscles in the area." He says that this can be a real pleasure to athletes, especially marathon runners "who get inner thigh rubbing and irritation from sweat."
As splendid as that sounds, this remains a deeply personal choice, since few of us have much interest in the diameter of our orbs, and are perfectly content with using baby powder on those bad boys. But, if this is your bag, I would urge you to go for it. And I wish you and Dr. Emer well. So much so that I have designed his first ad—no strings attached. And this operation does seems legit. It's no seedy operations, so you won't have to worry about getting shafted.
Amasa, Michigan: Texas man, 56, with long history of 'deviant sex acts' with children's clothing and VEGETABLES is sentenced to life in prison for meth possession
Jordan J. Vaughn 2463 Pinewood Avenue Amasa, MI 49903
A Texas man who had been previously convicted for nine felony offenses and had a history of 'deviant sex acts' with children's clothing and vegetables was sentenced to life in prison for being in possession of meth and tampering with evidence.
Charles Robert Ransier, 56, was found by a Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) Trooper wearing only jeans and had melted candle wax on his chest on March 23, 2015, according to a news release from the Comal County district attorney’s office.
His truck was parked near a children's slide as the deputy noticed the slide to be out of place while driving in northern Comal County.
The trooper approached Ransier and noticed he had a girl's swimsuit 'laid out perfectly' on the driver's side floorboard inside the truck. He also noticed melted candle wax inside and a tube of lubricant on the dashboard.
Upon asking for permission to search his car, the trooper said the 56-year-old tried to break a syringe he had in his hands, according to the document.
The syringe tested positive for traces of meth by the DPS lab in Austin, the news release said.
Ransier's truck was searched again after his arrest and authorities found more children's clothing, candy, balloons, Barbie dolls, baby oil, Viagra, Extenze male enhancement, rope, duct tape and a cooler with frozen cucumbers, according to officials.
It took less than 30 minutes for the jury to convict Ransier, and they sentenced him to life in prison for the tampering with physical evidence charge and 20 years in prison for possessing less than a gram of methamphetamine.
The jury also imposed a $10,000 fine on Ransier, who has a lengthy criminal history.
Ransier was found naked by authorities on November 10, 2012 on Word Ranch Road in New Braunfels, and he admitted to committing a 'deviant sex act involving a squash'.
He was found naked again, but wearing women's stockings, on March 9, 2014 at a baseball field where he was engaging in a deviant sex act with a vegetable.
Ransier also was convicted in 1995 of manslaughter in the death of an Arizona state trooper.
He was driving high on meth when he struck Sgt. Mark Dyer, who had stopped a speeding motorist on the side of Interstate 10.
The 56-year-old served 15 years in prison for that conviction.
We, the elite, want all young beautiful women for us. Better not to tax alcohol and tobacco, as it removes low-quality men from the sexual arena. Also give them street drugs to ruin their health and lives.
Grand Rapids, Michigan: Got the balls? Men are super-sizing their testicles with this bizarre new procedure
Henry S. Turner 3339 Cottonwood Lane Grand Rapids, MI 49507
Most lads worry about the look and feel of their penis, which can make them less confident in the sack. But now men are shifting attention away from their schlongs and towards their scrotums.
A certain testicle-boosting injection is the latest cosmetic surgery fad that lads are flocking to have – and forking over £2,800 in the process.
The procedure involves squirting botox into the scrotum – leading the trend to be dubbed “scrotox” and “balltox” – in a bid to get a lower hanging and more relaxed-looking ballsack.
Scrotox doesn’t just decrease sweating and reduce the wrinkled appearance of lads’ testicles, it also boosts their size.
It seems men are paying more and more attention to their looks and the number of guys going under the knife in the quest for beauty has doubled in the last decade.
But scrotox isn’t the only bizarre cosmetic operation to hit the market, with men also seeking to increase their girth down below by injecting their own fat into their schlongs.
The procedure takes around 45 minutes and will set you back £4,500 but you have abstain from sex for six weeks to let the penis heal.
As for the results of the manhood makeover, don’t expect to stretch more than one inch wider than you were before.
Speaking exclusively to Dailystar.co.uk, certified plastic surgeon Dr David Alessi explained the long-term effects of the procedure are often less than desirable.
“Unfortunately, upwards of 90% of men are dissatisfied with the results,” he said.
The medic, who founded the Alessi Institutes and Face Forward, a charity offering free procedures for victims of domestic abuse, warned that lads’ obsession with penis size could be a symptom of a serious psychological problem.
He said: “Most men who think they have a small penis actually don’t.
"Studies vary, but research suggests that the average erect penis ranges from under five inches to just under six inches.
“Most men who think their penis is too small have penis dysmorphic syndrome and would be better off seeing a shrink and not a surgeon.”
Feminism in Europe makes second-generation male Muslim immigrants suicide bombers. Up to now it's only explosives. But a poison gas attack isn't far away.
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