Flu Vaccine is as good as placebo

As pointed out via LewRockwell site: "Flu vaccines 'not worth the trouble'"
But according to Tom Jefferson, a vaccines expert, vaccines given to children under 2 have the same effect as if they were given a dummy drug. He is calling for an urgent re-evaluation of vaccination campaigns.

Writing in the British Medical Journal, he says that because influenza viruses mutate and vary from year to year, it is difficult for scientists to study the precise effects of vaccines and that most existing studies are of poor quality.

A year later: Moving On Update

It's been about one year since we decided to move out of Austin, TX. So today, we are trying to settle down in a city in Southern California [San Bernardino County is as detailed as I'll get on this blog]. I also took up a job as a web programmer and fortunately we were able to find a rental where I can walk to work. We have settled with a local church but I'm not completely satisfied (see my other blog as to why).

I miss all my friends in Austin, of course, but I'm in the process of making new ones both at work and at church. The one new hobby I did pick up was to start boogie boarding with my two sons. We bought 3 sets of wet suits and boogie boards and go out to beach whenever we visit my parents. In fact, just yesterday we went twice: once in the morning and once in the late afternoon. One trick we learned is we have to fight the waves with as empty stomach as possible or else one can swallow too much salt water and get sick quickly [I'm getting better at avoiding wipeouts but I cannot completely prevent water being forced into my stomach]. Also drink plenty of fluids about an hour before you go (it sounds gross but when you're freezing out in the cold Pacific Ocean, it sure feels good to warm up a bit by releasing natural body fluid inside the wet. We've pretty much settled at one beach that's not too far from my parents' with ample free street parking with plenty of wave: when we went boogie boarding one early weekday morning [7:30AM Thursday] and saw dozens of surfers, we knew we were at the right spot!

Copyright 2006, DannyHSDad, All Rights Reserved.


More comparisons of HR 5122

At /. in the H.R.5122, John Warner National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2007 discussion, megaditto posts:

1) In 1933 "terrorists" destroyed German Reichstag [wikipedia.org]

2) To begin war on terror, the German "Patriot" act [wikipedia.org] was passed getting rid of habeas corpus
US. Patriot Act

3) The German congress passed the Enabling Act [wikipedia.org] to help the president's "war on terror".
The HR 5122 (PDF)

4) Hitler consumated the powers granted to him by the Congress through this legal process.
how long?

Copyright 2006, DannyHSDad, All Rights Reserved.


Bush Signs Enablement of Martial Law

The /. article "Bush Signs Bill Enabling Martial Law" has geeks and nerds discussing new law Bush put in place, as detailed in this link (you can read the whole thing here H.R.5122, John Warner National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2007) and put side by side with 3rd Reich's Enabling Act:

(1) IN GENERAL.--Section 333 of title 10, United States Code, is amended to read as follows:

" 333. Major public emergencies; interference with State and Federal law

(1) The President may employ the armed forces, including the National Guard in Federal service, to--
"(A) restore public order and enforce the laws of the United States when, as a result of a natural disaster, epidemic, or other serious public health emergency, terrorist attack or incident, or other condition in any State or possession of the United States, the President determines that--

"(i) domestic violence has occurred to such an extent that the constituted authorities of the State or possession are incapable of maintaining public order; and

"(ii) such violence results in a condition described in paragraph (2); or

"(B) suppress, in a State, any insurrection, domestic violence, unlawful combination, or conspiracy if such insurrection, violation, combination, or conspiracy results in a condition described in paragraph (2).

"(2) A condition described in this paragraph is a condition that-- "(A) so hinders the execution of the laws of a State or possession, as applicable, and of the United States within that State or possession, that any part or class of its people is deprived of a right, privilege, immunity, or protection named in the Constitution and secured by law, and the constituted authorities of that State or possession are unable, fail, or refuse to protect that right, privilege, or immunity, or to give that protection; or

"(B) opposes or obstructs the execution of the laws of the United States or impedes the course of justice under those laws.

"(3) In any situation covered by paragraph (1)(B), the State shall be considered to have denied the equal protection of the laws secured by the Constitution.

"(b) NOTICE TO CONGRESS.--The President shall notify Congress of the determination to exercise the authority in subsection (a)(1)(A) as soon as practicable after the determination and every 14 days thereafter during the duration of the exercise of that authority.".

(2) PROCLAMATION TO DISPERSE.--Section 334 of such title is amended by inserting "or those obstructing the enforcement of the laws" after "insurgents".

(3) HEADING AMENDMENT.--The heading of chapter 15 of such title is amended to read as follows:


(4) CLERICAL AMENDMENTS.--(A) The tables of chapters at the beginning of subtitle A of title 10, United States Code, and at the beginning of part I of such subtitle, are each amended by striking the item relating to chapter 15 and inserting the following new item:

"15 Enforcement of the Laws to Restore Public Order ... 331".

(B) The table of sections at the beginning of chapter 15 of such title is amended by striking the item relating to sections 333 and inserting the following new item:

"333. Major public emergencies; interference with State and Federal law.".


(1) IN GENERAL.--Chapter 152 of such title is amended by adding at the end the following new section:

" 2567. Supplies, services, and equipment: provision in major public emergencies

"(a) PROVISION AUTHORIZED.--In any situation in which the President determines to exercise the authority in section 333(a)(1)(A) of this title, the President may direct the Secretary of Defense to provide supplies, services, and equipment to persons affected by the situation.

"(b) COVERED SUPPLIES, SERVICES, AND EQUIPMENT.--The supplies, services, and equipment provided under this section may include food, water, utilities, bedding, transportation, tentage, search and rescue, medical care, minor repairs, the removal of debris, and other assistance necessary for the immediate preservation of life and property.

"(c) LIMITATIONS.--(1) Supplies, services, and equipment may be provided under this section--

"(A) only to the extent that the constituted authorities of the State or possession concerned are unable to provide such supplies, services, and equipment, as the case may be; and

"(B) only until such authorities, or other departments or agencies of the United States charged with the provision of such supplies, services, and equipment, are able to provide such supplies, services, and equipment.

"(2) The Secretary may provide supplies, services, and equipment under this section only to the extent that the Secretary determines that doing so will not interfere with military preparedness or ongoing military operations or functions.

"(d) INAPPLICABILITY OF CERTAIN AUTHORITIES.--The provision of supplies, services, or equipment under this section shall not be subject to the provisions of section 403(c) of the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act (42 U.S.C. 5170b(c)).".

(2) CLERICAL AMENDMENT.--The table of sections at the beginning of such chapter is amended by adding at the end the following new item:

"2567. Supplies, services, and equipment: provision in major public emergencies".

(c) CONFORMING AMENDMENT.--Section 12304(c)(1) of such title is amended by striking "No unit" and all that follows through "subsection (b)," and inserting "Except to perform any of the functions authorized by chapter 15 or section 12406 of this title or by subsection (b), no unit or member of a reserve component may be ordered to active duty under this section".

Law to Remedy the Distress of the People and the Reich

The Reichstag has enacted the following law, which is hereby proclaimed with the assent of the Reichsrat, it having been established that the requirements for a constitutional amendment have been fulfilled:

Article 1

In addition to the procedure prescribed by the constitution, laws of the Reich may also be enacted by the government of the Reich. This includes the laws referred to by Articles 85 Paragraph 2 and Article 87 of the constitution.

Article 2

Laws enacted by the government of the Reich may deviate from the constitution as long as they do not affect the institutions of the Reichstag and the Reichsrat. The rights of the President remain undisturbed.

Article 3

Laws enacted by the Reich government shall be issued by the Chancellor and announced in the Reich Gazette. They shall take effect on the day following the announcement, unless they prescribe a different date. Articles 68 to 77 of the Constitution do not apply to laws enacted by the Reich government.

Article 4

Treaties of the Reich with foreign states which affect matters of Reich legislation shall not require the approval of the bodies of the legislature. The government of the Reich shall issue the regulations required for the execution of such treaties.

Article 5

This law takes effect with the day of its proclamation. It loses force on 1 April 1937 or if the present Reich government is replaced by another.

Kind of interesting to see how the more liberal-leaning geeks are grokking the need of the 2nd amendment to protect people from the state (both local and Federal Government).

Copyright 2006, DannyHSDad, All Rights Reserved.


"No Child Left Behind"'s real purpose: Bush coffers

"Bush's family profits from 'No Child' act" starts off with:
A company headed by President Bush's brother and partly owned by his parents is benefiting from Republican connections and federal dollars targeted for economically disadvantaged students under the No Child Left Behind Act.
Now it makes sense why Bush pushed this act! It's not about children afterall: it's all about money!

Sigh. Children are so messed up in the public school system....


Late Blooming Genius

Key Words in "Keep Plugging Away" points to an article by Wired on two kinds of genius:
  1. the conceptualist who peaks in the twenties [or so] and then declines
  2. the experimentalist who peaks late in life, progressively getting better and better.
For me personally, I guess there is still hope that I am a genius after all: we'll see in 10 or 20 years from now. [ha ha.]

Seriously, most parents think that their child is the next conceptualist genius and/or Nobel prize front runner but in reality, what parents need to do is sit back and teach [and live] the principle of never giving up since some will bloom later rather than sooner, as long as they don't quit. It's easy to point to a young hot shot [and get touted as the next child prodigy] but in this world there are many who were successful late in their life even though they were nobodies early in their years. People like Sam Walton [founded Walmart in his 40's] and Moses [became a prophet at 80] bloomed late. Even Jesus Christ, the founder of Christianity, kept quiet during His teen years and His twenties [13-29]: He started His mission after turning 30.

Copyright 2006, DannyHSDad, All Rights Reserved.


DNA: XY or XX isn't necessarily gender selector

I heard it on radio last night and googled news but only found one link "Gender gene identified: Mutation that caused skin disease is found by scientists to determine whether embryo will develop a uterus."

You can have XX chromosome [normally female] and still become full, real man:
With two copies of the X sex gene, these brothers and the other man in the study should have been female. But nothing about them indicated that they were anything other than male. They grew from boys into men and each married. But they were all sterile and at high risk for skin cancer.
My wife brought out an interesting idea: maybe there is a gay gene after all [e.g., XX males having interest in XY (or XX) men]! Very interesting study....

Copyright 2006, DannyHSDad, All Rights Reserved.


Why owning a home is also throwing money away

Here's my comment on "Buying vs Renting" at John Chow's blog [with added personal details below]:

Some legal facts: In America, you never really own your home. If you don't pay your taxes, you will lose your home [by force if necessary], guaranteed. Also, thanks to rather recent U.S. Supreme Court ruling (Kelo vs New London), a majority vote by your neighbors is enough to take your land away, willy-nilly.

After paying Caesar, the homeowner isn't done since homes require maintenance: from the yard to various stuff which fall apart (roof, privacy fence, paint, water heater, A/C, etc.) which the owner has to eat [i.e., cannot be used to adjust the cost basis of the home per IRS instruction].

And then there are the repairs you must do like water leak, broken plumbing, electrical shorts, etc.

And then there's risk management and paying for various hazard insurance [talk about "throwing money away"]. In the US, earthquake and flooding insurances are extra and costs an arm and a leg.

And for newer homes, there is also the HomeOwner's Association or HOA which "manages" the community's look and feel [like approving remodeling or enforcing the grass height of the front lawn]. And they require annual if not monthly fees.

And some newer homes also require special fees to get firefighters to cover out-of-city-limit homes. This was a case in Central Texas when some owners found out that their fires couldn't be put out by local firefighters...

All the fees above are paid by homeowners but not the renters. [You can try to pass them all onto the renters but rent is dictated by the market not the owner's cost (problems).]


As for mortgage: it means "death pledge." Enough said!!

We owned two homes in the past [first was from 1995 to 2002 and second one from 2002 to 2005] and we did poorly: not only did we pay lots of money of the above fees but we also remodelled our first home before we sold [so we didn't get to enjoy it as much] and even though we made some profit on our first home, our second home lost us a lot of money so our net result was a big negative [enough money to buy a new car]. So, our home "investing" venture hasn't work out well for us. Anyway, we rent today and live debt free!

[On the other hand, we've been blessed with our stock investments so I can't complain....]


Tax Revolt in the making

LA Times has:
Private-Sector Anger Builds as Public Pension Costs Rise: Lawmakers feel the heat from taxpayers who see their own benefits wither, and traditional payouts give way to 401(k)-style plans.
Underfunded pensions' rate is currently at 84% for the states and who knows how many for county and city retirees. As market turns negative, like the hedge fund melt down (which is worse than what they reported before and in fact being liquidated) and the underfunding may turn out to be worse than what are currently being acknowledged.

And what are being [or will be done] to cover the short fall? Do they cut back on the spending? No, instead, the state and local taxes (including property taxes) will be increased to cover the needed money. Some people are trying to push back on the tax increase but municipal unions and retirees are tough nut to crack [they tend to be vocal and strong and esp. retirees have the time to have their say], so some forms of tax increase will take place eventually.

Tax revolt anyone?