Serious Issues…

Grind for May 8th, 2017

FIRST SIP:
“To me, the smell of fresh-made coffee is one of the greatest inventions.”
– Hugh Jackman


WAKE UP AND SMELL THE COFFEE

The Headline

Sexual assault is an ongoing problem within America’s military

The Grind

According to US defense officials, 2016 marked an increase in the number of sexual assaults within the military. Even worse, more than 50% of victims said they received negative reactions for their complains.

The Defense Department has spent years trying to encourage victims to speak up about harassment and sexual assault – but these are still highly underreported crimes.

The Data

The Pentagon currently uses anonymous surveys to track unwanted sexual assault within the military. Data shows 6,083 reported cases in 2015 and 6,172 reported cases in 2016.

Breaking down the numbers by military branch shows:

  • A 5% increase in the Navy
  • A 3% increase in the Air Force
  • A slight decrease in the Marine Corps and the Army


RAND Corporation study conducted two years ago shows that nearly 60% of sexual assault victims faced retaliation from commanders or peers.

Retaliation can be difficult to determine. The Defense Department seeks to distinguish between workplace retribution and social snubs that can be offensive but are not illegal.

In the study mentioned above, only 32% of victims described situations that could legally be considered retribution.

To better understand, officials have “added more questions and analysis to eliminate instances when commanders make adjustments or transfer victims to protect them, as opposed to punishing them or pressuring them to drop criminal proceedings,” reports Military.com




FEELING BUZZED

The Headline

Is our universe just one of many? This space anomaly could be the first evidence of the multiverse.

The Grind

Unless you’re a science fiction fan, you might not be familiar with the term “multiverse” – a word that refers to a world in which our universe isn’t the only one (think parallel universe).

For years, scientists have struggled to understand the “Cold Spot” – a space anomaly that stretches across a distance of about 1.8 billion light-years.

The Cold Spot is less than 1 degree colder than its surroundings, which initially led scientists to believe that it had less matter than other sections of space. They called it a “supervoid.”

What Does it Mean?

A recent publication by the Royal Astronomical Society (RAS) insists that such a “supervoid” could not exist.

Scientists now believe that galaxies within the Cold Spot are bunched around smaller voids that populate the area like bubbles. These smaller voids do not explain the difference in temperature.

“Our data place powerful constraints on any attempt” to link the smaller voids to the temperature difference, explains RAS researcher Ruari Mackenzie.

According to RAS simulations, the probability that the Cold Spot formed randomly is just 2%.

“This means we can’t entirely rule out that the Spot is caused by an unlikely fluctuation explained by the standard model,” says RAS researcher Tom Shanks.

“But if that isn’t the answer, then there are more exotic explanations. Perhaps the most exciting of these is that the Cold Spot was caused by a collision between our universe and another bubble universe.”




GOOD TO THE LAST DROP:
Did you know…
The can opener was invented 48 years after the can.


To Infinity and Beyond!

Grind for May 7th, 2017

FIRST SIP:
“Coffee is the common man’s gold, and like gold, it brings to every person the feeling of luxury and nobility.”
– Sheik-Abd-al-Kadir


THAT’S NOT WHAT I ORDERED

The Headline

Facebook is conducting emotion-based research to take advantage of vulnerable users

The Grind

Most people don’t think twice before posting personal feelings on Facebook. After all, we’re just sharing our thoughts with our friends.

The online advertising industry is worth about $80 billion, and Facebook is the second largest player (following Google).

We already know that Facebook collects immense amounts of data about its users. According to a secret document leaked by The Australian on May 1st, the social media site is conducting “sentiment analysis” research in order to take advantage of young users’ insecurities in the interest of boosting ad revenue.

The document reveals how close monitoring can pinpoint people who feel “stressed,” “overwhelmed,” “defeated,” “anxious,” “stupid,” “nervous,” and “useless.”

Nothing is Private

Facebook has admitted that this sort of research is inappropriate, but argues that the “data on which this research is based was aggregated and presented consistent with applicable privacy and legal protections, including the removal of personally identifiable information.”

The leaked document shows Facebook has been refining its “sentiment analysis” to gain useful data on young New Zealanders and Australian users in high school and college.

According to the secret document, “Monday-Thursday is about building confidence; the weekend is for broadcasting achievements.”

Look through your Facebook feed and you’ll find this to be true of many users.




TRYING SOMETHING NEW

The Headline

NASA and ESA make concrete plans to look for alien life on Europa

The Grind

Europa is one of the 60+ moons known to orbit Jupiter. Beneath its icy surface lies a vast subterranean sea estimated to be twice as large as those on Earth.

Where you find liquid water, you generally find life. Scientists have agreed that Europa’s massive ocean is one of the best places in our solar system to look for alien life.

NASA has teamed up with the European Space Agency (ESA) to do just that. “The whole idea is that if we think exploring Europa for life is important, it should be an international adventure,” says French astrophysicist Michel Blanc. “The ultimate goal is to get to the surface and look for biosignatures of life.”

The Mission

The “Joint Europa Mission” (JEM) will begin in the mid 2020s. It will take about five years to reach Europa, after which the orbiter craft would eject a lander that could explore the moon’s surface for about a month.

In the meantime, the orbiter craft would continue to collect data about the Europa’s structure and composition for about three months before crash-landing on the moon’s surface.

“There’s great enthusiasm for this on both sides,” says NASA’s Jakob van Zyl. “The budget request is now with the president.”




GOOD TO THE LAST DROP:
Did you know…
The average person spends three years of his or her life on a toilet.


Water You Doing?!

Grind for May 6th, 2017

FIRST SIP:
“I was taken by the power that savoring a simple cup of coffee can have to connect people and create community.”
– Howard Schultz


DEPRESSO

The Headline

Inquest jury investigates rare dehydration death in Milwaukee County Jail

The Grind

Terrill Thomas suffers from bipolar disorder. He was arrested in April 2016 after he shot a bystander and then fired two shots inside a casino.

Thomas, 38, was having delusions, shouting, and singing when he arrived at the Milwaukee County Jail. His family says he was off his medication and in the throes of a mental breakdown.

Officials put him in solitary confinement and turned off his water after he flooded a jail cell. Inmates are supposed to get out of their cells for at least 1 hour a day, but Thomas was left alone, without water, for 7 days.

Thomas died of dehydration despite attempts by multiple inmates to get guards to help him. The Milwaukee County Sheriff has been strangely silent about the ordeal.

Repercussions

An inquest jury has recommended charges against 7 prison employees under a felony statue that prohibits abuse and neglect of inmates.

The investigation uncovered jail records showing that Milwaukee employees punished two other inmates by shutting off their water supply after they broke the rules by covering up their windows.

District Attorney John Chisholm is expected to press charges soon.

In my opinion, these blatant acts of neglect (for which no employees have been fired) are just as bad as the crime for which Thomas was arrested.




SO MANY BLENDS, SO LITTLE TIME

The Headline

Apple has a staggering amount of money in the bank; about 93% is offshore

The Grind

Apple has an estimated $250 billion in the bank. This is more than any other company in recent US history. Heck, it’s more than the foreign cash reserves of Canada and the UK combined.

Over 90% of that money is kept overseas.

President Trump has proposed a special “tax holiday” as well as a significantly lower corporate tax rate to encourage companies like Apple to bring that money back into the US.

Apple CEO Tim Cook says he might move some of that cash back to the US if the conditions are right.

What’s Next?

Apple might decide to bring that money back into the US by delivering huge dividends to shareholders. The company currently owes its shareholders $88 billion.

Despite that debt, Apple still has more money than any other company. To give you an idea, Microsoft comes in second place with $126 billion (not including debt).

Another way to bring money into the US is to buy out another massive company. Capital managers told the Wall Street Journal that Apple could buy a company like Netflix, Tesla, or even Walt Disney.




GOOD TO THE LAST DROP:
Did you know…
When Twister was introduced in 1966, it was denounced by critics as “sex in a box.”


Breaking News!

Grind for May 5th, 2017

FIRST SIP:
Good communication is just as stimulating as black coffee, and just as hard to sleep after.
-Anne Morrow Lindbergh


A GLASS A DAY KEEPS THE DOCTOR AWAY

The Headline

Champagne’s Surprising Health Benefits

Did You Know?

Most of us see champagne as a celebratory drink, but this bubbly New Year’s favorite can actually be good for your health – as long as you don’t overindulge.

Most of the benefits below come from the two red grapes – Pinot Meunier and Pinot Noir – used to make champagne.

Drink Up

1. Experiments with rats show that moderate consumption of champagne (about 3 glasses per week) has been shown to improve memory.

2. Like red wine, champagne is good for your heart. The antioxidants found in red grapes (polyphenols) can prevent heart problems and lower blood pressure.

3. Champagne is good for your waistline. It has fewer calories than wine or beer.

4. It gets you drunk faster. This can be a good or a bad thing, depending on the situation.

5. Don’t be afraid to shake and pop – champagne is good for your skin. The antioxidants and tartaric acid in champagne can help even out skin tone and prevent breakouts.




THAT’S NOT WHAT I ORDERED

The Headline

New York Times hires climate change skeptic; loses subscribers

The Grind

In an effort to broaden its content and attract a wider audience, the New York Times hired conservative pundit, former Wall Street Journal writer, and notable climate change skeptic Bret Stephens.

His debut op-ed, in which he dares question the “consensus” on anthropogenic climate change, has liberal readers boycotting the Times.

Stephens’ article is a comment on certainty. He compares scientists’ warnings about global warming to the media’s firm belief that Hillary Clinton would win the election.

“There’s a lesson here. We live in a world in which data convey authority. But authority has a way of descending to certitude, and certitude begets hubris.”

Repercussions

Stephens’ article has received backlash not only from liberal readers, but from climate scientists as well.

Stefan Rahmstorf, head of Earth System Analysis at the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research, says he enjoys reading “different opinions,” but that global warming isn’t a “matter of different opinions.”

I guess Rahmstorf is part of the so-called “consensus.”

When I say “consensus,” I am referring to the oft-stated claim that 97% of climate change scientists believe human behavior has contributed to global warming.

I agree with New York Times editorial page editor James Bennet in his defense of Stephens:

“To pretend like the views of a thinker like Bret, and the millions of people who agree with him on a range of issues, should simply be ignored, that they’re outside the bounds of reasonable debate, is a really dangerous form of delusion.”




GOOD TO THE LAST DROP:
Did you know…
Walt Disney, the creator of Mickey Mouse, was afraid of mice.


Evolution Of Artificial Intelligence…

Grind for May 4th, 2017

FIRST SIP:
“Only an idiot would rely on the energy of a bean or a leaf to stay awake throughout the day.”

    – Tahereh Mafi



ESPRESSO YOURSELF

The Headline

“Yes California” leader abandons CalExit movement and heads to Russia

The Grind

Louis Marinelli, founder of “Yes California” and leader of the CalExit ballot initiative, has announced that he is giving up.

“As I have stated in the past, I do not wish to live under the American flag,” wrote Marinelli in his April 17th farewell letter. “I had long planned to eventually return to occupied California and struggle for her independence from the US so we could build the kind of country that reflects our progressive values.”

Marinelli has largely operated his secession campaign from an office in Yekaterinburg, Russia, but he was always planning to return to California.

“I have found in Russia a new happiness, a life without the albatross of frustration and resentment towards ones’ homeland, and a future detached from the partisan divisions and animosity that has thus far engulfed by entire adult life.”

Marinelli says he will return to California, but only if the state secedes from the union. “Until then, I will continue to serve as the representative of the Republic of California to Russia.”

Background

Marinelli founded “Yes California” in 2014. Last November, the separatist group filed papers in an attempt to collect enough signatures to put a secession measure on the 2018 ballot.

They would have needed 585,407 signatures, but Ruiz Evans (who picked up the torch after Marinelli left the movement) has officially withdrawn the proposed ballot measure.

Democratic Party leaders in California are urging Evans not to resurrect the movement later this year, as he plans to do.

It’s unlikely that a CalExit initiative will ever make it onto the ballot, let alone be approved. And as Constitutional experts point out, the Constitution does not include guidelines on how to leave the union.




TAKE TIME TO SMELL THE COFFEE

The Headline

Warrior Poets is making a documentary about the evolution of human intelligence (HI) and artificial intelligence (AI)

AI Research

More and more scientists are pursing the idea of merging a human mind with a computer (like in the 2014 movie Transcendence) or of using technology to increase our mental capacity.

Through his new company Neuralink, Elon Musk is working on solutions to correct traumatic brain injuries and increase human intelligence.

Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg is working on a brain interface that will enable users to communicate via thought.

Bryan Johnson, creator of Kernel, has invested $100 million in an effort to make our neural code programmable.

Morgan Spurlock’s production company “Warrior Poets” has teamed up with Futurism Studios to track these projects in a documentary currently called “The Untitled Human Intelligence Project.”

The Project

Spurlock’s documentary will investigate the ways HI and AI are evolving and will focus on how technology might one day allow us to increase our intelligence in ways that older generations never dreamed of.

The majority of the film will consist of interviews with engineers and neuroscience experts as they seek to answer some of the toughest questions associated with HI/AI research, such as:

  • Can technology allow us to improve our capacity to cooperate, love, and feel empathy?
  • How do we overcome wealth inequality to make augmentation available to all?
  • In a future of cyborgs, what does it really mean to be human?


“Imagine a future where you could eliminate depression without taking a pill, instantly learn a foreign language, or communicate with loved ones telepathically. While this may sound like a sci-fi novel, it may be our not-so-distant future,” says Spurlock.




GOOD TO THE LAST DROP:
Did you know…
One in every 4 Americans has appeared on television!


Have You No Shame?!

Grind for May 3rd, 2017

FIRST SIP:
“A morning coffee is my favorite way of starting the day, settling the nerves so that they don’t later fray.”
– Marcia Carrington


THIS IS AWKWARD

The Headline

Ty Tashiro’s book AWKWARD: The Science of Why We’re Socially Awkward and Why That’s Awesome sheds some light on why humans are so awkward.

Reactions

Everyone experiences embarrassment and awkwardness, some of us more often than others.

In most cases, our emotional responses are reflexive and involuntary.

According to Charles Darwin, this is a survival instinct.

For example, feelings of anger are accompanied by an increase in blood flow and muscle tension that gets you ready to fight.
Feelings of awkwardness, which generally occur after a social faux pas, cause physiological reactions like quickened breathing, a pounding heart, and tensed muscles.

What Does It All Mean?

If anger prepares your body to fight and fear prepares your body to run, what does feeling awkward do?

According to Tashiro, the need to belong to a group is an essential part of our well-being. Too many violations of social rules can lead to exile, so our minds respond very strongly when social expectations are unmet.

According to June Price Tangney, a Psych professor at Virginia’s George Mason University, social mistakes lead to a set of emotions: embarrassment, guilt, and shame. Each of these feelings has a different way of showing other people that we are aware of our mistake and that we feel bad about inconveniencing others.

For example, showing guilt (i.e. picking up a mess you made) shows others that you understand what you have done wrong and are taking actions to fix it.




FEELING BUZZED

The Headline

Pharmaceutical company bribes doctors to prescribe addictive painkillers and funds anti-marijuana campaign while developing THC drug

The Crime

Last year, the FBI arrested six former Insys Therapeutics executives for “leading a nationwide conspiracy to bribe medical practitioners to unnecessarily prescribe a fentanyl-based pain medication and defraud healthcare insurers.” Fentanyl is 50x stronger than heroin.

As reported by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, Insys Therapeutics gave $6.3 million to doctors in 2015 – with some practitioners accepting over $100,000 each.

The Arizona-based company saw a 41% decline in revenue after the scandal became public, but this is little solace for those became addicted.

Hypocrisy

Insys also donated $500,000 to a smear campaign against marijuana legalization in Arizona, a move which no doubt played a role in the state’s failure to pass the marijuana initiative on the 2016 ballot.

At the same time, the company was using THC to develop a new synthetic drug called “Syndros.” The DEA approved production of the drug last month.

So while smoking a joint in many states is a crime, Insys is producing and selling weed’s most psychoactive component in its purest form.

“There’s this misconception that illicit markets are run by dangerous criminals, while prescription markets are run by responsible business people, when the truth is that these are not mutually exclusive classifications,” explains Amanda Reiman, former manager of marijuana law and policy at the Drug Policy Alliance.

“Insys has made their money off peddling an extremely dangerous drug, so the idea that they somehow now have this benevolent motivation to provide cannabinoid medication to the public is just a horse and pony show meant to usher in the pharmaceuticalization of cannabis.”




GOOD TO THE LAST DROP:
Did you know…
The original name for the butterfly was ‘flutterby’!


Biobags: The New Solution To Premature Birth??

Grind for May 2nd, 2017

FIRST SIP:
“I don’t really like coffee, she said, but I don’t really like it when my head hits my desk when I fall asleep either.”
– Brian Andreas


DEJA BREW

The Headline

Scientists successfully grow sheep in external wombs

The Grind

In a groundbreaking experiment, scientists took 8 prematurely delivered lambs and placed them into artificial wombs – called “Biobags” – to continue growth.

The bag is filled with an electrolyte solution (similar to amniotic fluid) that enables natural growth.

The lamb receives nutrients and oxygen by way of a pumpless circulatory system created by fetal surgeon Alan Flake and his team of researchers.

The lambs were switched to regular ventilators after four weeks and then euthanized. Flake’s team reports that the lamb’s brains and lungs had developed normally.

Flake’s study and its results were published in Nature Communications.

The Implication

Premature birth is the leading cause of death for newborns. In the US, about 10% of babies are born prematurely – before they reach week 37.

Flake’s device has only been tested on sheep, but scientists hope it will one day be able to help bring premature human babies to term outside the mother’s uterus.

Flake reminds us that the Biobag is only designed to be used during the final weeks or months of pregnancy:

“It’s complete science fiction to think that you can take an embryo and get it through the early developmental process and put it on our machine without the mother being the critical element there.”

Flake hopes to test the Biobags on human fetuses in three years.




FEELING BUZZED

The Headline

Jeff Sessions’ War on Weed

Everyone Wants It

The latest polls show that roughly 60% of Americans are in favor of full marijuana legalization. According to CBS, a staggering 88% of Americans believe people should be able to get it with a doctor’s prescription.

But unfortunately for us, America’s chief law enforcement officer doesn’t agree with the rest of the country. In fact, Attorney General Jeff Sessions is planning to launch what the Washington Post calls a “1980s-style War on Drugs.”

Old School Views

Sessions calls marijuana use a “life-wrecking dependency” that is only “slightly less awful” than heroin addiction.

The Attorney General has made his views painfully clear, but we still don’t know what practical steps he’s going to take to fight the states that have already legalized it.

There are currently 8 states where recreational use is legal and 22 states with some sort of medical legalization in place. More than 200 million Americans live in these states.

The legalization movement isn’t slowing down. Eight states passed marijuana initiatives in 2016. In April, West Virginia legalized medical use.

These numbers are expected to increase, and some believe that a major crackdown by Sessions and the Justice Department could push us closer towards legalization by energizing advocates and politicians.




GOOD TO THE LAST DROP:
Did you know…
If you yelled for 8 years, 7 months and 6 days, you would have produced enough sound energy to heat one cup of coffee.


You’re Full Of Baloney!

Grind for May 1st, 2017

FIRST SIP:
“Coffee is a way of stealing time which should, by rights, belong to your older self.”
– Terry Pratchett


THAT’S NOT WHAT I ORDERED

The Headline

AT&T makes bogus “5G” claim

The Claim

As announced in a press release in late April, AT&T is gearing up to launch a series of new 4G LTE features it likes to call the “5G Evolution.”

These features, many of which have already been rolled out by competitors like T-Mobile, will first be available to customers in Austin, Texas.

“Our 5G Evolution in Austin gives our customers a taste of the future,” claims AT&T Chief Marketing Officer David Christopher. “With 5G Evolution from AT&T you don’t have to wait to experience endless entertainment possibilities on the next generation network when you have the latest devices.”

The Truth

The claim that AT&T is giving its customers 5G is like a used car salesman who replaces a 4-cycliner engine with a V6 telling a customer that he’s purchasing a “V8 Evolution” – because it’s closer to being a V8 than it was before.

The “new technology,” which includes advanced carrier aggregation, 4×4 MIMO, and 256 QAM, will be available to AT&T customers in Indianapolis this summer. By the end of the year, it should be available in Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, LA, Nashville, and San Francisco.

The “5G Evolution” features are only available for customers with the Samsung Galaxy S8 or S8+. AT&T says it will soon be offering more devices that can take advantage of the “5G Evolution experience.”




DEJA BREW

The Headline

Could North Korea really destroy a US carrier?

The Threat

President Donald Trump has made it painfully clear that the United States – with or without China’s help – will punish North Korea if it doesn’t stop ramping up its nuclear weapons program.

North Korean leader Kim Jong-un has become increasingly threatening following sanctions by China and decisions by the US and Japan to send ships towards the peninsula.

“Our revolutionary forces are combat-ready to sink a US nuclear powered aircraft carrier with a single strike,” bragged North Korean newspaper Rodong Sinmum.

The Reality

The chances are slim that North Korea could actually find, strike, and destroy a US carrier. The rogue regime does possess anti-ship missiles, but as far as we know they are either too old or have too short a range to do any real damage.

North Korea has a fleet of 40 jet fighters and attack aircraft, but the newest models are almost 30 years old. The fleet is better suited for supporting ground troops than attacking ships.

The USS Carl Vinson is protected by four Aegis air defense destroyers. North Korea couldn’t sink the carrier even if Kim Jong-un sent in all 40 aircraft to do the job.

The Vinson, with a double hull, is also well protected against submarine attacks – not to mention its escorts would almost certainly detect any enemy subs before they got too close.

On top of that, North Korea’s limited shore-based radar systems are painfully antiquated.

“A carrier’s aircraft and escorts will shoot down or sink any of North Korea’s aircraft, drones, submarines, or surface ships before they get within sensor range of the mother ship,” writes Popular Mechanics’ Kyle Mizokami.




GOOD TO THE LAST DROP:
Did you know…
The Postmaster General of the United States is the second highest paid government official after the President.


Wanting It All…

Grind for April 30th, 2017

FIRST SIP:
“I’d rather take coffee than compliments right now.”


TRY IT YOURSELF

The Headline

Here’s how dermatologists protect their skin without avoiding the sun

The Problem

The sun is responsible for most cases of skin cancer and up to 80% of our wrinkles. But the good news is, there are ways to protect your skin without avoiding the beach.

The following tips come directly from dermatologists who – just like us – worry about our skin but want to enjoy the sun.

Good Advice

#1 Store your sunscreen by your toothpaste. This way, you’ll be more likely to see it (and use it) in the morning.

#2 When applying sunscreen, don’t forget these areas: ears, knees, backs of hands, tops of feet, sides of neck, and along the hairline.

#3 Start the day with coffee and antioxidants. Coffee has been shown to lower a person’s risk of developing melanoma, and antioxidants fight free radicals that get into your skin via sun exposure.

#4 Don’t wear lip gloss during the day. Shininess attracts sunlight and can cause sunburn. Instead, choose lip balm with SPF.

#5 If you spend lots of time driving, add UVA-protection film to your car windows.




BAD COFFEE > NO COFFEE

The Headline

Why do Millennials pay for and pirate movies and TV shows?

A Changing Industry

Gone are the days of Blockbuster rentals and cable TV packages. Gone are the days of waiting an entire week between episodes.

Millennials are demanding instant gratification – they want to watch anything they want, anytime they want. And if they can’t find the show they want on a streaming service like Netflix, they will probably find a way to get it illegally.

Consequences

A recent study showed that over 50% of Millennials (ages 18-35) regularly use pirate streaming sites like BitTorrent to watch TV shows and movies when the content isn’t available online. But they would prefer to access content legally.

Even more interesting, only 7% said they felt guilty watching a pirated show.

In years past, movie studios and cable companies were able to control what consumers had access to. Today, these companies are at the mercy of consumer demand. If they don’t provide what people want to see, the people will find a way to watch it and the companies will lose money.




GOOD TO THE LAST DROP:
Did you know…
While children of identical twins are legally first cousins, genetically, they are actually half siblings.


Making Some Changes!

Grind for April 29th, 2017

FIRST SIP:
“I don’t make jokes. I just watch the government and report the facts.”
– Will Rogers


WAKE UP AND SMELL THE COFFEE

The Headline

Why is the French election so important?

The Future

We rarely hear so much about presidential elections in other countries – but the upcoming election in France could have a real effect on the United States and the European Union.

The first round of the French election took place on April 23rd. For the first time since 1958, the French people chose candidates belonging to neither of the nation’s establishment parties.

It would have been like the US choosing Jill Stein and Gary Johnson.

This decision comes as France struggles with a damaged economy, high unemployment rate, and repeated terror attacks. The vote reflects the wave of populism associated with “Brexit” and Donald Trump’s election in the US.

The Candidates

Emmanuel Macron, 39, took first place with about 24% of the vote. Macron has never held political office. He left President Hollande’s Socialist government a year ago to found his own political party En Marche!

His party, which he says is neither Left nor Right, supports a strong European Union and open border immigration policies.

Marine Le Pen, 48, won second place with about 22% of the vote. Her National Front party stands for strict anti-immigration policies. Le Pen is anti-Islam and wants to hold a referendum on EU membership.

Many of the defeated candidates (even Republicans) worry that Le Pen is too radical and have asked supporters to vote for Macron. Others worry that Macron’s immigration policies will destroy France.

Le Pen and Macron will face off on May 7th in a second round. Polls predict Macron will win by a large margin.




STAY GROUNDED

The Headline

Five preventable conditions that shorten our lives

Lose the Weight

Obesity is the leading cause of preventable death in America. Obesity causes more deaths than high blood pressure, tobacco, diabetes, and high cholesterol.

Internal medicine researcher Glen Taksler and his team of scientists at the Cleveland Clinic found that obesity steals up to 47% more life than tobacco.

Stop Smoking

The other four causes of preventable death are tobacco, diabetes, high blood pressure, and high cholesterol. Three of these conditions can be treated, but tobacco use is up to you.

Cigarettes have been demonized for years, but did you know that high blood pressure has the same effect on life expectancy?

“Modifiable behavioral risk factors pose a substantial mortality burden in the US,” says Taksler. His findings emphasize preventative care and why it should be a main priority for doctors.

“These preliminary findings continue to highlight the importance of weight loss, diabetes management, and healthy eating in the US population.”

The scary thing here is that most of the leading causes of death in this country are 100% preventable. We’re literally killing ourselves with bad decisions.




GOOD TO THE LAST DROP:
Did you know…
Owls are the only birds in the world that can see the color blue.