The Far Traveler

Monday, July 27, 2015

Doctor Who - Entire Cast






Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Republicans Are Killing Women: US Maternal Death Rate Climbs; Female Deaths Rise In GOP Counties



Republicans Are Killing Women: US Maternal Death Rate Climbs; Female Deaths Rise In GOP Counties

Author: January 15, 2015 3:08 pm
“Today’s mothers are twice as likely to die of pregnancy- or childbirth-related causes than their mothers were. There is no reason, given our vast resources, knowledge and technology, why we should be going backwards in this area.” – Laura Gilkey, coordinator of The Safe Motherhood Quilt Project, a nonprofit based in Sarasota, Fla.
Globally, only a few countries have seen a rise in the rate of maternal deaths in recent years. Those include Afghanistan, El Salvador, South Sudan and the United States of America. While at one the US had all but eliminated deaths associated with childbirth, things have changed in recent years, with maternal death rates climbing from 14.5 per 100,000 to 17.8 per 100,000 between 2007 and 2011. As of 2014, the number of women who die during pregnancy and childbirth in the US has risen to 28 deaths per 100,000.
For purposes of comparison, the maternal death rate in nearly all wealthy, developed nations is a single digit number. As of 2014, the US maternal death rate is 7 times higher than that of Austria, Finland, Iceland, Italy, Norway, Spain and Sweden, all nation’s which have a maternal mortality rate of just 4 deaths per 100,000.
It might surprise conservatives to learn that the maternal death rate in the US is 14 times greater than that of Israel. While right wingers might be under the impression that Israel’s very low maternal mortality rate is the result of strict abortion policies, nothing could be further from the truth. The country has very liberal abortion laws, and women are provided with government subsidized abortion services. The country’s liberal policies regarding women’s health has led to a maternal death rate of just two women per 100,000.
According to an article published in Medical Daily, in October 2014, since the year 2011:
Oklahoma, Mississippi, and Kansas have implemented 14 abortion restrictions — the most of any other state. Arkansas and Indiana were tied for the second-most restriction, while Florida, Arizona, and Alabama were tied for third. And out of all 50 states, it was the ones with more restrictions that also had higher, well, everything: maternal deaths, uninsured rates, infant and child death rates, teen drug and alcohol abuse, as well as lower preventive care and cancer screening rates.

The article cited evidence from a 2014 study conducted by the Center for Reproductive Rights. The study, ‘Evaluating Priorities: Measuring Women And Children’s Health And Well-Being Against Abortion Restrictions In The States‘ found that the states with the greatest number of abortion restrictions scored lowest on indicators of women’s and children’s overall health and well-being.
Read the study at this link.
As of 2011, the state of Georgia, which has 11 restrictive abortion laws, leads the nation in the number of maternal deaths,at 35 per 100,000 live births. As it turns out, right-wing anti-abortion policies aren’t only sexist, they are also racist. In Georgia’s Fulton County, for example, the maternal death rate for black women is 94 per 100,000 live births. In the same county, however, the maternal death rate for white women is nearly non-existent. In Chocktaw, Mississippi, one of the three states with the most restrictive abortion laws, the maternal death rate is higher than it is in Sub-Saharan African countries. On a national level, black woman are far more likely to die in childbirth than white women.
The state with the second highest rate of maternal mortality is Oklahoma, according to Sept 2014 report by the Oklahoma Hospital Association. The state also continues to have a much higher than average infant mortality rate. One of just three states in the US that has enacted 14 strict anti-choice laws, Oklahoma is one of the most dangerous places in the country for pregnant women.
The rising death toll in the GOP war on women can be linked to several factors, including decreasing access to abortion and limited health care for women. Other factors include socioeconomic conditions that specifically impact women. Ranked the fourth worst state for women, Mississippi does a terrible job recording and reporting on the number of women who die during pregnancy in the state. According to the state’s website, however, Mississippi has ‘a high rate of maternal deaths.’ The state’s infant mortality rate, and rate of teen pregnancy are the highest in the nation.
It’s not just maternal death rates that are on the increase for women in the US. In March of last year, MSNBC published a report on the spike in female deaths in specific areas of the country. The map below was drawn using the most recently available research, which covers the years 1992 – 1996 and 2002 – 2006.
Image credit: MSNBC
Image credit: MSNBC
Compare the map above to the one below, which shows increasing mortality rates for men during the same period.
Image credit: MSNBC
Image credit: MSNBC
These are alarming trends which, in a country governed by sanity, would have lawmakers searching for answers. Yet, in the past decade the US has been governed, not by sanity, but by religious extremism.  The facts are in and it’s more than clear that the right-wing’s obsession with saving zygotes is killing women. Yet while the right wing religious fanatics are in the middle of straining at gnats and swallowing camels, we know all too well that they won’t be interrupted by a trivial reality, like women dying.
On the first day that the new Congress convened in Washington, Republicans attempted to pass five more restrictive and dangerous anti-abortion laws at the Federal level. These attacks are only going to get worse, as the religious fanatics in Washington give more and more rights to fertilized eggs, while taking more and more rights away from US women. They claim their fanaticism is ‘pro-life,’ but Republican laws result in death, not life.




Saturday, March 14, 2015

Novatec unveils stealth mid-drive system

Novatec unveils stealth mid-drive system

TAICHUNG, Taiwan (BRAIN) ─ Mid-drive systems from Bosch, Panasonic and Shimano require frames designed around their drive units. Novatec took the opposite approach with Eram, introduced at Taichung Bike Week. It looks like a crank with thick bash rings fitting a standard bottom bracket, but it packs a 250-watt punch.
"We kept the size of the motor system small — it's really not that much larger than a triple crank," said Allen Shih, Novatec's sales specialist. "It fits any full-suspension mountain frame without interfering with any suspension function."
Since a suspension frame's jumble of tubes makes finding a place to mount a battery difficult, Novatec is offering a backpack-able battery option so a rider doesn't need to mount the battery to the frame. With smartphone control, there is no reason to run wires to a handlebar control.
The preproduction prototype weighs 1.5 kilograms (3.3 pounds), and the company is shooting for 1.1 kilos (less than 2.5 pounds) for production versions. And though small, the motor still packs more than 60 Newton-meters of torque. Since the motor is on the non-drive crankarm, the system allows the use of standard chainrings and a front derailleur.
Novatec didn't mean for its electric mid-drive system to be stealth; the company just didn't want it to get in the way of bike designers. So compacting the drive system to keep it out of the way pretty much meant it had to fit within the envelope of a traditional crankset. Novatec packs a powerful motor within the space normally occupied by three chainrings.
Although the company has a wide range of electric vehicles in its catalog, from electric scooters and mopeds to cycles for people with special needs, this is its first electric drive system. The compact packaging and bottom bracket mounting suggest it would retrofit well to an existing bike, but the company emphasizes it's targeting OEM spec.
"Its small, compact size and our range of battery options gives bike makers complete freedom to incorporate the system to their bike," Shih said. "They can design their bike to look the way they want and not worry about how our drive system is going to change that look," he said.

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Want to avoid toxins on your food? Shop the “Clean Fifteen”

Here’s the Clean Fifteen list:

1. Avocados
2. Sweet corn
3. Pineapple
4. Cabbage
5. Sweet peas (frozen)
6. Onions
7. Asparagus
8. Mangos
9. Papyas
10. Kiwi
11. Eggplant
12. Grapefruit
13. Cantaloupe
14. Cauliflower
15. Sweet potatoes
 


Wednesday, February 25, 2015

This Billionaire Governor Taxed the Rich and Increased the Minimum Wage -- Now, His State's Economy Is One of the Best in the Country

"When he took office in January of 2011, Minnesota governor Mark Dayton inherited a $6.2 billion budget deficit and a 7 percent unemployment rate from his predecessor, Tim Pawlenty, the soon-forgotten Republican candidate for the presidency who called himself Minnesota's first true fiscally-conservative governor in modern history. Pawlenty prided himself on never raising state taxes -- the most he ever did to generate new revenue was increase the tax on cigarettes by 75 cents a pack. Between 2003 and late 2010, when Pawlenty was at the head of Minnesota's state government, he managed to add only 6,200 more jobs.
During his first four years in office, Gov. Dayton raised the state income tax from 7.85 to 9.85 percent on individuals earning over $150,000, and on couples earning over $250,000 when filing jointly -- a tax increase of $2.1 billion. He's also agreed to raise Minnesota's minimum wage to $9.50 an hour by 2018, and passed a state law guaranteeing equal pay for women. Republicans like state representative Mark Uglem warned against Gov. Dayton's tax increases, saying, "The job creators, the big corporations, the small corporations, they will leave. It's all dollars and sense to them." The conservative friend or family member you shared this article with would probably say the same if their governor tried something like this. But like Uglem, they would be proven wrong.
Between 2011 and 2015, Gov. Dayton added 172,000 new jobs to Minnesota's economy -- that's 165,800 more jobs in Dayton's first term than Pawlenty added in both of his terms combined. Even though Minnesota's top income tax rate is the 4th-highest in the country, it has the 5th-lowest unemployment rate in the country at 3.6 percent. According to 2012-2013 U.S. census figures, Minnesotans had a median income that was $10,000 larger than the U.S. average, and their median income is still $8,000 more than the U.S. average today.
By late 2013, Minnesota's private sector job growth exceeded pre-recession levels, and the state's economy was the 5th fastest-growing in the United States. Forbes even ranked Minnesota the 9th-best state for business (Scott Walker's "Open For Business" Wisconsin came in at a distant #32 on the same list). Despite the fearmongering over businesses fleeing from Dayton's tax cuts, 6,230 more Minnesotans filed in the top income tax bracket in 2013, just one year after Dayton's tax increases went through. As of January 2015, Minnesota has a $1 billion budget surplus, and Gov. Dayton has pledged to reinvest more than one third of that money into public schools. And according to Gallup, Minnesota's economic confidence is higher than any other state
Gov. Dayton didn't accomplish all of these reforms by shrewdly manipulating people -- this article describes Dayton's astonishing lack of charisma and articulateness. He isn't a class warrior driven by a desire to get back at the 1 percent -- Dayton is a billionaire heir to the Target fortune. It wasn't just a majority in the legislature that forced him to do it -- Dayton had to work with a Republican-controlled legislature for his first two years in office. And unlike his Republican neighbor to the east, Gov. Dayton didn't assert his will over an unwilling populace by creating obstacles between the people and the vote -- Dayton actually created an online voter registration system, making it easier than ever for people to register to vote.
The reason Gov. Dayton was able to radically transform Minnesota's economy into one of the best in the nation is simple arithmetic. Raising taxes on those who can afford to pay more will turn a deficit into a surplus. Raising the minimum wage will increase the median income. And in a state where education is a budget priority and economic growth is one of the highest in the nation, it only makes sense that more businesses would stay.
It's official -- trickle-down economics is bunk. Minnesota has proven it once and for all. If you believe otherwise, you are wrong.
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Edward A. Villarreal. Powered by Blogger.

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