Fen/phen drug continues to cause damage

Fenfluramine causes heart problemsFenfluramine, a diet drug banned in 1997 because of links to possible heart conditions is still causing problems to people who took the drug, according to researchers.

A study published in the journal BMC Medicine says that people who stopped taking the drug 11 years ago were showing signs of damaged heart valves up to seven years later.

Heart valves ensure that blood flows in the proper direction in the heart. If those valves are damaged, blood may flow in the wrong direction which can cause heart failure and may result in the use of additional health resources such as heart valve surgery.

The study followed 5,743 former users of fenfluramine and found that valve problems were common, especially in females, and related to the length of time exposed to the drug according to Charles Dahl from the Central Utah Clinic, leader of the research.

Fenfluramine was often prescribed with phentermine as part of the fen/phen combination used to fight obesity in the early 1990s. Links to heart problems caused the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to pull the drug from the market in 1997.

The FDA points out that fenfluramine is no longer marketed in the U.S.
ADNFCR-1961-ID-18867805-ADNFCR

Washington reacts to disturbing jobs outlook

Bush comments on job lossesAn increasingly disturbing employment outlook is contributing to concerns about the long-term prospects for economic recovery.

New statistics from the Bureau of Labor Statistics indicate that national unemployment stands at 6.5 percent, up from 6.1 percent in September.

This represents a loss of 240,000 jobs in October, and follows 284,000 lost jobs in September and 127,000 in August. Many of these losses took place in industries like construction, manufacturing and service, while the BLS noted that health care and mining continued to grow. A total of 1.2 million jobs have vanished nationwide in 2008.

Labor Secretary Elaine Chao was optimistic for the long term, saying that "it will take time" for the recent $700 billion stimulus package to positively impact the labor market.

President Bush tried to emphasize long term recovery prospects in light of the new figures. "The market for lending between banks has loosened considerably, and the Federal Reserve’s efforts to stabilize the commercial paper market have provided businesses with an urgently needed source of financing," said Bush.

The Associated Press also noted that House Democrats are likely to soon call for an additional $100 billion stimulus plan that could include public works funds to aid job creation.
ADNFCR-1961-ID-18867799-ADNFCR

Legal fees may add insult to injury for taxpayers

Another government bail-out?Taxpayers could find themselves footing the bill for much more than just bad mortgage and investment decisions, amid reports that some executives involved in the situation may be entitled to recover millions of dollars in legal costs from the government.

According to the Associated Press, executives at Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae had contract stipulations that would pay their legal bills if needed. The report notes that following the government’s $200 billion bailout of the two mortgage entities, many former executives are now hiring defense lawyers – and could still face shareholder lawsuits.

Meanwhile, the housing crash and mortgage problems did not come as a surprise to everyone. Five years ago, Congressman and former presidential candidate Ron Paul introduced legislation to remove government subsidies from the two entities, warning of a situation similar to what is happening today.

"Ironically, by transferring the risk of a widespread mortgage default, the government increases the likelihood of a painful crash in the housing market," said Paul in September of 2003 as he introduced his Free Housing Market Enhancement Act.

He added that "the special privileges granted to Fannie and Freddie" and "distorted the housing market by allowing them to attract capital they could not attract under pure market conditions."
ADNFCR-1961-ID-18867787-ADNFCR

Aging is a Drying-Out Disease

For some reason, seniors drink less water as they get older and move less. And since they take so many drugs, this compounds their dehydration, especially with the taking of so many antihistamines. Antihistamines block hydration—leading to acidic blood and the masking of pain. What we mistake as pain and disease is really chronic cellular dehydration.

Seniors do not drink enough water to dilute and dispose of acid waste, greatly contributing to the aging process. Add to this a lack of exercise and acid buildup in the tissues, overloading the lymphatic system. Dehydration over time leads to chronic acid/alkaline imbalance (over acidity) causing chronic disease.

Increased water consumption contributes to alkalinity simply by expelling, diluting and washing out acidity. The diet of American people is highly acidic. Health is restored when diet is returned to 80/20 (alkaline/acidity ratio) coupled with rehydration. Rehydration by itself causes health miracles but added to an 80 percent alkaline diet, health benefits grow exponentially. The more alkaline your diet, the more rapid your improvement will be.

Low oxygen levels come with acidity. To contract an infection, our internal environment has to be acidic. Wouldn’t you guess that this is why some people develop colds and flu when others don’t in the same environment? The medical establishment is confusing symptoms with disease. Disease arises within and develops from an acid and dehydrated environment.

Overacidity and dehydration are the basic causes of all sickness and disease. It is the root cause of aging.

Make no mistake about it, the people selling drugs will never tell you this and they certainly don’t tell their medical students and doctors. And thank God the medical mafia can’t stop this rehydration because it’s as FREE as water. Seniors, start drinking eight glasses of water a day (with a 1/4 teaspoon of sea salt for each quart of water you drink) and get up and start walking. Sitting, by itself, will flat out kill you.

Americans eat too much animal protein which is acidic. Here there is a great need for calcium to neutralize the acid. The body always tries to return to an alkaline state the only way that it can by withdrawing calcium from the bones.

Take your daily calcium and check your saliva and urine pH. Your pH balance (7.365 pH) is the foundation for health and restored health. It’s a good idea to take a mineral supplement with the eight-glasses-a-day water therapy.

Agents of Change

Battle for the mind: How they do it. Any religion that has group identity is by definition an organized religion. Religion prescribes parameters of thought and religion prescribes thought. There are few exceptions to this.

Governments desire organized or group identity religion because they can be manipulated without any awareness by the group.

Religion is in general “tax exempt” because organized religion is pro-government and pro-authority. Any group has group thought and group expression. All individuals become faceless and mindless.

To the extent that one is a group member, to that extent that person surrenders individual identity or ego. The group is first step authority.

The more organizations that authority can get the people involved in, the easier the control and manipulation because all groups espouse altruism. (see below)

Group identity can be any religious group, any fraternal group either secret or open, and any social group.

What about Christianity?

Christianity is a personal and individual religion anathema to organized religious and regimented “spiritual” systems.

The stronger the groups appeal, the more one can be led into and deceived by altruism and altruistic appeals.

Governments strive to move humanity from the ego or self to the group — the foundation of government deception and power.

  1. They use controlled media
  2. “Public education”
  3. Organized religion
  4. Fraternal organization (both secret and open)
  5. Many, many subgroups — see “Occult Theocracy”
  6. Charities

Organizations impress upon one’s psychic concepts pseudo “facts” that are unprovable and have no foundation in fact but are accepted as an absolute generation after generation. The same is foolish to the individualist who by nature or who has a natural inclination to inquire into anything without inhibitions.

As one loses his/her identity to group thought, then he/she becomes manipulated by phony altruistic pronouncements of politicians and authority. This is to say when one loses self he is transferred to group thought. We are one or the other.

Altruism is a morality based on the philosophical premise that man lives for the sake of others… that man’s life and property are available for sacrifice to “higher causes, e.g., the common good the public interest, society, the needy, the world, God, country.”

In practice, it’s who will sacrifice whom. You guessed it. It’s the non-producer political power transferring the wealth, production and the public will to itself. They do this with great ease once they instill Altruism in the public mind with the group concept.

Competent people who act on reality have gone underground in these latter days of political suppression. They are fully aware that hyper-individualism now, though not coded, is tantamount to crime against the state.

What about Warren Buffet and Bill Gates? They certainly understand capitalism and the accumulation of wealth, but they well know to bow their knee to Baal with their espousal of charities and social dispensations, as Bill Gates heavy involvement in vaccination in Africa. Do they know that they are appeasing authority or are they mind-altered with Altruism?

Possession of ones’ ego is to live in reality. The ego is the self and means individuality. The common use of the word ego implies vanity, but our use here simply means the ultra-expression of the individual as opposed to the group.

Group dynamics promotes altruism and a mind locked out of reality. It’s a long road back and few arrive except those few who will read the right material without reservations or bias.

Groups socialize and dehumanize. Communication fails between husband and wife, between neighbors, between professional associates, etc., etc., in direct relation to group influences and their degree of altruism.

Authority abhors individuality. It is the destruction of the individual over time that has moved us to the fascist state.

Think Nazi torchlight parades. Herr Hitler used the morality of altruism with his “higher good” to which anything and everything should be sacrificed for the “National Will.”

CDC: Diabetes cases skyrocket nationwide

Diabetes is a common health conditionThe Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is reporting that new diabetes cases have sharply increased over the last decade, particularly in southern states.

Many experts have suggested that the poor Western diet is to blame, along with an increasingly sedentary lifestyle.

The latest data finds that new diabetes cases increased from 4.8 per 1,000 people in the mid 1990s to 9.1 per 1,000 as of 2007. Minnesota had the lowest rate at 5 per 1,000 people, while West Virginia and Puerto Rico had the highest with a respective 12.7 and 12.8 per 1,000 people.

"We must step up efforts to prevent and control diabetes, particularly in the Southern U.S. region where we see higher rates of diabetes, obesity and physical inactivity," said Karen Kirtland, Ph.D., the lead author of the study.

Other states leading the way in age-adjusted new diabetes cases per 1,000 people included South Carolina (11.5), Arkansas (11.3), Georgia (11.2), and Texas (11.1). Idaho, Texas, and Florida all saw increases of over 200 percent in their age-adjusted diabetes rates. And even though Minnesota had the lowest rate of increase, the state still saw its figures go up by 67 percent over the last decade.

Other states with low diabetes rates per 1,000 include Hawaii (5.9), Wyoming (6.1), and Colorado (6.2).
ADNFCR-1961-ID-18865893-ADNFCR

Marijuana law reformers enjoy election night success

Supporters of marijuana civil liberties had some successSupporters of reforming the nation’s marijuana laws enjoyed a successful campaign season, seeing several of their initiatives win in various states.

The most noteworthy victory came in Massachusetts, where 65 percent of voters supported decriminalizing less than one ounce of marijuana. Also at the state level, 63 percent of Michigan voters supported legalizing medical marijuana. Massachusetts is now the thirteenth state to decriminalize marijuana, while Michigan is the thirteenth state to allow medical marijuana.

"The people were ahead of the politicians on this issue. They recognize and want a more sensible approach to our marijuana policy," Whitney Taylor, chairwoman of the Committee for Sensible Marijuana Policy, told the Boston Globe.

Some local marijuana initiatives also enjoyed success on election night. Fayetteville, Arkansas and Hawaii County both voted to instruct local law enforcement to make crimes involving possession of less than one ounce of marijuana their lowest priority. Four state legislative districts in Massachusetts also voted to instruct their representatives to vote in favor of medical marijuana legislation.

The primary setback for supporters of drug law reform was in California, where a measure to decriminalize possession of up to an ounce of marijuana fell by a 60-40 percent margin.
ADNFCR-1961-ID-18865882-ADNFCR

Internet privacy concerns high on both sides of the Atlantic

Privacy concerns arise in both the U.S. and UKThe issue of privacy is currently being debated in both the U.S. and the UK, among governments and technology companies alike.

In Britain, privacy advocates are wary of plans by the government to monitor all email, phone and Internet traffic in the country with "black box" style technology.

British Information Commissioner Richard Thomas was quoted in the UK newspaper The Independent as saying the proposed Communications Data Bill went a "step too far" and was "awful." Still, British security agencies hope to use the information to fight terrorism and other significant crimes.

The Independent notes that the proposal has created "a huge public outcry," with plans for a formal consultation of the UK public on the matter in 2009.

Meanwhile, on the other side of the Atlantic this week, a coalition including yahoo.com and google.com unveiled a proposal called the Global Network Initiative to try to protect consumer privacy on the web. This plan would require various commitments from participating companies, such as providing greater transparency to users, challenging human rights violations, and advocating laws that respect privacy and the freedom of expression.

"Through this initiative, we take a crucial first step in advancing free expression and privacy, at a time when government interference with these basic human rights is on the rise," said Human Rights First President Mike Posner.
ADNFCR-1961-ID-18865874-ADNFCR

Supreme Court to rule on drug warning labels

Drug warning labels are under legal scrutinyOn Monday, attorneys for the Bush administration argued in front of the Supreme Court that drug companies should be shielded from consumer lawsuits even if they fail to warn patients about risks which could have long reaching effects on their health.

The case involves Diana Levine, a Vermont woman who had her arm amputated after an IV push of the anti-nausea medication Phenergan struck an artery, causing gangrene.

A jury awarded Levine $6.7 million in her suit against Wyeth, the drug’s maker, which the company appealed claiming the federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act prevents state lawsuits that conflict with federal drug regulations like warning labels approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

Levine’s lawyer, David Frederick, argued that Wyeth didn’t do everything in its power to warn of the potential dangers.

"The manufacturer has a duty of due care, a duty to analyze new information on risk and to make appropriate change in the warning to reflect that," said Frederick. "It didn’t live up to that duty."

According to Wyeth’s website, Phenergan has been on the market since 1951 and is typically used to treat the effects of inhaled allergens or food allergies.

ADNFCR-1961-ID-18863148-ADNFCR

Study: Rain Linked to Child Autism

Wet weather is linked to autismA new study indicates that child autism rates may be higher in areas that have more precipitation.

The study, which appears in November’s Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine, examined autism rates for children in selected counties in Washington, Oregon, and California, as well as precipitation rates for those areas from 1987 to 2001.

"These results are consistent with the existence of an environmental trigger for autism among genetically vulnerable children that is positively associated with precipitation," wrote Michael Waldman of Cornell University and his colleagues.

The researchers estimated that the presence of an environmental trigger had increased 2005 autism rates in the studied counties by as much as 43 percent. They also suggested their findings "could potentially be explained by any environmental exposure associated with indoor activities."

In 2007, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention determined that about 1 in 150 8-year-olds in selected areas of the United States suffer from an autism spectrum disorder (ASD). The CDC estimates that this would amount to approximately 560,000 Americans aged 1 to 21 suffering from an ASD.
ADNFCR-1961-ID-18863139-ADNFCR

Organic products running afoul of field drug tests

One couple was wrongly charged with drug possessionThe credibility of field drug test kits is under fire following the arrest of a Canadian couple on erroneous drug charges, raising concern about the violation of their civil liberties.

On September 11, Ron Obadia and Nadine Artemis crossed the U.S. border with their infant son. The two were checked for drugs and a field test was administered on beauty products and organic chocolate produced by their company, Living Libations.

After the NIK field test produced a false positive, the couple were arrested and charged with exporting a controlled substance. Under separate interrogation, each was told by officers that the other had confessed to smuggling hashish.

The couple faced a similar incident on August 3 in Toronto after another false positive drug test. They were arrested, interrogated, and later visited by child welfare authorities.

The two were exonerated after more tests. Before the September incident, the two had notified border authorities of their travel plans and were accompanied by an attorney, but were still arrested.

"I thought somebody must have planted drugs in our bag. We didn’t know the tests could be faulty," Obadia told USA Today.

Along with worrying about their civil liberties, Obadia and Artemis are concerned about their rights to market and transport organic products.
ADNFCR-1961-ID-18863130-ADNFCR

Economy Seen Struggling In The Short Term

Uncertain times for the U.S. economyThe National Association for Business Economics is predicting that the economy will rebound in 2009 – but not before continuing to struggle in the short term.

NABE President-elect Chris Varvares said that if current economic conditions do not undergo a rapid recovery, prospects could decline further.

"Still, the NABE panel expects that lower oil prices, a bottoming out in home prices, and a better functioning of financial markets should enable the economy to resume trend-like growth by the second half of 2009," he added.

Meanwhile, the economy is showing few signs of recovery in the short term. The Bureau of Economic Analysis reported that the gross domestic product had decreased at an annual rate of 0.3 percent during the third quarter of 2008, down from a second quarter increase of 2.8 percent.

Varvares added that NABE economists "see virtually no economic growth in the fourth quarter" and predicted that the GDP would only grow by 1.3 percent in the first quarter of 2009, but would reach 3 percent by the end of 2009.

He also notes that two out of three economists believe that a recession has already begun or will be underway by the end of 2008.
ADNFCR-1961-ID-18861481-ADNFCR

Unstable markets could pay off for Roth investors

A Roth IRA could help guard your wealthOngoing instability in the stock market may offer a silver lining to those saving for retirement.

Some financial observers suggest switching from a traditional retirement account to a Roth IRA now because so many stock portfolios have posted significant drops.

This presents a potentially lower tax burden to those who switch. Assuming those portfolios return to their previous levels over time, some investors could realize considerable financial gains.

Writing on ABCnews.com, financial columnist David McPherson offers another reason to convert now to a Roth IRA.

"Twenty years from now, federal income taxes are going to be higher than they are today," he predicts, citing unchecked federal deficits and the pending retirement of the Baby Boom generation.

McPherson, converting now to a Roth IRA would amount to "paying lower taxes now than at higher rates later."

A Roth IRA works differently from a traditional IRA in that it does not tax an individual’s savings upon retirement. Traditional IRAs offer tax breaks as money is placed into an account, but then income tax is collected on those earnings at retirement.

According to the IRS website, workers can invest up to $5,000 a year in a Roth IRA, or $6,000 if they are over age 50. Roth contributions are not reported on one’s tax return. ADNFCR-1961-ID-18861478-ADNFCR

New Google browser raises privacy concerns

Can Google respect people's privacy?The group Consumer Watchdog is calling on the Justice Department and state attorneys general to protect consumer privacy amid concerns about Google’s new Chrome browser.

It has raised a red flag about the danger of Google selling information about people’s web usage to third parties, saying that the company has "a financial interest in knowing ever more about who we are" online.

Chrome’s features include easier access to bookmarked pages, desktop shortcuts to web applications, and warnings if surfers are about to access an unsafe website. Chrome also includes an "Incognito" mode that allows surfers to prevent pages from showing up in their browsing history.

However, Consumer Watchdog urges Google to "ensure that Incognito mode has the full meaning the word implies when users opt for it." The group wants Google to protect consumer privacy with a single, instant Incognito button that remains in default mode and keeps information from outside servers.

"If Google won’t solve its own privacy problems, the company must be prepared for regulators to put the brakes on its unprecedented growth," said Consumer Watchdog President Jamie Court.
ADNFCR-1961-ID-18861477-ADNFCR

Complete Health Depends on Complete Proteins

Goat milk is really the perfect food. It is the most widely consumed milk in the world. It’s nature’s support for stamina and longevity.

Why goat milk protein? The molecular composition (size) of goat milk protein is most like human milk, making it easier to digest and absorb.

Many individuals allergic or reactive to cow’s milk easily tolerate goat’s milk because the protein molecules are one-fifth smaller than cow’s milk. This is super-important for those who have compromised digestive systems, and this includes a very high percentage of Americans. In fact digestive disorders rank at the top of the list as health complaints.

A combination of goat milk and whey proteins is a complete compliment of essential bodybuilding blocks including glutamine and a healthy ratio of potassium to sodium.

The brain is made up of more than one-third protein, which produces the amino acids to prevent depression, apathy, irritability, hyperactivity and unexplained fatigue. Natural goat milk is a very rich source of animal protein.

Signs of protein deficiency

  • Grayish complexion; chronic fatigue; fragile, splitting and slow-growing fingernails.
  • Hair loss; frequent illness; females may stop menstruating.

Why Goat Milk Protein Powder?

  • Because it contains beneficial bacteria designed to be resistant to heat, cold, chlorine, fluorine, stomach acid and extremes of pH.
  • Is a balanced combination of rich milk and whey proteins containing amino acids.
  • Is fermented using a lactic acid bacterium that creates biologically active lactic acid — used for energy production and fat burning.
  • Is credited by the healthiest and longest living people for their longevity.
  • Is a cultured (lacto-fermented) dairy product, credited by some as capable of lowering cholesterol and protecting against bone loss.
  • Is abundant in naturally occurring digestive enzymes—protease, amylase, lipase and lactase.
  • Is produced from goats that are not fed pesticide-contaminated food, herbicides, growth hormones or antibiotics.
  • Goat milk is credited for supporting stamina and longevity. Goat milk protein is nature’s original fast food, a daily supplement to fast living.

1,800 banks could line up for bailout funds

The Fed is doling out money to thousands of banksMore banks could apply for their share of the government’s $700 billion rescue package than was originally estimated, according to a report in the Wall Street Journal.

Although some financial institutions have claimed they are strong enough to survive without asking for money, the publication says that Treasury and banking regulators have suggested that as many as 1,800 publicly held banks could join the line for funding in the next few weeks.

Additionally, it has been suggested that thousands of private banks could also apply for financial relief as well.

Current figures indicate that nine large banks are on track to be supplied with $125 billion, while 16 regional institutions are set to receive $33 billion under the Troubled Asset Relief Program, Reuters reports.

Dividend.com has suggested that some lenders may feel pressure to sign up for capital from the government or risk falling behind others who take the money.

The TARP program has a November 14th deadline for application and reports have estimated that there is around $125 billion left for smaller banks to claim before that point.
ADNFCR-1961-ID-18858577-ADNFCR

Govt ordered to release wiretapping documents

Bush must release documents related to a civil liberties lawsuitThe Bush administration has been ordered by a U.S. district judge to release documents relating to its warrantless wiretapping program.

Following the September 11th 2001 attacks, the government gave the National Security Agency permission to engage in telephone surveillance of suspected terrorists without first obtaining a warrant.

Civil liberties groups have since filed a lawsuit against the NSA, Bush and other members of his administration related to the program.

On Friday, Judge Henry Kennedy said that the government must hand over the documents by November 17th, after which he will review them to determine whether they could be made public without endangering national security.

Commenting on the decision, the Electronic Privacy Information Center’s Marc Rotenberg told the Associated Press that the prospect of making the papers public was "a common sense matter."

"It’s an important decision because up to this point the judge has relied on the government’s assertion that it has done everything properly under the law and that it has disclosed everything it needs to disclose," he added.

Last month, the National Research Council released a report calling for the government to ensure it is takes measures to protect privacy and civil liberties before implementing any surveillance program.
ADNFCR-1961-ID-18858558-ADNFCR

U.S. kids taking more meds than ever

Today's kids are highly medicatedA new study confirms a growing body of evidence suggesting that today’s children are more medicated than any past generation.

The findings indicate that it is increasingly common for American children to be prescribed drugs to address a number of health conditions, from asthma to diabetes.

Research published in the journal Pediatrics show an increase in prescription medications given to children over the years stretching from 2002-05, compared with previous three-year periods.

Dr. Emily R. Rox and colleagues found that prescriptions for medications to treat type 2 diabetes among children aged five to 19 doubled during this period, while those aimed at asthma rose by 46 percent.

Attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder, depression and high cholesterol were among the other conditions that saw an increase regarding their treatment with prescription drugs.

"Most people who would look at these numbers would indicate that these are worrisome trends" Cox told HealthDay News. "We need to understand what is driving this increase."

Previous research published in Child and Adolescent Psychiatry and Mental Health found that American children are approximately three times more likely than their European counterparts to be prescribed psychotropic drugs.
ADNFCR-1961-ID-18858543-ADNFCR

AARP calls for retirement account withdrawals rule change

AARP has called for a freeze on mandatory withdrawalsOlder Americans could be financially penalized unless the rules governing mandatory retirement account withdrawals are amended, the AARP has warned.

The retiree advocacy group has called for a temporary freeze on these withdrawals, due to the recent state of the U.S. economy.

Under current rules, those who are aged 70 ½ and older must take distributions from their account based on the fair market value of this account on the final day of the previous year.

In a letter to treasury secretary Henry Paulson, AARP CEO Bill Novelli said that many people would find themselves choosing between taking a withdrawal based on higher values than those currently seen or paying a tax penalty of 50 percent for not taking a withdrawal.

"The sudden decline in the economy and plunging stock markets has jeopardized the retirement savings of millions of retired workers," Novelli wrote.

"In addition to steps that are already being taken to stabilize the financial markets, we believe it is also critical to help stabilize individual finances."

Last month, the AARP released a statement supporting Paulson’s proposal of a second economic stimulus package, aimed at providing a boost to Main Street instead of Wall Street.
ADNFCR-1961-ID-18858394-ADNFCR

Student privacy suit settled

Students' data was sold to marketersA New Jersey-based company that operates by collecting information from students will have to allow participants to opt out of their service, following the settlement of a privacy lawsuit.

The settlement, announced by the state’s attorney general Anne Milgram, includes a $200,000 fine for Educational Research Center of America.

ERCA provided surveys to teachers in dozens of U.S. states, offering educators $40 gift cards as an incentive for participation.

Questions about ethnicity, religion, sports, hobbies and school activities were included in the surveys. The firm then sold the junior and senior high school students’ data to third parties to be used for marketing purposes.

The multistate settlement says that the company will be required to clearly show how students can choose to opt out of the survey. It also prohibits the organization from giving out monetary gifts to teachers.

Previously Iowa attorney general Tom Miller – who led the suit – pursued a similar company in 2006 for not letting children or teachers know that it was selling their information, the Des Moines Register reports.
ADNFCR-1961-ID-18856663-ADNFCR

Citizen group find plenty of financial nightmares in Washington

Congress' money management can be frightening, group saysAs another year of Halloween-inspired frights has just passed by, Citizens Against Government Waste has used the opportunity to point out some scary government behavior that has taken place over the past few months.

CAGW calls the $700 bailout bill "the worst trick perpetrated on taxpayers this year," claiming that it is a significant step towards creating a socialist mentality in Washington.

It points to government intervention in the cases of Bear Stearns, AIG, and Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac as additional examples of how taxpayers are forced to foot the bill for Wall Street’s missteps.

CAGW is also highly critical of the way that Congress is managing (or mismanaging) the federal budget, which reached $455 billion in the fiscal year 2008.

The group says that spending over the course of the year has risen by 9.1 percent, which is the highest increase seen since 1990, while revenue fell by 1.2 percent.

"Congress’ reaction to the bad news is to propose spending increases and a $400 billion stimulus bill instead of taking a Texas-sized chainsaw to the plethora of federal government programs that are outdated and wasteful," CAGW states.

Meanwhile, in related news, Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke has recently called for indefinite government backing of consumer mortgages.
ADNFCR-1961-ID-18856657-ADNFCR

Strong concerns raised about diabetes drug risk

Avandia has been linked to liver and heart problemsAn advocacy group has called for the Food and Drug Administration to immediately ban the diabetes drug Avandia, due to serious health concerns.

According to Public Citizen, the drug – manufactured by pharmaceutical company Glaxo-SmithKline – can cause liver failure and other life-threatening conditions.

The group has published a statement in Diabetes Care which cites 14 cases of liver failure that can apparently be linked to Avandia. In 12 instances, the condition resulted in death.

In addition to liver toxicity, the group warns that the medication has been linked to an increased risk of heart attacks, heart failure, bone fractures and complications from vision problems.

"The scientific consensus against Avandia is overwhelming," commented Public Citizen’s Dr. Sidney Wolfe.

"The timing of these findings should give the FDA the momentum it needs to act swiftly to prevent further needless deaths and health damage by banning this drug."

In May 2007, the FDA issued an alert about the heart attack risks associated with Avandia, saying that it would continue to assess its potential dangers.ADNFCR-1961-ID-18856655-ADNFCR