Sunday, August 27, 2017

Democratic Dilemma


I just read three articles that illustrate the dangerous situation in this country that we must face up to before there is any hope of Universal Health Care, or any other progressive objective.

First – the long standing drive of the GOP to gain power – gerrymandering, voter suppression, etc. The demonizing of Hillary is just one nasty, aspect detailed in this story:

Hillary Need Not Apologize For What Happened  Her destruction [by the GOP] was decades in the making.


"The real answer to what happened to Clinton in 2016 won’t be found in her book. You’d have to go back more than a decade, when the GOP took dead aim at then Senator Clinton as a potential presidential contender. Their plan was pretty simple. It entailed digging up every scintilla of old and new dirt it could dredge up against her to torpedo her candidacy even before [it] officially took off."

Second, Russia’s efforts to influence Trump and our election, as well as the elections of other Western states, as illustrated in this story:

The Gripping Story Behind the Case for Trump-Putin Collusion  Bill Browder's explosive testimony provides compelling insight for the corrupt bargain at the heart of the Russia investigation.

And finally, this lengthy interview (there is a transcript) discussing the insidious influence of White Supremacists/Neo-Nazis in our current administration. It’s scary that up to a third of US citizens seem to have fallen for this line of thinking – blame the Jews, the Blacks, the Muslims for all our troubles!

Life After Hate: Full Intv. with Nephew of Fascist WhoMarched in Charlottesville & Former Neo-Nazi

[O]ur complete discussion with a former neo-Nazi and the nephew of a white supremacist who marched in the Charlottesville, Virginia, protest. Christian Picciolini is co-founder of Life After Hate, a nonprofit helping people disengage from hate and violent extremism. He was a leading neo-Nazi skinhead gang member and far-right extremist in the 1980s and 1990s. We also speak with Jacob Scott, the nephew of Peter Tefft, who was disowned by his father, Pearce Tefft, in a letter published in a local newspaper.
It’s especially interesting the techniques Picciolini uses in changing the beliefs of Neo-Nazis that his organization works with – the same techniques we need to use in interactions with right-wingers – listen, and help establish contact with those they are afraid of.
  

At this point bashing the Democratic Party is not helpful, blaming them for Hillary’s defeat, since they were fighting against these powerful forces. Yes, they made major mistakes, but our mission now should be to support the progressive wing of the Dem. Party, promote a progressive platform and encourage the progressive candidates that are running, with the goal of transforming the party (which is what OurRevolution is doing). Other progressive parties have important messages, but they aren’t going to win elections anytime soon. They have a much better chance of transforming the party and the country by running candidates in Democratic primaries, shaking up the party, as Bernie did, and moving it to the left (just as the Alt-right moved their party to the extreme right by running in their primaries).

With the current administration bent on undoing every progressive change made in this country, we have our work cut out for us!

Monday, March 13, 2017

Misguided School Lunch Guidelines

On 3/4/17 I sent a letter to the editor of the Toledo Blade, which has not appeared, so I’m posting it here. It was in response to this editorial:

Good for Rep. Steve King taking aim at the misguided school lunch guidelines.
Where is the evidence that the current low fat, low salt guidelines for school lunches has led to healthier students? The notion that limiting fat will help kids lose weight is based on a misunderstanding of how the body deals with real food. Research has shown that children who drink whole milk tend to be slimmer than children who drink low fat milk. The butterfat contains valuable nutrients, such as true vitamin A. The nutrients in vegetables are absorbed better when you butter those veggies. The idea that natural saturated fats are bad for you has been thoroughly debunked, though it has been dying a very slow death unfortunately.
Salt is an essential mineral in the blood stream. The notion that you can’t add enough salt to soup made from scratch to make it taste good is nonsense! They seem to be using the guidelines for elderly people with high blood pressure.
We are giving our children the awful message that healthy food doesn’t taste good, which is simply not true when real food is properly prepared. I speak as a slim, retired dietitian who uses plenty of butter and drinks [raw] whole milk.
Kris Johnson, MS Nutrition, retired dietitian
Williston, OH
419-320-2309

I would have liked to add more information supporting my position, but the length of letters to the editor is limited.
The Healthy Nation Coalition, consisting of many health and nutrition professionals, has a goal of changing the USDA Dietary Guidelines so they actually promote good health: http://forahealthynation.org/healthy-nation-coalition-letter/
The Weston A. Price Foundation has several article on this topic: https://www.westonaprice.org/dietary-guidelines-usda/
And, of course, on my website there are many links to healthy dietary guidance.

So learn to take with a grain of salt some of the advice that you so often see in the paper, such as this article that appeared in today’s paper, Bacon, soda & too few nuts tied to big portion of US deaths.

Kris
Whole Foods = Good Health!