A study of 1.3 million kids revealed no link between vaccines and autism

You can read more at this link but here are the most relevant parts:

 

Five cohort studies involving 1,256,407 children and five case-control studies involving 9920 children were included in this analysis

 

Findings of this meta-analysis suggest that vaccinations are not associated with the development of autism or autism spectrum disorder.

 

There is no reason to be anti-vaccine other than being pro-disinformation.

 

Speak out against NSA mass surveillance

February 11, today, is “The Day We Fight Back”, an initiative to have the masses speak up and out to their local representative.  I’m skeptical that writing e-mails or making phone calls will change much, if anything at all.  Most of our congress critters, in my pessimistic view, are already in the pockets of some interest and that interest is not ours.  But I also believe the one thing our political class loves more than money is their seat of power so maybe, just maybe, if enough phone calls are made so that a representative feels that seat is sufficiently threatened… well, who knows.

It’s certainly worth a try, so click the banner below and go send an e-mail or make a phone call to your local rep.  It’s only a little thing but little things add up.

 

Greatest Blindsides in Survivor History, Part 1

This week’s episode of Survivor is called “Blindside Time!” and in honor of it – and a question posed somewhere else – I’ve decided to tackle the shows biggest blindsides.  Since there’s no question in my mind that it’s impossible to pick the biggest blindside ever, I decided to go season by season and pick the biggest one from each.  Check out my picks for seasons 1 through 8 on the Survivor page.

Food for Thought, non-fiction by Braden Thacker

From Hoosier Writers 2012 by Braden Thacker

Let’s look at the complexity of human beings as a species or even just one individual.

For one, most adult human beings have roughly 500 trillion chemical synapses, or at least that’s what we’re able to measure at this time (potential chemical connections between neurons and not potential synaptic pathways) and if you consider that in the next few decades or so there will be roughly 9 billion people on the planet, that’s a minimum of 4,500,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 synapses with 9 billion different controllers, each individual possessing a near infinite capacity for variation and almost unlimited action potential, not even accounting for potential interaction with others.

This baseline for interaction and potential among our species alone at least dwarfs the number of atoms that compose everything on earth, (1.33 x 10^500) which is of course a roundabout way of saying that our relationships with each other, or at least the potential that exists, are/is far more complex than we can really ever comprehend and more intricate than any audit of our immediate physical existence.

Also, if we’re taking a physical or material view of things, consider the volume of electrical activity alone and the percentage of atoms that are being moved along these synaptic pathways, as well as the changes to polarity that result thereof.

The way people think is very important, no doubt, and even in a strictly physical sense (read: non-spiritual, philosophical) that’s a lot of physical activity that has to be accounted for.

Essentially this means our potential as a species for variations of cognition, experience, feeling and communication exceeds by far our estimate of the total number of suns in our own galaxy, a measly few hundred billion, to the effect that exploring the thoughts and feelings of our neighbors, even just one of them, is for all practical purposes more of a complicated and cosmic pursuit than sending a satellite to the outer reaches of the galaxy.

We have every right to be vain and every excuse to be concerned with other people and ourselves in light of what we know about the universe. Each person truly contains limitless potential for thought, expression and experience. And from our incomplete understanding of the relation of electromagnetics to gravity/matter on a cosmological scale, even the most skeptical person has to admit that individuals and human beings interact with elemental forces at work in the universe in ways that we cannot yet fully comprehend, even when they just speak to the person next to them for just a single second.

Some food for thought.