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Mindconnection eNL, 2018-05-06


In this issue:
Good News | Product Highlight | Brainpower | Finances | Security | Health/Fitness | Factoid | Thought 4 the Day

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1. Good News

Item 1. That seemingly miracle substance, graphene, can now be produced with zero band gap. Read the full story here:

Item 2. Kanye West had the courage to publicly defy the anti-Trump mania, even though he is in a business dominated by Democrats and Hillary supporters. An excerpt from his message: "I don’t agree with everything anyone does. That’s what makes us individuals. And we have the right to independent thought."

Item 3. On Wednesday, the 18th of April, eleven members of Congress sent a criminal referral to the Justice Department and FBI, seeking an investigation of former bureau boss James Comey, his deputy Andrew McCabe, ex-Attorney General Loretta Lynch and Hillary Clinton.

Item 4. A new type of solar cell may shoot way past today's efficiency limits. Read the full story here:


2. Product Highlight

LUX 4 Speech Translator

  • Speech to speech translation that you can take anywhere (no Internet required); Language learning programs for most of them.
  • Connects via Wi-Fi to Google Play Store, Gmail, Skype, Youtube, or any website you want to visit.
  • You can use LUX4 to reserve flights, hold your electronic boarding pass, do preflight early check-in, check flight status, find hotels, locate restaurants, and see the weather forecast.
  • While in flight, on the train, or in a cab, you can use your LUX4 to play movies, music, audiobooks, or e-books.
  • You can use it to check appointments, record voice memos, or take notes.
  • Runs on Android OS, Version 7; Hi-res 7-inch screen; Smart QWERTY and virtual keyboard w/voice input.
  • Fits in a coat pocket: 7.5 x 4 x 0.7 in; weighs only 12 ounces.

You can buy from us with confidence. We've been making online customers happy since 1997.


Available in our Amazon Store

3. Brainpower tip

"You can't stop insane people from doing insane things by passing insane laws. That's insane!" -- Penn & Teller.

There are many attempted "debates" in which one side holds that punishing law-abiding citizens for crimes committed by others will stop criminals from committing similar crimes. Now, read that opening quote again.

People with an effective IQ of zero (or below) simply are not worth "debating" so don't waste your brainpower on them. When confronted by them, remember they have no interest in having an intelligent discussion. No matter what you say, you will be "wrong". All they want is a monologue, not a dialogue.

One strategy for handling these folks is to say something like, "When you learn the basic facts of the issue, let me know. Until then, it won't be possible for us to discuss it intelligently."

Thus, you avoid frustration (which is a brainpower reducer) while also being able to put your brainpower to good use instead of wasting it.

4. Finance tip

Debt is a form of enslavement. The vast majority of Americans are debt slaves because of choices they make. The main driver of those choices is an underlying lack of confidence. To compensate, people spend beyond their means to obtain status symbols. If you look at the statistics on baby boomers, you can see the vast majority are completely unprepared for old age.

Here are some things I do not spend money on:

  • Rent or mortgage. The "debate" on rent versus own leaves out an important aspect. It's called cash flow. If you own a home free and clear (except for ongoing property tax obligations) by age 50, that gives you a quarter century of huge savings that can multiply via investment in a middle-quality mutual fund into a nice retirement nest egg.
  • Car payments. OK, you'll have to do this periodically. But why not make that period at 15 or 20 years? Buy a car that is affordable and practical. Buy one that gets the job done, not one you think will impress everyone else. Do you really need to lay out an extra $5,000 for all the goodies? If you can't comfortably pay the car off in three to five years, find a cheaper car. Once you own it, take care of it.
  • Vehicle maintenance. Except for tire balancing and front end alignments, I do this myself. If you're not a trained mechanic, learn a few basics. Change your own cabin filter, clean your battery terminals, check your fluids, etc. And then try to find some other expenditure you can save on by DIY. For example, bake your own baked goods (I do that, and I don't use any wheat or corn products). Or do your own handyman work (I do this, as well). Focus on things where the service call is the big expense, for example you should be able to replace a faucet or change out a toilet float kit. If you don't know how to do anything that you're currently outsourcing, consider volunteering to help a skilled person who is willing to teach you.
  • Credit card interest. I pay off the balance every two weeks on each of the cards I have. My credit score was 829, the last time I checked it.
  • Booze. Contrary to the wine industry's lies, there is no health benefit to drinking wine. That tiny bit of reservatrol does not come anywhere close to compensating for the endocrine disruption caused by the concentrated sugars. Nor does it help replace the brain cells killed after the alcohol crosses the blood brain barrier.
  • Doctor bills. I just don't have a need to see an MD. I do get regular chiropractic care, but I keep the cost down by enrolling in a prepay plan.
  • Prescription drugs. Most people my age are on multiple prescription drugs and the problem gets worse as they get older. Instead of buying those drugs, buy fresh produce. The vast majority of problems those drugs treat are due to poor food choices. By "vast majority" I mean 100% of the problems for 99.999% of the people on these drugs.
  • Annual wardrobe changes. Buy clothes that are trendy, and you end up replacing them when the trend is gone. Who passed a law that says you have to buy "what's hot" when "what's hot" has been determined by advertising not by well-thought consumer choices? Buy clothes with an eye to wearing each item for at least ten years. The cost-savings are huge.
  • Lots of cheap shoes. Creating a large shoe collection is expensive, so many people sacrifice quality to get the quantity. They end up replacing shoes often, and the cheap shoes give them back pain, neck pain, and other problems. Buy quality shoes, and take care of them. Buy with an eye to wardrobe compatibility, not to individual shoe style.
  • Lawn care services. OK, for some people, this expenditure for normal lawn chores makes sense. And for big projects, hiring a pro is almost always the better way to go. But think long and hard about paying somebody to do work that gets you outside for healthy exercise. If you are time-strapped, consider hiring a maid service to reduce your indoor housework and use the time savings to enjoy the outdoors. I don't pay for maid service either, I'm just saying be careful what you outsource to save time. Some of those time-consuming chores have benefits that are worth the time taken to do the chores.

There are many other things I could describe, such as:

  • Dining out.
  • "Generous" cell phone plans.
  • Television subscriptions (I don't watch TV at all).
  • Frequent technology upgrades.
  • Processed foods.
  • Gym membership (I mean general fitness gyms, not climbing gyms; I have my own equipment).

My general pattern has been to determine what I need instead of what I want. Being a debt slave just to have material things that you really don't need is an exercise in irrationality. Yes, buy good quality. But you don't have to own the top of the line. It's also an exercise in irrationality to pay for services you don't need (some are mentioned above).

There is also a big trend in the USA to rack up massive debt through self-mutilation. The logic of pouring acid on your teeth and then feeding the "bad" bacteria that cause tooth decay escapes me. Yet, millions of people find this odd behavior perfectly acceptable. The real question is whether to call sodas "osteoporosis in a can" because of the bone damage they cause, or to call them "tooth decay in a can" because of the tooth and gum disease they cause.

To save on dental costs in the near future and nursing home costs in your old age, dump out any soda that might be in your home and don't let another bottle or can of that poison enter your home. Ever. You're not "giving up soda," you are choosing freedom. As with all expenditures of your limited capital, your choices push you in one direction (freedom) or the other (slavery).

Freedom or slavery. Do you really need to mull over which choice is better?

5. Security tip

Mark Robinson gives an impressive "I am the majority" speech. He makes point after point, logically, eloquently, and forcefully. This amazing speech was impromptu. And it bears on a core aspect of personal security.

6. Health tip/Fitness tips

Here are some common myths that will make you fatter, sicker, and dumber if you believe them. After each myth, I write the truth:
  • Fat-free yogurt is good for you. I used to believe this lie, too. But the fat is what binds the yogurt and gives it a desirable consistency and texture. To get these attributes without the fat, makers of this stuff and starches and other binding agents. You now have something that sends your endocrine system into a tailspin. Don't eat the "fat-free" version of anything.
  • Calcium-enriched orange juice is good for your bones. Orange juice is a potent endocrine modifier. It sends your insulin sky high and depresses your testosterone to zero. Testosterone is what signals your body to store calcium in your bones. The fortification is a complete waste, you simply urinate it out.
  • Diet-free soda is the healthy alternative to sugary soda. It's still acidic enough to corrode your tooth enamel, it still causes acid reflux (which vastly increases the risk of esophageal cancer), it's still overloaded with sodium, and it still tastes terrible.
  • Kitchen sponges harbor bacteria. Well, this is true if you don't routinely dry those sponges. I have a sponge rack and I microwave my sponges often. And I run them through the dishwasher (and microwave them afterwards). Wet sponges harbor bacteria, and soapy ones feed the bacteria. Dry or don't use.
  • Polyester bedding is superior to cotton because it doesn't wrinkle. It doesn't breathe, either, which is why it smells bad after a single use. Cotton bedding does not wrinkle if washed with minimal detergent (about 20% of what's recommended) and then allowed to air dry. Polyester also melts into your skin if exposed to high heat; keep it away from your body in your kitchen, sleeping rooms and places where you may use power tools or open flame.
  • Popular cleaning solutions help keep your home clean. Actually, they pollute it with various carcinogens and other toxins. Use vinegar, baking soda, and borax wherever possible. And there are many possibilities.
  • Broadleaf weed killer is the best way to get rid of dandelions. It harms the soil and the person using it. Also pets and kids come into contact with it by touch and by breathing it in. Spray dandelions with vinegar, and you kill the plant. I use the same spray bottle that I use for household cleaning. The dandelions remain edible and they are very nutritious. So you can use vinegar to prevent a massive dandelion invasion and still add the greens to your salad.

Lose weight, be strong, burn fat, gain muscle

Lose weight, be strong, burn fat, gain muscle

Top photo taken 16SEP2016, just days before 56th birthday; bottom photo taken 3 days after 56th birthday

  • The only way to get a muscular body is to spend long hours at the gym. Almost anyone with a muscular body will tell you this is not true. Eight-time Mr. Olympia Lee Haney is fond of saying, "You want to stimulate, not annihilate, your muscles." Yes, people who take steroids can spend much more time training. But they don't do well in the long run. This "long hours at the gym" thing is an excuse unfit people use to avoid training. Serious athletes all understand the concept of overtraining and we schedule our training accordingly.
  • You have to lift heavy. What you have to do is put the muscles under near-maximum tension. If you can make the exercise harder through isolation, "heavy" can be significantly less than what might otherwise be used. Your body doesn't know many pounds you are lifting. What it senses is the stress you put your muscles under. One of my climbing buddies explained it this way: "The guy squatting with 300lbs on back and barely dipping his knees is lifting many pounds. But the guy doing one-legged squats with only body weight and going all the way down is the one doing the real workout."
  • Momentum lifting makes you quicker. The "logic" behind this is you're practicing the athletic movement; so do the same movement with weight and you get faster. This flies in the face of traditional martial arts training, which does produce very fast hands and feet. Momentum lifting simply moves the weight. At the end of the movement, that weight has to stop. The force that's generated as a result of mass x speed means you damage connective tissue and the ends of your bones. And since your muscles weren't under tension, that exercise doesn't make them stronger. All you're developing with momentum lifting are injuries.
  • Working long hours now will enable you to have more security for retirement. That depends on how you define "long." If those extra hours leave you feeling stressed and burned out, they are producing zero additional benefit. You do your best work when you have high energy, not when you can barely keep your eyes open.
  • Staying up late helps you get more done. No, it simply leaves you sleep deprived. The bad news is that full recovery takes up to five weeks. Sleep deprivation lowers both your immunity and your IQ. The brain doesn't have a lymph system to remove waste, as the rest of the body does. To remove waste, the brain uses the circulatory system and it can do that only when you are asleep. Researchers now believe sleep deprivation is one of the primary triggers for Alzheimer's. They used to see the link because inability to sleep is a symptom of AD. Now they see the link because they have verified how the brain gets rid of waste.
  • A smartphone makes you smarter, because you can always look things up. Sadly, what's been happening (especially among younger people) is rather than take the time to learn and have a contextual understanding of a subject, people waste time excessively texting and then look things up if they don't know. A big problem there is they don't have the context to understand what they looked up. They don't even know that they don't know, and often they don't know what to look up. They just remain ignorant, uninformed, disinformed, or all three. You can, for example, find all kinds of bad training advice online. But if you understand the basics, you can filter out the bad advice and properly apply the good advice.
  • Multitasking allows you to get more done. It reduces total output, for reasons that are well-documented. Don't delude yourself into believing that you are getting more done by switching your attention back and forth rather than focusing on one task to efficiently get it done. It's also well-documented that the quality of multi-tasked work is significantly worse than uni-tasked work. In effect, multi-tasking is a voluntary slashing of your IQ. By definition, that's not a smart thing to do.

    If you've been on the phone with someone who is answering e-mail or texting during the conversation, you have a good example of this. Note also that the LASER is so powerful because the light is so focused. In martial arts, it's focus or defeat. And there's a good reason that nobody texts while climbing; it's called gravity.

At, you'll find plenty of informative, authoritative articles on maintaining a lean, strong physique. It has nothing to do with long workouts or impossible to maintain diets. In fact:
  • The best workouts are short and intense.
  • A good diet contains far more flavors and satisfaction than the typical American diet.

7. Factoid

So-called multi-tasking is a delusion that wastes time, increases error rates, and lowers quality of performance. To manage your time better, prioritize tasks and concentrate on them one at a time. There's no "debate" or "other side of the story" on this, because of basic brain physiology.

8. Thought for the Day

People who go into debt to acquire status symbols don't realize that they are signaling an image not of success but of their own deep insecurity.


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The views expressed in this e-newsletter are generally not shared by criminals, zombies, or brainwashed individuals.

Except where noted, this e-newsletter is entirely the work of Mark Lamendola. Anything presented as fact can be independently verified. Often, sources are given; but where not given, they are readily available to anyone who makes the effort.

Mark provides information from either research or his own areas of established expertise. Sometimes, what appears to be a personal opinion is the only possibility when applying sound logic--reason it out before judging! (That said, some personal opinions do appear on occasion).

The purpose of this publication is to inform and empower its readers (and save you money!).

Personal note from Mark: I value each and every one of you, and I hope that shows in the diligent effort I put into writing this e-newsletter. Thank you for being a faithful reader. Please pass this newsletter along to others.

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