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. The Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) has made
several bad rulings in the past 10 years, and when Justice Scalia was alive he
wrote scathing dissents. Many of these have involved civil liberties, such as
the 4th Amendment cases the SCOTUS failed to decide lawfully or even rationally.
Civil liberties got a lift from the SCOTUS in a recent 8th Amendment case that
Reason Magazine wrote about before the SCOTUS decided to hear it. Now that the
case is decided and the SCOTUS actually upheld the rule of law for a change, we
have very good news. Read the full story here:
Item 2. Thanks to the long overdue Tax Reform Act, millions of
Americans are getting big refunds on their 1040 payments this year. Since the
1040 system costs vastly more than it takes in, both the victim payers and the
Treasury would be way ahead if we could scrap it.
If we scrap this revenue-negative system, what about all those IRS employees?
Well, criminals belong in jail. Those "working" in the Collections department
should simply swap places with the innocent people who went to prison for
violating illegal drug laws. That would be justice and it would be good news.
Item 3. Penn State Hershey Medical Center has ended live animal use.
According to the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine, the dean of the
Penn State College of Medicine said, “There are no plans to use live pigs in
training our emergency medicine residents in the future. In a news release, PRCM
said, "The medical center now joins the 95 percent (253 of 267) of surveyed
emergency medicine residencies in the United States and Canada that exclusively
use human-relevant training methods." If you're interested in supporting this
committee, you can find them at www.pcrm.org.
2. Product Highlight
The ReadingPen2 Reading Assistive Scanning Pen
You scan, it reads to you.
- Hear text read to you. Just scan a word or line of text, and the Reading
Pen 2 reads it to you (earbuds included, for privacy).
- Helps with reading fluency and comprehension.
- Currently used by many schools to help both dyslexic and non-dyslexic
students and by some state agencies to help adults with reading
- Speaks (and shows) letter by letter spelling, synonyms, and definitions
of scanned words or lines.
- Shows the syllabication onscreen. Also has one-touch translation to
- Provides definitions and other information from the American Heritage
Children's Dictionary and Thesaurus, American Heritage College Dictionary,
and Roget's II Thesaurus.
- Easy to use. Recommended for adults and children age 10 and up.
- Mobile, completely self-contained, requires no computer.
Buy yours now.
Mindconnection, LLC is an Authorized Wizcom Distributor. And we have
been, since 1998.
3. Brainpower tip
How well do you engage in these seven brain-building habits?|
- Read. Arguably, nothing has more brain boosting ability than reading
does. Reading builds brainpower in multiple ways, including positive effects
on the physical brain itself.
- Sleep. When you're sleeping, your brain is able to offload its organic
waste. If sleep is inadequate, your brain function is impaired. The
relationship isn't linear; a little sleep deprivation has a big effect.
- Discuss. Find intelligent, informed people to have discussions with.
While the discussions don't always have to be deep, avoid wasting that time
talking about the weather or professional sports or anything else
- Respect. You may be surprised to see this one on the list. But people
who don't respect others tend to get left out of information loops and tend
to argue instead of listen.
- Eat. The brain requires energy. Lots of it. Skipping meals and other
forms of eating dysfunction not only have deleterious effects on your health
and appearance, they make you dumber.
- Think. For most people, thinking just never happens. They react to the
barrage of inputs they receive all day long, but slow down to carefully
think about anything. It takes focus, patience, and dedication to make
thinking a habit.
- Discern. Rather than treat all inputs as the same (importance, value,
veracity, etc.) evaluate the differences and similarities between those
inputs so you can correctly characterize them. For example, when is
something a fact rather than an opinion an vice-versa?
4. Finance tip
Potable water is becoming increasingly scarce throughout the world. The basic
problem is we pump aquifers dry faster than they can be replenished. For many
major aquifers, it will take a century to put them back to where they were a
I happen to live above one of the world's largest aquifers, the
Ogallala. It stretches from South Dakota into Texas, and from Colorado and New
Mexico to eastern Kansas. Much of the water pumped from the Ogallala is used to
grow toxic wheat in arid western Kansas.
Once water hits a tipping point in the supply, prices will skyrocket. That
day for most people isn't decades away, it's years away. And, yes, that includes
people in the USA.
What you can do:
- Conserve water now both to lower your current water bill and to help
delay the disaster that is coming.
- Alert others to the problem. Look online and/or obtain relevant
documentary films from your library system, so you are prepared to discuss
the reality of this situation.
Some ways to conserve water:
- Don't double wash your dishes. Yes, rinse eggs and other "it won't come
off in the dishwasher once it dries on there" stuff from plates. But
generally, either wash by hand or use the dishwasher. Not both. And you do
not even need to rinse dishes before putting them in the dishwasher, so
don't do that.
- Set the dishwasher to use less water. Better models have econo modes and
- When using the faucet, open it halfway or less rather than all the way.
- Don't run the tap while brushing your teeth. Run it to rinse, then shut
it off until you need to rinse again.
- While distasteful to some, the "if it's yellow, let it mellow" approach
to our toilet use can hugely save water.
- Don't water your lawn just to keep it green. Water it only if it's been
10 days with insufficient rain; then, soak one inch and stop watering.
- If you replace your clothes washer, get a front loader.
- Repair or replace any leaky faucets.
- If you live in a hard water location, keep a spare toilet tank repair
kit on hand. That way, you can stop the water waste without first having to
make a trip to the store for the kit.
- Use a water-saving shower head. The cheap ones just restrict water,
giving you a poor shower experience. The good ones add air to the water, so
you don't get that "it's spitting on me" feeling yet you still save water.
More ways to conserve water:
- Reduce the amount of meat you eat, or eliminate it from your diet
entirely. Meat is very water-intensive to produce. If you replace the meat
with beans, rice, kale, bok choy, and other amino acid rich foods, you'll
save a few hundred gallons of water waste every week (look it up, the
figures are staggering).
- Totally eliminate "processed food" from your diet. Once it's processed,
it's no longer food. It takes huge amounts of water to treat the diseases
caused by eating debauched former food, and it takes huge amounts of water
to debauch the food in the first place.
- Write to Bill Gates. Seriously. Mr. Gates has decided to solve the
toilet problem. Today's toilets waste water, especially if they are "water
saving" versions. And they have other faults that we're all well aware of.
I'm not sure Mr. Gates will come up with a reliable design that is a
pleasure to use. After all, he left us with Microsoft Windows which is
unreliable and not a pleasure to use. But maybe he will have better luck
5. Security tip
6. Health tip/Fitness tips
How do you prepare for a workout? Here are some common preparation steps:
- Take a preworkout supplement.
- Consume an energy drink.
- Do cardio.
- Eat or carbo load.
These are all mistakes. Let's see why, and then what to do instead.
- Stretch. Then you're going to turn around and compress that same
muscle? This makes no sense. But the real problem is that when you
stretch (elongate) a muscle, you make it weaker; this endangers your
joints when you then put force through them.
- Take a preworkout supplement. There's nothing in a preworkout
supplement that you can't consume much earlier. Or, as in the case of
creatine, should consume long before a workout. Most of these
supplements actually contain nothing that will improve your workout yet
do contain ingredients that can impair it (such as massive doses of
Photo taken about one week before 40th High School Class Reunion
- Consume an energy drink. I don't like the phrase "energy drink" and
if you read the ingredients of these "worse than useless" products you
will see why. Typically, these are loaded with massive amounts of
caffeine, which means you're going to be high when working out. In the
preworkout supplements mentioned earlier, you may see "Increases focus"
or similar on the bottle; this is code for "outrageous amounts of
caffeine". You actually lose focus, not gain it, when overdosing on this
- Do cardio. First of all, if you train correctly there is no need for
"cardio" (treadmill, cycling, spinning, jogging, etc.)Second, why would
you want to use up energy just prior to training when intensity requires
- Eat or carbo load. While it's true you need energy for a good
training session, it is not true you need to eat or "carbo load" prior
to training. A meal right before training is likely to degrade the
quality of the session. The idea of carbo loading is you get the energy
of the meal without the downside of having to digest one; but this
practice is counterproductive. Your body's response to the carbs is to
secrete insulin. Insulin is antagonistic to testosterone. So instead of
getting the desired adaptive response from your endocrine system, your
hard training gets you zip.
So how should you prepare for a workout? Here are the steps, in the
- Get your mind in gear. This is the first, and most important, step.
If you can't be fully there during your training, your training will
suffer. And your chance of injury is greater. You need to focus as you
train. If your mind is wandering, you are wasting much of the session.
- Review your training plan. What exercises are you going to do in
this session? How many sets, and in what order?
- Inspect the equipment. If you have a home gym, just make sure things
are set so you can work out efficiently. If you are using a public gym,
make sure any equipment you will need is available and in safe working
- Align joints. This is important for older athletes and/or those with
specific joint issues. For example, people who have had frozen shoulder
would do well to push their shoulder blades back using the door jamb
exercise. See your chiropractor or physical therapist if any of this
applies to you. It's not the same as stretching, so don't confuse the
- Do a proper warm-up. This doesn't mean get generally warm. It means
to activate the target muscles with specific exercises. Vince Del Monte
offers a good activation guide on video at a bargain price; if you don't
do activation now, you should get Vince's video.
You can see there is a profound difference between the first list and
the second one. Most people never get their mind in gear, don't even
have a training plan to review, don't think about the equipment until
they go to do an exercise that requires it, don't think about joint
alignment, and don't warm up to get activation.
But if you do these
things, your workouts will be safer and more productive.
www.supplecity.com, 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.
Drinking soda (soft drinks) is the cause of nearly every case of esophageal
8. Thought for the Day
When cheese gets its picture taken, what does it say?|
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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.
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