Health, Myths, Fraud and the Crisis

Archive for August, 2011

“Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish.” – Steve Jobs’ 2005 Stanford Commencement Address

I’m Glad I Dropped Out of College

by Steve Jobs (1955-2011)


This is the text of the Commencement address by Steve Jobs, CEO of Apple Computer and of Pixar Animation Studios, delivered on June 12, 2005.

I am honored to be with you today at your commencement from one of the finest universities in the world. I never graduated from college. Truth be told, this is the closest I’ve ever gotten to a college graduation. Today I want to tell you three stories from my life. That’s it. No big deal. Just three stories.

The first story is about connecting the dots.

I dropped out of Reed College after the first 6 months, but then stayed around as a drop-in for another 18 months or so before I really quit. So why did I drop out?

It started before I was born. My biological mother was a young, unwed college graduate student, and she decided to put me up for adoption. She felt very strongly that I should be adopted by college graduates, so everything was all set for me to be adopted at birth by a lawyer and his wife. Except that when I popped out they decided at the last minute that they really wanted a girl. So my parents, who were on a waiting list, got a call in the middle of the night asking: “We have an unexpected baby boy; do you want him?” They said: “Of course.” My biological mother later found out that my mother had never graduated from college and that my father had never graduated from high school. She refused to sign the final adoption papers. She only relented a few months later when my parents promised that I would someday go to college.

And 17 years later I did go to college. But I naively chose a college that was almost as expensive as Stanford, and all of my working-class parents’ savings were being spent on my college tuition. After six months, I couldn’t see the value in it. I had no idea what I wanted to do with my life and no idea how college was going to help me figure it out. And here I was spending all of the money my parents had saved their entire life. So I decided to drop out and trust that it would all work out OK. It was pretty scary at the time, but looking back it was one of the best decisions I ever made. The minute I dropped out I could stop taking the required classes that didn’t interest me, and begin dropping in on the ones that looked interesting.

It wasn’t all romantic. I didn’t have a dorm room, so I slept on the floor in friends’ rooms, I returned coke bottles for the 5¢ deposits to buy food with, and I would walk the 7 miles across town every Sunday night to get one good meal a week at the Hare Krishna temple. I loved it. And much of what I stumbled into by following my curiosity and intuition turned out to be priceless later on. Let me give you one example:

Reed College at that time offered perhaps the best calligraphy instruction in the country. Throughout the campus every poster, every label on every drawer, was beautifully hand calligraphed. Because I had dropped out and didn’t have to take the normal classes, I decided to take a calligraphy class to learn how to do this. I learned about serif and san serif typefaces, about varying the amount of space between different letter combinations, about what makes great typography great. It was beautiful, historical, artistically subtle in a way that science can’t capture, and I found it fascinating.

None of this had even a hope of any practical application in my life. But ten years later, when we were designing the first Macintosh computer, it all came back to me. And we designed it all into the Mac. It was the first computer with beautiful typography. If I had never dropped in on that single course in college, the Mac would have never had multiple typefaces or proportionally spaced fonts. And since Windows just copied the Mac, its likely that no personal computer would have them. If I had never dropped out, I would have never dropped in on this calligraphy class, and personal computers might not have the wonderful typography that they do. Of course it was impossible to connect the dots looking forward when I was in college. But it was very, very clear looking backwards ten years later.

Again, you can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future. You have to trust in something – your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever. This approach has never let me down, and it has made all the difference in my life.

My second story is about love and loss. (more…)

Turmeric against Alzheimer’s

Turmeric powder

Image via Wikipedia

I already reported on the many health effects of curcumin (turmeric) on multiple myeloma, pancreatic cancer, myelodysplastic syndromes, colon cancer, psoriasis, and Alzheimer’s disease. – one of the basic ingredients of curry. The material contained in turmeric, curcumin protects not only the liver but can – according to a study by the University of California prevent plaque formation in the brain directly – in Los Angeles (UCLA). Since turmeric is a very popular spice in India, where Alzheimer’s occurs only very rarely, it was assumed before the study referred to a causal relationship, which has now apparently confirmed Turmeric can be scattered in all the vegetables, rice and pasta dishes. It fits well to legumes and meat dishes. Particularly simple, the daily supply of turmeric can be done with tea. Enter a pinch (or more – according to Taste) of the yellow turmeric powder in a cup with hot water and drink the tea slowly and with relish.

 

Fukushima getting worse

Dedicated to those friends who studied physics some 4o years ago and therefore believe they understand what is happening in Fukushima -:)

Asahi: Report suggests second meltdown at reactor at Fukushima plant

NYT Japan Held Nuclear Data, Leaving Evacuees in Peril

Professor Tatsuhiko Kodama of Tokyo University appears to be very angry :

Professor Tatsuhiko Kodama is the head of the Radioisotope Center at the University of Tokyo. On July 27, he appeared as a witness to give testimony to the Committee on Welfare and Labor in Japan’s Lower House in the Diet.

Org. videos with subtitles part 1/2:

Defining Being “Rich” in America

From the AmpedStatus Report:

The graph below, based on data from the Tax Policy Center, shows how much income is earned by a household at any given percentile in income distribution:

The highest bracket for annual income is $50 million or more. Only 74 Americans are in this elite group. The average income within this category was $91.2 million [39] in 2008. As astonishing as that is, in 2009 they averaged $518.8 million [39] each, or about $10 million per week. This means, in the depths of the recession, the richest 74 Americans increased their income by more than 5 times within this one year.

William Domhoff, sociology professor and author of Who Rules America?:

“Unlike those in the lower half of the top 1%, those in the top half and, particularly, top 0.1%, can often borrow for almost nothing, keep profits and production overseas, hold personal assets in tax havens, ride out down markets and economies, and influence legislation in the US. They have access to the very best in accounting firms, tax and other attorneys, numerous consultants, private wealth managers, a network of other wealthy and powerful friends, lucrative business opportunities, and many other benefits. Folks in the top 0.1% come from many backgrounds but it’s infrequent to meet one whose wealth wasn’t acquired through direct or indirect participation in the financial and banking industries…. Most of the serious economic damage the US is struggling with today was done by the top 0.1% and they benefited greatly from it…. For example, in Q1 of 2011, America’s top corporations reported 31% profit growth and a 31% reduction in taxes, the latter due to profit outsourcing to low tax rate countries…. The year 2010 was a record year for compensation on Wall Street, while corporate CEO compensation rose by over 30%.…

In 2010 a dozen major companies, including GE, Verizon, Boeing, Wells Fargo, and Fed Ex paid US tax rates between -0.7% and -9.2%. Production, employment, profits, and taxes have all been outsourced….

I could go on and on, but the bottom line is this: A highly complex and largely discrete set of laws and exemptions from laws has been put in place by those in the uppermost reaches of

the US financial system. It allows them to protect and increase their wealth and significantly affect the US political and legislative processes.

They have real power and real wealth. Ordinary citizens in the bottom 99.9% are largely not aware of these systems, do not understand how they work, are unlikely to participate in them,

and have little likelihood of entering the top 0.5%, much less the top 0.1%….

… the American dream of striking it rich is merely a well-marketed fantasy that keeps the bottom 99.5% hoping for better and prevents social and political instability. The

odds of getting into that top 0.5% are very slim and the door is kept firmly shut by those within it.”

“To get into the top economic 0.01% (one-hundredth of one percent) of the population, you have to have a household income of over $27 million [52] per year.

If you look at some of the central players who caused this economic crisis, you will see that they are among this Economic Elite group.”

Which of course somehow fits to this picture:

Which reminds me of Karl Marx:

At some point capitalism will destroy itself, because you can’t keep shifting income from labor to capital without not having excess-capacity and a lack of aggregate demand.

Financial Health: A Deflationary Accident Coming?

Highly recommended interview of Felix Zulauf by Jim Puplava (some basic knowledge of economics might be required) :

The Road to Perdition

7 Things McDonald’s Knows About Your Brain

The fast food industry can read your mind.
Many recent neuroscience discoveries about food’s effects on our brains and how we make decisions about food are actually gold-standard

trade secrets from super chains such as McDonald’s. With billions and billions served, they must be on to something.

A Little Exercise May Protect The Aging Brain From Memory Loss

The Journal of Neuroscience reported a new study nn the August 10 issue regarding memory loss after bacterial infections.

A small amount of exercise shielded older animals from memory loss following a bacterial infection. In the study, researchers led by Ruth Barrientos, PhD, of the University of Colorado at Boulder, found running on an exercise wheel protected older rats from memory loss following an Escherichia coli (E. coli) infection.

The findings suggest moderate exercise may lead to several changes in the brain that boost its ability to protect itself during aging in a period of increased vulnerability.

“This is the first study to show that exercise reduces susceptibility to the cognitive impairments that follow infection in aging animals, and the changes taking place in the brain thought to underlie these impairments,” Barrientos said.

“While many of us are hopeful about developing a pharmaceutical intervention to reverse the effects of aging, this study provides exciting evidence that a little moderate exercise is protective against age-related problems with health and immunity,” said Jonathan Godbout, PhD, an expert on aging at Ohio State University, who was unaffiliated with the study.

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