Groucho Marx

Blog Archive – June 2005

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“ It has become appallingly obvious that our technology has exceeded our humanity. ”
Albert Einstein

“ It is because Humanity has never known where it was going that it has been able to find its way. ”
Oscar Wilde

June 23 2005

NO go

Well, there've been a few replies to all the emails I've sent. Brief, polite, non-committal. I've also been reading about Mark Purdey's experiences in pursuit of the cause of BSE. Enough said.

Meanwhile, a bit more nitrogenous sleuthing has revealed that nitric oxide research is about the sexiest thing going in the biological sciences right now. It's been linked with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Fibromyalgia, Inflammation-mediated Neurodegeneration, a collective term for such conditions as Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, MS, ALS and AIDS dementia, Multiple Chemical Sensitivity, even Post-traumatic Stress Disorder. The latter is especially interesting in view of the fact that this condition started life as "shell shock"; a result of over-exposure to battlefield environments. The air of battlefields is, of course, notoriously full of cordite which is 40% nitrocellulose, 60% nitroglycerine. (Thanks to Carol Willis for supplying many of the links.)

Surely no coincidence that these are all modern syndromes, and as such potentially also correlate to the increases of fixed nitrogen in the environment? Except for shell shock, that is, but then that has a correlation to a potential role for nitrogen too. And surely no accident that we should be waking up to nitric oxide's role in a wide variety of metabolic processes at a time when its role is becoming more obvious and significant?

June 23 2005 | | | Permalink

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“ It always seemed strange to me that the things we admire in men, kindness and generosity, openness, honesty, understanding and feeling are the concomitants of failure in our system. And those traits we detest, sharpness, greed, aquisitiveness, meanness, egotism and self-interest are the traits of success. And while men admire the quality of the first, they love the produce of the second. ”
John Steinbeck

June 21 2005

There really is no such thing as coincidence. The very same day I posted the last blog entry, Mike Adams, the 'Health Ranger' at newstarget.com, posted this story.

Welcome to the town of Allopath

There once was a town called Allopath. It had many people, streets and cars, but due to budget limitations, there were no stop signs or traffic lights anywhere in Allopath.

Not surprisingly, traffic accidents were common. Cars would crash into each other at nearly every intersection. But business was booming for the auto repair shops and local hospitals, which dominated the economy of Allopath.

As the population of Allopath grew, traffic accidents increased to an alarming level. Out of desperation, the city council hired Doctor West, a doctor of the Motor Division (M.D.) to find a solution.

Read on ...

June 21 2005 | | | Permalink

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“ History is merely a list of surprises. It can only prepare us to be surprised yet again. ”
Kurt Vonnegut

“ If at first the idea is not absurd, then there is no hope for it. ”
Albert Einstein

“ Anyone who thinks they are too small to make a difference has never been in bed with a mosquito. ”
Tenzin Gyatso, the 14th Dalai Lama

June 19 2005

NO show

I got to thinking about June 8th's entry, wondering if it was something with real substance worth a bit more investigation. It seems so. I've spent the last 10 days researching this and even in just that short space of time the evidence looks overwhelming. There is so much of it that all it seemed to be waiting for was for someone to stand far back enough from it to be able to join the dots. What I've found has ended up as a full article which you can find here.

In short, it does actually look as if our global disruption of the Earth's Nitrogen Cycle is responsible for cardiovascular disease (and a few other things besides).

Starting Thursday, I've been trying to interest the press, medical journals and researchers in the field to see if it looks as plausible to the experts as it does to me from the periphery. So far no response. Well if someone from completely left of field wrote in saying they thought they'd managed to pinpoint the underlying cause of cardiovascular disease, CRACKPOT!! would be the understandably instant conclusion. It's too preposterous to be believed. I can only hope that someone somewhere takes the risk of actually reading it.

Please let me know if you think it makes as much sense as I do. And if you do, pass the word around. If it stands up to closer scrutiny, then the sooner global policy-makers pay this issue some serious attention, the sooner something can be done about it.

One could, of course, take a step even further back and admire the ability of the Earth's ecosystem (of which we are very much part) to keep itself in overall balance. In an attempt to increase the food supply to support a growing population of humans, we have unnaturally boosted the average yield of the soil. Yet the means by which we have done so is killing us off in ever increasing numbers. It seems that there is an overall optimum number of humans the Earth will support which it's unlikely to let us exceed. So any measures taken to address the nitrogen cycle imbalance will also need to take into account population dynamics on a global scale.

We have a tendency to pull together in times of crisis and threats to survival. Is it too much to hope that this one issue could unite the world to address this situation together? This touches each and every one of us. How many of us have grandparents, parents, brothers, sisters, husbands, wives, children dying of these diseases, if not ourselves as well? (I know, I know ... dream on! But I do!)

June 19 2005 | | | Permalink

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What do these photographs all have in common? Read on to find out.


Luxury housing

McMansions

Road rage

Road rage

Obesity

McMansions

Nitrate fertilisers

Chemical fertilisers

Beef production

McMillions

Heart disease

Heart disease

June 08 2005

Oh NO

In the wake of a conversation about housing developments, of all things, I found myself back in Jan Scholten's matrix of the Periodic Table of Elements. (See last month's blog.)

In dream symbolism the house is frequently taken as a representation of the self. Of course, that symbolism is no less valid in waking life as well. Our houses are very much an external representation of ourselves. So looking at trends in housing development and the property/real estate markets in various countries can provide quite a nice symbolic illustration of the current generalised state of the national psyche. For instance, in countries where ownership of your home is important and highly valued both psychologically and financially (such as in Britain and the US), then the right to self-ownership, self-determination, is similarly highly valued.

The subject came up in conversation because I was talking to an American friend about the extent to which property values, and particularly land values, have skyrocketed in the area where I live in the last year or so. She mentioned that the same thing was going on her side of the Pond. "Here, they are building like crazy – many are going for new houses, though in these housing developments that are generally ug-ly! Many McMansions. Big houses, way overpriced, poorly made, and way too close together." Which is exactly the situation here in Britain too. Here "self-build" is all the rage. The use of those words in this context is interesting, because what "self-build" seems to involve in many cases is buying your plot of land and then picking a house out of a catalogue and having someone else build it for you. Perhaps I'm being pedantic here, but that doesn't quite gel with what "self-build" says to me.

It seems all a bit reminiscent of the whole self-improvement/ self-development arena which has so many on the treadmill of course after course in this, that and the next thing just because everyone else is doing  it. And the lifestyle gurus say it's "good for you", so it must be, eh? And of course it's what all the celebs are into, isn't it? It's fashionable. Yet all too often these courses are poorly built, over-priced, lack substance, and involve someone else doing most of it for you. They're about as much to do with self-build as all these new houses.

And once you've got your house, then there's the question of what you do with it. Wheel in the TV makeover teams. The interior designers, the landscape designers .... And while they're doing that, why not bring in a wardrobe consultant, a life coach, a hair stylist, a makeup artist and get yourself made over too (possibly in more ways than you imagined). Celebrity! Luxury! Affluence! Abundance! We can't get enough of it. And if we can't get it for ourselves then we can get it vicariously through the innumerable TV shows devoted to the subject. There's at least one a day. (Of course it all looks very nice, but is it you? Isn't it all just a bit hollow and empty? A sham? Is it any accident that all the winning contestants from Big Brother and its clones seem to have just one quality in common? Authenticity. Whoever they are, they're genuine, they're themselves: which is ultimately the one saving grace of these programmes ... if we can at least still recognise and appreciate that quality, then there's hope for the human race.)

Coming back to the trends in our housing, we then have the tendency to expansion, bloating, over-inflation. An interesting development, occuring as it does alongside a similar over-inflation of ego, of self-centredness. Yet that over-inflation is fragile. It's disproportionate. It needs protection, padding, insulation. So our houses all huddle together and we pile the fat on our bodies. Our cars – similarly ego extensions – are getting bigger and acquiring more padding and insulation between their inner and outer skins. (Compare today's Mini Coopers with the originals.) We're getting more aggressive (particularly in our cars), and more explosive.

Yet despite all this abundance, this over-inflation, this aggression, we're big on victim mentality. We're perpetually hard done by. It's always someone else's fault. The world is full of abusers. It's not fair. And on and on. Moaning, complaining (though rarely to the people likely to make any difference).

Anyone familiar with Jan Scholten's system may be recognising the themes of the two elements coming into view here. Nitrogen and Oxygen.

Nitrogen and Oxygen both belong to the Carbon series which focuses on the individual, the ego, I, self-worth, value, meaning, ethics, body, life, vitality, lust, possessions, the life-stage of the child. The stages they represent are loss and decay, giving the specific elemental themes of:

Nitrogen: assertiveness, expansion, enthusiasm, enjoyment, forgiving/unforgiving, tension and relaxation, hypochondria

Oxygen: egotism, demanding, used/abused, indignation, victim, beggar, debt, decomposition

It's interesting too to look at the nature of substances that combine these two elements. Take Nitrous oxide. N2O. Laughing gas. Is it any accident that we laugh most frequently at the expense of other's egos, and that popular humour in recent years has revolved around that to a greater and greater extent? Or that such a substance should also be used to give an enormous power boost to car engines? Or that it has anaesthetic properties? Or confers a high degree of suggestibility?

Then there are the nitrates (NO3-) which combine the qualities of these two elements with whatever other element they are conjoined with. Widely used as fertilisers. And in explosives.

And is it at all surprising that we should be this way if, with every breath we take, we're reinforcing the imprint of those elements? Perhaps not. Yet the atmospheric proportions of nitrogen and oxygen have been pretty constant throughout the existence of the human race. Why should these qualities be on the increase? Could it have anything to do with all the nitrates used as fertilisers? With high protein diets (nitrogen being an essential component of amino acids, the building blocks of protein)?

According to a 1999 report from the World Resources Institute, Critical Consumption Trends and Implications; Degrading Earth’s Ecosystems, "World cereal consumption has more than doubled in the last 30 years, while meat consumption has tripled since 1961 and is increasing at a linear rate. The agricultural success story is that rising demand has been met; more people are now better fed than they were a generation ago. One of the many environmental consequences, only now becoming clear, is significant disruption of the global nitrogen cycle. In the past half century, the application of inorganic nitrogen fertilizers world-wide has increased more than ninefold, and the number of livestock has more than doubled since 1960. Fertilizers and animal manures have increased and concentrated, respectively, the amount of nitrogen entering soils, freshwater and marine ecosystems. Human activity has actually doubled the natural annual rate of nitrogen fixation, and by far the largest single cause is agriculture."

The rest of this report is well worth a read. It's the current Article of the Moment.

If making a connection between the changes in the national psyche over the last few decades and increases in nitrate consumption is valid, we should be able to find equally close correlations between the pathology of the nitrates and the pathology of the nation. The homeopathic remedies prepared from nitrates (the nitricums) should be able to show us very clearly what to expect. The main sphere of pathology of the nitricum remedies is – surprise, surprise – cardiovascular disease. The number one killer * in both the US and UK (and most of the developed world, come to that). The cause of death of one in three of us on average. Arteriosclerosis, angina, claudication, palpitations, arrhythmias, cerebral vascular disease and haemorrhage ... cerebral vascular disease? Oh yes, that's the number two cause of death throughout most of the developed world. Obesity, which is reaching epidemic proportions in the US and rapidly increasing in the UK. The nitricums also have affinity for the skin – red patches, allergies. Congestive conditions. Lung complaints. Tuberculosis. Tiredness. Liver and kidney problems.

Seems we might be paying a very high price for our enjoyment of the good life. Perhaps rather higher than we thought ...

[* page 17, table 1339]

June 08 2005 | | | Permalink

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smeddum.net – Blog: Confessions of a Serial Prover. Weblog on homeopathy, health and related subjects by homeopathic practitioner Wendy Howard