News & Information

News & Information

Last week, when we were told Senator John McCain (R-AZ) was being treated for a blood clot above his left eye, we suspected a tumor could have been involved, as he was a cancer survivor and tumors are thrombogenic, meaning clot forming. Unfortunately, the 80 year old melanoma cancer survivor has been diagnosed with primary glioblastoma. However, it's been reported that the whole tumor was removed when the doctors performed a craniotomy (opening of the skull) to remove the blood clot. A statement from his office reports Senator McCain is home and recovering “amazingly well.” What is Primary Glioblastoma? Primary Glioblastoma Multiforme is a type of brain tumor that arises in the brain and spinal cord and is very aggressive in nature. “Primary” suggests the tumor is not secondary to another cancer, such as the melanoma Senator McCain successfully battled. In 1993, 2000 and 2002, McCain had three malignant melanoma lesions removed, and the 2000 lesion was close to his left temple. Those diagnosed with a glioblastoma may have a poorer prognosis compared to other cancers as the 5-year survival rate is only 10%. Its median survival is less than 15 months. However, with his lesion removed, and chemotherapy and radiation set to begin once his incision has healed, many medical teams are optimistic. According to his daughter, Meghan McCain, her father is “confident” and “calm”. CNN reports that when the Senator awoke from surgery he was “cracking jokes” and ready to go home and get to work. This is…
I don’t know about you, but I have always loved to read and study Louisiana History. I’ve had the pleasure of teaching the history of the Bayou State at both Tulane University and LSU. And when it comes to examining the giant political figures that had a direct bearing on the stature and even the survival of Louisiana as an American state, two individuals stand head and shoulders above all others. They each are former presidents. And without their vision and dramatic leadership, Louisiana might well not be an American state today. No one else could fill this role more than Thomas Jefferson and Andrew Jackson. Jefferson was the nation’s third president, and could well be the brightest intellect that ever graced our country's political scene. He was the author of America’s founding document, the Declaration of Independence, and he became the voice for the hopes and aspirations of a new America. Jefferson founded the University of Virginia, and he designed and built Monticello, one of the most stunning antebellum homes in the country. And he was the driving force in negotiating the Louisiana Purchase from Napoleon in 1803. Simply put, without Jefferson’s vision and tenacity in seeking the vast territory west of the Mississippi River, Louisiana would not be a state today. Andrew Jackson was our country's seventh president, and was the only president to have been a prisoner of war, having been captured by the British at 17 while serving in the Revolutionary War. He later was Nicknamed…
Our newsfeeds are bombarded with so many stories about excessive use of force within the police department that it’s almost shocking to read something about cops that is the exact opposite. Now, I know that the vast majority of good deeds cops do go unreported because they are not sensational stories. The headline, “Cop does something nice” does not sell much of anything. And so there is a silent majority of cops that do their jobs and get little to no fanfare. And much has been written about the more and more common tragedy of a law enforcement officer shooting an unarmed civilian. But that’s not what I’m here to do today. Today I went and found a “cops do something nice” story. And I’m going to tell you all about it. Meet: Heroes, Cops and Kids. A community organization comprised of Dallas Police officers, teachers and other community leaders created to be positive role models for the community and its kids. From their website, “We strive to promote good behavior, good decision making and to teach coping mechanisms for peer pressure.” Well, that sounds delightful. BUT -- the cynical side of my brain immediately thought, “I bet it’s kind of racist. I bet it’s a bunch of white cops that go into poor black neighborhoods and tell the kids to stay off crack.” Right? Hrrmmm. Not exactly. In a moment where I must remind myself that my paranoid lefty-liberal brain is not always correct. (I try not to say…
Now that Republicans’ plans to repeal and replace Obamacare are all but dead, GOP Congress-men and -women will be working to preserve their jobs by accomplishing something -- anything. Now it seems the Republican budget proposals will get in the way of their next big project -- tax reform. But there is a lifeboat out there for Republicans, if they’re willing to accept a hand from a Democrat. Progressive Consumption Tax Senator Ben Cardin (D-Md.) reintroduced S. 3529, otherwise known as the Progressive Consumption Tax Act (PCTA), back in December. And while the bill wouldn’t do what many Republicans would like and get rid of the Internal Revenue Service, it would re-purpose and shrink the IRS and make tax collection a lot easier. It would also make it so most people would no longer owe individual income taxes, and it would reduce the corporate income tax rate to one of the lowest among industrialized nations. “How?” you ask. Well, revenue once created by income taxes would be replaced by revenue created through a consumption tax, which is a tax on goods and services consumed rather than a tax on income. It’s a lot like a sales tax, except Cardin has proposed what’s called a value added tax. Value Added Tax (VAP) A value added tax is collected from each producer involved in the production chain of a product rather than the end consumer. So if a manufacturer buys $40-worth of product from other manufacturers earlier in the production chain, puts…
Now that we know Donald Trump's budget would increase the deficit and do little to improve the economy according to the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office, you can expect fixed costs like energy and transportation to cut into the average American’s income even more so than in the past. In fact, the Trump administration made a $3.7 trillion mistake in its budget, which is far larger than the $776 billion and and $303 billion mistakes the Obama administration made with its budgets. Energy cuts focus on energy-efficiency research While the bulk of Trump’s proposed cuts in energy are research programs at the Energy Department ($3.1 billion, an 18 percent cut in budget) seeking ways to decrease carbon emissions from coal-burning power plants and more efficient batteries for electric cars, programs that actually help Americans save money on energy will also be eliminated. The Energy Star program, with which you’re likely familiar, costs about $50 million annually, but will be cut from the Environmental Protection Agency’s budget despite the EPA estimating that the program helped American consumers and businesses save $34 billion in energy costs and prevent more than 300 million metric tons of greenhouse gas emissions. That little blue label won’t be there to tell you whether the appliance you’re looking to buy meets the EPA’s standards because those standards no longer exist. The same goes for the Weatherization Assistance Program (WAP), which funds energy audits of homes inhabited by low-income Americans and the installation of energy efficient additions like attic…
While monsoon season brings shifts in temperatures, it also brings heavy winds and thunderstorms. Yet for an asthmatic this can be exceptionally dangerous. “Thunderstorm Asthma” is a term used when a very windy storm can induce an asthmatic attack. Last year, nine people died in Melbourne, Australia after a thunderstorm precipitated respiratory difficulties. The storm, it’s believed, caused pollen particles to swell and rupture into much smaller particles, which were dispersed by wind. The theory is that the immediate propulsion of much smaller (and more numerous) particles into one’s lungs was the recipe for asthma disaster. We first learned of “thunderstorm asthma” in the 1980’s when epidemics occurred in parts of Europe, Australia and Iran. Environmental conditions change and asthma allergens meet the unsuspecting lungs. Asthma is a respiratory condition in which inflammation causes the airways to narrow, restricting air flow and causing wheezing, shortness of breath and cough. This bronchoconstriction can be deadly if the patient doesn’t receive enough oxygen. Bronchodilators, such as albuterol are used to dilate the airways and steroids are commonly given to decrease the inflammation. If someone has baseline asthma, a storm forecast should warrant preparatory measures, including ensuring one has plenty of inhalers, and seeing their provider to determine if they are vulnerable to “tipping over”. Many feel a false sense of security with rain as they believe it will wash away the dust. As Melbourne witnessed, a thunderstorm can be just as deadly. A variety of factors can cause asthma attacks including: Pollen…
Meeting your weight loss goals doesn’t have to be expensive or snack-free. Snacking can actually be good for you as long as it’s done in moderation. Snacking will actually make you eat less during meals, and spreading your calories throughout the day rather than eating three traditional meals will increase your metabolism and allow you to burn more calories and fat while at rest. I eat over 1,000 calories in snacks per day and have lost 12 pounds in two months and fit into my high school jeans. You can keep snacking, too, as long as you know which snacks are best for you and which to avoid. Obviously, eating Hostess Twinkies every day isn’t going to be good for you. The 260 calories in two Twinkie cakes is more than even M&Ms, as is the 43 grams of carbohydrates packed into those golden cakes. The high-calorie snacks not named Twinkies are Oreos, Chips Ahoy!, Lay’s Potato Chips (pick your flavored poison), Cheetos, Fritos Corn Chips (Chili Cheese and Original), and my personal favorite, Fritos Honey BBQ Flavor Twists. All come in packing 160 calories per serving, and all come with between nine and 10 grams of fat. I understand you probably love a snack on this list, and I feel for you, but it doesn’t mean you can’t still enjoy that snack. Just do so in moderation. You don’t have to sacrifice taste for nutrition, and you don’t have to pay more for healthier snacks, either. While Smartfood Delight…
The views and opinions expressed below are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the position of the GCN Live newsroom. A guest editorial follows. “Our boys were sent off to die with beautiful ideals painted in front of them. No one told them that dollars and cents were the real reason they were marching off to kill and die.” General Smedley Butler Did you ever notice that the politicians that talk much of war are those who have never been to war. Or have you noticed that those who are to serve “We the People” in Congress are so apt to send your men and women to fight unconstitutional wars, but for some reason or another it does not apply to their own (Matthew 23:3). As a matter of fact, it has been said that the Vietnam War ended when the children of those who represented us were pulled up for the draft. Furthermore, to add insult to injury, it seems that trees take precedent over human life. When you go to Washington D.C., you see trees with fences around them that state “Tree protection: KEEP OUT! Do Not Enter. The enclosed area is a tree root protection zone. Fence must remain closed at all times.” They are simply protecting trees from the people (Romans 1:28). What you do not see is the Vietnam Wall (my cousin was killed in Vietnam) 20 yards behind this sign. Fifty-eight thousand, three hundred and eighteen were killed (Amos 4:10). With…
My pal Larry went to Detroit on business and ran into Oneita Jackson at a restaurant there and brought the word back that I needed to have her on my show, because Oneita Jackson IS Detroit. When I read that Oneita "cracks herself up," I knew she was my kinda girl. People on six continents know who she is. She's a trip. Once known for providing the most authentic trips around Detroit, Oneita is the former editor of The Detroit Free Press and The O Street Blog, and the author of two books -- one about bad customer service and the other about assumptions people make about race. Oneita realized one day that she wanted to meet more people, so she decided to drive a cab in Detroit and provide tours of the city to help people "feel" the city. That's how Mercedes Benz heard about her and hired her to wheel around Detroit, Oneita style. "Meeting strangers, making friends and selling books on the run" is one quote from this awesome piece on Oneita written by Heike Kaufhold for She's Mercedes. Anyone visiting Detroit needs to look up Oneita Jackson. She's stopped driving a cab so tune in to the top of this weekend's show to find out where you can find her now. She's also @OneitaJackson on Twitter. Imagine a whole crowd of people wanting to give you money? Where do you sign up for that? With Kerry Walters, crowdfunding specialist and social media expert. Her business is …
It’s hard to take a day off when your job consists of writing about exactly what you want to write about whenever that inspiration strikes. I’m usually inspired to write something daily, but sometimes a vacation can go a long way in refreshing your thoughts and disconnecting your brain from all things work. That’s why I went vinyl record shopping on Sunday. Vinyl’s comeback is no secret. I’m 31, and while my parents had a record player and used it often when I was a kid, I didn’t get into records until more recently when I started listening to them with friends. It became a kind of ritual. After our days listening to radio at work, whether traditional or online, and mp3s from our phones during our commute, we needed some art we could touch -- something tangible. The quality of a vinyl recording is far superior to that of an mp3 or CD, too. I don’t care what anyone says. You can’t have better quality if you don’t capture everything in the first place. A digital recording does not capture the complete sound wave, while an analog recording does. That’s why Robert Plant’s voice sounds so much better on vinyl, because nothing is lost. What I love most about the vinyl comeback, though, is the act of purchasing music. I went out looking for a few specific things on Sunday. After hearing The Blues Brothers’ “Briefcase Full of Blues,” I wanted to focus on buying records that featured horns,…
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