Addressing a trend

I’ve been getting more than my fair share of comment spam recently (not quite enough that I’m ready to use one of those “prove you’re human” things). Lately, one of the topics is HCG diets.

Let me make one thing perfectly crystal clear about HCG: it is the only diet drug required by the FDA to have a black box warning saying it does not work! Really, that’s the only thing you need to know about HCG. Just say no. It’s a waste of your money and potentially dangerous.

As for the new “safer” homeopathic HCG drops, they’re still sugar water. Further, even if homeopathy did work, the “Law of Similars” — “a substance that when taken in crude form causes a set of symptoms or disease in a healthy person can cure similar symptoms occurring during an illness when treated with small, often infinitesimal, potentised doses of the same substance” — would suggest that diluting a weight loss “drug” for homeopathic use would make the user gain weight, wouldn’t it?

It is at this point that I will point out that I’m not a doctor, nor a dietician. I’m only pointing out two things: HCG is FDA proven to not work for weight loss, and mixing it with a bunch of water isn’t likely to make it more effective.

While we are on the topic, here’s some tips for not letting the holidays ruin your diet.

In Closing: tricorder; oops; The Jungle returns; doing good work; what??; free markets won’t fix health care; which reality will win, not enough money to retire or not enough health to keep working?; couples and money; the near poor; I’ve always thought it would be a great idea to have a “third party debate,” and apparently there was; and who needs MacGyver when Dolph Lundgren really exists??

Music Monday: Musicology and Modern Popular Music

Free term theme idea: Recurring Thematic Material in the Collected Works of Flo Rida.

If one were to listen to his entire discography, how many songs would seem to reference oral sex?

Regrettably, there doesn’t seem to be an official music video I could embed.

In Closing: a bounty I hope gets paid; waaah, the media isn’t telling why it might be a good idea to shoot 14 year old girls in the head for wanting an education (damn liberal media!); maps; quiet victory; this could be a bumpy election; confession; she’d be a Saint even without the Pope’s say-so; who needs effective antibiotics anyway?; science literacy; duh; and just say no.

Beneath the Shorties

LOL: Enjoy this meme while you can, I figure it’s dead in 3 weeks.

They just keep coming: Remember, the plot to kill Big Bird is still in play. There’s a Million Muppet March planned.

Twelve! Meeeeelion! Jobs!!!: Yeah, so?

Get it off me! Get it get it get it….: Is it just me, or does Mr. Romney look uncomfortable in this picture? You don’t suppose it could be that he’s being touched by a black man, do you?

Beating the dead dressage horse: What Romney’s tax “plan” could do to housing.

If you like it then you shoulda put a ring on it: Scientists found a planet twice the size of Earth, largely made of diamond. Good thing it’s far enough away that DeBeers can’t get hold of it!

Like you needed an economist to tell you that: Your paycheck is being outstripped by inflation. So if low interest rates are supposedly the cure for inflation, what the heck is the Fed going to do now??

But apparently some people do need an economist to tell you this: Here’s why cutting taxes never has and never will create jobs.

Gee, maybe saying “no” wasn’t such a good strategy: Failing to pass a Big Agriculture Giveaway  Farm Bill before leaving Washington gave some Democrats an upper hand.

Judges judge things: An Appeals Court has ruled part of the Defense of Marriage Act unconstitutional.

Unexpected Excitement: Passengers on a Canadian airliner helped save a boater’s life. That beats most in-flight movies.

Wheat Ain’t What It Was: On modern wheat.

Not sure how to get out of this mess: Two out of three new college grads has college loan debt, and the average amount is $26,600. The scary part is that many of them won’t be getting jobs anytime soon. Just a reminder, it would take 3668 hours at minimum wage to pay that off. That’s 152 days of nonstop 24/7 labor. And it won’t be wiped out by bankruptcy.

Newsweek: will stop printing a paper edition.

But what about the economy?: Here’s an outline of the risks.

“The other 1%”: 2/3 of the bottom 1% of Americans are in prison.

Turns out it won’t turn good girls into sluts: Girls who get the HPV vaccine are not more likely to have sex.

Carbs: “People 70 and older who eat food high in carbohydrates have nearly four times the risk of developing mild cognitive impairment, and the danger also rises with a diet heavy in sugar, Mayo Clinic researchers have found. Those who consume a lot of protein and fat relative to carbohydrates are less likely to become cognitively impaired, the study found.”

And it turns out that Doing Good might Make More Money: At least that’s Coca-Cola’s theory.

Oh sure, I totally know him.

I’m blaming Busted Knuckles for invoking his name in comments:

In Closing: effing candyman; maybe a clue why is in the previous post’s comments?; follow up; more follow up (attackers knew irony?); Military wants to save you $3,000,000,000 but Congress won’t let them; sorry Wendy, when you serve burgers in paper wrappers on plastic trays, you are not “higher end”; can you help JP out?; and find the problem in this picture. The sad thing is I don’t know how many times I’ve driven past this sign without noticing.

Old Time Religion

Today, a bunch of men in another part of the world were so threatened by the very idea that a woman might learn something that they shot a 14 year old girl as she rode home from school in a bus. What a bunch of big, manly men that they had to go shoot a teenager for daring to engage in radical activities like reading a freaking book. They tried to assassinate her for “want[ing] an access to the world of knowledge.” Oh no, she was a liberal and an infidel. The shooters wanted to make sure they had the right girl. After all, it served their purposes to leave the rest of them scared to go back to school; let them grow up to be ignorant and easily subjugated wives.

Damn right there’s “outcry” and “revulsion.”

Don’t pretend that this is about religion. This is about a bunch of scared little baby-men who fear that if women know about the world, they will demand the rights accorded to human beings and will stop allowing themselves to be treated like property.

Feminism at its most basic — at the level that anyone who isn’t a caveman, a member of Taliban, or perhaps a modern Republican should agree with — says that women have the same unalienable rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness that men do. On this basis and this basis alone, I am a feminist. However, modern feminism has too much baggage. My partner will read this and argue that I’m not a feminist at all, but rather I believe in equal rights. I don’t think I’m any better than men. I don’t hate men. I don’t hate other women that disagree with me. I believe that a lot of my life is none of your business. I believe that the “patriarchy” is actually an over-hyped and under-effective tool of the oligarchy.

These ass-hats who think guns can enforce their opinion on morality should take their old time religion with them straight to whatever passes for hell.

In Closing: fragile infrastructure has real costs; cool boat; hedge fund pirates; fine print; yoga; Natalie reminds us that “not tested on animals” is a fraud; heh; explanation of the Washington bubble; on unemployment and payrolls; and I see his point.

What did I tell you?

Back in July, I talked about turkey sandwiches being dressed up in Thanksgiving condiments. I figured the trend would percolate around the high end dining scene for a while before hitting casual dining. Well, I was a little off. It is returning to the carry out restaurant world from which it came first.

Einstein Bros is now offering a seasonal menu that includes a “roasted turkey breast sandwich… spiced with cranberry ginger chutney and offered on an artisan wheat bread.” Sure, it’s seasonal. But I bet if they sell well they could jump to the regular menu. Regrettably, it’s hard to get nutrition info on the seasonal items.

So, where do we see the “Thanksgiving sandwich” pop up next? A quick web search suggests that it’s the item to have on seasonal menus everywhere. I miss La Madeleine more now.

In Closing: this is what parental consent laws do; I see what you did there; killing Big Bird will cut 0.01% from the national budget; not only dumbed down, but deliberately made unreadably dull; stamps; debunking; let them be responsible but remember that we’re checking up on your oversight; and a new mom.