margonaut blog archive (2004-2014)


complimentary medicine

I just found a great reference site on "alternative" medicine put out by medical doctors, including information on specific herbs and supplements.

If you have an ailment you're wondering about how to treat, look it up on the conditions page.

It's good to see members of the medical establishment opening their minds to, studying, and promoting a more holistic approach to health!

University of Maryland Medical Center Complimentary Medicine Program
A core component of CMP's mission is to evaluate the contribution of complementary therapies to patient care and healing in an out-patient, integrated medical clinic. Our highly qualified staff of practitioners and medical doctors are dedicated to providing an optimal therapeutic environment. We specialize in whole-person, individualized care and offer an expanded range of conventional and CAM options.

Filed under: diet & health No Comments

the joy of learning there is so much more to learn

after a long education
both in classrooms and
the World I am somehow
a kindergardener again

Filed under: poetry No Comments

let’s face up to our biological reality

Some members of the Catholic Church are speaking up about the Vatican's refusal to condone the use of birth control, especially condoms.

Spain's bishops reject stand on condoms
Church spokesman condoned their use to prevent AIDS
Martinez's words, published in Italian newspapers Wednesday, created a stir in the Vatican. Bishop Jose Luis Redrado Machite, secretary of the Pontifical Council for Pastoral Assistance to Health Care Workers, asserted that use of condoms was "contrary to Catholic morality."

One Vatican official conjectured that the Spanish bishops conference may have been following the influence of Jesuit leaders in appearing to accept condom use. Jesuit clerics in Africa, where the spread of AIDS is among the most severe in the world, have openly pressed for the condom ban to be lifted.

Catholic Church and Birth Control
Catholics merrily maintain this differentiation between "being Catholic" and "doing what the Pope says to do", while donating millions of dollars to fund the Pope's agenda. Even more disturbing, only 17.3% of the world is Catholic - but their doctrines on issues such as birth control and abortion affect every single woman. There have been countless studies that tie birth control and abortion rights to better living conditions (and survival rates!) for females and for entire families. I.e. proper family planning ensures that the family has good living conditions - while having too many kids can cause death for the mother and squalor for the family members.

The full responsibility here lies with Catholic Church members. It's not like NON Catholics can get the Catholic church to change. 96% of Catholic women have used birth control - yet they give money and support to an institution which is the SOLE voice against birth control. It is their responsibility to force the Catholic church to change - or to withhold that income so that the church does not have the power. Otherwise they are directly responsible for the casualties caused across the entire world, because of their "paid representatives" in the clergy. Nobody else can possibly cause that change to occur.


nice smart people succeed

My favorite business book is Tim Sanders' Love is the Killer App: How to Win Business and Influence Friends. It explains how being nice, honest, and generous will do more for your career than any amount of traditional salesman-style manipulation.

His website and newsletter are also worth checking out.

Here's the back of the book blurb:

Are you wondering what the next killer app will be? Do you want to know how you can maintain and add to your value during these rapidly changing times? Are you wondering how the word love can even be used in the context of business?

Instead of wondering, read this book and find out how to become a lovecatˆ…a nice, smart person who succeeds in business and in life.

How do you become a lovecat? By sharing your intangibles. By that I mean:
Your knowledge: everything that comes from all the books that Iˆ¢ll encourage you to devour.
Your network: the collection of friends and contacts you now have, which Iˆ¢ll teach you how to grow and nurture.
Your compassion: that human warmth you already possessˆ…in these pages Iˆ¢ll convince you that you can show it freely at the office.

What happens when you do all this?
* You become a rich source of information to all around you.
* You are seen as a person with valuable insight.
* You are perceived as generous to a fault, producing surprise and delight.
* You double your business intelligence in one year.
* You triple your network of personal relationships in two years.
* You quadruple the number of colleagues in your life who love you like family.

In short, you become one of those amazing, outstanding people to whom everyone turns, who leads rather than follows, who never runs out of ideas, contacts, or friendship.

Hereˆ¢s the real scoop: Nice guys donˆ¢t finish last. They rule!


not quite a GPS

Out of curiosity, I'm going to take a look in the forest behind my place and see if there are any similar patterns around here. The rain might be an issue though...

Feeling lost? Rocks can point the way
Night has fallen, and you are lost in the middle of an unfamiliar desert. There are ways to find your bearings by looking up at the stars. But how about looking down at the rocks?

According to Leslie McFadden of the University of New Mexico, there may be a kind of compass in the alignment of cracks in certain rocks.

Filed under: science No Comments

country virus

It's almost scary. I've always had diverse musical tastes, but I'm getting obsessed with Country music. This is very strange as I generally listen to electronica.

Who says I can't like Psytrance and Country at the same time? Ok, maybe only seperately :)

Most Country sucks though. I don't like that pop Nashville sound or cheezball music that's more marketing than inspiration.

Right now I have a song from the Loretta Lynn album Jack White produced (Van Lear Rose) stuck in my head. There's something about that old timey upright bass sound, plus I love the words...

high on a mountaintop
we live, we love, and we laugh a lot
folks up here know what they got
high on a mountaintop
high on a mountaintop
where the rest of the world's
like a little bitty spot
I ain't comin down no never I'm not
high on a mountaintop
high on a mountaintop

Filed under: music 1 Comment

scientists & lobbyists

This is another one of those jobs I can't imagine doing. How do they sleep at night?

Kudos to this scientist for speaking up!

Americans are trying to discredit me, claims Chief Scientist
"You have a group of lobbyists, some of whom are chasing me around the planet, which I'm chuffed about because it means they are worrying about what I'm saying, and these lobbyists stand up after I've given an hour's talk and say, 'There are scientists who disagree with you'," Sir David said.

"I always say, 'Which bit of the science that I've just presented to you are you challenging'? I don't get the answer."

Filed under: science No Comments

bricks and mortar

sometimes when
the inner mind
doth protest a
little bit too

much on slippy
subjects close
inspection can
reveal ancient

walls designed
to hide primal
natural truths
from your view

Filed under: poetry No Comments

how they pick what gets in the news

Here's an interesting entry from a public relations blog about how to make a story more likely to get on the news:

Newsworthiness: The Psychology of News
Believe it or not, part of what makes a news story "newsworthy" is it's ability to entertain. After all, when it comes right down to the essence - ratings are what drive the media business, not the desire to communicate the news.

So one of the key learnings for most PR people, who probably don't represent organizations who consistently produce information that's newsworthy on its own, is to consciously step back and consider how to make a story more newsworthy. One key way to do that is through adding an element of entertainment value, or said another way, to add some element that will cause the media outlet's ratings to increase as a result of airing your particular story.

For example, consider many of the socialites like Paris Hilton, heiress of the Hilton Hotel fortune. She has steadily made herself famous, not for having done anything worthwhile, but because she keeps doing things that attract media attention.

She does things like dating Leonardo DiCaprio, showing up on every worthwhile red carpet in the world, and having regular vicious fights with high-profile people in public places.

Filed under: news & media No Comments

why America votes “Conservative”

Do you find it baffling that people who aren't billionaires actually support the Bush administration?

Here are two clues that may help explain it...

The Conservative Marketing Machine
While the leaders of the conservative movement like to boast that the power of their movement lies in the power of its ideas, the ideas of today's conservative movement are the same old failed policies from years gone by, spit-shined and with user-friendly names. The power of the conservative movement is not in its ideas, rather it is in the marketing of these ideas, primarily through effective packaging, promotion and distribution.

The S Factor Explains Bush's Popularity
It's the "Stupid factor," the S factor: Some people -- sometimes through no fault of their own -- are just not very bright.

It's not merely that some people are insufficiently intelligent to grasp the nuances of foreign policy, of constitutional law, of macroeconomics or of the variegated interplay of humans and the environment. These aren't the people I'm referring to. The people I'm referring to cannot understand the phenomenon of cause and effect. They're perplexed by issues comprising more than two sides. They don't have the wherewithal to expand the sources of their information. And above all -- far above all -- they don't think.

You know these people; they're all around you (they're not you, else you would not be reading this article this far). They're the ones who keep the puerile shows on TV, who appear as regular recipients of the Darwin Awards, who raise our insurance rates by doing dumb things, who generally make life much more miserable for all of us than it ought to be. Sad to say, they comprise a substantial minority -- perhaps even a majority -- of the populace.

Filed under: politics No Comments