Quimby’s Bookstore

Quimby’s Bookstore has Marie Kube’s books and zines!

Dearest Readers,

Quimby’s Bookstore has our books and zines for sale now! Quimby’s Bookstore sells the most progressive, forward-thinking publications. Please stop by Quimby’s and ask for Marie Kube’s books. Our goal is to offer our books for sale at bookstores for the same price or much less than on amazon.com online. This is because I have a special understanding of the need for independent bookstores since my grandfather owned a bookstore in Berlin, Germany that was destroyed in World War II.

Please visit Quimby’s Bookstore at:
1854 West North Avenue
Chicago, IL 60622
(773)342-0910
http://www.quimbys.com

“Unusual publications, aberrant periodicals, saucy comic books, assorted fancies…plus tons o’ zines”

And if you are in the Detroit, Michigan metro area, then you can also find our books for sale at the Book Beat in Oak Park, Michigan (click here for more information).

Thank you for your support!

Love,
Marie

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Ever wonder how real estate developers got so rich?

When I met my ex-husband, Michael, in Indiana, we both had a house.  Mine was half burned down, poorly patched up, and cleverly covered up, it turned out.  It took four PhDs, including a rocket scientist, plus a dentist and his old, left-over steel I-beam to fix that one.  It was like a crash course in home inspections and home ownership and homeowner’s insurance.  I find that men who are handy and do real work are hot, and I love to work with them.

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Why not just rent?  Because I had pet dogs until recently.  In retrospect, I am a long-term sufferer of PTSD even if I wasn’t diagnosed until it got so bad that I finally had a nervous breakdown.  Now there are lots of service dogs that are recognized as such.  In the past, it was much harder for me to keep dogs.  Nevertheless, I loved them all dearly and they helped me as I helped them. 

Over the more than 20 years we shared, Michael and I owned and worked on five houses together.  We also shared five different apartments in five different cities in two different countries.  I had to borrow the down payment from my father for the last house we bought in St. Paul when I moved there from Rochester.  I’m so grateful that I could pay him back before he died.  Michael was still working in Rochester and living in the house we had bought there.  Eventually, he found a job in the twin cities and we sold the house in Rochester at a significant loss. 

I will never forget the first day of my new job in the twin cities.  My new boss asked me where I was living.  When I told him where I had bought my house, he said I should not have done that because I may not be able to do the job to his specifications, in which case I would be fired.  In fact, he seemed quite sure that I would not measure up as there were several examples of others who hadn’t.  He thought I might lose the house if the job didn’t work out.  I told him that surely that job was not the only job in the whole twin cities area!

As my gift of writing became apparent, things only got worse for me.  Perhaps it was jealousy that attacked me.  It’s not that the greed and exploitation weren’t sufficient, but that jealousy seems a more accurate description as it is a form of hate.  I worked until I was hospitalized for the second time before I managed to quit. 

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We bought the house after the old, sick guy died there after his wife died there before him.  The old man could not take care of his yard as evidenced by the overgrown trees, bushes, and weeds we spent years rehabilitating.  Indeed, the house was barely visible from the road it was so covered up with overgrown bushes full of mold and bird shit that were planted way too close to the foundation of the house.  Then there was the rotten awning and an enormous, rotting Russian olive tree threatening the whole structure.  That the old man had not make it downstairs for some time was obvious by the rodent infestation and dog stains.  Apparently, he wasn’t good about letting the dog out the back door anymore either.  The packets of artificial sweetener I found stuck behind the built-in revolving spice rack really solidified the realization that PhD-level scientists were now living in houses ruined by blue collar workers who assembled motor vehicles at the Ford plant beginning in 1925. 

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They kept a shed adjacent to the house full of feed for geese.  It was a dream come true for rodents even long after the feeding of the geese finally ceased.   Still, we had already looked at 21 houses, and this was the best one by far.  We had to bid against two other couples for the right to buy the place at the peak of the housing market, but like I mentioned, we had already visited 21 houses that weren’t even worth working on. 

It truly is remarkable how many messages we leave behind, even unwittingly, for the astute observer. 

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Another legacy of the Boomers is to sell condemned properties to anyone who can afford to tear down the old houses and build huge new houses covering the whole lot that are supposedly worth more money.  Sadly, to increase profits, some builders build new houses on rotten old foundations.  This means that the “new” house is already infested with the rot from the old house, including infectious agents like molds and bacteria that grow and spread all the time.  Nobody should have to live in such unhealthy conditions, especially not children.

Michael and I spent more than 10 years and tens of thousands of dollars renovating our property inside and out into a much healthier sanctuary.  We got used to the trains hauling the newly assembled Ford Rangers out of the neighboring plant via the railroad spur behind our backyard.  We endured severe and relentless increases in property taxes and huge levies for the school systems for things like one-time purchases of iPads for every student that year only. 

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When the Ford plant finally ceased its operations in 2011, enormous industrial buildings were torn down and jack-hammering of concrete foundations and pads and parking lots pounded my head and triggered my PTSD all day long for years towards that inevitable nervous breakdown I suffered around the end of 2015 and the beginning of 2016.  Cleanup of the toxic waste that caused this Superfund site is still going on, yet has only scratched the surface. 

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After all, Ford has been contaminating this site and the Mississippi River with toxic waste (like car paint) for 86 years!  They even housed a dump site, a landfill, next to the Mississippi River and stretching from Hidden Falls to the dam.  This is all not so far from the mouth of the mighty river, especially from the perspective of someone in Arkansas, for example. 

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As many as 1800 auto workers were employed by the Ford Motor Co. manufacturing plant sitting on the bluff alongside the Mississippi River.

No one should have to live there.  What are the risks, especially for children and those who want to have children?  Cancers and tumors?  Autoimmune diseases like MS?  Deformities?  Executive function disorders?  Learning disabilities?  Thyroid disorders?

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They are still hauling out toxic dirt by the truckload from the site.  Plus, there are buried drums of toxic waste.  How can they not be rusting out and leaching into the river by now?  Wasn’t that the plan all along – to get rich by exploiting natural resources, making a toxic mess, taking all the profits, and leaving the mess for others to bear the consequences of?

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The problem is that these sorts of business practices have inevitably led to the principle of mutually-assured destruction, or MAD, or the Apocalypse.

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Instead of finally cleaning up the mess and the precious river as best as it can be, the plan is to levy additional property taxes on current residents to provide $275 million in corporate subsidies to private developers to build 10-story high-rise buildings along the Mississippi River. 

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The existing infrastructure cannot even support the current traffic load, let alone up to 10,000 new people on less than 135 acres, not even 0.2 square miles!  Ridiculous! 

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The footings of the bridge over the river and into the neighborhood are getting washed out!

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The city just wants to increase its property tax base without providing the necessary infrastructure! 

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Ford is going to put a restriction on the sale of the land so it can’t be single-family homes, according to City Council member Chris Tolbert.  Why?  So people can’t dig there?

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Nine percent green space is the maximum the city can require, also according to Tolbert.

I declare, by eminent domain, a transfer of this land from poor stewards to good stewards.  The river and the land should be cleaned up by the responsible parties. 

The righteous shall inherit the land, and dwell therein for ever (Psalms 37:29). 

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Eugenics Therapy

How to Get Away with Murder Ivy League Style

Woe to the inhabiters of the earth and of the sea! for the devil is come down unto you, having great wrath, because he knoweth that he hath but a short time (Revelation 12:12).

There was no preventing the death by gene therapy of 18-year-old Jesse Gelsinger.  I tried.  Free will was exercised.  I am not the judge, and neither is any other person.  The Lord is the one and only Judge.

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Scientists wish to genetically engineer people and plants.  In people, this means replacing or compensating for a defective gene by introducing a functional version of the defective gene into the body to treat, if not cure, the disease.  Usually the correct DNA is introduced into the body via a genetically-engineered virus.

Gene therapy was first attempted in 1990 to treat a genetic disorder called adenosine deaminase severe combined immunodeficiency (ADA-SCID), or boy in the plastic bubble disease, which results in vulnerability to infectious diseases so extreme that the patient may be forced to live in a sterile environment.  The first gene therapy patient only experienced a temporary benefit.  Several patients in France developed leukemia after receiving gene therapy for an immune deficiency during the late 1990s and early 2000s.  Leukemia was easier to treat in young children than SCID, they said, if they survived.

In September of 1999, 18-year-old Jesse Gelsinger ended up sacrificing his life in effort to advance gene therapy from an experiment to a cure for those to come after him with the same genetic disorder resulting in a liver disease.

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These setbacks could only hold back the field of human gene therapy for so long.  Today, more than 2300 clinical trials using gene therapies are in progress, according to Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology News, July 1, 2017.  On July 12, 2017, it was announced that FDA Panel recommends approval for gene-altering leukemia treatment.

I ended up in the field of human gene therapy during the pursuit of my PhD degree during 1993 to 1997.  Really, I just went to graduate school to find out how something we cannot even see can kill us, like the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV).  To earn a PhD degree in a hard science field, you must discover new knowledge, take courses, teach undergraduate students, publish or perish, and pass demanding comprehensive examinations (written and oral).

During the oral portion of my qualification examinations to determine whether or not I was even qualified to continue pursuing my PhD degree, I was unexpectedly interrogated as a Nazi by all but one of the then-members of my thesis committee.  They questioned whether it was appropriate for them to allow someone like me, genetically German, to be in the field of human gene therapy.  They asked me questions about which genes or characteristics I felt were superior.  It went on to the point where I began crying hysterically during the exam and could not stop crying for days afterwards.  I was crying in the bathtub.  I seriously considered quitting with a Master’s degree.  But my husband said, “I think you should finish it.”  When I asked him why, he replied, “because you started it.”  He was right, and I got out of the tub.  The one member of my PhD thesis committee who was absent during my qualifying exam turned out to be a real scientist and a real friend, and I somehow managed to change who was on my PhD thesis committee.

After I gave my thesis defense (oral presentation in the big auditorium, I was so nervous), the professors who had been the nastiest to me along the way approached the podium with tears in their eyes to tell me it was the best defense they had ever experienced.  As my PhD advisor taught me so well, success is the best revenge.

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Once I earned my Doctor of Philosophy title, I thought I knew a thing or two.  And then I received a lesson in coercion.

Jim came to Indiana University School of Medicine in Indianapolis to give us a lecture.  He came from the Ivy League on the east coast.  I could get in to Harvard University when I graduated high school near the top of my class, but the cost of attending was out of my league.  Too bad, I thought, because only the people who have that pedigree can make it in this construct.  But now, finally, my redemption had maybe arrived, or so I thought.  Jim was one of the most famous gene therapy researchers in the world.

The Ivy League has connotations of academic excellence, selectivity in admissions, and social elitism.  It is a collegiate athletic conference comprising sports teams from eight private institutions of higher education in the Northeastern United States, but the conference name is commonly used to refer to those eight schools as a group beyond the sports context.  Seven of the nine Colonial Colleges chartered before the American Revolution are Ivy League institutions.  The origin of the name lies in the ivy-covered older college buildings long revered by the students.  Indeed, it was customary for students to plant ivy at university buildings each spring in the 1800s.  Wikipedia

Jim’s real motive was to scout out a new slave to bring adeno-associated virus technology to his lab.  I despised his weak character immediately, but he wanted me.  If I agreed to go to his lab, then I could graduate.  If not, then I would have to be a student for at least another year.  Jim wanted my PhD advisor’s vector, and I think my PhD advisor wanted something from Jim’s lab, too (maybe a vector, but I seem to remember shipping him something).  Also, I think my PhD advisor, from India with short, bald, brown man syndrome, wanted in the old boys’ club.  Apparently, I was needed to bridge the relationship between the labs and ensure material transfers, which seems pretty ridiculous if all were simply on the up-and-up.  But this is the pattern of how things are done – not in writing, not provable, no data.  And that’s why when you’re in that situation, you’re fucked.

I went to Jim’s lab with my PhD degree.  There were 20-30 people in his lab, mostly PhDs and MDs.

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It was an “open space” lab concept (one giant open lab with row after row of work benches) to promote collaboration, but it was not a collaborative environment.  Well, what do you expect when 1,000 of you are going to compete for the same job?

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What was the definition of success?  Dr. Ho, for example, published a very high-profile paper on HIV resistance.  Turns out it was a contaminant.  That’s the nature of science, they said.  And it won’t hurt Ho’s reputation at all.

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Peer-review is too political.  It’s hard to be righteous in a system where the self-serving are in power.  Righteousness is feared and gets punished.  The system favors those who make decisions based on politics rather than right versus wrong.

Jim was smart, but only in the sense of memorizing and copying.  He was not at the level of creating new and unique contributions.  Jim played the intimidation game, but I wasn’t afraid of him and that made him nervous.  I think he wanted to fuck me, and that made me nervous.

He asked me where I was living.  When I told him where I had rented an apartment in a huge, old house, he freaked out and said that I could not stay there under any circumstances because it was too dangerous!  He was right about that.  The only twist is that my animal spirit is the puma who travels back and forth between the light and dark places, everywhere, anywhere, at will and by nature.  Fuck his unfunded mandate.  Philadelphia is outrageously expensive, complete with an extra 10% city tax.  My annual salary was about $28,000 before state, federal and city tax.  My husband lived in another state, and we had to pay a lot to visit each other.  At Christmas, Jim invited his laboratory workers to his mansion house for a party.  Others swooned with envy of his wealth and status while I fought back the nausea.

I carried my S&W Tactical .40 cal semi-auto pistol with me everywhere to keep those crack addicts at bay lest those eyes glowing a sickly yellow in the dark shadows decided to jump out at me from behind the bushes.  Maybe it was the confidence I had in my ability to defend myself (I got several guys off at the shooting range, which I took as a good sign), or the bulge of my gun at my side, or the hard look in my eyes, or all of the above that made it clear I would not be an easy victim.  It is surprising how lazy people are, especially criminals.  And so, the puma jumped from perch to perch to take in the views.

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I didn’t believe the data I saw every Monday morning during our 8:00 am lab meetings.  Jim would tell the Chinese Research Associate what he wanted, and the Chinese guy would ALWAYS produce it, without fail.  Clearly this was not science.  The data were too clean, too fast, too perfect, and they always confirmed the predetermined hypothesis.

I spoke up during lab meetings and asked fundamental questions.  The data were not generated by conventional, accepted methodologies or presented in the standard formats, so direct comparison was not possible and the data were not convincing.  There was intense opposition to doing it the standard way.

One of the MDs had been a neuropathologist, pathology specialty.  The “health maintenance organization (HMO),” a medical insurance group, said we don’t need so many doctors and cut his job out.  What an oxymoron HMO is.  The MD had a wife and kids and needed a job, so he, too, worked for Jim.  The MD did gene therapy experiments on monkeys.  He was deeply disturbed about the monkeys’ hematocrits.  I know this because the MD’s lab bench was adjacent to my own and he was suffering right along with those monkeys he was using.  The monkeys were sick, and I got the feeling some were even dead or dying.

A conflict of interest is a situation in which a person or organization is involved in multiple interests, financial or otherwise, one of which could possibly corrupt the motivation or decision-making of that individual or organization (Wikipedia).  Jim started Genovo, a for-profit biotechnology company funding the clinical trial.  Both the university and Jim had financial interests in Genovo.  Jim also chaired the department of molecular and cellular engineering at the university.  In his university lab, research was being done for Genovo, which paid the university for their services.  Jim’s lab received $2.8 million a year from Genovo.  The ties between Jim’s lab, the university, and Genovo were so entangled that the university created a conflict-of-interest committee to oversee the Genovo relationship.  A fox in charge of the hen house, clearly.  If the gene therapy trial would have worked, it would have meant company money and university money, patents, and maybe even the Nobel prize.  Ambition and drive to make a breakthrough are also sources of conflicts of interest.

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Science is set up to encourage over-specifying.  There is always a desperation to publish or you will surely perish.  And in this context, science works you to death, robs you of friends and family, and still it’s never enough.  You don’t have time to think.  You’re pointing the finger, and they are wielding clubs.  It is a real-life David and Goliath situation.

“Do you think my lab is bamboozling me?” Jim asked me during a meeting between the two of us in his office during which I confronted him.

“Yes!” I replied, emphatically.

But he wouldn’t slow down.  Egomaniac.  Sociopath?  God complex.

The rationalization to go too fast is that we learn the most the fastest by making mistakes.  And yes, some people will die, but it’s for a good cause and, indeed, that’s the necessary sacrifice to potentially benefit others.  A fundamental, philosophical issue is the risk-to-benefit ratio.  Assessment of the risk-to-benefit ratio is very subjective.  The benefits also include huge profits for certain stakeholders, and I have no doubt that assessments of risk versus benefit would be different if considerable financial incentives were taken out of the equation.  Unfortunately, you probably also must think about removing fame and glory to avoid recklessness behavior of unchecked, selfish, immoral and unethical egos.

Risks of human gene therapy include the risk of generating novel recombinant viruses that are virulent and that threaten us all!  It may sound far-fetched, but it has likely already happened.  A novel virus was certainly generated inadvertently during my experiments.

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I discovered wild-type AAV-like virus particles, but my PhD advisor did not believe me.  Nobody ever believes anything I say!  I finally convinced him, though.  And then he took the discovery from me and gave it to a co-worker to sequence the viruses and bury my name in the least important position in the list on the front of the publication.

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Some argue that the origins of HIV are from SIV in monkey cells used to make vaccines for Africans.  Some even argue it was purposeful versus accidental contamination.

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The problem is that everyone is afraid to speak up.  Like during our orientation at the Mayo Clinic, it was made clear that if you make accusations, for sure it will go in your file and then an investigation will be conducted.  Plus, when people are bullshitting and being rewarded for it (e.g., Dr. Ho above), it encourages more of the same.

I was in Jim’s lab for 5 months, from Oct. 1997 to March 1998.  I left because I saw the inevitable train wreck coming and could not be a part of it since I am not a Nazi.  Sure enough, about a year and a half after I left, Jesse died (Sept. 1999).  Everyone told me it was career suicide when I quit Jim’s lab, especially once they heard my ridiculous and crazy reason for leaving.  My husband, the Archangel Michael, was the only one who understood and believed me.  Even the head of the department where I had earned my PhD degree made it clear that I was not welcome to come back there.  He was the same guy who begrudgingly nominated me for the Kinsley Award (only one nominee per department), and then I won!  He wanted to nominate a Korean guy who did research overlapping his own, but that guy’s thesis was too poorly written.

“No one could have predicted such a response as was seen in Jesse,” they said.  Yet, immune responses to viral vectors were being studied in Jim’s lab and results were being published.  Immune responses elicited by viral vectors were destroying infected cells, thereby diminishing expression of the “therapeutic” gene.

I think that Jim gave Jesse too much virus in a desperate measure to achieve therapeutically efficacious levels of recombinant protein OTC (ornithine transcarbamylase) and prove efficacy.  I think Jim figured that Jesse was young and strong and could handle it.  The 18th subject enrolled in the study in 1999, Jesse was dead four days after receiving the experimental treatment.  His immune system reacted fiercely in attacking the adenovirus vector.  Following an adenovirus-induced fever, he suffered jaundice and was comatose by the second evening after receiving treatment.  A cascade of organ failures ensued:  a blood clotting disorder, a catastrophic rise in ammonia levels, kidney failure, lung failure, and ultimately brain death.

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Too much virus means more virus administered than could be justified based on pre-clinical safety studies in monkeys and rodents.  Later, it came out that monkeys died and those deaths were not reported to FDA and were not disclosed to human subjects in the process of gaining their consent.

Informed consent failed as evidenced by the fact that Jesse’s parents did not even accompany him to Philadelphia for the trial.  They thought the risk was lower than it actually was, and didn’t realize that the potential outcome of the experiment could be death.  Of course, the possibility of death was probably mentioned somewhere in the fine print of the consent form, like on forms you sign before horseback riding, rafting, or entering an amusement park.

FDA only knows what they are told!

Protocol violations included: (1) double blood ammonia level than original level and enrolled anyway, (2) four prior patients in the experiment had adverse events, (3) monkeys died and were not reported, and (4) risks were downplayed to the parents.

Robert Erickson, University of Arizona, Tucson, also raised concerns, also to no avail.

“Don’t be driven out of the field,” an ethics professor told me.  Ha!  Leaving Jim’s lab was deemed career suicide.  When I told my PhD advisor I feared that Jim would kill someone, he scorned and said, “if that were going to happen, then it would have happened already.”  He regarded me as crazy and told me he would lock me up in an insane asylum himself if only he could.  This was the same man who had repeatedly told me that he saw it written on the side of a bus in India that “it’s nice to be important, but it’s even more important to be nice.”  Consider small colleges, the ethics professor advised me.

I remain disappointed in Jesse’s father that he took the money in the end (undisclosed settlement amount).  Ironically, Gelsinger became guilty of the same flaw that killed his son.  I think Paul Gelsinger raised a lot of awareness because he is super smart and quite verbally eloquent.  Therefore, I believe he could have raised even more awareness if he had continued the fight versus settling.  But I am not the Judge!

Another very interesting aspect of this case is that there was no perceived benefit to Jesse himself for participating in this trial.  The patients this therapy was ultimately meant to cure were infants born with a more severe form of OTC deficiency, which can result in death within the first days of life, or coma, developmental delay, mental retardation, progressive liver damage, etc.  It was considered unethical to perform the gene therapy trials in infants, so people like Jesse with a less severe form of this rare metabolic disorder were enrolled in the trial.  This is in interesting contrast to proposed pesticide trials.  In the case of pesticides, it was considered unethical to conduct formal trials in humans to determine safe levels of ingestion over time, because there was no benefit to the subjects.  A conundrum, for some.  Instead, most people are unconsented subjects with no monitoring or follow-up.  So, how is it ethical to test gene therapy in subjects like Jesse, but not ethical to test pesticides in willing subjects? It’s not!

I am telling this story now in fulfillment of my duty as an artist to reflect the times because now is the time described in the Book of Revelation.  Now is when it is most important for you to know the truth.  And what is the truth?  God is the truth.

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I have achieved the highest level of education and great success as a scientist against great odds.  At times, I have not had enough to eat.  At other times, I have eaten the fanciest meals in the fanciest castles with the fanciest royalty.  Still, I have found nothing other than the Lord to believe in.

How do we know that this is Armageddon?  The necessities of water, food, shelter, clothing, and footwear have been taken under the control of evil forces.  “Big business and science are run by selfish individuals who see nature as objects to be exploited,” said Mae-Wan Ho as a senior research fellow at Open University in England.

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Genetic engineering of crops has been going on even though scientists have submitted strong cautions and evidence substantiating their concerns.  People opposed to genetic engineering are concerned about the risks of altered genes escaping into non-crop plants and the risks of pests, such as insects and viruses, developing a resistance to genetically modified plant pesticides.

We need to be moving away from unsustainable food production back to sustainable food production.

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The corruption is so widespread that I believe this is the time described in the Book of Revelation.

FDA approved AquaBounty Technologies’ application to sell AquAdvantage salmon to U.S. consumers on November 19, 2015.   The decision marks the first time a genetically-modified animal has been approved to enter the U.S. food supply.  To create salmon that grow faster, AquaBounty Technologies added a growth hormone-regulating gene from a Pacific Chinook salmon with a promoter from an ocean pout to the Atlantic salmon’s 40,000 genes.  Wikipedia

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This frankenfish does not even have to be labeled as such in the grocery store.  There are concerns that the wild salmon population could be driven to extinction by relatively few AquAdvantage salmon.  There are also concerns about the genetic stability and the long-term effects on consumers and the environment of this risky and unnecessary technology.  Cheating often comes with dreadful consequences.  Forgive them for they know not what they do.

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What if it is Armageddon?  It is better to trust in the Lord than to put confidence in man (Psalms 118:8 KJV).

Therefore, I am a huge proponent of organic marijuana and hemp, even though I hold patents on synthetic cannabinoids.  I should know what I am talking about because I am a medical marijuana patient.  I have chronic pain from being hit by drunk drivers, from surgeries, from a nervous breakdown and from many other causes.

Pain has a purpose, which is to let you know to stop it, or you will die.  So, pain is a good thing.  It is like realizing that you were wrong and feeling bad about it.  Otherwise, you would just go right back to being wrong again. 

Repentance means acknowledging your sins, praying to God for help and refraining from sinning any more.  Salvation requires repentance and acknowledgement of one God.  Salvation is conjunction with God.  The ultimate self-help book is the book that helps you connect directly with God so that you learn the truth for yourself.  Constituting the ultimate self-help book, the Instructions for Helping to Improve the Human Condition are freely available on this website.  Reading the Instructions for Helping to Improve the Human Condition is guaranteed to make you sexier.  So, be heart-healthy, y’all!  I love you!

Medical Mold

The original doctors in medicine were to keep soldiers healthy and return them quickly to the battlefield during war.

When Mary, mother of our Lord, finally found Archangel Michael in this lifetime, they were both graduate students at one of the greatest medical research centers in the heartland of the then richest and most powerful country in the world.  The baby boomers had taken over and, like locusts, they were devouring every last resource in the greediest rush.  Even worse, they were ever fearful that the next generation would do to them what they had done to those before them; namely, knock them down and walk over their bodies to get what they wanted.  And what they wanted was to dominate others because of their infernal self-love and pride in their own intelligence.

Fearful people are not leaders because fear is a strongly negative emotion that causes mistakes.  In life-or-death situations, mistakes result in morbidity and mortality.  Most scientists are riddled with fear because they suffer from an illusion of being separate from God.  This is scary, indeed.  But love of themselves, love of money, and pride in their own intelligence lead most scientists into opposition with God, also known as hell.

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Having taken virtually complete control of research funding, the boomers were intent on keeping it all to themselves unto their deaths.  In fact, they demanded double-digit increases in their prosperity every year.  If they were ever going to let anyone have anything, then it would be their children, competent or not, bypassing the entire generation in between that they crossed out, fittingly known as Generation X.

To prevent the meritorious from rising up, the boomers played god to change the natural order of things.  Since scientific research and medicine fall within the military industrial complex in the most modern world, aspiring doctors were subjected to the most common and ancient military tactics to break down, brainwash, and control people.  Those most recalcitrant to the brainwashing were dismissed as insane.  In perhaps the greatest assault on science ever, the baby boomers implemented the divide and conquer strategy to maintain power.

They spread falsities about a great need for scientists in the United States of America.  During the 1990’s, the boomers flooded the USA with immigrants mainly from India and China who supposedly had equivalent PhD and MD degrees, albeit earned under developing-world conditions.  On the medical side, the Chinese MD degrees were considered similar to the Bachelor’s degree in the USA.  On the research side, however, placing them above American graduate students and scientists generated resentment from undergraduate students who now had teaching assistants for whom English was a distant second language.  More falsities were spread that Chinese and Indian scientists were more qualified and competent and intelligent than American scientists.  Racial stereotypes of intelligence and industriousness goaded the hiring of people who could not even answer the interview questions.

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We were all treated poorly, but the immigrants had the extra motivation of getting a green card after a number of years of loyal servitude.  This would allow them permanent residence in the USA and the chance for their children to be Americans.  Atheist immigrants working as scientists were far too quick to bend to the wills of the malicious narcissists who were our white male bosses.  Don’t forget that the original purpose of medical doctors was to keep soldiers fighting on the battlefield during war.  Atheist immigrants also wanted to get themselves and their kind in charge.  You see, immigration policies are designed to turn people against each other, not to achieve cultural integration.

As the boomers filled their laboratories with more and more indentured servants, holding everyone back and relentlessly increasing the competition for an insufficient number of jobs, scientific fraud skyrocketed and production of junk data published in junk journals made it increasingly difficult to sort out any truths among the lies, corruption and grandstanding.  New pathogens were created purposefully, inadvertently and recklessly and unleashed upon the world in likewise manner.  Mind-boggling quantities of the most hazardous waste in the world were generated in a mad rush to get the results that could confirm the boss’ hypothesis and that could be published in the top journals, all of which was required to get and maintain jobs.  Sometimes thousands of experiments had to be done to get an anomalous result that would please the man with the biggest god complex, who the new system was rapidly advancing to the top of the pyramid.

It was this grim setting that produced a love as delicate and unexpected as a magnificent flower arising out of a mound of waste in the aftermath of a devastating war.

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Most people do not seem to think of Mary and Michael as scientists, but who else would they be these days?  After all, science purports to be the most noble profession.  And it stands to reason that such prototypical figures of humanity would be most interested in the truth to unite with good to help make the world a better place so that there can be heaven on earth.

In a world where science was the most accepted side to be on in the God versus science debate and just about anyone could fancy themselves as a god, there was little to no danger of Mary or Michael discovering their true selves, in spite of all of their past anomalies.  But then, even climate change can be swept under the rug!

When Mary was entering the laboratory where she performed the research for her doctorate degree, she had to share a bench with another scientist who was finishing his degree and preparing to leave the laboratory.  Upon his departure, she would also assume his former position as the only white person in the laboratory, like the “Jolly Green Giant,” only white.  He went to work in another laboratory in another building across the same campus, which just happened to be where the Archangel Michael worked.

Michael had gone to high school with Mary’s former lab mate, and they had other fundamental characteristics in common, too.  As a most notable example, they both loved black women, which was absolutely taboo in those days and in those places.  Somehow people with certain commonalities, while not overtly apparent, find each other and recognize each other nevertheless.

For Mary, it was oppression that squashed her down to the bottom of the human race where she looked around to see who else was there and fell in love with black man.  But it was almost impossible, obviously, for mixed couples in those days, particularly in their world.

And the Archangel Michael, sadly, was in the process of failing in his attempt to take on the challenge of a white man dating a black woman in a red state.  His high school buddy, seeing a chance to swoop in and rescue the broken-hearted African queen after the impending breakup, recognized that Mary could facilitate the process by attracting Michael’s attention away from her.

Michael’s high school friend organized a party at his house and made sure that Michael and Mary would both be there.  The Archangel Michael was dreadfully ill, and he was not the only one.  In fact, Mary was becoming sicker every day, too.  Sick people feel terrible, which makes it hard for them to be nice or happy.  The Archangel Michael did not act at all like the person Mary was expecting based on the mutual friend’s description of someone who could be perfect for her.  But most people were already married by then, and the left-overs were becoming apparent.  So, Mary asked Michael to lunch before leaving the party, and he said no.

To make matters even worse, the African queen had plans of her own.  Not to be so easily displaced from her chance at marrying a doctor-in-training, she set Mary up with another man in place of Michael.  Group encounters were horribly awkward in such a small world while Michael tried to convince his friend to give him Mary’s phone number despite his unfortunate behavior at the party.  When Michael finally called Mary weeks later, she should have said no.  But instead she said, “I thought you’d never ask.”

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They rode bicycles along the river and they lived along the river, always.  He had water to drink, apples to eat, tools to fix a flat tire and so much more.  He had plans that fit nicely with hers; namely, to try to make the world a better place.  His hair was long, his brain was powerful, and his thighs and gluteal muscles were enormous from riding his bicycle hard up and down hilly landscapes in preparation for annual races.  She was a dancer and a waitress, likewise in the process of sacrificing her fitness and, ultimately, virtually everything to greedy, insatiable science.

They fell madly in love, only to be ensnared in many, many more webs woven out of the conspiracy of evil to destroy love and to hold back most those who are most ahead.

None of the doctors could (or would) figure out what was wrong with Michael et al.  This was surprising since Michael was the “Golden Boy” of the research university and medical school campus.  He was first pick for grooming into shoe-shine boy of the top dog with the biggest god complex.  Michael’s hazel green eyes shining on the cover of the medical center’s magazine just made you wonder what he was up to.

He was in the midst of an educational program to earn a medical doctor degree and a philosophical doctor degree.  He felt this combination was essential to achieve his goal of practicing preventative medicine and performing scientific research.  He had completed the first half of medical school and passed the first of a series of examinations required to become licensed as a medical doctor by a government agency.  The remaining half of medical school consists of clinical training, which he was to complete after performing research to earn his PhD degree.

Mary and Michael were both working on their PhD degrees when they met.  Technically competitors, they envisioned a future where they could combine the cells he was making with the viruses she was making.  Other men had told her that it was too dangerous, that she couldn’t do math and that their wife would never work.  But when Mary told Michael that she would be home from the laboratory at around 9:30 pm, he said, “okay, if I don’t hear from you by 11:30 pm or so, I will start to worry.”  He understood.

He did research in a building that doubled as a medical clinic where very sick patients were seen.  Housing biological research and patient care under the very same roof was one of those asinine ideas that could only have come from someone in charge of things they know nothing about.  Ironically, people were once again falling ill in the name of medicine.  It was reminiscent of the “holy” war oxymoron.

Graduate students work day and night, every day and every night, at least in the hard science fields.  The women have always been severely outnumbered, not to mention severely oppressed, by the men.  A female Korean post-doctoral researcher had to serve tea on her knees to the Japanese men in the laboratory where she worked.

A constellation of symptoms was emerging in the students, staff, and patients alike that included fatigue, headache, cancer, difficulty breathing, skin irritations, chronic diarrhea, nausea, and vomiting, irritation of mucous membranes in the eyes, nose, throat, and gastrointestinal tract, ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease and so on.  Some even died.

The cause of these illnesses was elusive to say the least.  The non-specificity of the symptoms, the variety of the symptoms, the differences in the reactions of individuals depending on factors such as their health and fitness and age and how much they worked, and the unthinkability of the culprit kept the secret safe for far too long.

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The most unlikely hero of this story was the heating and cooling guy.  It was the heating and cooling guy who saw Archangel Michael working in the building day and night and warned him that there were problems that adversely affect health and could even be deadly.  Michael showed the heating and cooling guy the incubator he used to house the stem cell cultures he was growing.  Such experiments routinely suffered fungal contaminations, and the incubators had to be sterilized at regular intervals.  The heating and cooling guy freaked out because he knew that molds which grow at 37°C, human body temperature, are the most dangerous ones because they can eat you.  Even he knew that.  And he lost his job, too.

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By the time Mary met Michael, he was so ill that she worried he might die.  Everyone made fun of him, including even his ex-girlfriend.  Everyone, except Mary.  “It’s all in your head,” that’s what they said.

He was so sick that he had to wear a charcoal filter mask over his face to make it through the day.  His gastrointestinal tract was suffering from continual inflammation due to non-stop irritation that resulted in diarrhea so bad it was difficult to maintain enough calories in the body.  The accompanying flatulence was so devastating that no one would dare to ride the elevator with him.  But they did ask him for aspirins more and more, and they were experiencing gastrointestinal distress of their own as judged by the smells and messes in the bathrooms, not to mention the difficulty finding a free toilet on a really bad day.  This, of course, just prompted the janitors to install air fresheners that automatically sprayed toxic chemicals into the closed spaces of the bathroom at regular intervals and made matters so much worse.

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Young people were having entire portions of their colons removed.  Some would end up with colostomy bags.  But the show had to go on.  Anyone who couldn’t handle it was deemed weak, unfit, unworthy, even insane.

Michael took Mary to the symphony one weekend.  Future pillars of society, they were interested in culture in addition to culturally interesting.  But Michael’s face was particularly pale, with tinges of green on the sides.  Maybe the music will do him some good, she reasoned.  They were all dressed up and with tickets in hand.  They settled into their seats, and the overture began.  But then he ran and ran and ran.  He had to run as fast as he can.

She sat there alone.  She waited for him to return, but he never came back.  At the intermission, she found him in the lobby, trembling sick and barely able to stand.  “What happened today?” she asked him.  “Today we opened the ductwork,” he said.  She took him home and nursed him back to health, over the next twenty years, against violent opposition.

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The ductwork, which carries the air throughout the building that people breathe, was insulated on the inside with fiberglass insulation.  Humid air and roof leaks made the insulation wet.  This allowed a carpet of various molds to grow on the fiberglass insulation lining the ductwork.  As the air was forced through the ductwork to heat and cool the building, the air picked up spores of molds growing inside the ductwork and blew them all around the building for everyone to breathe and be continuously blasted with.  Some of the mold spores blowing around in the air that happened to land in growth medium in the incubator grew like crazy.  There were even molds growing in the cold rooms.

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The budding young scientists knew just what to do.  They sent samples of the different colored molds out to an independent testing laboratory to be identified.  They also found a medical doctor who was able to demonstrate Michael’s allergic reactions to various specific types of mold.

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Immunology is like war.  Your body has an army to protect it from invaders.  Every time an enemy has to be fought, there is collateral damage (inflammation) to the battlefield (your body).  Further, the army in your body is so sophisticated that it remembers every enemy in great detail and customizes and amplifies the response more and more each time it faces that same enemy.  It takes weapons like hydrogen peroxide (grenades) to neutralize enemies.  The more the weapons must be used, the more the collateral damage builds up, especially if the war is non-stop and the same enemy persists.  Winning the war usually comes down to a game of numbers.  One enemy is easily defeated, but a continuous onslaught of great numbers of enemies can defeat.  Thus, avoidance is the best policy when it comes to allergies.

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They made an appointment to confront the Dean of the medical school.  Michael couldn’t believe how brave Mary was to offer to go with him.  He knew she was serious by the way she said it, and he was instantly more in love with her.  And when she actually showed up to the appointment, then he really started to believe all the crazy stories she had told him.  She had no fear.  It was so unsettling.

Mycotech reportComment Reference Page

The Dean met Michael and Mary in his outer office.  They presented him with the data they had put together showing that the buildings were making everyone sick.  The Dean’s big, fat, red nose became purple.  Beads of sweat appeared on his forehead.  His abdomen, enlarged in the liver area, made it obvious that he was an alcoholic and had been for some time.  Unable to practice medicine, he had assumed purely administrative duties.

He lied and said they had already removed it all.

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But in reality, they had only shoved a vacuum hose through portions of the ductwork that they accessed by cutting holes into it here and there.  And that is how Michael got a piece of it.  The mold was growing back as they were speaking.

Decades later, Michael and Mary opened the time capsule containing the pieces of ductwork given to him by the ductwork cleaning company:

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The Dean threatened them.  He said they would never work in that state again, or get a good recommendation for any position elsewhere, unless they kept their mouths shut.

“I came to do preventative medicine, so if you are going to do that, then I am going to the press,” replied the Archangel Michael.  And he did.  He launched a class action lawsuit against the medical center, too.

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And that was the beginning of how Michael and Mary both ended up banished to Switzerland.  But they did a lot of talking to people, convincing people, the smartest people.  They tried anyway.  And there was a lot of positive change during the succeeding time.  Indeed, sick building syndrome is so well-known by now that the insurance companies have already done their best to avoid paying for it.

Molds eat chemicals.  Since you are what you eat, molds are a lot of chemicals.  Perhaps this explains why over-exposure to mold resulting in allergies is also associated with multiple chemical sensitivity.

Poor graduate students threw away all shampoos, conditioners, lotions, hair care products, cleaning products, detergents, perfumes, and scented products containing synthetic chemicals.  They could not afford it, but they filled many trash cans with virtually all of the contents of all of the closets of the house.  They bought natural products made with plants.

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Michael ate only potatoes for weeks until his gastrointestinal tract settled down enough to add back one food at a time, rejecting any food that caused any sort of adverse reaction, which was usually acute.  Only whole foods that were organic were added back, no processed foods, no bread, no flour of any grain, no sugar (including fruit), no salt, no preservatives, flavors, gums, colors, thickeners or stabilizers.  The discipline and motivation that it takes to resist so much temptation forever is simply unfathomable to most, obviously.  For Archangel Michael, however, the task is not too great, even though it is a lifelong battle, and even though he had to sacrifice his career as a medical doctor.  But that never stopped him from practicing preventative medicine!

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Before high school graduation, all students should learn about indoor air quality, environmental health, microbiology, nutrition, first aid, interest rates, amortization, and so on.  Let’s make America literate again!

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Empower women with basal thermometers, please!

Most Favored Readers,

I have figured out how to empower women all over the world, and I need your help because time is running out.  I think we need to get a basal thermometer to every woman of child-bearing age in the whole world before the fossil fuel era collapses completely.  Please allow me to explain, and I promise to be as brief (and entertaining) as possible.  It is about sex, so I hope that helps.  I do love you, I hope you know.

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Environmental damage, squandering of natural resources, cutting down too many trees, overpopulation and unbridled greed are factors in the demise of doomed societies.  Clearly, this world is well on its way.  We have become completely dependent on fossil fuels and peak oil is rapidly disappearing in the rear-view mirror.  In just hundreds of years, we have burned up millions of years’ worth of fossil fuels.  In fact, the low-hanging fruits have been harvested and what is left is harder to get.  We are at the point where our drinking water, required for life, is being risked by unnecessary, leaky, crude oil pipelines and fracking in the futile attempt to fill our insatiable consumption.  Insanity has taken over.  Our environment has become so polluted that society can no longer bear the cost of all the consequent sicknesses.  We must transition back to a sustainable way of life, and the remaining fossil fuels are best used for this purpose (see “Weaning Ourselves from Fossil Fuels” blog post on http://www.myspiritualassociation.com).

Our unsustainable way of life is collapsing with the rapacious exploitation of all natural resources.  It is time to think about what we need to take forward, and I contend that the basal thermometer cause is worthy.  With a basal thermometer, a woman can know her ovulation cycle.

It is important for a woman to know when she is ovulating because then she will know on what days every month she is most likely to become pregnant if she has sexual intercourse allowing a sperm to fertilize an egg released from her ovary.

Even today, there are women out in the bush with the Zika virus and without fossil fuel-dependent conveniences such as birth control pills.  Having a basal thermometer would be a lot better than nothing.  In fact, coupled with a natural condom, it can be a pretty effective means of family planning.  Natural condoms are made from the intestinal membrane of a lamb (a thin layer of sheep cecum, a part of the intestine) and they are biodegradable.

I recommend the Geratherm® Non-Mercury Basal Thermometer.  Sure, you can use others, but here are my reasons why I choose this particular one:

  • Geratherm is a German company with 125 years of experience manufacturing glass thermometers.
  • Geratherm developed Galinstan®, a substitute for the toxic mercury that non-digital thermometers used to be made with.
  • Galinstan® is a liquid alloy that is non-mercury and non-toxic.
  • If the thermometer accidentally breaks, Galinstan® can be cleaned up with warm soapy water.
  • The Geratherm thermometer exceeds ASTM standards with an accuracy of +/- 0.1°F.  Please note that a woman’s temperature can rise an average of 0.5°F just after ovulation; therefore, an ultra-sensitive thermometer is required.
  • Since the thermometer is not digital, it does not require any batteries that would need to be replaced, and the thermometer should last forever, as long as it is not broken.
  • The package inserts contain excellent information, in different languages even, including Arabic, English, Portuguese, and Spanish (I think, see below). Your first graph is already included, and you can use it to create more.
  • Each thermometer costs about $20 on Amazon.com. Let us ask Geratherm to make us a deal for any larger orders we can get together.

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After the initial investment, the project is sustainable since the thermometers can be used indefinitely until or unless they break.  Further, the project can dramatically increase understanding of basic biology worldwide, in a way that empowers women and so everyone, really.  Supplying women with basal thermometers could drastically cut down on the need for fertility clinics and fossil fuel-based drugs whose risks are not truly known until millions of people take them for extended periods of time under careful scientific monitoring.  We all know that careful scientific monitoring by non-biased scientists is not occurring for anything being tested on the people.  The basal thermometer project could also have a huge impact on reproductive health since women will be more in tune with their own bodies and will therefore know sooner should any problems arise.  Early detection, in turn, can be critical for a good prognosis.

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To chart one’s fertility cycle using a basal thermometer, a woman simply takes her temperature before she gets out of bed at the same time each morning.  She places the thermometer under her tongue for 3 minutes before eating, drinking, smoking or any physical activity.  Then she records her temperature every day on a graph having temperature on the vertical axis (about 96°F to 99.5°F in 0.1°F increments, or about 35.9°C to 37.5°C in 0.1°C increments) and days of the cycle on the horizontal axis (starting with the first day of the menstrual cycle).  After completing about three charts, a pattern of ovulation should become visible.  Look how many fundamental skills and principles we can teach around this singular exercise.

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Right now, there is an online Fertility Charting Tool at www.ovulation-calculator.com.  See also OvaGraph.com for examples of basal body temperature charts.  Consult your doctor for more guidance.

I believe this project is critically important because I am a woman who has taken care of herself and others since I was 18 years old.  My older sister and I were both in college when my father got laid off from work along with thousands of other geologists by the filthy-rich oil and gas industry.  My father was an excellent scientist trained in Germany and harvested by North America in the aftermath of World War II.  Due to the impending collapse of civilization as we know it today, there is an urgency to get these thermometers and the accompanying information out to as many women of child-bearing age in the world as possible right now before raw materials become less available, high-quality manufacturing shuts down and shipping becomes difficult then impossible.

I need your help.

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Scitainment

Dear Readers,

I love you and I want you to know that I do not take you for granted.  I have asked you for comments about my writing but have mostly heard back about my ass and what the front looks like.  Clearly diversion is needed.  So I am not saying no to more pictures.  Right now, though, I have for you an attempt at making science entertaining:  Scitainment, Inc.

I was searching for proof of the soul to turn all atheists to the Lord for once and for all when I had my company called Scitainment, incorporated in 1997.  Of course I am such a complete failure at everything that I hope we can all get some amusement out of it at least.  Also, way too far ahead of my time I am, or crazy, depending on your perspective I suppose.  No matter what, everyone knows that someone like me cannot successfully work for anyone else.  Just another reason I have such a hard and lonely way to go:  sink or swim.

While I am afraid it may be true that most scientists would rather believe in ridiculous alternate explanations than our Lord, I still believe that real scientists respect and appreciate and love the supernatural.

Francis Collins is Director of the National Institutes of Health and openly Christian after having converted from atheism at age 27 (see Time, November 13, 2006, Vol. 168, No. 20).  Before being appointed director of the NIH, Collins led the Human Genome Project and other genomics research initiatives as director of the National Human Genome Research Institute (Wikipedia).

Emmanuel Swedenborg (1688-1772), the greatest scientist of all time, had a spiritual awakening at age 56.  He then became the most prolific theological writer ever.  One cannot even read everything he wrote, seriously.  It is a miracle which hardly anyone seems to know about or talk about, which is weird.

William J. Baldwin became a dentist in Southern California in 1970 (must have been nice).  He pursued training in hypnosis as an adjunct to his dental practice.  This training went well beyond the field of dentistry, and in 1982 he left dentistry and enrolled in a doctoral program in clinical psychology.  He graduated in 1988 and went on to become one of the pioneers of spirit releasement therapy (see Spirit Releasement Therapy:  A Technique Manual, second edition, 2009).

At best, the next scientist can only take an incremental step, in the right direction, beyond where the last scientist left off.  Baldwin recognizes scientist and psychiatrist Carl Wickland and his wife Anna for their work detailed in the book Thirty Years Among the Dead that was published in 1924.  The Wicklands’ methods formed the basis for techniques developed by Baldwin.  In turn, I recognize Baldwin’s methods as the basis for the techniques detailed in the “Instructions for Helping to Improve the Human Condition” posted on this website.  Baldwin never got to meet his mentor, but his book was always there for him.  It is the same for me.

Enough about me; this story is about you:

All humans are made of trillions of cells, but the DNA in the cells of one human differs from that in the cells of every other human.  Your DNA is a comprehensive biological atlas of you.  Information about many aspects of you, such as your health, is encoded in your DNA.  You should have access to your DNA, and so should your loved ones.

It is possible to possess samples of one’s own DNA that are large enough to see with the naked eye and that can be stored at room temperature.  DNA samples can be passed down through generations as family heirlooms and potentially used for analyses to establish things like identity, lineage, inheritance patterns, probable strengths and weaknesses.  You can even incorporate your DNA samples into art for display, such as a family tree with DNA samples from various family members.  DNA samples can also be incorporated into jewelry and given as uniquely meaningful gifts.  In this way, you can give a part of yourself to a loved one, something no one else can give them.  So much for diamond rings.  I was able to make your DNA for you for about the same money or less than most couples spend on a diamond engagement ring.

What is DNA?

DNA stands for deoxyribonucleic acid.  DNA is the molecule of heredity.  It is DNA that is physically passed from parent to offspring, carrying the traits that result in children having their father’s nose or their mother’s eyes.  Half of your DNA is from your mother and half is from your father.  DNA exists as long, paired strands spiraled into a double helix.  DNA is packaged into units called chromosomes which are housed in the nuclei of cells that make up the human body.

What information does your DNA contain?

Your traits, such as eye color, health and maybe even thought patterns, are determined by your genes which are sections of a DNA molecule.  Genes are units of heredity that carry the blueprints for making proteins.  Proteins do everything that gets done in a cell and in the body.  Genes, through the proteins they encode, determine all body processes, including how the body responds to challenges from the environment.  Your genes constitute a blueprint of your possibilities and limitations.  They hold an encyclopedia of information about you and, indirectly, about your relatives.  The legacy of generations of ancestors, genes carry the key to similarities and uniqueness.

Why is it valuable for you to have your DNA (genes) at your disposal?

The value of your DNA sample is the same as that of your family portraits; it provides documentation of you.  But not only can you look at your DNA, you can also look into it.  Collecting DNA samples from your family members and passing them down through the generations will result in the ultimate history of your family.

DNA fingerprinting can determine things like gender, physical characteristics, and whether two people came from the same family.  The process is complicated, but the result is simple.  Each DNA sample is turned into a set of lines, like the bar code on price tags for store products.  The lines of one sample can be compared to the lines of another to see if they are alike.

In the past few years, researchers have learned how to test for hundreds of genetic disorders, and more new tests are becoming available all the time.  More than 4,000 diseases such as sickle cell anemia and cystic fibrosis are known to be genetic and passed on in families.  DNA-based genetic testing involves examining a person’s DNA for signals of health and sickness, ability and disability, strength and weakness.  Genetic testing can be helpful in diagnosing disorders and predicting chances of developing a particular disease or risk of passing a genetic disorder to a child.  Knowing your genetic profile could suggest what health-related behaviors you should follow and offer you greater potential for early diagnosis, effective treatment and accurate prognosis.  An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, so eloquently noted by Benjamin Franklin.  Yes, there are 16 ounces in a pound (and about 28 grams of flower per ounce, while we are at it).  Knowing your genetic profile could also be very helpful to your offspring for generations to come.

How about this one for a timely headline:  “23andMe helps identify genetic links to common skin cancer”?

What else should you know about genetic testing?

The decision to have a genetic test deserves careful preparation and thought because the issues are so complex and so new and the consequences so profound.  If you have a pressing issue, genetic testing may be appropriate for you now.  For the vast majority of us, however, the time for genetic testing is in the future.  This is because the legal, social and ethical issues surrounding genetic testing have not been resolved.

Under debate are issues such as privacy and protection against the use of test results to discriminate in employment or insurance coverage (at least coverage can no longer be refused for preexisting conditions today, except for poverty).  Before predictive gene tests become generally available, specialists and society at large need to address major ethical concerns.  The present moment, when genes are being discovered but before tests become widely available, offers a window of opportunity to prepare for the future.

Scitainment offered clients purified, visible quantities of their own DNA.  In providing clients with their DNA samples, I could assure them privacy, confidentiality and anonymity because Scitainment was owned and operated solely by me, my husband, and my parents.  My company had no obligations, ties, or interests in and was not connected in any way to any database, organization, government agency, insurance company, investors, etc.  Furthermore, having DNA samples separate from the body is designed to ensure confidentiality of genetic testing.  We had planned to offer additional services preferentially to our first clients.

How are DNA samples prepared?

Say your goal was to obtain as many leaves of a particular plant as possible.  Starting with a seedling of the plant, you would nurture it under just the right growth conditions so that it would become as large and healthy as possible.  Then you would take cuttings from the plant and produce even more plants that are all the same.  Eventually there would be a lot more leaves than the original seedling had.

In a similar manner, we grew large numbers of cells from a sample of skin and then purified DNA from the cells.  Before cells divide into two, they first duplicate all of their DNA.  Thus, by growing cells we can achieve natural and complete amplification of DNA.  This requires a small biopsy of normal skin to be performed.  The procedure is similar to having a mole removed.  It took about two or three months to culture cells from skin biopsy samples, and we encouraged clients to visit our laboratory during that time if possible to watch their cells grow.  Cultured cells are mortal.  That is, after a variable period of active proliferation, they inevitably lose their capacity to divide and they eventually die.  However, we cryopreserved some of the cells while they still had the capacity to multiply.  Cryopreserved cells can be thawed even years later and allowed to grow again.  Thus, if someone wanted more of their DNA in the future, it could be derived from their preserved cells and there would be no need to have another skin biopsy done.

Although DNA can be purified from blood, it is possible to derive only relatively small amounts in this manner.  This is because the vast majority of the cells comprising blood are red blood cells which do not contain DNA.  You could not donate enough blood to yield as much DNA as can be obtained from cells grown out of a skin biopsy specimen.  Hair, nail clippings, and saliva are also common substrates for genetic testing; but again, these substrates provide a very limited amount of DNA that may be insufficient to perform all the analyses you want.  We were able to provide clients with so much of their DNA that they could have a multitude of analyses done.

I hope you love DNA as much as I do!

DNA does not, however, encode the soul!  DNA encodes the physical body, which is the vessel for the soul here in the physical world.  The soul is energy.  It may be a luminous field, it may encompass the colors of the visible spectrum of light, it may be a biomagnetic field.  It seems efforts are always underway to image, measure, or otherwise describe it.  It is believed that people with strong fields can transfer energy.

The body is the form of the soul, just as charity is the form of faith.  Charity is love toward the neighbor.  Faith is truth.

Charity through faith accomplishes good, not charity by itself or faith by itself.  Indeed, faith and charity are nothing unless they terminate in good deeds.

Charity opens the spiritual mind.  Faith comes through charity, which is a life in accordance with the 10 commandments (see Exodus Chapter 20 in the Bible and my first blog post).

All who lead a life of charity and faith are guarded by our Lord and raised into heaven after their judgment.

Only through strict discipline in a selfless life can one gain an understanding that goes beyond just learning and knowing.

In loving memory of my father, the Wolf, excellent scientist, I will pass your DNA down to your grandchildren whom you never got to meet.  The vial shown in the picture at the top of this blog post is a liquid form of DNA.  We also made a dry form for jewelry.