Bring on the eggs!

Dietary cholesterol limits should be abandoned and vegetarian and Mediterranean diets recommended, according to an advisory committee report that will shape the nation’s dietary guidelines.

The scientific advisory report…will form the foundation for the 2015 Dietary Guidelines for Americans, to be released by the federal departments of Agriculture and Health and Human Services after a public comment period.

If the recommendations are followed, the 40-year-old warning on cholesterol — recommending no more than 300 mg/day, or about the amount found in two eggs — would disappear due to lack of evidence that it has much impact on arterial cholesterol or leads to heart disease…

Indeed, cholesterol wasn’t the only change suggested for the 5-year update to the nation’s dietary guidelines.

The advisory committee recommended adding three diets with more than 30% of calories from fat to the recommended list: A healthy diet based on U.S. foods, The Mediterranean diet, A vegetarian diet…Overall, though, the emphasis wasn’t on specific diets or nutrients but a dietary pattern.

The committee found evidence that a “healthy dietary pattern is higher in vegetables, fruits, whole grains, low- or nonfat dairy, seafood, legumes, and nuts; moderate in alcohol (among adults); lower in red and processed meats; and low in sugar-sweetened foods and drinks and refined grains.

“Additional strong evidence shows that it is not necessary to eliminate food groups or conform to a single dietary pattern to achieve healthy dietary patterns.

“Rather, individuals can combine foods in a variety of flexible ways to achieve healthy dietary patterns, and these strategies should be tailored to meet the individual’s health needs, dietary preferences, and cultural traditions.”

That conclusion drew an “Amen to that!” from David L. Katz, MD…president of the American College of Lifestyle Medicine…

Of course, I shudder to look forward to the headlines from mainstream media sources with 19th Century editorial boards, diatribes from dietary hustlers with a particular axe to grind and niche health fans of this week’s magic bullet [for only a small subscription fee].

Exercise and eating whatever is fresh – in moderation – is pretty much a given for survival. Excess in sugar and salt is the result of too much processed foods regardless of preference. Think about what you eat, folks. It ain’t that complex.

Obama and Congress back off on mandatory encryption bill


Burr and Feinstein continue to turn their backs on liberty and privacy

Draft legislation that could’ve forced U.S. corporations like Apple to decrypt data on-demand following a court order won’t be formally introduced this year, and has lost the support needed to advance anyway…

The bill — backed by Senators Richard Burr and Dianne Feinstein — didn’t have the support of the Obama administation, the sources told Reuters. Former CIA and NSA director Michael Hayden in fact claimed that the White House has “dropped anchor and taken down the sail.”

Well, NO LONGER had the support of Obama.

Although Burr and Feinstein are the Republican and Democratic heads of the Senate Intelligence Committee, respectively, Committee members from both political aisles have reportedly backed away from the legislation, particularly Democrats. No one in the House ever offered support…

The Burr-Feinstein bill emerged in the wake of Apple’s fight with the Department of Justice and the FBI over unlocking the iPhone of San Bernardino shooter Syed Rizwan Farook. Although the DoJ ultimately withdrew a court order asking Apple to build a workaround for iOS’ passcode retry limits, encryption issues had gained more prominence, and indeed many in U.S. law enforcement — such as FBI director James Comey — are still asking for backdoors, worried that encryption is putting some communications beyond their reach.

Most folks are aware of how and why such legislation illustrates the corruption of both political parties. Add in the sheer stupidity of introducing bills which can only affect communications inside the US – sort of – and the whole world gets an object lesson in how much of American politics is play-acting. Little morality plays designed to keep Talking Heads employed and useless politicians in office.

Senators put secret text in a bill giving FBI warrantless access to your email

A provision snuck into the still-secret text of the Senate’s annual intelligence authorization would give the FBI the ability to demand individuals’ email data and possibly web-surfing history from their service providers without a warrant and in complete secrecy.

If passed, the change would expand the reach of the FBI’s already highly controversial national security letters. The FBI is currently allowed to get certain types of information with NSLs — most commonly, information about the name, address, and call data associated with a phone number or details about a bank account.

Since a 2008 Justice Department legal opinion, the FBI has not been allowed to use NSLs to demand “electronic communication transactional records,” such as email subject lines and other metadata, or URLs visited.

The spy bill passed the Senate Intelligence Committee on Tuesday, with the provision in it. The lone no vote came from Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., who wrote in a statement that one of the bill’s provisions “would allow any FBI field office to demand email records without a court order, a major expansion of federal surveillance powers.”

Wyden did not disclose exactly what the provision would allow, but his spokesperson suggested it might go beyond email records to things like web-surfing histories and other information about online behavior. “Senator Wyden is concerned it could be read that way,” Keith Chu said…

Nothing released to the public about which Congress-creeps put this crap into the bill for the FBI. Richard Burr, from North Carolina, and Tom Cotton, from Arkansas, are two Republican Confederate stalwarts advocating for a police state as hard as any other backwardness – who may be responsible.

NSLs have a particularly controversial history. In 2008, Justice Department Inspector General Glenn Fine blasted the FBI for using NSLs supported by weak evidence and documentation to collect information on Americans, some of which “implicated the target’s First Amendment rights.”

NSLs have a sordid history. They’ve been abused in a number of ways, including … targeting of journalists and … use to collect an essentially unbounded amount of information,” Andrew Crocker wrote.

One thing that makes them particularly easy to abuse is that recipients of NSLs are subject to a gag order that forbids them from revealing the letters’ existence to anyone, much less the public.

Just another good reason why it’s called a “police state”. These thugs not only want the right to snoop into our lives unencumbered by any constitutional rights – they wish to continue the gag order process introduced to every aspect of American life by the Patriot [sic] Act. No more concerns about free speech if you’re not allowed to speak at all.