Is This The Extinction Event We Were Warned About?

Geologists have been talking about peak oil for quite a while now. Yet, there are still oil deposits that haven’t been tapped. And in some places fracking has been implemented to squeeze more out of the ground.

But, even if we use up all the oil in the world, it won’t be the end of life as we know it. There are substitute fuels and technologies waiting in the wings, waiting for that day when the powerful oil companies become redundant.

But there is another natural resource that is reaching its peak, and there are no substitutes for this resource, and most importantly, without it, all life on earth would perish.

If ever there was a potential extinction event it would probably be the depletion of phosphorus. Why is phosphorus so important? Every living thing (whether plant, animal, or human) needs phosphorus to produce healthy cells. So, the fact that the world’s reserves of phosphorus are dwindling fast is really bad news. Unlike oil, which is found in many areas of the globe, phosphorus is not as ubiquitous.

An estimated 85 percent of the globe’s phosphate reserve is controlled by Morocco’s royal family. Much of it is located in the Western Sahara. Jeremy Grantham, cofounder of the prominent Boston-based global investment firm Grantham, Mayo, Van Otterloo & Co., called this “the most important quasi-monopoly in economic history.”

Oddly, peak phosphorus doesn’t get the attention that peak oil gets and yet it is far more important. In a recent essay in Nature, Grantham, who also runs an environmental foundation, put the case bluntly: Our phosphorus use “must be drastically reduced in the next 20-40 years or we will begin to starve.”

The United States imports about 10 percent of our phosphate from Morocco. We also have some phosphorus mining operations in the U. S. The largest mining operation is in Florida.

Florida's strip mining operation solves one problem adn creates another.

Florida’s phophorus  mining creates a huge environmental problem.

Mining for phosphorus is environmentally devastating. It requires stripping large areas of land. It also creates massive amounts of phosphogypsum, an undesirable and toxic waste product. Phosphogypsum contains low levels of radiation and several heavy metals.

To date, these waste products have not been dealt with. There are huge piles of the stuff  in mining regions. The EPA estimates that central Florida houses nearly 1 billion metric tons of toxic phosphogypsum and it keeps growing to the tune of 32 million metric tons each year.

As the toxic waste piles grow, the phosphorus reserves dwindle. It is estimated that within 25 years Florida’s phosphorus will be depleted.

Is this a hopeless situation? No, there are ways to extract phosphorus from waste products, but to date no one is recycling waste products. Currently, phosphorus is allowed to fallow in the fields or wash away into waterways and eventually into the ocean. Animal manure and human urine are excellent sources of phosphorus. But there isn’t any infrastructure in place to recycle these waste products.

There is no simple solution, but its crucial that something be done soon because our other option is to pay outragious prices to the King of Morroco,  and eventually use up all the phosphorus.

One Man’s Dream Of A Far-Side Village

Professor Johann-Dietrich Woerner was recently appointed to the position of Director General of the European Space Agency (ESA) earlier this week. As the former Chair of the German Space Agency he comes well-equipped to manage the €4.4 billion annual budget of the ESA.

He will be overseeing various projects, such as, satellites used for observation, weather, communication and navigation, as well as the European astronauts on the International Space Station (ISS). There are also planned missions to Mars, Mercury and Jupiter.

But, his planned mission to the Moon could be the most ambitious of them all. The Moon? Hasn’t that been done? Well, not the way he envisions it.

When everyone else is talking about Mars, Professor Woerner is talking about the Moon. He has some very good arguments in his favor.

He wants to establish a base on the far side of the moon which would include a telescope that would be able to view further out into space than any other telescope that has been developed to date.

“The far side of the Moon is very interesting because we could have telescopes looking deep into the Universe, we could do lunar science on the Moon and the international aspect is very special,” he explains. “The Americans are looking to go to Mars very soon – and I don’t see how we can do that – before going to Mars we should test what we could do on Mars on the Moon.”

He is proposing, not just a base, but an actual village on the moon. This endeavor will be just as daring and difficult as a base on Mars. But the big advantage to populating the moon with scientists, astronomers, geologists, and such, instead of Mars, is the distance.

If there is an emergency that requires help from Earth, it is only a four day trip to the moon. A trip to Mars is six months.

What we learn on the Moon, about building workable shelters, growing food, dealing with health issues, and facing a plethora of unexpected problems would be applicable to what we would face on Mars.

He says, “A Moon village shouldn’t just mean some houses, a church and a town hall,” says Woerner. “This Moon village should mean partners from all over the world contributing to this community with robotic and astronaut missions and support communication satellites.”

For the moment, the Moon village is only an idea. No one is committing any funds. There are no plans on the drawing board. But there is new interest in the Moon, especially in Europe.
So, Woerner is pushing the idea for serious discussion. If anyone can get that discussion started it will be him. He is one of the world’s most powerful and respected space figures.

Next Step, Transhumanism

Last year, Rachel Dolezal was elected president of the Spokane, Washington chapter of the NAACP. However, last week she resigned that prestigious position because she was caught in a lie.

She lied about her racial heritage. There is absolutely no African-American ancestry in her family tree, yet she has been parading as an African-American for years. She claims to identify closer to that ethnicity more than her actual Czech-German blood line.

But, race in itself is not the bigger story. I’m looking at this in a totally different way than most people.

Consider another recent story that has been making headlines and magazine covers. I’m referring to the former Bruce Jenner. According to him, throughout his life, he felt there was a woman inside that desperately wanted out. As he grew older, medical advances and social attitudes had progressed to a point where he felt it was time to release the woman trapped inside. Bruce is no more. Caitlyn lives.

And then there are those who desparately desire to change, but will never be able to. Society is not ready for them, but neither is science. No, I am not talking about race or gender. No this goes even deeper. I’m talking about species.

Gary Matthews, of Pittsburgh lives much of his life as a dog. He first got this idea when he was a kid of seven years old and saw the Disney Movie, the Shaggy DA. At that age, his parents just assumed it was a child’s wild imagination when he barked and dug holes in the backyard with his bare hands. But when he continued these behaviors as a teen and then as an adult, his parents would scold him and forbid his dog bahaviors.

So he stopped—in front of them. But it went underground until his parents died.

Now as a 50-year old man, he lives much of his life as a dog named Boomer. He wears a shaggy dog costume, eats dog food from a bowl on the floor, chews on dog treats, and even sleeps in a doghouse he built himself. Not surprisingly, he is a member of a Pittsburgh Furry group.

In case you are unaware, Furries are people who dress up in animal costumes and socialize together. To many in the furry community it is an obsession as it is for Gary Matthews. Furry role playing was introduced to the public at large in a 2013 music video entitled “What Does The Fox Say

Vastly different as these three stories are, there is a common thread. Some people are willing to give up the person they are to become something totally different, taking the chance of being shunned by society.

Being born one thing (be it race, gender, or even species) is now becoming optional and changeable. With enough cash, creativity, and/or courage, we can transform ourselves into whatever we desire.

But should we? Are their limits? Where will this lead us next?

I believe that the next thing down the line is transhumanism. This involves augmenting humans with technology to enhance our mental and physical abilities.

People who are old enough, might remember the popular TV show “The 6 Million Dollar Man” starring Lee Majors in the title role. In this series, his sight, strength, and running speed was way beyond normal human ability. We didn’t have a name for it then, but that is the definition of transhumanism.

Many people who suffer now, could benefit greatly. Those who have lost limbs could have some of their normal abilities restored.

But, I predict that people with normal abilities will also be taking advantage of these technologies, to become super humans. And these super humans may become the soldiers of our future. Because, as we know, every time a new technology is developed, it eventually ends up on the battlefield.

A Former Believer Defects

I was a child of the sixties. This was a time when TV was broadcast in black and white. It was a time when we trusted our government and respected men like Walter Cronkite, Chet Huntley, and David Brinkley to give us the news each night.

When the president made an important speech, all three TV channels would interrupt regularly scheduled programming and broadcast the speech. The President’s picture would appear above the fold, on page 1 of every newspaper the next morning.

So, in 1961, when President Kennedy said, “I believe that this nation should commit itself to achieving the goal, before this decade is out, of landing a man on the moon and returning him safely to the earth,” the nation saw and heard that speech on TV, or read about it the next day in the newspaper.

My Dad has always been a huge fan of the NASA programs, especially the Apollo missions. So it was natural that our entire family was glued to the only TV in the house, when eight years later, regularly scheduled programming was interrupted again for another speech.

But this time it wasn’t a president speaking on the White House lawn. No, this speech was given by an astronaut, standing on the surface of the moon. “One small step for a man, one giant leap for mankind”

America had landed on the moon! It was a bittersweet accomplishment. President Kennedy did not live to see his goal come to fruition, but WE, had won the space race!

Or had we?

For decades I have been annoyed by those who said we didn’t really go to the moon. In my opinion these people were nut jobs and wore tin foil hats. I never took them seriously. However, as the  years ticked by I softened my opinion of them and began to listen to their arguments. This year, I’ve considered getting one of those tinfoil hats.

Why, after so many years, am I beginning to doubt that we ever went to the moon? The debunkers analyze the pictures that the astronauts supposedly took on the moon. They discuss things like shadows pointing in different directions as if there were two light sources instead of one (the sun). They also claim that using certain tools they can prove that the hills in the background were much closer than they should have been and were probably a backdrop.

In response to these photography anomalies, I have always countered with agreement that it is possible that these photos were taken on Earth. They could have been taken during practice drills held in the desert. And of course they would have to practice taking photographs. These practice photographs could have been substituted for the real thing in the likely event that the camera or film itself was damaged during the trip. So, it wasn’t the debunkers that finally won me over. I’m a really hard sell.

I recently watched a NASA produced video, narrated by Kelly Smith, a NASA engineer, discussing a future manned mission to Mars, I tuned in to learn about the challenges this mission faced. The moon was not on my mind at all, but what he said was very pertinent to the Apollo missions. And what he revealed, hit me square between the eyes.

According to Kelly, one of the biggest hurdles for a Mars mission, is not associated with Mars at all, but Earth. It’s an aspect of our own planet that is keeping us from taking that trip to Mars. Kelly didn’t say that it would have also prevented us from going to the Moon, but it surely would have. And that was when I realized the trips to the moon were all faked.

You see, there are these inconvenient barriers known as the Van Allen Radiation Belts. Scientists are trying to figure out how they will safely send astronauts through this layer of electromagnetic radiation that surrounds our planet. The amount of lead shielding needed to protect humans and machines would make the rocket too heavy to leave the launch pad

So, how did we do it in the 1960’s? Is the Van Allen Belt a new phenomena? No, its been there all along as far as we know. It was discovered several years before the first Apollo Mission. It get’s its name from James Van Allen, the American physicist who discovered this radiation barrier in 1958, 11 years before we were convinced that our astronauts first stepped on the moon.

Why is the Van Allen Belt such a problem? As, NASA engineer, Kelly Smith states in the video, The level of radiation in the Van Allen Belts are deadly to humans and will cause havoc with the instrumentation on board any spaceship.

NASA is looking for a solution, and will eventually figure it out, but this admission can only mean that no astronaut has ever traveled through the Van Allen Belts, otherwise they would already have a solution to this problem. Or there be no concern, since we have proof that it was not harmful to humans— most of the Apollo astronauts lived long and productive lives. I’m sorry, but if NASA is concerned about the Van Allen Belts it means no manned spaceship went to the moon. And it may be that even the unmanned trips to the moon and Mars never happened either.

This reality hits me to my core, but I now feel confident in saying that no human has ever walked on the moon. Everything was faked and staged. I’m almost ready to say that the unmanned missions were faked, too. We have been spoon fed Hollywood sound stage productions.  All the astronauts that we are to believe flew to the moon couldn’t get there and back without taking two trips through the deadly Van Allen Belts. And yet most of them lived to a ripe old age. Someone is lying and it’s not  Kelly Smith, the NASA scientist in the video that you can watch for yourself, below

This video is seven minutes long and very informative, but you can skip to the 3:00 minute mark to hear just the part about the Van Allen Belts

We should all be angry about this. NASA spent over 100 Billion dollars of taxpayers’ money to fake the Apollo missions alone. It angers and saddens me to have to say that. But there is no other explanation that I can find.

Superman Would Have Approved

Many of us remember the heartbreaking news of the tragic horse riding accident, in 1995, that left actor Christopher Reeve paralyzed from the neck down.

He was at the peak of his career, having starred as Superman in four hit movies. His work in Hollywood didn’t end completely, but it was drastically curtailed due to his injury.

He was optimistic that researchers would someday discover a treatment for spinal injuries. He believed that embryonic stem cells were the answer to a cure and lobbied the U.S. Congress to make legal their use in research. He died in 2004, unable to achieve that goal.

FAST FORWARD TO 2015
Two separate research teams in two different parts of the world are simultaneously working on treatments for spinal injuries. These two teams are not connected. They are not collaborating. And yet the two teams may have each discovered different halves of the future treatment for spinal injuries.

A NEW DRUG THERAPY
A group of U.S. scientists have developed a drug that can encourage nerves in the spinal cord to grow.
This drug concentrates on interfering with a natural reaction that occurs when the nerve cells are injured. Normally, when the spinal cord is damaged sugary proteins are released at the site of the injury, creating a sticky goo. The long spindly part of the nerve – the axon – gets trapped in this goo when it tries to cross the site of the injury.

The researchers used rats with spinal cord injuries in their study. These rats were injected with a chemical under the skin at the site of their injury. The drug works by disrupting the formation of the “sticky goo” which prevents nerve cells from growing after the injury. Lab tests resulted in 21 out of 26 rats showing some degree of recovery either in their ability to move or in bladder function.

“It was amazing – the axons kept growing and growing,” said lead researcher Professor Jerry Silver. “What we could see was really remarkable. Some recovered to a fantastic extent and so well you could hardly tell there was an injury. But, further testing in larger animals is needed before human trials can take place.”

Professor Silver expects that future therapy, resulting from this research, would most likely be used in conjunction with other treatments that are now being pioneered, such as nerve transplants and electrical stimulation.

Dr. Lyn Jakeman, from the US National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, said: “There are currently no drug therapies available that improve the very limited natural recovery from spinal cord injuries that patients experience. This is a great step towards identifying a novel agent for helping people to recover.”

This study was published in the journal, Nature.

A NEW CELL THERAPY
Darek Fidyka, 40, from Poland, was paralyzed from the chest down after being stabbed repeatedly in the back in a 2010 attack. He’s been confined to a wheel chair since that time. Recently a research team from the Institute of Neurology at the University College of London, tried an experimental treatment on Mr. Fidyka that shows real promise.

The treatment uses olfactory ensheathing cells (OECs). Olfactory glands are the only nerves in the human body that regrow and its the OECs that act as pathway cells, enabling nerve fibres in the olfactory system to be continually renewed.

Their experimental treatment involved two main procedures. In the first procedure, surgeons removed one of the patient’s olfactory bulbs and grew the cells in a culture for two weeks.

The second procedure, two weeks later, was more involved. In this step, they transplanted the cultured OECs into the spinal cord. They only had a drop-size (about 500,000 cells) of material to work with, and yet, they were able to make about 100 micro injections of these OECs just above and below the injury.

In addition to the injections, four thin strips of nerve tissue, were taken from the patient’s own ankle and placed across the 8mm (0.3in) gap on the left side of the cord (a narrow strip of nerve tissue on the right side had survived the knife attack and was still connected).

The scientists believed the OECs would provide a pathway to enable fibres above and below the injury to reconnect, using the nerve grafts to bridge the gap in the cord.

Today, Mr. Fidyka is walking again. He has to use a support frame, but he is thrilled with the outcome. He says, “It’s an incredible feeling. When you can’t feel almost half your body, you are helpless, but when it starts coming back it’s like you were born again.”

Professor Raisman, Chair of Neural Regeneration, led the team in the U.K. He said this is “more impressive than man walking on the moon.” Professor Wagih El Masri, Consultant and Spinal Injuries Surgeon remarked, “I have waited about 40 years for a moment like this and I am hopeful that this moment will be repeated and confirmed independently” Their research was published in the journal “Cell Transplantation”.

Unfortunately, Christopher Reeve died in 2004. The preliminary results of both of these studies would have been great news to him, maybe even hope for his condition. Ironically, his much touted embryonic stem cells were not part of either of these treatments. But somehow I think Superman would have approved.

Catching a Wave On The Moon

Imagine you have a telescope and you decide to take some video of the moon. You connect your digital camera to the telescope and start videotaping. You get some great footage and later review it.

As you review it you notice something that shouldn’t be there. At first it appears to be an abberration of the digital camera, and you consider cutting that part of the footage out of the video clip.

But the little voice in your head tells you to reconsider that idea. You view the footage again and it dawns on you. That is not a camera glitch. This is real. And this is going to rock the world.

This is not fiction, this actually happened to an amateur astronomer.  But,what did he see in the video that shocked him and changed his ideas of the nature of the moon?

His discovery was an out-of-place wave moving across the face of the moon. At first, the amateur astronomer, known anonymously, as Crrow777 on YouTube, thought it was a camera glitch but this explanation had to be thrown out because of the nature of the wave and the fact that he moved the camera at just that moment and the wave does not follow the movement of the camera. This accidentally captured phenomena is now making big waves on YouTube and on alternative radio programs.

Crrow777 carefully inspected the wave and ruled out everything except the fact that it does exist and it is local to the moon. The first time you see the video of this wave you might feel compelled to reject it as a hoax or some misidentification of something else. Give it some time to sink in.

This wave behaves like a very sophisticated holographic-like projection refreshing itself. But, it’s probably a technology far more advanced than any hologram. Whatever it is, it is likely hiding something on the surface of the moon. Otherwise, what would be its purpose?

Not suprisingly, when he shows his video to professional astronomers he is called a kook, fraud, and more.

However, Crrow777 is not the only one who has captured what he has dubbed the ‘lunar wave’. There are other amateur astronomers around the world who are now videotaping the lunar wave. They have even coordinated some of their taping sessions in an attempt to get simultaneous captures from different locations across the globe for comparison.

But, by far, the first known capture of this wave has been the best to date. If you are ready to have your world rocked, take a look at the video clip that started it all, The Lunar Wave. This version includes a very clear and informative narration by Crrow777, himself.

Check out this interesting interview on Higherside Chats.

Hey Kids! Let’s Roundup All the Essential Minerals

crop-duster

Thanks to Monsanto’s genetically modified corn, these crops can be sprayed with Roundup Weed Killer multiple times throughout the season.

If you haven’t heard of GMO corn or RoundUp-Ready Corn, you have probably been spending too much time on a mountain-top in Tibet. I suggest that you might want to stay there.

The first thing you need to understand about GMOs is Monsanto’s patented weed killer, marketed as RoundUp. The active ingredient in RoundUp is glyphosate. This product is widely used by mega-corporate farms to keep weeds from growing among their crops.

What many people don’t know is that an earlier version of RoundUp was originally developed as a chelator agent for use in cleaning the mineral buildup that accumulated in industrial pipes. Glyphosate bonds to minerals at the molecular level—most all minerals including calcium, iron, potassium, magnesium & manganese. Once bonded to the mineral buildup, it is then flushed out, leaving a clean pipe.

But now, glyphosate is used in herbicides. The same chelating process that cleans out pipes, also kills weeds because, like every living organism on Earth, they need essential minerals to thrive. For this reason, RoundUp cannot be used near natural farm crops, grazing land, hay fields, or even flower gardens, because it doesn’t play favorites. It can and will kill any green, leafy plant it encounters. In years past, farmers would spray their plowed fields a few weeks prior to planting their crop. But, once the seed or seedlings were planted, they couldn’t use RoundUp again until the next growing season.

Monsanto realized if they could develop a strain of corn that was immune to the chelating action of Roundup, they could multiply their sales to farmers by up to 10 times. The plan went like this: Charge the farmer a premium price for their special patented RoundUp -immune corn, then sell even more RoundUp for supplemental sprayings, because now farmers can spray their crops as often as they need to. The farmers will be thrilled to finally have a way to keep those pesky weeds out of their cornfields.

The plan worked beautifully. Now just about everything we eat has some level of Roundup-immune corn. Nearly all boxed, bagged, canned, and frozen products include some corn products, the most common being high fructose corn syrup.

Laboratory tests performed on Monsanto’s genetically modified corn indicate that Monsanto’s patented corn is as safe and nutritious as Mother Nature’s version. These conclusions should not surprised you at all. Anyone could plant it in their own backyard and it would be a good healthy source of food. But, the study does not indicate that the corn was subjected to multiple applications of RoundUp, this study means nothing. It is not the corn itself that is a danger to our health. corn

The danger lies in the fact that this strain of corn tolerates sprayings of RoundUpthroughout the growing season, at every stage of the corn’s growth cycle. It saves the farmer a lot of work and money. Instead, of hiring many farm hands and purchase expensive machinery to tackle the weeds, he hires one crop duster to spray the corn every couple weeks.

Maybe you remember, back in 1989, the controversy surrounding the plant growth regulator known as ‘Alar’. It was sprayed on apples, pears, and other tree fruits in the United States. It was determined that, even though these fruits were washed before processing, traces of Alar were still detected in juice and other products made from the sprayed fruit. As a result of these findings, the product was voluntarily withdrawn from the market by the manufacturer, Uniroyal Chemical Company.

But, Monsanto has too much invested in this project to pull their products off the market. This is not just a single chemical, this is a catalog of patented strains of corn and a growing catalog of other farm crops, that only have the benefit of tolerating their weed killer.

Yes, Glyphosate is being sprayed on our food in massive quantities, and like the Alar that stayed with fruits even after washing, has a huge potential of remaining within the food itself. When we ingest food containing corn products the likelihood that we are ingesting Roundup is quite high.

Everything we ingest, eventually ends up in our blood stream—the good, the bad, and the ugly, the same place where essential minerals are found. The only question lingering is, what does ingesting foods that have been sprayed multiple times with an industrial pipe cleaner do to our health?

That’s the study that needs to take place (and not by Monsanto or any lab they select)