Sunday, January 31, 2010

Some facts about neurotransmitters that make SSRI antidepressants a very questionable medicines

I did publish it under another title in December, 2008:
"These are some facts that puzzle me:

Here: "Neurotransmitter is a specialized messenger cell that transfers or sends information from one type of cell to another. Scientists have managed to identify over 100 neurotransmitters in the human brain alone, but evidence suggests we have significantly more than this number. An unfortunate aspect of not being able to identify all neurotransmitter cells is that researchers, especially those developing medications to act on specific messenger cells, can’t always determine why or how medications work or fail to work. (emphasis mine)

You’re probably familiar with some of the identified neurotransmitter names. These include dopamine, GABA, serotonin, acetylcholine, and norepinephrine. Each of these performs some specific functions in the body. For instance serotonin is indicated in mood stability, emotional response, and temperature control. Acetylcholine is a neurotransmitter that allows for the person to willfully or voluntarily use his or her muscles. While researchers can suggest the possible effects of certain neurotransmitters, they not only haven’t identified them all, but also are nowhere near determining all effects of the messenger cells that have been identified."

Here: "The neurotransmitters work by interacting with receptors. These are minute areas on the nerve or other cells that make the cell respond in the appropriate way. Some psychiatric drugs block these receptors, reducing the effect of a neurotransmitter. Others increase the level of a neurotransmitter, so its effects last longer. Because they all interact, changing the level of one neurotransmitter will change others; so however well a drug is targeted towards a particular receptor, it will have a knock-on effect on the whole system. One knock-on effect of many psychiatric drugs is to suppress acetylcholine, and this causes some of the side effects people experience."(emphasis mine)

Here: "The SSRIs are not selective for anything except that they act on all serotonin in the body.
Only 5% of this is in the brain. Five per cent. The other 95% is found throughout the body with large amounts being found in: the digestive system (stomach movement); the cardiovascular system (blood flow); blood cells (clotting); reproductive system (genitals); hormonal system (widespread effects on lots of physiological processes). All of which is acted upon by the drug. All of it."

Here: "
Since we don’t understand the precise mechanism of each neurotransmitter or the true number of all that exist, we also can’t understand how medications, foods, or environmental exposure may affect these chemical messengers. Scientists and researchers must make educated guesses based on what is known, but the plethora of unknown information on these cells equates these theories to trying to playing darts in total darkness. Sometimes the guesses are pretty good; SSRIs for instance are reasonably effective for a lot of people. Other times these theories fail to work, since we’re guessing about what is essentially undiscovered territory, and we have no idea what other effects might be caused by raising or decreasing levels of certain chemicals made by the body."

Are you confused?"
I'm still confused but researchers and physicians still swear antidepressants SSRIs are great for depression - funny that one of the side effects is depression -, headache, back pain and who knows what more.
They have even created a Prozac for dogs.

Friday, January 29, 2010

February 7 - International Day in Memory of SSRI Fatalities

This is Traci Johnson is a 19 years-old healthy volunteer for Cymbalta clinical trial for urinary incontinence in 2003. She hanged herself at Eli-Lylli's clinic in Indianapolis in February, 7, 2004. According to Wikipedia:
"A suicide of 19-year-old Traci Johnson, a healthy volunteer in a duloxetine clinical pharmacology study, was highly publicized. For about a month she had been given high doses of duloxetine, and then she was switched to placebo. Four days after the switch, she hanged herself with her scarf from a shower rod in the bathroom of Lilly Laboratory for Clinical Research.[65][66] The New York Times article mentioned a withdrawal syndrome as a possible reason for this suicide."
I always thought about changing the avatar but whenever I looked at this bright smile it gave me courage to keep going for it is not easy to deal with this subject and most of the friends I met because of this blog that are dealing with psych-drugs harms feel the same. I wish I did not know about it all but I cannot stop trying to raise awareness because these drugs are destroying lives.

Last year I did a post in February in Tracy Johnson's memory and I have already scheduled this year post but today morning I thought that it was not enough.
So I though about dedicating this day to all those people who have their lives changed because of SSRI harm.

I wrote an e-mail to some of my friends and this is the outcome of my idea with their inputs:

February 7 - International Day in Memory of SSRI Fatalities *

SSRI fatalities are those who have died violently due to homicide of suicide induced by SSRIs and now there are newborns that suffer heart malformations or any other teratogenic disturbance.
I would also like to remember people that have their quality of life changed because of the use of SSRI as a teenager.
Those who are not aware of these facts may be asking themselves why is it happening or even if it is true that a drug that has killed during clinical trial can be at the market.
You just got your answer: "market". We are talking about money and corruption is the reason of so many distress in this world.

I will change my picture next 7th February and leave Tracy Johnson in peace. I want to thank her for all these months she was here by my side.

R.I.P. Tracy Johnson

I want to thank my blog friends that helped me and encouraged me to keep going:

Bob Fiddaman at Seroxat Sufferers
Mark p.s. 2 at Psychiatric Survivor
Matthew at It's quite an experience
Susan at If you're going through hell keep going

Needles to say that without them I would not be able to do it.

* This is the Awareness Ribbon for the International Day in Memory of SSRI Fatalities created by Aloisio Congrejo, an italian Second Life artist that was kind enough to do it when I asked him. You can see some of his works at Flickr. Thank you very much Aloisio!

I just did an event at Bloggers Unite and I am waiting if they will accept it.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Do you want an appointment with Dr. Kayoko Kifuji? Here is the address with map and directions!

This is where you can find Dr. Kayoko Kifuji, the psychiatrist that has diagnosed a 2 years-old girl, Rebecca Riley, as bipolar and prescribed her 200 mg Seroquel; 750 mg Depakote and 35 mg cloridine.
I took Depakote for six months and felt terrible lower back pain and could hardly move my neck. I also felt other side effects that I don't remember and it all went away when I stopped it
Seroquel is used as an antipsycothic and now for depression although it doesn't alter serotonine - the culprit of depression according to the chemical imbalance theory that is an hypothesis that was used by the pharmaceutical industries to make people believe they understood the origin of depression.
Seroquel deals with dopamine that is the culprit of psychosis according to other hypothesis.
It makes one sleep almost instantly and is being used as date rape pill as well as of Rohipnol.
Seroquel is also very hard to withdraw to some people but physicians are not aware of this tiny little problem.
But I digress. Rebecca Riley died two years after starting taking this cocktail and her mother, that was also taking Paxil/Seroxat/Aropax is being accused of overdosing Rebecca.
Dr. Kayoko Kifuji is not considered guilty of anything.
If you are near to Boston here is the place you can find her:

Home | Search | My Account
Name:Kayoko Kifuji
Practice Name:
Profession:Psychiatry - Psychiatry
Address Information
©2010 Yahoo! Inc.
Directions to this location.

You can take a look at her photo at the post below so that you don't mistaken her with another doctor. I wonder if it makes a difference changing psychiatrists.But I digress again. Go, go!

Monday, January 25, 2010

Dr. Kayoko Kifuji admits diagnosing Rebecca Riley in an one hour meeting and admits she prescribed higher psych-drug dosage

I have written Dr. Kayoko Kifuji the psychiatrist who diagnosed a two years-old girl as bipolar and it is already beyond comprehension and Rebecca's death after two years taking higher dosages is a crime. This is what is at "The Boston Globe":

Psychiatrist admits she approved higher drug dosage in Riley trial

D January 25, 2010 03:40 PM


Dr. Kayoko Kifuji testified under a grant of immunity during the Carolyn Riley murder trial in the Plymouth County Superior Court in Brockton. (Robert E. Klein for the Boston Globe/Pool Photo)

BROCKTON A Tufts Medical Center child psychiatrist today testified about how she had frequently approved higher dosages of psychotropic drugs for Carolyn Riley's two preschool daughters, often just after the mother admitted to doing it on her own anyway without asking the doctor.

The mother, Carolyn Riley, is on trial for first-degree murder for the death of her 4-year-old daughter Rebecca of an alleged overdose of psychiatric medications in a case that has drawn attention to the use of psychiatric drugs on children and the nation's disability system.

While being questioned by the prosecutor, Dr. Kayoko Kifuji acknowledged that when she first met Rebecca Riley, at age 2, she had initially diagnosed her with having attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder after only a one-hour meeting. She authorized the mother to give one prescription tablet of clonidine, a sedative, each night.

But within a few days, Carolyn Riley acknowledged she was giving the girl two full tablets.

Did she ask for you to authorize the double dose? asked Plymouth First Assistant District Attorney Frank J. Middleton Jr.

No, replied Kifuji, who spoke in quiet, measured tones throughout her testimony.

Kifuji is testifying as a prosecution witness under a grant of immunity, it was disclosed in court today.

Based on the doctor's three hours on the witness stand this morning, Kifuji came off as a clinician who seemed to follow the lead of the 35-year-old Hull mother in treating her children.

Carolyn Riley is charged with first-degree murder in the death of her youngest daughter, 4-year-old Rebecca, and the girl�s father, Michael Riley, also faces the same charges, but is being tried separately.

This 55-year-old doctor has been the most-anticipated witness in this case that has generated nationwide controversy over the use of mood-altering drugs on very young children. Her testimony today was her first public statements in this case.

Prosecutors portray her as operating on the fringe of the medical profession, quick to prescribe
potent drugs for toddlers, and shockingly gullible to what the government says were the schemes of troubled, mercenary parents.

They say Rebecca's parents made up behavioral problems in their children, using this clinician as a way to get "happy medicine" or "sleep medicine" for the youngsters, and to help the struggling family qualify for disability benefits.

Rebecca died of an alleged overdose of psychotropic drugs on Dec. 13, 2006, according to a state autopsy report. The girl�s father, Michael Riley, has also been charged with first degree murder. He has pleaded not guilty and will be tried separately.

Carolyn Riley's defense has argued that the girl died of a rapid-onset pneumonia, and that Carolyn Riley routinely followed the doctor�s orders in dispensing medications to her three children, all of whom were eventually diagnosed with bipolar and hyperactivity disorders, and seen by Kifuji.

The relationship between Kifuji and Carolyn Riley was portrayed today as relatively minimal and business-like, resulting in the psychiatrist exhibiting a high degree of trust in the mother�s account of her children's behavior, as well as a willingness to look past obvious transgressions committed by the mother in her dispensing of medication.

For instance, the two met each other for the first time in April 2003 when Carolyn Riley brought her older daughter, Kaitlynne, then 2, to see Kifuji who was then practicing at a clinic a Bay State Medical Center in Springfield.

After a one hour meeting in her office, the psychiatrist diagnosed Kaitlynne as having bipolar illness and immediately prescribed Depakote based largely on the mother�s depiction of the girl as physically aggressive to her older brother, and the girl saying she sometimes saw monsters and ghosts.

Over the next several months, as the mother reported Kaitlynne having continued problems, including sleep issues, the psychiatrist raised the possibility of adding clonidine. At that time, the mother acknowledged she had already been trying out clonidine on Kaitlynne, having taken some of these prescription pills from a bottle designated for her oldest son, Gerard.

"Did that concern you?" the prosecutor asked.

"Yes." Kifuji replied.

While Kifuji told Carolyn Riley that a parent cannot just introduce new medications without a doctor's approval, the psychiatrist went ahead and added clonidine to Kaitlynne's regimen of prescription pills.

Kifuji, who went through medical school in Toyko before coming to the United States in 1994 to pursue psychiatric training, had faced possible criminal charges after Rebecca died at her parent's bedside on Dec. 13, 2006.

Even if her diagnosis and treatment of Rebecca fell within the standards of care in her field, investigators looked into the extent to which she turned a blind eye to Rebecca's mother alleged disturbing behaviors, such as repeating asserting she needed extra refills or describing extreme aggressive behavior in the child that her preschool teachers and social workers never observed.

But, after a lengthy investigation, a grand jury last summer declined to indict the doctor. After that announcement, Kifuji resumed her clinical practice at Tufts Medical Center, work that she had suspended as part of a voluntary agreement with the state's medical licensing board soon after Rebecca died. Still, however, she faces a medical malpractice lawsuit filed by the estate of Rebecca Riley.

According to a State Police report, Kifuji prescribed three medications for the girl: 750 milligrams a day of Depakote, an anti-seizure drug also used as a mood-stabilizer; 200 milligrams a day of Seroquel, an antipsychotic drug; and .35 milligrams a day of clonidine, a blood pressure drug also used as a sedative.

The autopsy report found that Rebecca died "due to the combined effects" of the clonidine, Depakote, and medications found in cold medicine.

According to a State Police report, Kifuji prescribed three medications for the girl: 750 milligrams a day of Depakote, an anti-seizure drug also used as a mood-stabilizer; 200 milligrams a day of Seroquel, an antipsychotic drug; and .35 milligrams a day of clonidine, a blood pressure drug also used as a sedative.

The autopsy report found that Rebecca died "due to the combined effects" of the clonidine, Depakote, and medications found in cold medicine."
Via Furious Seasons.

I also did a post in July, 1 "Kayoko Kifuji licence to kill again" with a link to a Furious Seasons post by the time Dr. Kayoko Kifuji was not indicted by a Massachusetts grand jury.
I wonder how many children have to die because of dangerous drugs prescriptions. We are talking about a 2 years-old child being given high dosages of drugs that she should never have taken.
What else?
Once again: 2 years-old child taking 200 mg Seroquel; 750 mg Depakote and 35 mg clonidine to spice things!

Saturday, January 16, 2010

We are fighting corruption daily and nobody notices - UN fighting corruption in eastern countries

This is the at the UNPD site:


Corruption is undoubtedly one of the key governance problems of the region. As in much of the rest of the world, corruption in Eastern Europe and the CIS has gone from being a well-known secret to a topic that is widely acknowledged and discussed; however, discussion is most often in generalities, without focusing on realistic solutions. Many countries of the region suffer from high levels of public corruption that frequently undermine efforts at administrative reform and impede the development of governmental capacity to fulfil state responsibilities.

Project: Anti-Corruption Practitioners Network (ACPN)

The Anti-Corruption Practitioners Network (ACPN) was launched by UNDP BRC in cooperation with UNODC in early 2006, few months after the enter into force of the UN Convention Against Corruption (UNCAC).
The ACPN involves in its activities UNDP/UNODC staff from the region, practitioners working in anti-corruption agencies and international experts committed to the fight against public corruption in the Eastern European and the CIS countries. The Network is currently the main tool of the BRC for knowledge management in the field of anti-corruption as well as for the delivery of technical assistance to AC agencies. The ACPN is also a useful source of information and expertise for providing assistance to UNDP country offices implementing AC programming activities.
Principal Networks’ activities are:
1) Facilitation of knowledge sharing among AC Agencies to address specific requests for technical assistance and to update the members about best practices and technical means for fighting corruption and for the implementation of the UNCAC.
2) Maintenance of a database containing: information on the AC institutional and legal frameworks in place in the countries of the region; contact details of AC practitioners and agencies in the region; documents and toolkits useful for the work of AC agencies. Click here to get access to the Database.
3) Capacity development assistance to selected preventive AC agencies in the region. Activities are managed by BRC and implemented in cooperation with UNDP country offices. AC Practitioners and agencies member of the Network provide expertise and assistance for the activities. Click here for more information.
4) Support to programming activity of UNDP country offices in the area of anti-corruption through technical advice and referral of international experts.

All bloggers that are trying to raise awareness on the harms of psych-drugs are fighting corruption and nobody notices it.
I don't know what else can I do and thinking that Obama has received money from the pharmas to his campaign makes me think how hard it is, if not impossible to raise awareness about the extent that the pharmaceutical industry is corrupting politicians, physicians and all the consortium and making people sick instead of improving health.
Nobody seems to care and I didn't see a single phrase at the UNODC or UNDP site about pharmaceutical industry. I would like to know what is the country that is corruption-free. It funny to see that all the countries that are listed as corrupt are far away from the western standard and the measures citizens must take are not related to politicians.
Sad. We keep the fight no matter what.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Haiti Emergence - Doctors Without Borders/MSF need help to keep working

As I admire their work I wrote about Doctors Without Borders last year about their answer to Glaxosmith CEO Andrew WItty, a Harvard Medical School tycoon, that denies that Aids is a neglected disease.
They are at Haiti:

Stay Connected with our Work

Drawing on our emergency medical work around the world, we seek to generate greater awareness of the magnitude and severity of crises that may or may not be reflected in media accounts.

You can use the tools below to make an impact on behalf of MSF's patients by simply sharing our message.

"Trying to catch people's attention to something so far removed from their daily reality which barely impacts them is hard. But if we cover all bases, we can make in-roads into their awareness."
—MSF nurse Fiona Bass


Use this button on your blog or website to let others know how to support our work in Haiti and 60 other countries around the world.

Support Doctors Without Borders in Haiti

Add the button at your blog.


Haiti: MSF Treats 2,000 Patients; Working to Expand Surgical Capacity

© Julie Remy

Surgery needs are huge; more than 300 patients in need of surgery have been tranferred from MSF's Martissant health center to Choscal hospital, a facility in the Cité Soleil district.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Omega 3 for depression - raising serotonin levels is really a new approach?

The "chemical imbalance" theory - that claims that depression is caused by an imbalance of serotonin in the brain - has already been criticized by psychiatrists and researchers but it appears in different healing process like Omega 3 supplements:

"Why Fish Helps Aid the Blues

Serotonin is a neurotransmitter (a chemical messenger in the brain) that is thought to affect one’s moods including depression and anxiety. Studies show that long-chain Omega 3s play a vital part in the brain’s reuptake of serotonin. Mood-elevating drugs work much in the same way, which may be why studies indicate that for individuals who take omega 3 depression is less of an issue or isn’t an issue at all

This is from this site.

I see a huge benefit: Omega 3 is not addictive like antidepressants SSRI/SSNIs and does not promote all the hideous side effects these type or psych-drugs do since only 5% of the serotonin that is reuptake remains in the brain and 95% travels the body easy-rider.
But the theory is the same and it is supposed to be used with an antidepressant.

How Soon Will I See Results?

When taking Omega 3 depression will usually begin to alleviate within a couple of weeks and sooner in many cases. However, if you’re taking other medications for depression it’s important that you don’t stop those medications without consulting your doctor first.
Still at Dr. Omega site.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

FDA helped Eli-Lilly stays impune in Traci Johnson's case - suicide at Eli-Lilly's facilities during Cymbalta clinical trial

This is from The Independent and I want to have it here at this blog because I have Traci Johnson as my avatar, and, in February, 7 it will be seven years without Traci Johnson whose family quickly forgot after receiving money from Eli-Lilly.
I also want to remember that the agency that should be taking care of health doesn't do the job it was supposed to. FDA simply doesn't care about health, period.

Researchers trying to establish the truth about a new drug - now on sale in the UK - are being thwarted by a government agency whose job is to protect the public

By Jeanne Lenzer and Nicholas Pyke

Sunday, 19 June 2005

When the body of a 19-year-old student, Traci Johnson, was found hanging from a shower rod in the laboratories of pharmaceuticals giant Eli Lilly, US officials were quick to announce that the death could not be linked to a new anti-depressant drug she was helping to test.

When the body of a 19-year-old student, Traci Johnson, was found hanging from a shower rod in the laboratories of pharmaceuticals giant Eli Lilly, US officials were quick to announce that the death could not be linked to a new anti-depressant drug she was helping to test.

During her stay at the hotel-cum-clinic in Indiana known as the Lilly Lab, Johnson had been taking part in trials for a secret new formula called Cymbalta, a chemical cousin of Prozac, which the company hoped would guarantee huge profits for years to come.

For the drugs giant, her death on 7 February last year was an "isolated tragedy" that did not prevent it from pressing ahead with the Cymbalta trials. It is now on sale in the US and - under another name - in Europe and the UK.

But for the scientific community it was another warning bell about a class of medicines already under scrutiny for possible ties to suicide. After all, Johnson was not depressed. Far from it. She enrolled in the clinical trial as a healthy volunteer in order to earn money to pay for her college tuition. Anyone with signs of depression was excluded.

Now, medical researchers attempting to establish the truth about Cymbalta are asking why her disturbing and very public suicide is completely absent from the official record, at least as it is released to academics and the public. According to an investigation by The Independent on Sunday, this and at least four other suicides by volunteers have been hidden by the US regulators, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

As the FDA admits, even a young woman's death counts as a commercial secret in the world of pharmaceuticals.

Last week, the IoS reported how vital data on prescription medicines found in millions of British homes has been suppressed by the US authorities, even though the information could potentially save lives. As a result, medical specialists say they have been unable to assess the true risks of big-name products such as painkillers Vioxx (now withdrawn) and Neurofen.

It is hard to overestimate the importance of Cymbalta to Eli Lilly. Prozac, the popular antidepressant that accounted for a quarter of the company's $10bn revenues in 2000, went off-patent in August 2001, causing a bruising financial reaction on Wall Street. In just one day, the company's stock plunged by almost a third.

The replacement was supposed to be Cymbalta, which financial analysts predicted would bring in a whopping $2bn in sales.

Lilly defended its drug, saying that 4,142 depressed patients had taken Cymbalta and the deaths represent a 0.097% suicide rate. Besides, it said, it is the underlying depression - not the drug - that causes sufferers to become suicidal.

With so much at stake, the FDA sent experts to Indianapolis to investigate. When they announced that Cymbalta "couldn't be linked to her death", her family was outraged. According to the Johnson family spokesperson, Pastor Joel Barnaby, FDA officials never spoke to them.

National headlines following the FDA ruling were unequivocal. The Associated Press ran an article entitled, "FDA clears Lilly drug in suicide". And six months after Johnson's death, the FDA approved the drug for the treatment of depressed patients. Cymbalta, which has the chemical name duloxetine, is also sold for "stress urinary incontinence" in Europe and the UK under the trade name Yentreve.

Beginning in January, the IoS started filing US Freedom of Information Act requests for all safety data relating to the drug's use. The FDA responded with its Adverse Events Reporting System (Aers) database, which shows 13 suicides reported among patients taking duloxetine and about 41 deaths. Five suicides are notably absent from the information supplied by the FDA; that of Johnson and the four patients who committed suicide while enrolled in clinical trials of Cymbalta.

The FDA has a good reason not to release any information about these five patients: they don't have to. In fact, it's against the law, according to Dr Robert Temple, its director of medical policy. In an exclusive interview with the IoS, he said that some of the data filed by Lilly is considered commercially protected information.

When asked whether the FDA would release all the data from anti-depressant trials analysed by the FDA to a researcher, Dr Temple said his belief is that "the answer is clearly no". That, he said, is something "only Congress can change".

Dr David Graham, associate safety director at the FDA, agreed with Dr Temple that it would take action by Congress to make data available that are currently considered trade secrets. "Most of us think of trade secrets as a manufacturing process or the names of certain ingredients, but here, deaths are being considered trade secrets."

Following revelations that drug companies were not publishing negative data, Eli Lilly won praise for its announcement that it would disclose all clinically relevant trial data on its website. The company has stated that it will disclose "all medical research results that are significant to patients, health care providers or payer - whether favourable or unfavourable to a Lilly product".

The company posts clinical trials results on its freely available clinical trials website (www.lillytrials.com). Data from seven trials of duloxetine are posted, but these show a total of two deaths associated with duloxetine, and no reported suicides. Lilly says that it is "on track" to post all clinical data by 1 July 2005.

A spokesman for Eli Lilly, David Shaffer, said some of the studies are still in progress and that the suicides would be reported when the studies are completed, the data is reviewed and, if applicable, they have been published in a peer-reviewed scientific journal. Other suicides occurred in depression studies "run by another company". Two cases from a completed study will be posted by 1 July, he said.

Dr Jerome Hoffman, professor of medicine and emergency medicine at the University of California at Los Angeles said, "Like Dr Temple, I don't know whether this one young woman's death was related to this drug, nor do I believe that it's possible for anyone to determine that with certainty."

But he said it was "unconscionable" that "the FDA appears to be prevented by law from carrying out what we all surely believe is its primary role in this process, which is to safeguard the interests of the public.

"The fact that the law not only does not make this a requirement - of the drug company itself, no less of the FDA - but that it actually makes it forbidden, clearly turns the function of this government agency on its head: from protector of the public health, to protector of industry."

Monday, January 04, 2010

Obama follows Bush's steps naming the countries of the axis of evil

I think that it's not that off-topic talking about Obama's foreign policy. This is a mental health advocate blog but Obama is far from doing any change in American health system.
As a citizen concerned with the world I am amazed with the news today.
Let's just take a look at this excerpt from The Haaretz
07/04/2009 by Zvi Bar'el

What Obama promised:
"The repairing of relations with Turkey following the 2003 U.S.-led invasion of Iraq - when Turkey refused to allow American forces to use its territory as a base for launching attacks - also presents an opportunity to fix America's broken image in the Arab and Islamic world. It appears that the era of dividing states along "moderate and "extreme" lines and between good Islam and "the axis of evil" is over.

According to Obama, America's strategic relations with Islamic states can not solely rely on joint opposition to Al-Qaida, but must also be supported by other shared interests and mutual respect. This is, perhaps, the most significant strategic change that Obama has offered as part of his solution to the deterioration of the U.S. position in the region during the Bush era. Obama deliberately left the section about Muslim states in his speech until the end so that it would be remembered."

Wrong guess! President Barach Obama has announced the list of high risks countries:
"All travellers flying into the US from Pakistan, Afghanistan, Nigeria, Yemen, Saudi Arabia and nine other countries considered high risk will be patted down and have carry-on luggage searched under new security procedures starting Monday.
In addition, all international passengers will see enhanced random screening, which may include pat-downs, explosive detection testing (swabbing of luggage) or body scans, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA)announced Sunday.

The new procedures follow the botched Christmas Day attempt to blow up a Detroit-bound US airliner blamed on a Nigerian man who US officials believe was trained by al-Qaida in Yemen. Pakistan's border with Afghanistan is also considered a key battleground in the US-led battle against al-Qaida and the Taliban.(emphasis mine)

Pakistan, Afghanistan, Algeria, Iraq, Lebanon, Libya, Nigeria, Saudi Arabia, Somalia and Yemen are on the list as "other countries of interest". Cuba, Iran, Sudan and Syria are listed because they have long been identified as "state sponsors of terrorism" by the State Department.

This list was developed between Homeland Security and the State Department using the latest intelligence, NBC cited a senior federal official as saying.

"The new directive includes long-term, sustainable security measures developed in consultation with law enforcement officials and our domestic and international partners," the TSA said in a statement.

"TSA is mandating that every individual flying into the US from anywhere in the world travelling from or through nations that are state sponsors of terrorism or other countries of interest will be required to go through enhanced screening," it added.

"The directive also increases the use of enhanced screening technologies and mandates threat-based and random screening for passengers on US bound international flights."

The TSA said the ability to enforce the new security measures is the "rcesult of extraordinary ooperation from our global aviation partners." Effective aviation security "must begin beyond our borders," it added.""(emphasis mine)
Maybe I am too pessimist or alarmist or... I am wrong. I'm sure there is a good reason for that.
A good news today:
HIV' positive foreigners can enter US. There are countries that still ban or deport who are HIV positive and the countries at Obama's axis of evil list are among them but since last Friday US no longer discriminate HIV positive people. Good! This is a good news and it should not even had to be announced because US should never have had such a discriminatory law.
It is a disease not a moral certificate.

Saturday, January 02, 2010

I have to stay away from the computer due to back pain and that is why I am not answering e-mails or visiting blogs

Yep! I have to avoid the computer as much as I can and do exercises and walk. The bright side is that I am socializing and taking care of food and everything. If I don't take care now I will turn into a bended lady and I don't want it to happens. I have a disc-hernia at the L5 and now I'm also having problems in my shoulders. To make things more interesting my ankles started to swell a little and I went to my GP that made an blood exam that showed that I have to go to a specialist of rheumatism because I might have any problem.
I will spend this month taking care of these ailments and also doing funny and pleasant things.
Lemonade! It's very hot and it's good to have lemonade in summer. :)