Don’t You Take Anything That Big Pharma Isn’t Making Money On. Next they will be putting people into jail for using homeopathic medications.

(Chamille White/

FDA Is Taking a More Aggressive Stance Toward Homeopathic Drugs

“Just silly from a scientific point of view.”
19 DEC 2017

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on Monday proposed a tougher enforcement policy toward homeopathic drugs, saying it would target products posing the greatest safety risks, including those containing potentially harmful ingredients or being marketed for cancer, heart disease and opioid and alcohol addictions.

Homeopathy is based on an 18th-century idea that substances that cause disease symptoms can, in very small doses, cure the same symptoms.

Modern medicine, backed up by numerous studies, has disproved the central tenets of homeopathy and shown that the products are worthless at best and harmful at worst.

Under US law, homeopathic drugs are required to meet the same approval rules as other drugs. But under a policy adopted in 1988, the agency has used “enforcement discretion” to allow the items to be manufactured and distributed without FDA approval.

Agency officials don’t plan to begin requiring that homeopathic products get approval – officials say that would be impractical – but they are signalling stepped-up scrutiny for items deemed a possible health threat.

Examples of high-risk products include ones that are administered by injection, are intended for vulnerable populations like children or the elderly, or are marketed for serious diseases, the agency said.

The FDA’s proposed approach, outlined in a draft guidance that will be open for public for 90 days, comes more than a year after homeopathic teething tablets and gels containing belladonna were linked to 400 injuries and the deaths of 10 children.

An FDA lab analysis later confirmed that some of the products “contained elevated and inconsistent levels of belladonna”, a toxic substance, the agency said.

Once a niche field, homeopathy has grown into to a US$3 billion industry that peddles treatments for everything from cancer to colds, FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb noted in a statement.

“In many cases, people may be placing their trust and money in therapies that may bring little or no benefit in combating serious ailments, or worse – that may cause significant and even irreparable harm” because of poor manufacturing quality or unsafe ingredients, he said.

Still, he said, the agency wants to balance its safety concerns with the desires of consumers who want to continue using the products.

Under its planned approach, many products won’t be considered high risk and will remain available to consumers, Janet Woodcock, director of the FDA’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research, told reporters during a teleconference.

But she said, the agency would “go after” products that cause – or might cause – “overt harm”.

The National Center for Homeopathy, which advocates for homeopathy and is based in Mount Laurel, NJ, says on its website that “homeopathy is a safe, gentle, and natural system of healing that works with your body to relieve symptoms, restore itself, and improve your overall health.”

Steven Salzberg, a biomedical engineer at Johns Hopkins University who in the past has criticised the FDA for not taking action against homeopathy, said it was “terrific” that the agency now plans to try to rein in the industry.

He cautioned that product makers are likely to “hit back hard with lots of spurious claims in an effort to confuse consumers and to protect their profits.”

Salzberg added that homeopathic products’ packaging suggests that the items “cure all sorts of conditions – pain, colds, asthma, indigestion, arthritis, you name it – and yet there’s not a whit of evidence” that they cure anything.

The homeopathy field, he said, is “just silly from a scientific point of view, more like a religious belief than a scientific belief.”

In July, Britain’s National Health System announced plans to stop doctors from prescribing homeopathic drugs. Simon Stevens, the system’s chief executive, described homeopathy as “at best a placebo and a misuse of scarce NHS funds”.

The move came years after the House of Commons called on the government health service to stop paying for homeopathic prescriptions, saying, “To maintain patient trust, choice and safety, the Government should not endorse the use of placebo treatments, including homeopathy.”

In April 2015, the FDA held public hearings on the way it regulates homeopathic products as part of an effort to get public input on its enforcement polices.

The agency said Monday that as a result of the hearing and 9,000 comments submitted by the public, the FDA had decided to propose a new “comprehensive, risk-based enforcement approach to drug products labelled as homeopathic and marketed without FDA approval.”

Over the past several years, the FDA has issued warnings about other homeopathic drug products, including zinc-containing intranasal products that may cause a loss of sense of smell; certain homeopathic asthma products that have not been effective in treating asthma and other products that contain strychnine, a poison used to kill rodents.

2017 © The Washington Post

This article was originally published by The Washington Post.


Nuclear waste “piling up at bottom” — Lava-like material has spread all over… “hanging like icicles” — Mystery orange substance seen

Expert: Melted fuel found at Fukushima — Corium up to 6 feet thick below reactor — Nuclear waste “piling up at bottom” — Lava-like material has spread all over… “hanging like icicles” — Mystery orange substance seen (VIDEO)

Published: July 24th, 2017 at 3:52 pm ET


Kyodo, Jul 22, 2017 (emphasis added): In big step forward, Tepco finds melted fuel at bottom of reactor 3 in Fukushima… The debris was clearly identifiable to at least one nuclear expert. “The images that appear to be melted fuel debris match those found in the (1986) Chernobyl crisis,” said Tadashi Narabayashi, a specially appointed professor of nuclear engineering working at Hokkaido University. “It’s definitely fuel debris… It’s an epoch-making event.”

New York Daily News, Jul 22, 2017: Underwater robot captures images of melted fuel at wrecked Fukushima nuclear plant — An underwater robot captured photos of 3-foot thick lumps of melted nuclear fuel covering the floor

Sky News, Jul 24, 2017: Melted nuclear fuel spotted in Fukushima reactor — The radioactive material has been spotted and pictured by a submersible robot…

CNN, Jul 24, 2017: [The robot] has revealed appears to be stalactites of melted nuclear fuel, [Tepco] said… the robot sent back 16 hours worth of images of massive, lava-like fuel deposits

AP, Jul 23, 2017: [Images] showed massive deposits believed to be melted nuclear fuel covering the floor

Asahi Shimbun, Jul 23, 2017: Melted nuke fuel images show struggle facing Fukushima plant — Images captured on July 22 of solidified nuclear fuel debris at the bottom of a containment vessel of the crippled Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant show the enormity of decommissioning of the facility… [TEPCO] also discovered that the nuclear fuel debris has spread throughout the containment vessel.

AP, Jul 22, 2017: [TEPCO] said the robot found large amounts of lava-like debris apparently containing fuel that had flowed out of the core… TEPCO spokesman Takahiro Kimoto said it was the first time a robot camera has captured what is believed to be the melted fuel. “That debris has apparently fallen from somewhere higher above. We believe it is highly likely to be melted fuel or something mixed with it,” Kimoto said…

Kyodo, Jul 23, 2017: The robot was sent closer to the bottom of the reactor on Saturday and found possible fuel debris scattered in a wide area.

Japan Times, Jul 21, 2017: Fukushima robot finds potential fuel debris hanging like icicles in reactor 3… The objects spotted this time look like icicles… Tepco is pinning its efforts on technology not yet invented to get the melted fuel out of the reactors.

Reuters, Jul 21, 2017: Tepco detected black-colored material that dangled like icicles that could be nuclear debris near the bottom of the reactor’s pressure vessel that contained the fuel rods, the report said, citing unnamed sources.

Bloomberg, Jul 21, 2017: New images show what is likely to be melted nuclear fuel hanging from inside one of Japan’s wrecked Fukushima reactors… [Tepco] released images on Friday showing a hardened black, grey and orange substance

Financial Times, Jul 24, 2017: [Kimoto] was reluctant to speculate on the nature of seemingly corroded orange patches in the images.

NHK, Jul 23, 2017: [TEPCO] says Saturday’s probe found lumps that are highly likely to be fuel debris piling up at the bottom of the containment vessel… The deposits are estimated to be one to two meters thick. Images released on Saturday show black, rock-like lumps and what appear to be pebbles and sand accumulating at the bottom.

ENENews: “Nuclear Engineer: My biggest concern is Fukushima plant will collapse”

Nuclear Engineer: My biggest concern is Fukushima plant will collapse… Concrete under reactors is being “eaten away”… “There’s ongoing chemical attacks” — Containment structures are tilting, in jeopardy of falling over (AUDIO)
Published: March 17th, 2017 at 6:19 am ET
By ENENews

KGO 810 AM, Feb 9, 2017 (at 9:15 in):
Pat Thurston, host (emphasis added): “There’s a story that’s going around the internet, Snopes says there’s nothing to verify that this is true — I guess Tepco is denying it — but there’s a story going around that the containment structure is in jeopardy — its tilting — it’s in jeopardy of falling over, so we’ll talk about that too — if that is even a possibility. Were that to happen, what would that mean?… First, to the issue of the potential for a collapse of the building — for the building to topple over — for it to somehow to collapse. Is that a thing? Can that happen?”

Arnie Gundersen, nuclear engineer: “Yeah, it can happen — and that’s my biggest concern. Tepco is building a wall along the ocean… it’s trapping all this groundwater onsite, and essentially making the ground mushy… There’s already significant damage [to the reactor buildings] — the entire coast of Japan dropped three feet during that earthquake and never rebounded… But the Fukushima site didn’t fall straight, it fell at an angle, it’s about a two inch incline across the site now. So the buildings are in mushy ground and they’re not quite straight. The other part is that there’s a toxic brew of radioactive chemicals inside there, but there’s also just chemicals – they’re eating away at the concrete and they’re eating away at the steel. It’s a nasty chemical broth inside these plants. My fear is that if there’s a Richter 7 quake, not the Richter 9 that happened 6 years ago, if there’s a Richter 7 quake on that site it could breach those containments… The horse is out of the barn at that point… (discussion continues at 32:00 in) On toppling over… probably half the concrete inside the containment that was originally there has been eaten away by the hot radioactive fuel — and there’s ongoing chemical attacks — so I really think the concrete under the containment is pretty darn punky [“resembling punk in being soft or rotted”] right now, and is getting punkier as time goes on.”

Jersey Evening Post, Feb 25, 2017 (emphasis added): Radioactive cloud could be heading our way

Officials warn mysterious radioactive cloud is spreading — Authorities ‘baffled’ over release… “Could indicate leak from nuclear plant” — Particles “very radioactive”
By ENENews, on February 25th, 2017

Published: February 25th, 2017 at 5:01 pm ET
By ENENews

Jersey Evening Post, Feb 25, 2017 (emphasis added): Radioactive cloud could be heading our way — A CLOUD of mysterious radioactive particles floating across Europe… could enter Jersey airspace, Environmental Health have said… scientists have yet to work out where the radiation comes from… Caroline Maffia, assistant director of Environmental Health in Jersey, said the department was aware of the situation but 24-hour-a-day air monitors placed across the Island had not detected anything yet. CAPTION: ‘We are not picking up anything at this moment. We are slightly out of the way of where it seems to be going but depending on wind direction we could detect something here,’ said Ms Maffia.

Wakefield Express, Feb 24, 2017: Mysterious radioactive cloud moves towards UK… The spike has sparked speculation that Russian president Vladimir Putin is testing nuclear weapons… However, the CTBTO (Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organisation) ruled out a nuclear test had recently taken place… It’s possible that the particles could have come from an incident at a nuclear reactor. The compounds may also have also come from an Iodine plant. Iodine-131 has a very short half life of just eight days, making it very radioactive…

Euronews, Feb 23, 2017: Europe baffled by “recent release” of radioactive Iodine-131… France’s IRSN stresses the amounts of radiation detected pose no health threats, but says its “detection is proof of a rather recent release”… Iodine-131, as described by the IRSN, is of anthropogenic origins – meaning an environmental pollutant originating from human activity… The mysterious origin of the radioactive element has baffled authorities, some of whom claim its presence could indicate either a secret Russian nuclear missile test launch, or a leak from a nuclear power plant. Iodine-131 has historical links to United States and Soviet nuclear tests… It has also been found among the radioactive contamination following Japan’s Fukushima reactor meltdown… The element is also commonly used in medicine… leading to speculation of a yet unidentified, or reported, leak at a pharmaceutical plant.

See also: ‘Mystery’: Radiation spikes being detected in many countries — US military secretly deploys ‘nuclear sniffer’ aircraft — Radioactivity levels quadrupled — Officials: Iodine-131 is “proof of rather recent release… the origin of which is still unknown”

China warns nationals visiting Japan over high radiation levels in Fukushima

China warns nationals visiting Japan over high radiation levels in Fukushima

China warns nationals visiting Japan over high radiation levels in Fukushima

The Chinese Embassy in Japan on Sunday issued an alert to its nationals who have plans to travel in Japan, reminding them of the high-level radiation inside a damaged reactor of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant.

Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO), the facility’s operator, announced last week that the radiation levels detected inside the plant’s No. 2 reactor had reached 650 Sieverts per hour, even higher than the previous record of 530 Sieverts per hour in January.

Even with a 30 percent margin of error, the reading is described by many experts as “unimaginable.” It is much higher than the 73 Sieverts an hour, which was detected in 2012, one year after the nuclear plant’s collapse. Under such exposure, a person would only be able to survive a few minutes at most.

The TEPCO on Thursday sent a remotely controlled robot into the reactor, equipped with a camera that is designed to withstand up to 1,000 Sieverts of cumulative exposure. The robot was pulled out after it broke down only two hours into the probe.

The company is planning to send better robots to conduct more detailed probes. However, it insists that radiation has not leaked outside the reactor.

Last week, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Lu Kang said China has issued safety alerts to its nationals over the high-level radiation. He added that China hopes that the Japanese government could clarify how they are going to thoroughly eliminate the impact caused by the nuclear accident.

Six years have now passed after three reactors at Fukushima’s nuclear power plant were damaged by a devastating 9.0-magnitude earthquake and a subsequent tsunami on March 11, 2011. After the accident, the local government ordered residents living within 30-kilometer radius around the Fukushima nuclear plant to evacuate.

Thought that you could forget about Fukushima? WRONG!

ALERT: Collapse imminent at Fukushima — TV: Officials find large section under reactor is “unstable… about to collapse” — “Bad, bad news… Time to reconsider that trip to the east coast of Japan” (VIDEOS)
By ENENews, on February 3rd, 2017

Published: February 3rd, 2017 at 9:41 pm ET
By ENENews

NHK World, Feb 3, 2017 (emphasis added): The operator of the crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant is examining if it can go ahead with a plan to deploy a robot into one of the damaged reactors at the facility… An analysis of the images found that the radiation level inside the vessel was up to 530 sieverts per hour. Officials speculate that fuel debris–a mixture of nuclear fuel and melted parts of the reactor’s facility–may be emitting strong radiation inside the vessel… Last week’s probe found that part of a metal grating just beneath the reactor was missing. The robot was supposed to move around on the grating. The image analysis also found that an around one square-meter section near the missing segment is about to collapse.

NHK World transcript, Feb 3, 2017: “[Tepco] is facing more setbacks. Tepco has found unstable grating near a rector that will make it difficult to conduct further surveillance to help it decommission the plant… They found a section the size of a square meter is about to collapse. They had already found holes in other sections… A nuclear power expert suggests that will make it difficult for workers to locate the fuel.”

NHK World transcript, Feb 3, 2017 (at 1:30 in): “Engineers were able to get a glimpse inside Reactor No. 2… They found that a section one meter square is about to collapse. They had already found holes in other sections.”

Asahi, Feb 3, 2017: TEPCO said it will consider a different route for the robot… Fumiya Tanabe, an expert on nuclear safety… said the findings show that both the preparation for and the actual decommissioning process at the plant will likely prove much more difficult than expected. “We have few clues on the exact locations, the sizes and the shapes of the nuclear fuel debris,” he said. “The planned investigation by the robot needs a rethink. Work to decommission the plant will require even more time.”

CNET, Feb 3, 2017: High radiation levels at Fukushima reactor is bad, bad news — Time to reconsider that trip to the east coast of Japan. A containment vessel at the destroyed Fukushima No. 1 power plant has reached off-the-chart radiation levels, reported the Japan Times… Experts believe that escaped melted fuel can account for the spiked reading.

Watch NHKs’s broadcast here: #1 | #2

From Health Ranger: Spying Toys

Consumer watchdogs say popular toys are secretly spying on your children

Image: Consumer watchdogs say popular toys are secretly spying on your children

(NaturalNews) The Information and Technology Age is exciting for all the helpful changes it has delivered to consumers to make our lives much easier. But with it has come something terrible: The loss of privacy and the ability for Big Brother to keep an eye on all of us 24/7/365—and often in sinister ways.

Consumer watchdog groups say that increasingly sophisticated children’s toys come with the dual ability to spy on families, in essence. As CNN reports, there are a number of children’s dolls that have such capability.

The groups say that two items manufactured by Genesis Toys record conversations, further claiming that the recordings then are uploaded to Nuance Communications, a voice technology company that has as some of its clients the U.S. military, intelligence agencies and law enforcement.

The consumer watchdogs—the Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC); the Campaign for a Commercial Free Childhood; the Center for Digital Democracy; and the Consumers Union—have filed a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission in reference to two toys, the My Friend Cayla doll and the i-Que robot. The groups say that the “toys subject young children to ongoing surveillance” while violating privacy and consumer protection statutes.

The complaint adds: “Both Genesis Toys and Nuance Communications unfairly and deceptively collect, use, and disclose audio files of children’s voices without providing adequate notice or obtaining verified parental consent.”

The potential for such devices to be misused is huge

CNN reported further that the two toys are connected to the Internet and allow children to talk to and interact with them. When a child asks one of the toys a question, his or her words are recorded and then converted into text so that answers can be obtained from Google, Wikipedia and Weather Underground. Then those voice recordings are summarily uploaded to Nuance, which is a voice recognition technology.

EPIC and the other consumer groups also state that Nuance then uses the recordings it surreptitiously obtains in order to improve products that it then sells to the Pentagon, the U.S. government and law enforcement agencies. One specific product—Nuance Identifier—works like voice recognition, helping security and intelligence officials search a database of millions of recordings so they can identify criminals by their voices.

The company’s VP of corporate marketing and communications, Richard Mack, told CNN that his firm does not use or sell the voice data collected for any marketing or advertising purposes—as if that is what matters most to unsuspecting parents.

He added that he had not yet received any inquiry from the FTC but that the company would cooperate and respond should that happen.

Toys certainly are not the only products being connected to the “Internet of things” that have privacy advocates worried.

24/7 privacy abuse

As Natural News has reported, consumer groups have also expressed concern over devices like Amazon’s “Echo,” which again is always online and is always listening for the sound of the owner’s voice. Like the dolls, Echo also uses voice recognition to invade privacy, and EPIC, among others, has also been opposed to the devices because they can be so readily misused.

“We are on the trajectory of a future filled with voice-assisted apps and voice-assisted devices,” Forrester Research analyst Fatemeh Khatibloo told the AP. “This is going to require finding the fine balance between creating a really great user experience and something that’s creepy.”

Such devices—toys, ‘household products’ like Echo, and even our “Internet of Things” appliances—can all be secretly tasked by spy agencies, law enforcement or just hackers in order to eavesdrop on our conversations. Besides a blatant violation of the Constitution’s Fourth Amendment privacy protections, our inner most thoughts, secrets, passwords and other closely-held information will be at constant risk of being exposed and/or stolen.

And in the case of the two dolls, that would include abusing the privacy of our children.