Sacred Fire of Liberty, Jonathan Emord, Trump slashes bureaucracy, Obama immigration reminder, ACLU loses credibility, Draining the swamp, Alzheimer’s vaccine coming, Parkinson’s drug disaster, Starbucks tiny violin, Canada cannabis, Prohibition nullification, Chris Pratt wisdom, Fishy Canadian professors and MORE!

June 21, 2018 7-9PM ET

Thursday on The Robert Scott Bell Show:

Sacred Fire of Liberty!

It’s that time of the week where we get to explore the political healing that this country needs so desperately! Jonathan Emord is here to help us dissect the latest political news that’s fit to print:

Trump Administration Cuts National Guidelines Clearinghouse In a bold move, the Trump administration has defunded the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality’s (AHRQ) National Guidelines Clearinghouse (NGC). Effective July 16, the clearinghouse will no longer house the repository of “guidelines” that are often used to direct physicians on the care of their patients. Citizens’ Council for Health Freedom (CCHF) is applauding the shutdown of this clearinghouse, which has given hospitals and health plans government-backed tools to decide what treatments they will make available or cover. “The end of this federal repository of treatment protocols is not only a monetary savings for the country, but also keeps the government officials from using its power and influence to direct the practice of medicine,” said CCHF president and co-founder Twila Brase. “The decision to defund this clearinghouse takes away one element of control that can be imposed by electronic health records (EHRs). Doctors are often tracked by their adherence to these and other standardized treatment protocols as a way to measure the so-called ‘quality’ of their practice and their treatment decisions—which is at the core of the controversial ‘evidence-based medicine’ philosophy. They experience penalties for ‘going outside the lines’ despite making the best decisions for their patients. Therefore, the end of this taxpayer-funded clearinghouse is good for patients and doctors.”

TRUMP CALLS OUT OBAMA FOR ‘INHUMANE’ TREATMENT OF MIGRANT KIDS President Donald Trump criticized former President Barack Obama for his own administration’s policy of detaining and housing illegal immigrant children from Central America, in a cabinet meeting Thursday. “In 2014, in the Obama Administration they have pictures so bad they had a judge that said it was inhumane the way they were treating children. Take a look at some of the court rulings against the Obama Administration. They talked about the inhumane treatment,” Trump said, adding “all over the place. Inhumane treatment. They were treating them terribly.” Photos have once again resurfaced of the Obama administration’s detention facilities for unaccompanied minors during the central american migrant crisis of 2014. Tens of thousands of children from central America flooded the U.S.-Mexico border and were often kept in fenced off conditions wrapped in foil blankets. Trump has been roundly criticized for the same conditions as his administration prosecuted families who illegally crossed the border, rather than release them into the interior of the country.

Leaked Internal Memo Reveals the ACLU Is Wavering on Free Speech The American Civil Liberties Union will weigh its interest in protecting the First Amendment against its other commitments to social justice, racial equality, and women’s rights, given the possibility that offensive speech might undermine ACLU goals. “Our defense of speech may have a greater or lesser harmful impact on the equality and justice work to which we are also committed,” wrote ACLU staffers in a confidential memoobtained by former board member Wendy Kaminer. It’s hard to see this as anything other than a cowardly retreat from a full-throated defense of the First Amendment. Moving forward, when deciding whether to take a free speech case, the organization will consider “factors such as the (present and historical) context of the proposed speech; the potential effect on marginalized communities; the extent to which the speech may assist in advancing the goals of white supremacists or others whose views are contrary to our values; and the structural and power inequalities in the community in which the speech will occur.”

White House plans merging of education and labor departments: OMB report The White House on Thursday released its plan to merge the Departments of Education and Labor into a single Cabinet agency, moving ahead on President Trump’s “drain the swamp agenda” as his administration looks to do away with a long list of overlapping regulations and department functions. The wide-ranging reorganization plan  was formally unveiled during the president’s cabinet meeting on Thursday by Director of the Office of Management and Budget Mick Mulvaney. It also includes moving the federal food stamp program to the Department of Health and Human Services and restructuring the Postal Service, among other changes. “It has been almost 100 years since somebody reorganized the government on this scale,” Mulvaney said. “No one has even tried on this scale and, more importantly, nobody has followed through with this.” The proposal is the result of a presidential order signed by Trump in March 2017 calling for a review of the federal government aimed at identifying redundancies and streamlining agencies. It’s the latest in a long line of federal government overhaul proposals announced by administrations from both parties.

Hour 2 – Neurological Disease Update!

New evidence that viruses may play a role in Alzheimer’s Viruses that sneak into the brain just might play a role in Alzheimer’s, scientists reported Thursday in a provocative study that promises to re-ignite some long-debated theories about what triggers the mind-robbing disease. The findings don’t prove viruses cause Alzheimer’s, nor do they suggest it’s contagious. But a team led by researchers at New York’s Mount Sinai Health System found that certain viruses — including two extremely common herpes viruses — affect the behavior of genes involved in Alzheimer’s. The idea that infections earlier in life might somehow set the stage for Alzheimer’s decades later has simmered at the edge of mainstream medicine for years. It’s been overshadowed by the prevailing theory that Alzheimer’s stems from sticky plaques that clog the brain. Thursday’s study has even some specialists who never embraced the infection connection saying it’s time for a closer look, especially as attempts to block those so-called beta-amyloid plaques have failed.

Parkinson’s meds tied to higher rate of gambling, sex addiction than thought Compulsive gambling. Shopping until your money has run out. Eating until you’ve grown obese. Relentless sexual risk-taking. Medications that restore normal movement in patients with Parkinson’s disease can unlock their inner demons more often than thought, a new study finds. It’s long been known that the drugs can lead to impulse-control issues in some patients, said Dr. Michael Okun, national medical director for the Parkinson’s Foundation. But this latest research shows that more than half of the people taking dopamine agonists for Parkinson’s could eventually develop an impulse-control disorder. “These investigators followed patients for five years, and their results revealed a much higher than expected incidence of impulse-control disorders,” Okun said.

Those Pesky Healthy People!

Starbucks blames ‘health and wellness’ for sagging Frappuccino sales Frappuccino sales are struggling, and concerns about how much sugar the slushy drinks contain may be among the reasons. Starbucks says sales from the drinks that mix coffee, ice, syrup and milk are down 3 percent from a year ago, and is blaming the “health and wellness” trend for the dip. “These are oftentimes more indulgent beverages — higher in sugar, higher in calories,” Starbucks CEO Kevin Johnson said during a presentation to investors Tuesday. Not everyone thinks Americans are suddenly waking up to how much sugar is in a Frappuccino. Peter Saleh, restaurant analyst for BTIG, notes that interest in healthy eating isn’t new: “It’s not something that popped up out of nowhere.”

Cannabis Update!

Canada becomes second nation in the world to legalize marijuana Recreational marijuana use will soon be legal in Canada after the Senate passed a “historic” bill on Tuesday with a vote of 52-29. Canada is only the second country in the world — and the first G7 nation — to implement legislation to permit a nationwide marijuana market. In the neighboring US, nine states and the District of Columbia now allow for recreational marijuana use, and 30 allow for medical use. Bill C-45, otherwise known as the Cannabis Act, stems from a campaign pledge of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to keep marijuana away from underage users and reduce related crime. The act to legalize the recreational use of weed was first introduced on April 13, 2017, and was later passed at the House of Commons in November. The Senate passage of the bill was the final hurdle in the process. Uruguay was the first country to legalize marijuana’s production, sale and consumption in December 2013. Although the Canadian government had initially stated its intent to implement by July 2018, provinces and territories, who will be responsible for drafting their own rules for marijuana sales, have advised that they would need eight to 12 weeks after the Senate approval to transition to the new framework. The government is expected to choose a date in early or mid September.

Can States or Citizens ‘Nullify’ Federal Cannabis Prohibition? For much of the twentieth century, “nullification” was something of a dirty word in American politics because of its association with the defenses of slavery and Jim Crow. However, it has also been raised in support of basic human freedoms. In short, nullification is the idea that a state has the right to invalidate, or nullify, any federal law that the state considers to be unconstitutional. Today, some activists are arguing that states and people can declare federal cannabis prohibition nullified within their borders — though it might not be that simple. The first explicit invocation of nullification was in the Virginia and Kentucky Resolutions of 1798, drafted by James Madison and Thomas Jefferson, respectively. These resolutions were a rejection of truly draconian federal laws on “state sovereignty” grounds. The laws in question in 1798 were the Alien & Sedition Acts, signed by President John Adams to clamp down on the populist opposition to his Federalist party. There was also a big element of xenophobia at work in the Alien & Sedition Acts — especially aimed at the revolutionary French, who the Federalist Party despised. In clear echoes of contemporary controversies, the Alien & Sedition Acts raised barriers to immigrant citizenship, authorized the president to imprison or deport aliens considered “dangerous to the peace and safety of the United States” and restricted speech critical of the government. On the other hand, Jefferson and Madison argued that states had the power to “nullify” oppressive federal laws.

In Case You Missed It

MTV Movie & TV Awards: Chris Pratt speech about God’s love, prayer Actor Chris Pratt has some biblical — and humorous — words of advice for the next generation. The “Jurassic World” star put his faith on full view when he accepted the “Generation Award” at Monday night’s MTV Movie & TV Awards and imparted his nine essential life rules. “I accept the responsibility as your elder, so listen up,” Pratt said Number one? “Breathe,” Pratt said. “If you don’t, you’ll suffocate.” Two: “You have a soul. Be careful with it.” And three, in Pratt’s words, “Don’t be a turd.” He also quipped a few more less-serious lessons, like how to best use the bathroom at a party and how to give a dog medicine, before getting to his deeper, more powerful words of wisdom. Rules six and eight seemed to strike the biggest chord on social media. “God is real. God loves you. God wants the best for you. Believe that. I do,” Pratt said. “Learn to pray. It’s easy and it’s so good for your soul.” Pratt, 38, then wrapped up his speech with his last rule: “Nobody is perfect.”

Your WTF Story Of The Day

Canadian Professors Write About ‘Intimacy of Human-Fish Relations’ Three gender studies professors at the Memorial University of Newfoundland in Canada penned an academic piece this month about the “intimacy of human-fish relations.” Professors Sonja Boon, Lesley Butler, and Daze Jeffries of the Memorial University of Newfoundland in Canada published a strange academic piece this month about the allegedly intimate relationship between humans and fish. This is how they describe their work: What does it mean to love fish? This chapter, a meditation on love, considers the space of encounter between the human and the more than-human. Drawing on the work of Elspeth Probyn, Karin Amimoto Ingersoll, Sara Ahmed, Luce Irigaray, Eve Tuck and C. Ree, it examines the profoundly embodied intimacy of human-fish relations, developing the idea of love through the lens of grief, mourning, loss, and haunting.

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