Monthly Archives: March 2022

LBN Examiner 03/13/2022

COMMON PAIN RELIEVERS CAN WEAKEN IMMUNE SYSTEM’S DEFENSE AGAINST INFECTIOUS DISEASES:

Virtually every medicine is known to cause at least a few unintended side effects, but have you ever wondered how meds like aspirin or opioids may be affecting your immune system? Scientists from the University of Sydney investigated immune responses linked to acetaminophen (Tylenol), non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) like ibuprofen, and opioid analgesics with a specific focus on infectious diseases. The findings were mixed, remarkable, and hold major implications toward combating various infectious conditions – including COVID-19. Some drugs appear to strengthen the body’s immune defenses against infections, while others can actually weaken the immune system. For example, morphine appears to suppress key immune cells and increase infection risk (especially after cancer surgery). Moreover, antipyretics – pain relief medications like acetaminophen (also known as paracetamol), ibuprofen, aspirin – also show a tendency to “reduce desirable immune responses when taken for vaccination.” On the other hand, however, the study also finds Aspirin may offer therapeutic value as an affordable, accessible supplemental option for the treatment of tuberculosis. Moreover, study authors report the anti-inflammatory medicine indomethacin may impede viral COVID-19 replication. Further large-scale studies are required to confirm these initial findings.

“One of the problems is that widely used medicines – such as paracetamol, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs like ibuprofen, and corticosteroids such as prednisone – have been around for decades and in the past we didn’t tend to consider their impacts on the immune system because it has been an under-recognized area,” concludes study co-author Professor Ric Day from UNSW and St Vincent’s Hospital, in a statement. “From community use to hospital and acute care, these classes of pain and fever medications are among the most popular drugs worldwide but we need to consider the significant impact these can have on our immune system and our response to infectious diseases, including COVID-19.”

“Hamilton” Creator Donated to BLM-Linked Bail Fund that Paid to Free Obama-linked Activist Accused of Trying to Shoot Jewish Mayoral Candidate:

“Hamilton” creator Lin-Manuel Miranda once promoted the Black Lives Matter-linked bail fund that paid to free a 21-year-old activist accused of trying to shoot a Jewish mayoral candidate dead in his campaign office. 21-year-old Quintez Brown allegedly showed up at Democratic mayoral candidate Craig Greenberg’s Louisville Kentucky campaign HQ, where he is said to have opened fire. Just two days later BLM Louisville, together with the BLM-run Louisville Community Bail Fund, posted the journalist and Obama Foundation mentee’s $100,000 cash bond, a decision Greenberg said reflected how “broken” the criminal justice system is. Now it appears that the bail fund that made Brown’s release possible has been promoted by major stars like Miranda. In May 2020, amid nationwide protest due to murder of George Floyd, the Hamilton creator and actor asked his over 3 million Twitter followers to support the Louisville Community Bail Fund by donating or volunteering. “Donating & adding the Louisville Community Bail Fund to the list below,” Miranda wrote, including links. “If you cannot donate, amplify/volunteer.” “If you are heartsick over racism & injustice, let it manifest action, work towards justice, however you can manage,” he added. “God keep you safe.” Later that year TV host Padma Lakshmi also amplified the group on Twitter, posting a link to the bail fund and asking her followers to donate if they can. Social activists used their publicly donated funds to secure Brown’s release from behind bars, claiming he would be safer at home and he is suffering PTSD after two years of social unrest and the COVID pandemic.

Examiner – Lens:

Maria Nicanor, an architecture curator and historian, was named director of the Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum. She is currently the executive director of the Rice Design Alliance and was a curator of architecture and urbanism at the Guggenheim Museum.

Children are Severely Behind in Reading:

The kindergarten crisis of last year, when millions of 5-year-olds spent months outside of classrooms, has become this year’s reading emergency. As the pandemic enters its third year, a cluster of new studies now show that about a third of children in the youngest grades are missing reading benchmarks, up significantly from before the pandemic. In Virginia, one study found that early reading skills were at a 20-year low this fall, which the researchers described as “alarming.” In the Boston region, 60% of students at some high-poverty schools have been identified as at high risk for reading problems – twice the number of students as before the pandemic, according to Tiffany P. Hogan, director of the Speech and Language Literacy Lab at the MGH Institute of Health Professions in Boston. Children in every demographic group have been affected, but Black and Hispanic children, as well as those from low-income families, those with disabilities and those who are not fluent in English, have fallen the furthest behind.

“We’re in new territory,” Dr. Hogan said about the pandemic’s toll on reading. If children do not become competent readers by the end of elementary school, the risks are “pretty dramatic,” she said. Poor readers are more likely to drop out of high school, earn less money as adults and become involved in the criminal justice system. The literacy crisis did not start with the pandemic. In 2019, results on national and international exams showed stagnant or declining American performance in reading, and widening gaps between high and low performers. The causes are multifaceted, but many experts point to a shortage of educators trained in phonics and phonemic awareness – the foundational skills of linking the sounds of spoken English to the letters that appear on the page. The pandemic has compounded those issues.

Mexican Cartel ‘Cannibal Schools’ Force Recruits to Eat Human Flesh:

A member of the Jalisco New Generation Cartel – his stomach straining against a black sleeveless vest – is crouching over the body of a mutilated foot soldier from a rival crime group. The fallen man’s hands are bound and his chest looks like it has been torn open. Shocking cellphone footage – captured in broad daylight – shows the hitman tearing large bites from the dead man’s heart. When the video first surfaced in Mexico’s troubled Zacatecas state last month, it quickly went viral. Dr. Robert J. Bunker, a security analyst who studies Mexico’s cartels, told The Daily Beast that was exactly the point: It was a public display intended as a threat to the Sinaloa outfit.

Other cartels like the Knights Templar, the Zetas, and the Michoacán Family have all practiced cannibalism – sometimes to terrorize rivals, to initiate recruits, or even as part of death-cult like rituals meant to weed out spies. Dutch anthropologist Teun Voeten, who has also served as a war correspondent in Mexico, likens the growing trend to that of beheadings. Decapitations were unheard of in Mexico before 2006, according to Voeten. “After the first incidents, other crime groups started to commit beheadings as well and a vicious circle of imitation and escalation of extreme violence came into being,” Voeten told The Daily Beast. “Now there are dozens of beheadings a year in Mexico.

Examiner – 20 Years – A Look At 2002

The LBN Examiner was founded on June 1, 2002, an incredible 20 years ago. Let’s take a look back at what was going on in 2002:

** On March 20, the 16th Soul Train Music Awards winners were The O’Jays, Dr. Dre & Alicia Keys.

** On March 25, TV reality show “The Bachelor” aired on ABC in the U.S.

Examiner – Lens:

Scream actress Melissa Barrera.

Examiner – Commentary by George Vanderman:

Political Correctness Run Amok Update
** Levi Brand President Jennifer Sey, on track to become the next CEO, was forced to resign for speaking out against school closures and lockdowns, and moving from San Francisco to Denver so that her children could have a “normal childhood.” She was offered $1M to stay quiet about what happened. She refused it, and is speaking out.

** Joint Chief of Staff Mark Milley has revealed that more than 5.3 million man hours have been spent on workshops on “Diversity and Extremism in Ranks,” instead of countering real threats like China, Russia and Iran. I guess our armed forces are now ready to counter all other “woke” armed forces in the world.

** NPR had a piece headlined, “Which skin color emoji should you use? The answer can be more complex than you think.” They claimed that white people using the common yellow-handed, thumbs-up emoji can actually suggest ignorance of white privilege. The official Twitter account publicized the article, writing, “Some white people may choose [this] emoji because it feels neutral – but some academics argue that opting out of [tan thumbs-up emoji] signals a lack of awareness about white privilege.”

Robotics Update
** If you would like to be creeped out, check out the robot child, Nikola, developed by Japanese scientists. Nikola can convey six facial expressions, which are eerily human-like – happiness, sadness, fear, anger, surprise and disgust.

** Now, here is a product we all are going to want. Sony has developed a £60 carrying strap for its robotic dog, Aibo, so that owners can hold their bots on their chests like a real baby.

Emotional Support Animals Update
** A New York man has launched a battle to keep his emotional support animal – a 110-pound Vietnamese pot-bellied pig, which helped him cope with his divorce. The no-fun town officials claim that Ellie is a farm animal and is being kept illegally.

Cancel Culture Update
** The Left has been bending over backward to hammer the Free State of Florida. How has that worked out for them? Florida has boasted a record number of tourists in 2021, topping pre-pandemic numbers.

Ministries Update
** This is one for all of us who have become ordained ministers on the internet. A priest has resigned from a Catholic Church in Phoenix, after it was determined that he incorrectly performed thousands of baptisms by changing one word. All of those baptisms have been invalidated. All of us ordained ministers know that when baptizing someone, you say, “I baptize you in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.” That poor minister had said, “We baptize you…”

Artificial Intelligence Update
** A study has found that fake faces created by AI look more trustworthy than real people. These faces were found to be not only highly realistic, but are nearly indistinguishable from real faces, and even judged to be more trustworthy.

Toxic Masculinity Update
** Cultural critic Nina Power says that in the current climate young men feel alienated. The job market often requires “feminine” skills like communication over labor. Nina says, “men today have never been so diminished…and it’s high time we stood up for them…masculinity is in crisis.”

Examiner – Bookkeeping:

> $53B: The amount of money commercial casinos collected in 2021 – their best year on record.

> $415M: The total student loan debt the U.S. Department of Education will erase for about 16,000 borrowers who were defrauded from their for-profit schools.

> 2,923 pounds: The weight of the battery in the 2022 GM Hummer electric pickup truck.

> 10.19 ounces: The weight of the world’s heaviest strawberry grown in Israel.

> ~1 foot: The estimated rise in sea levels through 2050, according to a new U.S. government report.

Examiner – Lens:

Actress Alia Shawkat of “Search Party.”

Examiner – (Notable) Remarks:

** The leaders of the Black Lives Matter movement have come up with incredible ways to use all the money those kind and hopeful people gave them, $5 at a time for black lives, plus big corporate donations. Did they share it all in a transparent way with the families of people killed unjustly by police? Oh god no. They bought an awesome party house (news broken by the New York Post). Under Patrisse Cullors, the head of the BLM Global Network who has since resigned amid a scandal that she bought several homes, a transfer of money was reportedly made from BLM to Cullors’ wife’s philanthropy, which then spent $6.3 million on a fantastic mansion in Toronto. They’re calling it Wildseed, “a transfeminist, queer affirming space politically aligned with supporting Black liberation,” which is a lot of words for party house. Indiana’s attorney general called BLM a “scam” organization, and California’s Department of Justice has sent a warning letter to the organization for failing to submit the proper nonprofit forms for 2020 – BLM is now banned from soliciting more donations in the state. Even New York Magazine is begrudgingly looking into some BLM financial irregularities this week. At some point a scam crosses into such a brazen offensive territory, you have to just have to applaud the chutzpah. BLM is the Theranos of social justice. —- Nellie Bowles

** Karen Swallow Prior said something that rings in my ears: “Modernity has peaked.” The age of the autonomous individual, the age of the narcissistic self, the age of consumerism and moral drift has left us with bitterness and division, a surging mental health crisis and people just being nasty to one another. Millions are looking for something else, some system of belief that is communal, that gives life transcendent meaning. —- David Brooks

** The C.D.C. describes medium-rare hamburgers as “undercooked” and dangerous. The agency also directs Americans to avoid raw cookie dough and not to eat more than a teaspoon or so of salt every day. And the C.D.C. tells sexually active women of childbearing age not to drink alcohol unless they are on birth control. If you happen to be somebody who engages in any of these risky activities, I have some bad news for you this morning: You apparently do not believe in following the science. The misery of the COVID-19 pandemic – with its death, illness, isolation and frustration – has left many Americans desperate for clear guidance on how to live safely. People want to protect themselves, their family and their communities, especially the most medically vulnerable members of it. This instinct is both understandable and profoundly decent. But it has led to a widespread misunderstanding. Many people have come to believe that expert opinion is a unitary, omniscient force. That’s the assumption behind the phrases “follow the science” and “what the science says.” It imagines science almost as a god – Science – who could solve our dilemmas if we only listened. —- David Leonhardt, N.Y. Times

** It suggests that the lies of the woke cannot fully penetrate the minds of most non-college-educated folks. It genuinely gives me hope. And it’s something we need to build on, not tear down. This is not toxic masculinity, premised on violence, nor patriarchy, bent on the subjugation of women. It’s an egalitarian but distinct masculinity, needing direction, and seeking, however clumsily at times, a form of manly virtue. Great civilizations do not despise this natural male urge to ennoble their distinct sex; they value, celebrate, and direct it. We once did. Our new elites insist that such a distinctly manly virtue cannot and should not exist. But if they do not respect and cultivate it, a dumb and dangerous masculinity will fill the void instead. In fact, to a dangerous extent, it already has. —- Andrew Sullivan

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The Real Story by Sarah Garcia:

** Brand new CNN boss Chris Licht is now reportedly determined to take the uber-liberal network in a new and more respectable direction. Yes, because the current “woke” version of CNN failed miserably.

Examiner – Readers Speak:

Should there be a federal no-fly list of passengers convicted of unruly behavior?

Examiner readers from all 50 of the United States and 26 foreign countries have spoken.

Examiner – Investigates:

** Photos or paintings? READ

** Researchers have found that eating a diet that is high in sugar, saturated fat and processed carbohydrates can disrupt your sleep while eating more plants, fiber, and foods rich in unsaturated fat – such as nuts, olive oil, fish and avocados – seems to have the opposite effect, helping to promote sound sleep.

** “Pound Cake” is so named because the original pound cake contained one pound each of butter, sugar, eggs, and flour. In the days when many people could not read, this simple recipe was easy to remember.

** Almost 64% of the U.S. population (and 74% of adults) is fully vaccinated. The most recent data suggest unvaccinated adult patients are 12 to 18 times more likely to require hospitalization. READ

** Why we can’t pay attention anymore. READ

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Examiner – Reader Question:

Are drug companies responsible for the opioid crisis?

Send your reply to: LBNExaminer@TimeWire.net

Examiner – Reader Comment:

** New York City has nobody to blame for the uptick in violent crime other than progressive lawmakers that enacted woke criminal justice reforms. Reports reveal that despite Democrats’ push to rectify the imbalance of Black Americans who are arrested, convicted, and incarcerated they have only their effort have resulted in a spike in crime, with more Black Americans victimized. —- Jeremy S., Columbia University

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LBN Examiner 03/06/2022

EXAMINER READERS SPEAK:

CHICAGO’S LIGHTFOOT NARROWLY ECLIPSES L.A.’S GARCETTI AS WORST MAYOR IN U.S. – OUT OF OFFICE DE BLASIO WOULD HAVE WON IN LANDSLIDE:

Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot slightly beat out L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti as the “Worst Current Mayor” in the United States according to a large LBN Examiner reader poll with voters in all 50 of the United States and 26 foreign countries. Though his name was not on the reader poll since he’s out of office, former New York Mayor Bill de Blasio would have won an overwhelming majority of votes had he still been in office, according to thousands of readers who expressed their strong feelings in the poll.

Unfortunately, even tragically, when you look around the major urban areas of America, there’s much competition for the worst mayor from Chicago to Seattle, San Francisco to Atlanta, Philadelphia to Chicago and from Portland to Los Angeles. “Let’s be honest, they’re both disgraceful, so it’s hard to pick which one is worse,” said longtime LBN reader Doctor Clark H., a prominent orthopedic surgeon and resident of Denver, CO. “Look at the cities. The crime, the filth, the decay, the schools.”

However, the big surprise in the reader poll came in just how many people mentioned former New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio as the worst mayor in the U.S. and perhaps of all time. Though de Blasio is recently out of office, thousands of LBN Examiner voters nominated him for worst mayor in America, not to mention all time. “Bill de Blasio took a well-run city after 20 years of Rudy Giuliani and Mike Bloomberg and turned it into a disaster that is [an] unsafe, filthy decaying national laughingstock,” said New York business owner Guy F., who’s lived in Manhattan since 1976, “de Blasio was worse than any mayor in New York City history including David Dinkins!”

Florida Doctor Gets Probation After Strangling Girlfriend and Killing Father:

A Florida doctor has reportedly gotten house arrest and probation after shooting his father and strangling his girlfriend in 2018. Rafael Azulay, 47, was already on probation after three arrests for domestic violence against his girlfriend, including felony charge of battery-strangulation, when he asked his parents to visit and then shot his father, court documents showed. His mother later attested that the entire incident was an accident and that she didn’t want her son prosecuted. After signing a plea deal for domestic battery by strangulation and homicide-manslaughter by culpable negligence, Azulay will now spend 10 years on probation following two years of house arrest in a home with his mother. For the battery charges, the arrest documents claim Azulay’s girlfriend was afraid to testify against him, claiming he threatened he had a gun and told her he would “bring her to her mother in a body bag.” Now that he is to be released, she told the Miami Herald she’s “making plans to change my name and move out of the state.”

Elderly Chicago Couple Beaten Senseless in Broad Daylight:

An elderly Chicago couple was brutally attacked by a stranger as they walked home from a subway stop last week in yet another instance of the city’s spiraling crime wave. Bob Tataryn and his wife, Kathryn, were walking home from the Chicago Transit Authority Blue Line stop in the city’s upscale Irving Park neighborhood, where houses go for $5.5M to $750K, last week when a man started following them. As the man continued to stalk the couple, Bob decided to confront him, at which point the man, who has not yet been identified, started punching them before fleeing the scene – without even stealing any of the couple’s personal belongings. Bob was left with a broken nose and severe bruises to his face in the aftermath of the attack, and Kathryn needed two surgeries to deal with broken wrists and a broken jaw. She is now unable to open her mouth, Bob told CBS 2, and can only eat liquid food. “My wife and I are not doing well,” Bob explained, adding that they are “mentally weak” and “physically improving.” But, Bob said, he is not going to let the brutal attack deter them from enjoying the city, even as its crime rates continue to soar. “It definitely crossed our minds but I’m hoping we get over the shock,” Bob said. “The city is our city. [We] can’t let the bad guys win!”

Examiner – Lens:

Kim Stanley Robinson’s novels envision the dire problems of the future – but also their solutions. The Ministry for the Future displays novelist Kim Stanley Robinson’s anti-anti-utopianism: its prognosis is both heartening and harrowing.

Lifting Weights for Just 30 Minutes a Week Lowers Risk of Death from all Causes:

Bigger muscles may be the key to a longer life. According to a study out of Japan, lifting weights at the gym or even doing some heavy lifting around the house for just 30 minutes a week cuts the risk of dying early by up to a fifth. Prior studies show that building muscle is linked to a lower risk of death, but scientists had not probed what the optimal “dose” might be. Researchers from the Tohoku University Graduate School of Medicine report that muscle strength training for 30 to 60 minutes each week cuts the risk of death from heart disease, diabetes and cancer by 10% to 20%. And when combined with aerobic exercise the risk can drop by 40%. Not a fan of the gym? Scientists say that similar levels of muscle-building, such as heavy gardening activities, counts as a strength training session just as much as lifting weights or doing push-ups does. Interestingly, however, the study finds that working out for longer than that does nothing to cut the risk further.

CHINA – The Price of Admission:

Before the Winter Olympics, Chinese officials cautioned athletes against speaking out about topics that cast them in a bad light. Then, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi told American athletes not to anger the Chinese authorities. It was the latest sign that China’s campaign to stifle dissent is succeeding in an important way: U.S. institutions and businesses are increasingly silencing themselves to avoid angering the Chinese government.

The professional wrestler and actor John Cena apologized, in Mandarin, last year for calling Taiwan a country. In 2019, a Houston Rockets executive apologized for tweeting support for pro-democracy protests in Hong Kong after Chinese officials complained, and a top video game publisher suspended an e-sports competitor who voiced support for the protests. The 2013 movie World War Z was rewritten to clarify that its zombie-spawning virus didn’t originate in China.

American businesses and institutions want access to this enormous market. Given China’s authoritarian leadership, that means playing by the Chinese Communist Party’s rules – and, in particular, avoiding criticism of its human rights abuses. So cultural institutions that are influential bastions of American values like free expression are now frequently absent from public conversations about China.

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Examiner – 20 Years – A Look At 2002

The LBN Examiner was founded on June 1, 2002, an incredible 20 years ago. Let’s take a look back at what was going on in 2002:

** On March 21 In Pakistan, suspects were charged with murder for their part in the kidnapping and killing of Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl.

** On March 5, MTV premiered the reality TV program “The Osbournes” featuring the family of Ozzy Osbourne.

Examiner – Lens:

The Parthenon temple is seen atop the Athenian Acropolis during heavy snowfall in Athens, Greece, January 24.

Examiner – Commentary by Nellie Bowles:

** Saudi Arabia snubbed President Biden’s request to release more oil, which would tame prices at the pump. The Saudis would rather keep their deal with Russia and let American gas prices stay high.

** Parents have gotten very organized against the unpopular ultra-woke politics seeping into public school classrooms, and a few different backlashes are going on. There is the movement for “Curriculum Transparency,” which would have schools post lesson plans, teacher trainings, and curricular materials so that parents can see what’s up. This idea seems extremely reasonable to me and puts the left in the unenviable position of arguing against government transparency. They’ve taken the bait, of course: The ghost ship that is the ACLU is opposing transparency efforts. We thought they were fans of freedom of information.

** Christina Yuna Lee, 35, walked up to her sixth-floor apartment in New York City this week. Her alleged murderer, Assamad Nash stayed slightly behind as he followed her up the stairs and into her home. She screamed for help. Police arrived to the door. They say Nash imitated a woman’s voice at one point, telling them there was no need for any help. When police finally got in, Lee had been killed with 40 jabs to the neck and torso with her own kitchen knife. Nash had been arrested previously at least a dozen times. Basically the new rule in America’s cities is that no one goes to jail until they do a murder.

** In 2014, there were 13,953 cars stolen in Los Angeles. In 2021, it was more than 24,000. In New York, car theft is up 92% between 2019 and 2021. When crime rises like this, you feel it. We all have to start living like it, myself included. It doesn’t feel good though. Trusting makes us happy and makes a better, stronger, richer society. The stress of living in an unsafe neighborhood makes for worse pregnancy outcomes and poorer mental health. Having to think a lot about our physical safety is a mental and physical tax.

Examiner – Did You Know:

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Covid – Update

** The CDC has reported that the Omicron variant is half as likely to cause hospitalization and 91% less likely to cause death in infected patients when compared to Delta.

** The CDC also reports that 75% of people who die from the virus have at least four co-morbidities.

** Americans no longer fear Covid. A 68% majority say the economy is now their biggest concern.

Examiner – Lens:

Japanese artist Sachi shows off her creation of a realistic 3D cat portrait, made by using felted wool, at her house in Sagamihara, Japan, on January 21.

Examiner – (Notable) Remarks:

** Perhaps a healthier response from Neil Young would’ve been for him to start his own Spotify podcast. More speech rather than less is the classical liberal tradition of getting closer to the truth. The new progressive tenet of less speech is a philosophy that shares a little too much in common with the darker societies of old. If Neil has the answers, let’s hear them. —- Winston Marshall

** Gambling addicts can imperil themselves and their families by wagering more than they can afford. In the extreme, that can lead to bankruptcy, embezzlement, family violence and suicide. More often, people gamble more than is healthy even though they may fit only one or two of the American Psychiatric Association’s criteria for gambling addiction, which include being “restless or irritable when attempting to cut down or stop gambling” and a need to “gamble with increasing amounts of money in order to achieve the desired excitement.” The question society hasn’t squarely faced is whether the good, clean fun that some people get from placing wagers outweighs the harm suffered by gambling addicts and the much larger group of problem gamblers, and if the bad outweighs the good, what to do about it. —- Peter Coy

** Whoopi Goldberg, I think it’s safe to say, is not a deep thinker, and wouldn’t claim to be. She’s also clearly not an anti-Semite. She’s a talented entertainer and merely reflects many (but not all) of the assumptions of Hollywood types – well-intentioned, rarely ruffled, cultural leftism. But that’s precisely why her comments on “The View” about antisemitism and the Holocaust are so interesting. They expose some aspects of “anti-whiteness” and “antiracism” as these CRT ideas have trickled down into the public consciousness, and also a deep, long-standing sense among some African-Americans that Jews in America are not usually the oppressed, but often the oppressor. These are things no one wants to explore very much – because it’s complicated, fraught, and, well, who needs the grief? —- Andrew Sullivan

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Examiner – Humankind

> An Illinois dad gets a tattoo to match his 4-year-old daughter’s scar from heart surgeries. READ

> A 5-year-old boy sporting a tux asks a classmate to be his valentine. WATCH

> An Indiana man receives life-saving kidney transplant after holding up a sign at a football game. READ

> Long-lost brothers are reunited thanks to a local news report. READ

Examiner – Investigates:

** How the nation of Ukraine ranks: 1st) in Europe in proven recoverable reserves of uranium ores; 2nd) place in Europe and 10th place in the world in terms of titanium ore reserves; 2nd) place in the world in terms of explored reserves of manganese ores (2.3 billion tons, or 12% of the world’s reserves); 2nd) largest iron ore reserves in the world (30 billion tons); 2nd) place in Europe in terms of mercury ore reserves; 3rd) place in Europe (13th place in the world) in shale gas reserves (22 trillion cubic meters); 4th in the world by the total value of natural resources; 7th) place in the world in coal reserves (33.9 billion tons).

** In addition, Ukraine is an agricultural country: 1st) in Europe in terms of arable land area; 3rd) place in the world by the area of black soil (25% of world’s volume); 1st) place in the world in exports of sunflower and sunflower oil; 2nd) place in the world in barley production and 4th place in barley exports; 3rd) largest producer and 4th largest exporter of corn in the world; 4th) largest producer of potatoes in the world; 5th) largest rye producer in the world; 5th) place in the world in beet production (75,000 tons); 8th) place in the world in wheat exports; 9th) place in the world in the production of chicken eggs; 16th) place in the world in cheese exports. Ukraine can meet the food needs of 600 million people.

** Further, Ukraine is an industrialized country: 1st) in Europe in ammonia production; 2-е) Europe’s and 4th largest natural gas pipeline system in the world (142.5 bln cubic meters of gas throughput capacity in the EU); 3rd) largest in Europe and 8th largest in the world in terms of installed capacity of nuclear power plants; 3rd) place in Europe and 11th in the world in terms of the rail network length (21,700 km); 3rd) place in the world (after the U.S. and France) in the production of locators and locating equipment; 3rd) largest iron exporter in the world; 4th) largest exporter of turbines for nuclear power plants in the world; 4th) world’s largest manufacturer of rocket launchers; 4th) place in the world in clay exports; 4th) place in the world in titanium exports; 8th) place in the world in exports of ores and concentrates; 9th) place in the world in exports of defense industry products; 10th) largest steel producer in the world (32.4 million tons).

Any wonder why Russia wants to take over all these assets and productivity?

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