Monthly Archives: October 2016

Raker Man

A lovely story of kindness and respect for a human being down on his luck.

Storyshucker

The tropical sun was intense but from the shade we sipped Pina Coladas and stared at the blue Caribbean. A vacation in the Dominican Republic! We staked claim to a favorite cabana and by afternoon were chatting with beachside neighbors. Diane in the next cabana knew a lot about the area and in the balmy breeze we compared notes on favorite restaurants as we enjoyed the beach.

The next hot day while eating lusciously ripe strawberries I caught sight of the trio working in the sun. We’d noticed the daily routine of these three whose job it was, apparently, to clear the beach each day of seaweed washed up during the night. They were a motley band in ragged clothes. Locals in need of work I supposed, and hard work it was. Each day they scoured the beach, raking and hauling debris. An older worker lagged behind. The effort it…

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Squirrel Gets Into The Halloween Spirit!

A special Halloween treat. Entertaining squirrel carves his own pumpkin.

kraftycatcreations

The is one talented squirrel! Perhaps his name is Claude Mornuts?

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DEA Delays Kratom Ban, More Senators Object To Process And ‘Unintended Consequences’

This is an update to my first post about kratom, dated August 30, 2016.  A follow-up by David Kroll on Forbes, shows that the DEA is listening to some of our representatives in government who are listening to their constituents.

kratom plant

Mr. Kroll states:

I was on the phone today [September 30, 2016] with DEA spokesperson Russ Baer when the clock struck 5:00 pm on the East Coast without a final order from the agency making two chemicals from kratom Schedule I controlled substances. Baer said that the plan to place the plant alkaloids, mitragynine and 7-hydroxymitragynine, onto the most restrictive classification of drugs of abuse and public health risk is still in progress and “will come sooner rather than later.”

The alkaloids have been known for over a decade to possess some modest opioid actions but their potential benefit for patients with chronic pain and substance dependence was overlooked in the notice of intent to place the botanical chemicals in the same class as heroin, LSD and mescaline.

Meanwhile today, Senator Cory Booker (D-NJ), Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) and Sen. Ron Wyden (D-OR) sent a two-page letter to DEA Acting Administrator Chuck Rosenberg calling for the agency to delay this scheduling order. The Senators objected to the emergency, temporary scheduling order that could be enacted within 30 days without “a robust process of stakeholder input and discussion of medical, public safety and scientific considerations.”

In the intervening 30 days, kratom advocates and researchers have voiced concern that the botanical dietary supplement does indeed have legitimate medical uses, although not as an FDA-approved botanical drug. Most vocal on the scientific side have been researchers at Columbia University and Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center. The teams have independently and collaboratively published two papers on kratom-derived chemicals and their potentially beneficial constellation of complex actions on human opioid receptors.

Columbia associate research scientist, Andrew Kruegel, PhD, was specifically cited in the Booker-Gillibrand-Wyden letter to DEA as he led an 11-scientist letter of objection to kratom scheduling that was submitted to congressional representatives on September 2. Kruegel is also first author on a paper published in the Journal of the American Chemical Society in May showing the alkaloids in kratom act on opioid receptor signal transmission entirely differently [from] strong opioids such as morphine, fentanyl and oxycodone, posing less risk of respiratory depression.

This is the first time that Congressional elected officials have come out of their respective “closets” and are taking a stand against the strong-arm DEA when they have proof that the “plant” does have medical properties which are not as risky as the opioids.  In doing so, these Senators, in taking this heroic, progressive stand, are, in essence, thumbing their noses at Big Pharma and the FDA; telling them there is scientific evidence proving the benefits of kratom, and there is another way other than opioids, to help patients who are suffering with pain.

There is a big “however,” because Russ Baer, spokesperson for the DEA, still believes kratom’s inclusion on Schedule I “will come sooner rather than later.”

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Children Bring Happiness and Talent

A great start for a Sunday!  Listen, watch and be blown away!!!

Maati Baani brings 45 child artistes together in one song to pay tribute to Michael Jackson!

 

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In The Company Of Lizards

I spend a lot of time in front of my computer; rather, in front of my Samsung display/TV screen.  My tower is off to the side and out of the way.  The display sits on my desk in front of the window in my office, so, with the verticals drawn away to the side in the morning, I can see all the happenings of bees, mosquitos, gnats, etc., on the screen and in front of it, flitting around.  What caught my eye, er, rather, the eye of the camera, were these two quite fat, healthy, cavorting lizards.

lizards

They are doing a great job in keeping the insects and bugs populations down.  All the lizards I see around the outside of my house all have fat bellies.  It’s a paradise down here in South Florida for all types of life:  humans included.

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