It Is Well With My Soul

My favorite hymn, by far, is “It Is Well With My Soul” but not just because of the beautiful message contained in those lyrics but because of the incredible backstory that led Horatio Spafford to write those lyrics.

Spafford was a successful lawyer but he had most of his property investments destroyed in the Great Chicago Fire of 1871 and his financial woes continued for years after.

In hopes of getting a fresh start, he planned to travel to England with his wife and 4 daughters but at the last minute he had to delay his trip to take care of some unfinished business in Chicago. He decided to send his family ahead of him but during the voyage his family’s ship collided with another vessel and sank, killing his 4 daughters.

Weeks later, as Spafford traveled to meet his wife in England, he wrote the lyrics to It Is Well With My Soul once his ship passed the point where his daughters died.

Most people who sing this hymn probably never realized that this beloved Christian hymns came about because of a terrible tragedy.

But isn’t that always the case? It seems that when times are good we tend to lean onto our own understanding and minimize our relationship with Jesus.  I don’t know about you, but with me, I can honestly say that the closest I’ve been to Jesus has been during times when I needed Him the most.

The rest of Spafford’s life may have been mired in less than Christ-like behavior but never the less, it just goes to show you that God can work through sinful folks (in other words, everybody) to provide us with a comforting message in troubling times.

Kristene DiMarco and Bethel Music have an interesting twist on this hymn and the following stanza serves as a reminder that God has a plan and won’t allow our persecutions to continue indefinitely.

Far be it from me to not believe

Even when my eyes can’t see

And this mountain that’s in front of me

Will be thrown into the mist of the sea

Yes, there are times when we wonder where God is and when these mountains that are before us will be tossed aside. As a Christian, it is comforting to know that through it all, it is well with my soul.

Posted in christianity | Leave a comment

What Does The Left Consider A Fair Share?

As tax day looms in the US, the Wall-Street Journal has this great piece about how much of the US income tax burden is shouldered by the rich.

Here are the two charts from the WSJ story and they used 2014 tax data:

chart 1

 

chart 2

To me, a “Fair Share” means that if a particular income demographic group earns X% of the total US income then they should pay that same X% of total US income tax. But the US income tax system should never be confused with “fair” and these charts prove it.

The main takeaway from these two charts is the sobering fact that people making over $134,300 annually (the top 20% of all US income earners) comprise 51.3% of all US income but pay 83.9% of all US income tax. That’s right, 20% of the people earning a living in the US pay over 80% of all US income taxes.

Time and time again this “80/20 rule” pops up in business (20% of the people do 80% of the work) and now the tax system in the US has brought a new meaning to this 80/20 rule.

It gets worse if you’re REALLY wealthy – Those people making over $615,000 (labeled the evil 1% by the Left) comprise just 17.1% of all US income but pay 45.7% of all US income taxes. I’ll call this the 45/1 rule which states that 1% of all US income earners pay over 45% of all US income taxes.

As a side note, I’ve covered this stuff before in a previous post in 2011 and if you go take a look at that post (which used 2009 IRS data) you will notice that our unfair tax system is getting worse. In 2009, people earning 49.4% of the total US income paid 74.7% of all US income taxes (as opposed to those earning 51.3% of the total US income paying 83.9% of all US income taxes in 2014) so the tax burden is increasing on the people making roughly 50% of all US income.

How much of a “fair share” is enough for the Left? Do they want the folks earning 50% of US income to pay 100% of all US income taxes? It appears this is the direction we are going and if the Left really wants a class warfare story in the US then we are well on our way but it’s not for the reasons they’d like to tell us.

Remember these 80/20 and 45/1 rules the next time you encounter a Leftist who says the rich don’t pay enough in taxes.

Leftists like Senator Elizabeth Warren like to talk about the rich paying their “fair share” but I don’t think they know what that phrase means.

Posted in economics, Income Inequality, politics | 1 Comment

Solutions In Search Of Problems – Part 23

Apparently all the big problems have been solved because the Obama administration has moved on to proposing solutions for fake problems:

Today the White House delivered an ambitious target for cutting emissions of greenhouse gases. Those gases contribute to climate change. The commitment is part of a global effort to forge a new treaty to protect the climate. NPR’s Christopher Joyce has more. CHRISTOPHER JOYCE, BYLINE: The next big thing in international climate negotiations takes place next December in Paris. The United Nations will try to get every country – rich and poor and in between – to set a target to cut greenhouse gas emissions. Today President Obama officially put his cards on the table – cut emissions 26 to 28 percent below their level in 2005, and do it in 10 years. White House adviser Brian Dietz was quick to point out a press conference that the U.S. has already lowered its emissions, even as the economy has grown.

Never mind that satellite temperature measurements of our atmosphere have been flat since 1997:

satellite temperatures And by all means, don’t worry about the fact that there is zero correlation between atmospheric CO2 concentrations and global temperature anomalies:

temp vs co2 We are governed by children.

Posted in Climate Change | 2 Comments

CO2 Emissions Are Flat?

The latest propaganda from the AGW cult attempts to convince you that CO2 emissions in 2014 were flat.

“Energy-related carbon dioxide emissions flatlined globally in 2014, while the world economy grew. The International Energy Agency reports that this marks “the first time in 40 years in which there was a halt or reduction in emissions of the greenhouse gas that was not tied to an economic downturn.”

The AGW cult generates these lies to help propagate the myth that CO2 emissions are not needed in a thriving economy in hopes that countries will sign up for devastating curbs on CO2 emissions. From the article:

“All this “provides much-needed momentum to negotiators preparing to forge a global climate deal in Paris in December,” explained IEA Chief Economist Fatih Birol, who was just named the next IEA Executive Director. “For the first time, greenhouse gas emissions are decoupling from economic growth.”

Predictably, the Left is cherry picking their data. Notice they mentioned “energy-related carbon dioxide emissions” and they are only considering the government provided data on CO2 produced from power generation facilities.

Remember that the whole AGW cult theory is based on rising atmospheric CO2 levels increasing the temperature of the planet. Understandably, they have been very disturbed with the fact that global temperatures have been flat for the past 17 years while CO2 emissions have continued their steady increase. In response to the data TOTALLY contradicting their theory, they are now grasping at straws here.

A person interested in science knows that Mother Nature doesn’t care where the CO2 molecules come from and if the AGW cult theory is true, we should be more concerned with ALL CO2 emissions (people still drive automobiles with internal combustion engines, right?). As it turns out, an actual scientific measurement shows atmospheric CO2 levels are continuing to rise as the Mauna Loa data show.

co2 graph

The actual atmospheric CO2 data alone is enough to debunk the Think Progress article but we also know that there are 1,000 new coal fired plants planned to start up worldwide. Guess what gas these new plants will burb into the atmosphere!

One of the AGW cult’s sacraments of faith has always been atmospheric CO2 levels and now they are abandoning this real scientific data in favor of government provided estimates.

The AGW cult is on the ropes and their death throws are uncomfortable to watch.

Posted in Climate Change | 1 Comment

NPR Is Obsessed With Scott Walker

Don’t believe me? Check out this story about commodity prices and their link to mining equipment.

Sounds pretty innocuous and ho hum – copper and iron ore are dropping in price and therefore mining companies don’t has as much incentive to open new mines so they and the companies that make mining equipment lay people off.

So what? Yes, I feel sorry for those affected by this downturn but why was this non-story included on NPR’s Morning Edition today?

Simple, there is a Scott Walker tie in to the story.

I give you the opening and closing paragraphs of this story:

“Two years ago this month, mineral commodity prices were already down and Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker wanted to give mining companies, mining equipment makers and their suppliers a boost. Walker signed a controversial bill that makes it easier to develop a new mine in Wisconsin.”

“Meanwhile, it doesn’t look like sales of mining equipment will grow much anytime soon. In fact, that mining company that demanded the special legislation that Governor Walker signed in 2013, it now says it may cancel its planned iron ore mine in northern Wisconsin.”

The middle part of the story (11 paragraphs) never mentions Walker but instead focuses on examples of people who have lost their jobs and quotes/predictions from a financial analyst for the industry.

At an unbiased news organization, the middle part of this story would be the WHOLE story. Nothing would’ve been news worthy about a governor trying to help out his state’s citizens during an economic downturn only to see it backfire because the market downturn was too severe. But then again, I’d never label NPR an unbiased news organization so they had to lead and close with a tie in to Walker.

Make no mistake, if Scott Walker hadn’t been a leading candidate for the Republican nomination in 2016 (and the Left’s front runner wasn’t imploding) this story would’ve never been written.

Posted in npr, politics | 2 Comments

The Importance Of Frequent Blood Sugar Measurements For Type 2 Diabetics

In Engineering there is a saying that goes something like this – You can’t control a process if you can’t measure it. If you’re trying to control the temperature of a process output then you will fail every time if you don’t have a thermocouple installed to measure the output stream. This is fundamental stuff in engineering but this same principle holds true for a Type 2 Diabetic attempting to control his blood sugar levels. Our bodies are very complex systems even when everything is working right but once you throw in an autoimmune disease like Type 2 Diabetes, you need good data to determine what inputs are affecting blood sugar levels so you can determine whether your lifestyle changes are yielding positive results.

For two years I’ve been measuring my blood sugar at least once a day (“fasting” – in the morning when I wake up) and most days I add another measurement after a meal (usually 2 hours after dinner). I keep meticulous records of these measurements and as I’ve made changes in my lifestyle to keep my blood sugar levels in the normal range, I’ve used these daily measurements as my guide.

But I’ve often wondered what happens with my blood sugar levels during the 12+ hours between these measurements. Am I fooling myself thinking that these measurements are good just because the first and last measurements of the day are good?

So this past Saturday, 07-MAR-15, I decided to find out what my blood sugar levels were during the whole day. To do this, I kept a log of everything I put in my mouth and measured my blood sugar levels 7 different times throughout the day.

Before I get to the graph, let me first describe when and what I ate as well as the physical activity that made up my day.

My day started when I woke up at 9:45 am (Don’t judge me, Saturdays are my only day to sleep in!) and that is when I took my fasting blood sugar measurement.

Breakfast consisted of 3 eggs over medium, 4 pieces of bacon, 2 almond flour pancakes (1 cup of almond flour, 1 egg, cinnamon, nutmeg and water), about 3/8 cup of organic grade B maple syrup and 3 cups of coffee. The eggs and pancakes were cooked in pans greased with coconut oil.

After breakfast I used the chainsaw to trim 4 trees in the front yard and in my opinion, this could be considered moderate exercise. The chain saw had to be raised and held in position and hauling the limbs away also involved lifting, squatting and walking.

After an hour of that activity, I ran up to the neighborhood workout room, lifted weights for about 10 minutes and then ran back home. All this amounted to about 30 minutes of exercise.

I ate lunch at 1:30 pm and that consisted of 4 thin sandwich slices of turkey, safflower based mayonnaise, hot sauce, green olives, sun dried tomatoes and sweet red peppers.

I had 3 small snacks through the day – 3:00 pm, 4:15 pm and 5:25 pm – which consisted of a couple handfuls of pistachios, Krave pork jerky and a pear.

At 7:00 pm dinner was comprised of a grilled pork chop (Step 4 from Whole Foods and the meat came from a local farm), grilled brussels sprouts (recipe here) and a glass of red wine.

I didn’t mention my water intake for the day but I keep myself very hydrated and easily drink 1.5 to 2 liters of water each day and this day was no exception.

Based on my estimates for this day, I took in 3,370 calories, 193 grams of carbohydrates and 127 grams of fat.

This was a pretty typical day for me but I did try to push my carbohydrate and sugar intake to see what my blood sugar did during the day. The bulk of the carbs came from the maple syrup (75 grams), the pistachios (25 grams) and the pear (27 grams) for a total of 127 of the 193 grams. I typically take in about 50-75 grams of carbs per day (75 on the days I eat fruit) so this was a real test for my blood sugars. Consuming maple syrup is rare treat for me but as I’ve written about before, this food no longer spikes my blood sugars.

I don’t exercise like this every day but I do workout about 3 times per week so this day is not too far off from my normal routine. From my Fitbit Charge HR monitor, this day saw 16,038 steps, 7.43 miles walked/run and 3,122 calories burned.

Now here is my blood sugar graph for this day:

blood sugar measurement

Keep in mind that a normal fasting blood sugar level is between 70 and 100 mg/dL and a normal blood sugar level 2 hours after a meal is below 130 mg/dL. And by “normal”, I mean normal for someone without Diabetes. If you look at what the American Diabetes Association states is normal for a Type 2 Diabetic, these numbers will be higher by about 20 mg/dL.

My first measurement was 87 mg/dL and this is a typical fasting measurement for me now that I have been controlling my Type 2 Diabetes through the Paleo lifestyle. My fasting blood sugar measurements are rarely over 100 mg/dL and they stay mainly in the 80’s.

Note that my blood sugar measurement 1 hour after dinner was 97 mg/dL and 3 hours after dinner it was 89 mg/dL, which would be considered normal for a fasting measurement.

I was actually very surprised how controlled my blood sugar levels were even with this high carb/sugar intake and this reinforces my theory that my body has reset itself after adopting this Paleo lifestyle over the past 18 months.

There is plenty of negative press out there about the Paleo lifestyle and most of that comes from people who are either ignorant of it or have vested interests in pushing medicine but if someone like me (who had fasting blood sugar measurements in the 350’s when I was diagnosed) can reverse this terrible disease without medication then there must be something to this diet/lifestyle.

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Snow Is A Thing Of The Past

NPR had a ground breaking story about whether snow was dangerous to eat or not (sarcasm) but the Leftist censors couldn’t allow a story about snow to end without giving the standard AGW cult talking points in the last paragraph:

“Researchers are generally less concerned about what’s in the snow than the fact that climate change may be causing it to rapidly disappear, especially in western regions of the U.S. “Enjoy it now, because there’s a whole lot less of it,” says Anne Nolin, a hydroclimatologist at Oregon State University.”

So snow will be a thing of the past? Someone forgot to tell Mother Nature about this because:

49 of 50 states have snow

Posted in Climate Change, npr | Leave a comment

Cue The Scott Walker Hate

I like Scott Walker for many reasons but maybe the main one is how he drives the Left crazy and I found a great example today.

NPR has a story entitled “Why Is Milwaukee So bad For Black People?” and in case the title isn’t enough to tell you what the story is about…

“While many Rust Belt cities — Chicago, Detroit, Cleveland, etc. — have similar histories of African-American struggles, Milwaukee has some of the same problems but not the same profile, mainly because it isn’t well known for its large black population at all. But blacks make up 40 percent of the city and, for many who grew up there (like me), none of this data is surprising. Milwaukee is a vibrant city known for its breweries and ethnic festivals and can be a great place to live — unless you’re black. Statistically, it is one of the worst places in the country for African-Americans to reside. Here’s a breakdown of how — and why — being black in Brew City carries a heavy burden.”

“… the city is the most segregated in America.”

Predictably, clueless Leftists take this as a sign that Governor Scott Walker is a big RACIST!

npr comment

Hate to spoil the party for Averal and the rest of the NPR echo chamber but you might want to look at the 2014 Governor election results by county here and pay close attention to the small blue rectangle in the bottom right corner of the state.

WI election map

Yes, Democrats outnumbered Republicans almost 2 to 1.

If you want to pick a political party to call racist then you should start with the Democrats in Milwaukee.

Posted in politics | 1 Comment

Type 2 Diabetes Update – 2 Years Post Diagnosis

It was two years ago on 07-MAR-13 that I was diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes and I labeled it as a life changing moment but at that time I had no idea how much my life would truly change!

I don’t think anyone is truly “comfortable” with change but I am hard wire to be a quick adopter to change and adapt quicker than others. Some might view that as a weakness because I can be seen as unpredictable and willing to alter core beliefs to match the prevailing winds. But I view myself as someone who is quick to obtain the right data, analyze it and course correct to take advantage of the new landscape.

It took me a couple of days to come to grips with this major disease that I now had the unfortunate pleasure of living with but make no mistake about it, I fully accepted this disease and was determined to not let it beat me. I told my endocrinologist at our first meeting that my goal was to die of something unrelated to diabetes.

It should be noted that my Type 2 Diabetes diagnosis was not “borderline” but very serious. A person without Type 2 Diabetes will have morning (fasting) blood sugar measurements in the 70-100 mg/dL range and my measurements were around 350 mg/dL. I was in the fast lane to a very long and painful death – nerve damage, losing my eyesight, amputation of extremities, kidney damage and heart disease. For a person who doesn’t take seriously his Type 2 Diabetes diagnosis, the end game is very bad.

My first plan of action was to reverse the deleterious lifestyle choices I had made a couple of years prior to my diagnosis which amounted to resuming my regular running/exercise routine and making better food choices. Those choices, along with the medicine my doctor prescribed (Janumet) did improve my situation as I wrote about here.

After 4 months on my new routine, my morning blood sugar measurements did come down to the “normal” range for a Type 2 Diabetic (below 120 mg/dL) as you can see from the graph below and I lost 10 pounds of the 25 pounds that I needed to lose (as compared to my lowest adult weight when I was in my 30’s and running 5 times a week).

blood sugar 4 months post diagnosis

But that wasn’t enough for me. I hated taking the Janumet because of the side effects that came along with it (unpredictable diarrhea). I told my doctor that I wanted to get off this medicine and find a way to get my blood sugar measurements in the normal range for someone without Type 2 Diabetes.   He politely told me that I should get used to taking these 2 pills every day because this problem was genetic for me (my dad and most of his brothers also had Type 2 Diabetes). My doctor didn’t know me too well and he didn’t realize that I am not wired to accept the status quo without doing my due diligence first!

Thanks to a comment in that 4-month post diagnosis blog post, I was turned onto a study that showed how people could have normal blood sugar measurements without medication. That study, found here, was the 1st trigger that started me on a longer and deeper study into how our bodies operate and how the types of food we eat and the lifestyle we choose affect our overall health more than genetics.

After a month of research I decided to try this low calorie, low carbohydrate diet for a few weeks to see if it would work. What did I have to lose? My current lifestyle was being compromised due to the side effects of the Janumet so going off the meds for a few weeks and suffering through this very restrictive diet was a small risk considering the possible benefits the study promised.

As I wrote about here, I only needed to stay on that diet for a week before my blood sugar measurements were within the normal range of someone who didn’t have Type 2 Diabetes. And all this with no medication!

blood sugar measurements post diet

It should be noted that I lost another 10 pounds during the week I was on this diet and for all intents and purposes I was back to my ideal weight for my body type.

It was during that time I was on this diet that a co-worker mentioned the Paleo diet as a way I could eats foods that controlled my blood sugar levels but also allowed me to exercise and function normally (because living on 700 calories a day, as the diet prescribed, is no way to go through the rest of my life). This was the second trigger that started me on a journey that led me to a lifestyle that allowed me not to just survive but to thrive.

I read Robb Wolf’s “The Paleo Solution” and slowly over the course of several months adopted that lifestyle. I say “lifestyle” instead of “diet” because Paleo is a lifestyle change. It’s not only about the diet of eating only natural meats, fruits, vegetables, seafood, nuts, seeds and healthy fats, it’s about getting enough sleep (at least 7 hours), exercising the right way (lift heavy stuff and run fast) and simplifying your life by eliminating unnecessary stress.

My adoption of the full Paleo lifestyle starting when I eliminated grains, then a couple months later I eliminated legumes and processed food and I finished up by eliminating all dairy products and adding daily fish oil pills to my diet. During this journey I also altered my exercise routine to add high intensity workouts and tried as best I could to get at least 7 hours of sleep every night.

The results speak for themselves – A1C is normal for someone without Type 2 Diabetes, I’ve lost 25 pounds since my diagnosis, cholesterol and other markers are all normal and I now have the energy I had when I was in my 20’s (I’m comfortably in my 40’s now!).

I still can’t explain the drastic step function drop in blood sugar measurements that I saw in June 2014 (as outlined here) and as you can see from the graphs below (the green line shows a normal reading for someone without Type 2 Diabetes), this change was permanent and not transient.

unexplained improvement morning

unexplained improvement evening

I can only hypothesize that after months on the Paleo lifestyle my body “reset” in some fashion where my insulin sensitivity improved. It pains me that I can’t assign a cause to this but I’ll still take the benefit anyway!

If there is anyone who is coming to grips with their Type 2 Diabetes diagnosis, I hope this post finds them and they can learn from me as I have learned from others how to improve my life without medication.

A Type 2 Diabetes diagnosis is not a death sentence but instead a wake up call for those who are willing to confront the brutal facts, analyze the data and adopt a lifestyle that complements the way our bodies were designed.

Posted in Diabetes | 3 Comments

Tampered Climate Data

It’s no secret how the Anthropogenic Global Warming (AGW) cult “scientists” fool the uninformed into thinking man-made CO2 emissions are warming the planet – They alter the temperature data of the past.

The evidence of this is hiding in plain sight and can be obtained by downloading the data to Excel and the instructions for finding this data are found here.

Using the GISS data, I’ve picked five [5] US temperature monitoring stations at random to demonstrate this “trick” the AGW cult uses and I’ll present both the raw and adjusted data in the following graphs.

Charlotte raw and adjusted data:

charlotteNome raw and adjusted data:

nomeBoulder raw and adjusted data:

boulderLodi raw and adjusted data:

lodiWilliams raw and adjusted data:

williamsDid you notice how all the data adjustments were done to show cooling in the past and warming in the present?

It’s amazing how much knowledge the AGW cult has of the way these weather stations measured temperatures 80 to 110 years ago.

It’s weird, right?

Posted in Climate Change | 2 Comments

NPR’s New Found Interest In Gov Scott Walker

Scott Walker must be the current GOP front runner for 2016.

How do I know this? Is it because of this Hotair article?

“One of the major takeaways from the Des Moines Register poll of the GOP primary electorate that found Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker surging ahead of the pack in the Hawkeye State is his apparent appeal to both the Republican Party’s conservative and moderate wings.”

No, it’s because NPR has put out two stories (here and here) on Gov. Walker in the last 2 days.

npr1

npr2

Before 02-FEB-15, you have to go back to the end of October 2014 to find the last time NPR had a story dedicated to Walker. But yet now, after a great weekend in Iowa where he appears to be the front runner, NPR blasts out 2 hit pieces in two days!

It’s almost like the stories are coordinated or something.

Weird!

Posted in npr, politics | 7 Comments

The Do Nothing White House

Obama once told Republicans that “the Election is over” and they should just roll over and accept his agenda but thanks to this story, NPR tells us how it’s now totally OK now for Obama to fight the results of the past election and use his veto early and often.

“President Obama is about to get his first veto opportunity of the new Congress. A bill that would approve the Keystone XL pipeline project will be on his desk soon. He has promised to veto it, and that’s unusual. In his first six years in office, Obama issued just two vetoes — the fewest of any president going all the way back to James Garfield, and Garfield only served 199 days in office! But with the Republican takeover of both chambers of Congress, that will change. Here are four reasons why:”

NPR seems blown away with the fact that Obama has only issued 2 vetoes while in office. Of course this is a mystery only to NPR as everyone else knows quite well why Obama hasn’t had to issue more vetoes – For the past 6 years we’ve had an obstructionist Senate presided over by Harry Reid that shut down any legislation that wasn’t handpicked by Obama.

And Obama isn’t following his own advice about working with the other side after an election that can only be described as a mandate.

“According to political scientists who study this, historically, 90 percent of veto threats are issued privately, behind the scenes. Obama appears to be breaking with that tradition. He has issued nine veto threats so far — in public.”

Nothing says “I’m willing to work with the other side” quite like publicly threatening the other side. Chicago politics…

But in reality I’m hopeful Obama has to issue a slew of Vetoes in the next 2 years.

The day after the Republican’s sweeping election win last November I made the comment that I hoped they would send legislation to Obama every 2 weeks. Keystone XL, repealing the Medical Device Tax, reforming Dodd-Frank, Corporate Tax reforms, cutting spending on Entitlement programs, Fair Tax, etc.

If the Republicans are smart, they’ll follow my advice and every time they get in front of a microphone they can bemoan the “Do Nothing White House” and blame all economic woes on the inability of the President to come to terms with the fact that the election is over.

Posted in politics | 3 Comments

All Of Paraguay’s Temperature Record Has Been Tampered With

cosmoscon:

This is exactly why I call the AGW cult criminals.

Originally posted on NOT A LOT OF PEOPLE KNOW THAT:

By Paul Homewood

th

Just when you thought it could not get any worse!

After identifying that all of the three rural stations currently operational in Paraguay had had huge warming adjustments made to their data since the 1950’s, I tended to assume that they had been homogenised against some of the nearby urban stations. Ones like Asuncion Airport, which shows steady warming since the mid 20thC.

station

http://data.giss.nasa.gov/cgi-bin/gistemp/show_station.cgi?id=308862180000&dt=1&ds=12

Aeropuerto_de_Asunción_Paraguay_by_Felipe_Méndez

Asuncion Airport

Silly me! When I went back to check the raw data, it turns out all of the urban sites had been tampered with in just the same way as the rural ones.

View original 287 more words

Posted in Climate Change | 1 Comment

Type 2 Diabetes Reversal – 15 Month Update

It’s been 15 months since I reversed my Type 2 Diabetes by slowly adopting a Paleo lifestyle and there are a couple of items I’d like to write about.

First, the unexplainable step function shift in my morning blood sugar measurements that happened in June 2014 appears to be sustainable as you can see from this graph below (the red line signifies the point where my blood sugar measurements shifted).

blood sugar measurements

For those new to my blog, you can see how bad my Type 2 Diabetes was in early 2013 (fasting measurements in the 350 mg/dL range) and how the medication (Janumet) brought them down in the 120 mg/dL range but then dropped to a high normal range once I went off the medication and started the Paleo adoption in September 2013.

My morning blood sugar measurements averaged 100.4 mg/dL from September 2013 until June 2014 (which is considered high normal) but then dropped to an average of 90.4 mg/dL after June and this measurement is considered normal for someone who doesn’t have Type 2 Diabetes.

I still can’t explain what caused this shift as there was no change in my diet or exercise routine around that time frame but I think my body finally responded to the months of slowly transitioning to a full Paleo lifestyle and my insulin sensitivity improved to the point where my average morning blood sugar measurements are indistinguishable from someone who doesn’t have Type 2 Diabetes.

My other recent discovery involves maple syrup.

One of my favorite breakfast foods, pancakes, had to be eliminated once I adopted the Paleo lifestyle (grains are off limits on the Paleo diet) but eventually I substituted almond flour pancakes and this somewhat satisfied my cravings for this wonderful breakfast comfort food.

I say “somewhat” because I still couldn’t use syrup on the pancakes due to the high sugar content that would spike by blood sugar measurements. But this week I decided to perform an experiment with real maple syrup to see what effects it had on my blood sugar measurements. .

For three straight days I ate a breakfast that consisted of 2 almond flour pancakes (1 cup of almond flour, 1 egg, water, cinnamon and nutmeg), 3 eggs, 3 sausage patties and ¼ cup of real maple syrup on the pancakes. Note that I didn’t use the standard grocery store maple syrup that is loaded with high fructose corn syrup – I used REAL maple syrup with no additives (For those interested, I used this one).

I took my blood sugar measurement 2 to 3 hours after each of these breakfast meals and I’m happy to report that they were NORMAL – 108, 82 and 94 mg/dL respectively.

This maple syrup has 53g of carbs and 47g of sugars in a ¼ cup serving and that amount of carbs/sugars is normally equivalent to about a whole day’s intake for me but in spite of these high carb/sugar meals, there was no spike in my blood sugar measurements. A normal blood sugar measurement for a non-diabetic can be around 100 -130 mg/dL 2 to 3 hours after a meal and my measurements were well below this. Two of the measurements were actually normal for a fasting measurement!

Was this due to my body’s improved insulin sensitivity or due to the fact that I ate NATURAL sugars and not processed ones? Probably a little of both, but I’m just happy to report that I can now enjoy one of my favorite breakfast foods again!

If you are looking to improve your health in 2015, I wholeheartedly suggest you read up on the Paleo lifestyle (start here) and give it a shot for 30 to 60 days.

Posted in Diabetes | 5 Comments

Global Temperature Update – December 2014

Earlier this month world leaders gathered in Peru to discuss how they combat a manufactured problem they now call “Climate Change” (previously called Anthropogenic Global Warming – AGW) and the results were on par with the myriad of previous meetings:

From NPR :

“Most of the world’s governments at a meeting in Lima, Peru, managed to agree yesterday on a new document aimed at curbing climate change. Hundreds of the negotiators who wrote it say the document, which goes to Paris a year from now for final approval, has serious shortcomings. But U.N. climate executive Christiana Figueres says it’s the thought that counts.”

In other words, nothing will be done and in my opinion this is a good thing. The final comment from the NPR story tells you what the real motivation is behind this manufactured crisis (emphasis mine):

“In the end, the basic principle survived. Everyone participates, but developed countries must shoulder most of the burden. There will be more money for developing countries. Details of how this all will work – and there were many pages of them – remained unresolved. But negotiators have a year to wrestle them into submission before the deadline in Paris.”

Make no mistake about it; the driving force behind the AGW cult propaganda is to get developed nations to funnel money to 3rd world countries. It’s always been about this no matter what Al Gore or any of the other cult leaders say.

Now let’s look at the data to see why I call this so-called “climate Change” problem a manufactured crisis.

I’ll graph the global temperature anomalies from three [3] global temperature data sets – The University of East Anglia Climate Research Unit (CRU), the Remote Sensing System (RSS) and the University of Alabama-Huntsville. (NOTE – The CRU data version 3 (HADCRUT3) that I’ve been using for years was abandoned by CRU in May of 2014 so I started using their latest data set (HADCRUT4) for data starting in January 2014.)

Before viewing my graphs, keep in mind that in 2007 the AGW cult predicted that if we continued to pump an additional 3 ppm of CO2 into the atmosphere every year (what we’re doing right now) then we’d see temperature increases of 0.2°C per decade. That equates to a temperature rise of 0.007°C per ppm of atmospheric CO2 and 0.0017°C per month.

Here are the temperature graphs for the past 17 years.

cru

rss

uah

As you can see from above, the Earth’s global temperature anomalies have been flat for the past 17+ years and the anticipated increase of 0.0017C per month isn’t even close to what we are seeing – The AGW cult’s estimate overstated the actual warming by over 5.5 times for the CRU data (0.0003°C/month vs 0.0017°C/month) and almost 2.5 times for the UAH data (0.0007°C/month vs 0.0017°C/month. The RSS data had a NEGATIVE temperature trend for the past 17 years (-0.00007°C/month) so the climate scientists really missed the mark on that one!

Just to show how wrong the AGW cult is, here is a graph showing the AGW cult predictions as compared to the trends of the three actual global temperature data sets. I started all trend lines at the same point (0.151°C from the CRU data set in January of 1997) and used the slopes of the AGW cult predictions (0.0017°C/month), the CRU (0.0003°C/month), the RSS (-0.00007°C/month) and the UAH (0.0007°C/month).

temperature trends

Now let’s compare each of these temperature anomalies to the atmospheric CO2 concentrations as measured from the Mauna Loa research station.

cru vs co2

rss vs co2

uah vs co2

Although the predictions called for a temperature rise of 0.007°C per ppm of CO2, the CRU, RSS, UAH and Mauna Loa data didn’t get that memo.   The “Science Is Settled” team was off by a factor of 3.7 per the CRU data and a factor of 2 per the UAH data. The RSS data totally disproved the AGW cult team’s thesis since that data showed a NEGATIVE correlation with CO2 (-0.0006°C per ppm of CO2)!

For those who think I’m “cherry picking” the 17 year time frame, you need to read this peer reviewed paper. It clearly states that we need at least 17 years to gauge the effects of man-made CO2 effects on global temperatures and that is exactly what I’m doing.

“Our results show that temperature records of at least 17 years in length are required for identifying human effects on global-mean tropospheric temperature.”

The AGW cult holds peer reviewed papers up as their holy texts and it must really stink when their most trusted weapons are used against them!

We don’t have to rely solely on global temperature anomalies to show how the AGW cult climate scientists totally missed this one. Global sea ice extent graphs of the Arctic are within the +/- 2 standard deviations of 1981-2010 and the Antarctic is ABOVE those levels.

arctic ice

antarctic ice

And it gets worse…

US hurricane strikes have decreased with additional atmospheric CO2, The US has now experienced its longest drought of major hurricane landfall in history, Violent tornadoes have decreased in the US, US forrest fires are down and droughts in the US are at historic lows.

It’s like the AGW cult climate scientists don’t think we know how to use Google or something.

Posted in Climate Change | 2 Comments

A Tough Prayer

As a Christian, I’m a firm believer in the power of our prayers but there is one particular prayer that I am fearful of uttering.

Sure, I pray for the health and protection of my family, revival in my country, growth for my church and things like that but after hearing the song “Oceans” by Hillsong United I was struck with a specific prayer request.

Here’s the full song and if you haven’t heard it, go ahead and spend about 7 minutes listening to the gifted Taya Smith:

Here are the verses that I can’t seem to stop thinking about:

“Spirit lead me where my trust is without borders”

“Let me walk upon the waters wherever You would call me”

“Take me deeper than my feet could ever wander”

“And my faith will be made stronger in the presence of my Savior”

Are you ready to pray for God to take you to a place where your trust in Him is so great that you surrender your life totally to Him?

Are you ready for God to take you to a place where you would NEVER willingly go?

Think back to those in Scripture that exemplified this description of willingly turning over their entire life to God.

Saul, originally a persecutor of Christians, became the Apostle Paul and was eventually executed for following Jesus.

Moses, Jonah and Jeremiah had the unfortunate tasks of speaking truth to power in following the will of God and they hardly led lives of comfort.

All but 2 of the original 12 Disciples ended up being executed for their insistence on preaching the Gospel.

And we don’t have to look to biblical times to see examples of people turning their lives over to Christ. We don’t just have folks like Martin Luther and Mother Theresa, I bet you can name several people that you know personally who have answered the call and given their lives over to Christ fully. I would bet that you’d tell me they didn’t lead a life of leisure and comfort but instead lived a life of persecution.

Of course we are commanded to follow God’s will and there is plenty of scripture to back that up:

“I delight to do Your will, O my God; Your law is within my heart.” – Psalms 40:8

“Teach me to do Your will, For You are my God; Let Your good Spirit lead me on level ground.” – Psalms 143:10

“Your kingdom come Your will be done, On earth as it is in heaven.” – Matthew 6:10

But I’m still scared to utter this prayer.

Does that make me a bad Christian for not wanting to do what God would have me to do?

Maybe, but I think if you aren’t even a little bit scared to ask God to take over your life completely then you don’t fully comprehend the power God has to transform your life.

Posted in christianity | 1 Comment

Stuff Dictators Say

On Thursday President Obama is set to take executive action on Immigration Reform and you have to be a true low information voter to not see through this sham.

Obama’s quote from CNN:

Obama – “And so what I’m going to be laying out is the things that I can do with my lawful authority as President to make the system work better, even as I continue to work with Congress to encourage them to get a bipartisan, comprehensive bill that can solve the entire problem.”

After all the rhetoric is over, what Obama will really announce is that he will be selectively choosing which immigration laws to stop enforcing. Obama thinks choosing which laws to enforce falls into the category of “things that I can do with my lawful authority as President.”

What a dangerous precedent he is setting here!  And I hope Democrats remember this in 2017.

When Scott Walker becomes President then he can refuse to enforce the rulings of the National Labor Relations Board and proceed to allow states to bust up Public Service Unions.

The next Republican POTUS can instruct the IRS to not enforce the Medical Device Tax.

How about refusing to enforce the employer mandate for Obamacare too?

While we’re at it, let’s instruct the IRS to not collect Corporate Income taxes!

This can be fun!

Posted in politics | 1 Comment

A Special Run In My New Shoes

I’ve been running in the same make/model shoe for over 14 years – The Brooks Adrenaline GTS – and Friday was the first time I ever bought them in a color combination that differed from the standard blue/white/silver.

shoes

Saturday’s run in these shoes was special but not for the reason I said above. The run was special because I was running with my daughter who recently “officially” became a runner.

How did she “officially” become’ a runner? Before I get to that, here’s some history.

My daughter is 13 years old and admittedly the memories of her time as a baby are a little fuzzy but it seems to me that she ran before she walked. Once she figured out how to move around on two legs versus all fours she ran everywhere. And it wasn’t the gangly toddler type of running. She ran with almost perfect form!

Being a father who loves sports, the visions of soccer or lacrosse college scholarships ran through my head so we didn’t wait too long before signing her up for sports.

During soccer and lacrosse practices it was very apparent that my daughter was the fastest kid on the field. During drills involving pure running she’d always finish first. Even when she was in a U6 co-ed soccer league she was faster than the boys. Parents always must restrain their adoration of their child because we are biased but on the field of competition the kid’s true talent will either be apparent or reality will smack the parents in the face.

But alas team sports were not her thing. My daughter’s athletic skills during practice didn’t translate to the white hot pressure cooker of game day. She didn’t like the attention afforded her when she’d break from the pack and I’d see her slowing up to allow others to catch her so she wouldn’t be the object of everyone’s attention. My daughter’s compassion level is off the charts but her aggressiveness is in the negative territory and she was more interested in making sure everyone on the field had a good time than beating another kid for the ball.

This was frustrating. When I said my daughter ran everywhere I am not exaggerating. She ran to the kitchen. She ran to the bedroom. She ran in the parking lot. She ran in church. It was hard for me to come to terms with the disconnect that I had to yell at her all the time to stop running in public places but when she got on the field of competition she would just prance around the action. After 2 seasons of soccer and 2 seasons of lacrosse my wife and I came to the conclusion that team sports weren’t our daughter’s thing and we should just get over it!

When she entered 8th grade we encouraged her to join the running club and every Monday, Tuesday and Thursday after school the club stays after school to engage in cross country type running drills. It’s not a true cross country team but the program is meant to get kids acclimated to that type of training prior to high school.

After a month or so of steady progression my daughter had a breakthrough last week when the coach challenged the kids to run a mile without stopping and my daughter was one of the few who were able to do that. She was so excited to tell me about this milestone that she informed me that she wanted to run a marathon!

She and I had a long talk about the stress of training for a marathon and how that probably isn’t good for her 13 year old body right now but we can start running 5K’s together and see how that goes and then take up the mileage as she matures.

That was the first time when it hit me that she may actually become one of those weird “runner” creatures like her dad.

A couple of days later my daughter said that she hasn’t been able to run much this week and she wanted to run on Friday after school – Alone, by herself, on the streets of our neighborhood – and sure enough, she ran a short out-and-back 1.2 miles Friday on her own.

That was it! That was the exact moment my daughter “officially” became a runner.

She missed running so much that she wanted to do it on her own time. She could’ve spent that time on her iPad or watching her mindless Disney shows but she decided to lace up her shoes and head out the door for a run.

That is what separates people who run because they HAVE to (in PE, because their parents force them or because a coach tells you to) from people who run because they WANT to. Runners do it for the joy. Runners do it because they like the way they feel during and after a nice run. Runners miss the days they can’t run.

After her 1.2 mile run on Friday my daughter told me that she wanted to run a 2.5 mile course with me on Saturday. <Heart melts>

That run with my daughter was what made my Saturday run so special. It had nothing to do with the shoes but with the person who was running at my side.

I’ve been a runner for over 15 years and I have tons of race t-shirts, finisher medals and bibs lining my drawers in the closet to prove it. I have completed a marathon, organized local races and served in leadership capacities with a local running club so I’ve experienced many highs from this great lifestyle but nothing compared to the day I got the privilege of running with my daughter who recently, like her dad did 15 years ago, decided to become a runner.

During the past 13 years my daughter has watched her dad put on his shoes and go out the door with regularity all through the year in all kinds of weather. She watched me run races early on Thanksgiving, don rain gear to run in a heavy downpour, get up at the crack of dawn on a Saturday to run a race and even run in the rare instance where we get snow down here.

During the Saturday run with my daughter, I kept coming back to something I had noticed these past 13 years. Whenever I got back to the house after each of my races my daughter would always ask me if I won. Of course the answer was always “no” because I’m a very slow runner but she never stopped asking that question.

Silly me thought that she just shook her head and laughed at me while I participated in these seemingly meaningless races (that I NEVER won) but maybe, just maybe, she asked this question for another reason. Maybe she noticed how much joy I got out of running even though I never won any races. Running might not be about the awards but more about the simple act of just running.

She had to have noticed and now she’s joined the club!

 

Posted in sports | 1 Comment

I Still Can’t Explain This

I’m a Type 2 Diabetic and back in July I wrote about how something odd had happened the month before with my blood sugar measurements and by “odd”, I meant good!

Well, it’s been 6 months since that apparent step function down in blood sugar measurements and I’m happy to report that this oddity is now the new normal.

morning blood sugar

evening blood sugar

It is clear from both graphs that the change happened in early June and both morning and evening measurements saw this improvement. With the exception of two spikes (that I explained here and here) my blood sugar measurements are right in the middle of a normal range for someone without Diabetes.

While it is great news that this improvement wasn’t an anomaly, the bad news is I still can’t explain it.

I still follow the same Paleo lifestyle these past 6 months as I did 6 months prior to this change and there was no assignable cause to this.

Did it take that much time of eliminating grains, legumes and dairy to finally allow my body to function the way it was intended to?

Was there some food I subtly eliminated that I didn’t log?

As someone who is a slave to the data, it pains me that I can’t assign a cause to this.

Make no mistake about it – I’m still a Type 2 Diabetic. I periodically test my body out by eating a potato, tortilla or piece of bread to see how my body reacts and sure enough my blood sugars rise above the normal range. My insulin sensitivity has drastically improved but I’m most certainly still a Type 2 Diabetic. But here’s the thing – Even if my body were to totally reset itself, based on my increased energy levels and overall general health, I’d never go back to the way I used to be (eating grains, legumes and dairy).

I’ve been following this Paleo lifestyle in varying degrees for over a year now and I still have more questions than answers but my data clearly show that a Paleo lifestyle can allow a Type 2 Diabetic to have blood sugar measurements in the normal range without medication.

Posted in Diabetes | 3 Comments

No, The Economy Isn’t Doing Great

The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) issued its October Jobs Report last week and the Unemployment Rate ticked down to 5.8%.

But don’t get too giddy.

As NPR reports, the economic metrics that matter most to Americans are still awaiting this mythical recovery that Team Obama keeps talking about.

Wages

“Linda Barrington, executive director of the Institute for Compensation Studies at Cornell University, says they’ve been inching up, barely.”

“Wages and inflation are sort of going hand in hand and have been since the recession, so people aren’t feeling like they’re getting ahead, even if they have a job,” she says.”

Long Term Unemployment Rate

“You know, when you see the longer-term unemployment numbers, those are people who have not given up, who continue to look for work, who want to work,” she says. “But for some reason an employer isn’t seeing what they’re bringing as valuable enough to hire them.”

Labor Force Participation Rate

“A lot of people are giving up,” she says. “They’re not even in the numbers; they’re not in the count. They’ve been looking for jobs for so long and can’t find the jobs that they’re simply not even trying anymore. And that is why you see this [unemployment rate] number below 6 percent looking better than it really is.”

Quit Rate

“The quit rate is still relatively low. Economist Tara Sinclair, with the jobs website Indeed, says we actually want more people quitting their jobs.”

“The reason it’s a good thing for people to be quitting their job is because that suggests that they’re optimistic about their labor market choices,” she says.”

People Who Would Rather Be Employed Full Time

“That number is still very elevated, which suggests that even though the employment numbers look pretty good, if people aren’t getting the type of job that they want there’s still room for improvement,” Sinclair says.”

It’s odd that nowhere in this NPR article does the author attempt to arrive at reasons why we are still waiting for that much expected recovery from the latest recession.

Nothing about increased government regulation, a Federal takeover of the US healthcare system, the highest corporate tax rate in the world, ballooning national debt or exploding entitlement programs.

It’s like these lingering economic problems are just the result of dumb luck or something.
It probably has nothing to do with the guy who has resided at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue for the past 6 years.

At least not according to NPR.
 

Posted in economics, npr, politics | 5 Comments