Dr. Joseph E. Murray, who opened a new era of medicine with the first successful human organ transplant, died on Monday. He was 93 and lived in Wellesley and Edgartown, Mass. He died in Boston at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, where he performed his first transplant, said Tom Langford, a hospital spokesman. The cause was complications from a stroke he suffered on Thursday, Mr. Langford said. Dr. Murray’s groundbreaking surgical feat came in 1954, when he removed a healthy kidney from a 23-year-old man and implanted it in his ailing identical twin.
Comments: A true medical pioneer.
As a side note, under 0bamacare, it´ll be interesting in the days ahead to see who and how organs are distributed. We will finally get to see the "death panels" in action, but accountable to no one.
Sen. John Cornyn gives the Republican Party´s Weekly Remarks: Hi, I’m Texas Senator John Cornyn. Every day, Capitol Hill police officers protect Members of Congress, and our visiting guests, with courage, dignity, and professionalism. Their tireless efforts often go unnoticed; but whenever they’re called upon to act in a moment of crisis, we’re reminded of their tremendous commitment and bravery. I want to take this opportunity to thank the Capitol Hill police for all that they do to protect our collective safety and security. Like most Americans, I was disappointed when certain parts of the federal
President Obama´s weekly remarks: Good morning. Earlier this week, the Republican House of Representatives chose to shut down a government they don’t like over a health care law they don’t like. And I’ve talked a lot about the real-world consequences of this shutdown in recent days — the services disrupted; the benefits delayed; the public servants kicked off the job without pay. But today, I want to let the Americans dealing with those real-world consequences have their say. And these are just a few of the many heartbreaking letters I’ve gotten from them in the past couple weeks — including
The National Security Agency has made repeated attempts to develop attacks against people using Tor, a popular tool designed to protect online anonymity, despite the fact the software is primarily funded and promoted by the US government itself. Top-secret NSA documents, disclosed by whistleblower Edward Snowden, reveal that the agency´s current successes against Tor rely on identifying users and then attacking vulnerable software on their computers. One technique developed by the agency targeted the Firefox web browser used with Tor, giving the agency full control over targets´
Just for the record, Texas Gov. Rick Perry said midway through a 27-minute criticism of California, he wasn’t in Anaheim to criticize California. (Snip) “The purpose of my visit is not to bash California,” he said on the first day of the state Republican Party convention. “This is a wonderful state with great innovative people.” But, he said, the very “future of the nation” depended on a blunt conversation about which course was best: California’s “big government, protectionist, nanny state” or Texas’ “limited-government, unsubsidized, freedom state.” Perry’s remarks centered on new jobs for
A new shape-changing metal crystal is reported in the journal Nature, by scientists at University of Minnesota. It is the prototype of a new family of smart materials that could be used in applications ranging from space vehicles to electronics to jet engines. Called a "martensite", the crystal has two different arrangements of atoms, switching seamlessly between them. It can change shape tens of thousands of times when heated and cooled without degrading, unlike existing technology. Currently, martensite metals are made of an alloyed mixture of nickel and titanium.
Clinton, NY - Hillary Rodham Clinton on Friday derided the partial government shutdown, saying dysfunction and gridlock are emblematic of too many people in politics choosing "scorched earth over common ground." (Snip) Recalling shutdowns during the mid-1990s, Clinton noted that her husband worked with then-House Speaker Newt Gingrich to find a way to reopen the government. Neither side got everything it wanted, she said, but it led to a balanced budget and economic growth. Clinton said the stalemate could have repercussions around the globe, noting that the shutdown
Vo Nguyen Giap, the relentless and charismatic North Vietnamese general whose campaigns drove both France and the United States out of Vietnam, died on Friday in Hanoi. He was believed to be 102. (Snip) General Giap was among the last survivors of a generation of Communist revolutionaries who in the postwar decades freed Vietnam of colonial rule and fought a superpower to a stalemate. In his later years, he was a living reminder of a war that was mostly old history to the Vietnamese, many of whom were born after it had ended. But he had not faded away.
Ankara - Turkey is likely to sign a $3.4 billion missile defence deal with a Chinese firm under U.S. sanctions, a senior official said on Thursday, a proposal that is already straining relations with Washington. Turkey sees a growing threat of spillover from the war in neighbouring Syria, as well as wider turbulence in the Middle East, and has been scrambling to bolster its air defences. (Snip) The United States has expressed "serious concerns" over North Atlantic Treaty Organisation member Turkey cooperating with CPMIEC, under sanctions for violations of the Iran, North Korea and Syria
Al-Shabaab, the Somali terrorist group behind a four-day attack on a Nairobi shopping mall, threatens U.S. embassies and interests in Africa and potentially on U.S. soil as well, counterterrorism analysts told Congress. The Westgate Mall attack last month showed al-Shabaab’s growing capacity to conduct sophisticated operations requiring careful planning and reconnaissance, Seth Jones, (Snip) That ability, coupled with the group’s use of online social media and “Jihad rap” recruitment videos on Google Inc. (GOOG)’s YouTube.com to attract young Americans, is a concern, Jones said at a panel hearing
Hold your nose and don´t spit out your coffee: Doctors have found a way to put healthy people´s poop into pills that can cure serious gut infections - a less yucky way to do "fecal transplants." Canadian researchers tried this on 27 patients and cured them all after strong antibiotics failed to help. It´s a gross topic but a serious problem. Half a million Americans get Clostridium difficile, or C-diff, infections each year, and about 14,000 die. The germ causes nausea, cramping and diarrhea so bad it is often disabling. A very potent and pricey antibiotic can kill C-diff but also destroys good bacteria that
With the government shuttered and a deadline for raising the debt limit just two weeks off, anxious Republicans began steering the party away from a dead-end debate about the health-care law and toward discussion of a broader deal to reduce the nation’s debt. (Snip) In meetings with small groups of rank-and-file lawmakers, House Speaker John A. Boehner (R-Ohio) has emphasized that he will not permit the country to default for the first time on its debt. Given that a bloc of hard-line conservatives is unlikely to vote to increase the limit under any circumstances, Boehner has told fellow Republicans that
The quality of Twitter´s newly released financial information is such a mishmash that even grizzled financial writers are willing to borrow a trick from Sex and the City, where each episode was built around a question that anchored the weekly column of its heroine Carrie Bradshaw. We know what the ticker symbol will be -- TWTR, but do we know how you can play Twitter´s initial public offering without looking like a twit? (Snip) Look, the twit would be the investor who doesn´t realize that Twitter will be a hot deal, regardless. Even if the company commands less than the $14 billion valuation it
Some Catholic priests under contract or GS (general schedule) to the military are not allowed to offer Mass or perform weddings, baptisms, and other religious functions on military property during the government shutdown, and if they do, even on a volunteer basis, they risk being arrested, according to the general counsel for the Archdiocese for the Military Services, USA. About 25% of the U.S. military is Catholic, some 275,000 service members, but there are only 234-active-duty priests. To fill the gap, contract or GS priests are brought in. But under the rules of the shutdown, many of those priests cannot
In case there´s any doubt as to who´s to blame for this outrage, a spokesman for National Park Service said the White House Office of Management and Budget ordered up the blockades.Even Bill Clinton didn´t have the audacity to try such a thing during the 1995 government shutdown.As the AP reported at the time, "tourists were free to wander the halls of the Capitol, touch the walls of the Vietnam Memorial and climb the steps of the Lincoln Memorial to read the Gettysburg Address — those and other similar sites don´t require supervision of federal employees." This isn´t the first time
National Park Service rangers are being ordered to “make life difficult” during the government shutdown, according to the Washington Times. After the shutdown began, park police have been barring tourists from a number of popular attractions nationwide, including the WWII memorial. Even privately-owned landmarks, such as Mount Vernon, are being told by the National Park Service to close their doors. The Times reported: The Park Service appears to be closing streets on mere whim and caprice. The rangers even closed the parking lot at Mount Vernon, where the plantation home of George Washington is a favorite tourist destination. That was after they barred
Because Barack Obama was elected on a campaign promise of “fundamentally transforming” the United States, and because our nation then proceeded to lose much of its international influence and domestic economic dynamism, it is easy to say “this is intentional. It’s just what he wants.” Yet while Obama might, in his heart of hearts, not bemoan the loss of jobs and economic growth at home, and American power and prestige abroad, ascribing it to an intentional effort gives Obama credit for qualities and skills he does not possess. Neocon David Horowitz entitled a recent fundraising letter for his Freedom Center “Urgent: Is
The bizarre attack at the White House and Capitol today was reportedly perpetrated by a 34-year-old dental hygienist licensed in Connecticut. Miriam Carey, who was killed by law enforcement after ramming White House barricades and fleeing to the Capitol, had a toddler in the car with her, according to New York Post reporting: Sources said Miriam Carey, who formerly lived in Brooklyn, was licensed to practice in New York and Connecticut and had a permit to work as a hygienist in Connecticut prisons. At least a dozen gunshots were fired when she tried to flee cops, who had trapped her two blocks
Tom Hanks is already declaring his presidential pick for 2016, there’s just one, small problem: a little thing called term limits. The star of “Captain Phillips,” told ITK at the soon-to-be-released film’s Wednesday premiere at the Newseum in Washington, “I’m voting for Barack Obama — 2016.” A laughing Hanks, who supported Obama during his 2008 White House bid, added, “Yes, I am! Four more years.” The Academy Award winner, 57, plays Captain Richard Phillips in the flick, based on the seaman’s book on the real-life 2009 hijacking of his cargo ship by Somali pirates. Hanks told ITK it was an
President Obama’s approval rating has dropped to one of the lowest levels in two years. Since the government shutdown Tuesday, Obama’s approval rating has slipped 3 percentage points to 41 percent, while his disapproval went up to 52 percent, according to Gallup’s daily numbers. Reuters also polled a 41 percent approval rating in the same time period. Rasmussen Reports said he had 46 percent approval, and Fox News recorded it at 45 percent. Gallup hasn´t recorded that low an approval rating for Obama since 2011. The pollster´s surveys in September showed 44 percent approved of the president’s job. The federal
On Tuesday morning, seven National Park Service employees were seen erecting and tending to a barricade around the World War II memorial in Washington, D.C. One NPS employee was operating a forklift. There usually aren´t any NPS employees working at the World War II memorial. A couple hours later, when an Honor Flight of World War II veterans arrived, accompanied by Democratic and Republican members of Congress, the fences blocking the memorial were easily moved away, allowing the veterans to enter. But the barriers are still at the memorial, and they´ve been reinforced. This morning, I walked by the memorial and noticed
Washington - President Barack Obama says that if he owned the Washington Redskins, he would "think about changing" the team name, wading into the controversy over a football nickname that many people deem offensive to Native Americans. Obama, in an interview with The Associated Press, said team names like the Redskins offend "a sizable group of people." He said that while fans get attached to the nicknames, nostalgia may not be a good enough reason to keep them in place. "I don't know whether our attachment to a particular name should override the real legitimate concerns that people
WASHINGTON — Republican efforts to resolve the fiscal standoff that has closed much of the federal government heated up Thursday, the third day of the shutdown, with new talks over a broad budget deal and an effort by more moderate House members to break the logjam. Representative Paul D. Ryan of Wisconsin, chairman of the House Budget Committee, has initiated conversations with senior House Republicans on a broad deficit reduction deal that would allow some increases to federal programs squeezed by the automatic cuts known as sequestration in exchange for long-term changes to programs like Medicare and Social Security. The
According to Politico: Ted Cruz faced a barrage of hostile questions Wednesday from angry GOP senators, who lashed the Texas tea party freshman for helping prompt a government shutdown crisis without a strategy to end it. At a closed-door lunch meeting in the Senate’s Mansfield Room, Republican after Republican pressed Cruz to explain how he would propose to end the bitter budget impasse with Democrats, according to senators who attended the meeting. A defensive Cruz had no clear plan to force an end to the shutdown — or explain how he would defund Obamacare, as he has demanded all along, sources said. The
American media outlets were finally able to track down a mythical creature — a person who actually signed up for the Obamacare exchanges online. But that person, Chad Henderson, admitted to the Washington Post that the premium for the plan he enrolled in was $175. Ouch! Wasn’t Obamacare supposed to lower premiums? Henderson’s going to pay a $175 premium and he won’t even receive vision or dental insurance. He has contacts, so not having vision insurance is kind of a bum deal. Henderson, as far as we know a healthy, 21-year-old college student at Chattanooga State Community College who lives in