News StoriesExcerpts of Key News Stories in Major Media
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A survey of school districts around the country finds that less than half test their water for lead, and among those that do more than a third detected elevated levels of the toxin. The report, released by the Government Accountability Office, is based on a survey of 549 school districts across the United States. It estimates that 41 percent of school districts, serving 12 million students, did not test for lead in the water in 2016 and 2017. Of the 43 percent that did test for lead, about 37 percent reported elevated levels. Sixteen percent of schools said they did not know whether they test for lead. A 2005 memorandum signed by the Environmental Protection Agency, the Department of Education and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention provides guidance to schools, including a testing protocol and suggestions for disseminating results, educating the school community about the risks and health effects of exposure and what actions should be taken to correct the problem. But there are still major information gaps, the report says, and no federal law that requires schools to test for lead.
Detaining immigrant children has morphed into a surging industry in the U.S. that now reaps $1 billion annually — a tenfold increase over the past decade. Health and Human Services grants for shelters, foster care and other child welfare services for detained unaccompanied and separated children soared from $74.5 million in 2007 to $958 million dollars in 2017. The agency is also reviewing a new round of proposals amid a growing effort by the White House to keep immigrant children in government custody. Currently, more than 11,800 children, from a few months old to 17, are housed in nearly 90 facilities in 15 states. By far the largest recipients of taxpayer money have been Southwest Key and Baptist Child & Family Services. From 2008 to date, Southwest Key has received $1.39 billion in grant funding to operate shelters; Baptist Child & Family Services has received $942 million. International Educational Services also was a big recipient, landing more than $72 million in the last fiscal year before folding amid a series of complaints about the conditions in its shelters. The recipients of the money run the gamut from nonprofits, religious organizations and for-profit entities. They are essentially government contractors for the Health and Human Services Department — the federal agency that administers the program keeping immigrant children in custody. In a recently released report, the State Department decried the general principle of holding children in shelters, saying it makes them inherently vulnerable.
Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing government corruption news articles from reliable major media sources.
For years, the soda industry had an ironclad strategy when a city wanted to enact a soda tax: Spend a lot of money, rally local businesses, and shoot it down. That strategy worked again and again, until it didn’t. In 2014, Berkeley, Calif., passed the nation’s first tax on sugary drinks. Since then, eight communities, including three more cities in California, enacted similar bills. Now ... instead of fighting the ordinances city by city, [the beverage industry] is turning to states, trying to pass laws preventing any local governments from taxing their products. In California, the legislature passed a bill Thursday that will pre-empt any new local beverage or food taxes for 12 years. Arizona and Michigan have passed similar laws. In Oregon, the state’s grocers have collected enough signatures to bring a ballot initiative barring any taxes on grocery items. And legislators are considering pre-emption bills in other states, including Pennsylvania, New Mexico and Washington. In California, the arrival of the bill to pre-empt soda taxes ... came as a shock. The state has passed more soda taxes than any other, shepherded by progressive lawmakers who see them as ... a tool to fight obesity and diabetes. “The irony is that the soda companies screamed very loudly about government overreach when soda taxes began to get passed,” said Kelly Brownell, the dean of the Sanford School of Public Policy at Duke University. “But now they are looking for the ultimate government overreach when it works in their favor.”
Note: Learn how healthcare groups in California are fighting this measure in this Los Angeles Times article. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on food system corruption and health.
Experts believe that the next generation of smartphones will be ruled by 5G networks. Even though 5G network will provide a much faster connection than 4G, a section of health experts believes that the hazards which may be caused by the updated service ... may turn potentially dangerous. Research conducted on cellphone radiations have fetched mixed results. Even though many studies have ruled out the possibility of health hazards due to cell phone radiation exposure, some extensive studies have hinted that older wireless service generations may result in various types of cancers, heart disorders, and reproductive issues. 5G connection makes use of millimetre waves (MMWs) to transmit data, rather than microwaves which are being used in previous generation networks. Dr Joel Moskowitz, a public health professor at the University of California, Berkeley reveals that millimetre waves could pose serious health hazards [to] the general public. "The deployment of 5G, or fifth generation cellular technology, constitutes a massive experiment on the health of all species. MMW bio-effects may be transmitted through molecular mechanisms by the skin or through the nervous system. 5G will use high-band frequencies, or millimetre waves, that may affect the eyes, the testes, the skin, the peripheral nervous system, and sweat glands," [said] Moskowitz. The health expert also added that millimetre waves used in 5G networks will make many pathogens resistant to antibiotics.
Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on the risks and dangers of wireless technologies.
Guantanamo Bay detainees who have been held for as long as 16 years without being charged cannot be imprisoned indefinitely, attorneys argued in federal court Wednesday. Speaking before U.S. District Judge Thomas Hogan in Washington, attorneys representing eight men detained at the military facility said the Trump administration had violated prisoners’ rights because it did not intend to try them or resettle them overseas. The case shines a light on the few remaining prisoners at Guantanamo, which President Trump has promised to keep open and potentially use to house new suspects, reversing his predecessor’s failed quest to shutter the facility. The men’s collective challenge ... is a reminder of the unsettled questions that continue to surround the prison, which for critics symbolizes what they see as excesses that followed the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001. At its peak, the military facility ... held more than 700 prisoners. After 2009, President Barack Obama, seeking to close the prison, resettled close to 200 more but was unable to overcome congressional opposition to shutting the prison. Two of the men whose challenge was heard Wednesday, Tofiq Nasser Awad al-Bihani and Abdul Latif Nasser, have already been deemed eligible for resettlement overseas by a government panel, but they remain at Guantanamo. Much of the hearing revolved around the government’s assertion that it could continue to hold the detainees until hostilities against the United States cease, no matter how long that takes.
Note: A letter written by Al Hajj, a Yemeni citizen detained without charges for over 15 years, sheds further light on the plight of these prisoners. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on corruption in government and in the intelligence community.
Georgia has concluded a year-long review of physician sexual misconduct cases brought to light by an Atlanta newspaper with a plan to educate doctors. The state's plan focuses on educating doctors, rather than seeking new patient protections as some states have done. Two-thirds of Georgia physicians disciplined for sexually violating patients were permitted to practice again by the Georgia Composite Medical Board. The board announced last year that it would review its handling of those cases. But instead of producing a comprehensive report, the board recently released a one-page statement. The board vowed that it will protect patients from Georgia doctors who "use coercion or power for sex" by educating doctors about the importance of reporting colleagues. It also said it would investigate all allegations and involve law enforcement when appropriate; and that it will discipline doctors with public consent orders and license revocations when allegations are proven. The board did not call for any changes in its rules or in state law even though the state lacks key patient protection measures. Among the gaps: Georgia has no law requiring doctors to report possible violations by their fellow doctors, nor is the medical board legally required to notify law enforcement of potential criminal acts.
Note: See a list of powerful articles revealing egregious and rampant sexual abuse by doctors around the US. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on sexual abuse scandals and health.
During a career spanning nearly 30 years in Georgia, Dr. William Almon has reinvented himself in numerous ways in numerous places. What hasn’t changed is his ability to practice medicine. In three different settings, Almon faced allegations that he sexually violated extremely vulnerable female patients — a suicidal soldier, jail inmates, a mentally ill woman and a child of 14 — and every time was effectively given a pass. Of the thousands of cases reviewed by The Atlanta Journal-Constitution in its investigation of physician sexual misconduct, few show the forces that protect offending doctors more dramatically. At Fort Gordon outside Augusta ... he admitted that he had sex with a hospitalized patient. The patient, a private, was found immediately afterward on the floor of her hospital room, curled up and crying. The Army ... allowed him to resign in lieu of facing a court-martial. At the Augusta jail ... he was charged with sexually abusing three inmates. prosecutors ultimately dropped the charges. And at WellStar’s East Paulding Primary Care Center, where Almon was hired even though corporate officials knew of his background, he was accused of molesting two patients. One was a woman who is schizophrenic. The other was a 14-year-old girl. The charges could have brought a prison sentence, but prosecutors allowed the doctor to plead no contest to misdemeanor counts of battery and sexual battery and receive probation. Then the Georgia Composite Medical Board negotiated an agreement that let him continue practicing.
In a national investigation, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution examined documents that described disturbing acts of physician sexual abuse in every state. Rapes by OB/GYNs, seductions by psychiatrists, fondling by anesthesiologists and ophthalmologists, and molestations by pediatricians and radiologists. A few physicians — with hundreds of victims — are among the nation’s worst sex offenders. The Roman Catholic Church, the military, the Boy Scouts, colleges and universities ... have all withered under the spotlight of sexual misconduct scandals and promised that abuse will no longer be swept under the rug. The medical profession, however, has never taken on sexual misconduct as a significant priority. And layer upon layer of secrecy makes it nearly impossible for the public, or even the medical community itself, to know the extent of physician sexual abuse. The AJC launched its national investigation a year ago after reaching a surprising finding in Georgia: two-thirds of the doctors disciplined in the state for sexual misconduct were permitted to practice again. Some states are apparently more forgiving than others when disciplining doctors in sexual misconduct cases. Georgia and Kansas, for example, allowed two of every three doctors publicly disciplined for sexual misconduct to return to practice. In Minnesota, it was four of every five. Nationwide, the AJC found that of the 2,400 doctors publicly disciplined for sexual misconduct, half still have active medical licenses today.
Note: If you live in the US, see how well your state does in protecting patients from sexual abuse using this chart. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on sexual abuse scandals and health.
In public, Louis William Bair was brilliant, warm and engaging. In private ... women would later tell of groping, of vulgar comments and of aggressive, closed-door sex in his office. Bair was a doctor, and the women were his patients. Sexual contact between doctors and patients in Colorado, as in other states, is prohibited. But when Bair drew the attention of the Colorado Medical Board in 2002, it wasn’t because of violations. It was because the governor chose him to serve on the board, where he could help judge disciplinary cases for other physicians. Bair’s dual existence illustrates one of the most surprising findings of an Atlanta Journal-Constitution investigation of sexual misconduct by doctors. Among those found to have sexually abused patients are some of the most accomplished and admired – revered, even – physicians in the country. Their violations range from subjecting patients to lewd remarks ... to rape. Often, despite significant evidence to the contrary, doctors balk at acknowledging they have done anything wrong , whether they have victimized a sole patient or hundreds. They may say they were helping their victims, or that they weren’t even doing anything sexual. Bair ... liked to revel in his sexual exploits, sipping scotch with his friend Kent Black, bragging about how good he was in bed. Black recounted to the investigator that he once warned Bair that someday, someone would turn him in. But ... Bair had a ready response: That was "'the benefit of sitting on the board,'" Bair quipped. "'You can quash this stuff'."
Two prominent California doctors, with bestselling books, insist we have the power to heal our own brains from diseases. They say it should start when we're young and begin with a look at the way we eat. Two women we spoke with who followed that advice say ... they reversed their early symptoms of Alzheimer's disease by making food and lifestyle changes based on research by neuroscientist Dr. Dale Bredesen. He wrote a book called "The End of Alzheimer's." "Two years ago, I scored mildly cognitively impaired on a cognitive assessment test," said Dr. Sally Weinrich. "Most recently, I scored perfect!" Weinrich, a former cancer researcher and grandmother, followed the Bredesen protocol for several months and is able to cook once again for her large family, pick up the grandkids from school and she's learning Spanish. Deborah, a very active mother of four and a lawyer, says, "Over a period of four to six months, the symptoms I was experiencing all reversed and I returned to my cognitive functioning that had been my norm when I was younger." She was able to recover her ability to sight-read notes when she plays the piano. Adda, an active 51-year-old grandmother, [said] that she improved her ability to think clearly and she lost almost 80 pounds after making dramatic food and lifestyle changes ... after she started working for cardiologist Dr. Steven Gundry nearly six years ago. He wrote a book called "The Plant Paradox."
Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.
China has reportedly reassigned over 60,000 soldiers to plant trees in a bid to combat pollution by increasing the country's forest coverage. A large regiment from the People's Liberation Army, along with some of the nation's armed police force, have been withdrawn from their posts on the northern border to work on non-military tasks inland. The majority will be dispatched to Hebei province, which encircles Beijing, according to the Asia Times. The area is known to be a major culprit for producing the notorious smog which blankets the capital city. The idea is believed to be popular among members of online military forums as long as they can keep their ranks and entitlements. It comes as part of China's plan to plant at least 84,000 square kilometres (32,400 square miles) of trees by the end of the year, which is roughly equivalent to the size of Ireland. The aim is to increase the country's forest coverage from 21 per cent of its total landmass to 23 per cent by 2020. Zhang Jianlong, head of China's State Forestry Administration, said by 2035 the figure could reach as high as 26 per cent."
Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.
Homegirl Cafe, a Los Angeles breakfast and lunch spot with a Latino twist, offers a unique dining experience prepared by former gang members. The popular cafe in the city's Chinatown allows visitors to relish carefully crafted meals while getting inspired by former inmates who willingly retell their stories about seeking a better life. The cafe is an offshoot of the Homeboy Industries social enterprises founded by Jesuit priest Greg Boyle to give former gang members job training and social services. Trainees learn all aspects of culinary arts while developing new social prowess that gives visitors a tender encounter. Plates like chilaquiles — fresh crisp tortilla chips tossed with warm tomatillo salsa, egg, crema fresca, and queso cotija — are made from ingredients that come straight from urban farms.
Note: Read more about Homeboy Industries' success in providing former gang members with a path to a better life. Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.
[Robert] Rook was allowed to keep his family practice open, so long as he’s chaperoned, despite facing multiple criminal charges for rape. Prosecutors subsequently downgraded the charges to more than 20 counts of sexual assault in the second- and third-degree, charges for which Rook says he is innocent. An Associated Press investigation finds that even as Hollywood moguls, elite journalists and politicians have been pushed out of their jobs or resigned amid allegations of sexual misconduct, the world of medicine is more forgiving. Even when doctors are disciplined, their punishment often consists of a short suspension paired with therapy that treats sexually abusive behavior as a symptom of an illness or addiction. The investigation finds that decades of complaints that the physician disciplinary system is too lenient have led to little change in the practices of state medical boards. The #MeToo campaign and the push to increase accountability for sexual misconduct in workplaces don't appear to have sparked a movement toward changing how medical boards deal with physicians who act out sexually against patients or staffers.
A new national investigation by The Atlanta Journal-Constitution has uncovered 450 cases of doctors who were brought before medical regulators or courts for sexual misconduct or sex crimes in 2016 and 2017. In nearly half of those cases, the AJC found, the doctors remain licensed to practice medicine, no matter whether the victims were patients or employees, adults or children. Even some doctors criminally convicted are back in practice, demonstrating that a system that forgives doctors — first exposed by the AJC in 2016 — has not changed. Dr. Richard Martin Roberts is still allowed to see patients in Texas even though a medical board disciplinary panel in November 2017 found he repeatedly conducted unwarranted genital exams on young girls. “Only doctors get to do this,” he told one, a 7-year-old he was supposed to be examining for a learning disability. Doctors benefit from a system where victims are often not believed [and] criminal charges for physician sex abuse are rare. At a time when powerful men in business and politics are losing careers over sexual misconduct, America’s doctors remain a baffling exception, impervious to the power of the #MeToo movement. The AJC’s new investigation found that medical boards still routinely handle serious sexual misconduct as an illness or lapse in training that should be dealt with through therapy, education and watchful eyes in exam rooms. In 31 states, cases can be hidden from the public through private board actions.
As a women's health advocate and practicing OB-GYN for 25 years, I want to point out that some doctors, especially male gynecologists, pediatricians and anesthesiologists and psychiatrists, have raped, fondled and molested patients of all ages. Finally, the conversation is getting started because of Dr. Lawrence G. Nassar. He's the former team doctor for U.S.A. Gymnastics, and he was sentenced to 60 years in prison on child pornography (37,000 images!) charges. I've heard story upon story about sexual misconduct from my patients, including inappropriate touching and sexual misconduct during their gynecologic exams when they were young women. Experiences like these have a long-term negative effect on a woman and the way she takes care of her physical health during her lifetime. Trying to get any hard facts or statistics about doctor sexual misconduct is very difficult. According to the Atlanta-Journal Constitution, "half of the more than 2,400 doctors sanctioned since 1999 for sexual misconduct involving patients still have active medical licenses." A nationwide investigation by the AJC published in July 2016 found widespread sexual abuse by doctors – from OB-GYNs committing rape and anesthesiologists taking advantage of sedated patients to pediatricians molesting children. We cannot tolerate business as usual. I would like to see a law passed where violating a patient would result in revoking his or her medical license, jail time and being forever identified as a sex offender on state registries.
A recently-published Harvard University meta-analysis funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) has concluded that children who live in areas with highly fluoridated water have “significantly lower” IQ scores than those who live in low fluoride areas. The [32-page report] said: "A recent report from the U.S. National Research Council (NRC 2006) concluded that adverse effects of high fluoride concentrations in drinking water may be of concern. Fluoride may cause neurotoxicity in laboratory animals, including effects on learning and memory." Findings from our meta-analyses of 27 studies published over 22 years suggest an inverse association between high fluoride exposure and children’s intelligence. Fluoride may be a developmental neurotoxicant that affects brain development at exposures much below those that can cause toxicity in adults." Despite the evidence against it, fluoride is still added to 70 percent of U.S. public drinking water supplies. What is perhaps most surprising is that the harmful effects of fluoride have been known by conventional medical organizations for over half a century. For example, the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) stated in their Sept. 18, 1943 issue that fluorides are general protoplasmic poisons. And, an editorial published in the Journal of the American Dental Association on Oct. 1, 1944, stated: "Drinking water containing as little as 1.2 ppm fluoride will cause developmental disturbances. The potentialities for harm outweigh those for good."
Note: You can find the original analysis on the Harvard website at this link. Another study with similar results is available here. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing health news articles from reliable major media sources.
The indictment was damning enough: A former police chief of Biscayne Park and two officers charged with falsely pinning four burglaries on a teenager. But the accusations revealed in federal court last month left out far uglier details of past policing practices in tranquil Biscayne Park, a [suburb] of Miami. Records obtained by the Miami Herald suggest that during the tenure of former chief Raimundo Atesiano, the command staff pressured some officers into targeting random black people to clear cases. “If they have burglaries that are open cases that are not solved yet, if you see anybody black walking through our streets and they have somewhat of a record, arrest them so we can pin them for all the burglaries,” one cop, Anthony De La Torre, said in an internal probe ordered in 2014. “They were basically doing this to have a 100% clearance rate for the city.” In a report from that probe, four officers — a third of the small force — told an outside investigator they were under marching orders to file the bogus charges to improve the department’s crime stats. Only De La Torre specifically mentioned targeting blacks, but former Biscayne Park village manager Heidi Shafran, who ordered the investigation after receiving a string of letters from disgruntled officers, said the message seemed clear for cops on the street. The federal case doesn’t raise allegations of racial profiling, but records show the false charges were filed against a black Haitian-American teen identified only as T.D. in the indictment.
Ecuador's highest court has upheld a $9.5 billion judgment against oil giant Chevron for decades of rainforest damage. Plaintiffs celebrated the constitutional court's decision announced Tuesday night, saying it should pave the way for indigenous tribes to receive compensation for oil spills that contaminated groundwater and soil in their Amazon home. But the ruling is largely symbolic as Chevron no longer operates in the South American country. That means Ecuador's government will have to pursue assets owned by the ... company in foreign courts, where it so far has had little luck. Last week, an appeals court in Argentina rejected an attempt by Ecuador to collect on its award, echoing earlier rulings by courts in Canada, Gibraltar and Brazil. In 2014, a U.S. court of appeals ... also denied Ecuador's request, arguing that the original judgment was obtained through bribery, coercion and fraud. In an added twist, the American lawyer who for years represented Ecuador in the matter was barred Tuesday from practicing law in New York state. The New York state appeals court found Steven Donziger guilty of professional misconduct, saying that in his appeal of the 2014 ruling he did not challenge the judge's findings of bribery, witness tampering, and the ghostwriting of a court opinion.
Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing corporate corruption news articles from reliable major media sources.
President Trump has made eliminating federal regulations a priority. His administration ... has often targeted environmental rules it sees as overly burdensome to the fossil fuel industry. To date, the Trump administration has sought to reverse more than 70 environmental rules, according to a New York Times analysis, based on research from Harvard Law School’s Environmental Regulation Rollback Tracker, Columbia Law School’s Climate Tracker and other sources. The Environmental Protection Agency has been involved in more than a third of the policy reversals. Scott Pruitt, the head of the E.P.A. who spearheaded the administration’s agenda of environmental deregulation, resigned after facing a number of ethics scandals. The new acting chief of the agency is a former coal lobbyist. Rules targeted for reversal so far include ... air and water pollution controls and protections for threatened animals and habitats. The Trump administration has, in many instances, pared back these regulations in favor of more expansive energy extraction policies — often as a direct response to petitions from oil, gas and coal companies. All told, the Trump administration’s environmental rollbacks could lead to at least 80,000 extra deaths per decade and cause respiratory problems for more than one million people, according to a recent analysis. That number, however, is likely to be “a major underestimate of the global public health impact,” said Francesca Dominici, a professor ... at the Harvard School of Public Health.
Note: The Department of Agriculture, Department of Health and Human Services and Environmental Protection Agency have all reportedly been "gagged" by the Trump administration. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption and climate change.
President Donald Trump has pardoned two Oregon cattle ranchers whose sentence for arson led armed militiamen to seize control of a wildlife refuge in 2016. Dwight Hammond, 76, and his son Steven Hammond, 49, were convicted in 2012 after a prescribed burn on their land spread to nearby public lands. The pair served time in jail, but a judge later ruled that they must serve their full five-year sentence. The ruling sparked anti-government protests that left one rancher dead. The case had drawn the attention of limited-government proponents, including the family of Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy who was himself facing charges relating to an armed standoff with law enforcement. His son, Ammon Bundy, then began a social media campaign backing the Hammonds, and travelled to Burns, Oregon, to organise protests calling for their release. On 2 January, 2016 [Mr Bundy and his group] took over the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge and widened the range of demands. The standoff ended when police arrested several members and fatally shot the group's spokesman, LaVoy Finicum. The Obama administration insisted the Hammonds receive a mandatory minimum sentence of five years - but Mr Trump has other ideas. Tuesday's announcement marks seven pardons by Mr Trump, as well as two commuted sentences. Last month, Mr Trump granted clemency to 63-year-old Alice Johnson after meeting with celebrity Kim Kardashian, who lobbied the president for her release.
Note: The above article fails to mention that a mistrial was declared in the case against Cliven Bundy after prosecutors were caught withholding massive amounts of evidence undermining federal charges. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing government corruption news articles from reliable major media sources.
Important Note: Explore our full index to revealing excerpts of key major media news stories on several dozen engaging topics. And don't miss amazing excerpts from 20 of the most revealing news articles ever published.