Monday, February 21, 2011

Let Everyone Read Your Blog...

     Hello, this is definitely one tool that you will want to add to your blog.  Google translate will convert your entire blog into most other languages so international readers can understand your blog.  I posted this because a blogger friend ran into this very issue.  Below is everything you need from

Add Translate to your website

Add Google's website translator to your webpages, and offer instant access to automatic translation of the pages. Adding the website translator is quick and easy. Get started with our wizard below:

Step 1: Type of translation element

Step 2: Language

Step 3: Show optional settingsHide optional settings


Powered byTranslate
  Powered byTranslate

Step 4: Copy and paste this snippet of code into your webpage

Preview your page

     You can simply add this code just as you add any other widget to your blog; copy and paste it.  If you have any questions then please leave them in the comment section. Thanks!

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Is MDMA Useful?

     Methylenedioxymethmphetamine or MDMA is the active ingredient in ecstasy.  Ecstasy fueled a party culture in the 1980's and 90's in North America and Europe.  Ecstasy goes by the nickname "E" which stands for euphoria, energy, empathy, and escape.  Rumors swirled that it could cause nervous breakdowns, Parkinson's disease, memory loss, and even death. MDMA has been accused of being many things including a killer.  However, some therapists claim that it can help patients move beyond horrible feelings that torture them and help light the way out of an unspeakable past.  It's kind of like MDMA started getting a bad reputation because of ecstasy. 
     Thousands of practitioners have risked their licenses to use MDMA in underground clinics since 1985.  It was labeled as a Schedule I by the Drug Enforcement Administration or DEA, for substances with no approved medical use and a high risk for abuse.  The effects of a dose lasts for 4 hours.  It initiates a surge in serotonin and dopamine.  They are neuro-chemicals associated with feelings of happiness and pleasure.  It also gives a surge of oxytocin. This chemical gives a feeling of trust and bonding.  MDMA controls the fear center in the brain, the amygdola, and suppresses the fight-or-flight response.  The apprehension, that a trauma patient could suffer, is silenced with no sedative effects of anti-anxiety medications.  It helps a victim of abuse or an injured veteran live a life free of pain.  Also, it can be used to treat depression, eating disorders, end-of-life anxiety, chronic pain, and PTSD.
     Post Traumatic Stress Disorder or PTSD, leaves psychological scars on the human brain.  When a person experiences a traumatic event such as a tour of duty, a rape, or a car accident, the amygdola sends panic messages to the body.  past events resurface in the present in the form of flashbacks and nightmares.  With PTSD, you exhaust your energy trying to get work, paying the bills, and keeping up the facade that you are "normal."  Then, when something else goes wrong, it triggers fight-or-flight and you panic.

     Of course, it is not all good.  There are risks with MDMA.  Along with increasing blood pressure and heart rate, it causes the heart to pump inefficiently.  MDMA can have adverse effects when taken with other medications causing serotonin syndrome.  This is when the brain overdoses on serotonin, resulting in tremors, sweating, and hallucinations.  In more serious cases, it can lead to hyperthermia or an increase in body temperature, which can bring on seizures, a coma, renal failure, and possibly death.
     The some professionals believe the safer alternative to MDMA is prolonged exposure or PE therapy.  PE therapy is when patients go over the details of their trauma in 8 to fifteen weekly sessions.  There is a 95% success rate in cases where the patients complete the course.  But, 20% of the people that start PE therapy, drop out.
     MDMA is risky to an extent but most drugs are.  It's a case of risk versus reward.  If I was a military veteran that suffered from PTSD, would I want some take MDMA and get some of my sanity back?  Or if I were a rape victim, would I want to end all of those horrible nightmares?  I feel a big part of the negativity of MDMA has to do with the fact that it is associated with ecstasy.  What do you think?  Do you think that trauma patients should have to go with PE therapy, where they relive their traumatic experience over and over or be able to use MDMA where they can basically face and forget the event with a clean mind?

Friday, February 11, 2011

Free Egypt!!!.

     How important will this day wind up being in world history?  I am happy for Egyptian people everywhere; especially the ones who wanted President Mubarak out.  This is a good example for other nations as far as running a generally peaceful protest on such a wide scale.  I followed this story but I never wrote about it because it was forever changing.  Hundreds of thousands of protesters in Cairo rejoiced Friday when vice president, Omar Suleiman reported that Hosni Mubarak had decided to officially step down.  There were chants of "Egypt is free! Egypt is free!"  The protest lasted for 18 days straight.  The vice president said that the military would assume power.  Field Marshal Mohammed Hussein Tantawi, commander-in-chief of the armed forces, has taken control.  It was rumored that Mubarak would step aside but when he gave his speech Thursday, he was acting as though all of the protests hadn't taken place.  This confused many people.  I think that he just didn't want to give it up and initially thought he could just wait out the will of the people.  The protesters had demanded the departure of the prime minister, the parliament, the vice president, and the president.  They also said that thy didn't want a military-led government.  I guess four out of five isn't bad.  It will be interesting to see what comes out in the wash.  How quick will the people disperse and return to their homes?  Will they still wait it out until they have all of their demands met or will Mubaraks ousting be enough for now?  I hope that all of the hard work will pay off in the end.  The people have spoken and the whole world saw it unfold.  Will this prompt other Arab nations to action?

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Super Bowl Fiasco...

     Americans are quick to file a lawsuit for the most trivial things.  Although some are warranted, most are just get rich quick schemes.  In this case, I will let you decide for yourself if it's a scheme or legit.
     After the Super Bowl XLV on February 6th, the NFL, owner Jerry Jones, and the Dallas Cowboys are on the receiving end of a major lawsuit.  Football fans bought tickets to the game and didn't have seats.  One man said some of the Cowboys' biggest fans were promised Super Bowl tickets and winded up sitting on metal folding chairs with a crappy view.  The way it went down was right before the game, the NFL announced that 1,250 temporary seats were found unsafe so they rushed to get seats for about 850 people.  The other 400 fans had to stand and watch the game on television monitors.  Now mind you these are people that had already paid full ticket prices.  In the lawsuit, it states that the Cowboys gave no compensation for the inconvenience.  The NFL said that about 400 of the fans have two options.  Either get a ticket to next years Super Bowl game and a $2,400 cash payment or a ticket to any future Super Bowl including airfare and hotel accommodations. Do you think that is fair?  It seems to me that it is except for the fact that it was Green Bay and the Steelers in this particular Super Bowl.  If either one was your team, they might not make it back in your lifetime.
     The way plans fall apart these days, we shouldn't be surprised when things don't go our way.  However, I am the first one to get what I paid for with no exceptions.  Some people say that these fans are making too much of this incident.  So far, I don't think that it has gone too far.  But, who knows what is to come out in the next several weeks.  I feel as though the Cowboys organization should take the brunt of the blame for this fiasco. That was piss poor planning that could have been easily avoided.  By the way, the Packers beat the Steelers 31-25.  What do you think about this mess?  Who's fault do you think it is?

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Militants Kill Suspected Spies

     Here we go again.  Militants killed four men accused of spying for the U.S. Their bodies were dumped along a road in Pakistan's tribal region.  The area where they were found is thought to be a safe haven for al Qaeda and Pakistani Taliban militants.  There was a note affixed to one of the men that said, "This is the fate for whoever works for the U.S."  It also stated that they confessed to spying.  Dozens of men have been killed for aiding U.S. and Pakistani forces in Afghanistan.  Many believe that these killings are carried out because the U.S. is suspected in more than 30 missile strikes in Pakistan since August 2010.
     I took a moment to see just how I felt about all of this.  The proud American in me wants to suit up and go hunting; although, that would just add to the overwhelming ignorance in that region.  So the better man in me would just wish that those involved suffer 10 times as much humiliation and pain as the men who were executed.  Don't get me wrong, I know that actual spies are severely punished and killed. But, who determined that they were spies?  Did they have any kind of trial?  Or was it just a case of street justice?  Now, on the flip side, suspected terrorists and spies have a court trial if charged by the U.S.  Can you believe it?  I will give them spies to throw in prison but terrorists?  In Ricky's world, I would determine if the accused was involved and then, a la Samuel L. Jackson in the movie "Unthinkable", force them to tell on their buddies.  When I was done, they would have the right to a speedy death.  I know it's kinda harsh but is it though? How would you handle spies and terrorists?

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

What Is Going To happen Here?

  I knew it was just a matter of time before I got around to writing about Egypt.  I have been following this compelling story since it started.  I will make a separate post on the topic.  Do you wonder if something like this could ever happen here in the U.S.? And what would it take to spark off such a revolution?  I am a proud American by birth, by allegiance, and in spirit.  It would definitely be a sad day but could become one of the most defining moments in history.  I served in the military so I have been on both sides of the spectrum.  What I want is for Congress to put aside egos and to work with President Obama to help strengthen this country back to prominence.  Americans need to act like Americans.  Why not buy American and start supporting more stateside causes instead of the overseas causes until everything is good here at home?  We tend to use patriotism as a knee jerk reaction after the fact.  After something terrible has happened.  Use all of your energy constructively instead of becoming part of the problem.  I see the "Tea Party" as a joke.  They have a good premise but no substance.  The people that represent them have crazy agendas.  Not to mention all of the negativity that has surrounded gatherings and protests.  They have changed the atmosphere of politics but not in a positive way.  The whole vote with your guns kind of mentality has no place in this society.  Just take a good look at what happened in Arizona.  I strongly feel that, due to the volatile atmosphere in politics, this event happened.  Not everyone is strong enough mentally to handle the in-your-face style of politics without taking it a step further.
     The events that have happened in Tunisia and Egypt might end up being a precursor to what's to come over there in other countries. Hopefully, we can all come together without taking it that far in the U.S.  What do you think is to come here in the states?  What do you think about the way things are going here?
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