Category Archives: VARIOUS IN THE NEWS

Chest Binding and Health

“Study highlights health problems related to chest binding”

“The practice of chest binding to create a more masculine appearance is well know within the queer community, but medical professionals and the general pubic are less informed – which leads to a lack of information about what is the best practice. Many people are forced to search online for information and guidance and YouTube videos have become on of the most common places for people seeking knowledge. Now a research team have published the findings of a large survey they conducted. Published in Culture, Health and Sexuality: an International Journal for Research, Intervention and Care, the study is based on anonymous interviews with 1800 people who had experiences in binding their chests.”

//

“Overwhelmingly people said chest binding had a positive effect on their mental health with decreases in suicidality, anxiety and dysphoria and increased self-esteem, confidence and ability to go out safely in public.

but

“97.2% of participants reported at least one negative outcome they attributed to binding. The most commonly reported outcomes were back pain (53.8%), overheating (53.5%), chest pain (48.8%), shortness of breath (46.6%), itching (44.9%), bad posture (40.3%) and shoulder pain (38.9%).”

and

“Sports bras, layering sports bras and neoprene or athletic compression wear were the binding methods least commonly associated with negative outcomes, and therefore may be the safest options for binding.”

Digital Colonialism and the hacking coyotes #rp10

“We need to have this conversation”: Renata Avila, Joana Varon, Nanjira Sambula and Alan Mills , discuss Digital Colonialism at Re:publicaTEN, weaving in poetic/historic reflections on the Coyote, hacker-trickster resisting assimilation and annihilation.  In many ways, the subject (sadly as old as the new “free” world) is very relevant to care – access to care, what care, productions of knowledge in care..-  in so far as bodies-minds, are (being made into) territories.

The history of colonization is a history of nature being seized, of exploitation and enslavement of her people, a history of social and medical experimentation on the conquered (typically considered “less human/evolved” than the conqueror : people of color, non christian, women, criminals..), a history of burning witches and shamans, of annihilation and replacement of systems of knowledge and practices… And, of absence of laws, as well as of laws drafted along to make it all look good and straight. Let’s picture this, as it goes on, in times of high connectivity,  hi tech heartless trade, authoritarian regimes equipped with mass surveillance, where markets and governments are so hungry for everyone’s data, and so eager to sell (in Renata Avila’s words) the “utopia that an app can solve serious inequalities” and the very “basic things that need fixing”.  Like for example, connected medical devices will make up for the destruction of community and lack of concern for villages (where there is no doctor) and poor remote people, or competing proprietary devices will empower the sick and disabled when they in fact increase embedded dependencies and vulnerabilities, or like massive medical data collection/analysis will improve the administration of medicine so there will be money saved for social security (and it’s insurance companies making millions and governments spending savings on national security). AS IF.  In a time “when companies mostly from the US have more users than some countries”, as Joana Varon notes, and “the colonized are not only the developing countries anymore”. What we have is an extension of the domain of colonization, ever more apt to penetrate and submit the bodies and minds, everywhere, anytime, all the time.

At one point, Renata Avila notes that paradoxically, some of the best coyotes she knows are disconnected. Can’t help but think very fondly and also, with worry, of the great hackers-coyotes healers out there in the wild. The witches, the shamans, the DIY-DIT doulas, the unlicensed acupuncturists, the herbalist whose shop they close because, you know, not in line with regulations…  How to protect and keep this diverse knowledge and patient care alive still through the years in spite of all the active aggression, passive/aggressive standardization, rampant consent ? What of them if/when they are captured ? In what web ?

hackingcoyotes

Twitter account for the talk : @hackingcoyotes + Digital Colonialism pad https://pad.riseup.net/p/colonialcyber

And now, for our spirits, a much loved coyote poem, by Peter Blue Cloud

Coyote, Coyote, Please Tell Me

–  What is a shaman?

A shaman I don’t know

anything about.

I’m a doctor, myself.

When I use medicine,

it’s between me,

my patient,

and the Creation.

*

Coyote, Coyote, please tell me – what is power?

It is said that power

is the ability to start

your chainsaw

with one pull.

*

Coyote, Coyote, please tell me – what is magic?

Magic is the first taste

of ripe strawberries, and

magic is a child dancing

in a summer’s rain.

*

Coyote, Coyote, please tell me – why is Creation?

Creation is because I

went to sleep last night

with a full stomach,

and when I woke up

this morning,

everything was here.

*

Coyote, Coyote, please tell me who you belong to?

According to the latest

survey, there are certain

persons who, in poetic

or scholarly guise,

have claimed me like

a conqueror’s prize.

Let me just say

once and for all,

just to be done:

Coyote, he belongs to none.

https://zocalopoets.com/2012/05/15/peter-blue-cloud-tales-and-poems-of-coyote/

 

A breath of fresh Justice for Assange !

To-The-Indicter-article-5-Feb-2016-Assange-UNWAD-AFP

“The UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention has found that Julian Assange is being arbitrarily and unlawfully detained by Sweden and the United Kingdom; and that he must be immediately released and compensated. More”

>> Justice for Assange

>> Freeing Julian Assange: The last chapter, by John Pilger (+ em Portugues : O preso politico que expoe o Imperio)

>> Julian Assange: What happens to your body when you are indoors for three years ? Kashmira Gander

The Wikileaks Files

wikileaksfiles

The Wikileaks Files, The World according to US Empire (Verso books) is out !! Julian Assange’s Introduction HERE. 

“The WikiLeaks Files presents expert analysis on the most important cables and outlines their historical importance. In a series of chapters dedicated to the various regions of the world, the book explores the machinations of the United States as it imposes its agenda on other nations: a new form of imperialism founded on varied tactics from torture to military action, to trade deals and “soft power,” in the perpetual pursuit of expanding influence. It illustrates the close relationship between government and big business in promoting US trade.”

Marriage : Thanks but no thanks ?

Michael Cobb shares an opinion on marriage in The Supreme Court’s Lonely Hearts Club (NYT, June 30)

“Marriage equality activists could have pursued a different agenda — challenging the need for sexual scrutiny by the state, and the constellation of benefits that belong to marriage — but they didn’t. Instead of dreaming up new forms of governance, they asked to be ruled by the ones that already exist.

And so old questions remain: Why can’t I put a good friend on my health care plan? Why can’t my neighbour and I file our taxes together so we could save some money, as my parents do? If I failed to make a will, why is it unlikely a dear friend would inherit my estate?

The answers to all these questions are the same: It’s because I’m not having sex with those people. (To make matters worse, that also means we probably didn’t have children together.) For the only thing that truly distinguishes romance and marriage from other loving intimacies like friendships, other familial relationships and close business partnerships is that sex is (or once was) part of the picture.

So yes, marriage equality erases an odious and invidious distinction among straight and us not-straight citizens for which I’m truly glad and which I celebrate. And it’ll make lots of people’s lives better. But it also leaves unexamined the reason sex seems to give you benefits and recognition — and why it orders the world and civilization.”

Wikileaks release: TPP Transparency Chapter Healthcare Annex + Expert analysis

Capture d’écran 2015-06-10 à 21.24.30

 

“Today, Wednesday 10 June 2015, WikiLeaks publishes the Healthcare Annex to the secret draft “Transparency” Chapter of the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP), along with each country’s negotiating position. The Healthcare Annex seeks to regulate state schemes for medicines and medical devices. It forces healthcare authorities to give big pharmaceutical companies more information about national decisions on public access to medicine, and grants corporations greater powers to challenge decisions they perceive as harmful to their interests.

Expert policy analysis, published by WikiLeaks today, shows that the Annex appears to be designed to cripple New Zealand’s strong public healthcare programme and to inhibit the adoption of similar programmes in developing countries. The Annex will also tie the hands of the US Congress in its ability to pursue reforms of the Medicare programme.

>> WIKILEAKS FULL PRESS RELEASE with expert analysis

See also

>> Public Citizen Statement and Public Citizen Analysis

 

Encryption and anonymity technologies essential to protection of human rights

TOR

>> UN Special Rapporteur : Anonymity is gateway to free expression 

“We at the Tor Project have long said that Tor is a technology for free expression. Today, that view was endorsed by UN Special Rapporteur David Kaye in a new report on encryption and anonymity. The report, a close look at international law and its relation to technology, concludes that encryption and anonymity technologies are essential to the protection of human rights to privacy and freedom of expression and opinion”

All the President’s Psychologists

AMABush

All the president’s psychologists

Description:

A new report by a group of dissident health professionals and human rights activists argues that the American Psychological Association secretly collaborated with the administration of President George W. Bush to bolster a legal and ethical justification for the torture of prisoners swept up in the post-Sept. 11 war on terror.

>> Full document HERE

Read

>> American Psychological Association bolstered CIA torture programme, report says – James Risen, NY Times, April 30 2015

>> First, Do harm, Justine Sharrock, Motherjones, July 14 2009

Business on the back of our pains: Personal health data harvested online with no respect for privacy

“For now, however, millions of people are exposing their personal health profiles to internet advertisers and data brokers, right at the moment they’re making the most confidential inquiries imaginable.”

“Health data is some of the most private data you have. That a data reveals a lot about you. There’s a reason that we have laws like HIPAA—unfortunately those don’t apply here,” Quintin said. HIPAA is the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996, and it forces the government and doctors to keep patient medical records secure and confidential. It has no jurisdiction over search engine companies or data brokers who sap data “volunteered” by users.”

Read : Looking up symptoms online ? These companies are tracking you

Malades et expulsés

FAIRE_PART_05

PERSONNES ETRANGERES MALADES PLACEES EN RETENTION ET/OU EXPULSEES de février 2013 à mars 2015.

“Les associations de l’Observatoire du Droit à la Santé des Étrangers ont le regret de vous faire part de l’expulsion imminente vers le Kosovo, par la préfecture du Doubs, de Monsieur B.

Il est enfermé au centre de rétention du Mesnil-Amelot depuis 10 jours avec sa femme. Au Kosovo, il ne pourra pas bénéficier de la prise en charge médicale que nécessite son état de santé. Ses jours seront en danger. Le ministère de la santé est alerté : il doit stopper cette expulsion.

Monsieur B n’est pas un cas isolé, depuis juin 2012 nos associations ont été informées de nombreuses situations similaires dont certaines ont conduit à l’expulsion. La mobilisation associative et citoyenne aura permis d’éviter que certaines de ces personnes ne soient renvoyées vers une mort certaine.”

La Cimade / Actualités

 

COURAGE for Matt DeHart

“Matt DeHart is a 30-year-old former US Air National Guard drone team member and alleged WikiLeaks courier, who worked with the hacktivist group Anonymous. After becoming the subject of a national security investigation — and allegations relating to a teenage pornography case which he vehemently denies — he fled from the United States to Canada with his family to seek political asylum and protection under the United Nations Convention Against Torture. In what represents a moral victory for the DeHart family, the Canadian Immigration and Refugee Board judge found that the teenage pornography case against Matt lacked credibility. However, because the IRB considered that the United States still had a functioning democracy, they denied his claim, and on 1 March, 2015 Matt DeHart was handed over into US federal custody.”

>> Information and support for Matt DeHart with COURAGE foundation, who named him their third beneficiary yesterday

Health-related searches privacy sell-outs

“A new study found that 91% of health-related web pages reveal potentially sensitive information to third parties like data brokers and online advertisers.(…)

To conduct the study, University of Pennsylvania PhD student Timothy Libert analyzed the top 50 search results for 1,986 common diseases, some 80,000 web pages. He found that on 91% of the pages, third parties like social networks, advertisers, and data brokers could access information about who was viewing the page, like the user’s IP address. On 70% of the pages, those third parties could see information about specific “conditions, treatments and diseases” viewed.

Altogether, 78% of the health-related web pages sent information about you to Google, 31% sent information to Facebook, and 5% sent information to Experian, a credit bureau and data broker”

>> Your embarrassing online searches about health problems aren’t private 

Sobre o papel histórico de Wikileaks

Julian Assange em entrevista com ZH 

“Nossas publicações de 2010 se tornaram a base para numerosas ações judiciais por vítimas de crimes e abusos de guerra pelos Estados Unidos, do Tribunal Europeu de Direitos Humanos aos tribunais britânicos, ao Tribunal Internacional Criminal para a ex-Iugoslávia e ao Tribunal Penal Internacional. Só isso é “mudança” – mudança muito real para pessoas reais, que eram incapazes de levar seus casos à justiça e fazer sua defesa, e agora o são. E há o grande número de grupos de direitos humanos e organizações da sociedade civil para os quais nossas publicações fizeram uma grande diferença. Grupos como Iraq Body Count (Contagem de Corpos no Iraque), que pôde usar nossos War Logs para calcular o verdadeiro número de mortos na Guerra do Iraque, ou Public Interest Lawyers, que foi capaz de usar os documentos como fonte para seus clientes em casos de prisão e tortura. Redes de ativistas de direitos autorais como La Quadrature du Net, que usou nossos despachos para investigar a utilização de lobbies corporativos secretos para introduzir restrições ao comércio e impor leis favoráveis aos Estados Unidos. Jornalistas investigativos como o Bureau de Jornalismo Investigativo, que usou nossos materiais para reconstruir a narrativa de sérios abusos contra os direitos humanos.”

Qual foi o impacto histórico do WikiLeaks até agora? 
Nossas publicações também mudaram a forma como o jornalismo é feito. Antes do WikiLeaks, não havia precedente real para trabalho em larga escala com bases de dados. Desde que começamos a fazer isso, outros nos copiaram. Não havia precedente de amplas colaborações jornalísticas de interesse público entre jornais comerciais concorrentes. Demos início a isso, e outros estão fazendo o mesmo agora. Antes do WikiLeaks, ninguém dava importância a informações de segurança para jornalistas, ninguém pensava em usar criptografia para facilitar grandes vazamentos de fontes públicas. Agora essa é a única opção disponível. Mostramos o caminho para se fazer isso, e agora, como consequência também das revelações de Edward Snowden, que se apoiam nos avanços que possibilitamos, jornalistas estão levando isso a sério. Isso é um mar de mudança na cultura do jornalismo. Colocando um grande corpo de correspondência diplomática em domínio público, o Despachogate e suas sequelas elevaram o nível de alfabetização política para nossa geração. Nos últimos quatro anos, jornais de todo o mundo têm usado diariamente nossos materiais para apoiar suas apurações e noticiar suas consequências, em vez de correr para os analistas oficialistas. Essa é uma grande mudança em como nossa civilização entende suas circunstâncias históricas, e pode-se esperar que produza mudanças em cascata no futuro. Há também a imensurável, mas previsível consequência de nossas publicações, que é o fato de, depois das publicações, funcionários do governo americano saberem agora que cada palavra que escrevem pode um dia se tornar pública. Esse é um forte desestímulo contra os tipos de abusos sobre os quais podemos ler em seus despachos. Eles agora sabem que o segredo não vai proteger quem age de forma indevida. Essa é uma grande mudança, porque funciona como uma checagem da conduta dos burocratas do poder americano. E essas são apenas algumas das grandes mudanças. Mas há também aquelas mais particulares. Muitas pessoas argumentaram que nosso trabalho produziu mudanças muito concretas no mundo. Por exemplo, a Anistia Internacional e a BBC disseram que nosso trabalho contribuiu para o início da Primavera Árabe, porque nossas publicações foram uma causa das manifestações no final de dezembro de 2010 na Tunísia, quando a revolução começou. Os detalhes completos disso são dados no meu livro, mas muitos na revolução tunisiana, e mesmo um ex-ministro no governo de Ben Ali, disseram que nossas publicações “quebraram a espinha do sistema de Ben Ali”. Esses acontecimentos contribuíram para grandes mudanças históricas, nas quais outras forças intervieram, e desde então houve mudanças em cascata em todo o mundo. Nem toda mudança foi boa, mas uma parte foi boa. Isso é mudança?”

Chelsea Manning allowed hormones in MTF transition

“Chelsea Manning, the US soldier convicted of leaking classified information to Wikileaks, is to receive hormone therapy to help complete the transition to life as a woman.

USA Today said that in what represented an unprecedented move by the US armed forces, the Pentagon had approved Manning for treatment after a review.

“After carefully considering the recommendation that (hormone treatment) is medically appropriate and necessary, and weighing all associated safety and security risks presented, I approve adding [hormone treatment] to Inmate Manning’s treatment plan,” Col Erica Nelson, the commandant of Fort Leavenworth in Kansas, wrote in a memo on 5 February.”

Continue reading The Independent article

UK National Health Service whistleblowers ignored and bullied

“NHS staff who blow the whistle on substandard and dangerous practices are being ignored, bullied or even intimidated in a “climate of fear”, according to an independent review.

A significant proportion of health workers are afraid to blow the whistle about poor patient care and safety failures in the NHS, the government commissioned inquiry, which documented “shocking” accounts of the treatment of whistbleblowers found.”

Continue reading Guardian article

Kiss for immunity

“As many as 80 million bacteria are transferred during a 10 second kiss, according to research published in the open access journal Microbiome. The study also found that partners who kiss each other at least nine times a day share similar communities of oral bacteria.

The ecosystem of more than 100 trillion microorganisms that live in our bodies – the microbiome – is essential for the digestion of food, synthesizing nutrients, and preventing disease. It is shaped by genetics, diet, and age, but also the individuals with whom we interact. With the mouth playing host to more than 700 varieties of bacteria, the oral microbiota also appear to be influenced by those closest to us.”

>> read 80 million bacteria sealed with a kiss

Julian Assange 1527 days detention without charges

Screenshot from 2015-02-11 22:05:21

At a recent press conference in Geneva, lawyer Melinda Taylor – sitting together with Baltasar Garzon, head of Assange’s defense team, journalists Sarah Harrison and Kristinn Hrafnsson of Wikileaks – explained how Julian Assange is, in view of the law, effectively detained inside the Ecuadorian Embassy in London, and not a free man willingly imposing himself a detention to avoid questioning on alleged sex offences in Sweden. The threats, very real, are with the US… Sweden and the UK play significant roles in immobilizing Assange… What choice has a man surrounded by a moat with crocodiles, but to stay longer in the castle where he was granted asylum until this right is no longer obstructed and he can fully enjoy it ?

Screenshot from 2015-02-08 12:15:29

Julian Assange was granted asylum by Ecuador two and a half years ago, not to escape Swedish justice but as protection against political persecution and threats to his life emanating from the US. The US are building an “espionage case” against him and the organization, and public figures there have openly called for Assange’s assassination. Unjust, cruel treatments would be most likely, as we can imagine from Manning’s case and from US practices.

The investigation into him and Wikileaks was confirmed again recently with the revelations that Google has had to hand over to the FBI personal emails and metadata of 3 staffers (see Wikileaks editorial).

Julian Assange, Wikileaks staff and Wikileaks supporters, “the Wikileaks human network”, have indeed long been the targets of an arsenal of strategies essentially devised by the US and its allies to prevent them, and the likes of them now and to come, from publishing troves of truths shedding light on obscure wrongdoings worldwide. Snowden documents have proved this for a fact.

In the same time of the probe into Wikileaks, the alleged sex offences case brought against Assange in Sweden has had him deprived of liberties for over four years, despite still being at a preliminary investigation stage, with Assange not charged with any crime, certainly not rape which he is not even accused of (except by calumniators), nothing, and not trying to escape Swedish justice, contrary to what bad medias have been spinning.

Obviously, Assange’s past 967 dark days stuck inside the Ecuadorian Embassy, and still counting, are the second wave consequence of the multi parties legal struggle  evolved into a deadlock, where Sweden plays the lead stalling role and the UK the watchdogs, and where Assange’s right to asylum granted by Ecuador is obstructed.

Indeed, Sweden is still not giving guarantees that Assange would not be extradited to the US should he travel to Sweden for the investigation, and the prosecution is still unwilling to opt for alternative modes of questioning, like coming to the Embassy themselves. Severely criticized by human rights organizations and the UN, Sweden has recently, by word of a representative, stated that it sees no issues in indefinite detention without charges, confirming that it has, in the words of Assange, “imported Guantanamo’s most shameful legal practice “(see Wikileaks editorial).

Meanwhile the UK, who in the past, has threatened Ecuador to raid their embassy to grab Assange, still refuses him safe-passage to his host country. The Met Police has spent over 10 million tax payers pounds, admittedly sucking their resources, to have their “crocodiles” in place at all times guarding the building in London, ready to arrest and extradite Assange should he set foot outside. The siege has been described by John Pilger as a farce, no less.

An affront to human rights, their seekers and their defenders, and a disgrace to British legendary sense of humour – to say the least – the BBC produced and now airs, a TV “comedy” show called Asylum, in which “a whistleblower and an internet pirate find themselves trapped together under the threat of extradition in the London embassy of a fictional Latin American country.” Seriously ? It should be noted that a writer of this show has called for Assange assassination by the Met Police on Twitter. PUKE, to say the least.

As Assange spends more time deprived from liberties and sunshine, cut from his family, we worry about his health.

Right now despite the tremendous pressures, Assange is well alive and so is Wikileaks, operational, as proven by their continuing publications and brave actions, notably orchestrating NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden’s rescue from Hong Kong, in which journalist Sarah Harrison certainly didn’t lack Courage.

We should not be discouraged either and show support by our means as Wikileaks, Assange and his team stand among those at the avant-posts of the freedom of the press, which they firmly and innovatively defend. Their fate, the outcome of their struggles, is determinant for the fate of investigative journalism, freedom of expression, freedom of thought, knowledge of the world we live in, the fate of people.

heart1_hourglass1-01

 

 

 

Compassion in Care – Call for Edna’s law and public inquiry into whistleblowing

“Edna was a defenceless elderly lady who died after terrible abuse and neglect in a BUPA care home even though the “BUPA Seven” had notified management.  This campaign is dedicated to Edna’s memory and to all those who have suffered or died because a whistle-blower was ignored or too afraid to speak out.”

Compassion in Care is a charity funded by caregiver-whistleblower Eileen Chubb

Go to Info and Petition page

 

Barrett Brown sentenced to 63 months in prison

“Good news! The U.S. government decided today that because I did such a good job investigating the cyber-industrial complex, they’re now going to send me to investigate the prison-industrial complex. For the next 35 months, I’ll be provided with free food, clothes, and housing as I seek to expose wrongdoing by Bureau of Prisons officials and staff and otherwise report on news and culture in the world’s greatest prison system. I want to thank the Department of Justice for having put so much time and energy into advocating on my behalf; rather than holding a grudge against me for the two years of work I put into in bringing attention to a DOJ-linked campaign to harass and discredit journalists like Glenn Greenwald, the agency instead labored tirelessly to ensure that I received this very prestigious assignment. Wish me luck!”

Barrett Brown, after receiving his sentence

and here was his allocution / sentencing statement :

“Good afternoon, Your Honor.

The allocution I give today is going to be a bit different from the sort that usually concludes a sentencing hearing, because this is an unusual case touching upon unusual issues. It is also a very public case, not only in the sense that it has been followed closely by the public, but also in the sense that it has implications for the public, and even in the sense that the public has played a major role, because, of course, the great majority of the funds for my legal defense was donated by the public. And so now I have three duties that I must carry out. I must express my regret, but I must also express my gratitude. And I also have to take this opportunity to ensure that the public understands what has been at stake in this case, and why it has proceeded in the way that it has. Because, of course, the public didn’t simply pay for my defense through its donations, they also paid for my prosecution through its tax dollars. And the public has a right to know what it is paying for. And Your Honor has a need to know what he is ruling on.

Continue reading HERE

And, latest Barrett Brown’s review of Arts and Letters and Jail: If anyone needs me, I’ll be in Prison

AI diagnosis…

“Like many parents of a bright mind, IBM would like Watson to pursue a medical career, so it should come as no surprise that one of the apps under development is a medical-diagnosis tool. Most of the previous attempts to make a diagnostic AI have been pathetic failures, but Watson really works. When, in plain English, I give it the symptoms of a disease I once contracted in India, it gives me a list of hunches, ranked from most to least probable. The most likely cause, it declares, is Giardia—the correct answer. This expertise isn’t yet available to patients directly; IBM provides access to Watson’s intelligence to partners, helping them develop user-friendly interfaces for subscribing doctors and hospitals. “I believe something like Watson will soon be the world’s best diagnostician—whether machine or human,” says Alan Greene, chief medical officer of Scanadu, a startup that is building a diagnostic device inspired by the Star Trek medical tricorder and powered by a cloud AI. “At the rate AI technology is improving, a kid born today will rarely need to see a doctor to get a diagnosis by the time they are an adult.”

in The Three Breakthroughs that have finally unleashed AI on the world,Kevin Kelly, WIRED

Cheap parallel computation,

Big Data,

Better algorythms

Google…

 

Ebola Hackathons..

“EBOLA has a new enemy: an army of hackers. Alongside health workers and fast-tracked vaccines, software developers are now part of the campaign, putting together novel tools which could save lives.

Earlier this month, teams of physicians and graduate students from various disciplines spent a weekend huddled round laptops and drawing boards in the Saïd Business School at the University of Oxford. The aim of the Ebola Crisis Hackathon was to develop software and systems to help West African communities devastated by the worst-ever outbreak of the disease.”

Continue reading > Hackathon develops tech tools to fight Ebola Epidemic, Chris Baraniuk in the New Scientist, 19 November 2014

also

> 6 ways technology is helping to fight Ebola, on TechChange, which ends with these wise words :

“Don’t start an SMS campaign or launch a drone just because you can. It’s not about what you want to do. It’s not about technology. It’s about what’s best for the people we are there to help.”

 

EU trade secrets directive threat to health, environment, free speech, worker mobility

Multi-sectoral NGO coalition statement against a new EU directive on Trade Secrets, December 14.

On the subject of Health:

> Companies in the health, environment and food safety fields could refuse compliance with transparency policies even when the public interest is at stake.

Health :

Pharmaceutical companies argue that all aspects of clinical development should be considered a trade secret. Access to biomedical research data by regulatory authorities, researchers, doctors and patients – particularly data on drug efficacy and adverse drug reactions – is critical, however, for protecting patient safety and conducting further research and independent analyses. This information also prevents scarce public resources from being spent on therapies that are no better than existing treatments, do not work, or do more harm than good. Moreover, disclosure of pharmaceutical research is needed to avoid unethical repetition of clinical trials on people. The proposed directive should not obstruct recent EU developments to increase sharing and transparency of this data

Mains propres sur la santé, Michèle Rivasi @ Mediapart


Michèle Rivasi : opération mains propres sur la… by Mediapart

“Michèle Rivasi travaille sur la santé publique depuis trente ans. C’est l’une des premières, en 1986, à avoir alerté sur les retombées de la catastrophe de Tchernobyl, au moment où les autorités assuraient, contre toute évidence, qu’aucun nuage radioactif ne menaçait la France. Elle créera dans la foulée la Criirad, la commission de recherche et d’information indépendante sur la radioactivité.

Députée de la Drôme en 1997, députée européenne depuis 2009, elle veut aujourd’hui lancer une opération « mani pulite » à la française, sur le modèle de ce qui s’est fait en Italie dans les années 1990. Elle soutient que dix milliards d’euros d’économies pourraient être réalisées chaque année, dans le domaine de la santé, sans réduire la qualité des soins.

Elle constate « des différences incroyables » entre le prix de certains médicaments en France et notamment en Italie. Elle cite un anti-leucémique des laboratoires Novartis vendu 500 euros en Italie et 2 300 euros en France. Elle note que le prix des génériques français « dépasse de 30 % la moyenne européenne ». Elle accuse les laboratoires de créer en permanence de faux nouveaux médicaments pour éviter que leurs molécules ne soient vendues sous forme de générique.

Elle souligne enfin « l’opacité » du CEPS, le comité économique de protection de la santé, qui délivre les autorisations de mise sur le marché et fixe le prix des médicaments.

Pour elle, toute la chaîne du médicament serait gangrenée par les conflits d’intérêts. Elle cite Nora Berra, Claude Evin, Edmond Hervé, Henri Nallet, Michèle Barzach, Bernard Kouchner, Philippe Douste-Blazy, Élisabeth Hubert, Roselyne Bachelot, tous anciens ministres ou secrétaires d’État à la santé, qui ont collaboré, de près ou de loin, avec les laboratoires…

Michèle Rivasi évoque aussi Michel Barnier, Jacques Godfrain, Claudie Haigneré, et parle de parlementaires « corrompus ou gratifiés », de clubs parlementaires, de hauts fonctionnaires, d’« associations sous influence »

Sa proposition : imposer la transparence, et en finir avec les allers et retours entre décideurs politiques ou professionnels de la médecine, et laboratoires pharmaceutiques « dont l’investissement en communication et en lobbying est plus élevé que dans la recherche ».

Dans la dernière partie de l’entretien, la députée européenne parle de la Grèce et de l’Espagne, en considérant que la victoire de Syriza ou de Podemos « peut changer l’orientation de l’Europe », une Europe à laquelle elle croit mais dont elle dénonce le fonctionnement : « Trois millions de Grecs n’ont plus accès la Sécurité sociale, 25 % de gens au chômage, dont 60 % des jeunes… C’est ça leur système ? »

 

Charlie Hebdo : Non à l’instrumentalisation sécuritaire

LA QUADRATURE DU NET Paris, le 9 janvier 2015

Sans même attendre la fin d’une quelconque enquête sur l’ignoble attentat ayant visé Charlie Hebdo le 7 janvier, le gouvernement persévère dans son obstination à accroître l’arsenal antiterroriste, en notifiant à Bruxelles du décret d’application permettant le blocage de sites « terroristes » ou pédopornographiques et en annonçant de nouvelles mesures antiterroristes. La Quadrature du Net appelle les citoyens à refuser cette surenchère absurde et à défendre coûte que coûte la liberté d’expression et d’information.

L’attentat commis contre l’équipe de Charlie Hebdo mercredi matin 7 janvier montre de façon terrible à quel point la liberté d’expression est une valeur à défendre comme un des fondements de notre démocratie. Les victimes de l’attentat, journalistes, policiers ou visiteurs, ont donné leur vie pour ce qui, plus qu’un symbole, est en démocratie la première des libertés publiques.

..

LIRE LA SUITE ICI

UK health sector’s “duty to have due regard to the need to prevent people from being drawn into terrorism”

Check UK government Prevent duty guidance: a consultation (which will run until Friday January 30th 2015). Direct implications for the healthcare sector.
Introduction: 
“The Counter-Terrorism and Security Bill, which is currently before Parliament, seeks to place a duty on specified authorities (identified in full in Schedule 3 to the Bill, and set out in the guidance) to ‘have due regard, in the exercise of its functions, to the need to prevent people from being drawn into terrorism’. Preventing people becoming terrorists or supporting terrorism also requires challenge to extremist ideas where they are used to legitimise terrorism and are shared by terrorist groups. In carrying out this duty, the specified authorities must have regard to guidance issued by the Secretary of State. A draft of that guidance is attached here, for consultation.
Purpose :
“The purpose of this consultation is to seek views on the draft guidance from: local authorities, schools, further and higher education institutions, the NHS, the police, prison and young offender institution governors, and providers of probation services. These bodies are listed in Schedule 3 and will be subject to the duty, when the provisions come into force. We would also be interested in hearing from other bodies working in these fields who feel that they should also be subject to the duty.
We have included specific consultation questions throughout the document which we invite responses on. But more generally, we would like to hear views on the practicality of the guidance, what other measures could proportionately be taken to comply with the duty, any examples of existing good practice, and any opportunities and barriers to implementation. “
The health sector (p.30-32)
119. Healthcare professionals will meet and treat people who may be vulnerable to being drawn into terrorism. Being drawn into terrorism includes not just violent extremism but also non-violent extremism, which can create an atmosphere conducive to terrorism and can popularise views which terrorists exploit. The key challenge for the healthcare sector is to ensure that, where there are signs that someone has been or is being drawn into terrorism, the healthcare worker is trained to recognise those signs correctly and is aware of and can locate available support, including the Channel programme where necessary. Preventing someone from being drawn into terrorism is substantially comparable to safeguarding in other areas, including child abuse or domestic violence.
120.There are already established arrangements in place, which we would expect to be
built on in response to the statutory duty.
Health specified authorities
121.The health specified authorities in Schedule 3 to the Bill are as follows:
•NHS Trusts
•NHS Foundation Trusts
Question for consultation
19. Are there other institutions, not listed here, which ought to be covered by the duty?
Please explain why.
122. NHS England has incorporated Prevent into its safeguarding arrangements, so that
Prevent awareness and other relevant training is delivered to all staff who provide services to NHS patients. These arrangements have been effective and should continue.
123. The Chief Nursing Officer in NHS England has responsibility for all safeguarding, and a safeguarding lead, working to the Director of Nursing, is responsible for the overview and management of embedding the Prevent programme into safeguarding procedures across the NHS.
124. Each regional team in the NHS has a Head of Patient Experience who leads on
safeguarding in their region. They are responsible for delivery of the Prevent
strategy within their region and the health regional Prevent co-ordinators (RPCs).
125. These RPCs are expected to have regular contact with Prevent leads in NHS

organisations to offer advice and guidance.
126. In fulfilling the duty, we would expect health bodies to demonstrate effective action in the following areas.

TOR Solidarity against online harassment

“One of our colleagues has been the target of a sustained campaign of harassment for the past several months. We have decided to publish this statement to publicly declare our support for her, for every member of our organization, and for every member of our community who experiences this harassment. She is not alone and her experience has catalyzed us to action. This statement is a start.

The Tor Project works to create ways to bypass censorship and ensure anonymity on the Internet. Our software is used by journalists, human rights defenders, members of law enforcement, diplomatic officials, and many others. We do high-profile work, and over the past years, many of us have been the targets of online harassment. The current incidents come at a time when suspicion, slander, and threats are endemic to the online world. They create an environment where the malicious feel safe and the misguided feel justified in striking out online with a thousand blows. Under such attacks, many people have suffered — especially women who speak up online. Women who work on Tor are targeted, degraded, minimized and endure serious, frightening threats.

This is the status quo for a large part of the internet. We will not accept it.”

 Full statement here 

Every breath you take, they’ll be tracking you

“The Propeller sensor keeps track of your medication use for you, with a record of the time and place you have used your inhaler. The sensor is a small device that attaches to the top of your existing inhaler and stays out of your way when you need to use it.”

“Dr. Lawrence Madoff, an epidemiologist at the University of Massachusetts Medical School in Boston, says this is a new trend in public health. “The patient or the public is actually participating in their surveillance directly. You’re moving back closer to an event actually happening – when does someone get sick? When do they show symptoms? When do they first report something going on?”

Read MEDICAL INHALERS TO TRACK WHERE YOU ARE WHEN YOU PUFF

by Alison Bruzek for Popular Science

 

Saúde, da dependencia à autonomia

O caderno central do ultimo Jornal Mapa foca-se na area da saúde, com titulo Saúde, da dependencia à autonomia.

“Qualquer pessoa que tenha acesso a informação correcta, partilhada de forma clara, pode providenciar cuidados de saúde básicos na sua comunidade”

“A ideia de partilhar conhecimento ajuda a dispersar o poder e pô-lo onde deve estar, na nossas mãos !”

Maria Freixo, no artigo Haja Saúde !

 

L’assureur emboîte le pas du big data

Attention, en santé aussi l’enfer Big Brother est pavé de bonnes intentions.

En Juin dernier Axa lançait “Pulsez votre santé avec AXA” un jeu concours promettant des trackers santé à qui souscrirait bon pied bon oeil une assurance, assortis de bons cadeaux à qui rapporterait le bon nombre de pas…

Ou comment se voir perdre quelques bons degrés de libertés à l’horizon…

Capture d’écran 2014-11-12 à 15.33.34

Pour info 

“Parmi ceux qui ont le plus d’intérêts à acheter les données personnelles stockées et vendues par les géants de l’informatique grand public figurent en première ligne les assurances santé, qui disposent grâce aux technologies de médecine personnalisée d’une base d’informations sans précédent sur les comportements individuels des clients qu’ils doivent assurer, et qu’elles ont donc intérêt à influencer par une forme de chantage à l’assurance.

Ceux qui refuseront de voir leur activité surveillée pour vérifier qu’ils ne font rien de dommageable pour leur santé paieront plus cher leur assurance, voire n’y accéderont plus. Ou de façon plus pernicieuse, ceux qui accepteront de porter des objets connectés qui permettent à l’assurance de vérifier leur comportement auront le droit à des réductions tarifaires, mais devront alors s’interdire le moindre écart de conduite pour continuer à bénéficier des remboursements prévus au contrat. C’est ainsi la liberté individuelle qui risque de se dissoudre dans la mode du “quantified-self”.

Guillaume Champeau, “Ça y est, Axa conditionne un avantage santé à un objet connecté”

Oui…

“Et les libertés individuelles ? Ne pas s’en occuper au motif que l’individu est volontaire pour offrir les données de son corps à son assureur, via son smartphone ? Le respect de la vie privée est-il compatible avec une nouvelle « médecine » (personnalisée et numérisée) véhiculée par les géants du marché, Axa, Apple, Nike et leurs concurrents ? Où sont, ici, les puissances publiques, les responsables politiques ?”

Jean-Yves Nau, “Offrez votre corps à Axa, Apple, Nike etc.”

The Patent Pathology (TPP)

Capture d’écran 2014-10-18 à 18.13.18

 

Wikileaks renders public health a vital service and releases UPDATED SECRET TRANS PACIFIC PARTNERSHIP AGREEMENT (TPP) – IP CHAPTER (2nd Publication), an economic agreement secretly in the making which would have terrible implications on access to medicine if adopted. 

“Thursday 16 October 2014, WikiLeaks released a second updated version of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) Intellectual Property Rights Chapter. The TPP is the world’s largest economic trade agreement that will, if it comes into force, encompass more than 40 per cent of the world’s GDP. The IP Chapter covers topics from pharmaceuticals, patent registrations and copyright issues to digital rights. Experts say it will affect freedom of information, civil liberties and access to medicines globally. The WikiLeaks release comes ahead of a Chief Negotiators’ meeting in Canberra on 19 October 2014, which is followed by what is meant to be a decisive Ministerial meeting in Sydney on 25–27 October.

Despite the wide-ranging effects on the global population, the TPP is currently being negotiated in total secrecy by 12 countries. Few people, even within the negotiating countries’ governments, have access to the full text of the draft agreement and the public, who it will affect most, none at all. Large corporations, however, are able to see portions of the text, generating a powerful lobby to effect changes on behalf of these groups and bringing developing country members reduced force, while the public at large gets no say. Read the full press release here. ”

See also Julian Assange and Sarah Harrison’ editorial : 

US and JAPAN LEAD ATTACK ON AFFORDABLE CANCER TREATMENTS 

“Despite claims from the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) states that a final agreement would be reached by the start of this year, the publication of the draft IP Chapter led to a backlash – no agreement was realised, country alignments have altered and negotiations continue. However, US negotiators have made a counter-attack. The latest leaked version of the draft text shows the United States pushing for measures that would significantly constrain affordable access to vital generic drugs, such as cancer drugs and treatments for communicable diseases such as Ebola. Continue reading here

And also PUBLIC CITIZEN Analyses of the newly leaked IP chapter

 

 

 

Search Inside Yourself (mind GOOGLE)

SIY-book-bild

Google has mindfulness meditation courses for its employees (so do/did the military and Monsanto). The program, called Search Inside Yourself, focuses on attention training, self-discovery, self-mastery, and the creation of useful mental habits. The objectives are personal, inter and trans-personal, which include better efficiency, resiliency, innovation, vision, peace & like in the workplace and of course in business, and ultimately… World peace ?

Never-mind if meanwhile outside of Google, San Francisco residents rather suffer from the “growth”, and – while in the Silicon Valley – never-mind the mindfulness, happiness, and well being of the people mining coltan in the DRC, or the people assembling iPhones at the infamous Foxconn sweatshops (in what some call Buddha Abuses).

The head of the program, Chade Meng Tan, portrayed in this Guardian article, has these words : “Also if you treat everybody with kindness, they’ll like you even if they don’t really know why. And if they like you, they want to help you succeed. So it’s good for your soul and it’s good for your career.”

No doubt the skills can come in handy for a variety of individuals and groups with a variety of agendas and understanding of the word “kindness” (does it also sound like some PSYOP art of deception ?).

Chade Meng Tan compiled his teachings in a book, so that the outside world wouldn’t be left out. It is called Search Inside Yourself: The Unexpected Path to Achieving Success, Happiness (and World Peace)

Eric Schmidt, executive chairman of Google, says about the book :

“This book and the course it’s based on represent one of the greatest aspects of Google’s culture—that one individual with a great idea can really change the world”

Oh really ?!

In 2011, Eric Schmidt met with Julian Assange, Wikileaks’ founder and editor in chief, to discuss the “New Digital Age”, which would later become a book written by Schmidt (the transcript of their meeting is here). When the book was published, Julian Assange gave his opinion about it in the New York Times in June 2013, in an article very well titled The Banality of “Don’t be Evil”.

Soon, a new book by Julian Assange will be out : When Google met Wikileaks, about the encounter, and in which Assange will expose his understanding of “Google’s culture”and his vision of the future of the Internet. The publisher OR Books says the book will include his proposal for “a radical overhaul of the naming structure of the internet, one which would revolutionise the way information is accessed”

Capture d’écran 2014-07-28 à 17.55.24

 

In the meantime, for an overview / reminder of what else “mindful” Google is up to, check the related timeline on the TerminatorStudies news archive. Nothing to relax about.

 

Le “santé-mentalisme”, outil du néolibéralisme – Entretien avec le psychiatre Mathieu Bellahsen

santémentaleBook

Entretien vidéo avec le psychiatre Mathieu Bellahsen auteur de “La Santé Mentale – Vers un bonheur sous contrôle” (Ed. La Fabrique), sur Mediapart par Sophie Dufau.

http://www.mediapart.fr/journal/france/210614/mathieu-bellahsen-la-sante-mentale-est-devenue-un-outil-du-neoliberalisme

L’originalité de cet essai réside aussi dans la personnalité de son auteur. Psychiatre des hôpitaux (ex-président des internes en psychiatrie et cofondateur d’Utopsy), il suit au quotidien les malades d’un secteur de la banlieue parisienne. Fort de cette pratique, Mathieu Bellahsen est allé voir aux sources du concept de santé mentale pour comprendre son évolution. Le décryptage de textes essentiels – émanant de l’Organisation mondiale de la santé (OMS), de l’Europe ou du Centre d’analyse stratégique (service dépendant du premier ministre) – permet de saisir combien l’intention humaniste du milieu du XIXe siècle s’est muée, au début du XXe siècle et sous un vocabulaire positif, en norme impérative des comportements :

– « La santé mentale et le bien-être mental sont des conditions fondamentales à la qualité de la vie, à la productivité des individus, des familles, des populations et des nations, et confèrent un sens à notre existence tout en nous permettant d’être des citoyens à la fois actifs et créatifs », écrit l’OMS en 2005

– « Une personne en bonne santé mentale est quelqu’un qui se sent suffisamment en confiance pour s’adapter à une situation à laquelle elle ne peut rien changer », estime le Centre d’analyse stratégique en 2010.

– La prise en compte de la santé mentale permet « d’améliorer la disponibilité des ressources économiques », peut-on lire dans le Livre vert de l’Union européenne, publié en 2005.

 

Edward Snowden un an après: Asile politique, Reconnaissance et Rise Against The Machine

Capture d’écran 2014-07-08 à 20.08.25

SNOWDEN, TERMINATOR ET NOUS, par Jérémie Zimmerman

“Il y a un an jour pour jour, un courageux jeune homme nommé Edward Snowden a sacrifié une grande partie de sa vie et de ses libertés pour nous révéler la dure réalité du monde dans lequel nous vivons. Ses révélations en cours nous enseignent et nous permettent de comprendre à quel point notre relation à la technologie a changé à tout jamais, et pourquoi nous ne pourrons plus faire confiance aux machines. Edward Snowden nous a aussi montré le chemin à emprunter pour reprendre le contrôle des machines, et l’importance de cette tâche que plus personne ne peut ignorer.”

Lire la suite sur le blog de Mediapart ICI 

EXIGEONS L’ASILE POLITIQUE POUR EDWARD SNOWDEN ! par La Quadrature Du Net

“Le 5 juin 2013 paraissait le premier d’une série d’articles de Glenn Greenwald et Laura Poitras et une vidéo d’Edward Snowden. L’onde de choc des révélations d’Edward Snowden n’a pas fini d’ébranler l’édifice monstrueux du partenariat public-privé de surveillance planétaire de chacun d’entre nous. Ce même jour, chacun découvrait le pouvoir des actes d’un seul être humain, dévoué aux valeurs démocratiques et aux droits fondamentaux, lorsqu’ils sont relayés à destination de tous. Hélas, nous découvrions également l’indifférence, ou pire : la complicité d’États qui ne cherchent qu’à nier leur propre responsabilité, ou à légaliser rapidement leurs propres atteintes à la vie privée des citoyens”

Lire la suite ICI 

Caption by http://terminatorstudies.org

DARPA psychotherapy (or MDMA?)

Capture d’écran 2014-07-07 à 11.56.25

If mindfulness training fails at reducing anxiety, depression, and treating PTSD amongst the Marines, they will still have the possibility to consult with Ellie, “an avatar, a virtual therapist developed at USC with funding from DARPA, the Defense Department’s advanced research center.” Loopy.

Read: Would You Want Therapy From a Computerized Psychologist ? by Megan Garber in The Atlantic.

Alternative:

MDMA ? Not only PTSD might pass in just a few assisted sessions, but who knows, the whole idea of going to war or exerting violence against other life forms could very well pass FOREVER. More about PTSD & MDMA assisted psychotherapy research conducted by MAPShere.

The tech community needs compassion and inclusivity to fight surveillance, by Jillian York

Jillian York (EFF) In the Guardian today : “We are living amidst a crisis of conscience, politics and action. We must approach surveillance from all angles, taking care not to shame or dismiss people in the process”

She describes the harm reduction approach applied to the epidemic of surveillance she and jacob Appelbaum talked about last week at re:publica 14.

Read her article HERE

Journalists Sarah Harrison and Alexa O’Brien @ re:publica 14

SARAH HARRISON, who, on top of her great work with Wikileaks as an investigative journalist and legal researcher, has provided whistleblower Edward Snowden with some ultimate form of care last year, from Hong-Kong to his asylum in Russia,

and ALEXA O’BRIEN, the journalist to whom the world owes an extensive searchable archive of the only available transcripts of WikiLeaks source Bradley Manning’s closed trial,

together put a few facts straight about Wikileaks, Manning and Snowden in their conversation @ re:publica 14.

Watch it HERE.

TOR against cyberstalkers and the extension of domestic violence

TOR IS BEING USED AS A SAFE HAVEN FOR VICTIMS OF CYBER-STALKING, an article by Meghan Neal

“For several years, Tor, spearheaded by Tor Project executive director Andrew Lewman, has been tackling cyberstalking, working with domestic violence groups to set up countersurveillance programs to help victims evade online surveillance, just as dissidents, whistleblowers, or cybercriminals use the onion router to mask their identity.

“Tor Browser and Tails [an incognito operating system] help keep victims anonymous, so they can browse without being watched, at least for a moment in time,” Lewman told me in an email.

The onion router can hide a victim’s identity long enough for them to research where to find help, and look up what data they can find about themselves without tipping off their stalker that they’re online, he said.”

“If you want to connect to me, you have to do it safely” – Jacob Appelbaum & Jillian York @ re:publica 14

Like people didn’t give up on sex because of STDs, they are not going to give up using the Internet or today’s communication devices because they are bugged. There are however (transitive) risks in exposing our lives to constant capture / monitoring by third parties, and these could be minimized if the variety of us become better informed and start to adopt know-better behaviors, like in safer sex. Could we then learn how to use crypto tools like we learnt how to place condoms on bananas ? Drawing analogies with public health campaigns, environmental education for children and other social movements, Jacob Appelbaum (TOR) and Jillian York (EFF) lay out the principles of what could be a harm reduction campaign against the epidemic of mass surveillance and erosion of privacy, in their talk @ re:publica 14. Note that in a salutary queering of the debate, Appelbaum and York also point to the fact that opting out of the problem today saying “I have nothing to hide” is pretty much equivalent to (dominant white male) hetero saying AIDS is a gays thing and doesn’t concern them : false of course, and irresponsible. True, not everyone exposed to mass surveillance in their countries is exposed to the same risks (as of now white westerners might not risk to be put in jail or drone striked overnight for expressing their thoughts or gathering together on a regular basis), but understanding the interconnectedness is a vital key for all across the globe.

Watch the talk here : LET’S TALK ABOUT SEX BABY, LET’S TALK ABOUT PGP 

A woman hid her pregnancy from Big data

A woman hid her pregnancy from the Internet, using TOR, cash not cards, personal server, local lockers instead of house mailbox, and of course, not feeding uncle Facebook the happy news. Educational.

“My story is about big data, but from the bottom up,” she said. “From a very personal perspective of what it takes to avoid being collected, being tracked and being placed into databases.”

READ How one woman hid her pregnancy from big data.