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Perthblog

This is the official Perth blog site for posts, comments, and other contributions about leadership, behavioral finance and economics, and about management generally, as well as other related topics that take our fancy.

Alcohol causes cancer – and the news gets even worse


A true shock! Alcohol causes cancer. No, it’s not a fake news story. It’s been validated by respected cancer researchers internationally as well as UK government committees . It causes cancer in at least 7 sites - oropharynx, larynx, esophagus, liver, colon, rectum and breast. And it’s likely that it also causes cancer of the skin, prostate and pan...
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Are smartphones an even bigger aging and health threat than obesity?


We’re so worked up about obesity (rightly so, though) that we forget about all the many other things that are out to get you. Count amongst these your trusty computer and your indispensable smartphone. The big problem is that we are either hunched over our computers at work or over our smartphones everywhere else. I’m sure you all know the problem ...
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Wagbits Revolutionizes How Pets Feel About Their BMI!


Obesity is old news these days. But what about our pets? It’s now become the topic du jour. naturally they’re getting fatter , just like we humans. The scientists are getting in the act, coz pet obesity (hereafter PO) is now big business, and of course we need to work out its genetics . Now the race is on to find healthier lifestyles for them, like...
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Quantum Biotech Completes the Cure for All Cancer!


Did you see the truly amazing news that there’s now a drug that can actually cure all cancers no matter their location ? And it’s been approved by the fusty old FDA so it really must work! Yep, it only works in about 4% of the population who have the right genetic makeup. But the writing is on the wall. Soon scientists are going to figure out all t...
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Humans can thrive on a totally polluted planet!


Did you see the news piece about pollution at the bottom of the Marianas Trench? It’s the deepest place on Earth. Turns out that the crustaceans at the very bottom are 50 times more contaminated by toxic pollution byproducts than fish in the most polluted Chinese rivers. So congratulation humans! We have succeeded magnificently in polluting absolut...
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Maybe Alzheimer’s isn’t a Brain Disease?


So I guess you saw that latest failure of an Alzheimer’s drug ( verubecestat from Merck )? Scratch yet another Phase III Alzheimer’s drug hopeful. Of 244 drugs tried out for Alzheimer’s between 2002 and 2012 , only one was approved and it is of tiny effectiveness anyway. It’s got a 99.6% failure rate in this area. As you probably know, the reigning...
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Does noise cause global dysfunction in human mood?


Music streaming is hot. Everyone’s doing it. So why is it so popular? Well, the music is popular and varied, often relaxing. You can live in your own world. What’s not to like? Outside there’s a lot of hurly-burly and especially a lot of noise. Is music streaming a way to get away from the noise? We are all bathed in a constant tumult of noise, unc...
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Exercise is being way overhyped!


So you know what I mean? Can’t open any magazine, blog, newspaper, social media without being bombarded by how great exercise is for you. Nauseating right? Full disclosure: I wear a Fitbit (Blaze) permanently, run every day, walk whenever I can. I’ve drunk fulsomely of the Kool-Aid. But that doesn’t make me right. Nor does it mean that I am totally...
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Being overweight is not your fault – and how to cure it


So yep a majority of people are either overweight or obese. And it’s a commonplace that they need to diet and exercise to fix the problem. The subtext is that for such people it’s their own fault. If they only had the willpower they wouldn’t have the problem. I beg to differ. Sure, for many if not most people a lack of exercise or poor diet is a co...
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Head transplants – body optional?


So you haven’t heard of head transplants? Get with the times, dude! Believe it or not an Italian medical research team is planning to do a head transplant in 2017 . And yep, they even have a volunteer. Takes all types. There’s considerable skepticism however that the operation can go ahead let alone succeed. Most mainstream surgeons think it’s impo...
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Do you have Pre-Alzheimer’s?


It being Presidential silly season, what better than to write a post about past presidents. So I read the latest magnum opus on said topic recently ( The American President: From Teddy Roosevelt to Bill Clinton 1st Edition by William E. Leuchtenburg ). Warning: it’s a bit of a slog, but it’s worth the trek. The chapter that really caught my attenti...
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A New and Practical Pathway to Immortality?


Well here’s an intriguing piece of research. It turns out that at least some genes in both animals and humans are still alive even after the animal itself is dead. So far it looks like they can remain active for up to 48 hours after their host has given up the ghost. ( New Scientist, “Hundreds of genes seen sparking to life two days after death ”)....
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Is widespread pill usage actually making us more disease prone?


Did you see that employers looking to hire are having a hard time finding them free of drugs , especially marijuana? Meanwhile the House of Congress looks like it’s going to pass a bill to help recovery by drug addicts , especially those who use prescription drugs. But for the moment, it looks like Congress is focused more on helping people to reco...
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Could Genetically-Modified Humans Re-Ignite Global Growth?


I’m sure you’ve heard about the Vermont law that says that all foods that include genetically-modified ingredients must be disclosed on the label starting July 2016. Of course most of Europe doesn’t allow GM foods. China officially bans GM crops, although in fact the vast majority of them are in fact GM . So the movement to ban all GM foods is pret...
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Are recessions contagious?


We're in one of the longest economic expansions in history right now. So of course the forecasters are jumping off the bandwagon to predict the next recession. The only thing though: economists are tragically unsuccessful at predicting recessions. According to the IMF, in the 1990s private economists only predicted correctly 2 of 60 recessions one ...
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Should exercise be compulsory?


Did you hear the latest about the benefits of exercise? Seems it reduces cancer tumors, in whole or in part (“ A run a day keeps the tumor at bay ”)? It was a study in mice but it looks like it will extend to us humans. As well as this the study showed yet again that exercise has a major impact in boosting the immune system. So it just doesn’t impa...
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Are women smarter than men – but only after babies?


So while Trump disses women, the women are nonetheless showing their mettle a la Hilary and Fox's Megyn Kelley. That brings me (well, kind of) to an article I read recently in New Scientist “Busting the baby brain myth: Why motherhood makes minds sharper ”. The author (a woman btw) is out to debunk what she sees as being the myth of the “baby brain...
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General Anesthesia – Chemical Concussion?


After being ignored for years, including by the medical profession, we have finally woken up to the huge brain damage that can be caused by concussion. Now there’s even a movie about it . We’ve woken up to what a sensitive plant our brains actually are. I think we have another such sleeper in our midst about whose dangers we will soon wake up too. ...
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Gluten is not the problem – herbicides are


See all those gluten-free foods at your local supermarket? Think you’re gonna lose weight when you eat them. Fuhgit about it. The skinny is that they are a useless fad. Don’t take my worthless opinion for it – instead check out the respected Consumer Reports’ article “ 6 Truths about a gluten free diet ”. The conclusions are that gluten-free diets ...
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Is Alzheimer’s Contagious?


Did you notice that Gene Amdahl (Founder of Amdahl computers, the company that ran against IBM and won for a while) just died? He was one of the pioneers in computing and a true global innovator. Tragically he died of Alzheimer’s. That puts paid to the notion that you can avoid this terrible disease by having an active mind. You couldn’t get anyone...
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