Prime AGE Defense Aims to Counter Effects of Aging


Warning: Use of undefined constant user_level - assumed 'user_level' (this will throw an Error in a future version of PHP) in /homepages/37/d209111074/htdocs/robschwenck/wp-content/plugins/ultimate-google-analytics/ultimate_ga.php on line 524

I am one that is amazed by the way the body functions. Each system seeks a balance with all the other systems within the body. When one criteria changes in one system, whether it’s the concentration of an enzyme, the presence of a virus, or a slightly increased pH level, the system changes to adapt and thereby potentially affects other systems.

As someone with a chemical engineering background and one who has trained himself to analyze systems to determine the root causes of failures, I struggle to imagine the complexity of the biological systems that doctors and researchers study to determine root causes of health problems. As an aside, had I known of the existence of the kind of doctor that Dr. House is, a diagnostician, I may have chosen that as my career path instead of engineering.

Perhaps it’s my long-standing interest in medicine that has kept me in loose contact with the research breakthroughs and scientific accomplishments in the medical field. Whatever the reason, I was impressed with some of the latest evidence being discovered in the area of anti-aging.

Apparently there is something called Advanced Glycation End-products, or AGEs, that are being traced to a variety of health problems. Basically, the thought process goes something like this:
Aging is simply the accumulated change to the building blocks of life: proteins, carbohydrates, fats, even DNA. Our environment starts to make the changes to these building blocks as soon as we’re conceived, but the signs really present themselves after we reach puberty. After puberty, the aging discussion turns to biological age versus the chronological age. The two ages begin to differ based on thing like our diets (whether we eat whole foods, fiber, excess processed foods, the hormones and chemicals present in what we eat, and even the serving size) and our lifestyles (whether we smoke, drink, exercise, sleep, have excessive sun exposure, or are subject to chronic stress). Eat poorly and live hard, your biological age will be much greater than your chronological age. We know this empirically; just look around: chronic tanners’ skin turns rough, smokers’ skin loses its collagen, etc.

The questions up to now have been why and what can we do about it?

The answers up to now have been to eat and live well, and/or supplement with things like a strong anti-oxidant, multi-vitamin, and omega 3’s.

Eating well has become more difficult with all the hormones that are pumped into our foods these days. Even organic-corn-fed open-range-bred chicken gets old after a while.

It seems the more recent research would indicate that even the recommended supplementation regimens are addressing the wrong area of the body. As I mentioned earlier, if one system suffers, they all potentially suffer. Well, up to now, supplementation attempted to pull the affected system back to health by pulling the secondary systems back to health.

The new research on AGEs has identified many health problems to be related to the aging process. Things like diabetes and heart disease may be able to be addressed by attempting to support the endocrine system. At the same time, the loss of collagen may be prevented, keeping our appearance healthy as we age.

Such are the claims for a new product from Market America: Prime AGE Defense. The list of benefits is impressive. Anyone who knows someone concerned about the way they will age over the next few decades should certainly investigate this for themselves. I, for one, am eager to “recalibrate” my biological systems.

The Not Guilty Plea


Warning: Use of undefined constant user_level - assumed 'user_level' (this will throw an Error in a future version of PHP) in /homepages/37/d209111074/htdocs/robschwenck/wp-content/plugins/ultimate-google-analytics/ultimate_ga.php on line 524

A few days in a courtroom on jury duty and now reading two articles in the paper today abnout drunk driving may have just eliminated my faith in the legal system–a faith that has bee tenuous ever since OJ Simpson was pronounced not guilty.

The case I was released from for employment obligaions was of a fellow in Trenton who disobeyed police as he continued to ride a Quad-bike/ATV through the city of Trenton, NJ. Just riding an ATV on the streets of Trenton is illegal, but this guy disobeyed officers–nearly running one down–and kills an innocent woman. While he was on bail, he gets picked up for selling crack. He’s currently serving a sentence for the drug charge, but the issue of his ride through Trenton resulted in a hung jury, so he’s getting another trial. Apparently, since he didn’t have the intent of killing the woman, the prosecutor is having trouble convicting him of it. Right.

Today I hear of a woman who is on record admitting that she smoked crack at 2am, did heroin at 9am, had one drink (just 1?) at noon, and hid the crack pipe in "a bodily cavity" after a car crash at 5pm. As a consequence of the crash, two of her four or five foster kids are dead. After admitting the use of mind altering substances, this woman has the audacity to stand before a judge and say she is not responsible for the two children’s deaths? She pleas Not Guilty to the court and is held on $500,000 bail. She also has a history of driving drunk and at the time of the crash was allegedly driving 70 mph. Sounds not guilty to me.

The second story in the paper today covers a drunk driver who was carting around 8 kids. When she crashed, also at 70 mph, an 11 year old was killed. Her 11 year old survived. Several were not even wearing seatbelts. Her lawyer is making the case that his client is not the only one responsible, that the parents of the kids she picked up saw she was drunk and chose to let the kids ride with her. Her blood-alcohol level was .132 ( the limit is .08) and she has plead Not Guilty.

I’m confident that the system will ultimately find these clowns guilty, so maybe my faith in the system isn’t completely ruined yet. Until then, how frustrating is it knowing that our tax dollars have to pay for others’ inability to own up to the consequences of their actions?

First Law of Socialism


Warning: Use of undefined constant user_level - assumed 'user_level' (this will throw an Error in a future version of PHP) in /homepages/37/d209111074/htdocs/robschwenck/wp-content/plugins/ultimate-google-analytics/ultimate_ga.php on line 524

“Socialism” is being thrown around more often these days as the nation discusses the pressing issues of our society: health care reform, social security reform, corporate bailouts, etc. Those citizen against the president’s “spreading the wealth around” cry in the shrillest voices possible, denouncing the ideas presented as socialist in nature. In response, the supporters of those measures like to point out that so many other things in our society are already socialized, and they work well, so why not socialize more? After all, public education is socialism, the Social Security program is socialism, the military is socialism–in addition to a litany of others that various people categorize as socialistic. Let’s take a look at them one by one, shall we?

Public education is built on the principle that everyone pays into it through their local property taxes whether they have children attending at the moment or not. National funding is provided to the states who distribute monies primarily to systems needing assistance for paying for extra programs in distressed districts. Everyone pays into the pot: parents, grandparents, single/childless people, and even businesses that pay property tax.

While no data was immediately available to show how many people pay property tax funding a school vs how many people are attending or has a dependent attending a local school, it is reasonable to assume that the Pareto Principle (the 80/20 rule) applies in any given school year. Overall, the number of people benefiting from the public education system is near 100%, since most people have children eventually and life would be very different if only half of our population was educated even to the 6th grade; however, the only reason public education can succeed is that at no specific point is there much greater than 20% of the population taking advantage of society’s free education system.

On the national level, as money is allocated and distributed through the states to a school districts in greater need, again the Pareto Principle comes into play as fewer than 20% of all schools receive greater than 80% of the additional funding based on need.

Social Security, for some reason, is raised as a successful attempt at socializing our retirements. Even though the program is now bankrupt and totally dependent on future tax contributions into the government’s general ledger account rather than contributions into the Social Security account, somehow it is considered a success because they haven’t missed disbursing any of the payments that have reduced buying power from when the program was initially conceived.

Speaking of how it was conceived, payments were not set to be issued until a participant reached 65 when the life expectancy was only 63. Further, the contribution calculation was based on contributions from the first segment of your income up to a given dollar value. That dollar value has not kept up with inflation, meaning people making more money today, by the original standards, would be paying into the system where today they are not.

The changes in our demographic combined with the lack of changes to the system has resulted in fewer workers year after year supporting each retiree. The original plan was that most people were not going to be able to enjoy the benefits of their retirement being funded by Social Security. The only way the system could work long term was to provide the benefits to as few people as possible. Once the politicians started voting based on what the retirees wanted, the system was made unstable and unless we return to the modern equivalent to the original criteria, this experiment in socialism is doomed to fail. Why? Too many people are benefiting from it.

The third example often offered as socialism is the military. However, the military is a volunteer force paid for in full by the taxes from the entire population for the purposes of national defense. No one individual benefits more than any other, unlike Social Security or even the public school system. The amount you collect from Social Security is determined by the amount you’ve made over the years and whether you decided to get married or not. The amount of money distributed to the school systems is a function of the socio-economic status of the town, city, or neighborhood. When it comes to the military, however, no citizen benefits more than any other because it is not a redistribution of wealth, it is the populace paying for a service provided by those who offer it. In this way, the military more closely resembles private industry when there are no limits to what the customer will pay. Even commanders are promoted and dismissed from assignments based on their performance in the field, just as we are at our jobs (in theory).

From these three examples–socialized education, socialized retirement, and national defense–one can probably draw several conclusions. The conclusion in particular that is foreshadowed by the title of this little article is this: Socialism in a field can succeed indefinitely if and only if the vast majority (80-90+%) does not presently desire its benefits. Education succeeds because so few take advantage of it each year while everyone pays for it year after year. Social Security is failing because it is offering benefits to more people than originally intended because the retirement age is greater than the life expectancy. Dispite the supporters of socialism, the military is anything but and continue indefinitely as an entity of the government offering a service to the people, so long as the people desire to continue paying for it. If socialized health care becomes the law of the land, this law of socialism will prevail and the country will not go bankrupt so long as the vast majority of people don’t want to see the doctor.

**Facebook users, please follow the link to the original post if you wish to comment.

The Wealthy Need a New Venture: The Next Frontier


Warning: Use of undefined constant user_level - assumed 'user_level' (this will throw an Error in a future version of PHP) in /homepages/37/d209111074/htdocs/robschwenck/wp-content/plugins/ultimate-google-analytics/ultimate_ga.php on line 524

Looking back on the history of the US, it’s clear that although typical pioneers led the way into new territories looking for opportunity, it wasn’t until people of independent means moved there that civilization was brought to an area.

It was people with money to invest that backed the first caravans, who bankrolled the laying of the transcontinental railroad, and in many cases were best prepared to take advantage of the best opportunities available at the time. They may not have panned for gold, but they probably backed the company that sold the pans and pickaxes.

What is there these days? There are no more geographical frontiers anywhere in plain sight. The poles? The rainforests? The deserts? The wildernesses of the world are either politically protected or are showing little interest in repeating the growth of the American West. Today we have only financial frontiers, resulting in money being placed in new untested investments: first, hedgefunds; second, real estate; third, securitized debt and other derivatives–all of which may yet prove to be lousy creations of the financial mind.

The rich need somewhere to put their money. They need new frontiers. They need boundaries to push and horizons to expand.

What it comes down to, is that there needs to be a reason for normal people to seek out the colonization of sea and space and that reason needs to be stronger than mere tourism. It needs to be attractive and attainable to the masses and seen as a means to a better life.

I predict that whoever can create the demand for human travel to either of these locations (they don’t even need to be the source of how we’d get there) will dwarf Bill Gates in the amount of money at his disposal.

Facebook followers, if you wish to comment, click the link leading to the original post. New followers on the blog itself are always welcome. :-)

What Really Happened Last Week in Montana


Warning: Use of undefined constant user_level - assumed 'user_level' (this will throw an Error in a future version of PHP) in /homepages/37/d209111074/htdocs/robschwenck/wp-content/plugins/ultimate-google-analytics/ultimate_ga.php on line 524

I just received this as an email forward and felt it was worthy to pass along. Personally, I’m glad I was not there as I would have probably gotten “confrontational.”

“By now you have probably heard that President Obama came to Montana last Friday. However, there are many things that the major news has not covered. I feel that since Bill and I live here and we were at the airport on Friday I should share some facts with you. Whatever you decide to do with the information is up to you. If you chose to share this email with others I do ask that you DELETE my email address before you forward this on.

On Wednesday, August 5th it was announced locally that the President would be coming here. There are many groups here that are against his healthcare and huge spending so those groups began talking and deciding on what they were going to do. The White House would not release ANY details other than the date.

On about Tuesday Bill found out that they would be holding the “Town Hall” at the airport. (This is only because Bill knows EVERYONE at the airport) Our airport is actually located outside of (tiny town) in a very remote location. Nothing is around there. They chose to use a hangar that is the most remotely located hangar. You could not pick a more remote location, and you can not get to it easily. It is totally secluded from the public.

FYI: We have many areas in Belgrade and Bozeman which could have held a large amount of folks with sufficient parking. (gymnasiums/auditoriums). All of which have chairs and tables, and would not have to be SHIPPED IN!! $$$$$

During the week, cargo by the TONS was being shipped in constantly. Airport employees could not believe how it just kept coming. Though it was our President coming several people expressed how excessive it was, especially during a recession. $$$$$

Late Tuesday/early Wednesday the 12th, they said that tickets would be handed out on Thursday 9am at two locations and the president would be arriving around 12:30 Friday.

Thursday morning about 600 tickets were passed out. However, 1500 were printed at a Local printing shop per White House request. Hmmmm……900 tickets just DISAPPEARED.

This same morning someone called into the radio from the local UPS branch and said that THOUSANDS of Dollars of Lobster were shipped in for Obama. Montana has some of the best beef in the nation!!! And it would have been really wonderful to help out the local economy. Anyone heard of the Recession?? Just think…with all of the traveling the White House is doing. $$$$$ One can only imagine what else we are paying for.

On Friday Bill and I got out to the airport about 10:45am. The groups that wanted to protest Obama’s spending and healthcare had gotten a permit to protest and that area was roped off. But that was not to be. A large bus carrying SEIU (Service Employees International Union) members drove up onto the area (illegal)and unloaded right there. It was quite a commotion and there were specifically 2 SEIU men trying to make trouble and start a fight. Police did get involved and arrested the one man but they said they did not have the manpower to remove the SEIU crowd.

The SEIU crowd was very organized and young. About 99% were under the age of 30 and they were not locals! They had bullhorns and PROFESSIONALLY made signs. Some even wore preprinted T-shirts. Oh, and Planned Parenthood folks were with them…..professing abortion rights with their T-shirts and preprinted signs. (BTW, all these folks did have a permit to protest in ANOTHER area)

Those against healthcare/spending moved away from the SEIU crowd to avoid confrontation. They were orderly and respectful. Even though SEIU kept coming over and walking through, continuing to be very intimidating and aggressive at the direction of the one SEIU man.

So we had Montana folks from ALL OVER the state with their homemade signs and their DOGS with homemade signs. We had cowboys, nurses, doctors you name it. There was even a guy from Texas who had been driving through. He found out about the occasion, went to the store, made a sign, and came to protest.

If you are wondering about the press…..Well, all of the major networks were over by that remote hangar I mentioned. They were conveniently parked on the other side of the buildings FAR away. None of these crowds were even visible to them. I have my doubts that they knew anything about the crowds.

We did have some local news media around us from this state and Idaho. Speaking of the local media…they were invited. However, all questions were to be turned into the White House in advance of the event. Wouldn’t want anyone to have to think off the top of their head.

It was very obvious that it was meant to be totally controlled by the White House. Everything was orchestrated down to the last detail to make it appear that Montana is just crazy for Obama and government healthcare. Even those people that talked about their insurance woes……..the White House called our local HRDC (Human Resource and Development Committee) and asked for names. Then the White House asked those folks to come. Smoke and mirrors…EVERYTHING was staged!!!!!!!!!!!

I am very dismayed about what I learned about our current White House. The amount of control and manipulation was unbelievable. I felt I was not living in the United States of America, more like the USSR!! I was physically nauseous. Bill and I have been around when Presidents or Heads of State visit. It has NEVER been like this. I am truly very frightened for our country. America needs your prayers and your voices. If you care about our country please get involved. Know the issues. And let Congress hear your voices again and again!! If they are willing to put forth so much effort to BULLY a small town one can only imagine what is going on in Washington, DC. Scary!!”

Attention Facebook readers: If you would like to comment, follow the link to the “original post” to comment directly on the blog. Followers are welcome, too. :-)