Sunday, December 17, 2017

Is your blood pressure too high?

I don't intend to make this blog a medical one but I do at times mention findings from medical research that are of particular interest -- and blood pressure is very widely attended to.  Many doctors measure it every time you visit. So it is clearly of some importance.  In particular, high blood pressure is often a precursor to heart attacks and stroke -- which are no fun at all.

So it attracted a lot of controversy recently when the American medical authorities (The American College of Cardiology/American Heart Association (ACC/AHA)) increased the level at which blood pressure becomes a problem.  Previously the maximum "safe" level was 140/90, which happens to be about where my blood pressure levels are. The new "safe" level is 130/80.  Above that level you should receive treatment to bring your pressure down.  That has of course thrown tens of millions into the "diseased" basket -- which produced howls of outrage from many sources -- including me.

A recent article In JAMA by a Dr. Philip Greenland has however hit back and said that the problem is the high level of unhealthy lifestyles among Americans -- including unhealthy diets.  He said that the critics are shooting the messenger -- and his article is overall a good defence of the new guidelines

An article by the ever-skeptical Prof. John  Ioannidis is more cautious, however.  He doesn't altogether disagree with the new guidelines but points out that the reseasrch on whih it is based has some rather large flaws if used to guide policy.  It is good reseearch but as a basis for public policy guidelins, extraordinary rigor is required in the research.  The big flaw in the existing research being that it is based on an unrepresentative sample of people who already had heart symptoms.  How far can we generalize from them?  Possibly not at all and probably only weakly,

I would like to add some further criticisms:  Some of the benefits of therapy were tiny.  Adding one extra drug to a conventional regime, for instance, gave an improvement in health outcomes of just one half of one percent (0.54). That could well be illusory.  The authors appear to rely on the finding being statistically significant but, given the large sample size (9361) practically everything is guaranteed to be significant. Statistical significance in that case means nothing.

One also has to be pretty suspicious about the proportion of the population who have ideal cardiovascular health -- from 0.5% in a population of African American individuals to 12% in workers in a South Florida health care organization. One understands that Africans do tend to die younger but saying that 99.5% of that population has some degree of risk seems extreme -- perhaps extreme enough for the finding to be ignored.

A final difficulty I see lies principally with Dr Greenland's article.  He stresses the importance of a "healthy" diet in getting heart attacks down.  That's a very conventional view  but is it right?  And if it is right, how do we know our diet is healthy?  Up until a couple of years ago fat was regarded as bad and sugar as safe, but that has now been stood on its head. The opposite is now the accepted wisdom.  So color me skeptical.  If there is such a thing as a healthy diet, I doubt if anyone knows what it is.  So what do I eat to avoid a heart attack?  I don't think Dr Greenland or anyone else knows.

So I come down to the conclusion by Prof.  Ioannidis, who states, "The ability to generalize these gains across diverse settings in clinical practice and to use limited resources wisely remains an open challenge."  In other words, we don't know when someone would be helped by the new guidelines.  They are a long way from gospel   -- JR


A treasonous President leaves a treasonous legacy>/b>

Peter Stzrok was the Deputy Assistant Director of the FBI and second in command over counterintelligence, since demoted.  He is a liberal progressive who supported O.  He felt that Trump was a security risk to the United States.  He took it upon himself to ensure that Trump could never be elected.  Once elected, he did everything in his power to undermine his presidency.  He became a leading member of the Mueller team to indict Trump.  He had a secret, untraceable phone with a direct link to Hillary Clinton.

We now know via text messages that Stzrok met with the Deputy Director of the FBI, Andrew McCabe, to discuss his "insurance policy" against Trump.  This happened.  This is direct evidence that our government colluded by overt acts to prevent Trump from being elected, and, once elected, to be unable to govern.  It is an attempt to subvert the election process and to overthrow the existing government of the US.

Stzrok may have the best intentions and may think he knows what is best for the US, but he is guilty of treason.  It is not his decision.  He also intervened in the Clinton email scandal changing the phrase "grossly negligence" to "extremely careless."  It was to ensure Clinton was not indicted, leaving Trump as the only choice.  It is believed that he took the Trump dossier to the FISA court and knowingly used this fabricated document as justification to spy on Americans and the opponent's campaign.

Trying searching Bruce Orh on Google.  The first time I did, I had to check a box indicating I was not a robot.  There were no hits in the top ten.  Bruce Ohr, the number four man in the DOJ, was recently demoted because of his collusion with the law firm and the British spy who fabricated the Trump dossier.  As it turns out, his wife, Nellie, works for the law firm and worked with the US DOJ on Russian affairs.  She was part of the team digging up dirt on Trump.  This dossier was paid for by Clinton and the DNC as opposition research, then dressed up by the FBI and the DOJ as justification to spy on Americans.  It appears the DOJ colluded with Hillary Clinton, the DNC, and the Russians to fabricate the Trump dossier.  It is likely that Orh authorized payment for further research against Trump.  Orh used his wife to dig up dirt on Trump then used the dossier to spy on members of the Trump team before and after the election.

Then we have the Mueller team.  It is constructed primarily of Clinton supporters.  The same posse that tried its best to prevent Trump from being elected is now its judge, jury, and executioner.

What we have here is the US government--namely the DOJ, FBI, and the CIA--picking winners and losers.  We have a government willing to subvert the law and the US election process to prevent someone whom it believes is detrimental to leading the US from being elected.  We have, in fact, a political campaign fabricating documents against its opponent and using the vast resources of the US government to use these documents to illegally spy on Americans and undermine a political opponent and to undermine the legitimate government of the United States.  It is ironic that the government, in fact, was the one colluding with the Russian.  It was not the Russians undermining the US election process; it was the Clintons, DNC, DOJ, FBI, and the CIA.  This is the biggest political scandal ever, bar none.   I don't even mention Sanders.

I won't go into the Uranium One deal here either, but it is another example of treason, selling out our national interest to the highest bidder for personal profit.

We are at an inflection point with the Deep State. The Deep State either wins and Trump is impeached, or the Deep State gets cleaned out.  An Inspector General is looking into the allegations.  I suspect it will find nothing, not because there is nothing there to find; it has to ensure that nothing is found.  The Mueller investigation may turn out to be the best event ever for Trump.  He may well be able to keep his promise to clean out the Deep State.  In the end, only one will be left standing.  It will either be Trump or the Deep State.  Place your bets now.  Who do I think will win?  It is one man against the vast resources of the state and mainstream media.  I think the odds of Trump winning are similar to him winning the election--highly improbable.  If Trump wins, could it spell the end of the FBI as we know it?  Its corruption knows no bounds.  It must change.

For those liberal progressives that don't care as long as Trump is booted out of office, be careful what you wish for.  What the liberal progressives can do at this point can be done against them in the future.  It is treason of the highest order.  It is a political scandal orders of magnitude above Watergate.  People of all political persuasions should be concerned.  Put your partisan politics aside and be objective.  This cannot end well.



The FBI: Has it Become the Secret Police?

Let’s not miss the most damning dimension of the texts between Strzok and Page. If you read all of their texts it becomes clear that their complaints about candidate Trump and his supporters are nothing more than ad hominem slurs - no different, really, than Hillary’s “deplorables” remark or Obama’s dismissal of Americans who "cling to their guns and religion" in bitterness. They are an attempt to dismiss a legitimate political movement and the, human aspirations behind, it with irrelevant but pungent slander. They are not texting about policy differences, social problems or even constitutional issues. In fact, these are law officers at the highest levels, who took an oath to protect The Constitution of the United States and they are actively engaged in discussing ways of denying a legitimate political movement its constitutional right to a free and fair election. This is dangerous and disturbing and it is a

This text from Strzok is the proof:

"I want to believe the path u threw out 4 consideration in Andy's office-that there's no way he gets elected-but I'm afraid we can't take that risk.It's like an insurance policy in unlikely event u die be4 you're 40”

The very idea of these three sitting in the office of the deputy director of the most powerful law enforcement agency spinning ideas for an insurance policy against the unlikely election of True against the howling headwinds of the mainstream press and other efforts of the establishment should scare anyone interested in preserving The Constitution. There are only two possible explanations for their behavior and the sinister direction of this and other tweets. One might be that they are so sure that they know better what is best for this nation and all her people that they feel it incumbent upon them to become our unseen benefactors - manipulating the results of elections and saving us from our own stupidity. The other, which I find more likely, is that they knew that they are not the pure hearted “public servants” that they portray themselves as and that they are at personal risk if the status quo of and the established power structure are shaken up.

I think the second explanation much more likely- because of the lack of substantive reasons and complaints in their texts and because the slander they throw at Mr Trump and his supporters fairly reeks of hatred, anger and vengeance. These are the blind feelings of a threatened animal who feels attacked or perhaps the cringing of a fraud in danger of being exposed. Whatever the case, they are not the arguments of a passionate believer in something good.

How did it come to this? How did the supposed protectors of our laws and civil order come to feel entitled to despise us and contemplate (we still don’t know the extent to which they did or didn’t carry them out) plans to thwart our political wishes? It is the arrogance of Progressivism, the entrenched interest of a class of political actors who see themselves as entitled to be our leaders  and the loss of faith in any ethical, moral or constitutional standard.



Trump Undoing Obama's 'Secret List of More Than 600 Regulations,' OMB Offical Says

In an Op-Ed on Wednesday, an Office of Management and Budget (OMB) administrator declared that the Trump Administration is undoing the “needlessly ‘secret’ list of more than 600 regulations" created by President Barack Obama before leaving office.

Neomi Rao, administrator of OMB’s Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs also said the Trump deregulation effort is ahead of schedule, in her Wall Street Journal column detailing plans to further eliminate burdensome government red tape:

“This week, the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs released a status report on agencies’ progress on regulations. In only its first 10 months, the Trump administration has far exceeded its promise to eliminate two existing regulations for each new one—an unprecedented advance against the regulatory state.

“By comparison, in his final eight months, President Obama saddled the economy with as much as $15.2 billion in regulatory costs, while hiding from the public a needlessly “secret” list of more than 600 regulations. Reversing this trend sends a clear message to families and businesses: It’s OK to plan for the future without the looming threat of red tape.

“On Thursday OIRA will publish the administration’s first Regulatory Plan and Agenda, which covers all federal agencies for fiscal year 2018. The plan calls for the administration to drive already substantial reductions in regulatory costs even further. This is a fundamental shift from the policies of the past.”



For more blog postings from me, see  TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, GREENIE WATCHPOLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, and Paralipomena (Occasionally updated),  a Coral reef compendium and an IQ compendium. (Both updated as news items come in).  GUN WATCH is now mainly put together by Dean Weingarten. I also put up occasional updates on my Personal blog and each day I gather together my most substantial current writings on THE PSYCHOLOGIST.

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1 comment:

Bob Smith said...

I assume the change in blood pressure recommendations has but one purpose: drug sales. When they changed the cholesterol recommendations, in many cases to sub-normal levels (which my cardiologist pushes heavily and I reject, given the side effects of statins), sales of statins tripled.