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Tuesday, June 27, 2017

URI group investigates impacts of diet, exercise on development of dementia

Disciplines from across University, community partners bring new perspectives to research
Faculty, staff and graduate students from a broad range of disciplines at the University of Rhode Island are taking on one of society’s most vexing health challenges: how to prevent or slow the onset of dementia through changes in diet and exercise.

What sets the Lifestyle Interventions Group apart is its inclusion of disciplines beyond the typical confines of brain science, as well as its engagement with organizations, communities and individuals from around the state. 

This holistic perspective expands and enriches avenues of investigation, with the objective of providing the scientific underpinnings to support practical changes in behavior that can improve people’s lives, said William Renehan, associate director of the George and Anne Ryan Institute for Neuroscience at URI and a founder of the group.

The idea that simple changes in behavior could reduce the risk of developing dementia intrigues Renehan, who noted that separate studies by the National Institutes of Health and the Alzheimer’s Association looked at the role of exercise and diet in the context of dementia and reached starkly different conclusions. 

Flying Will Get More Complicated If The Dept. Of Homeland Security Gets It’s Way

Just when you didn’t think flying could get any worse, it very well may.

It is possible in the near future your electronic life is going to be more difficult when you fly the not so friendly skies.  

The Department of Homeland Security announced that they are thinking about expanding the electronics ban to more than 371 airports. 

 The idea is to extend the ban to Europe, Africa, and maybe some domestic airports.  So far no other country has an electronic ban, however Britain is talking about one.

Homeland Security secretary John Kelly told a House of Representatives panel that they are looking at an additional 71 airports. 

CNBC reported that Kelly will be attending a conference next week in Malta  “to present what we think are the minimum increased security standards … and present those to people to say if you meet these standards we will not ban large electronics.” Homeland security refused to say which were the 71 airports under consideration.

So what will happen if the airports do not cooperate with the US?  They will be put on an “affected airports” list.

Monday, June 26, 2017

State Police interview owner of George’s of Galilee for threat against state Senator

By Bob Plain in Rhode Island’s Future

Related image
Server is sick? Tough! Work or don't get paid.
A pair of public documents contain conflicting theories about who sent state Senator Maryellen Goodwin a threatening email this week concerning earned sick time legislation that said, in part, “The more you meddle with the hand that feeds you, the more you risk getting bit. We are fucking fed up and extremely close to violent opposition.”

Kevin Durfee, owner of George’s of Galilee, concedes he owns the email address the threatening message came from, but in a subsequent email to Goodwin he said he “did not write the email nor do I agree with what was written.”

State Police report filed a day before Durfee sent Goodwin the second email suggests otherwise.

In the report, provided to several news organizations by House Spokesman Greg Pare, the man police “identified as the sender” told them “he was upset with the upcoming legislation that would have an effect on his business” and “apologized for the email that he sent,” according to the report.

The police report says “he will send the Senator an apology letter immediately.”

The email to Goodwin does not contain any apology.

Both the email and the narrative from the police report are pictured below.

Wingnuts of the Weekend

Pic of the Moment

At the Charlestown Gallery, starting July 1


The Really BIG Summer Group Show 2017

25 Artists
Paintings, Sculpture, Photography

You are invited to attend an artists reception:
Saturday, July 1st / 5:30 - 8:00PM

Over 100 new works of art
Showing from July 1st - July 31st

Charlestown Gallery
5000 South County Trail, Charlestown RI (401) 364-0120

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Be careful around wildlife

DEM reminds public to avoid contact with young wildlife that appear abandoned

Photo by Will Collette
At this time of year, people may observe wildlife such as fawns that appear abandoned, as their mothers are out foraging for food.

Homeowners may also notice snapping turtles laying eggs on their property. People should avoid approaching or disturbing these animals.

Unless a dead doe is found nearby, fawns are not considered abandoned. 

During the first week following birth, fawns are incapable of following their mother and will often lie in a curled position on the ground hidden in grass or sparse brush.

Typically the mothers are nearby and will come to the fawn a few times during the day or after dark for feedings.

Anyone who observes a fawn in this condition should leave it alone, as the doe will return.

They are also advised to:

Dog of the week

Meet Popo
Animal Rescue Rhode Island

Polo is a very sweet, medium sized dog who loves to play!

He knows how to entertain himself, but he would much rather share his adventures with you.

Stop by ARRI and meet this wonderful boy today!

Please stop by our shelter located at 506B Curtis Corner Road in Peace Dale or call 401-783-7606 for more information about Polo or our many other adoptable pets waiting for their new forever homes.

You can also visit our website at

And don’t forget our furry friends at the Charlestown Animal Shelter.

Trump ‘Simply Does Not Care’ About People With HIV/AIDS

6 members of Trump’s task force on HIV/AIDS quit, saying Trump doesn’t care 
By Naydeane May 

Image result for Trump & AIDS policyAlmost 25% of the President-appointed task force on HIV/AIDS resigned last week in frustration over President Trump’s policies. 

The resignation was announced by an open letter sent to Newsweek. Scott Schoettes, counsel and HIV Project director at Lambda Legal, wrote that there is no strategy, no input from experts to formulate policy, and the worst: promotes policy that harms people with HIV/AIDS, and halts or reverses gains in the fight against the disease. The board members feel that Trump just doesn’t care.

Most concerning, Schoettes wrote that:
As advocates for people living with HIV, we have dedicated our lives to combating this disease and no longer feel we can do so effectively within the confines of an advisory body to a president who simply does not care.
A good deal of the reason the board members resigned was over the AHCA (American Health Care Act) pushed by Republicans. The bill would make it very difficult for people with AIDS, make it more difficult to receive adequate healthcare, and possibly keep them from getting treatment.

Sunday, June 25, 2017

Straight talk on Trumpcare

From the guy who got us Obamacare
President Barack Obama

Image may contain: one or more people and textOur politics are divided. They have been for a long time. And while I know that division makes it difficult to listen to Americans with whom we disagree, that’s what we need to do today.

I recognize that repealing and replacing the Affordable Care Act has become a core tenet of the Republican Party.

Still, I hope that our Senators, many of whom I know well, step back and measure what’s really at stake, and consider that the rationale for action, on health care or any other issue, must be something more than simply undoing something that Democrats did.

We didn’t fight for the Affordable Care Act for more than a year in the public square for any personal or political gain – we fought for it because we knew it would save lives, prevent financial misery, and ultimately set this country we love on a better, healthier course.

Nor did we fight for it alone. Thousands upon thousands of Americans, including Republicans, threw themselves into that collective effort, not for political reasons, but for intensely personal ones – a sick child, a parent lost to cancer, the memory of medical bills that threatened to derail their dreams.

Trumpcare, summarized

Image may contain: 2 people, text

You don't have to be Einstein, though it helps

Image may contain: one or more people

Going solar will get even easier

By TIM FAULKNER/ecoRI News staff

EDITORS NOTE: In Charlestown, you have until September 8 to sign up for Solarize Charlestown. This program offers potentially lower cost installations through a group-buying contract.

Rhode Island’s solar industry is no longer a fledgling subset of the amorphous "green" economy, but a rapidly growing business sector with some of the best financial incentives in the country.

In a recent report from the Office of Energy Resources (OER), renewable-energy jobs, led by solar energy, has increased 66 percent in two years. Rhode Island has some 1,700 solar jobs, up 16 percent in 2016. The state ranks second in the country for green-energy jobs as a percentage of the workforce. Solar firms are growing, with 18 percent growth in companies between six and 24 employees.

While the Ocean State doesn’t rank in the top 10 of solar power per capita, Rhode Island ranks third for “solar-energy friendliness” in a report by the solar advocacy website Solar Power Rocks. The state earns an overall grade of A, whereas in 2014 Rhode Island earned a D, The grading is based on solar policies, like the renewable portfolio standard, and incentives, such as tax breaks.

The most eye-popping statistic from the Solar Power Rocks report is Rhode Island’s estimated four-year payback on investment, meaning a new solar array will pay for itself in about four years. The quick payback matches Massachusetts, the top state in the ranking, and is well above the seven-year payback in Connecticut. Most states have a payback of 10 years or longer.

Several bills in the General Assembly will further boost Rode Island’s solar stature and grow businesses. 

Week 22 in review

Week 22

Mosquito Monitoring, Testing Begins Across Rhode Island

First Group Tested This Season Is Negative For West Nile And EEE

The Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management (DEM) today announced the first batch of mosquitoes trapped and tested this season for West Nile Virus (WNV) and Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE) are negative.

Beginning in June each year and as part of disease monitoring efforts in the state, DEM regularly traps mosquitoes for testing by the Rhode Island Department of Health (RIDOH). Test results are issued weekly – with special advisories as needed.

The first trapping, conducted on June 5, included 20 traps and 41 mosquito pools. Test results are pending for the 121 pools trapped on June 12.

With WNV and EEE established throughout the state, the public is reminded to eliminate mosquito breeding grounds and avoid bites, where possible. The following precautions are advised:

Trump’s Twitter Bombs

Why does Trump attack US allies?

Image result for Trump tweets & germanyDonald Trump missed his opportunity to become a General Patton-style military commander and glorious war hero back in the Vietnam era. He surely would’ve been the greatest in history, to hear him tell it.

But, alas, he says some unspecified foot problem (or something or other) kept him from the privilege of actually getting to go fight in that war. Bad luck, I’m sure. 

But now that The Donald is the commander-in-chief for real, his inner warrior has been given a second chance to bloom, and this time he’s fully enlisted.

In recent weeks, President Trump has (1) escalated a running war of words against Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany, (2) bombed the European leaders of NATO with explosive charges that they’re unworthy of his support, (3) launched a fierce new barrage of tough rhetoric in his extralegal offensive to ban all travel to the U.S. by anyone from six Muslim nations, and (4) opened an entirely new battlefront by attacking the mayor of London with one of his Twitter missiles.

Saturday, June 24, 2017

A catalog of every major Trump lie since inauguration

"Trump's Lies": The Collected Works

In an effort to make sure that people do not become "numb" to the constant lies told by President of the United States Donald Trump, the New York Times has now published, in one convenient place, "nearly every outright lie he has told publicly since taking the oath of office."

Compiled by the newspaper's David Leonhardt and Stuart A. Thompson, the catalog was published online Friday and will appear in print over the weekend.

"There is simply no precedent for an American president to spend so much time telling untruths," the Times reports. 

"Every president has shaded the truth or told occasional whoppers. No other president — of either party — has behaved as Trump is behaving. He is trying to create an atmosphere in which reality is irrelevant."

In chronological order, starting on the day of his inauguration, here are the documented lies of President Trump:

Free market health'll be GREAT!

For more cartoons by Ruben Bolling, CLICK HERE.

Feed hungry kids this summer

Rhode Island Community Food Bank

Kids holding produce at a food pantry

Food Bank Launches Summer Food Drive

Summer Food Drive Poster
During the summer, the need for food assistance among families spikes as children lose access to the healthy, nutritious meals they normally receive at school. To help fill the gap throughout the summer months, the Food Bank is asking the community to support the Summer Food Drive.
Here’s how you can help:
First Gentleman of Rhode Island and Chair of the Summer Food Drive Andy Moffit launched the campaign along with Food Bank CEO Andrew Schiff by encouraging Rhode Islanders to join the effort and help their neighbors in need.

Help Feed Our Hungry Neighbors

Rhode Island Community Food Bank
RI Community Food Bank
200 Niantic Avenue
Providence, RI 02907
P: (401) 942-MEAL (6325)

Building to better weather the storm

MIT researchers design tool to help builders build storm-resistant buildings
Anne Wilson Yu | Concrete Sustainability Hub

Inspectors assess the damage to a home on the Florida coast following Hurricane Matthew, which struck in October 2016.The Atlantic hurricane season has officially begun and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) is predicting “above normal” storm activity this year. 

That could mean significant damage to coastal communities — some of which are still recovering from last year’s hurricane season.

As officials in hurricane-prone communities are calling on residents to be prepared for upcoming storms, researchers with the MIT Concrete Sustainability Hub (CSHub) are encouraging officials to make preparation a priority from the very earliest stages of building design, starting with data-driven changes to building codes.

To help, CSHub has developed a new dashboard that lets users calculate, on a county-by-county basis, the right amount to spend up front on hazard mitigation for residential buildings in hurricane-prone communities along on the U.S. East and Gulf coasts. 

Feeling the Heat

How Fish Are Migrating from Warming Waters

The Cape Cod Canal is a serpentine artificial waterway that winds eight miles from Cape Cod Bay to Buzzards Bay. On warm summer evenings, anglers jostle along its banks casting for striped bass. 

That’s what 29-year-old Justin Sprague was doing the evening of August 6, 2013, when he caught a fish from the future. 

At first, Sprague thought the enormous fish that engulfed his Storm blue herring lure was a shark. But as he battled the behemoth in the gloaming — the fish leaping repeatedly, crashing down in sheets of spray — he realized he’d hooked something far weirder.

When the fisherman finally dragged his adversary onto the beach, a small crowd gathered to admire the creature’s metallic body, flared dorsal fin, and rapier-like bill. Sprague had caught a sailfish.

It doesn’t take an ichthyologist to know that sailfish don’t belong in the Cape Cod Canal. Istiophorus albicans favors the tropics and subtropics; it so rarely visits New England that Massachusetts didn’t even have a state record.

But strange catches — including cobia and torpedo rays — have become more commonplace.

Want To Fix The Budget? Collect Taxes.

Why Trump, Kushner & Co. take an unbusinesslike approach to balancing the books
By Vic Simon

Image result for effect of cuts to IRS budgetThe Republicans are about to slash the budget of the top money-making department of the U.S. government, an agency that brings in $300 for every $1 it spends.

Despite returns on investment that any CEO would die for, Republicans hate it. In seven years, they have cut its budget seven times.

The Internal Revenue Service was responsible for bringing in $93 out of every $100 the government took in last year.

That’s $3.3 trillion in revenues while spending just $11 billion on itself. According to an estimate by the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, the IRS fails to collect $600 billion a year in taxes, mainly because it doesn’t have the bodies to do its job.

That’s $160 billion more than Trump’s projected government deficit in 2018. And they aren’t new taxes either, just taxes that are owed but not paid.

Talk about your low hanging fruit.

Which is where First Son-in-Law Jared Kushner comes into the picture. He has been assigned the task of making the government more businesslike.

Every business must keep revenue coming in the door. Starving the parts of the business that bring in the bucks is as un-businesslike as you can get. Jared Kushner would be crazy to nickel-and-dime IRS tax enforcement.

Friday, June 23, 2017

Who would oppose taking guns away from wife-beaters and domestic abusers? Why, our area village idiots, of course.

By Steve Ahlquist in Rhode Island's Future

“As a volunteer leader for Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense In America, I am very pleased to see Rep Tanzi’s bill that takes guns away from dangerous domestic abusers pass out of committee in the RI House of Representatives,” said Jennifer Boylan,

“Over the last 3 years, there has been undeniable support and need for this bill. Advocates, law enforcement, and policy experts all supported it. The momentum around the bill in the capitol is strong, and I am very pleased to see that the House Judiciary Committee did the right thing for survivors and victims of domestic abuse.”

The House Judiciary Committee last night voted to send Representative Teresa Tanzi (Democrat, District 34, Narragansett, South Kingstown)’s bill to take guns out of the hands of domestic abusers to the floor for a full vote by the Rhode Island House of Representatives.

Rep. Justin Price (R-Richmond) who thinks "Gun Control Does Not
Work." But has this country ever actually TRIED to control guns?
This is the first substantial piece of gun legislation to pass out of committee since the tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary School in neighboring Connecticut and a major victory for advocates of gun control in the state.

Only five representatives, Cale Keable (D) and four Republicans, Sherry Roberts, Justin Price, Patricia Morgan and Blake Filippi voted against the measure. Keable is the chair of the committee and the only Democrat to oppose the bill.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Charlestown was responsible for the election of Blake “Flip” Filippi who is now a resident of Charlestown after being sued by his mother for allegedly cheating him on investments (Details: click HERE and HERE). Filippi is an avowed Libertarian as well as Republican, though he was willing to set aside his so-called free market principles in an effort to ban Uber and Lyft from Block Island.

Richmond voter are responsible for electing Justin Price to the House. Price is probably the most radical right-wingnut in the General Assembly, believing in guns for all but no anti-cancer vaccine for children, the “Chem-Trails” conspiracy that contends the United Nations is spreading mind-controlling chemicals through the contrails of high-flying jets an loves anti-government armed militia groups.

So of course these two think it’s wrong to try to keep guns out of the hands of men most likely to use them on their wives, girlfriends and children.  – Will Collette.