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Author Topic: Human Life is Fragile but EVERY Life is Valuable  (Read 6632 times)

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AGelbert

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Re: Human Life is Fragile but EVERY Life is Valuable
« Reply #165 on: January 25, 2019, 09:39:54 pm »
Agelbert NOTE: These social scientists have empirically discovered what Paul, the Apostle of Jesus Christ, made clear over two thousand years ago about the importance of equality in human society. ✨

Quote
Now therefore perform the doing of it; that as there was a readiness to will, so there may be a performance also out of that which ye have. For if there be first a willing mind, it is accepted according to that a man hath, and not according to that he hath not.

For I mean not that other men be eased, and ye burdened: But by an equality, that now at this time your abundance may be a supply for their want, that their abundance also may be a supply for your want: that there may be equality:

As it is written, He that had gathered much had nothing over; and he that had gathered little had no lack. -- 2 Corinthians 8:11-15 King James Version (KJV)
 
Imprint: Allen Lane
Published: 07/06/2018
ISBN: 9781846147418
Length: 352  Pages
Dimensions: 222mm x 33mm x 144mm
Weight: 468g
RRP: £20.00

Why is the incidence of mental illness in the UK twice that in Germany? Why are Americans three times more likely than the Dutch to develop gambling problems? Why is child well-being so much worse in New Zealand than Japan? As this groundbreaking study demonstrates, the answer to all these hinges on inequality.

InThe Spirit Level Richard Wilkinson and Kate Pickett put inequality at the centre of public debate by showing conclusively that less-equal societies fare worse than more equal ones across everything from education to life expectancy. The Inner Level now explains how inequality affects us individually, how it alters how we think, feel and behave. It sets out the overwhelming evidence that material inequalities have powerful psychological effects: when the gap between rich and poor increases, so does the tendency to defi ne and value ourselves and others in terms of superiority and inferiority. A deep well of data and analysis is drawn upon to empirically show, for example, that low social status is associated with elevated levels of stress, and how rates of anxiety and depression are intimately related to the inequality which makes that status paramount.

Wilkinson and Pickett describe how these responses to hierarchies evolved, and why the impacts of inequality on us are so severe. In doing so, they challenge the conception that humans are innately competitive and self-interested. They undermine, too, the idea that inequality is the product of 'natural' differences in individual ability.  

This book sheds new light on many of the most urgent problems facing societies today, but it is not just an index of our ills. It demonstrates that societies based on fundamental equalities, sharing and reciprocity generate much higher levels of well-being, and lays out the path towards them.

https://www.penguin.co.uk/books/188/188607/the-inner-level/9781846147418.html
Hope deferred maketh the heart sick: but when the desire cometh, it is a tree of life. Pr. 13:12

AGelbert

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Quote
Hazel
There's a really nice drone medical supply delivery system in Rwanda, using fixed wing drones for their much higher speed. It's been running for a couple of years with great results. Real Engineering has a really nice review of the design considerations, technology, and economics:


Related Article:


Agelbert NOTE: As usual when when the welfare of people in Africa is defended, an alleged defender of the biosphere rants about overpopulation there killing off the fauna and flora. As usual when I spot these biosphere math challenged cretins, I weigh in with some facts:


Damien
Ok I think we got humans covered, over 9 billion of them left should be enough,., but what about all the species going extinct with no habitat and no water? To they not deserve to live? Why do we attach more value to human life? Surely this planet belongs to animals just as much as humans...

Lorenz HansenDamien
Every species cares mostly about their own, a lot just about them self. Same with most humans. Otherwise we would never eat meat, have pets or milk slaves. Caring about humans isn't wrong. Saving everybody born is the best way we know to reduce birth rates, and with it population. Developed countries have a unsustainable birthrate (below 2 kids per woman). Have a look at japan. Population is already decreasing. Same will happen all over the western world. Just Asia and Africa are still growing.

Damien > Lorenz Hansen
That’s such an uneducated view, clearly you don’t understand eco systems and linkages. with that logic let’s just wipe the whole planet of all non-human species? Population is out of control, we’ve taken other species habitat, everything has consequences and it’s already hitting humans hard. No one talks about those communities’ horrible habit of having 15 kids instead of 2. Everything is connected, we destroy the eco system or kill one species it’ll destabilize everything and affect us as well.

Plus you’re talking about countries that are not the issue here. Undeveloped countries are the problem with uncontrolled populations and no jobs to give them.

agelbert > Damien

What you are ERRONEOUSLY doing is ASSUMING the SAME AGENCY (i.e. biosphere damaging ability) to each and every human that is alive. That is TYPICAL broad brush fragmentation of agency (i.e. share of responsibility for the damage) that absolves the major polluters of the massive pollution they are responsible for.   

The biosphere math facts clearly state that less than 17% of the human population, MOSTLY concentrated in wealthy countries, is DOING over 80% of the damage by consuming over 80% of the resources. Only about half (or less) of the MILITARY budgets alone of the wealthy countries could pay for bio-remediating the most impacted areas, stop the exploitation and care for and educate the high population growth poor there so they become good stewards instead of biosphere destroyers.

Since, according to the U.N., the richest 20% of the world's population uses 80% of the resources, the 'Fragmentation of Agency' pie chart for the damage done to the biosphere should look like this:

The fossil fuel industry, and almost half of the world’s 100 largest companies, want that 'Fragmentation of Agency' pie chart to look like this:

The REAL bottom line is that less than 17% of the human population is an existential threat to the ALL of the human population AND a large part of macroscopic species in the biosphere.

Quote
"Capitalist ideology claims that the world is perfectly ordered and everybody is in their place (i..e. everybody gets what they deserve). This self legitmating aspect of Capitalism is Socially Catastrophic. This is the Victorian view of the world." Rob Urie - Author " Zen Economics"

Damien > agelbert
What does your theory that rests on shaky grounds (assumes people in developing countries don’t have TVs, fridges, bikes, phones etc.) help resolve? So every should pollute as much as the 1%? Let’s have +15 degrees temperature increase and see what happens... how stupid and short sighted.
 
agelbert > Damien
It's not a theory. For a fellow who is quite ready to scold polite educated people like Lorenz Hansen for their "uneducated" view of pollution cause and effect, you appear amazingly uninformed.

Here is the key senence in what I wrote. Please ponder it.

Only about half (or less) of the MILITARY budgets alone of the wealthy countries could pay for bio-remediating the most impacted areas, stop the exploitation and care for and educate the high population growth poor there so they become good stewards instead of biosphere destroyers.

Damien, I agree with you that the biosphere is being destroyed by the stupidity and greed of the human species.

However, your purported solution will not work. WHY IS THAT? Well, if every high population growth country's population all disappeared within a decade from a plague (or something similar, whether accidental or intentioned), that 17% of we PLANETARY PARASITES would still be there doing 80% of the BIOSPHERE DESTRUCTION.

To believe otherwise is wishful thinking. We need to get our house in order and get OFF of hydrocarbons, stop polluting mining, energy, manufacturing, wars, pesticide use, etc. and start a massive emergency campaign to get back to 350 PPM of CO2.

If we don't, we only have "DEVELOPED" countries to blame, NOT the "underdeveloped" countries.



« Last Edit: June 25, 2019, 03:02:22 pm by AGelbert »
Hope deferred maketh the heart sick: but when the desire cometh, it is a tree of life. Pr. 13:12

AGelbert

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By Reuters on Aug 02, 2019 04:58 pm

Spanish 🕊 NGO Seeks Safe Port For 124 People Rescued in Mediterranean

NGO Proactiva 🕊 Open Arms rescue boat is seen at the port of Motril, southern Spain October 3, 2018. REUTERS/Juan Medina/File Photo

NGO Proactiva Open Arms rescue boatby Sam Edwards (Reuters) A Spanish charity rescue boat sought safe port on Friday after Italy rejected its request to disembark 124 people saved from two migrant rafts in the Mediterranean, the organization said. Non-governmental organization (NGO) rescue boats have largely disappeared from the Mediterranean over the last year as governments have tightened controls. Charity […] 

Read full story...
« Last Edit: November 28, 2019, 12:23:34 pm by AGelbert »
Hope deferred maketh the heart sick: but when the desire cometh, it is a tree of life. Pr. 13:12

AGelbert

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Did military people think it was funny or clever when Trump 🦀 said he prefers people who don’t get captured when asked about Senator John McCain?

Ron Wagner, Former USAF pilot in the Presidential Wing at Andrews AFB. Former airline pilot.
Updated Jan 6 · Upvoted by Steve Traugott, Former Staff Sergeant, Crew Chief, USAF and Don Harper, former US Military Combat Veteran-5 Tour at The United States of America (1978-2005)

Here is my “two cents worth,” although my personal stories about John McCain and other POWs might be worth a nickel or a dime.

I FLEW WITH McCAIN AND A LOT OF VIETNAM POWs

When the Vietnam POWs were released they were given huge priority in selecting their next assignments. That was a superb idea considering that their previous military duties over the past six to eight years had been as bad as it gets.

Many of them chose to fly in the Presidential Wing at Andrews AFB, so I got to train and fly with a lot of them. They survived inhumane, unbelievable torture. Not one of them was, nor will they ever be, perfectly all right.

And yet, I don’t know much about what they experienced because they rarely talked about it. I mostly picked up on symptoms. Let me give two examples.

THE SHARP-DRESSED MAJOR

One POW pilot in my squadron was a Major who had his uniforms tailor made and kept them crisp and perfect. You might think a tailor-made USAF uniform wouldn’t look different, but he was one sharp-dressed man. He looked perfect all the time because he would never again wear sloppy, ill-fitting clothing.

And when it came time to find a restaurant when we were out on an overnight mission, he had only one criterion for choosing one: it had to have carpeting. It was a little quirk of his that he had experienced enough meals on concrete floors that he wanted to dine on carpeting for the rest of his life.

THE CAPTAIN AND COLD SHOWERS

And then there’s the Captain, whom I think about most times that I turn on the shower water to let it warm up. It’s pretty strange, but it’s the truth: in 40 years, I have taken few showers without thinking about the story I’m going to relate.

The Captain told me showers were mandatory every couple of days—under pain of torture if they refused—until the temperature got down to 5 degrees C, which is 41 degrees F. Next time you take a shower, turn on the “cold” water and let it run for two minutes so that the warm 72-degree water in your pipes is gone and you get the 56-degree cold water that comes into your home. Now step under it and see how long you last. Your bathroom is 72 degrees and the “cold” water is around 56 degrees. Trust me, you will think it hurts. Try to imagine being outdoors at 42 degrees, with 42 degree water, and possibly some wind blowing.

Now choose: take that shower, or take a severe beating—whichever one you prefer.

When the POWs landed in Hawaii on their way back, they all took long hot showers, some stood in the shower for up to two hours. Think about that.

THREE DAYS VERSUS SEVEN YEARS

I hope this next thing comes across as the profound compliment I intend it to be.

At the end of my USAF pilot training, we went through two weeks of ground survival training. Three days of it was being locked up in a mock POW camp. And when I say “mock” you cannot imagine how mock it was. It was on an active USAF base, so we were safe. The “guards” were active duty enlisted airmen who were in no way going to truly harm an officer. They were given permission to make us hurt, but they had special techniques that did no harm. In other words, suffering was not even a remote possibility for us.

And the really big deal about it was that it lasted just three days, then they’d open the gates and we’d go for a big, hot meal. Then back to our rooms for hot showers and fresh clothes.

And yet, I will tell you I was terrified. It was horrible. It was demeaning.

And we never had to take a shower outdoors on a cold day with cold water.

My conclusion from that experience is that I truly cannot imagine enduring a real POW camp for a totally unknown length of time—never knowing when you would get out—and having real guards, and enduring torture that would leave you scarred for life. My little taste of it gave me enormous respect for the men who I would soon be training and flying with at Andrews.

FLYING WITH McCAIN

McCain returned to take command of a Naval flight training squadron, so as a USAF pilot I would normally have never flown with him. But within about two years he became the Navy’s liaison to the US Senate. He worked directly with Arizona Senator Barry Goldwater. In about 1977–78 I flew out to Phoenix to pick up Goldwater and bring him home to Andrews. McCain was at his side.

About halfway across the country, I sent my copilot back to the passenger seats and put McCain in the right seat and let him fly, including a night landing at Andrews. He did great and Goldwater gave him a “thumbs up.”

McCain had been famous as a POW, for reasons made clear in many other answers here, so I knew about him. He suffered more than most of them due to his father being an Admiral in the Navy. We never discussed it.

NOTHING FUNNY OR CLEVER ABOUT TRUMP

And Donald Pu**y-Grabbing Trump had the classless gall to say McCain wasn't a hero. I’d love to make Trump choose between taking a shower outdoors on a windy, 42-degree day, with 42-degree water, and a severe beating. Can I get a volunteer in case he refused to take the shower?!?! 👍👍👍

I can’t believe you even wrote “funny or clever” in your question.

Trump has no clue at all what it’s like to serve one’s country. McCain has served far, far more than almost anyone who hasn’t died in the line of service.

And we know how Trump treats the Gold Star families. Amazingly, more than 80% of Republicans approve of the job Trump is doing. What would it take for them to disapprove?

There is nothing “funny or clever” about Trump, and his moronic comments about John McCain are just one small example.

386.3k views  You upvoted this Anthony G. Gelbert

Chris Skuller
Oct 30, 2017 · 1,543 upvotes including Ron Wagner
Yeah. Although I can create a list 10 pages long condemning the current Republican party, it’s their approval of Trump despite his disrespect of McCain and Gold Star Families that really shows their true colors. I find it especially telling when they about NFL players kneeling during the Anthem being (somehow) disrespectful to the flag and enlisted soldiers, all the while approving of a President (currently 80% approval rating from Republicans) who has said such awful things. It disgusts me.

Edit: Since I wrote this back in October of 2017, I have seen a bunch more “true colors” moments from the current administration.

https://www.quora.com/Did-military-people-think-it-was-funny-or-clever-when-Trump-said-he-prefers-people-who-don%E2%80%99t-get-captured-when-asked-about-Senator-John-McCain

Hope deferred maketh the heart sick: but when the desire cometh, it is a tree of life. Pr. 13:12

AGelbert

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🍁 Autumn is in the Air 🍂
« Reply #169 on: September 18, 2019, 12:40:34 pm »
Hope deferred maketh the heart sick: but when the desire cometh, it is a tree of life. Pr. 13:12

AGelbert

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Hope deferred maketh the heart sick: but when the desire cometh, it is a tree of life. Pr. 13:12

Surly1

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Literal Vampire Capitalism.

Harvesting the Blood of America’s Poor: The Latest Stage of Capitalism
Blood has become big business in the United States and there is no shortage of corporations ready to exploit America’s most vulnerable populations in order to get a piece of the pie.




by Alan Macleod

For much of the world, donating blood is purely an act of solidarity; a civic duty that the healthy perform to aid others in need. The idea of being paid for such an action would be considered bizarre. But in the United States, it is big business. Indeed, in today’s wretched economy, where around 130 million Americans admit an inability to pay for basic needs like food, housing or healthcare, buying and selling blood is of the few booming industries America has left. 

The number of collection centers in the United States has more than doubled since 2005 and blood now makes up well over 2 percent of total U.S. exports by value. To put that in perspective, Americans’ blood is now worth more than all exported corn or soy products that cover vast areas of the country’s heartland. The U.S. supplies fully 70 percent of the world’s plasma, mainly because most other countries have banned the practice on ethical and medical grounds. Exports increased by over 13 percent, to $28.6 billion, between 2016 and 2017, and the plasma market is projected to “grow radiantly,” according to one industry report. The majority goes to wealthy European countries; Germany, for example, buys 15 percent of all U.S. blood exports. China and Japan are also key customers.

It is primarily the plasma– a golden liquid that transports proteins and red and white blood cells around the body– that makes it so sought after. Donated blood is crucial in treating medical conditions such as anemia and cancer and is commonly required to perform surgeries. Pregnant women also frequently need transfusions to treat blood loss during childbirth. Like all maturing industries, a few enormous bloodthirsty companies, such as Grifols and CSL, have come to dominate the American market.

But in order to generate such enormous profits, these vampiric corporations consciously target the poorest and most desperate Americans. One study found that the majority of donors in Cleveland generate more than a third of their income from “donating” blood. The money they receive, notes Professor Kathryn Edin of Princeton University, is literally “the lifeblood of the $2 a day poor.” Professor H. Luke Schaefer of the University of Michigan, Edin’s co-author of $2 a Day: Living on Almost Nothing in America, told MintPress News:

The massive increase in blood plasma sales is a result of an inadequate and in many places non-existent cash safety net, combined with an unstable labor market. Our experience is people need the money, that’s the primary reason people show up at plasma centers.”

Almost half of America is broke, and 58 percent of the country is living paycheck to paycheck, with savings of less than $1000. 37 million Americans go to bed hungry, including one-sixth of New Yorkers and almost half of South Bronx residents. And over half a million sleep on the streets on any given night, with many millions more in vehicles or relying on friends or family. It is in this context that millions in the red have turned to selling blood to make ends meet. In a very real sense then, these corporations are harvesting the blood of the poor, literally sucking the life out of them.

MintPress News spoke to a number of Americans who consistently donated plasma. Some of them did not want to be fully identified. But none were under any illusions about the system and how they were being exploited.

“The centers are never in a good part of town, always somewhere they can get a never ending supply of poor people desperate for that hundred bucks a week,” noted Andrew Watkins, who sold his blood in Pittsburgh, PA for around 18 months.

 The people who show up are a mix of disabled, working poor, homeless, single parents, and college students. With the exception of the college students who are looking for booze money, this is probably the easiest and most reliable income they have. Your job may fire you at any time when you’re on this level of society, but you always have blood. And selling your blood doesn’t count as a job or income when it comes to determining disability benefits, food stamps, or unemployment eligibility so it’s a source of money for the people who have absolutely nothing else.”

Rachel from Wisconsin, who donated hundreds of times over a seven-year period, also commented on the obvious socio-economic makeup of donors.

We were poor, all of us in there you could easily tell that we were on the lower ends of the income bracket. They incentivize you with bonuses and the more you donate in a month the more you’ll get paid, recruiting friends bonuses, holiday bonuses, etc.”

Keita Currier from Washington, D.C., noted how she and her husband had little choice but to continue visiting clinics in Maryland for years but resented their payment methods.

 They’re predatory, the price set for your plasma is based on a whim. For example, one place I donated the first five times you get $75, then you get 20, 20, 30, 50, 25. It’s random, it doesn’t matter, but they know you are desperate and if you don’t do your $30 donation you won’t get your 50 next time. Apparently, the plasma is worth something in the hundreds, so it is not surprising that you’re screwed over.”

 

Zombifying America’s poor

Respondents all agreed that they were indeed being exploited, but in more ways than one. Desperate Americans are allowed to donate twice per week (104 times per year). But losing that much plasma could have serious health consequences, most of which have not been studied Professor Schaefer warns, stressing that more research is necessary. Around 70 percent of donors experience health complications. Donors have a lower protein count in their blood, putting them at greater risk of infections and liver and kidney disorders. Many regulars suffer from near-permanent fatigue and are borderline anemic. All this for an average of $30 per visit. Rachel described the terrible Catch-22 many of the working poor find themselves in:

 I got turned away twice – once for being too dehydrated and once for being anemic. Being poor created a shitty paradox where I couldn’t eat, and because I couldn’t eat my iron levels weren’t high enough to allow me to donate. That was a week of a pay cut, money I desperately needed for rent and bills and meds.”

A common method of cheating in endurance sports is to inject extra blood into your system before a race, giving you a huge performance boost. But extracting it has the opposite effect, making you sluggish and tired for days. Thus, this debilitating practice is zombifying America’s poor.

Plasma donation

A Maryland plasma center is shown in a promotional image for CSL Plasma, one of the largest corporations dominating the market

The process of giving blood is not a pleasurable one. Currier noted that after constantly donating, “the bruising gets terrible…Sometimes they can’t find the vain ‘n’ **** or they insert it wrong and they have to adjust the needle underneath your skin” she said, claiming that just thinking about it freaks her out, and revealed that her husband had to temporarily stop donating as his bosses thought he was on heroin due to the track marks on his arms.

Watkins agreed. “You could always tell how long someone had been doing the job by that needle,” he recalls. “Once they’d been there a year or so, they’d have stabbed literally thousands of people and could just tap your elbow once and slide the needle into the vein with no problems. New guys would miss the vein, punch through the vein, or try to hunt for it with the needle tip, which would leave terrible bruises.”

There is also little thought for the comfort of the patients. As Watkins explained, the thermostats are always turned down to around 50-60ºF for the plasma’s sake. Once the amber-colored plasma has been extracted, your cooled blood is re-injected in a painful process that feels as if ice is being inserted into the body. “Combined with the already cold air temperatures, this was maddening,” he notes.

Thus, America’s zombie poor are left almost permanently mentally drained like heroin addicts, and with similarly bruised and punctured arms, except they are being paid for the inconvenience. But perhaps the worst thing about the experience, according to those interviewed, is the dehumanization of the process. 

Donors are publicly weighed to make sure they are heavy enough. Obese people are worth more to the bloodthirsty companies as they can safely extract more plasma from them each session (while paying out the same compensation). “They definitely turn you into a product in a very literal sense,” Watkins says; “It’s deeply exploitative and a symptom of just how far gone capitalism is.”

Many centers are enormous, with multiple rows of dozens of machines working in an attempt to appease the insatiable appetite of the vampiric corporation. And there is, according to Watkins, no lack of human “victims” willing to be treated like animals in battery farms, in exchange for a few dollars: “It was an assembly line to extract liquid gold from human mines,” he notes. 

Currier also highlighted the treatment of the staff and the cost-cutting measures of clinics in Maryland she visited would enact:

 Usually the places are hugely understaffed which means they frequently don’t change gloves, the people are overworked, and at the minimum you’re staying there for 2-3 hours which means you have to plan a whole day around this **** only to get 20 bucks in your pocket to make it through the next few days. It’s depressing, disheartening and frankly embarrassing to have to hustle like this. I feel like **** after I donate.”

 

Exploitation reaches new levels

But the exploitation of humans has reached new levels in clinics on the U.S.-Mexico border. Every week, thousands of Mexicans enter the U.S. on temporary visas to sell their blood to for-profit pharmaceutical corporations. The practice is banned on health grounds in Mexico but is completely legal north of the border. According to ProPublica, there are at least 43 blood donation centers along the border that prey primarily on Mexican nationals in a legally ambiguous practice.

According to a Swiss documentary on the subject, there are precious few checks on the cleanliness of the blood these companies accept, with some donors interviewed admitting they were drug addicts. But all is sacrificed in the pursuit of dazzling profits, something donors were well aware of. Rachel from Wisconsin admitted,

 I did it for the money, I think we all do it for the money, but it’s not really something you out and out say because there’s a veneer of “helping the sick” slathered over it. But I caught glimpses of what kind of industry it was on occasion through innocuous questioning. The amount of plasma drawn from one person per donation was worth upwards of $600, I never really got a clear answer on that.

Andrew from Pennsylvania agreed, noting wryly,

 I know my plasma was worth thousands of dollars per donation [to others], because I’ve seen what a hospital in my city charged a hemophiliac for platelets, so the pittance that they pay is ridiculous, but there is only one buyer making offers at the human level. If you’re poor and out of other options, you’ll take $40 however you can get it. Any port in a storm.”

Michael, a social worker from Georgia who sold his blood for extra cash, was deeply scornful of the entire situation. “I’ve known quite a number of people who rely on money made by selling plasma. A lot of times it’s to cover childcare or prescriptions or something along those lines,” he said. “It’s absolutely deplorable to leverage literal blood money from people who have so few options.”

Blood donation sign

A sign encouraging students to sell blood to fund their education. Twitter | @tjulrich

Big pharma is particularly interested in the blood of the young. One billboard campaign from Grifols intentionally targeted working-class students. “Need books? No worries. Donate Plasma” reads the headline. Teenager blood is in high demand in, of all places, Silicon Valley, where anti-aging technologies are the latest trend. One company, Ambrosia, charges $8,000 per treatment to aging tech executives, infusing them with the blood of the young, turning these individuals into bloodsuckers in more ways than one. Despite the fact that there is no clinical evidence that the practice has any beneficial effects, business is booming. One committed customer is PayPal co-founder turned Trump surrogate Peter Thiel, who is reportedly spending vast sums of money on funding anti-aging startups. Thiel claims that we have been conned by “the ideology of the inevitability of the death of every individual” and believes that his own immortality may be just around the corner, a notion that has deeply concerned academics andcommentators alike.

The new and booming blood market is the perfect embodiment of the late capitalist dystopia modern America has become. The dehumanizing process of harvesting the blood of the poor to fund the quixotic immortality dreams of the super-wealthy turns the former into walking, living zombies and the latter into vampires, feasting on the blood of the young; a true American horror story worthy of Stephen King or H.P. Lovecraft. As Rachel from Wisconsin said:

It really is an industry where ‘squeezing blood from stones’ is about as literal as you can get.”

Feature photo | A man is shown selling plasma at an unidentified plasma center. lightpoet | Shutterstock

Alan MacLeod is a MintPress Staff Writer as well as an academic and writer for Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting. His book, Bad News From Venezuela: Twenty Years of Fake News and Misreporting was published in April.


AGelbert

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Being out of a job can do that to a person.
« Reply #172 on: December 04, 2019, 05:22:00 pm »
Literal Vampire Capitalism.


Blood has become big business in the United States and there is no shortage of corporations ready to exploit America’s most vulnerable populations in order to get a piece of the pie.

Yep.

During a brief period in my youth (1970-1972), I knew some people that made some extra money selling their blood. I think they could get as much as $25 for a pint. That was a nice amount of cash back then. I could never do it because my dad was a carrier of Hepatitis (brought back from his Korean War experience before Hepatitis had any different letter versions), which my younger sister and myself both contracted around 1952.

She had a mild case. I was hospitalized for a week where they fed me almost pure sugar everything for the whole time. You would think that a 6 year old kid would enjoy the experience of lots of sweets to eat, but when you have Hepatitis (I guess it was Hepatitis A), you feel dizzy and nauseous most of the time. I had no appetite and I had to be "supervised" by a nurse who made sure I would eat the pudding stuff they wanted me to eat frequently.

The only good part is that, since my week or so in the Hospital was in December, I got a lot of toys for Christmas ;D.

I was told later on that I could never donate (or sell) my blood, so that was that. These people selling their blood had a system of going to different blood banks so they could sell more often (Blood banks didn't allow you to sell blood more often than some period of days or weeks I don't remember right now). The universal blood type people (Type O) were always in demand; A+ blood types like mine, not so much.

As you know, I got fired from the Air Taxi Pilot job I had for trying to organize a union. In 1970, Unemployment Compensation was $92 a month in Puerto Rico. I had to go to a government office twice a month to collect a $46 check. Since I didn't have a bank account, I had to pay some check cashing con artist outside the office a dollar (He would take my check and give me $45).

As a pilot I had been making $550 a month, and had even gotten up to $800 a month during my brief time as Chief Pilot. For a newly married couple, $92 a month was not enough to live on. We had to eat at my wife's parents' house. Within two or three months we had to move out of our rented apartment to my parents' house. 👎

I actually envied those who could sell blood back then. Being out of a job can do that to a person. I know exactly where those poor folks mentioned in the article are coming from. I don't know if you considered selling blood when you lived in that boat you wrote about a long time ago, but I would certainly understand if you did. We all have to do what we can to survive.

« Last Edit: December 04, 2019, 10:01:33 pm by AGelbert »
Hope deferred maketh the heart sick: but when the desire cometh, it is a tree of life. Pr. 13:12

 

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