“Coffee and caffeine have been inexorably intertwined in our thinking, but truth is coffee contains a whole lot of other stuff with biological benefits,” said Martin. And most concerns about caffeine’s negative effects on the heart have been dispelled. In June, a meta-analysis of ten years of research went so far as to find an inverse association between habitual, moderate consumption and risk of heart failure. The association peaked at four cups per day, and coffee didn’t stop being beneficial until subjects had increased their daily consumption to beyond ten cups.
Caffeine might also function as a pain reliever. A study from September suggested as much when its authors stumbled across caffeinated coffee as a possible confounding variable in its study of the back, neck, and shoulder pains plaguing office drones: Those who reported drinking coffee before the experiment experienced less intense pain.
There are individual heroes doing great things in this country, and they don’t make it to the news every night. A doctor who storms a panel on healthcare to demand that her colleagues join her in the streets. A woman who stands up in a Congressional hearing on deficit reduction to admonish her legislators: we all know how to end the deficit! End the wars! Tax the rich! A woman who bravely speaks to a crowd about her father, who had literally shot himself to death to avoid burdening his daughter with insurmountable hospital bills. This is the country we have made, and it is up to us to re-make it.
[UPDATE 2012-11-03: This movie is no longer available on Vimeo. Here is a trailer below.]
You may have heard about a little event a couple of weeks ago at the Brooklyn Bridge, which ended up being one of the largest mass arrests in American history. Your faithful blogger was a participant – although not brave enough to risk arrest on the road, I was on the bridge and watched the whole thing go down. Here is a short vid I took:
And here is a much better video, edited for artistic beauty and editorial bias: