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Iceland Knows How To Stop Teen Substance Abuse But The Rest Of The World Isn’t Listening

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I think it’s safe to say that most teenagers have tried and/or abused alcohol or illegal drugs, yet teen substance abuse rarely gets the attention it needs. Drugs and alcohol have a more detrimental effect on the underdeveloped brain, particularly since teens lack the ability to adequately assess risk, making them more likely to overindulge in substances. It’s this same lack that explains why people tend to be braver and more open to trying new experiences as teens than as adults. But this courage comes at a cost, as teens cannot adequately assess the risks of the substances they are taking. And schools aren’t doing nearly enough to educate them.

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I remember seeing presentations from a program called DARE, or Drug Abuse Resistance Education, when I was in school. Although we were taught to avoid drugs, the focus was more on avoiding criminal behaviour than protecting our bodies. There wasn’t much focus on long-term effects of drug use. They always maintained that abstinence from drug use was best and that marijuana was the gateway drug, though I believe it’s become pretty obvious that alcohol better serves that description. Alcohol is readily available and easy to obtain, be it from parents’ liquor cabinets or fridges, older siblings, or underage bars.

Teens are faced with tremendous pressure, from their parents, their teachers, and especially their peers — it’s no wonder it is so easy to reach out for that escape, to keep your mind off all of the stresses, but also to just be cool and to fit in.

So How Can We Tackle This Issue?

According to an Icelandic psychologist, Gudberg Jonsson, just twenty years ago Icelandic teens were among the heaviest drinking youths in all of Europe. Apparently you couldn’t even walk downtown in Reykjavik on a Friday night without being bothered by rowdy teenagers getting wasted. He says it felt unsafe. These days, Iceland has various after school classes in facilities that include heated swimming pools and clubs for music, dance, or art.

Iceland now tops the European table for the cleanest living teens. The percentage of 15- and 16-year-old teens who had been drunk in the previous month dropped from 42% in 1998 to 5% in 2016. The percentage of cannabis users has even dropped from 17% to 7%, and those smoking cigarettes every day fell from 23% to 3%.

This country has been able to achieve such a successful turnaround thanks to what might best be described as enforced common sense. “This is the most remarkably intense and profound study of stress in the lives of teenagers that I have ever seen,” says Milkman. “I’m just so impressed how well it’s working.”

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Milkman believes that if this model were adopted in other countries it could benefit the physical as well as psychological well-being of millions of kids worldwide.

How Does This Become a Problem?

“Any college kid could say: why do they start? Well, there’s availability, they’re risk-takers, alienation, maybe some depression,” he says. “But why do they continue? So I got to the question about the threshold for abuse and the lights went on – that’s when I had my version of the ‘aha’ experience: they could be on the threshold for abuse before they even took the drug, because it was their style of coping that they were abusing.”

Milkman helped develop the idea that people were addicted to changes in the brain chemistry, rather than the drug itself. “People can get addicted to drink, cars, money, sex, calories, cocaine – whatever. The idea of behavioural addiction became our trademark,” he says.

This is what spawned another idea: “Why not orchestrate a social movement around natural highs: around people getting high on their own brain chemistry – because it seems obvious to me that people want to change their consciousness – without the deleterious effects of drugs?”

By 1992, Milkman’s team in Denver had been granted $1.2 million from the government to fund Project Self-Discovery, which offered teenagers natural high alternatives to drugs and various crimes.

“We didn’t say to them, you’re coming in for treatment. We said, we’ll teach you anything you want to learn: music, dance, hip hop, art, martial arts.” The idea was that these different classes catering to the interests of many teenagers could get the teens excited and provide alterations in their brain chemistry. It would keep them busy for one, but also it would keep them interested and in the learning phase. Being addicted to dance is obviously a much better alternative than being addicted to drugs or alcohol.

At the same time, teens also received life-skills training, which focused on having more positive thoughts about themselves, their lives, and how they were interacting with others. “The main principle was that drug education doesn’t work because nobody pays attention to it. What is needed are the life skills to act on that information,” Milkman says.

In 1991 Milkman was invited to Iceland to talk about the findings of his work. He then became a consultant to the first residential drug treatment center for teens in Iceland, in a town called Tindar. As Milkman said, “it was designed around giving kids better things to do.” Seems simple enough!

The mayor of Reykjavik was also interested in trying something new, and parents of the Icelandic children and teens felt the same. Using some survey data and insights from research that included some from Milkman, a new national plan called “Youth In Iceland” was gradually rolled out.

Part of this plan involved changing some laws. It became illegal to buy tobacco under the age of 18 and alcohol under the age of 20, and advertising for both were banned. The relationship between parents and the school councils were strengthened and parents were educated on the importance of spending a lot more time with their children. They were encouraged to talk to their children about their lives and know who their friends were. Parents were also encouraged to keep their children home in the evenings.

Iceland even issued a curfew — teens between the ages of 13 and 16 were not allowed to be outside past 10pm in the winter and midnight in the summer. This curfew is still in effect today.

Possibly the most important step to this plan was increasing state funding for organized sport, music, art, dance, and other clubs. This allowed kids more ways to be able to bond with their peers and feel good and have fun, without resorting to drugs and alcohol. Lower income families also received a bonus for each child so that they too, could participate in these activities.

What Was the Outcome?

Between 1997 and 2012, the percentage of kids aged 15 and 16 who reported always spending time with their parents nearly doubled, increasing from 23% to 43%. The percentage of teens who participated in organized sports at least four times a week increased from 23% to 42%. Use of cigarettes, cannabis, and alcohol, on the other hand, all plummeted.

“Although this cannot be shown in the form of a causal relationship – which is a good example of why primary prevention methods are sometimes hard to sell to scientists – the trend is very clear,” says Alfgeir Kristjansson, who worked on the data. “Protective factors have gone up, risk factors down, and substance use has gone down – and more consistently in Iceland than in any other European country.”

Much Love

Source

http://www.abc.net.au/triplej/programs/hack/iceland-teen-substance-abuse/8208214

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16 Months of Hidden Camera Footage Shows What Happens At “Humane” Dairy Farms

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In Brief

  • The Facts:

    Hidden cameras were set u across dairy farms that market themselves as "humane," "free range," and "organic." These labels truly mean nothing when it comes to how the entire dairy industry treats these animals, as the hidden camera footage shows.

  • Reflect On:

    When we've been made to believe something for so long and we are confronted with the idea that it's not true, it can cause cognitive dissonance. In today's day in age, it's best to keep an open mind and question our actions. What are we doing?

The practice of drinking cow’s milk begs the question, for the mass consumption of human beings, can it really be done in any sort of humane or ethical way? It’s hard to think of a way it could be, given the simple fact that for one, a cow has to give birth in order to produce milk for their young. This means that if you are going to provide the masses with the milk of a cow, you’re going to have to forcefully impregnate a cow, which today on most farms is done by artificial insemination. Second of all, the milk needs to be preserved for humans, so the baby is prevented from taking the mothers milk and is usually separated from the mother and taken away to be used for beef. Male calves are of no use to the dairy industry and generally less suitable for beef production. This means that every year around 90,000 male dairy calves in the UK are shot soon after birth and discarded as a by-product. Dairy cows are sent to slaughter after around 4 – 6 years, or when they are too weak to continue producing milk. Their natural lifespan is around 25 years.

From the perspective of the animal, and hopefully the human, it’s heart-breaking, depressing and hard, and the animals are predominately kept in terrible conditions. These animals love, they fear, they think and contemplate. They are emotional just like us, and it’s our lack of ability to see ourselves in all other life that continues this pattern.

One of the latest examples comes from footage captured by hidden camera’s that were set up across dairy farms in the United Kingdom by Dismantle Dairy.

We’ve Been Brainwashed Into Thinking A Cow’s Milk Is Necessary.

Calcium has been the backbone of big food companies that have marketed cow’s milk to human beings. These are big corporations that, through lobbying, have basically dictated government policy when it comes to what’s distributed as ‘food education’ in many different countries. It’s ironic, because calcium is largely available in many plant forms. Furthermore, casein, the protein found in dairy, actually triggers something called metabolic acidosis. This happens when the body produces too much acid and becomes very acidic, which can be caused by multiple things, including the absorption of casein found in animal protein. In order to compensate for this condition, the body actually leeches calcium out of its bones, this helps neutralize the increased acidity.

Animal protein in general has been shown to be harmful to human health, while plant protein shows the opposite. You can read more about that here in this heavily sourced article.

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Perhaps this is why multiple studies show that drinking milk from a cow leads to an increased mortality rate and actually makes bones more prone to fracturing, not less. One example would be this giant study from researchers at Uppsala University in Sweden.

This became known to me through the work of Dr. Colin Campbell, an American biochemist who specializes in the effect of nutrition on long term health. He is the Jacob Gould Schurman Professor Emeritus of Nutritional Biochemistry at Cornell University. Scholars like Campbell are vital to the world, because they are among the few who actually examine and study nutrition and health, something that our modern day medical industry completely ignores. You can watch a video of him explaining, here. Dr. Campbell also discovered that animal protein (casein) can accelerate and “turn on” cancer, while plant based protein has the opposite effect. You can read more about that and which him explain in this article.

If we look at all other animals who don’t consume the milk of another animal or after weaning, it is because they do not have the enzymes to break down the sugar found in milk. We are no different, and this explains why in some ethnic populations around the world, lactose intolerance is present in 90 percent of the population. A staggering 70 percent of the world’s population has some degree of lactose intolerance. Humans actually never had this enzyme, and to digest the sugar in cow’s milk, we had to develop the LTC gene, which was acquired by mutation. This is the lactase gene, which allows us to process lactose as adults. Clearly, we are not doing what is natural and in accordance with our bodies. I first came across this information from Katherine S. Pollard, a PhD at the University of California, San Francisco, in this lecture.

More doctors are waking up, The Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine (PCRM) recently submitted a citizen petition with the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to change labeling on cheese to include a cancer warning.

The petition states:

High-fat dairy products, such as cheese, are associated with an increased risk for breast cancer. Components in dairy such as insulin-like growth factor (IGF-1) and other growth hormones may be among the reasons for the increased risk for cancer.

To ensure that Americans understand the potential significant risks, and resulting long-term costs, of consuming dairy cheese products, the FDA should ensure that the notice above is prominently placed on product packaging and labeling for all dairy cheese products.

The list goes on and on, what’s presented in this article is simply a tidbit with regards to why big milk is going out of business. People are waking up. It’s just not necessary.

Perhaps the biggest indication that people are waking up is the fact that Dean foods, the largest milk producer in the United States has filed for bankruptcy. You can read more about that here.

When it comes to health and cruelty, it’s not just dairy, it’s also meat-eating as well. It’s very in-humane, not all that healthy, and is also destroying our planet.

You can read this article for more information about that: Another Study Suggests That Human Beings Are Not Designed To Eat Meat

Let’s not forget about that animal agriculture is also destroying our planet. There is simply nothing good about dairy, period. It’s truly hard to make an argument in favour of it.

The Takeaway

Why are human beings forced into believing things that aren’t true, and that ruthlessly defend them so much? It’s because our consciousness is used against us, and with regards to various topics, we’ve been made to believe the opposite of truth for the purposes of control, profit, greed and ego. Many may have a hard time accepting that our federal health regulatory agencies, or big corporations for example can be so corrupt, but they are. The positive thing is that many truths are not surfacing, as truth cannot stay hidden for long. We live in a world with beautiful people, and there are many great things about our planet. Compassion and empathy are returning to our planet, and that’s the backbone as to why the dairy industry continues to struggle. Let’s keep the awareness going! How have we been made to believe that it’s ok to treat other lifeforms in the manner that we treat them?

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The US Tried To Detonate A Nuke On The Moon – USAF Colonel Says ‘Someone’ Intervened When We Did

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In Brief

  • The Facts:

    Documents as well as witness testimony from high ranking people with verified backgrounds point to the idea that extraterrestrials have tampered with and disarmed our nuclear weapons on more than one occasion.

  • Reflect On:

    With so much corroborating evidence, it's clear that something is going on which is why the mainstream has started to take this seriously. But why are stories like this never presented by the mainstream, are they trying to control the narrative?

Did the United States try and detonate a nuclear weapon on the Moon? Well, there is a slew of declassified documents that clearly show it was a deep desire for the United States to do so. These documents were heavily classified, and you can be assured that if the United States did, or at least did attempt what they were planning to do, it would remain highly classified and away from public knowledge. A declassified report by the Air Force Nuclear Weapons Center from June 1959 shows just how seriously they considered the plan. It was called Project A119, and it outlines the desire of the government to investigate the capability of weapons in space, as well as gain further insight into the space environment and the detonation of nuclear devices within it, hence why they wanted to detonate a nuke on the Moon.

Again, it’s s just one of multiple documents that show a high level of interest with regards to detonating weapons on the Moon. There are even strange documents with regards to supposed bases on the Moon. To complement the disclosed desire is the testimony of a very interesting person, Colonel Ross Dedrickson. Dedrickson was a real whistleblower, meaning his background can be verified, he actually was who he says he was. In the episode below we present multiple documents that show this, including a list from the Air Force registrar as well as a document from the atomic energy commission. He is one of hundreds of high ranking people to discuss and share his experiences with UFOs and what he knows and extraterrestrials. He is one of many who specially worked close with nuclear weapons.

He was assigned to the US Atomic Energy Commission and served with them from 1950-1958. His job dealt with the administration duties at Nevada test sites, Pacific Nuclear Test Areas west of Hawaii, nuclear weapon manufacturing and quality assurance in Albuquerque, and inspection of nuclear and non-nuclear facilities throughout the country.

In our latest episode of The Collective Evolution Show on CETV, founder Joe Martino and I go in deeper into the discussion of the desire of the United States to test nuclear weapons on the Moon for scientific purposes, measurements and such. We also present the video testimony of Ross Dedrickson, which show his claims that yes, the US did attempt transporting nuclear weapons to the Moon, but extraterrestrials destroyed the weapon before it they got there, according to him. We go deep into the connection between nuclear weapons and UFOs and provide more evidence in the form of documentation and witness testimony from more high ranking military personnel , as well as dive deeper into the discussion about possible extraterrestrials and their interest in our nuclear weapons as it seems that, on more than one occasion, they’ve destroyed and or deactivated these weapons of ours.

The clip below is just the introduction, for the full episode and hundreds of other inspiring shows and interviews, you can start a free 7-day trial on CETV today and watch it. We created this platform in an attempt to stay alive and allow us to continue to do what we do as we are experiencing tremendous amounts of censorship from social media platforms

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Princeton Study: The U.S. Is Not ‘Losing’ Its Democracy, It’s Already Long Gone

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In Brief

  • The Facts:

    A Princeton University study found that the United States operates much more as an Oligarchy than as a Democracy.

  • Reflect On:

    Can the current system be fixed or do we need to walk away from it to get what we really want?

The notion that citizens of the United States don’t actually live in a democracy has been picking up steam for decades, with scars from economic, social and political decay inflicting themselves ever more deeply into our psyches as the years move on.

You would think that, with the rise of science and technology, we would have been able to build a far more prosperous nation. Instead, we have seen a vast reduction in our standard of living, and are being forced to work longer and harder in increasingly menial and unfulfilling jobs across the board. We are ever more being subjected to the control-hungry vicissitudes of mega-corporations that are swallowing up American entrepreneurship and prosperous self-employment.

The notion that we as individuals are failing ourselves as a nation, and somehow have earned the massive and growing national debt as a result of our own poor decisions and ineptitude, is only valid if you still believe that we are living in a democracy, where the majority of individuals directly make policy. If in fact the United States ever fully operated this way, the least we can say is that our democracy is currently broken.

Of course, if you are in the small coterie of economic elites at the top of the pyramid, you don’t feel that anything is broken. In fact, in the back rooms where all the important meetings take place, you likely spend part of the time congratulating each other because things are going exactly according to plan.

Princeton Study

A study by two political scientists at Princeton and Northwestern, Martin Gilens and Benjamin Page, analyzed 1,779 recent policy outcomes found that “economic elites and organized groups representing business interests have substantial independent impacts on U.S. government policy,” while average citizens “have little or no independent influence.”

The research had two parts: First, they measured the amount of political influence various groups have in America. Then, they checked this against some technical definitions of democracy, oligarchy, and other forms of government.

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In our latest episode of The Collective Evolution Show on CETV, Joe Martino and I discuss this study and the broader notion of whether the system itself is simply broken and can be fixed, or if we should start thinking about how we can move away from it altogether. The opening clip is below, and for the full episode and hundreds of other inspiring shows and interviews, you can start a free 7-day trial on CETV today.

The Wealthy Have More Influence

The chart below shows how much political influence different groups have in America today. Not only do the wealthy have the most influence, ordinary voters have basically none.

To have “political influence” in this case means that Congress responds to you by passing the laws and policies you like. Low influence means you’re ignored — Congress passes laws that have no relationship to what you want.

Special interest groups also have sway over public policy. The researchers divided them into two types. “Mass” interest groups, which represent large groups of organized citizens, have a small amount of power. Business groups, like trade associations, have a moderate amount, likely because they can afford to spend more on lobbying and political donations.

None of this means that ordinary people never get what they want from Congress. Sometimes public opinion data matched up with things Congress actually did. However the vast majority were also outcomes favored by the wealthy and business interests. Statistically speaking, the government doesn’t care what 90% of Americans think.

America Is an Oligarchy

The authors defined four possible systems we might have: (1) democracy, (2) oligarchy, or semi-democratic systems dominated by (3) interest groups generally or (4) business groups especially. You can look at the chart below and judge for yourself: America in 2014 matches mostly with the oligarchy model — an oligarchy of wealthy individuals. In fact, the general public has even less influence than it does in a typical oligarchy model.

The problem here isn’t the existence of wealth, or that wealthy Americans have political opinions. It’s that the government is representing only 10% of the American people. Everyone else is living with something less than democracy.

The authors make the following observations: Organized groups regularly lobby and fraternize with public officials; move through revolving doors between public and private employment; provide self-serving information to officials; draft legislation; and spend a great deal of money on election campaigns.

At its heart, this is a problem of corruption – caused by money in our political system. Such corruption is fundamentally opposed to the ideals of our republic because “the public is likely to be a more certain guardian of its own interests than any feasible alternative.”

The Takeaway

While some might argue that introducing new campaign finance laws as well as anti-corruption legislation is the answer, we have to remember that the foxes remain in charge of the hen house, and there is always resistance from lawmakers to introduce, implement, and enforce legislation that will reduce their power and ultimately find them guilty of having obtained their power through corrupt means. More than likely this problem will only get solved when we amass the collective will to walk away from this system, and create one that is more aligned with our values and aspirations.

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