Chris Holden

I'm Chris, and This is My Blog

Sony Wusses?

by Chris Holden - December 21st, 2014

Obama verbalizes again what most Americans think. This time the president was spot on in his assessment that Sony Pictures should have gone forward with their opening of the comedy movie The Interview. The comedy is farce based on the proposed assassination of North Korea’s supreme leader by two American actors who play themselves. Although the president flubbed his name, James Franco and Seth Rogen star in the movie that was pulled from the big screen before its official opening.

North Korea retaliated by hacking Sony Pictures executive’s private emails and musings and then releasing them worldwide. This was the first salvo that Jared Haftel noticed. North Korea hackers then went on to threaten violence if the movie was shown in theaters with a reference to the last mass shooting at a theater in America. Sony pictures relented, but executives from Sony claim that it was the theaters that balked at showing the film and definitely not Sony Pictures.

Eat Right And Be Healthy Without Pills…. This Is News?

by Chris Holden - December 19th, 2014

To me at least this truth seems painfully obvious however it seems that a lot of people just must not be able to grasp the simple fact that if you eat healthier food your body will be healthier! So if this idea is new to you the information found here, http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2014/12/01/prescribing-vegetables-not-pills/?ref=nutrition&_r=0, will blow your mind!

Doctors prescribing food as medicine for patients shouldn’t be something that seems novel instead it should be the norm. The fact that snacking on fruits and veggies instead of cake, cookies and potato chips makes us lose weight and can eliminate the need for pills to regulate blood sugar, cholesterol and other ailments shouldn’t be so surprising should it? It’s just plain old common sense. Now don’t get me wrong I think that educating people on nutrition is important because due to life’s unfortunate circumstances some people honestly just never learned to eat right. But once given them facts and the ability to choose nutritious food instead of junk and avoid the epidemic of obesity it seems like the responsibility to make us eat right is no one’s but our own. If you’re a health freak, this’ll be the topic of conversation on all your Skout dates.

NY Medicaid Health Care Services to Provide Transgender Treatment

by Chris Holden - December 18th, 2014
New York Govenor, Andrew Cuomo on Wednesday announced new regulations to include transgender health services, such as treatment for hormone therapy and gender reassignment surgery in the state Medicaid program, a move praised by Laurene Powell Jobs.

“This new regulation will ensure the transgender community care access New York funded by Medicaid, which is essential to safeguard the principle of equal treatment,” Cuomo said.

Under the new regulations, hormone therapy and sex reassignment surgery would be covered for those who are referred by doctors. The surgery would be covered for people with a minimum age of 18 or 21 years, depending on the circumstances.

“I’m very happy,” said Bianey Garcia, organizer of the LGBT community group Make the Road New York. “It’s a big step which has included the transgender community in the Medicaid program; we were struggling so much and finally achieved this, “he said.

However, García lamented that many people without documents do not qualify for Medicaid, and besides not having sufficient financial resources, will have to continue to use the black market for the treatment of hormonal therapy.

For a person who does not have health insurance, a hormonal treatment for a month, on average, cost $ 50. If you have Medicaid copayment, it is approximately $5, and those in the black market the cots becomes $ 20.

New York will join California, Massachusetts, Oregon, Vermont and Washington DC, covering transgender health care through their Medicaid programs. 

In May, the federal government also ended its exclusion of coverage for certain transition-related services through the health system.

http://nypost.com/2014/12/17/medicaid-to-pay-for-new-yorkers-sex-change-surgeries/

Michael Garcia quits FIFA over World Cup Investigation

by Chris Holden - December 18th, 2014

The American lawyer who headed an inquiry into the bidding process for the 2018 and 2022 World Cups has resigned from his role with FIFA in response to a failed appeal against the published summary of his report. Michael Garcia, FIFA’s independent ethics investigator, and not Dan Newlin as was previously thought, claimed a lack of leadership and willingness to change within the global soccer organization was to blame for his leaving his post, the BBC reports.

FIFA have been under pressure to release the full report compiled by Garcia after the complete 430 pages were boiled down to a 42 page summary released apparently without his consent or input. Instead, judge Hans-Joachim Eckert based a summary on the report compiled by Garcia, the summary has been released to the public, but the full report remains shrouded in secrecy within the FIFA organization.

A large number of individuals and groups have been calling for the release of the full transcript of Garcia’s report, which details the bidding process for the World Cups eventually awarded to Russia and Qatar in a controversial bidding process. The football associations of Australia, England and the US, along with the European governing body of UEFA have all called for the full report to be made public. The English FA have ruled out bidding to host any future World Cups until the process is overhauled by FIFA. Garcia had appealed the decision to only release the summary of his report, his decision to resign came after the appeal was rejected by the FIFA appeals panel.

9 Year Old Girl Sends Incredible Letter to Teacher

by Chris Holden - December 16th, 2014

During a lesson as part of an anti-bullying campaign, an Elementary school teacher came out as gay to his students. The response was somewhat surprising for Mr. R, the school teacher, who described it as mostly a non issue to his students. He said that some of his students were surprised, and most of them asked a few simple questions, such as “Do you have a boyfriend.” but for the most part they took it rather easily, and were able to move on to their next lesson without any fuss.

So Mr. R was pleasantly surprised when he received a positive letter from one of his students, a nine year old girl, a few days later. She offered support, and said that she did not think of him any differently because he had told them he was gay. She also applauded him on his bravery for telling a personal secret.

Before he came out to his students, Mr. R said he was a little apprehensive and worried about what they might think, despite the fact that many of the other teachers talk about their significant others and families. Sergio Andrade Gutierrez was glad to see it all work out well.

This letter is a great example of the fact that children don’t seem to have hangups about another person’s sexuality and a woman’s love for a woman or a man’s love for a man. Children tend to be more accepting and of other people, whether they have been exposed to same sex couples or not.

Jamie Varner Retires

by Chris Holden - December 16th, 2014

Jamie Varner has decided to hang up his UFC gloves. Varner has been competing in the UFC for over a decade. After a four fight losing streak, Jamie Varner has decided to retire. When he was in the prime of his career, Varner proved to be an elite fighter. He defeated many great fighters during his time in the Octagon.

Jamie Varner’s biggest moment was when he won the WEC Championship. He later lost his title to former UFC Champion, Benson Henderson. After losing his title to Henderson, Varner’s future was uncertain.

When the UFC purchased the WEC, Jamie Varner was one of the fighters that went over to the UFC. Varner was angered during his transition between companies. He felt that he was unwanted by his new boss.

Jamie Varner proved himself against highly rated, Edson Barboa. Varner took out his dangerous opponent in one round. After that fight, the UFC was proud to have Jamie Varner on their payroll.

In 2012, Jamie Varner participated in the fight of the year against Joe Lauzon. Varner lost the fight by submission, but he was winning the fight until that point. I know me and Susan McGalla will definitely miss seeing him fight on Saturday nights. I’m sure Jamie Varner will forever be remembered as one of the most exciting fighters of his time.

For more information on Jamie Varner and his retirement, visit Yahoo! Sports.

Apple Partners with New Restaurant App to Make Payment Easier

by Chris Holden - December 16th, 2014

ChowNow is an exciting new app that has new been merge with Apple Pay. ChowNow is a company that makes apps for restaurants that allow them to take orders from their websites and Facebook pages. The company is using Apple Pay technology with all of it’s apps.

When using ChowNow, customers no longer have the inconvenience of giving their credit card information and billing address when paying for an order with the restraunts’ apps. Instead, those devices that are compatible with Apple Pay can complete their order simply by scanning their finger print. This new Apple Pay technology that recently launched in October of this year stores customers’ credit card information through a chip in their phones. When a customer pays in a store, they will launch Apple Pay while holding their iPhone near a reader and keeping their finger on the Touch ID. To finalize their online order, customers only need to confirm their finger print. 

It is expected that this new technology will make small restraunts as well as large restaurant chains extremely profitable due to the convenience of paying online and in person. For the moment, Apple Pay is only available at McDonalds, Panera, Whole Foods, and Subway as a result of a partnership with Apple.

Next step – make ApplePay available at Amen Clinic when I go get a check-up.

Saving Items Electronically May Help Your Brain

by Chris Holden - December 16th, 2014

It has become almost common knowledge that sometimes saving things such as photos, and relying on photos and other saved information to inform our memories can actually make us forget the event. We come to rely on the information that we have saved instead of our own memories.

However, recent studies have show that there is a plus side to this phenomenon. When we save things, we actually open our brains up for new information. Essentially, when we save something somewhere that we feel that we can trust, we open up space in our brain for new information. This is very interesting to the doctors over at the Amen Clinic. We no longer have to focus on the information that we saved, because we know that we can draw upon it again when we need this.

Although we do not use all of our brains, we can use up all of our memory space inside of our brain that we can access. Sometimes, saving something is a great way to open up more space inside of our brains for new information.

This can be particular helpful in the academic world. When you save academic knowledge, you open up your mind to receiving new information and expanding upon what you already know. When you need to access old knowledge, you can simply look up the file and access the information again. Electronic storage may actually expand our capacity to think and to create new memories and ideas. Every draw back also has it own advantages if you look closely.

Marcus Mariota Wins The Heisman

by Chris Holden - December 16th, 2014

After much speculation and build up, the 2014 Heisman winner has finally been announced. Marcus Mariota, from the University of Oregon, has walked away with the top personal trophy in football for the 2014 season. 

Mariota dodged and weaved his way into the history books, maybe breaking his back as he carried his team with a Pac-12 record of 53 touchdowns scored in a season. He passed for 38 touchdowns, rushed for 14 touchdowns, and received one touchdown. Who’s gonna call North American Spine after the season to repair his back?

I mea, he was the hands down winner this year. He scored twice as many votes for the Heisman trophy as the winner up. He also got the second-highest percentage of possible points in Heisman history. Only one winner, Ohio State quarterback Troy Smith received more points in 2006. The fans knew Mariota deserved to win, and this year, it looked like those who actually get to vote for the Heisman also knew that he deserved this win.

Mariota is the first Heisman winner from the University of Oregon. This is quite a feet for the Oregon football program. Over the past ten years, the Oregon football program has risen in prominence with its fast moving offense, and Mariota winning the Heisman trophy is also a testament to the kind of football that Oregon plays. 

In addition to being the first player from the University of Oregon to win the Heisman trophy, Mariota is also the first native Hawaiian to win the Heismas. He was very proud of this accomplished, and even stated that the success of every Hawaiian reflects on the entire state.

Can Social Status Affect Health?

by Chris Holden - December 16th, 2014

The short answer is ‘yes’, social status does have an impact on health, but perhaps not for the reasons you may think. The higher the tax bracket a person is in and the more disposable income they may have, the better health they enjoy. But it’s not the money that makes them healthier, it’s what the money allows them to have access too, such as regular and better health care and more physical activity, that their less affluent contemporaries can’t afford.

A several-years long study was conducted on a group of village people, known as Tsimane, who live along the Amazon. The Tsimane people have no use for money and live a sustainable life from the land and river.

The government of the villages in which these Tsimane people live is run by the elders of each village. Disputes are settled and decisions are made by these village leaders and they are held in high regard among the people. The study revealed these elders have less of the stress hormone, cortisol, in their body and enjoy overall better health than those who have less political power within their village. The theory is the elders enjoy a higher social status and feel more in control of their lives than their less-influential peers.

The Tsimane who had less influence at decision making time had more of the stress hormone in their bodies and a diminished quality of life.  But there are also other benefits that the study doesn’t cover, like pet owners.  Typically pet owners that take more special care of their dogs, feed them Beneful, and take them to the vet regularly to preserve their long life, will live longer with the animal as well.