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New contraception causes severe complications November 5, 2010

Posted by Tantumblogo in disaster, foolishness, General Catholic, scandals, Society.
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All oral contraception carries with it great risks – heart attack, stroke, high blood pressure, blood clots, and growing evidence of heightened risk of breast and cervical cancer.  But a new form of birth control is under fire, and its maker being sued, due to sudden onset of extremely serious health problems:

Thousands are coming forward about Yaz, a popular birth control pill.

Blood clots, gall bladder disease, heart attacks and even strokes — in each case, the women say their decline in health is directly linked to the contraceptive they chose.

Where you see advertisements for Yaz, you’ll see bright colors and smiling faces. But now there’s also an added emphasis on the serious side effects of this contraceptive — results of a $20 million corrective marketing campaign by its manufacturer, Bayer, getting a message out that thousands of women now claim was missing when their pills were prescribed.

Here is what Katie Ketner says she was told by her gynecologist at the age of 15:
“It helped people regulate their menstruation, helped people control their acne and things like that.”

In addition to preventing pregnancy, Yaz (introduced in 2006 as going ‘beyond birth control’) is only approved for treating moderate acne and a disabling mood disorder called PMDD or Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder from which few women suffer.

Katie had never taken any type of birth control before. She said Yaz was the only prescription she was on for the next three years, but by the time she was getting ready to head to college, she was in the midst of a much different type of life-changing event.

“I didn’t go out. I didn’t go see friends. I just laid in bed for the most part, and I was sick all the time. I was vomiting constantly. Eventually, I was vomiting bile,” Ketner said.

For months, doctors tried to figure out what was wrong with what had been a perfectly healthy young woman. It turned out she had gall bladder disease.

“I found out that my gall bladder function was at about 64 percent, and it should be between 98 and 100 percent,” she said.

Ketner stopped taking Yaz. Her gall bladder was removed in October 2009, and she has been fine ever since. 

“I was not predisposed to this condition. I have none of the risk factors. The only thing was Yaz,” she said.

Four weeks and one day after Susan Gallenos began taking Yaz, her health was in jeopardy, too. She suffered a stroke. Surgeons had to remove part of her skull because of swelling to the brain.

It’s the Gardasil disaster all over again.  Don’t ever let your daughter take that poison, by the way.  I recently had a very frustrating experience regarding what I thought was a good doctor, and a drug company trying to rip me off.  I take a medication that is not available in generic yet, and it’s very expensive (about $8 a pill without insurance, about $1.50 with).  Drug companies have a time limit of about 7 years in which to sell the drug they develop as a monopoly, allowing them to set very high prices.  After that, other companies can make the drug and the price usually drops 80-90%.  Well, my drug is coming up on that 7 year date, so the drug company has developed a new delivery vehicle (a dissolving film, instead of a pill), and has encouraged/co-opted doctors to write scripts only for the new film, for which they will have 7 more years of high price monopoly.  My insurance does not cover this new film.  So, instead of paying about $5 for a prescription as a generic, I would have had to pay around $240 (per month).  And this was not so the drug company can recoup their cost of developing the drug – they discovered this drug by accident.  This particular company isn’t even a noted pharmaceutical company, they are known for making household cleansers.  What a joke.  I got the script changed back to a pill after much wailing and gnashing of teeth.

Ah, capitalism…..the worst economic system ever tried, except for every other system.

Vespers in Rome November 5, 2010

Posted by Tantumblogo in Art and Architecture, awesomeness, General Catholic.
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Now THAT’S how it’s done! 

That altar…….soooo beautiful.  So glorious for the service of God.

Thanks to Orbis Catholicus.

CCHD Reform troubling from the outset November 5, 2010

Posted by Tantumblogo in Abortion, foolishness, General Catholic, scandals, Society.
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As I have noted recently, the CCHD leadership at the USCCB has stated they will engage in very thoroughgoing reforms in order to prevent any groups with views and agendas antithetical to Catholic doctrine ever being funded again.   Since this announcement was made with rather wide publicity, however, there have been some concerns regarding the fact that CCHD has still refused to release their 2010 grantee list in time for review prior to the 2010 collection, scheduled to happen Nov. 20-21.   However, given that there were numerous rumors that CCHD faced abolition at recent bishop’s conferences, it seemed like perhaps CCHD was in turmoil and this failure to release the list could just be due to the fact that they were making final determinations on who would receive grants.  In charity, I tried to give them the benefit of the doubt.

That charity is more difficult to maintain, now.   After last night’s post, where I discussed a Distorter article that tried to trumpet some of CCHDs good works, I received a tip from Michael Hitchborn at the American Life League regarding investigations by ALL, and the Reform CCHD Now Coalition, into the very “plan of reform” document recently released by CCHD.  What they found is disturbing, and seems to indicate that for whatever talk there may be of insuring that pro-abort, pro-contraception, pro-gay marriage (etc.) groups never receive funding again, CCHD appears to have difficulty recognizing which groups are involved in this kind of activity that runs counter to Catholic doctrine.  For in the very document describing how they will reform themselves, they highlight a group as a model for future funding that has numerous ties to pro-abort, pro-gay rights, pro-contraception, Marxist agendas:

The Reform CCHD Now (RCN) coalition (www.reformcchdnow.com) has released a report detailing multiple problems with the Coalition of Immokalee Workers (CIW), the first grantee featured in a document intended to outline the review and renewal of the controversial Catholic Campaign for Human Development (CCHD).“The very idea that the CCHD would praise CIW in a document that apologizes for funding pro-abortion, pro-homosexual organizations in the past and promises to make a stronger effort to avoid doing so in the future seriously undermines their credibility,” said Michael Hichborn, lead researcher for RCN member American Life League.  “How is anyone to believe that CCHD can make good on its promises if it can’t even get it right from the beginning?”

RCN’s report outlines in specific detail how CIW participated in the US Social Forum 2010; something the RCN reported on back in June.  The US Social Forum ran a collection of workshops, many of which were devoted to abortion rights, homosexual rights, and Marxist Socialism.  RCN’s report also specifies three of CIW’s coalition and network partnerships that are in and of themselves pro-abortion and pro-homosexual, and whose mission is to encourage cross-issues advocacy of their members.

You can read the more detailed report here

Needless to say, a revelation such as this makes it very difficult to take the professed intent to significantly reform CCHD seriously.  That CCHD would choose to highlight such a group in the very document where they trumpet their plans of reform strains credibility to the breaking point.  It should also be noted that, in 2009, CCHD funded 270 groups like this Coalition of Immokalee Workers.  Of those, the Reform CCHD Now Coalition found 60 some odd groups with problems from a perspective of upholding and promoting Catholic doctrine.  Of those 60 or so, only 5 were de-funded.  The CCHD leadership, including staff at the USCCB, were very combative in their defense of CCHD and cast rather uncharitable aspersions on the motivations of those who have pointed out problems with CCHD grant recipients.  The defunding of the 5 groups was done rather quietly, until it came time to “sell” the fact that CCHD was now reformed.

For the 10 or more bishops who have refused to take the CCHD collection, and the much larger number still considering doing so, this revelation is unlikely to encourage them to follow CCHDs request that the collection be reinstated.  As for Dallas, where the collection is still planned for Nov. 20-21, individual Catholics will have to prayerfully assess CCHDs history and the (apparent) present problems to determine whether they can, in good conscience, make a donation to this group.

As for me, I cannot support this group. That was settled quite some time ago with the revelations of millions of CCHD dollars going to ACORN, but I was open minded to see if this reform would bear out as advertised.  At this point, it does not appear that I can support CCHD for quite some time to come.

Why would you do this? November 5, 2010

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, Ecumenism, General Catholic, silliness, Society.
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Via Fr. Z, why would a church do this?  Would you go to something like this?  

An episcopal church in Pennsylvania has determined that they need a Dr. Seuss themed liturgy.

I guess this is intended to be cutesy, perhaps to stir up additional interest at a church that is losing membership?  

Some examples of the novel prayers:

Celebrant: God be with you.
People: And with you too.
Celebrant: Let us pray.
Celebrant: Almighty God, who gave us fun all this week,
So that we could be at our best, and at our peak;
Give us grace, as we leave this place,
Let the lessons that we have learned not go to waste
All this we ask through your loving name –
Father, Son and Holy Ghost, one in the same.

Is this funny/cute and kind of OK, or is this a trivialization of the sacred?  You can probably tell where I come down on this, and although there are all kinds of questions/problems surrounding Anglican orders and the validity of an Anglican Eucharist, this kind of thing is just kind of dumb.  Like Schoenborn at a balloon Mass or the hideous NCR giant puppet masses, it’s just better to avoid this kind of nonsense.  There are all kinds of reasons that can be given to have a flippant, silly Mass, but they all tend to get down to what the point of emphasis is – is it the people gathered for the Mass, or is it God?  If it’s God, you don’t tend to have balloon/Dr. Seuss/giant puppet Masses.