Ban Plastic Bags and Encourage Gross National Happiness

Sure, why not they’re doing it in New Delhi! In the mid 1980s I was in Switzerland when I went to make a shopping trip to a local grocery store the friends who I was staying with told me to bring a shopping bag, otherwise I’d have to buy one to tote home the groceries. I can’t recall how much they were though I do recall thinking the price of the bags were expensive and thus a deterrent. I never once recalled seeing a plastic bag blowing around in the swirling breezes of the Alps, nor hung-up in a tree limb. As a matter of fact, upon arriving at JFK Airport and driving into NYC I found our country, the USA, quite filthy in comparison to Switzerland. Our streets, yards and air more resembling trash receptacles of our lazy and careless ways.

Perhaps, the economic crisis we’re in the midst of might turn out to be a good thing. We are consuming less, something we clearly NEED to do more of – shift our old ways of thinking and doing. But what would it be like if the US adopted a much different measure of our country’s worth? What if we used a country like Bhutan whose Gross National Happiness is deemed more important than the Gross National Product??? Instead of focusing on gross domestic product (GDP), we modeled Bhutan and gross national happiness (GNH). Continue reading Gross National Happiness and Lessons… Continue reading

Bailing Ship as Obama Takes Office

If this wasn’t so pathetic it ‘might’ be humorous… news of persons in government and big industries ‘bailing ship’ or being asked to resign as the day draws nearer to Obama entering the White House. I know that many of you have known for years that not only has our current administration been incredibly corrupt and that almost EVERY big company/industry has been too. Over the next week, and I’m sure over the next few months, finally… we’ll be seeing many more people being asked to resign or leaving higher positions – THANK GOD!!! Here are just a couple stories of people we will be glad to see go overboard… let’s start doing our Happy Dance!

CDC director resigns effective January 20 (CNN) — Dr. Julie Gerberding, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, will leave her post by noon on January 20, the day President-elect Barack Obama is to be sworn in to office.

Dr. Julie Gerberding, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, has resigned effective January 20.

In an e-mail to the staff at the Department of Health and Human Services, which includes the CDC, outgoing HHS Secretary Michael Leavitt asked Gerberding and several other senior officials from his team to submit their letters of resignation. “She did so, and it was accepted, and it is effective January 20,” CDC spokeswoman Karen Hunter said.

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Harmful Chemicals in Hair Care and Skin Care Products

It makes my head spin just thinking about this topic, the number of synthetic and chemical ingredients that go into hair and skin care products is enormous. The scary part is… many of the chemicals have never been tested for human safety… hmmmm, and we’re slathering this stuff all over our bodies!? Yikes!

I stopped buying commercial skin and hair products twenty years ago. I had to stop… I couldn’t stand the poor results, the high cost, the amount of product needed (making even the cheaper brands FAR more expensive because I needed to use so much of the junk), the smells (YUCK!), and the fact that the ingredients are toxic chemicals. At the same time, I was beginning to get into higher quality essential oils – and am I glad that I did. Bringing them into my life and learning how to use them has been one of the smarter things I’ve done for myself. I cannot tell you how free-ing it is to not be in that consumer rat-trap and a part of the crowd that is locked into that whole system of really awful products, yes that includes the much more expensive brands too (which I once bought also).

I don’t really understand why the majority of the population is still locked into that trap, perhaps it’s due to human habit. I do know this, I am sooo glad that I found my way out of it… with the economy tanking, health care costs rising, the last thing I want in my life are products that WILL make me ill and/or diseased.

For the past 8 years, I’ve been using Young Living Essential Oils shampoo/conditioner. They have three really super quality shampoo’s & conditioners: Lavender, Lemon-Sage, and Rosewood. Yes, the price is high but I use so little – the conditioner, I probably only need to buy 4 bottles a year – that’s a whole lot cheaper than Suave and Pantene (which I refuse to put on my hair due to the nasty chemicals). I believe one 8 oz. bottle of the Young Living shampoo lasts me a little over two months, I think that’s amazing. My hair is soft, shiny and in really nice shape (I never blow dry my hair, that’s way too damaging, instead I wash my hair at night and let it air dry). The YL hair care smell fabulous – they contain the YL therapeutic-grade essential oils and the best part, they don’t have any chemicals that are going to create health problems! Continue reading

Are These Toxic Chemical Ingredients in Your Brand Name Products?

These days more than ever it’s a good idea to become a “Label Reader” – in that teeny-tiny fine print on the label manufacturers do list ‘some’ ingredients (I say ‘some’ because it’s ‘not’ mandatory, by the US government, for companies to list all of the ingredients – and some products don’t list any ingredients, which you can be 100% certain contain some of the worst toxic chemicals).

Between advertising, less than honest companies looking to capitalize on a study done by someone who has a “special interest,” and the fact that new chemicals and slight variatons of old ones comprise a larger than ever percentage of ingredients we can very safely assume that these products are nothing more than a ‘wolf in sheep’s clothing.” So, these companies lead us around like bull’s with rings in our noses and we are expected to follow like ‘good little sheep’ and never question them or resist.  

Here’s a list of ‘some’ of what is commonly found in the products you use daily (I say ‘you’ because I don’t spend my money on products that contain these and other toxins) – look at the labels on the personal care products in your home right now and see what’s in them. It’s better to be a label reader now, than to pay for it dearly later! So get out those reading glasses and have a look-see…
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Buying Things – what happens and where are we headed

Professor of Consumerism

Professor of Consumerism

Our country is facing serious times. On the heels of sky-high fuel prices this summer, a massive financial crisis has sent the economy into a tailspin. As the holiday shopping season kicks into high gear, do consumers ever wonder what goes into producing all of those items that we go into hock for and what happens to their stuff from holidays past?

Consumer mania may have been born from the post World War II era, but economic manipulation has driven consumerism to where it is today and the condition of the environment. From the limited life cycle of personal computers to changes in footwear fashion, products are either designed to be regularly replaced or to convince consumers that their stuff needs to be upgraded. This notion of planned and perceived obsolescence drives the machine of American consumerism year round. 

Watch this inspiring 20 minute video about the things we take for granted and solutions that can make a difference…

How we can invent and invest our way out of the pollution-based grey economy and into the healthy new green economy?

If you liked The Story of Stuff and the messages it conveys, download it for free or purchase the DVD and share it with your community by showing the film at a house party, or classroom, or church group, or neighborhood association or any other location. Here is everything you need to organize a successful event

In the book, The Green Collar Economy, acclaimed activist and political advisor Van Jones delivers a real solution that both rescues our economy and saves the environment. A New York Times best-seller The Green Collar Economy is not a dire warning but rather a substantive and viable plan for solving the biggest issues facing the country–the failing economy and our devastated environment. From a distance, it appears that these two problems are separate, but when we look closer, the connection becomes unmistakable.

Stacy Malkan’s groundbreaking expose’ about toxic chemicals in personal care products has won a top award from the independent publishing industry. Not Just a Pretty Face: The Ugly Side of the Beauty Industry (New Society Publishers 2007) received a 2008 Silver IPPY from the Independent Publisher Book Awards in the category of Health/Medicine/Nutrition. The contest honors the best independently published books of the year in 64 categories.

It is for all the reasons above why I’ve taken the time to learn about Young Living therapeutic-grade essential oils and create this blog… so that I might help others make a difference in their lives and in the world. If you’re interested in some of the ways I use essential oils in place of common over-the-counter medicines and toxic household cleaners visit my page on Making the Switch.

Flame Retardants are Poisoning Us and Our Kids

Article submitted by Evelyn Vincent, Young Living Essential Oil Distributor

The Environmental Working Group (EWG) has found a fire retardant chemical used in electronics, toys, and furniture in children’s blood at triple the levels found in their mothers. The EWG is a Washington, D.C. based nonprofit group that studies environmental toxins.

It conducted a pilot study of 20 families, taking blood samples from mothers and young children up to the age of four. They were looking for PBDEs or polybrominated diphenyl ethers, a hormone-disrupting pollutant that builds up in the body. Because children are generally more at risk from exposure to harmful chemicals, their organs are still developing and lower concentrations of toxic chemicals can have a disproportionate effect on them, the findings are cause for some concern.

PBDE stands for polybrominated diphenyl ethers, a class of related chemicals each with slightly different uses and potential health risks. Europe and some U.S. states have banned the use of some PBDEs, which are in such wide use in part because other flame retardants have been banned because of their toxicity. Promoters of PBDEs point out that reducing fire risk from consumer products, like furniture and electronics, has saved many lives, and the risks of toxic exposure or hormonal disruption is small or unproven. Continue reading

What do Grain Milling, Cotton Shirts and Burning Coal have in Common? Arsenic!

by Curt Siters, Young Living Distributor

In August of 2008 the American Medical Association, in its flagship publication The Journal of American Medicine, published a preliminary research on a possible connection between Arsenic and not “old Lace” but Diabetes. Specifically Type 2 Diabetes. I read about this in print media just today and did some research. The results were mostly (at least the first few pages of search results) blogs regurgitating and commenting on it or news stories citing either the AP or Reuters. Kind of disheartening. So I tightened my search criteria and found good results after eliminating the chaff.

I got the source – JAMA. Which is what I wanted. Then I decided to go even further and eliminate AP, Reuters, CNN, anything related to the U.S., and came up with some interesting research into Arsenic and how it impacts health. Worldwide research has linked Arsenic to hypo/hyperpigmentation, hyperkeratosis, and skin cancers, bladder cancer, ischemic heart disease, hypertension and diabetes mellitus (a Taiwanese study) and much more. In France, the research is well underway to determine how Arsenic causes diabetes as shown in this research from 2004. Continue reading