Henry Hyde, RIP

Long-time Congressman Henry Hyde passed away last night. He was one of the first national politicians I took a shine to when I began becoming interested in politics as a kid. I haven’t always seen eye to eye with him on all issues (gun control), but I admired him for his strong devotion to the weakest members of our society: the unborn. The Amendment that came to be named after him (the Hyde Amendment obviously) which prohibited the national government from paying for abortions. Who knows how many lives this saved? In terms of lives saved, he has to be one of the great humanitarians of our time. In recognition of his long service to our country, he was recently awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom.

America’s lost a good one.

National Review.com on Henry Hyde

I do have to agree with much of his take on the 2008 Presidential race:

So what does Hyde think about the 2008 presidential field? On John McCain: “He’s interesting and unpredictable but I think he’s electable and correct on social issues.” On Rudy Giuliani: “I like him and he’s electable, but he’s dead wrong on the life issue and that invalidates his candidacy for me.” Mitt Romney: “I don’t know enough about him but he sounds promising.” Then there’s Hyde’s House colleague, Duncan Hunter: “He’s a good man but he’s too protectionist.” Asked about George Pataki, he simply snarls. And what about Barack Obama? He’s not a Republican, but he’s from Hyde’s hometown: “I’ve never seen anyone with such a slim record receive such adulation. He seems like a nice and capable man, but he’s being treated as Pericles revisited or something.”

Eternal rest grant unto him, O Lord, and may his soul and all the souls of the faithful departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace.

Nerdy Pickup Lines

Bloggasm: Was it good for you? サ 50 nerdy pick-up lines

My favorites:

2. I wish I was your derivative so I could lie tangent to your curves.

15. Baby I’ll treat you like my homework — I’ll slam you on the table and do you all night long

22. By looking at you I can tell you’re 36-25-36, which by the way are all perfect squares.

23. It doesn’t take a genius to see how gorgeous you are, but if it did, I would be overqualified. (This one made me laugh out loud.)

Hat Tip: Instapundit.com

Late shift work is linked to cancer

Late shift work is linked to cancer – Yahoo! News

Next month, the International Agency for Research on Cancer, the cancer arm of the World Health Organization, will classify shift work as a “probable” carcinogen.

That will put shift work in the same category as cancer-causing agents like anabolic steroids, ultraviolet radiation, and diesel engine exhaust.

It is a surprising twist for an idea that scientists first described as “wacky,” said Richard Stevens, a cancer epidemiologist and professor at the University of Connecticut Health Center. In 1987, Stevens published a paper suggesting a link between light at night and breast cancer.

Back then, he was trying to figure out why breast cancer incidence suddenly shot up starting in the 1930s in industrialized societies, where nighttime work was considered a hallmark of progress. Most scientists were bewildered by his proposal.

But in recent years, several studies have found that women working at night for many years are indeed more prone to breast cancer, and that animals who have their light-dark schedules switched grow more cancerous tumors and die quicker.

Some research has also shown that men working at night may have a higher rate of prostate cancer.

Because these studies have been done mainly in nurses and airline crews, bigger studies in different populations are needed to confirm or disprove the findings.

Even worse than working the night shift would be to frequently flip between day and night shifts.

“The problem is re-setting your body’s clock,” said Aaron Blair, of the United States’ National Cancer Institute, who chaired IARC’s recent meeting on shift work. “If you worked at night and stayed on it, that would be less disruptive than constantly changing shifts.”

Anyone whose light and dark schedule was frequently disrupted — including frequent long-haul travelers or insomniacs — could theoretically face the same increased cancer risks, Stephens said.

Scientists are now trying to figure out what might be possible to reduce shift workers’ risk of developing cancer. Melatonin can be taken as a supplement, but experts don’t recommend taking it long-term, since that could ruin the body’s ability to produce it naturally.