The sun's ultraviolet (UV) rays have a similar effect on our bodies as heroin, scientists claim, and by topping up our tan we're acting in much the same way as an addict satisfying a yearning for heroin or morphine. Experts knew that sun-seeking behaviour could fit the clinical criteria for a substance-related disorder, but what underlay this apparent "addiction" had been unknown until now. Lead scientist Dr David Fisher, from Harvard Medical School in the US, and his team investigated links between UV exposure and the opioid receptor pathway in "naked" laboratory mice. After a week in the artificial sunshine, endorphin levels in the blood of shaved animals increased. At the end of six weeks, the mice were given an opioid-blocking drug, naloxone. Abruptly denied the drug-like effects of UV, they suffered an array of withdrawal symptoms, including shaking, tremors and teeth chattering. "It's surprising that we're genetically programmed to become addicted to something as dangerous as UV radiation, which is probably the most common carcinogen in the world," said Dr Fisher, whose findings appear in the journal Cell.Lesus Christ. What an absolute idiot. Surprising that we're designed to seek the FORCE THAT GIVES US LIFE? Surprising that we want to ACQUIRE ENERGY? I can't begin to figure out the alien non-thought processes inside the alien cranial cavity of this well-funded and well-respected alien weirdo. If this is "science", we need to eliminate it ENTIRELY. All of it. Every single bit.
Polistra was named after the original townsite of Manhattan (the one in Kansas). When I was growing up in Manhattan, I spent a lot of time exploring by foot, bike, and car. I discovered the ruins of an old mill along Wildcat Creek, and decided (inaccurately) that it was the remains of the original site of Polistra. Accurate or not, I've always liked the name, with its echoes of Poland (an under-appreciated friend of freedom) and stars. ==== The title icon is explained here. ==== Switchover: This 2007 entry marks a sharp change in worldview from neocon to pure populist. ===== The long illustrated story of Polistra's Dream is a time-travel fable, attempting to answer the dangerous revision of New Deal history propagated by Amity Shlaes. The Dream has 8 episodes, linked in a chain from the first. This entry explains the Shlaes connection.