Thursday, December 7, 2023
Wednesday, December 6, 2023
This is just one of a series of mini-lectures identifying problems within the American voting system across America. After years of witnessing that something was wrong with the outcome of elections that I quite couldn't put my finger on, the following explanation accounts for my inquisitiveness that most voters never question. Whether you are a Democrat or a Republican and have the desire for fair and honest elections, I suggest you listen to the complete series of lectures which are available through the Cause For America's website. - N.E.H.
Sunday, December 3, 2023
"I am gratified to see that this is happening far faster than I predicted it would."
I too am gratified that this is happening, for even having lost a few friends over my support for Doctor McCullough I had a strong feeling that the truth would rise to the top among reasonable people. Does this mean my friends that I lost were unreasonable? Yes! And three of them would most likely still be alive. - Norm Hooben
IAOTP Award: "Top Internist and Cardiologist of the Year"
A lot can change in two years. Just before Christmas 2021, Dr. McCullough came over to my house to spend the day discussing the events set forth in our book, The Courage to Face COVID-19: Preventing Hospitalization and Death While Battling the Bio-Pharmaceutical Complex. He arrived in characteristically good spirits, even though he’d just been hit with the most outrageous attack. That morning, Medscape—a popular medical news agency—published a report titled “Physicians of the Year: Best and Worst.” An e-mail blast of the report went out to doctors all over the country. The e- mail’s subject was, “Worst Physicians of 2021: Who disgraced the profession? See who made the list and how many of them you know?”
He went through the report’s slide show of the “Worst of 2021.” The first 8 were a rogues’ gallery of doctors convicted of performing fraudulent, unnecessary surgery, mass murder, making false diagnoses while under the influence of drugs, sexual harassment, and assault. Peter clicked on slide number 9 and saw a photo of himself under the headline, “Baylor Gets Restraining Order Against Covid Vaccine Skeptic Doc.” The report explained that “Baylor was the first institution to cut ties with McCullough, who promoted the use of unproven therapies for COVID-19 and questioned the effectiveness of COVID-19 vaccines.”
Peter laughed this off with his usual Stoicism, but I could tell he’d found this repugnant attack to be painful.
“Nobody with any common sense or decency believes this,” I said, trying to cheer him up. “Medscape is clearly a gutter publication.” Already then, in December 2021, I was confident Peter would ultimately be vindicated. I am gratified to see that this is happening far faster than I predicted it would.
Yesterday the International Association of Top Professionals (IAOTP) in New York City held its annual awards ceremony and gave Peter its Top Internist and Cardiologist of the Year award. Before the ceremony, IAOTP displayed his photograph on the seven-story Nasdaq Tower in Times Square.
I’ve spent forty years studying history, and I am very familiar with how discerning dissidents have been relentlessly persecuted, only later to be vindicated. When the English statesman and poet, John Milton, visited Galileo in the summer of 1633, shortly after Galileo’s trial for heresy, Milton perceived that the astronomer had been unjustly persecuted for simply stating what he’d observed. It was a moving experience that influenced Milton’s famous defense of free speech that he published in a 1644 pamphlet titled Areopagitica. In this speech Milton described censors as “oligarchs” who “bring a famine upon our minds.”
With each passing day, Richard J. Baron and his fellow inquisitors at the American Board of Internal Medicine Committee—which continues its effort to strip Dr. McCullough of his board certifications—increasingly look like the Inquisitors who punished Galileo with house arrest for the last nine years of his life.
The news that Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton suing Pfizer for fraudulent misrepresentation of its COVID-19 vaccine gave me hope that his discovery will explore a probable connection between Pfizer and the ABIM. On the face of it, this suspicion is highly warranted, because the ABIM, Pfizer, and Moderna all share the same powerful PR firm, Weber Shandwick. Indeed, I wouldn’t be surprised if Weber Shandwick was behind the Medscape hit piece in December 2021.
If Dr. Baron has indeed allowed commercial interests to influence the ABIM’s certification and decertification of medical doctors, he should be carefully examined for possibly having civil and perhaps even criminal conflicts of interest.
In the meantime, congratulations to Dr. McCullough for his much deserved award.
Saturday, December 2, 2023
Think Google knows your secrets? Wait until you meet Yodlee. The company knows where you invest your money and how much you owe on your mortgage. It knows your credit card numbers, the amount of your weekly paycheck, and how much you really spend on shoes.
Think Google knows your secrets? Meet Yodlee
NEW YORK (CNNMoney) -- Think Google knows everything about you? Wait until you meet Yodlee.
The company knows where you invest your money and how much you owe on your mortgage. It knows your credit card numbers, the amount of your weekly paycheck, and how much you really spend on shoes.
If you've banked online, you've probably used Yodlee without even knowing it. More than 200 financial institutions, including Citibank and Bank of America use its services, touching nearly 26 million consumers. Your bank probably uses its technology, too, though Yodlee doesn't like to name names.
Yodlee is the proverbial man behind the curtain. So what, exactly, does he do?
When you log into your bank and transfer money between your savings and checking accounts, that's Yodlee providing to the technology to make the transaction happen. Paying a bill online? Yodlee. Signing up for a new account? Yodlee. Analyze how much you spend? Yodlee.
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Then there are its fancier financial-management tools. Yodlee can aggregate all of consumer's financial information and serve it up to a bank or personal finance website, such as Mint.com, allowing you to see your financial health in one snapshot.
For example, on Bank of America's website, customers can see all of their bank accounts in one place. Behind the scenes, Yodlee has scraped your financial data from your various lenders -- student loans, mortgage holder, credit cards, 401(k), checking, savings -- and fed it to Bank of America. (With your log-ins and permissions, of course. But more on that later.) That way, you can analyze spending, budget and set goals across all of your accounts.
"Unlike Facebook and Google, which are very visible, Yodlee has quietly powered the same kind of services across every bank," said Schwark Satyavolu, who co-founded Yodlee and worked there for eight years before moving on to start his own company, an online personal finance startup called BillShrink. "Yodlee is the 800-pound gorilla in the room, but you may not even realize it's there."
It's also the only gorilla in the room. Founded in 1999, the Redwood City, Calif.-based company has a strong head start on its few competitors, such as Geezeo and Strands.
"Yodlee was clearly the most innovative and technologically savvy from a cultural standpoint -- they were all about taking calculated risks," said Devon Kinkead, CEO of Micronotes, a new startup that is using Yodlee's services. "What they've done is build a platform and invited a bunch of sharp, innovative companies and the top banks, so they are extremely well-positioned for growth and have become very hard to compete with."
In fact, some competitors -- like Strands -- are actually turning to Yodlee for their data aggregation services.
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"Even their so-called competitors are their customers, which is a pretty good situation to be in," said Ron Shevlin, a senior analyst specializing in retail banking at Aite Group. "While the market isn't going to get handed to them, given their capabilities and their history, they have a good shot of staying on top."
And for some companies, working with Yodlee has been a life-or-death decision. Wesabe, an early financial-management site, attributes its failure to spurning Yodlee. Wesabe was a competitor to Mint.com, and one chose to work with Yodlee, and one did not.
"Since [Yodlee] had effectively no competitors, we didn't believe we should tie our company to a single-source provider," Wesabe founder Marc Hedlund recently wrote in his blog. "Mint used Yodlee... to automatically get user's data from bank sites and import them into Mint, and as a result had a much easier user experience getting bank data imported."
Mint.com is now considered the leader in the personal finance management space and was recently acquired by Intuit. As part of the deal, however, it is transitioning to Intuit's internal aggregation system, rather than Yodlee's.
One reason Wesabe gave for avoiding Yodlee was its finances, something that had concerned Mint, as well. Particularly, Mint said it was concerned because the company had yet to be acquired.
"That's always been a concern," said Aaron Patzer, vice president of Intuit Personal Finance and founder of Mint.com. "They've been around for 11 years so it's less of a concern now, but since they're a private company it's hard to know how they're doing."
Yodlee, which is backed by investors such as Accel and Warburg Pincus, said it has seen revenue climb more than 30% over the past three years and now has 700 employees.
"Our financials are extraordinarily solid," said Yodlee's chief marketing and strategy officer, Joe Polverari. "In terms of not being acquired, our objective is not to be the classic model of 'pump it up and hype it up' so someone will buy it -- our goal was to be the next real financial services platform."
But Shevlin said he can think of a number of companies that likely have Yodlee on their radar.
"The tech firms that provide all the really boring core applications for managing transactions to banks -- that space has really been consolidating," he said. "Fidelity Information Services, Fiserv, Jack Henry -- any one of them could be good candidates for acquiring Yodlee and creating a single stop shop for banks."
So, with Yodlee having such broad access to consumer information, should you be worried about your privacy?
"There's no reason that anyone should be any more concerned about Yodlee's security than their bank's security, or any other firm they do business with online," Shevlin said.
Yodlee is audited and supervised by the federal government, much like a bank. It is also audited by the financial institutions it works with. And, said Polverari, Yodlee has never had a security breach.