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Thursday, January 30, 1997

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  • Breast Cancer: Poisons, Profits, and Prevention

    Dr. Ernest J. Sternglass and Liane Clorfene-Casten explore the causes of breast cancer that go largely ignored by mainstream medicine, which instead focuses on treatment instead of prevention. Excerpt played from speech by Dr. Ernest J. Sternglass – professor Emeritus of radiology at University of Pittsburgh medical school – on nuclear fallout and nuclear radiation, and their effects on women. Sternglass says that radiation has been known to cause all kinds of cancer since shortly after the discovery of x-rays in 1895 when many of the pioneers of radiation died from cancer, and traces the development and acceptance of the link between exposure to x-rays and cancer into and beyond the nuclear age. Liane Clorfene-Casten, investigative journalist and author of Breast Cancer; Poisons, Profits, and Prevention, is interviewed on the link between dioxins like organochlorines and cancer, and medical and industry cover-ups by what she refers to as "the cancer establishment". Clorfene-Caston blames 70% of all breast cancers on pollutants in the environment, and cites examples like the fact that in 1994 alone, industry released more than 1.1 billion pounds of toxins linked to human reproductive disorders, while only 1% of the 70 000 different synthetic chemicals and metals are monitored.

  • Microcredit: Does it Help The Poor? (From Bangladesh to the United States

    Journalist David Bornstein, author of The Price of a Dream; The Story of the Grameen Bank, and Geena Neff, author of Microcredit, Microresults in the Left Business Observer, debate the merits of microcredit. Bornstein says microcredit – the lending of small amounts of money to poor women in the third world – is a response to the fact that large infrastructure aid projects fail to get money into the hands of very poor people, particularly women. Bornstein thinks microcredit has led to the quality of life being improved for many people living in poverty throughout the world, and says that says it is not imposed on them, but is responding to their needs. Geena Neff disagrees, citing studies showing that many poor women are losing control of their loans and that women often have higher repayment rates, so issues of who has control and power are not being addressed by microcredit. She questions the Grameen bank’s involvement with microcredit and the fact that 90% of their employees are male, and also cautions that the recent Microcredit Summit was sponsored by Monsanto and Citicorp.