Good morning and Happy Friday. Have a great and relaxing weekend. 😌🏖️
“A peacock that rests on his feathers is just another turkey.”
– Dolly Parton
A Closer Look At Hydroxychloroquine
The drug hydroxychloroquine has been heavily politicized in recent days. On Monday, President Trump and his son, Donald Jr., shared a viral video (later deleted by Facebook, Instagram, & YouTube) claiming the drug was an effective treatment for COVID-19. In separate interviews on Wednesday, Dr. Anthony Fauci and former FDA head Scott Gottlieb said the drug is not an effective treatment for COVID-19.
What is hydroxychloroquine? Hydroxychloroquine is a prescription medication that has been used for over 60 years. Initially found in tree bark in the 17th century, the drug was developed to combat malaria in the 1940s.
In the early 1950s, hydroxychloroquine was recognized for its ability to alter immune function in patients with autoimmune disease. In patients with lupus, studies show it can reduce the death rate by 50%.
The medication is also used to treat inflammatory arthritis, decrease pain and swelling, and even potentially reduce the risk of long-term disability.
What do studies show re: COVID 19? A Henry Ford Health System study published earlier this month found that taking hydroxychloroquine alone – and in combination with another drug, azithromycin – led to improved survival rates compared to not receiving hydroxychloroquine.
However, this study was not randomized. In a randomized controlled trial – the optimal method to eliminate bias – patients are randomly assigned to receive a treatment.
In May, a meta-analysis of 24 studies published in the Annals of Internal Medicine found there was “insufficient and often conflicting evidence on the benefits and harms of using hydroxychloroquine or chloroquine to treat COVID-19.”
Three randomized studies published in June (here, here, & here) showed that hydroxychloroquine has no significant benefits for hospitalized patients.
So… what are people saying?
‘America’s Frontline Doctors’ tout hydroxychloroquine: Who are they?
Major virus news: Johnson & Johnson began human safety trials of its vaccine candidate in the U.S. and Belgium after releasing promising initial data from a study involving monkeys.
Appeals Court To Rehear Michael Flynn Case
On Thursday, the full U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Washington, D.C., agreed to rehear a legal challenge regarding the DOJ’s withdrawal of charges against President Trump’s former national security advisor, Michael Flynn. The appeal was initially heard by a three-judge panel, who last month ordered a trial court judge to comply with the DOJ’s motion to toss the case in a 2-1 decision.
More: Flynn pleaded guilty in 2017 to lying to FBI agents about his conversations with a Russian diplomat, but later changed course and for the past year has sought to undo the plea.
Hong Kong authorities have notified 12 pro-democracy candidates that they are disqualified from running in legislative elections scheduled for Sept. 6. In a statement, officials cited the candidates’ positions on legislative issues (such as advocating for democratic reform and objecting to the national security legislation) as proof they would be unable to uphold Hong Kong’s mini-constitution known as Basic Law.
Worth Noting: The funeral of Congressman and civil rights icon John Lewis was held in his hometown of Atlanta, GA, on Thursday, attended by former Presidents Clinton, Bush, & Obama (who gave a eulogy). Former Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain passed away at the age of 74 due to COVID-19.
Also Worth Noting: A cache of documents related to the prior civil litigation of Jeffrey Epstein associate Ghislaine Maxwell was unsealed late Thursday. Read them all here (Warning: sexually explicit content).
The Coronavirus Effect
The Bureau of Economic Analysis released Q2 GDP data on Thursday that showed the U.S. economy fell at an annualized rate of 32.9 percent, the worst in history.
Another 1.4 million+ Americansfiled for unemployment last week, as jobless claims rose slightly for the second straight week.
The Big Four tech companies – Alphabet, Amazon, Apple, & Facebook – reported Q2 earnings Thursday evening, with all four beating analysts expectations. Go deeper.
Coca-Cola on Tuesday announced plans to launch a new hard seltzer under its Topo Chico brand in select Latin America cities later this year. The company said the alcoholic beverage will launch in the U.S. in 2021. As of June 2020, hard seltzer brands White Claw and Truly maintained a combined market share of over 75%.
Reach For The Stars
The FCC approved Amazon’s plans to launch a satellite internet system to compete with SpaceX’s Starlink on Thursday. Amazon’s project, called Kuiper, would see the company launch a constellation of 3,236 low-orbit satellites to provide broadband internet access to previously unsupported areas. After the FCC’s announcement, Amazon said it “would invest more than $10B” into Kuiper.
Worth Noting: ViacomCBS announced a significant expansion to its CBS All Access streaming service, adding more than 3,500 episodes of shows like Avatar: The Last Airbender, Chappelle Show, and a soon-to-be-released SpongeBob SquarePants spinoff.
Out On A Limb
Chris Marckres of West Addison, VT, is a double amputee, but that does not stop him from setting out on daredevil adventures. On Saturday, harnessed to an experienced instructor, the thrill-seeker went skydiving over the region’s Champlain Valley. After Chris and his instructor jumped from the plane at 10,000 feet to begin their descent, one of Chris’s prosthetic legs popped off, falling to the ground and out of sight.
Chris posted a plea on Facebook, asking his neighbors to comb the landscape for his prosthesis. He was soon contacted by a local farmer named Joe Marszalkowski, who found the artificial limb laying in his field among the crops. The leg, which would have been expensive to replace, received only minor scratches, and still had Chris’s green and black New Balance sneaker snuggly attached.
“It Blue My Mind”
Last week, a Red Lobster employee in Cuyahoga Falls, OH, noticed something peculiar about one of the items in a recent seafood shipment to the restaurant. Among the other vibrant red lobsters was a singular blue one. Having dealt with countless crates of the crustaceans, which are delivered live to the eatery, the worker recognized how rare the creature was – only one in every 2 million lobsters has a blue shell.
The employee named the lobster Clawde after the restaurant’s mascot and saved the shellfish from the steamer by donating him to the Akron Zoo. There the liberated lobster, whose unique color is the result of a genetic anomaly, now enjoys a special tank, dubbed “Clawde’s Man Cave.”
Producer Of The Year
When the pandemic hit in March, filmmaker Karin Muller of Ventura, CA, wanted to help protect the more than 300 people experiencing homelessness in her community. Karin – who is also an EMT – recognized that she would need the help of friends and neighbors to make her mission possible.
Over the past four months, Karin has provided food and medical care to the homeless people living on the banks of a nearby river. Throughout her efforts, the altruistic artist has received an outpouring of support from her fellow community members, who have collected supplies and even built handwashing stations for those in need.
How are you managing stress?
Modern Holistic Health focuses on addressing the root causes of physiological illness and mental health imbalances. During this difficult time, we’re working overtime to help calm our clients and the community.
And community is more important than ever. So we want to share some stress-management tips to help you get through this time:
Help others. This simple – yet powerful – act can empower you in times of uncertainty.
Practice Sleep Hygiene. Eight hours of sleep each night ensures your body and brain have the time they need to regenerate, manage stress, and keep your immune system strong.
Exercise daily. Whether it’s taking time out for yoga, dancing, running, or walking – just be consistent and do something every day. Not only will this help manage stress, but it also helps support your immune function, healthy sleep cycles, and your mindset.
🚀 Catch Me If You Can… alongside yesterday’s Mars mission launch, NASA announced an international partnership with Airbus-France to build the first interplanetary cargo ship designed to ‘catch’ rock samples collected by NASA’s next Mars rover.
🏛️ It’s A Small World… the Mini Museum – committed to providing everyday people with opportunities to own priceless scientific & historical artifacts – is now offering the chance to buy a piece of the Manhattan Project.
🤖 Intelligence Quota… in a series of AI-oriented speeches, Chinese President Xi Jinping laid out his strategy for China to achieve world supremacy in the field of artificial intelligence by 2030. Learn more.
How many blue stripes are there on the U.S. flag?
A) 13 B) 6 C) 0 D) 7
(keep scrolling for the answer)
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