Sunday, April 01, 2012

"60 Minutes" on April 1, 2012

First, a story, A Hard Landing, on the Kennedy Space Center, done by Scott Pelley. Constellation became Cancellation in Brevard County, Florida. What comes after reaching for the stars, a hard landing. Lou Hanna is interviewed. Shuttle work wasn't just work; it involved tremendous pride. There were 135 shuttle missions between 1981 and 2012. Lou said: it doesn't have to end this way. How can they do that? There is a savings of 3 billion per year; 7,000 workers lost their jobs. Chris Milner launched M&M Landscaping. 7,000 layoffs triggered 7,000 more job losses. Milner works 7am to 1 to 2 am. ("We don't get McDonalds anymore.") Joe Uhrich, and others, planned to transfer to the Constellation from Space Shuttle. Carol Bess is a bankruptcy attorney. These people have no hope; it could get a lot worse, I think. Lucas Maxwell handled fuel for the rockets. The pride that goes into a vehicle like that. Lou Hanna: the shuttle was a matter of national pride. Pelley interviewed the owner of Shuttles; within 45 days of last shuttle lost 75% of business, and the place closed. This is an institution; I don't want to be the one that takes it apart. Seth Rivera reviewed engineering drawings. He's had three interviews in 11 months. Medications run him $800 per month. Atlantis will be on display at Kennedy; tho designed for 100 missions, she flew 33.

Second, "is sugar toxic"? It's the truth, according to some. CNN's Sanjay Gupta on assignment to "60 Minutes." Sugar as a toxin, in part causing heart disease. Robert Lustig is at University of California/San Francisco. Obesity, type II diabetes, hypertension. And 75% is preventable. His lecture on YouTube brought his message to the masses. Table sugar, honey, and processed foods. High fructose corn syrup (HFCS). Sugar and HFCS are both toxic. We used to get fructose with fruit, with the fruit also containing fiber. 130 pounds consumed per person per year. Kimber Stanhope at UCal/Davis, links HFCS with heart disease and stroke. Stanhope shows a calorie is not a calorie; it depends on "where" it is from. For first few days, a diet low in calories. Then, 25% more sugars. Patients that consumed HFCS showed ultimately the HFCS turned into a bad cholesterol (small dense LDL). Sugary drinks may be just as bad as burgers. Lustig even talked about "metabolic syndrome." Food industry replaced fat with sugar. Lewis Cantley of Beth Israel talked about insulin / cancer. Insulin receptors. Cancer cells use glucose to grow. Glucose goes into tumor. Cancers have evolved the ability to hijack. Cantley says: don't eat sugar. Eric Steiss at Oregon Research Institute suggests sugar is addictive (like drugs like cocaine). Gupta took a brain scan while drinking a soda. People who frequently drink soda may be building up a tolerance; more you consume, the less you feel the reward, so you want to consume more. Jim Simon, of sugar industry, was interviewed. Simon says this work singles out sugar for villification. Science is not completely clear here. Dr. Robert Lustig says we need a drastic reduction in sugar; men should consume no more than 150 calories of sugar per day (published in Circulation). Go to 60MinutesOvertime for Sanjay Gupta on where sugars are.

Third, "yes, but is it art?", Morley Safer re-visits a story from 20 years ago. Contemporary art is now a global commodity. Morley went to Miami Beach in December. Art/Basel. 50,000 people turn up. The art market sizzles while the stock market fizzles. The cacaphony of cash. Art as stuff. The kitch, the cute, the clumsy. Willing buyer to a willing seller. One negotiates. 265 dealers are invited. The entry fee $150,000 to present. Is this the biggest scam since Hans Christian Anderson trotted out the The Emperor's Clothes? Blum & Polk. It's theater. You are appealing to the 1%, or 0.0001%. Jennifer Stocklin and Alexandra Monroe. Barbara Gladstone. Contemporary peripatetic artist. Artspeak can seem opaque as spilled alphabet soup. Previous report in 1993 was a sendup. Jeff Koons piece goes for $25 million. Art market compared to S&P stock index. Gerhard Richter.
The collectors are bubble proof. The art is easier to look at than pork bellies, or maybe not.


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