Sleep Better by Turning Off Electronic Accessories

By: Neil McLaughlin

(NaturalNews) Nowadays most people sleep in a room that is lit up like a Christmas tree. The alarm clock shows the time in bright red. The cell phone is charging. The Computer is still running. The DVD clock is flickering 12:00. The answering machine has more lights than R2D2. Are people so afraid of the dark that they prefer this many night lights? Each and every energy source takes a small toll on the sleep pattern of people nearby, bombarding them with various forms of radiation as they sleep. The following are some devices to be wary of:

* Alarm Clock

Red LEDs interrupt sleep more than other types. For this reason it is best to not have any electric alarm clock near the bed. Try to find an old-fashioned one that requires winding and has actual bells on top, or move it to the next room.

* Cell Phone Charger

While cell phones can be turned off at night, the charger often has some light indicating power and perhaps another showing the battery level. Some beep when they are done charging. It is best to charge phones in the kitchen or someplace other than the bedroom. Note that most cell phones are always on and one must actually remove the battery to be sure they are not transmitting.

* Cordless Phone and Base

While cell phones have had a lot of bad press regarding their causing brain tumors, few have noted that cordless phones can be equally dangerous. The main culprit is not actually the handset but the base itself, which acts like a mini cell phone tower, blasting radiation 24/7. The worst part is, the base is often kept right next to the bed. It should be moved to another room, or better yet replaced with an old-fashioned corded phone.

* Computer Fan

Computer fans start out quiet on new computers but become increasingly loud, eventually failing and causing the computer to overheat, whereby the computer will perform even more slow and erratic than if you installed Vista. If you can hear the fan, it needs to be cleaned. Important: power down and disconnect all power cords before opening the box. Actually unplug the three pronged cords in the back. Open the computer (press tabs may be on the top and bottom). The fan likely inside has a cowl cover that opens on a hinge to expose the fan. The fan has a power plug and plugs into the circuit board. Unplug it, and remove the fan. Use a wire brush to clean it from both sides. Vacuum out the cowl cover or use pressurized gas. Brush the back of the computer, especially the vents. Avoid breathing the dust.

* Speakers, Amplifier

Speakers normally have a separate power supply and light, and they can make a loud humming noise on their own, particularly if the volume is up high. These should be turned off along with the computer. If you can, plug all computer related devices into one surge protector and turn the whole strip off at night.

* TV, Radio, DVD, Video Game Console, iPod, Laptop, PDA, Blackberry

You may be used to falling asleep with certain devices on. DVD players often play automatically, looping on the menu screen while playing the maddening 12 second theatrical sound byte over and over. It is best to power down any devices in your room.

* AC Maintenance

If the compressor or condenser in your AC starts going, it will be quite loud at times, making a loud noise for long durations. Sometimes a tune-up or gas charge will quiet the unit, otherwise certain parts should be replaced. Apartment complexes are notorious for having loud AC units outside but they normally fix them if you report the bad unit.

* Local Power Lines

It is best to avoid living close to main power lines and/or power substations. If you fall within their shadow or are within earshot you are too close.

If humans could see the electromagnetic sources around them they would know they are being bombarded with various types of radiation constantly. Radio waves, cell phone towers, WiFi cable, power lines, transformers, and electronic devices in our homes all contribute small and large amounts of energy constantly. This has only been the case for the last 50-100 years.

Most of these devices are frivolous as humans can survive in the wilderness with only about 7 items including sipping straw, digging stick, cutting blade, water canteen, fishing line, throwing spear and flint stone. People assume that modern devices make their lives so much easier, but any advantage they gain toward higher productivity only translates to higher corporate profits, and they trade away intuitive connections with nature that are essential for survival. Meanwhile work hours continue to increase while hunter gatherers only worked a three or four day week, spending the rest of their time socializing.

While people tend to get used to being surrounded by electronics, things certainly feel a lot quieter when the power in the neighborhood is out. Turning off devices can’t hurt, and one can certainly sleep better knowing that their electric bill will be lower next month.

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About the author
Neil McLaughlin is a computer scientist specializing in 3d graphics and simulation. He can be reached at naturalnews461 (at) yahoo (dot) com.

Portal to Maya Underworld Found in Mexico?

Alexis Okeowo in México City for National Geographic News

A labyrinth filled with stone temples and pyramids in 14 caves—some underwater—have been uncovered on Mexico’s Yucatán Peninsula, archaeologists announced last week.

The discovery has experts wondering whether Maya legend inspired the construction of the underground complex—or vice versa.

According to Maya myth, the souls of the dead had to follow a dog with night vision on a horrific and watery path and endure myriad challenges before they could rest in the afterlife.

In one of the recently found caves, researchers discovered a nearly 300-foot (90-meter) concrete road that ends at a column standing in front of a body of water.

“We have this pattern now of finding temples close to the water—or under the water, in this most recent case,” said Guillermo de Anda, lead investigator at the research sites.

“These were probably made as part of a very elaborate ritual,” de Anda said. “Everything is related to death, life, and human sacrifice.”

Stretching south from southern Mexico, through Guatemala, and into northern Belize, the Maya culture had its heyday from about A.D. 250 to 900, when the civilization mysteriously collapsed.

(Read about the watery graves of the Maya in National Geographic magazine.)

Myth and Reality

Archaeologists excavating the temples and pyramids in the village of Tahtzibichen, in Mérida, the capital of Yucatán state, said the oldest item they found was a 1,900-year-old vessel. Other uncovered earthenware and sculptures dated to A.D. 750 to 850.

“There are stones, huge columns, and sculptures of priests in the caves,” said de Anda, whose team has been working on the Yucatán Peninsula for six months.

“There are also human remains and ceramics,” he said.

Researchers said the ancient legend—described in part in the sacred book Popul Vuh—tells of a tortuous journey through oozing blood, bats, and spiders, that souls had to make in order to reach Xibalba, the underworld.

“Caves are natural portals to other realms, which could have inspired the Mayan myth. They are related to darkness, to fright, and to monsters,” de Anda said, adding that this does not contradict the theory that the myth inspired the temples.

William Saturno, a Maya expert at Boston University, believes the maze of temples was built after the story.

“I’m sure the myths came first, and the caves reaffirmed the broad time-and-space myths of the Mayans,” he said.

Underworld Entrances

Saturno said the discovery of the temples underwater indicates the significant effort the Maya put into creating these portals.

In addition to plunging deep into the forest to reach the cave openings, Maya builders would have had to hold their breath and dive underwater to build some of the shrines and pyramids.

Other Maya underworld entrances have been discovered in jungles and aboveground caves in northern Guatemala Belize.

“They believed in a reality with many layers,” Saturno said of the Maya. “The portal between life and where the dead go was important to them.”

RFID In Your Clothing And Shoes

By Katherine Albrecht


You’d better look at your shoes, socks and underwear!

Protesters will gather today in Manhattan to greet attendees of the third annual “RFID in Fashion” conference, an event organized to promote the use of RFID in clothing and footwear. Dr. Katherine Albrecht, the Harvard-educated privacy campaigner featured in the film “Freedom to Fascism” and co-author of the bestselling book “Spychips,” will be on-hand to speak to attendees arriving for the opening keynote this afternoon at NYC’s Fashion Institute of Technology.

The conference features two days of speeches and events to advance apparel-industry uses for controversial Radio Frequency Identification or RFID technology. Past attendees include New Balance Athletic Shoes, Reebok, Levi Strauss, American Apparel, Liz Claiborne, and Jockey, along with retail outlets The Limited, Timberland, and Dillard’s.

Albrecht planned today’s protest after discovering the conference would promote the use of RFID in individual clothing items. Known as “item-level tagging,” the practice of placing RFID tags on consumer items (rather than on crates or pallets in a warehouse) has been widely condemned by privacy and security experts.

Experts caution that such tags pose huge privacy and safety risks to the public. Used to track inventory in warehouses, RFID tags can easily be used to track people as well a fact that can be exploited by marketers, government agencies, and criminals. IBM, for example, has patented RFID “person tracking units” for placement in walls and floors to allow marketers and government agents to secretly monitor people’s movements. They suggest using the devices in public spaces like shopping malls, theaters, elevators, and restrooms once RFID is implemented at the item level.

“Consumers shouldn’t have to worry about tracking devices being sewn into the seams of their clothing or pressed into the soles of their shoes,” said Albrecht. “We are putting apparel and RFID companies on notice that consumers will protest any item-level use of RFID on apparel.”

In 2003, Albrecht’s consumer group CASPIAN led a successful boycott against Italian clothing manufacturer Benetton. The resulting worldwide opposition forced the company to cancel plans to sew millions of RFID tags into women’s garments.

“Consumer awareness and opposition to RFID has grown exponentially since 2003,” Albrecht said. “Any U.S. company foolish enough to use RFID on apparel will face stiff repercussions.”

The RFID in Fashion 2008 conference website can be found at:



CASPIAN (Consumers Against Supermarket Privacy Invasion and Numbering) is a grass-roots consumer group fighting retail surveillance schemes since 1999 and irresponsible RFID use since 2002. With thousands of members in all 50 U.S. states and over 30 countries worldwide, CASPIAN seeks to educate consumers about marketing strategies that invade their privacy and encourage privacy-conscious shopping habits across the retail spectrum


Human Chipping: RFID Tagging: Shopper Cards: Boycott Gillette: Boycott Tesco: Boycott Benetton (2003):



Dr. Katherine Albrecht is widely recognized as one of the world’s leading experts on consumer privacy, retail issues, and RFID, or “Radio Identification Technology.” She holds a Doctorate in Education from Harvard University, was appointed by NH Governor John Lynch to serve on that state’s two-year RFID study commission, and is the director of CASPIAN, a 20,000 member consumer privacy organization she founded in 1999.

Since 2003, Katherine has led the fight against unethical RFID use in products and in people. She regularly testifies before lawmakers around the globe and has given over two thousand television, radio and print interviews to news outlets like CNN, NPR, Good Morning America, Business Week and the London Times, to name just a few. Executive Technology Magazine calls Katherine “perhaps the country’s single most vocal privacy advocate” and Wired magazine calls her the “Erin Brockovich” of RFID.”



Dr. Katherine Albrecht Founder and Director, CASPIAN Consumer Privacy (877) 287-5854,



CASPIAN (Consumers Against Supermarket Privacy Invasion and Numbering) is a grass-roots consumer group fighting retail surveillance schemes since 1999 and irresponsible RFID use since 2002. With thousands of members in all 50 U.S. states and over 30 countries worldwide, CASPIAN seeks to educate consumers about marketing strategies that invade their privacy and encourage privacy-conscious shopping habits across the retail spectrum.