Posts Tagged ‘law’

Beware GMOs; They Set You Up For Cancer, Other Diseases

by Bob Livingston on Tuesday, July 29th, 2014

This is article 69 of 69 in the topic Food/Natural Remedies
Beware GMOs; They Set You Up For Cancer, Other Diseases

THINKSTOCK

If you were to write a movie about evil scientists plotting to insert secret ingredients into the food supply in order to make humans sick, you’d have a hard time coming up with something more inventive and potentially more dangerous than genetically modified (GMO) food.

Even though GMO ingredients are not listed on food labels, they have already infiltrated our dinner plates. And this technological change to our food has the potential for sabotaging the world’s food supply. Sadly, most Americans don’t even realize they eat GMO food at just about every meal. In particular, the soy and corn ingredients of our favorite dishes almost always contain GMO ingredients.

U.S. farmers and farmers around the world plant vast amounts of these laboratory-created crops. In particular, soy, corn and cotton (processed food frequently has cottonseed oil added to it) have been genetically engineered to contain toxic pesticides and to withstand massive amounts of herbicides that are applied to farm fields. This allows GMO crops to survive and be harvested while weeds in the fields are supposed to wither and die.

Of course, other beneficial living things like honeybees, other pollinators and a wide collection of wildlife also perish from massive pesticide exposure. And the pesticides often persist long enough to poison our water and air.

According to estimates by the International Service for the Acquisition of Agri-biotech Applications, since GMO crops were introduced in the 1990s, 1 billion acres worldwide have been planted with these plants. That’s an area larger than the continental United States.

GMO proponents argue that the technology is safe, but recent discoveries about what happens in the genetic material of altered organisms are not reassuring. Understand that we are not talking about hybridization, which is the process of cross breeding similar plants in order to create a superior variety or achieve a specific characteristic. Creating GMO plants is much different and can involve replacing, swapping or splicing genes or inserting viruses into the genes themselves in order to alter their very nature.

In theory, altering an organism’s genetic material seems simple and precise. The process is supposed to consist of extracting a desirable gene from one plant or animal and inserting it into another.

Suppose, for example, one wants to create tomatoes that can withstand cold weather. In theory, genes that allow a frost-resistant plant to survive freezing temperatures are extracted and put it into the tomato plant. When seeds of the new tomato plant grow, the presence of this genetic material stimulates activity in the new plants that keep them alive as the temperature drops.

In practice, however, this leads to unforeseen consequences. Only recently have scientists discovered that the genes scientists insert into plants are often contaminated with unintended material, including viruses.

The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) has discovered that when lab scientists altered genes in GMO food, they were also feeding in parts of a virus gene. No one had ever noticed that before.

This virus gene, however, is now in the food we eat. Is it safe? Will it lead to some type of new illness among the millions of people who consume it? Experts can’t say.

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My newest piece in the Philadelphia Inquirer: "Armed doctor saved lives"

by John Lott on Tuesday, July 29th, 2014

This is article 546 of 547 in the topic Gun Rights
My newest piece in the Philadelphia Inquirer starts this way:

On Thursday afternoon, Dr. Lee Silverman undoubtedly saved many lives. Using a handgun, the Delaware County psychiatrist stopped what both police and the district attorney described as a certain mass killing at Mercy Fitzgerald Hospital.

The attacker, Richard Plotts, is a convicted felon, which bans him from legally owning a gun. But Pennsylvania’s universal background check law did not stop him. Neither did the hospital’s signs banning guns.

The proposed federal law on expanded background checks that President Obama continually pushes is similar to Pennsylvania’s and would not have stopped Plotts either. Indeed, it is hard to see how it would have stopped any of the other mass shootings during his presidency.

At Mercy Fitzgerald, caseworker Theresa Hunt was killed when Plotts opened fire during a regularly scheduled appointment with Dr. Lee Silverman. Fortunately, the doctor had his own gun and returned fire, hitting Plotts three times and critically wounding him.

After firing all the bullets in his gun, Plotts still had 39 bullets on him, bullets that he could have used to shoot many other people. Silverman’s three hits, however, made it possible for two other hospital employees to tackle the wounded attacker and secure his .32-caliber revolver. Plotts has since been charged with murder and attempted murder.

Yeadon Police Chief Donald Molineux was clear: “Without a doubt, I believe the doctor saved lives. … Without that firearm, this guy [Plotts] could have went out in the hallway and just walked down the offices until he ran out of ammunition.” . . .

The rest of the piece is available here.

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Obama correctly insisted for years that he had absolutely no legal authority to slow deportations on a broad scale, well forgot about that

by John Lott on Friday, July 25th, 2014

This is article 451 of 452 in the topic Immigration
Remember Obama’s repeated public claims that he had no legal authority to ignore immigration law and purposely slow deportations?  Presumably he repeatedly made that promise because he didn’t want to scare voters that he might do something radical.  Well, now that he no longer faces voters again, that repeated point is being ignored.  From Politico:

Obama’s pledge to use his executive powers by the end of the summer marked both a dramatic reversal in rhetoric and a major strategic shift on immigration. The president is no longer emphasizing his own powerlessness but rather his determination “to fix as much of our immigration system as I can on my own, without Congress.”

The administration is examining how far it can go, legally and politically, to protect millions of undocumented immigrants from deportation. Despite the flow of young Central American children across the southwestern border, Obama remains committed to taking significant action, according to senior advisers and advocates who have attended recent meetings with White House officials.

In other words, Obama has signaled that he intends to do exactly what he’s long said he’s unable to do. . . .

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The ‘it’s the law’ crowd blames ACA ‘typo’ for big blow to Obamacare

by Doug Powers on Wednesday, July 23rd, 2014

This is article 686 of 686 in the topic Healthcare

First, three flashbacks just to set the mood:

John Conyers: “I love these members that get up and say, Read the bill! Well, what good is reading the bill if it’s a thousand pages and you don’t have two days and two lawyers to find out what it means after you’ve read the bill?”

Nancy Pelosi:

The White House rubbing it in last year:

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It’s. The. Law. ,

***
With those in mind, Obamacare was dealt a bit of a blow today:

In a potentially crippling blow to Obamacare, a top federal appeals court Tuesday said that billions of dollars worth of government subsidies that helped nearly 5 million people buy insurance on HealthCare.gov are illegal.

A judicial panel in a 2-1 ruling said such subsidies can be granted only to those people who bought insurance in an Obamacare exchange run by an individual state or the District of Columbia — not on the federally run exchange HealthCare.gov.
[...]
The Obama Administration is certain to seek a reversal of the decision by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, which does not immediately have the effect of law.

Many Dems are complaining that Obamacare has been “defunded” just because of a “glorified typo” while blaming conservative judicial activism for refusing to recognize the law’s “intent” (“intent” defined as “not necessarily the way we wrote it”).

A glance at the explanation for the ruling disintegrates the “judicial activism” charge (screen cap via Hot Air):

null

Judging a law based on how it’s actually written and not attempting to ascertain the “intent” of its authors? How quaint!

Charles C. W. Cooke         @charlescwcooke

Halbig is a victory for the idea that we write down our laws for a good reason and that words have real and concrete meanings.

And we can have lots of fun picking on the Dems for not reading or properly proofing the bill, but the language was in fact that way for a reason.

The game-playing simply came back to bite them, and, during the appeals process, the Obama administration, Pelosi, Reid and others will blame Republicans and “judicial activism,” and the MSM will dutifully run with that ball.

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The Nexus of Illegal Drugs and Illegal Immigration

by Alan Caruba on Tuesday, July 22nd, 2014

This is article 82 of 82 in the topic Drug War

By Alan Caruba

All manner of reasons are being offered to explain the influx of thousands of illegal aliens, not the least of which is President Obama’s open invitation to Latin Americans to come here with the promise of becoming citizens at some point. By overloading the southern border, this has opened the doors to criminals and potential terrorists as well.

In March, the Huffington Post took note of the other far lesser known or discussed reason our southern border is so porous. “Americans Spent About A Trillion Dollars on Illegal Drugs in the Last Decade.”  With that kind of money awaiting them, you can be sure that the drug cartels are going to make every effort to satisfy the market.

The article was about a Rand Corporation report by its Drug Policy Research Center as requested by the Office of National Drug Control Policy that tracked total expenditures, consumption, and number of users of marijuana, cocaine (including crack), heroin and methamphetamine. The decade tracked was 2000 to 2010.

Despite federal spending between $40 and $50 billion to fight the war on drugs, “American spending levels on illegal drugs stayed more or less the same.”  RAND drew some of its data from the Arrestee Drug Abuse Monitoring program, but it is no longer funded by the federal government which, one must assume, leaves it unable to know if the market for illegal drugs has expanded, shrunk or stayed the same.

The news about the illegal immigration from Latin American nations has a side to it that has not received much news coverage. It has to do with the views of four-star Marine Corps General John Kelly who heads the U.S. Military’s Southern Command. In a July 8 essay in the Military Times, “Central America Drug War a Dire Threat to U.S. National Security”, Gen. Kelly noted how the drug cartels have overwhelmed the governments of Honduras, El Salvador, and Guatemala, rendering any opposition to them too great a threat.

“Due to the insatiable U.S. demand for drugs, particularly cocaine, heroin and now methamphetamines, all produced in Latin American and smuggled into the U.S.” said Gen. Kelly, they have been left “near broken societies” in which the rule of law has been destroyed. How bad is it? According to the Migration Policy Institute in Washington, D.C., applications for asylum in neighboring countries—mostly Mexico and Costa Rica—are up 712%,

Cutting off aid to these countries as has been suggested by some will turn them into entities that are little more than names on a map and increase the distress of their law-abiding populations. Indeed, because so many of them have already come to the U.S., the children arriving here have families waiting for them. Seventy-three percent of the 47,017 minors apprehended at the border were from Honduras, El Salvador, and Guatemala. They will stay here to be processed by a system that has not deterred the estimated eleven million illegal aliens already living here.

According to Sen.

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Chicago crime crisis: Holder to send ATF agents instead of cops

by Jim Kouri on Saturday, July 19th, 2014

This is article 329 of 329 in the topic Criminal Activity

During his Wednesday visit to the crime-ridden city of Chicago to meet with the Windy City’s Mayor Rahm Emanual and his public safety chiefs, Attorney General Eric Holder, said that as part of his goal to help the city government fight crime and reduce youth violence he is directing the head of the Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) to deploy an additional seven ATF agents to its Chicago office.

According to a Justice Department press statement, the additional ATF agents will work with the U.S. Attorney Zachary Fardon and with federal, state and local law enforcement agencies. The additional seven agents brings the total of ATF enforcement staff with sworn-police status to 52 men and women.

But many law enforcement officials complain that Holder is more interested in furthering his anti-gun ownership agenda than in protecting life and property in Chicago. “Why is he sending gun-grabbers to Chicago instead of real law-enforcement officers? The ATF has a history of exceeding their authority. Remember Waco? Fast and Furious?” notes former police sergeant and detective Marty Sachs.

Sgt. Sachs points to a quote by Attorney General Holder in which he explains the ATF strategy: “The Department of Justice will continue to do everything in its power to help the city of Chicago combat gun violence,” said Holder. “These new agents are a sign of the federal government’s ongoing commitment to helping local leaders ensure Chicago’s streets are safe.”

Former police detective Iris Aquino shook her head and said, “He said it himself: helping Chicago combat gun violence. Does that mean he’s not interested in knife violence? Or blunt instrument violence? What about IED [improvised explosive device] violence? This administration is wrong when it comes to street crime; wrong on fighting criminal alien gangs; and wrong on combating Islamic terrorists.

Last month, the ATF premiered its Chicago Crime Gun Intelligence Center which promised to bring together the anti-gun activities of the Chicago Police Department, Illinois State Police and the ATF to deal with the illegal sales and possession of firearms in the State of Illinois, home of President Barack Obama and birthplace of Hillary Clinton.

Holder’s press statement claims that: “Gun crime is the primary driver of homicide in Chicago, and sixty percent of the guns recovered in violent crimes in Chicago were originally sold in other states and trafficked into the city. Given the interstate nature of these crimes, it is critical that federal and local law enforcement work together to identify traffickers and enforce federal gun laws.”

“There a two things that seem to be an obsession with Holder: White racism and gun ownership. Just recently he blamed dissatisfaction with the Obama administration on racism against blacks. And he blames climbing crime statistics on guns. He’s wrong on both counts,” said political strategist Michael Barker.

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Jose Antonio Vargas: The face of the entitled illegal alien

by Michelle Malkin on Wednesday, July 16th, 2014

This is article 449 of 452 in the topic Immigration

Screen Shot 2014-07-16 at 12.41.50 AMJose Antonio Vargas: The face of the entitled illegal alien
by Michelle Malkin
Creators Syndicate
Copyright 2014

They’ve blown it again, big time. They just can’t help themselves.

During the Bush years, the open-borders movement won over bleeding hearts in the White House but alienated the American public with radical displays of La Raza (“The Race”) militancy, desecrated American flags and Che Guevara shirt-wearing, fist-thrusting marches across the country.

Left-wing public relations consultants taught the amnesty mob to tone it down, turn the flags right-side up and stop threatening Reconquista. But the phony red-white-and-blue dye job didn’t last. The movement’s true extremist, entitled roots can’t be concealed for long.

On Monday, leading illegal-alien journalist turned activist Jose Antonio Vargas engaged in a foolish stunt that will backfire on him and his allies in the media and Hollywood and on Capitol Hill. An openly defiant law-breaker who proudly calls himself “the most privileged undocumented immigrant in the country,” Vargas traveled to Texas with a film crew to commune with illegal aliens surging across the border.

But on his way out of the Rio Grande Valley, the former Washington Post reporter and Pulitzer Prize winner was detained at the McAllen, Texas, airport by Customs and Border Patrol. He was attempting to clear security and board a flight without legally required U.S. identification.

No surprise: Vargas initially made it past the buffoons at the TSA.

The media-savvy amnesty agitator telegraphed the stunt beforehand in a piece for Politico. He hyped sympathetic coverage from the liberal Huffington Post. He tweeted a photo of his Philippine passport and a pocket Constitution, which he audaciously presented to authorities in lieu of valid ID.

View image on Twitter

The only IDs I have for security: Philippine passport and my pocketbook US Constitution @DefineAmerican & @MAC_UTPA

And then Vargas’ publicity minions captured and tweeted the exact moment when he was handcuffed, looking shocked and aggrieved that federal law enforcement officers would actually — gasp! — enforce the law.

An illegal-alien Icarus, Vargas had been riding high after movie theaters and CNN aired his biographical, pro-illegal immigration documentary. His amnesty activism is backed by the progressive Tides Center, a project of George Soros and former ACORN chief organizer Drummond Pike. To his elite friends in the no-borders industry, he’s a “hero.”

Journalists, celebrities and politicians immediately swallowed the propaganda bait, rallying to their privileged pal’s side. “#DontDeportJose,” they all cried in an orchestrated Twitter campaign.

Meanwhile, hundreds of thousands of law-abiding people from around the world are waiting patiently for their backlogged visa and green card applications to be reviewed.

Vargas’ outraged reporter friends don’t have much sympathy for those would-be Americans. Or for the Americans who’ve dedicated their lives to protecting homeland security and upholding our laws. Vargas’ enablers jumped to condemn the CBP employees in McAllen for doing their jobs and demanded that he be freed from “unfair” and “out of hand” detention, as one hysterical Roll Call reporter put it.

Unfair and out of hand?

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The Rolling Stone Interview: Michael Bloomberg says he isn’t afraid of the NRA, but should we be afraid of him?

by John Lott on Tuesday, July 15th, 2014

This is article 535 of 547 in the topic Gun Rights
Michael Bloomberg’s interview with Rolling Stone magazine has already created its share of controversy but really just for his comments about Colorado recalling several Democrat state Senators for voting for gun control.

In Colorado, we got a law passed. The NRA went after two or three state Senators in a part of Colorado where I don’t think there’s roads. It’s as far rural as you can get. And, yes, they lost recall elections. I’m sorry for that. We tried to help ‘em. But the bottom line is, the law is on the books, and being enforced. You can get depressed about the progress, but on the other hand, you’re saving a lot of lives.

But there are other bizarre claims that should be at least as controversial.  Bloomberg isn’t asking people just to lock up their guns, he clearly doesn’t want people to own guns.

And if you want to have a gun in your house, I think you’re pretty stupid – particularly if you have kids – but I guess you have a right to do that. Someday, there is going to be a suit against parents who smoke in their houses or have guns in their houses by a kid. It’s not that far-fetched. . . .

guns are dangerous. The statistics are overwhelming. You’re something like 22 times more likely to get killed in your home if you have a gun than if you don’t. [Gestures at a staffer.] Let’s say Amanda’s trying to break in. “Excuse me, Amanda, I’ve gotta go get my gun to shoot you. Now, where did I put that combination to that lock? And the bullets were where? I don’t know what the fuck…how do you turn the safety off?” Are you kidding me? The last thing you want to do when somebody breaks in and puts a gun toward you is try to go for a gun. That’s really stupid. I don’t know if you’re going to get shot one way, but I guarantee you’re going to get killed the other way.

About the one thing that is right here is that locking up guns, especially the way that Bloomberg wants them locked up, makes it very difficult to use defensively.  The claim about risks of guns in the home is based on completely bogus public health studies.  A brief discussion on the problems with this claim is provided in my book “More Guns, Less Crime” (University of Chicago Press, 2010, 3rd edition).


In addition, requiring that people lock up guns or reduce gun ownership does two things: 1) more criminals are emboldened to break into people homes while the residents are in the dwelling and 2) they are more likely to be successful in committing a violent crime.


Whatever one thinks of the NRA, it is clear that Bloomberg’s attack on them isn’t very honest.

But the NRA takes no prisoners. Put yourself in the following scenario. You’re a Senator or Congressman, a Democrat. I ask you to have background checks.

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Obama’s Immigration Lawyers’ Enrichment Act

by Michelle Malkin on Monday, July 14th, 2014

This is article 448 of 452 in the topic Immigration

Obama’s Immigration Lawyers’ Enrichment Act
by Michelle Malkin
Creators Syndicate
Copyright 2014

The American Dream is dying for tens of millions of unemployed, underemployed and long-term jobless citizens. But the White House has guaranteed that one sector of the U.S. economy will thrive for decades to come: Open-borders immigration lawyers.

Don’t believe the fibbing D.C. flacks. While the president’s spokesman Josh Earnest promised that “most” of the illegal immigrant youths from Central America flooding across our borders will “likely” be deported, decades of reality expose the White House lie. Our deportation system is designed to fail.

“Due process” in deportation is a euphemism for interminable delay. According to TRAC Immigration, which gathers data on the chronically backlogged immigration court system, there are currently more than 366,000 pending deportation cases with average wait times nationally of nearly 600 days. There are a measly 59 immigration courts staffed by a meager 235 judges to handle all those cases.

Insiders have told me again and again over the years: “It ain’t over ’til the alien wins.”

Democrats, as always, will blame lack of taxpayer funding. But here’s the cold, hard fact: The system is “broken” on purpose. As they clamor for mass illegal alien amnesty, left-wing immigration lawyers and ethnic activists operate a lucrative industry whose sole objective is to help illegal aliens and convicted criminal visa holders evade deportation for as long as possible. Groups such as the American Immigration Lawyers Association, the Immigrant Legal Resource Center, and the American Friends Service Committee make their livelihoods off administrative bottlenecks.

The racket’s chief enablers: The federal Executive Office for Immigration Review, which oversees the immigration courts nationwide, and its unaccountable appellate arm, the Board of Immigration Appeals, which routinely puts aliens’ rights over citizens’ safety.

The BIA’s 15 members are politically appointed, career bureaucrats who have the power to overturn deportation orders nationwide. The panel is comprised largely of alien-friendly advocates from immigration-law circles, former Justice Department attorneys and former BIA staff. These meddling activists regularly reopen factual findings of lower trial courts, violating fundamental principles of appellate review and giving illegal aliens more opportunities to press their cases in federal courts than legal American citizens have.

The legal tricks for evading the flimsy immigration dragnet are well known among the immigrant population, as I first reported 12 years ago in a Center for Immigration Studies report on the deportation abyss. “Even if an alien is removable,” an EOIR bureaucrat testified back then, “he or she may file an application for relief from removal, such as asylum, voluntary departure, suspension of deportation, cancellation of removal, adjustment of status, registry or a waiver of inadmissibility.”

Today’s young illegal border surgers have a plethora of litigation bites at the apple that will keep them in our country in perpetuity. As one of countless immigration law firms now advises, “There a several forms of relief that an unaccompanied child may apply for in immigration court.” Voluntary departure is the de facto “catch and release” option that entrusts illegals to deport themselves. Then there’s the scam-riddled asylum application process, which is significantly loosened for minors. Next alternative: the special juvenile immigrant visa which offers lawful permanent resident status to unaccompanied illegal alien children.

Another route: The fraud-friendly U visa.

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Obama’s end of the USA via fomenting foreign invasion

by Sher Zieve on Monday, July 14th, 2014

This is article 446 of 452 in the topic Immigration

It has been a few years since I’ve talked and, subsequently, interviewed former USBP Supervisor David J. Stoddard (Ret). In my opinion – and that of many others – there really is no better information source than Dave for what is currently transpiring at and on our Southern Border.

David J. Stoddard BIO

US Border Patrol Supervisor David J Stoddard (Ret) was with the US Border Patrol for 27 years. David served in Calexico, California, Vermont, Yuma, Tucson Sector Headquarters and Naco, Arizona and worked in Texas, Florida, Puerto Rico and other locations.

Dave, also, provided testimony about immigration reform to Rep. F. James Sensenbrenner’s (R-WI) House Subcommittee on Immigration and Claims in 1999 and a Congressional subcommittee on Criminal Justice, Drug Policy and Human Resources in 2002.

The Interview

Sher: Dave, it’s been a long time since we last spoke about the problems on our Southern border; problems that have recently reached crisis if not catastrophe mode for all US citizens. Thanks so much for your time, today. It appears that thousands of illegal immigrants including the drug cartels, human traffickers, Latin gangs, Islamists and even their ISIS members are crossing our border at will, now, due to Obama’s illegal open border policy. Have you had Intel reports as to what’s really going on at what used to be our Southern border that you can share with the readers or been there, recently, yourself?

Dave: I live on the Mexican border and I get reports from other border residents in addition to what I observe myself. My contacts are rural residents, ranchers, Border Patrol Agents, sheriffs and visitors. I can tell you, without equivocation, that border enforcement has been curtailed to such a degree that it is practically non-existent. But the non-enforcement phenomenon is also all over the USA.

Foreign national criminals have been released on the street after serving their sentences for major crimes. The recent admission from the Obama administration is that 38,000 illegal aliens were released in America instead of being deported. (If Obama broke to releasing 38,000, the real figure must be three times that number.) The lame excuse offered by Obama’s minions is that the law requires the release of those criminals. It may very well be that some of those criminals were Cubans or other nationalities that won’t accept their ex-patriot criminals but apparently no effort is made to repatriate those scum. John Kerry should be withholding foreign aid, and taking other diplomatic measures to pressure those countries into accepting their citizens. The criminals from the Western hemisphere should have been entered into deportation proceedings and held as flight risks. But, Obama has stated that deporting aliens makes no sense.

The problem is not just with the Mexican border. The USA is importing Muslim extremists that establish enclaves in various locations, such as in Minnesota, Maine and Michigan where Muslims are granted refugee status and given taxpayer money, placed on the public dole, granted government housing and free medical care. In Minnesota the state is paying taxi fares for Muslims to keep medical appointments. These “immigrants” are not assimilating into American society. They are turning their enclaves into miniature versions of the hell-holes they “fled.” Take for example, Dearborn, Michigan, where they observe Shari’a law and scorn every other law.

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