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Former President Obama lived a life of lies and deceit before becoming President and expanded his deceitful ways into very serious crimes, during his 8 years of his “mission’, in my opinion.

Obama “sealed”, classified, and other wise, hid Fast and Furious papers form purview, like he did his passport, his college FAF forms, his Social Security Numbers, and many other records, including those overflowing into the deceit used in the FISA courts!

I am certain there is no other reason for Obama to either Classify or use Executive Privilege to hide the facts from the Congress Intelligence Committee and the family of our Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry, other than to protect Eric Holder and/or himself from possible criminal charges for blatant criminal negligence or some other crimes.

The use by Obama of our FISA court for, what I believe was his “personal Black Ops” agency, to monitor his political foes, news reporters, those who were critical of him, and other personal reasons, seems to be overwhelming. Who else would…who else could have ordered Susanne Powers to unmask the identity of over 300 US citizens in Obama’s last year, 2016? Clapper, Brennan and Rice all say, under oath, that they know nothing about it. So who ordered the unmasking? Unmasking is not a minor deal, it is a major deal! The names of citizens discovered during a FISA over hear of foreigners, according to FISA Law, are to be deleted. Who ordered the unmasking and why? Congress and we the people, demand an answer!

Only the President can review the FISA court evidence and make the determination, if a crime probably was committed, who should investigate and then order the investigation. Only the President can declassify Documents that Agencies refuse to declassify! The President of the United States doesn’t “ask” the Attorney General or FBI Director to open or close an investigation; he tells them to do so! He may ask their opinion and then direct them to act…but the President “is” the boss…he doesn’t ask…he directs. That is what President Trump, in my opinion, must start doing or, in the very least, he should start reviewing evidence and see what the hell is going on! Declassify the records DOJ is withholding from Congress. It is Obama holdovers who are refusing to release…I’ll bet any money on that!

He should, in the very least, examine all the FISA papers regarding the Carter Page case and then if warranted, declassify all those documents, so Congress can do their job. If the President doesn’t want to take charge, for whatever reason, then allow Congress and “we the people” know if Obama abused the FISA court system and the Rights of Citizens, against illegal Search and Seizure!

J Gary DiLaura
Retired FBI Agent

We bring you the transcript of
his speach which has gone viral across the country

“So over the last several days Mr. Speaker there has been a lot of discussion about an open and honest debate with respect to school shootings, gun violence, gun control etc.

And an open and honest debate as I understant it, is one that would rely on data, facts, evidenc, analysis, reason, logic etc.etc.

And I'm certainly willing to have that debate, I think if we were going to look seriously at school shootings and gun control we would analyze things like.... why do all mass shootings seem to take place in gun-free zones?

Wouldn't it be reasonable to test whether or not the efficacy of gun-free zones have actually achieved what their intended intent is.

We'd start to look at... most of these shooters come from broken homes, what sort of government policies have actually encouraged broken homes, you can look at left-leaning think tanks like the Brooking Institute, who will actually say that some of it can be attributed to various cultural changes that happened in the sixties to include the abortion industry.

You could look at more conservative-leaning organizations that will say the welfare states contributes significantly to dismantling the family as families became more and more dependent on the government, then they were.... mothers and fathers in the home raising children.

We could look at various status with those areas in the United States and around the world that have strict gun-control measures and what their crime rates look like, weather at Chicago, New York City, Washington DC and others, that have incredibly strict gun laws and yet for some reason hasn't seemed to stop the gun violence in those particular areas.

We can look at the analysis of 538, which is considered more of a left of center data analysis Think Tank, we have several analyst now confirm that data they were looking at not just in United States but in Canada, Great Britain and Australia, that they were shocked that the data did not support what they thought gun control measures would actually achieve. We can look at the number of cases within the United States where a gun has been used for self-defense, estimates range everywhere from one hundred thousand uses too close to a million uses within the United States. Now, some organizations and some reporters only report on the ones where a gun was used and it actually resulted in the death or maiming of the perpetrator, but if you look at the ones where the gun was used where the mere presence of the firearm actually dissuaded the criminal from committing an act of violence, an act of rape, an act of murder, the number shoots up, it skyrockets.

So when people on this side talk about the importance of the Second Amendment please understand it's not just some base philosophical conviction we all have, it is rooted in the idea, that while we may be a post-enlightenment society, the vast majority of horrible atrocities that we've seen have happened in those post enlightenment societies, it's happened as a result of government systematically disarming citizens and claiming themselves to be the sole responsible party for their security, and then turning on those same citizens and punishing them.

That's the most egregious cases but in the individual cases of self-defense, that's why people on this side of the aisle hold the 2nd Amendment in such high esteem because we honestly believe that you have an inherent right to defend yourself, and your ability to defend yourself should not be excluded to your size. Firearms provide someone that is weaker and not as fast, the ability to actually defend themselves from a stronger attacker.

Some of the other things that we would look at and some of the things that I would hope we would have bipartisan support for... all of us agree that we need to make sure that our students are better protected when they go to school.
One of the things that we would look at is arming certain teachers, not every teacher but a teacher that is comfortable with it, is former law enforcement, is former military, that is now in the classroom, Deligate Plum said yesterday that that was ridiculous to consider... why? Is it because the other side of this debate will only accept one "solution" to this problem and that is tearing apart or gutting the Second Amendment.

And I understand we're going to mention just a couple of the bills that were done this year ... background checks getting rid of bump stocks.

If you’re wondering the other reason that we can't have an honest debate over this one, is quite frankly because I don't think any of us on this side of the aisle believe you when you say "that's all you want to do"

It will be bump stocks and be background checks then we'll be different kind of background checks at register the guns, then after that it'll be we need to ban assault weapons ... what's an assault weapon? Something that looks scary.

Then after that it'll be semi-automatic rifles, after that it'll be semi-automatic handguns, then it will be revolvers, shotguns...Because when the policies fail to produce the results you are promising to your constituents, you'll be back with more reasons why we have to infringe on Second Amendment rights.

The other reason why it's really difficult to have an honest and open debate about this, it's because of members of this body comparing members on this side of the aisle to Nazis.

Members on the other side of the aisle saying that when a 24 year old teacher gets up and says that the whole debate is between the Second Amendment or her life. That's a false dilemma. And quite frankly one of the ones that I've found most offensive, along with being compared to Nazis, was being compared to segregationists.

I just want to remind everyone of something very quickly, it was not our party that supported slavery, that fought women's suffrage, that rounded up tens of thousands of asian-americans and put them in concentration camps, that supported Jim Crow, that supported segregation, or supported Mass resistance... That wasn't our party... That was the Democrat Party!

Now I'm thrilled at the Democrats no longer believe that and I don't believe that a single current member of this body who is the Democrat, ever believe those things but I would really appreciate it if every time you want to make a powerful point you don't project the sins, the atrocities, and the injustices, the Democratic Party perpetrated on others ...onto us

So if we want to have an open and honest debate, I'm all for that, let's do that, but let's start with a certain degree of mutual respect. It starts with a certain degree of not assuming that the only reason why we believe in the 2nd Amendment is because the NRA paid us off? Well if that's the sort of logic you want to use, why don't you go take a look at how much money the NRA spends and how much money Planned Parenthood spends, because when I get up here and talk about abortion I don't assume that you're a bought and paid for by Planned Parenthood. I don't assume you're horrible people, because I disagree with you on a policy position. I assume that you have deep convictions that we can have argument and debate about it.

But if you're not willing to reciprocate that level of respect, well don't be surprised when it becomes more difficult to talk about these things. Because there is a lot that we can do and there is a lot that we need to do to ensure the security of our children, and our citizens.

But yes we are going to have a problem with so-called “Solutions” which infringe on people's liberty under the promise... the government will provide for the security, because ultimately in this last shooting we had the perfect example of government being engaged over 30 times and still failing to provide security for those students.

Thank you Mr. Speaker
Virginia Delegate Nick Freitas

Sunday, 18 March 2018 06:57

By the Numbers

There are 30,000 gun related deaths per year by firearms, and this number is not disputed. U.S. population 324,059,091 as of Wednesday, June 22, 2016. Do the math: 0.000000925% of the population dies from gun related actions each year. Statistically speaking, this is insignificant! What is never told, however, is a breakdown of those 30,000 deaths, to put them in perspective as compared to other causes of death:

• 65% of those deaths are by suicide which would never be prevented by gun laws

• 15% are by law enforcement in the line of duty and justified

• 17% are through criminal activity, gang and drug related or mentally ill persons – gun violence (also justified self defense falls in this category)

• 3% are negligent discharge deaths

So technically, "gun violence" is not 30,000 annually, but drops to 5,100. Still too many? Well, first, how are those deaths spanned across the nation?
• 480 homicides (9.4%) were in Chicago
• 344 homicides (6.7%) were in Baltimore
• 333 homicides (6.7%) were in Detroit
• 290 homicides (5.8.%) were in NY City
• 119 homicides (2.3%) were in Washington D.C. (a 54% increase over prior years)

So basically, 31% of all gun crime happens in just 5 cities. All 5 of those cities have strict gun laws, so it is not the lack of law that is the root cause.
But what about other deaths each year?

• 40,000+ die from a drug overdose–THERE IS NO EXCUSE FOR THAT!

• 36,000 people die per year from the flu, far exceeding the criminal gun deaths

• 34,000 people die per year in traffic fatalities(exceeding gun deaths even if you include suicide)


Now it gets good:

• 200,000+ people die each year (and growing) from preventable medical errors. You are safer in Chicago than when you are in a hospital!

• 710,000 people die per year from heart disease. It’s time to stop the double cheeseburgers!

So what is the point?

If the anti-gun movement focused their attention on heart disease, even a 10% decrease in cardiac deaths would save twice the number of lives annually of all gun-related deaths (including suicide, law enforcement, etc.). A 10% reduction in medical errors would be 66% of the total gun deaths or 4 times the number of criminal homicides......Simple, easily preventable 10% reductions!

So you have to ask yourself, in the grand scheme of things, why the focus on guns? It's pretty simple.:
Taking away guns gives control to governments.

The founders of this nation knew that regardless of the form of government, those in power may become corrupt and seek to rule as the British did by trying to disarm the populace of the colonies. It is not difficult to understand that a disarmed populace is a controlled populace.

Thus, the second amendment was proudly and boldly included in the U.S. Constitution. It must be preserved at all costs.


Friday, 09 March 2018 21:53

Sanibel Music Festival

The mission of the Festival is to present classical music of the highest standard and to promote the careers of emerging artists through performance opportunities at affordable prices.

This weekend on Saturday the 10th, the festival brings two magnificently talented quartets—the Jupiter and Jasper Quartet—joined together for a dynamic concert in a combined performance.

Jasper String Quartet
J Freivogel, violin
Sae Chonabayashi, violin
Sam Quintal, viola
Rachel Henderson Freivogel, cello

Winner of the 2012 Cleveland Quartet Award, the Jasper String Quartet has been hailed as “sonically delightful and expressively compelling” (The Strad) and as “powerful” (The New York Times). Based in Philadelphia, the Jaspers are the Professional Quartet-in-Residence at Temple University’s Center for Gifted Young Musicians. From 2015-2017 the Quartet premiered their commission of Aaron Jay Kernis’ Third Quartet across the world, including at Carnegie Hall and Wigmore Hall. After winning the Grand Prize and the Audience Prize in the 2008 Plowman Chamber Music Competition, the Jaspers went on to win first prize at numerous competitions—the 2008 Coleman Competition, the 2008 Chamber Music Yellow Springs, as well as the Silver Medal at the 2008 and 2009 Fischoff Chamber Music competitions, as well as many others.

Formed at Oberlin Conservatory, the Quartet became Ensemble-in-Residence 2010-12. They originally studied at Rice University as the Graduate Quartet-in-Residence and later trained with the Tokyo String Quartet as Yale University’s Graduate Quartet-in-Residence. In 2012, they were awarded a Chamber Music America grant through its Residency Partnership Program for work in Philadelphia schools and have brought well over 100 outreach programs into schools. They have performed throughout the United States and abroad. Currently, they record exclusively for Sono Luminus and have released three highly acclaimed albums – Beethoven Op. 131, The Kernis Project: Schubert, and The Kernis Project: Beethoven.

Jupiter String Quartet
Nelson Lee, violin
Megan Freivogel, violin
Liz Freivogel, viola
Daniel McDonough, cello

The Jupiter String Quartet is a dynamic and democratic ensemble that has developed into one of the world’s most sought-after chamber groups. Over its 14-year history, the Jupiter has won first prize in multiple competitions including Banff International String Quartet Competition and the Fischoff National Chamber Music Competition. Graduates of the Cleveland Institute of Music and Oberlin College, the Quartet continues to gather acclaim through membership in Lincoln Center’s Chamber Music Society Two, as well as receiving an Avery Fisher Career Grant in 2008.

Jasper Jupiter StringOctet

In addition to their performing career, the Jupiters are the String Quartet-in-Residence at the University of Illinois in Champaign-Urbana. The Quartet has recorded works by Mendelssohn, Beethoven, Shostakovich and Britten for Marquis Records. As part of a recording for iTunes in conjunction with the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center and Deutsche Grammophon, the Quartet performed American works by Barber, Seeger and Gershwin. Most recently, they collaborated on a collection of works by Ravel (Ravel: Intimate Masterpieces) on the Oberlin College label. Two upcoming recordings are in the works on the Azica label this season.

For other upcoming shows:

Friday, 09 March 2018 18:38

Immokalee Cattle Drive & Jamboree

Experience the pioneer spirit and rich agricultural history of Florida’s heartland with a cattle drive and jamboree on Saturday, March 10, 2018 from 8:00 AM–6:00 PM at the Immokalee Pioneer Museum at Roberts Ranch. The event is free with food and drink available for purchase.

The cattle drive starts at 9:30AM along Main Street in Immokalee led by cattle boss Clint Raulerson. The drive is preceded by an honorary procession including descendants of the Roberts family and dignitaries in the cattle industry. The drive leads to Roberts Ranch, a former farmstead listed on the National Register of Historic Places and operated as a Collier County museum. Activities and entertainment kick off when the cows come home and include storytelling, roping and whip cracking demonstrations, alligator wrestling, traditional food demonstrations, music, craft and food vendors, and so much more. Bring the whole family to the kids’ corral with petting zoo, games, and crafts.

Due to temporary road closures for the cattle drive, it is recommended that observers are situated by 9:00 AM. A free shuttle service will be provided to the cattle drive route and back, so bring a lawn chair and enjoy the show!
Come early to support 4-H and the Immokalee Livestock Show with a pancake breakfast beginning at 8:00 AM ($4/person).

The Immokalee Pioneer Museum at Roberts Ranch is one of five free Collier County Museums. Originally home to cattleman Robert Roberts and his family, this 13-acre historic site and museum provides visitors with a rare opportunity to experience daily working life on a Southwest Florida pioneer homestead and citrus grove from the early 1900s. Exhibits, programs, and fifteen carefully preserved original buildings and features tell the story of the cow hunters, ranchers and pioneer-spirited families who struggled to tame this vast wilderness prairie on the edge of the Big Cypress Swamp. The Museum offers individual self-guided tours and group educational programs for children and adults.

Florida Cattle Industry Historic Timeline

*1521 Juan Ponce de León abandons Spanish cattle on Florida’s west coast after his settlement attempt fails

*1565 Organized ranching begins in support of St. Augustine and Spanish missions across northern Florida

*1600 20,000 head of wild cattle (descendants of abandoned Spanish cattle) roam Florida

*1700s Seminoles are the major cattle producers in Florida

*1800-1850 American pioneers establish free-range cattle ranches; cow-hunters (known as Florida Crackers) manage cattle

*1860s As the Civil War progresses, beef supplies in most Southern States dry up. Florida becomes the only beef supply available to the Confederates. Union forces on the Florida coast continually battle Confederates for cattle herds.

*1897 Early settlers rename the growing community Immokalee, a Seminole word meaning “my home.”

*1914 Roberts family moves to Immokalee from Ona, Florida in three ox-carts.

*1949 Florida Fence Law signed into law ending free-range ranching and cow-hunting

*1952 Red Cattle Company growth peaks at 107,000 acres

*1980 Red Cattle Company dissolves

*1994 Roberts Family Trust donates the family farmstead to Collier County Museums

Immokalee Pioneer Museum at Roberts Ranch

Open Tues. – Sat. 9:00 am - 4:00 pm

1215 Roberts Avenue West, Immokalee, FL 34142

For more information call

(239) 252-2611

Friday, 09 March 2018 18:37

Daylight Saving Time For Ever?

The legislature often is accused of wanting to turn the clock back on Florida, and in one instance, the charge literally is true.

It would actually be a step forward.

A bill that would keep daylight saving time year round passed through the House last month and Senate just passed it on Tuesday with surprisingly little opposition...33 to 2. Apparently, the idea of never having to reset your clocks and adjust your schedule has strong bipartisan appeal in an otherwise highly polarized political climate. Having more sunshine in the Sunshine State is something on which most Floridians can agree.

It's not like legislators are trying to repeal the laws of physics. Although the Earth's rotation around the sun brings a natural change in the length of days, daylight saving time (DST) is purely a man-made construct to organize social activities around the difference in sunshine.

DST was first widely used in the U.S. during the two world wars, when it was seen as a way to save energy. After World War II, states (and even cities) were allowed to set their own sunshine standards, but that resulted in a confusing patchwork of times. In 1966, Congress enacted the Uniform Time Act to standardize daylight saving time, although states have the option of remaining on standard time year-round if Congress approves. Currently, only Hawaii and most of Arizona have opted out. Indiana had been strictly on standard time until its legislature adopted DST in 2005.

The clock change has become an ingrained habit without sufficient justification. Although a 1975 report by the U.S. Department of Transportation found DST resulted in very modest savings on energy consumption, subsequent research has indicated the opposite is true. For example, University of California economist studied Indiana's switch to DST and found that daylight saving time led to a 1 percent overall rise in residential electricity use, costing the state an extra $9 million.

Even more compelling are the medical effects of the time change. A 2008 study by Swedish researchers who examined heart attack rates in Sweden since 1987 found the number of attacks rose about 5 percent during the first week of daylight saving time.
This and other studies linked disrupted sleep patterns to the cardiac episodes.

Staying on daylight saving time makes particular sense in Florida, as the additional clock hour of sunshine at the end of the day is suitable to this state's tourist-heavy economy. It would mean more daylight on beaches, more daylight to shop, etc. Plus, Florida's extreme southern geography means it experiences less variation in the length of winter and summer days than do northern states.

Anyway, time to spring ahead is here again, Saturday night at 2am, it turns into 3am. And once again, we loose an hour of sleep! But if the Governor signs it and Congress does it’s part...It will be our last time.

Saturday, 03 March 2018 08:32

What CAN we do: Mass Shootings



The question of allowing trained personnel to have access to firearms in schools should not be the outrageous non-starter that anti-gun activists assert. It's an issue at least worth debating among reasonable measures to halt the senseless mass death inflicted by shooters armed with assault weapons and high-capacity magazines.


The gun debate for too long has been stalled by intransigence. The moment one side offers an incremental solution, the other side quickly dismisses it as unworkable. The result is that no changes are made, the mass killings continue, and the gun lobby emerges victorious. One issue that won't go away is what to do in those crucial few minutes when an active shooter is on the loose in a school but police have yet to arrive.


So far, those favoring sharp curtailment of gun rights have instantly rejected the idea of arming school personnel, yet they have offered no viable response plan when an active shooter is slaughtering kids. President Donald Trump fumbled and bumbled his way through an effort to articulate why guns in schools might work in response to the Feb. 14 high school massacre in Parkland, Fla.


Speaking at a White House forum last week that included parents and colleagues of Parkland's victims, Trump called for arming up to 20 percent of teachers, citing the "deterrent value."


There is no deterrent value to putting guns in schools. Suicidal maniacs with assault rifles and high-capacity magazines have a death wish. Nikolas Cruz, the gunman in the Parkland shooting, is an outlier as a survivor. Most shooters will take their own lives if police don't do it for them.


Even if a ban on assault rifles occurred tomorrow, 5 million to 10 million AR-15 type assault rifles would still be in circulation, the National Shooting Sports Foundation estimates. It's not a question of if but when another school mass shooting will occur.


What's the plan for that?


A program enacted in Texas in 2013 allows schools to apply for a highly restrictive program in which a volunteer staffer undergoes extensive police training as a school marshal. The staffer must pass a thorough background check and complete 80 hours of training. An estimated 172 of Texas' 1,023 school districts participate.


Similar to an air marshal on a commercial airliner, the school marshal's identity is secret, known only by the top administrator and police. The weapon must stay hidden, locked and secured but within quick access.


This is not the gun-crazy idea that critics suggest, nor is it a golden solution to mass shootings. It's a reasonable, incremental plan to minimize casualties in those crucial minutes before the police arrive.


The fire-stoking rhetoric is getting us nowhere. Let's give serious thought to serious solutions.

"Adam" is a guy I've created to illustrate one big and fascinating idea from a new book by British psychotherapist William Pullen: Movement is medicine.

Yes! Forget the word "exercise" for now. Just moving our bodies -- walking, dancing, jogging, preferably in nature -- can help free us from stress, emotional pain and whatever else we're dealing with that makes our bodies feel stuck, unsettled and depressed.

This therapeutic connection between the mind and body isn't a theory; it's a fact of life. Your body is self-healing and wondrous, and when you move it you automatically get the health benefits that come from the blood and lymph flowing, the molecules of emotion circulating, the tissues nourished, the joints juiced.

And when you add mindfulness to movement, therapist Pullen explains, you're on a self-directed path to enhanced well-being, physical and mental.

So back to Adam: In our hypothetical scenario, Adam is stressed to the point of depression. He's not sleeping. He can't focus at work. And he's starting a relationship with Johnnie Walker in startling and destructive ways.

Why? Because his wife wants a divorce. He's shocked but also a little relieved. Maybe he'd be happier without her. What should he do?

"DRT is a powerful and engaging step-by-step therapeutic method for confronting difficult feelings and circumstances in your life through movement," writes Pullen, author of "Running With Mindfulness," in which he enthusiastically gives detailed instructions.

Adam -- a slow runner, but that doesn't matter -- could use DRT to work through challenging issues around divorce. But Pullen assures us this revelatory combo of movement, mindfulness and provocative questions is also good for dealing with anger, letting go of fear, overcoming the terrors of perfectionism and more.

"Movement makes it easier to shift our perspective, raise our moods, and return to a place of hope, energy and possibility."

The acronym DRT stands for Dynamic Running Therapy, but it's certainly not limited to running or runners. Anyone can do it, at any level of fitness, alone or with a trusted listening partner, as long as you're willing to commit to the process and follow a number of steps.

Adam manages to do most all of them -- from head-to-toe body scans before he runs to journaling for a few minutes right after. At the end of his time using Pullen's techniques, he moves on to a much happier and healthier relationship with wife No. 2.

Such a satisfying ending. Such an enlightening book. Here are a few more of Pullen's steps "to get moving, get mindful, and lift yourself out of low moods."


Listen To Your Body.


DRT isn't designed to involve challenging exercise. If you can barely walk a block, you can still do it. Think of it as a tool for increasing your self-awareness and your body awareness, a method for "noticing the tone of your inner dialogue and meeting whatever you find there with acceptance and patience."


Make Room For Feelings.


When you move with intention and focus on a particular question -- e.g., "Where does the anxiety about divorce live in my body?" -- you will reconnect with feelings you may have hidden deep down. "Emotion in motion can be very powerful," therapist Pullen writes, so be prepared to welcome those feelings, without judgment or shame.


Don’t Strive Too Hard.


Mindful movement isn't like conventional exercise. Striving too hard can create more stress and anxiety. "The key is finding your own pace, finding your footing, and finding yourself. It will happen on its own if you stay present. ...
"The pain you feel when you are depressed provides an ongoing opportunity to improve your mindful practice," he writes, cheerfully.

"Each time you feel the bark of the black dog it is a chance to come back once more to the body, to sensation, and to recognize that thoughts come and go, feelings come and go. ... Acknowledge the thought or feeling as just that, and let it pass on by."

If you get a busy signal when you think about your "inner dialogue," don't stress. Pullen's book gives you lots of questions and prompts to guide you. It's a process, he reminds us, and if you're patient and forgiving, you'll discover gold.

"All of this will take time. Be patient. There is no rush. Let the experience flow and feel organic." -- William Pullen


Marilynn Preston

Dana Mirman didn’t pay much attention when she noticed what she assumed was a mosquito bite on her shoulder.

“After all, I live in Florida, people get bites,” says the 41-year-old communications professional.

Even when it began throbbing overnight she didn't worry much, assuming it was a simple allergic reaction. The next day she came down with flu-like symptoms, including vomiting and fever. “I still didn’t connect the two,” she says.

But later that evening her temperature spiked to 104 and her husband rushed her to the emergency room. The staff checked her blood pressure, and saw it was plummeting. They immediately started her on I.V. fluids and powerful antibiotics, she says—a response that likely saved her life.

Mirman was a victim of sepsis, an often deadly reaction to certain infections that can quickly race through your body, shutting down vital organs. While not well known, it's actually more common than heart attacks, and just as deadly.

More than a million people in the U.S. develop sepsis each year, and more than 250,000 deaths a year are linked to it, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. That’s higher than earlier estimates—an increase the CDC attributes mainly to better reporting on the infection, as well as the growing number of older people, who are especially susceptible to sepsis.

While many cases are linked to infections contracted in hospitals, doctor offices, nursing homes, and other healthcare facilities, a report out todayfrom the CDC says that nearly half are community-acquired, meaning from infections people contract in their homes, schools, playgrounds, and elsewhere. Any infection can lead to sepsis, from a manicure gone wrong, food poisoning, or a simple urinary tract infection.

One reason sepsis is so dangerous is that patients and even doctors often don’t recognize the problem until it’s too late, says Anthony Fiore, M.D., of the CDC’s Division of Healthcare Quality Promotion and an author of the new report. “Rapid early treatment can save lives," he says. “It’s just like a heart attack or stroke,” in that the longer you wait, the deadlier it is.

Here’s what you need to know about sepsis, including how to recognize it and what to do if you suspect it.

How Sepsis Harms

Sepsis often starts with a local infection, most often in the lungs, digestive tract, urinary tract, or, as in Mirman’s case, on the skin. It usually stems from a bacterial infection, but fungal or viral infections can trigger sepsis, too.

Whenever the body develops an infection, the immune system normally kicks in, producing chemicals to fight the infection. But sometimes—either because the triggering bacteria is unusually powerful or because the person’s immune system is already weakened by other health problems—those chemicals are set loose in the bloodstream and course through the body.

Instead of just fighting the local infection, those chemicals unleashed by the immune system cause widespread inflammation and damage tissues in the liver, kidneys, heart, and other organs. Within hours, blood clots can begin to form, and damage to blood vessels causes blood pressure to drop, which in turn slows the delivery of vital nutrients to those organs already under attack. In the final stages, the heart weakens and organs begin to fail.

Who’s at Risk?

The new CDC reports helps identify who’s most at risk of sepsis. That includes people:

• With chronic diseases. Seven out of 10 people in the CDC study who developed sepsis had diabetes, lung, kidney, or liver disease, or some other chronic condition. People with those conditions are at increased risk because they are susceptible to infection.

• With conditions that weakened immune systems, such as AIDS or cancer.

• Who are 65 or older or younger than a year old, probably because they too are more prone to infection.

• Who have recently been in a hospital, nursing home, or other healthcare facility, in part because infection-causing bacteria are often common in those institutions.

How to Prevent Sepsis

While sepsis is often not recognized until it’s already progressed, Fiore said many cases could be prevented.

For one thing, the CDC report found that most sepsis patients have some underlying health problem that requires them to have frequent contact with doctors. Those visits, Fiore says, are an opportunity for healthcare providers to prevent infections that can turn septic (by, for example, ensuring that diabetics get thorough exams of their feet to check for wounds that could breed infections) and to educate people about warning signs for sepsis.

In addition, there are a number of steps people can take on their own to protect themselves from the underlying infections that can trigger sepsis. Here’s how:

• Get vaccinated. Thirty-five percent of sepsis cases in the CDC study stemmed from pneumonia. Yet the CDC says that only 20 percent of high-risk adults under age 65 and 60 percent of those 65 and older have been vaccinated against that disease. And annual flu shots can also prevent respiratory infections that can sometimes turn septic. But only about a third of sepsis patients in the CDC study had a record of being vaccinated against the flu. “Thousands more deaths could be prevented with better coverage,” wrote the authors of the CDC report.

• Treat urinary tract infections promptly. A quarter of sepsis cases resulted from urinary tract infections. So it’s important to see a healthcare provider if you have warning signs of those infections—usually a painful, burning feeling when you urinate and a strong urge to “go” often—and, when appropriate, be treated with antibiotics. UTIs are also common among hospital patients, especially those who have been catheterized, so it’s extra important to watch for those infections while in the hospital.

• Clean skin wounds properly. About one in 10 sepsis cases follows a skin infection. So it’s essential to care for wounds and scrapes properly. That means washing with soap and water, cleaning out any dirt or debris, and covering wounds. And people with diabetes should make sure that they follow good foot care practices, since wounds there can often develop dangerous infections.

• Avoid infections in hospitals. Since many infections that turn septic originate in hospitals and other healthcare facilities, it’s essential that you—and your healthcare providers—take steps to avoid those infections. That means, for example, insisting that everyone who comes into your hospital room—including doctors and nurses—wash their hands every time they touch you. Read more tips on how to avoid infections in hospitals.


Watch for Warning Signs

If you do develop an infection, it’s important to watch for signs of sepsis and, if you suspect it, act fast. Here’s what to do:

• Know the symptoms. These include fever plus chills, shortness of breath, rapid breathing, increased heart rate, diarrhea, vomiting, rash, or pain, which many survivors describe as the worst they’ve ever felt. Disorientation or confusion can also be signs of sepsis.

• Act fast. If you have any of those symptoms, “contact a healthcare provider and say, ‘I think I have an infection and it’s really gotten worse, and I think it’s possible I could have sepsis,” Fiore says. If it’s after hours, either contact the providers on-call service or, if you feel very sick, go to the emergency room. “It’s not something you sit on until morning,” he says.

• Demand attention. Healthcare providers sometimes miss sepsis, or fail to react quickly enough, says Lisa McGiffert, the director of Consumer Reports Safe Patient Project. “Patients and their advocates need to be aggressive in pushing for quick action, and there is no excuse for a hospital or emergency room to respond to sepsis slowly once it is diagnosed,” McGiffert says. “Hospitals can do a lot to prevent death from sepsis by diagnosing it early and responding with urgency.”

• Get the right treatment. If your doctor suspects sepsis, you should get treated with IV fluids and antibiotics right away. Initially, you will probably need a broad-spectrum antibiotic, which targets multiple bacteria. But your doctors should also order tests to identify the responsible bacteria and, if possible, switch you to an antibiotic that targets that specific bacteria.

In addition, Mirman—who started volunteering for the Sepsis Alliance, an organization that raises awareness about the condition, after her experience—emphasizes the importance of having support when dealing with sepsis. Sepsis can be extremely disorienting, and cause sleepiness, she says. “I was so exhausted, all I wanted to do was sleep” Mirman remembers. If it weren’t for her husband, she might never have made it to the emergency room. “I would not have picked up a phone and called 911.”


Consumer Reports

Just because you die in Florida, that does not mean all of your assets are governed by Florida law. If you own shares of a corporation or partnership, for example, your estate's rights may be governed by the laws of another state. Furthermore, your estate may be restricted in terms of how it may dispose of such business interests.


Florida Court Declines to Hear Claim Against Out-of-State Family Partnership

Many businesses use buy-sell agreements as a tool to ensure continuity of ownership. Basically, a buy-sell agreement states that when a partner or owner dies, a specified person or group–often the other partners or co-owners–has the legal option to purchase the deceased party's interest. The agreement should also specify a method for properly valuing the deceased party's share.

Buy-sell agreements are generally enforceable and they can override other provisions of an estate plan or Florida probate law regarding inheritance. This is why it is important to consult with a Florida probate attorney if you are uncertain as to the potential impact of a buy-sell agreement on your own business interests. In some cases, an agreement can even prevent your estate from litigating a dispute in the Florida courts.

Here is a recent example. This case involves the disputed fractional ownership of a farm in Massachusetts. The decedent in this case belonged to a family limited partnership, of which she held a 0.2 percent interest. The partnership agreement, signed six years before the decedent's death, contained a buy-sell provision. Specifically, when a limited partner died, the agreement said the partnership had the right to buy back the deceased partner's share unless she left it to a family member. In this context, family member did not include spouses.

This became an issue when the decedent's husband attempted to claim the shares in the family partnership for himself. The husband opened a probate estate for his wife in Florida. More than three years after her death, he moved to reopen the estate and asked a Florida court to hold that he lawfully owned the shares, as the partnership had not exercised its option under the buy-sell agreement within the specified time period.

The partnership maintained the Florida courts lacked “personal jurisdiction” to hear the case. In any lawsuit a court must have jurisdiction over both the subject matter of the dispute and the parties themselves. Here, the partnership is based in Massachusetts.

Furthermore, the partnership agreement itself–including the buy-sell provision–is governed under Massachusetts law. Given this, a Florida appeals court held the husband could not pursue his claims in Florida unless he could demonstrate some sort of “minimal contacts” between this state and the partnership to justify invoking personal jurisdiction.

Need Advice on Protecting Your Family's Future?

At the Kuhn Law Firm, P.A., we can advise you on a number of options for helping you and your family minimize the burden of transferring property after your death.

Call us today at 239-333-4529 to schedule a free estate planning consultation with a member of our team.