Middle class poverty, USA: Women forced to sell their own hair, breast milk and eggs to make ends meet as economic recovery fails to raise wages

  • The top Google results for ‘I want to  sell my…’ have been ‘kidney,’ ‘eggs’ and ‘hair’ since 2011
  • Websites have sprung up that allow women  to post their hair and breast milk for sale online
  • Long locks of hair can fetch up to  $1,500
  • Breast milk can sell for $5 an ounce  online
  • Egg donations nets up to  $8,000

By  Michael Zennie

PUBLISHED: 18:25 EST, 15  October 2013 |  UPDATED: 18:31 EST, 15 October 2013

Thousands of women across the country are  turning their bodies into ATMs, selling their hair, eggs and even their breast  milk to make ends meet as the economic recovery fails to bring wages and job  opportunities back to pre-recession levels.

Many of the women who are auctioning off  pieces of themselves are middle-class mothers who are struggling to maintain the  same standard of living for their children five years after the biggest economic  crash since the Great Depression.

Online market places have sprung up, making  it easy for women to make up to $1,500 selling their locks and $5 an ounce for  breast milk.

Online marketplaces like Only the Breast have sprung up to allow women to sell their breast milk for up to $5 an ounce 

Online marketplaces like Only the Breast have sprung up  to allow women to sell their breast milk for up to $5 an ounce

 

The site buyandsellhair.com features hundreds of women, and a few men, who want to sell their locks 

The site buyandsellhair.com features hundreds of women,  and a few men, who want to sell their locks

 

Selling eggs, which is a much more  complicated and intrusive process, can net up to $8,000 per donation.

Bloomberg reports that since 2011, the top Google auto-completion results for ‘I want to  sell my…’ have included ‘hair,’ ‘eggs’ and ‘kidney.’

Google’s fill-in results reflect the most  popular searches by Google users.

‘The fact that people even explore it  indicates that there are still a lot of people worried about their financial  outlook,’ Nicholas Colas, who tracks economic indicators for ConvergEx Group,  told Bloomberg.

‘This is very much unlike every other  recovery that we’ve had. It’s going to be a slow-grinding, very frustrating  recovery.’

Selling kidneys is illegal in the United  States, though evidence suggests that black market organ sales exist. A  University of Chicago study suggested that kidneys could be worth more than  $15,200 each, if sales were legalized.

Egg donation, which is much more complicated and requires several trips to donation clinics, can bring $8,000 per donation 

Egg donation, which is much more complicated and  requires several trips to donation clinics, can bring $8,000 per  donation

 

April Hare, a 35-year-old mother of two who  has been out of work for two years, resorted to selling 18 inches of her auburn  hair to help support her family.

She told Bloomberg she cut off her long locks  and posted them on the website buyandsellhair.com for $1,000.

She had several responses within hours.

Hare, who has a four-month-old son and a  seven-year-old daughter, said she is also looking into selling her breast milk.  A similar site, onlythebreast.com, allows mothers to list their milk for sale  online. It can go for up to $5 an ounce.

‘These are tough times. The rich are getting  richer and everybody else is losing their jobs and their homes. It’s just  terrible,’ she said.

She previously worked as a sales manager  before losing her job in 2011.

Bridie MacDonald, from the wealthy Detroit  suburb of Farmington Hills, Michigan, cut off her red locks and posted them  online for $1,500 after she lost her job last month.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2462103/Women-forced-sell-hair-breast-milk-eggs-make-ends-meet-economic-recovery-fails-improve-wages.html#ixzz2hr26Gxqz Follow us: @MailOnline on Twitter | DailyMail on Facebook

What Exactly Is Inside Cypriot Banks? / Almost all Money

Published on Mar 27, 2013

March 27 (Bloomberg) — On today’s “Single Best Chart,” Scarlet Fu looks at assets inside Cypriot banks. She speaks on Bloomberg Television’s “Bloomberg Surveillance.” (Source: Bloomberg) — For more “Bloomberg Surveillance” videos: http://bloom.bg/LGz8Mc — Subscribe to Bloomberg on YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/Bloomberg

 

Wal-mart sales a ‘total disaster’ ” Where are all the customers? And where’s their money?”

Wal-mart sales a ‘total disaster’, say leaked emails

Wal-Mart has said sales this month have been a “total disaster”, according to leaked internal emails.

Walmart in Juarez Mexico

Shares in Wal-Mart fell 2.1pc on Friday, marking their biggest fall since mid-December Photo: Alamy

 

11:19PM GMT 15 Feb 2013

The retailer’s shares slid after Jerry Murray, vice president of finance and logistics, also told colleagues that it was “the worst start to a month I have seen in my ~7 years with the company”.

Wal-Mart, which owns Asda, had been expecting a boost to February sales from the Super Bowl and other factors including milder weather across the Atlantic.

January appears to have been little better, according to another email seen by Bloomberg.

On February 1, Cameron Geiger, senior vice president at Wal-Mart’s “US replenishment” division, said: “Have you ever had one of those weeks where your best- prepared plans weren’t good enough to accomplish everything you set out to do?

“Well, we just had one of those weeks here at Walmart US. Where are all the customers? And where’s their money?”

The emails shed light on the anxiety in the US retail sector as shoppers shoulder increases in payroll, or income, tax at an already difficult time for the economy.

Shares in Wal-Mart fell 2.1pc on Friday, marking their biggest fall since mid-December.

A spokesman for Wal-Mart said: “As with any organization, we often see internal communications that are not entirely accurate, that lack the proper context and represent individual opinions.”

The group will report its fourth-quarter results on February 21.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/newsbysector/retailandconsumer/9874419/Wal-mart-sales-a-total-disaster-say-leaked-emails.html

US software firm hacked for years after suing China

Original URL: http://www.theregister.co.uk/2012/11/29/solid_oak_china_hacked_three_years/

Solid Oak nearly went under after three years of persistent attack

By Phil Muncaster

Posted in Security, 29th November 2012 04:05 GMT

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A Californian software company which sued the Chinese government for pirating its flagship content filtering product has revealed how it was targeted by hackers from the People’s Republic for the three years of the resulting legal proceedings.

Santa Barbara-based Solid Oak Software filed the civil lawsuit against China after discovering thousands of lines of code from its parental filtering CYBERsitter had been lifted and used to develop the Green Dam Youth Escort – Chinese software which was originally intended to be rolled out nationally by the government.

Just 12 days after Solid Oak founder Brian Milburn went public with his intentions, the hackers began targeting his employees with a view to infiltrating the company, gleaning intelligence about the court case and disrupting sales as much as possible, Bloomberg [1] reported.

“It felt like they had a plan,” Milburn told the newswire. “If they could just put the company out of business, the lawsuit goes away. They didn’t need guys with guns or someone to break my kneecaps.”

The attackers made initial incursions with spyware hidden in malicious email attachments and were soon able to remotely control PCs and switch on webcams to spy on individuals. They also apparently went after Solid Oak’s law firm in the hope of lifting documents which they believed may have helped in the upcoming court case.

Solid Oak’s web and email servers were also targeted, frequently crashing several times a day, and the small family-run business dived into the red as customers looking to buy the software online were not able to complete their transactions thanks to some tinkering with the script that controlled payment processing, Bloomberg said.

Forensic investigators told the newswire that the malware and attack toolkits they found on Solid Oak’s network and servers were unique to Chinese hackers known as the Comment group – a gang fingered for attacks on Coca Cola and others [2] revealed earlier this month.

In the end Solid Oak survived by the skin of its teeth, with Milburn and his staff forced to share documents on webmail and Dropbox in an attempt to thwart their foes.

Within two months of a settlement in the case , the attacks reportedly stopped. ®

Eli Lilly and Zyprexa Under the Spotlight for criminal activity

2009 Report posted for filing

 

Reviewed by John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on June 14, 2009 Eli Lilly & Co.’s atypical antipsychotic medication, Zyprexa, was not only marketed to doctors for an unapproved, off-label use — the treatment of dementia in elderly patients — but it was done despite Lilly’s access and knowledge of at least seven studies that showed the drug was apparently ineffective for the treatment of dementia.

 

The studies also showed that the use of the drug resulted in “significantly” more deaths than patients taking placebo pills in the studies.

 

Eli Lilly plead guilty to federal charges in January 2009 for illegally marketing Zyprexa for off-label uses to older Americans from 1999 to 2001.

 

The latest Zyprexa revelation comes as Eli Lilly continues to fight in U.S. District Court in New York against claims brought against the company by pension plans and health care insurance companies seeking to get back money spent on purchasing Zyprexa for their customers. Lilly has settled numerous previous cases related to Zyprexa for approximately $2.62 billion, including a $615 million fine for the federal charge of marketing the drug for off-label uses.

 

Eli Lilly claims that the off-label marketing of Zyprexa for dementia in elderly patients ended in 2001. However, the groups suing Lilly claim that the drug manufacturer continued to promote Zyprexa to physicians treating elderly patients even the company claimed it had stopped, according to its own internal emails and documents.

 

According to the Bloomberg news agency, “The plaintiffs cite documents including a 2002 business plan calling for expanding prescriptions in off-label use. They also point to notes from Lilly sales representatives through 2003 recording efforts to press doctors to prescribe elderly patients Zyprexa for mood symptoms, irritability and insomnia.”

 

“Insurers and other so-called third-party payers contend Lilly should pay as much as $6.8 billion in damages for downplaying Zyprexa’s health risks, including excessive weight gain and the risk of contracting diabetes, and marketing the drug for unapproved uses to pump up profits,” Bloomberg further noted.

 

Notes written by Eli Lilly salespeople during their sales calls to doctors allegedly demonstrated their continued push to primary care physicians to prescribe Zyprexa for off-label, unapproved uses — something that is illegal for a drug company to do. As late as 2003, such notes indicated that salespeople were apparently still recommending Zyprexa for off-label uses such as helping elderly patients sleep, manage irritability, decrease hostility and improve unclear thinking — some of which are typical symptoms of dementia. Without using the word “dementia,” Lilly salespeople apparently continued to tout the benefits of Zyprexa for common dementia symptoms.

 

Side effects were, according to the latest unsealed documents, acknowledged, but minimized. According to Bloomberg, “‘Acknowledge weight gain but present it as a manageable side effect,” Lilly advised its sales force, according to the documents. “With most customers, we will continue to address the diabetes concern only when it arises,” the December 2001 document said. “Get back to selling!”’

 

The latest set of documents unsealed also showed that Lilly company employees wrote a number of the medical studies that demonstrated Zyprexa’s effectiveness. The studies were then submitted to medical journals and published under doctors’ names who agreed to put their names on the studies. The ghostwriting effort by Lilly was not publicly known before the unsealing of the court documents.

 

The seven studies that did not show Zyprexa’s effectiveness for dementia were not published in medical journals.

 

Zyprexa is Eli Lilly’s most profitable and lucrative drug, accounting for $4.7 billion in international sales in 2008 — accounting for over 30 percent of all atypical antipsychotics sales in the U.S.

 

Source: Bloomberg news agency and wire reports