The Appeals Process in Florida

Generally, the losing party in a civil or criminal federal court has the right to appeal the decision to the United States Court of Appeals which is the next highest court . The appellate process consists of practices and rules which allow appellate courts to review trial court judgments. The appellate review performs numerous functions including developing the law, achieving uniformity across the courts, and correcting trial court errors. The appellate process focuses on several main themes such as how appeals are brought before the court, the requirements to reverse the lower court’s decision, and what judgments can be appealed. Federal appellate courts are governed by the Federal Rules of Appellate Procedure, whereas the State appellate courts are governed by their own set of state rules.
Civil Cases

In civil case, either side may appeal the verdict within a civil case
Criminal Cases

The defendant is allowed to appeal his or her criminal conviction, and/or sentence. However, the government is not allowed to appeal a “not guilty” verdict but is allowed to appeal the sentence.
What is an Appellant?

The appellant is the losing party who files the appeal to the higher court. He or she is allowed up to thirty (30) days to file an appeal and must prove to the Court of Appeals that the trial court made a legal error that negatively impacted the decision of the case.
What is an Appellee?

The Appellee is the opposing party who defends against the appeal. He or she will use the same procedures as the appellant, except the appellee’s argument within the brief will explain to the appeals court why the trial court’s decision is correct and why the decision should remain the same.
The Process

Initially, the appellant must file a notice of appeal which will include a copy of the final lower court’s decision, a brief stating the legal arguments, and why the decision is wrong and should be reversed or modified. Generally, the appellate lawyer will ignite this process for you. The body of the brief must explain the legal errors of the trial court and why the decision should be reversed. The appellant will also cite similar cases that will support his or her case within the brief. Once the Board of Appeals has received the notice of appeals, within ten (10) days a letter of acknowledgment, a copy of the appellate procedures, and advise on the next steps will be sent to the appellant. If the Board of Appeals does not meet the necessary conditions to file an appeal, or if more information is needed to make the determination, the Board will then notify both parties.

The Argument in the appellate court is almost always through written briefs. Few jurisdictions will allow for oral arguments. If an oral argument is selected for the case, it will be presented by lawyers from both parties. Each side will be given a short period of time to state their argument to the court. There will be a panel of three judges that will ask the lawyers questions, review the briefs, and original case. New evidence cannot be submitted. The judges panel will solely rule on existing case information and the written or oral brief. An appeal is not a new trial, yet it is an attempt to reverse a conviction or sentence handed down by the trial court. Third parties can also submit amicus curiae (“friend of the court”) briefs that may influence an appellate court’s decision.

A decision by the panel of judges will not occur immediately after the written or oral brief. Once the brief has concluded, the three-panel judge will each review the case then write a formal opinion of the court, which may be published in law books. If the vote is 2-1, the minority judge may choose to write a dissenting opinion stating his or her reasons for disagreeing. Writing this opinion may take up to several months. The court will then determine it’s court of opinion which may either: (1) uphold or affirm the lower court’s decision, therefore the verdict or sentence will remain the same, (2) reverse or overturn the lower court’s decision, therefore granting the appellant’s request, or (3) remand or send back the case to the trial court for a new trial or further action.
Common types of Legal Errors

Prejudicial Error – This type of error concern a mistake of the court or law procedures that caused substantial harm to the defendant. This type of error can include the judge making a mistake about the law, incorrect jury instructions, judge, jury, prosecution, or lawyer misconduct. To be accepted, the mistake must have harmed the defendant and he or she was given an unfair sentence based on prejudicial errors.

No Substantial Evidence – The appellant can ask the appellate court to determine if there was no substantial evidence that reasonably supported the trial court’s decision.
Harmless Errors

A harmless error is a ruling by a trial judge that, although mistaken, does not meet the burden for a losing party to reverse the original decision of the trier of fact on appeal, or to warrant a new trial. harmless error is an error by a judge during the course of a trial which an appellate court finds does not justify the reversal or modification of the lower court’s judgment at trial. Harmless errors may include a technical error which has no bearing on the outcome of the trial, or an error that was followed by a curative instruction (such as allowing testimony and then ordering it stricken and admonishing the jury to ignore it), and others. Often, an appeals court will find an error to be harmless because it is their determination that even though there were errors, the appealing party could not have won in the trial in any event. Harmless error is based upon a finding that the error was not significantly prejudicial to the appellant so as to affect the outcome of the case.

Normal Errors – The ordinary test for harmless error is whether the mistake in question affected the “substantial rights” of the defendant. If the error did not involve a constitutional right, the government must present a “fair assurance” that the error did not widely affect the verdict.

Constitutional Errors – Certain errors require that the prosecution unequivocally establishes “harmlessness.” If an error involves a constitutional right, the prosecution must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the error did not contribute to the guilty verdict.

Structural Errors – Rarely, errors such as structural errors will automatically require the appellate court to reverse the conviction. These errors include: depriving the defendant of legal representation, a biased trial judge presiding over the case, refusing to allow the defendant self-representation, denying the defendant the right to a public trial, or discriminatory exclusion of jurors based on being the same race as the defendant.
Harmful Sentencing Errors

Appellate courts respect the considerable discretion trial judges have during sentencing. However, a sentence can be appealed for harmful errors just as a conviction can be appealed for legal errors. An appeals court may modify or order the trial court to modify a sentence if harmful sentencing errors have occurred such as:

-the sentence being clearly excessive, compared to the charge

-enhanced because of facts the jury did not find true beyond a reasonable doubt,

-is based on invalid reasons such as a failed polygraph,

-were not followed by improper denial of a continuance, or

-was not preceded by a waiver of the right to legal representation.

Methamphetamine Possession Laws in Missouri

Missouri might not be the first State to come to mind when considering where to take a vacation with the family, but it does have the unfortunate distinction of being tops in one category – methamphetamine abuse. So great is the concern over crystal meth addiction, that the Federal government has instituted a task force which actively tracks twenty-eight States classified as being high intensity drug trafficking areas. (HIDA) The list of states include: California, Washington State, Texas, Missouri, Indiana, Michigan, Georgia, Maryland, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York, Utah, Montana, Wyoming, Colorado, Louisiana, Texas, Mississippi, Tennessee, Oregon, Ohio, Florida, Nevada, New Mexico, Alabama, Nebraska, W. Virginia and Kentucky.

Of the twenty-eight listed States, California and Missouri are rated number one and two respectively.The State of Missouri is the biggest surprise on the list, but records show that State local and Federal law enforcement agencies seize and destroy the largest amount of illegal methamphetamine from the mid-west state. Some have given Missouri the unofficial nickname “the meth capital of the world”.
Possession of Meth results in automatic arrest
Possession of Meth results in automatic arrest

Narcotics Annonymous

Possession Lawyer ASAP

Regardless of the street name used possession of “meth” “speed” or “ice” ends with a criminal arrest and serious drug charges. A drug possession lawyer is needed to guide the offender through the legal process. Possessing even a tiny amount of crystal amphetamine could lead to an automatic enforcement of 3 years in jail. Fortunately most local and State enforcement agencies realize that successfully completing a drug program has greater far reaching results than does a jail term.

A first time offender usually faces a misdemeanor charge and probation dependent on the successful completion of a drug treatment program. As is the course with all drug related charges, the local municipalities and State laws determine the limits and categories for meth possession. Low level or first time offenders can usually stay within the confines of State laws.

Drug Laws in MISSOURI
A list of Chapter 195 Missouri Drug Regulations. The numerous violations emphasize the need of a qualified attorney to sort through which laws apply to a defendant.

State and Federal Possession Laws

It has been estimated that the economic cost to State and local governments handling meth addiction costs from $16.2 billion to $48.3 billion. Being addicted to meth involves more than just the physical symptoms of addiction, often crime and criminal activity follow drug use which further impacts on the expenses of local law enforcement agencies. Agitation, confusion, violence, and paranoia are often associated with the abuse of this drug. Police officers are often called to assist out of control users.

In general terms, methamphetamine possession is against the law. It is classified as a Type A drug which can trigger an automatic jail sentence, if the court so desires. Arrests can range from possession for personal use, (perhaps ¼ gram of meth or under) a misdemeanor charge, to possession with intent to sell which crosses over to Federal law violations.

In California a person arrested with under half a gram will usually receive probation. In Florida a three year minimum sentence is required for possession of half a gram.
Drug Courts

Drug courts specialize in combining treatment and criminal justice. They recognize that the most effective method for breaking the cycle of drug addiction and crime is treatment and not imprisonment. The prosecutor, drug user, and the court work together to set up a treatment program that will break the cycle of addiction and restore a drug-free existence to the defendant.

The desired result is a completion of the program followed by a reduced charge or sentence, perhaps with complete dismissal of all charges in a best case scenario.

All fifty States are serious about meth addicts getting involved in a drug treatment program. Punishment is a deterrent but what is needed most is treatment that puts an end to the addict’s graving for the adrenaline rush and the long-lasting effect regular meth use provides.

Serious health issues come into play with regular use of methamphetamine. Dangers associated with overdosing are a constant threat. Personality disorders and brain damage can occur. It is important to undergo drug treatment to recover from this addiction. Agencies and organizations are eager and ready to help anyone with a meth problem.

Of course the arm of justice will come down hard on anyone charged with possession with the intent to distribute. The court also has no tolerance for anyone selling meth to juveniles. Setting up a meth lab endangers the lives and health of anyone unfortunate enough to live in close proximity of the lab, the Federal government takes a tough stand against offenders who maintain meth labs or even store any ingredients used to manufacture the drug.

Types of attorneys to be consulted are dependent upon charges faced and whether or not property is seized. Most professional searches center around the following terms.

Forfeiture defense attorney
Criminal defense attorney
Drug charge defense attorney
Meth crimes defense attorney

Attorneys will assist in Federal seizure issues and rights and need to be well aware of the penalties for Federal offenses. Stricter enforcement and automatic prison terms apply when Federal laws are broken. A life sentence can be issued for manufacturing and distributing large quantities of methamphetamine.

Assistance for the hard-core defendant will be minimal, but lawyers and the court systems want to help those who have not measured up to the destructive level of the drug supplier. While Mexican cartels have been credited with the majority of meth production, there still exists meth labs operating inside the USA which are targeted by law enforcement. As long as meth remains as addictive and inexpensive as it currently is, the need for knowledgeable drug possession attorneys will persist.

Public Urination in New York: A Lawyer’s Guide

The New York Public Urination Summons

There’s nothing quite like New York City traditions in the summertime: Catching some rays on Central Park’s Sheep Meadow, a burger and fries at the Shake Shack in Madison Park, the San Gennaro Festival in Little Italy, stumbling out of a bar at 4am and unfortunately, public urination.

For many Manhattan vendors, with the influx of tourists and return home of college students, business picks up in the summer. The same can be said of criminal defense lawyers, who are often called upon to represent residents and tourists alike for violations of New York City’s laws against marijuana possession, public intoxication, and public urination. In particular, public urination summons count for nearly half of all citations issued during the summer months.

For the uninitiated, here’s what you need to know about public urination laws in New York City:

You may not use the streets, alleyways or parks to relieve yourself, regardless of the lack of available restrooms;
If you are caught urinating, about to urinate, or after urinating in Manhattan, expect to receive a pink summons (or pink ticket) to appear in Criminal Court (either at 346 Broadway or 314 W. 54th Street); in Brooklyn, you may be summoned to appear at 88-94 Visitation Place; in Queens, public urination summonses are heard at 125-01 Queens Blvd. Here is a complete list of New York City Criminal Courts.
There are two laws that prohibit public urination: 153.09 is a Health Code violation and is treated as a misdemeanor; 16-118 is an Administrative Code violation and is treated as a violation;
Pleading guilty or being found guilty of a misdemeanor is likely to subject individuals to enhanced scrutiny in job searches, immigration proceedings, and obtaining a business license from New York State or New York City.
Pleading guilty or being found guilty of a violation may subject individuals to greater scrutiny in job searches, immigration proceedings, and obtaining a business license from New York State or New York City.
Under no circumstances should you plead guilty to any crime without speaking to a criminal defense attorney.
Most attorneys charge between $500-$1500 to handle a public urination case, depending on the number of appearances required to resolve the case; however, most competent lawyers should be able to dispense with the case at the initial appearance;
Very few criminal defense lawyers regularly handle these types of cases. For the best possible result, defendants should hire a lawyer who specifically handles public urination cases.
A highly competent public urination lawyer should be able to obtain an ACD or dismissal in many instances, and under no circumstances will allow a client to plead guilty to or be found guilty of a misdemeanor public urination.
The typical fine for one found guilty of a public urination violation is $50.
When considering whether to hire a lawyer for your public urination charge, one should also take into consideration that most lawyers do not require your appearance for these types of cases and therefore can save you from taking a day off of work, travel expenses, and sometimes spending hours waiting in a long security line (that is frequently wrapped around the building) and several more hours sitting on a wooden bench in a crowded courtroom.

The bottom line is that public urination is one of the most common ‘criminal’ activities in New York City and the NYPD enforces public urination laws aggressively. But no matter how ridiculous or absurd you think it is, being charged with a criminal misdemeanor is no joke. Take it as seriously as you take your livelihood.

Good luck!
Other Useful Articles and Links

How to Beat a NYC Public Urination Ticket or Summons
Ticketed for public urination in New York City? DON’T PLEAD GUILTY. Read this FREE guide to beating your New York public urination summons BEFORE going to Court!
New York Public Urination Lawyer – Fight Your NYC Public Urination Ticket!
Author of this article and New York Criminal Defense Lawyer Jason Stern handles a variety of criminal cases, including NYC public urination pink summons cases.

Extended Warranty For Autos Interrelated Knowledge Base

You see, we should be very thankful that we are born in this modern generation because of the existence of the Internet. With the Internet, every information (whether about extended warranty for autos or any other such as car buying, used car websites, repair warranties or even consumer reports extended warranty) can be found with ease on the Internet, with great articles like this.

So to feel more confident about electronic products without buying an extended warranty buy packages with a solid record of reliability to reduce the risks of a breakdown. Make absolute the product has a regular manufacturer’s warranty and understand it well. Using charge cards is as well advisable, as many credit cards find long warranty insurance to customers who purchase a product with such a credit cards.

When buying an long Automatic warranty, make it a rate to negotiate on its market prices with the car dealer. This is due to the fact that car dealers engender a great income with extended warranties, sometimes as much as the profit they make on a car. So don’t pay larger number of as opposed to two-thirds of the car dealer’s asking price. It is not necessary to buy the extended warranty immediately subsequent to buying a car, as you have twelve months’ while to buy a warranty. The extended warranty can be bought not only from the car dealer, but also from a credit union or auto insurance dealer.

If you transaction an extended car warranty, this does not mean that it ought to replace the median warranty. However, it is planning to give you a ensured level of coverage. While the chief purpose of purchasing an extended warranty is to lower the cost of vehicle repairs, there are a sum of additional features that may be added to the agreement. Before you sign the agreement, it is important for you to read and understand it.

Don’t forget that even if your immediate extended warranty for autos quest isn’t answered in this article, you could even take it further by doing a search on to get specific extended warranty for autos information.

The main motive you should consider purchasing a new car extended warranty for your new car is because the newer the car is, the cheaper is the warranty. The reasoning making that you can not keep the car longer as opposed to two years, or 24,000 miles of the manufacturer’s warranty, whichever comes first.

There are lots of expended car possessors who are in need of protection and coverage of a expended car warranty for their vehicles, and yet they do not look for a better coverage. That is why they end up hiring higher repair costs when their vehicles start to experience particular car problems. You might figure which it is a coincidence that your vehicle starts to breakdown when the previous warranty is running out. It is no coincidence, and that is why it is necessary to purchase a used car long warranty for your vehicle in case anything goes wrong.

Who is in effect handing out the warranty? Is it the manufacturer or a third party company.How long suffer they kept on in business? If they go out of boom for any reason, who will take over the contract in which case? Is overly simply mentioned in the warranty contract. It can also be a good idea to preventing with the coverage commissioner in the state where the primary office is located to see how reliable and trustworthy they are.

A lot of well-meaning people searching for extended warranty for autos also searched online for extended auto warranty company, repair warranty, and even warranty warranties.

Extended Autos Warranty Interrelated Guideline

If you are looking for information about extended autos warranty, you will find the below related article very helpful. It provides a refreshing perspective that is much related to extended autos warranty and in some manner related to automobile financing, windshield repair, automobile purchase or extended warranty services. It isn’t the same old kind of information that you will find elsewhere on the Internet relating to extended autos warranty.

Extended warranties can values up to fifty per cent of the purchase price. This once again depends on the sort of the product.This warranty is only for a selected limit of time from the date of purchase. Cars often come surrounded by a “3 decades or 36,000 miles” warranty. Other customer durables too generally do not have a warranty of other than a year.

Reading within the duration of the warranty coverage is one of the things you could in addition do prior to purchasing. Many warranties will cover the replacement of aspects who either break down or need to be replaced due to wear and tear. However, very few extended warranties plans to offer plans the current cover absolutely everything on a vehicle.

The assumption is often made that it is not necessary to purchase an extended car warranty while properties are still making use of the guarantee of the car company. However, the current assumption is not valid. You should purchase an long car warranty while you are still using the guarantee of the car company.

Don’t forget to realize that this article can cover information related to extended autos warranty but can still leave some stones unturned. Head on over to the search engines like for more specific extended autos warranty information.

Car extended warranty is a policy overly is bought with the intention of providing the car owner with selected insurance against any mechanical failures and breakdown to the new car. This policy has to be bought with its term being effective upon the expiry of the car manufacturer’s warranty. However, if you are one of persons who buys a new car and trades it in every two to three years, it is of no use getting a new car extended warranty as the factory warranty provides sufficient insurance for this moment period.

An long warranty is a policy that provides the car owner protection against any mechanical failures and breakdown of the car. One should buy an long warranty as it pays for mechanical repairs on the expiry of the manufacturer’s warranty. Used car long warranties are available; such a rates depend on the mileage of the car.

Who is in effect handing out the warranty? Is it the manufacturer or a third party company.How long suffer they kept on in business? If they go out of boom for any reason, who will take over the contract in which case? Is overly simply mentioned in the warranty contract. It can also be a good idea to preventing with the coverage commissioner in the state where the primary office is located to see how reliable and trustworthy they are.

For your information, we found that lots of people that were searching for extended autos warranty also searched online for extended warranty contracts, extended car warranty company, and even wynn extended warranty.

Automobile Extended Warranty Free Helpful Fac

Finding specific information about automobile extended warranty might not be easy but we have gathered very helpful and relevant information about the general subject matter, with the ultimate aim of helping you out. Even if your search is about other automobile extended warranty information, such as new car sale, used car report, car extended warranties or even extended auto warranty worth, this article will prove very helpful, to say the least.

Dealers market the long warranty as indemnity policy, which means they will replace the product in case of a breakdown once the standard warranty expires. In examples where wear and tear is not covered, this may not be worth the further cost. The company may simply not pay the claim, citing the reason of breakdown as improper maintenance or regular wear.

You should read the warranty contract first to find out precisely how is covered by the warranty. Doing the monumental exploring and comparison of diverse coverage is pertinent to finding the ideal warranty to buy. You do not want to pay hundreds of dollars of dollars, and subsequently end up with out overly your warranty will not cover your pivotal repairs.

If you do this, you can get a higher rate, because your car will hold a better total amount of coverage. If you wait, this can produce it tougher for you to get an extended car warranty. In most cases, the indemnity can just be extended up to 100,000 miles. There is not standard indemnity that is used by all the car companies on the market. The plan you get could vary from one company to the next.

Don’t forget that if this article hasn’t provided you with exact automobile extended warranty information, you can use any of the main search engines on the Internet, like, to find the exact automobile extended warranty information you need.

Most extended warranty policies undergo a lot of hidden clauses this need to be read and understood by the customers, before accepting them. A tiny bit of exploring on the company and the warranty helps the customer immensely.

If you prefer to buy a depleted car and then go for an extended warranty, it would be riskier. Get a check-up for the vehicle. Remember, you can never gamble on the health of the vehicle, a great deal if it has sharp looks and appeal. The CARFAX vehicle history report on the VIN large share can boon you. The mechanic’s certificate is a new one. The vehicle history news story in addition helps you to analyze the problems the vehicle had in the past.

Who is in effect handing out the warranty? Is it the manufacturer or a third party company.How long suffer they kept on in business? If they go out of boom for any reason, who will take over the contract in which case? Is overly simply mentioned in the warranty contract. It can also be a good idea to preventing with the coverage commissioner in the state where the primary office is located to see how reliable and trustworthy they are.

Many folks seeking online for articles related to automobile extended warranty also sought for articles about extended used car warranty company, car warranty quote, and even extended warranty prices.

New Jersey Criminal Lawyers

If you have been accused of a crime or think you might be, you should contact a criminal lawyer immediately. No matter how minor the charge, it’s always beneficial to contact a criminal lawyer. A criminal lawyer is one who specializes in handling criminal defense cases. The role of a criminal lawyer is to represent anyone who commits a crime in order to prove his or her innocence. A criminal lawyer with substantial experience and expertise in this field can work on strategies to cleverly cross-examine the prosecution witnesses to prove your innocence in the case. And, in case of extreme situations, an expert criminal lawyer can work out negotiations with the prosecution lawyer to arrange for a lesser charger or reduced sentence.

In order to have a strong defense, it’s very important to hire the right lawyer who has expertise and a proven track record in handling the crime of which you are accused. Only an expert lawyer can provide you with a reality check–a knowledgeable, objective perspective on the situation–and make you aware of what is most likely to happen, which can prove vital for the defendant in deciding whether to accept prosecutor’s offered bargain.

Criminal law in United States varies from state to state. Though a basic law code is followed all across U.S., it does differ a little across the states. For example, in New Jersey, you have a right to a speedy and public trial. Also, you have a right not to be convicted unless the State can prove each and every element of the offense with which you are charged. If you have encountered a situation where you need to seek the help of a criminal lawyer in New Jersey, it would always be to your advantage to go for a local lawyer practicing there.

It is unfortunately not always easy to find a good criminal defense lawyer. To find a good lawyer, it is always advisable to go by referrals from somebody who is familiar with the law practice. You may wish to sit through some public sessions of court while criminal cases are being argued. If you find a particular lawyer’s performance to be impressive, you may take note of the lawyer’s name and later contact the lawyer about the possibility of representing you. Each state and some major cities have organizations of criminal defense lawyers who can offer referral services or online directories. You can also browse through the yellow pages or online directories listing defense lawyers to find a good lawyer.

Article Source:

New Jersey DUI Defense

Drunk driving or Driving under Influence (DUI) is a serious offense under New Jersey Laws. A conviction entails financial penalties, jail terms, community service and loss of a driving license for a certain period of time.

DUI cases have increased by thousands all over the state. Because of the increasing severity in penalties, most of those charged by DUI must seek alternatives to pleading guilty. Anyone charged with a DUI needs a good attorney.

The Defense accepts that most people charged are guilty, which not always the case. The evidence against the offender brought by the police in the form of an ultra red breath analyzer is subject to serious errors. The breath analyzer is regarded as tried and evidence, but it can be inadequate and can easily be a point of attack by a defense counsel.

Also, ‘opinion’ is gathered by police officers through s field sobriety tests. These tests are supposed to reveal the agility and sobriety of drivers. But recent studies question the accuracy and scientific validity of these tests. The defense attorney can get a pre-trial ruling that these tests are not valid evidence.

The misconception is that drunk driving is a minor offense. A DUI conviction can have a severe financial, social and psychological hardship on the defendant. A DUI defense attorney must not leave any stone unturned in defending his client

There is a myth that DUI cases can’t be won, and often times attorneys advise their clients to plead guilty. It is best to refer the case to a jury trial. When jury trials are available, success rates of acquittal are amazingly better.

Finally, a DUI case is not like any other criminal case. In any criminal case, physical evidence is collected and preserved, subject to independent analysis by the defending attorney. But in case of DUI, breath tests do not have to be saved. There are also Sobriety Check points that are set up by police departments to check DUI violations.

Article Source:

How advertising influenced sinister scientists

This concept has been well documented by Graeme Donald in his book When the earth was flat…, which is a fabulous read, by the way.
How advertising influenced sinister scientists
© Nagy-Bagoly Arpad –
At about the same time as Vance Packard published his book The Hidden Persuaders in 1957, a market researcher named James Vicary burst onto Madison Avenue with a theory that would send Don Draper scurrying for a martini – with all the other Mad Men totally mesmerised right behind him.

The reason?

Vicary said he’d conducted experiments in a New Jersey cinema and had discovered “subliminal advertising”.

The advertising industry went ballistic. Vicary said he’d exposed 45,000 people with flash-images saying “Drink Coke” or “Eat popcorn”.

These flash-images were 1/3,000 of a second, which was too fast for the conscious brain to notice but were like headlines to the subliminal mind.

Because the brain had been influenced on an almost-hypnotic level, no defensive actions had been activated. The result, said Vicary, had been an increase in Coke sales (18%) and popcorn sales (57%).

Everyone agreed it made perfect sense.

Of course it took hardly any time at all before politicians started to become excited, too. Just imagine the possibilities!

As Graham Donald says, “there was a sudden and undignified scramble in the political arena as vast salaries were offered as incentives to entice opinion-makers and so-called Depth Men (psychological manipulators) away from their Madison Avenue desks and up to Capitol Hill.”

Of course, the CIA were very quick to pick up on the idea. “The CIA had spirited back to America numerous Nazi scientists and doctors, some of whom had used death camp inmates in various psychotropic and sensory-privation experiments in their own attempts to achieve total mind control. More than 30 war criminals were given new identities and employed in the set-up of the deadly sinister MK-Ultra programme, which used unwitting members of the public in a series of dangerous and, in some cases, lethal psychotropic experiments.”

Despite the best efforts of the ad industry, politicians, the CIA, scientists and many authors, nobody could make the concept work.

In fact, the experiments had never even taken place in that little New Jersey cinema!

In 1962, Vicary admitted it had all been a scam… there was no such thing as subliminal messaging. But it’s a funny world, because nobody believed him.

The more he shouted “scam!” The more they believed it.

Apparently, studies conducted in 2006 showed that, in America, 80% of people – including those who work in advertising or teach psychology – still believe in the sinister power of subliminal messaging.

And still, to this day, many broadcasters ban the production of this type of advertisement although (a) I don’t see how they can tell, and (b) I’m fairly sure that in South Africa, no agency makes them. And, even if they did, they don’t work anyway.

However, if someone ever suggests using this technique to promote your brand you might want to rather join Don Draper in the bar and put your ad budget to much better use.

Read my blog ( or see what other amazing things we do at

*Note that Bizcommunity staff and management do not necessarily share the views of its contributors – the opinions and statements expressed herein are solely those of the author.*

Treatment doe not kill TB completely

A new study has found evidence that – even after effective treatment – the bacteria causing tuberculosis (TB) can still be found in the lungs.
“Previous research has shown that the bacteria (mycobacterium tuberculosis) have a remarkable ability to survive, even in the presence of antibiotics, and that these persisting bacteria are very difficult to detect or to destroy,” says the lead researcher, Dr Stephanus Malherbe, from the Immunology Research Group (IRG) at Stellenbosch University’s faculty of medicine and health sciences (FMHS).

Treatment doe not kill TB completely
© Alexey Romanenko


The study tracked areas of inflammation in the lungs of 99 HIV-negative adults in Cape Town that were diagnosed with TB. PET/CT scans performed during and after treatment revealed that only 14% of patients had no remaining inflammation in the lung after TB treatment was completed.

In 86% of the patients, some lesions with active inflammation remained, and in roughly a third of patients, new or apparently exacerbated lesions were seen in spite of most patients being cured. Patients are considered cured after treatment if their symptoms improve and no TB bacteria are detected in sputum by standard tests.

In many of these patients traces of TB (in the form of bacterial mRNA) was also detected in the sputum and fluid obtained through lung washings. “mRNA is a type of nucleic acid formed during metabolism and decays rapidly. Its presence would suggest that there are still live bacteria in the lung after clinically successful treatment,” explains Malherbe.

“These new findings are surprising and point to a very important role for the body’s immune response to suppress or eradicate any residual live bacteria after treatment. This suggests that treatment aimed at boosting the immune response may improve treatment outcomes in the future,” says Malherbe.

A global killer

In spite of treatment programmes providing highly effective and lengthy regimens to the majority of TB patients, unfavourable outcomes are a problem. These include failed treatment, relapse after initial cure and lasting lung damage.

According to the World Health Organisation, TB caused 9,6m new cases and 1,5m deaths worldwide in 2014. The standard treatment period for TB is at least six months on various antibiotics, but this could be longer in cases of drug resistance, when the disease affects organs other than the lung, or when patients respond slowly to therapy.

There are worldwide efforts to improve tools to deal with TB, such as rapid diagnostic tests, new and effective drugs that will allow shorter treatment duration and vaccines.

The study was done in collaboration with researchers from the Catalysis Foundation of Health, Rutgers New Jersey Medical School, Stanford University School of Medicine, and the National Institutes of Health in the USA. The research was recently published in Nature Medicine.