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May 16, 2011 | By James S. Fell, Special to the Los Angeles Times
Whenever I hear about some amazing way to boost resting metabolism, my male-bovine-droppings detector goes berserk. Take the perennially popular one stating that 1 pound of muscle burns an extra 50 calories a day while at rest — so if you gain 10 pounds of muscle, your resting metabolic rate (RMR) soars by an extra 500 calories each day. Awesome! And also drivel. I'm more likely to believe bears use Porta-Potties and the pope is a Wiccan. Though its origins are uncertain, any number of fitness magazines have made the "50 calories per pound of muscle" statement.
April 26, 2014 | By Yvonne Villarreal
His is a name that has appeared in this publication's pages hundreds of times - as an author and as a subject. It's a name that calls up notions of the Latino struggle for civil rights and the radical Chicano movement in Los Angeles. It's also a name that initially made filmmaker Phillip Rodriguez groan when someone suggested the life behind the name as a subject for his next documentary. The legacy of former Los Angeles Times reporter and columnist Ruben Salazar has reached folklore heights since the journalist's suspicious death in 1970 at age 42. And therein lies Rodriguez's point of contention.
September 29, 2012
Re "What has Obama learned?," Opinion, Sept. 25 Jonah Goldberg asserts that President Obama was "easily among the least experienced major party nominees in U.S. history. " This assertion is dubious. Obama had more experience as an elected official before wining the presidency than many of his successful predecessors (nearly 11 years total - seven in the Illinois statehouse and almost four as a U.S. senator). Abraham Lincoln served eight years as an Illinois state representative and two years in the House before becoming president.
April 24, 2014 | By Martin Tsai
The documentary "Cesar's Last Fast" covers much the same ground as the dramatized "Cesar Chavez" released last month. Both center on the labor leader who in the 1960s helped to form the United Farm Workers union, organize the California grape workers' strike and foment a nationwide boycott of table grapes. Although "Cesar's Last Fast" extends the coverage by two decades, the same criticisms lodged against "Cesar Chavez" are applicable here: Richard Ray Perez's documentary concerns the myth more than the man. Perez has made a commendable effort rounding up archival footage, photographs and interviewees.
March 25, 2011 | By Baxter Holmes
It was the first inning, one runner aboard, the count at two balls and two strikes, and Tom Lovrich stared down the 19-year-old rookie batter. USC's junior ace didn't know much about him, except that he more than filled out his gray New York Yankees uniform. "He was a strong, country kid from Oklahoma," Lovrich said, recalling the legendary at-bat that took place 60 years ago Saturday. "Very strong. " Lovrich figured the rookie would chase something low and away for strike three, so the 6-foot-5 right-hander known as "Tall Tom" began his sidearm windup and fired.
December 14, 2006
Re "Holocaust deniers gather in Iran," Dec. 12 I'm not sure that Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad will be able to convincingly prove his contention that the Holocaust is a myth, but his conference has conclusively proved that any belief that anti-Semitism isn't more of a threat than ever before in the last 70 years is a myth. Hitler didn't host conferences with international attendance. RICHARD T. RASKIN Encino
May 27, 2007 | David Colker
The warning: When checking out of a hotel, never return the room key card! The myth: Computerized hotel key cards are routinely imprinted with guests' personal information, including names, addresses and credit card numbers. The truth: Hotel companies and law enforcement agencies have said repeatedly that such information isn't put on the cards. How it started: In 2003, a Pasadena police detective spread the warning without checking its veracity.
August 30, 2003
Congratulations, Tim Rutten, on being able to regurgitate the handful of known (and notably some dead) Republicans in Hollywood ("Left-Leaning Hollywood: A Myth Dies," Aug. 23). Their names drift so easily to mind because they are/were oddities in the otherwise overwhelmingly liberal landscape of Tinseltown. Didn't you notice that your list spans about 60 years with a result of only about 10 Republicans? I suspect that if you were to start reeling off a similarly known list of vocal liberals who inhabit this industry today, it would far exceed The Times' allowable space for publication.
February 7, 1988
Another media-inspired myth about homosexuality. Cheryl Crane--a "model" lesbian--wants us to believe that 2 1/2 years of sexual abuse and murdering one of her mother's suitors due to his abusive treatment of her mother didn't have anything to do with her sexual preference. Give me a break. Crane cops to the ludicrous pro-gay tenet that homosexuality is innate and has nothing to do with one's early environment. Such a rationale is clearly self-protective. Crane needn't deal with her tragically acquired ambivalence toward men; mama Lana in turn is relieved of facing the horrific effects of her own sexual brokenness upon Crane.
October 9, 2004
Reed JOHNSON gets it right regarding Che Guevara and his false myth ["Heroes: Lionized, Supersized," Oct. 4]. While his beliefs were somewhat different from those of Osama bin Laden, both men caused a lot of harm and carried a lot of hate (Bin Laden still does). Like Bin Laden, Guevara was a savage ideologue for whom life was worth nothing if you were on the side of the "imperialists." Their methods are similar in that they both killed countless without legal process, all in the name of "revolutionary justice."
April 10, 2014 | By Stefan Halper and Lezlee Brown Halper
Beijing has no shortage of issues to confront. There's the South China Sea, uncontrollable corruption, a slowing economy and factional disputes within the party and military. But Chinese officials also face one of the most difficult challenges in modern statecraft: how to conquer a myth. Despite China's attempts to dislodge its mythic appeal, Tibet as Shangri-La seems firmly set in the world's imagination. The once-independent nation, set high on a broad plateau adjacent to the Himalayas, is a worldwide symbol of mystery, aspiration, spirituality and possibility.
April 3, 2014 | By Mark Z. Barabak
There was - if not exactly dancing in the streets - a small frisson of excitement surging through half a dozen of America's great cities Wednesday as word emerged that six finalists had been chosen as the possible site of the 2016 Republican National Convention. They are, in impartially alphabetic order: Cincinnati, Cleveland, Dallas, Denver, Kansas City and Las Vegas. Two cities were eliminated from consideration by the party's site selection committee: Columbus, Ohio, and Phoenix, the latter, doubtless, to the dismay of sun worshippers who savored nothing more than the prospect of baking in the Sonoran Desert's 120-degree summer heat.
March 10, 2014 | By Christopher Knight
Myths die hard. Especially creation myths. Messing with the symbolic origins of a world isn't something to be undertaken lightly. Jackson Pollock's mammoth 1943 painting "Mural" - nearly 8 feet high, 20 feet wide and covered edge-to-edge with rhythmic, Matisse-like linear arabesques, muscular abstract shapes and piercing voids, all of which he likened to a frenzied mustang stampede - was something entirely new for American art. The great painting represents...
February 26, 2014 | By Steven Zeitchik
Among the 25 or so awards to be handed out at Sunday's Oscars will be the prize for documentary short. One of the less recognized categories at the annual ceremony, the doc short field this year contains a certain newsworthiness because of the inclusion of one nominee, "The Lady in Number 6," about Alice-Herz Sommer, a pianist who was known for years as the oldest living Holocaust survivor. Herz-Sommer died several days ago at the age of 110, thrusting into the headlines a film and category few might have otherwise talked about.
February 17, 2014 | By Karin Klein
It's been snowing in the Eastern United States like nobody's business. Crazy, wild cold and snowstorms. Predicting the weather might be hard, but predicting that extreme cold weather will produce a lot of hot air from climate deniers is easy. In fact, the number of myths floating around about climate change is pretty extensive, and I thought it might be helpful to address them, one by one, over the course of the year. For today, though, snow and cold are on people's minds. And that means plenty of people saying that this is strong evidence, if not downright proof, that the planet is not heating up. There's an elegant, if not complete, counterargument that comes via MIT's Knight Science Journalism Tracker, one of my favorite daily blog reads.
February 17, 2014 | By Christopher Knight, Times art critic
The little town of Dixon, Ill., has two claims to fame. First, it's the self-proclaimed Petunia Capital of Illinois. And second, it's the boyhood home of Ronald Reagan, 40th president of the United States. Presidents (and petunias) are no doubt good for tourism, which is probably why the town has decided to erect another bronze statue - its third - to Reagan. This one is planned for Lowell Park, just north of the Dixon Correctional Center, the state's largest medium security facility.
September 21, 2012 | By Brian Cronin
BASEBALL URBAN LEGEND : Walter Johnson reenacted a mythical George Washington coin toss. Parson Weems' "A History of the Life and Death, Virtues and Exploits of General George Washington" invented what is perhaps the most famous George Washington anecdote, the tale of young George confessing to cutting down a cherry tree despite knowing that he would most likely be punished severely for his actions. However, Weems also invented a few other Washington anecdotes, including the time young George threw a silver dollar (since they didn't actually have silver dollars, it "must" have been a piece of slate the size of a silver dollar)
October 22, 2013 | By Michael Hiltzik
Tuesday's tepid brew of jobs data , delayed more than two weeks by the government shutdown, wasn't worth waiting for. It shows an increase in total nonfarm employment by 148,000 in September over August, which is consistent with economic growth crawling along in second gear. The report's most notable nugget is the change in part-time work. Over the last month the number of workers in part-time jobs for economic reasons--slack demand, cutbacks in hours--has remained stable. Over the last year, however, it has fallen by 681,000.
February 17, 2014 | By David Horsey
Especially when it comes to economic policy, too many politicians are motivated by myths more than by facts. A prime example: the myth of the job creators. Republicans, such as Speaker of the House John Boehner, talk of job creators in reverent, worshipful terms. In their vision of how the world works, it is these brave titans of capitalism who, with no help from anyone else, build the companies that create jobs for American workers. To Boehner and his party, anything that inhibits job creators in their endeavors - taxes, environmental laws, financial regulations - is a job killer.
February 11, 2014 | By Kevin Baxter
COLUMBIA, Mo. - Craig Kuligowski heard the words, but at first they didn't register. In nearly three decades in college football, the University of Missouri defensive line coach had come to view summer team-building sessions as a typically uneventful training camp exercise. So he wasn't expecting different on a sweltering day last August when he gathered 15 players in a nondescript, windowless meeting room on the first floor of the Mizzou Athletic Training Complex. There, beneath seven black-and-gold placards professing an adherence to teamwork, camaraderie and character, one of the players tested whether those were core values or just empty words.
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