Students Discuss Effects of Alcohol While Hypnotized

(U-WIRE) HUNTINGTON, W.Va. – Twelve student volunteers were hypnotized Tuesday night at Marshall University in the Hypnotic Intoxication program to discuss the effects of alcohol on the body.

Keith Karkut, hypnotist, started the program in the Don Morris room of the Memorial Student Center with a true-false quiz on alcohol and what one should do with a drunk person. A few of the false statements were that alcohol is a mood-altering stimulant, drinking a cup of coffee or taking a cold shower will cure a hangover and the most serious consequence of getting drunk is a hangover.

The true statements were that the effects of alcohol on the body are different for everyone and that men have more muscular tone than women. This muscle is made up of proteins which produce a higher metabolism toward alcohol.

Karkut introduced his hypnotic intoxication program to 12 volunteers in the audience. He explained that his program will get you drunk but you won’t have a bar tab or a hangover in the end. Volunteers relaxed by holding out their arms and pretending they were made of steel. Then they pretended to be watching a funny comedian on a big movie screen in front of them.

While under hypnosis, Karkut gave volunteers different names and when asked their names after opening their eyes, some replied by saying Godzilla, Mitsubishi or Betty.

Dance music was turned on and Karkut passed a bottle of water to each of the volunteers. Through hypnosis, he made them believe it was their favorite drink, only 10 times stronger than usual. Ten minutes went by and volunteers continued to chug away at bottle after bottle.

Freshman Jacob Powers ended up falling out of his chair onto the ground while mumbling to the audience. Sigma Alpha Epsilon member Jared Fredeking was asked to walk in a straight line but had tremendous difficulty. Fredeking was then asked to drink out of an empty bottle of water and after putting the bottle tip up to his mouth, his facial expressions showed that it was unbearable to take another sip.

“Even though there was no water in the bottle, the mind is so powerful that it makes you think differently,” Karkut said.

Hypnotized volunteer Kevin Ellenberg, executive member of Student Activities Programming Board, said, “I don’t remember anything. I’m just confused as to why everyone kept calling me Betty.”

Karkut ended by saying that two to three percent of college students will die from alcohol-related situations before they reach graduation and 70 people die of alcohol-related accidents every day.

19-Year-Old Student Runs for Mayor of Papillion, Neb.

(U-WIRE) OMAHA, Neb. – Yet another University of Nebraska-Omaha student is attempting to make his way into local politics.

Rich Portera, 19, a sophomore secondary education major, has filed to run for mayor of Papillion, Neb.

He is one of six candidates vying for the position. Others in the running include incumbent Donnie Brandt, as well as Papillion residents Gary Morris, Mike Riddle, Pete Goodman and James Blinn.

The primary, which will narrow down the field, will be held May 14. The top candidates will advance to the Nov. 5 general election. Whomever is elected will serve a four-year term.

Portera said he decided to run because of his concern for the current system. He said he’d also like to see more people his age involved in the city.

“I’d like to see the present and future city develop as I develop,” he said. “What happens now is going to affect my future.”

Portera, who was not old enough to vote in the last mayoral election, said Papillion has a weak government.If elected, Portera would like to see the office of mayor become a full-time position or would implement a full-time city manager.

He sees his age is a neutral issue in his campaign.

He said he knows some will see him as a child with no experience. He maintains this isn’t the case, however. Portera has followed the Papillion political scene closely, as his father is a former member of the city council.

“I’ve seen enough things,” he said, adding that he knows how things can go “around here.”

He does, however, plan to use his age as an advantage in winning the votes of the 18-to-24 age group.

“If I get 18 to 24, I can win the election,” he said.

He describes his theory about this as an “upside-down funnel.”

He said if he can get those in his own age group involved in politics, they can talk to their parents. Their parents would then talk to other older adults in the community and the funnel would take shape.

Portera believes the reason there are so many people running against Brandt is that they share his feelings that the city is headed down the wrong path.

He is not worried about losing out to the incumbent, whom he thinks does not have a strong backing among Papillion residents.

Last month, another UNO student filed to run for public office. Brad Allen, 22, a senior business economics major, filed against incumbent Nancy Thompson for the District 14 seat in the Nebraska State Legislature.

The primary for that race will also be held May 14.

Ohio State U. Gives Some Benefits to Same-Sex Partners

(U-WIRE) COLUMBUS, Ohio – Same-sex domestic partners of faculty and staff at Ohio State University are now eligible for certain employee benefits under a plan announced Tuesday by the university.

The plan allows domestic partners to enroll in employee discount programs, such as purchase plans offered by General Motors and Ford, and medicine discounts on alternative therapies.

However, OSU has not extended medical, dental or vision coverage to same-sex domestic partners, which would require approval by the Board of Trustees.

“Adding health insurance would increase the cost considerably, given the school’s tight budget,” said Nick Maul, director of benefits at OSU. “We’re doing things that are no cost to the university. We’re trying to find ways that will enable us to provide some services without increasing rates.”

The new program also allows domestic partners to have access to certain programs.

These include financial planning services, doctor referral for international travelers, child care services, confidential counseling and medical leave allowances without requiring OSU to pay any money.

Participants also will have the option of purchasing life insurance for dependents at the university’s group rate.

Maul said some of the benefits were made available last month, such as allowing a person to miss work if the partner is ill. Others will be implemented on a staggered basis starting in July, when the next enrollment period occurs.

OSU staff are pleased with the announcement.

“This is a very solid interim step that helps send a signal to our gay and lesbian faculty and staff. It says that we are very interested and that we are making some progress in this area,” said Larry Lewellen, associate vice president of Human Resources, to the Cleveland Plain Dealer.

Lewellen said benefits are available to married couples, but some are not available to domestic partners of unmarried, heterosexual couples.

OSU will join 164 public and private colleges and universities nationwide that offer some form of domestic partner benefits.

Carrie Marie Lymanstall contributed to this article.

Harvard Explores 6th Sense

By Sarah M. Seltzer

The Harvard Crimson

(U-WIRE) CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – Physics met psychics at Harvard Tuesday when two researchers presented findings they said could prove humans have psychic abilities – at least three seconds worth.

The research – which focused on the autonomic nervous system’s response to stimulus – shows that the human body might be hard-wired with a sixth sense to predict threatening events about three seconds in advance, according to the researchers, Edwin C. May and Joseph W. McMoneagle.

In the experiment, isolated subjects wore headphones and listened as a random generator triggered a second of white noise or a second of silence between intervals of 40 to 80 seconds.

The research showed that skin conductance – an indicator of nervous system activity – increased during a three-second period of time before the subjects heard the white noise.

McMoneagle offered the example of soldiers who stop just short of land mines – for no apparent reason – on battlefields as possible manifestations of this ability.

May said he hypothesizes there is a “pro-survival mechanism” that helps humans and animals avoid hazards every day. He attributes this ability to an “additional sensory system.”

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