Johnson & Johnson hit with record damages in California cancer case

Screen capture image, via YouTube.

Los Angeles jury has ordered Johnson & Johnson to pay damages of $417 million to a 62-year-old woman who blamed her ovarian cancer on years of using the company’s baby powder for feminine hygiene. It was the first California trial in the mushrooming legal battle over links between genital use of talc and ovarian cancer, and the award against J&J on Monday was by far the largest so far.

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News

From global warming to redistricting: Is Arnold back?

Former Calif. Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo, followed by French officials, at a 2014 meeting in Paris targeting climate change. (Photo: Frederic Legrand, COMEO, via Shutterstock)

It was ‘way back in 1984 when Arnold Schwarzenegger first uttered the movie catchwords “I’ll be back” in The Terminator. Today, Arnold is back. Sort of. Now, through his Terminate Gerrymandering Crowdpac, Schwarzenegger has committed to match donations to a fund that will help Common Cause participate in a case before the Supreme Court challenging maps drawn by Wisconsin Republicans. He’s into other things, as well.

Opinion

Energy, CCAs and the seniors’ cost burden

San Francisco skyline at sunset, as its electricity usage kicks in. (Photo: Joseph Sohm)

OPINION: A current law that is supposed to protect seniors and all electricity customers from paying for power that was purchased for other customers is not working. A broad coalition of senior groups and dozens of others is encouraging the Senate committee to discuss the fair allocation of costs for clean energy and other long-term contracts that were purchased to meet our state’s clean energy goals

News

Hepatitis C Virus outbreak among millennials

Laboratory testing of HCV. (Photo: Jarun Ontakrai, via Shutterstock)

Millennials haven’t inherited the best batch of goods from baby boomers. They got a housing crisis, a shaky job market, and some enormous student loans. But until recently, viral hepatitis was the burden of boomers alone to bear. Now, millennials are also facing an outbreak of Hepatitis C Virus (HCV). 

Opinion

Disputed legislation threatens hospital services

A hospital hallway and emergency room. (VILevi, via Shutterstock)

OPINION: AB 1250 would jeopardize access to care for millions of Californians by scrambling the current system, burying hospitals with new bureaucratic mandates, blizzards of paperwork and unnecessary red tape. Hospitals would be forced to divert limited financial and human resources from their mission of caring for patients.

News

Bullet train faces difficult journey

An artist's conception of the bullet train in operation. (Image, High Speed Rail Authority)

California’s bullet train may be in trouble again, as a recent court ruling and potential funding obstacles have plunged the transportation project into further uncertainty. The latest setbacks add to lingering questions over whether the $64 billion project can both meet its scheduled completion date and guarantee enough funding.

News

Stem cell agency eyes survival options

An illustration of stem cells used in research. (Photo: Billion Photos, via Shutterstock)

California’s $3 billion stem cell research agency, which is facing its financial demise in a few short years, has formed a team of its directors to tackle transition planning and examine possible alternatives, including ones that would extend its life. The first meeting of the group of directors is tentatively scheduled for Sept. 18. 

News

‘Green rush’ stalled in tiny Nipton?

Welcome to Nipton, a tiny California town in the Mojave Desert. (Photo: Screen capture, CNN)

It appears that a company’s plans to turn a remote San Bernardino County town into a marijuana tourism mecca may go up in smoke. Earlier this month, Arizona-based American Green announced it purchased the entire California town of Nipton for about $5 million to make it a hub of cannabis production mixed with bed-and-breakfast lodging and attractions like mineral baths.

Opinion

How did the air fare in cap-and-trade?

Air pollution over Suisun Bay as seen from Briones Regional Park, Contra Costa County. (Photo: Sundry Photography, via Shutterstock)

OPINION: The bills (AB 398 and AB 617) that Gov. Jerry Brown signed on July 25 and 26 represent the culmination of years of debate in the Capitol over global warming and air quality. Now that those bills have become law, what have we learned?

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