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Latest News - PAINT ROCK ALABAMA

The Celebrity Dumbing Down of Protest Culture


So it was last week in Selma, Alabama.” In March 1985 ...
Yet the problems persisted. Paint-by-numbers rock ‘n’ roll activism dissipated energy and created artificial feelings of self-satisfaction that squelched more serious initiatives.

The mnemonics of geography


Al Gore had not yet invented the Internet ...
I had a small map, paper, glue, some jars of paint, a couple of old paint brushes and a 3’ x 4’ piece of lightweight plywood. I was in hog heaven — completely engrossed in making this map that would ...

Al Pacino channels his inner rock star in 'Danny Collin'


Oscar and Tony winning actor Al Pacino has played a number of roles in his long and ...
Of course, the scene was pure joy for Pacino, who got to live out a secret fantasy of being a rock star, if only for a brief moment. At 75, the actor still appears ...

Paint Rock to abolish municipal court system


PAINT ROCK, Alabama -- The Paint Rock town council voted 4-1 in favor of disbanding its municipal court system Tuesday night, according to AL.com's news partner, WHNT News 19. Police Chief Billy Wilson and Sgt. Mark Adams resigned moments before the ...

The colorful canvas of Alabama's Paint Rock Valley (photos)


PAINT ROCK VALLEY, Alabama – Paint Rock Valley has an identity crisis, but not of its own making. The Valley, a 30-mile area made up of several tiny communities off Alabama Highway 65, is often confused with the tiny burg of Paint Rock, located several ...

Alabama fans paint ‘Go To Hell TN’ on Tennessee’s ‘The Rock’ (Photo)


"The Rock" at Tennessee has been a forum ...
in all six contests since Nick Saban was hired by Alabama in 2007. They’ll look to buck the recent trend and get some revenge for these Alabama paint bandits on Saturday at 3:30 in Tuscaloosa.

PHOTO: Alabama fans paint 'The Rock' at Tennessee


It's "Third Saturday in October" week between Alabama and Tennessee, the bitter SEC rivals who'll square off in Tuscaloosa this Saturday (3:30 p.m., CBS). And short of kidnapping Smokey, it's hard to think of a better rivalry week prank from Tide fans than ...

Paint Rock River watershed in Southeast Tennessee proposed as wildlife refuge


The Paint Rock River watershed, which flows through Alabama and Tennessee, was highlighted for action in 2012 as part of the Obama administration’s America’s Great Outdoors Report, an initiative to conserve outdoor spaces that power the nation's ...

Paint Rock Valley Lodge and Retreat: Hidden Alabama treasure


Eddie and Vivian Prince opened the Paint Rock Valley Lodge and Retreat in 1994. Many of their collections came from an old store they had. There's a game room and meeting rooms. And the lodge is replicated with rooms that pay homage to the past. "This is ...

Paint Rock, Alabama Vacation Rentals


Paint Rock, Alabama offers great vacation house rental and home rental-by-owner deals for the knowledgeable traveler. No matter what budget or level of comfort you seek in your holiday to Paint Rock, AL, there's surely a great local vacation home rental ...

Today’s apps gone free: Musical Paint, Geography Duel, Retromatic and more


Paint music, test your geography knowledge, and go retro with todays collection of apps and games. All app prices are subject to change at any time and without notice regardless of stated free duratio…

The Subtext of Names in 10x16


drsilverfish: I’ve been thinking about the name of Sister Mathias in “Paint it Black” - why is she called by her surname throughout, a surname which is a masculine first name?* [* As gemwrites  daemon…

A to Z: “Paint it Black” Began as a ‘Comedy’


By Matt Dolloff (@mattdolloff) “Paint it Black” wasn’t supposed to be so dark. Even though the Rolling Stones staple is a rollicking blues romp, the lyrics concern a funeral for a friend of Mick Jagg…

The Subtext of Names in 10x16


sandraugiga: drsilverfish: I’ve been thinking about the name of Sister Mathias in “Paint it Black” - why is she called by her surname throughout, a surname which is a masculine first name?* [* As gemw…

The Subtext of Names in 10x16


I’ve been thinking about the name of Sister Mathias in “Paint it Black” - why is she called by her surname throughout, a surname which is a masculine first name?* [* As gemwrites  daemon-et-angelus-d o…

Final Score: Spurs uneven but solid in 94-76 win


The Spurs again started off hot against the Dallas Mavericks, but saw their 21 point lead get to within 4 points before reasserting themselves for the big win. The Mavericks have had two days off sin…

A Jolt For The Stones, Soundgarden Hit #1, HBD Steven Tyler: This Day In Classic Rock [Videos]


The Beatles played the Casbah Coffee Club in Liverpool tonight in 1961, their last show in their hometown for a while as the next day they were headed to Hamburg for the second time. Proprietor Mona B…

Big Pooh & Apollo Brown – Words Paint Pictures


We all know a picture paints a thousand words, but how may words does it take to paint a picture? Big Pooh releases his debut album on Mello Music Group to achieve just that. Normally accustomed to li…

Final Score: Spurs absolutely dominant in 130-91 win over Thunder


On a SEGABABA after falling to the Dallas Mavericks, the Spurs came out strong against the Thunder and only improved as the game went on, winning 130-91. What  difference a day makes. The San Anton…

Stones Paint It Black, Manson Puts Out A Record, Slowhand Gets His Third: This Day In Classic Rock [Videos]


The Rolling Stones were in Hollywood today in 1966, starting in on their 10th single Paint It, Black. The comma was added by a proofreader at Decca Records, for the record. With lyrics credited to Mic…




SPECIAL INFORMATION FOR PAINT ROCK

Advices to people with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) in PAINT ROCK ALABAMA

What is irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)?

Irritable bowel syndrome* (IBS) is a functional gastrointestinal (GI) disorder, meaning that the symptoms are caused by changes in how the GI tract works. The GI tract is a series of hollow organs joined in a long, twisting tube from the mouth to the anus—the opening where stool leaves your body. Food is digested, or broken down, in the GI tract.

The organs of the GI tract

*See the Pronunciation Guide for tips on how to say words in bold type.

IBS is a group of symptoms that occur together, not a disease. Symptoms can come and go repeatedly without signs of damage to the GI tract.

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What are the symptoms of IBS?

The most common symptoms of IBS include pain or discomfort in your abdomen—the area between your chest and hips—and changes in your bowel habits. The pain or discomfort of IBS may be reported as cramping and

  • starts when you have bowel movements more or less often than usual
  • starts when your stool appears looser and more watery or harder and more lumpy than usual
  • goes away after a bowel movement

The changes in bowel habits with IBS may be diarrhea, constipation, or both.

Symptoms of diarrhea are

  • passing stools three or more times a day
  • having loose, watery stools
  • feeling an urgent need to have a bowel movement

Symptoms of constipation are

  • passing fewer than three stools in a week
  • having hard, dry stools
  • straining to have a bowel movement

Some people with IBS have only diarrhea or only constipation. Some people have symptoms of both diarrhea and constipation or have diarrhea sometimes and constipation other times. People often have symptoms after eating a meal.

Other symptoms of IBS are

  • whitish mucus—a clear liquid made by the intestines—in the stool
  • a swollen or bloated abdomen
  • the feeling that you haven’t finished a bowel movement

Women with IBS often have more symptoms during their menstrual periods.

IBS is a chronic disorder, meaning it lasts a long time, often years. However, the symptoms may come and go. You may have IBS if

  • you have had symptoms at least three times a month for the past 3 months
  • your symptoms first started at least 6 months ago

While IBS can be painful, it doesn’t lead to other health problems or damage the GI tract.

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What causes IBS?

Doctors are not sure what causes IBS. Researchers are studying the following possible causes of IBS:

  • Brain-gut signal problems. Signals between your brain and the nerves of your gut, or small and large intestines, control how your gut works. Problems with brain-gut signals may cause IBS symptoms, such as changes in your bowel habits and pain or discomfort.
  • Colon muscle problems. The muscles of your colon, part of your large intestine, may not work normally. The muscles may contract, or tighten, too much. These contractions may move stool through your gut too quickly, causing cramping and diarrhea during or shortly after a meal, or slow the movement of stool, causing constipation.
  • Sensitive nerves. The nerves in your gut may be extra sensitive, causing you to feel more pain or discomfort than normal when gas or stool is in the gut.
  • Mental health issues. Psychological, or mental health, issues such as anxiety or depression may be related to IBS in some people. Stress can make the nerves of your gut more sensitive, causing more discomfort and emotional distress.
  • Infections. A bacterial infection in the GI tract may cause some people to develop IBS.
  • Small intestinal bacterial overgrowth. Normally, few bacteria live in the small intestine. Small intestinal bacterial overgrowth is an increase in the number or a change in the type of bacteria in the small intestine. These bacteria can produce extra gas and may also cause diarrhea and weight loss. Some researchers believe small intestinal bacterial overgrowth may lead to IBS; however, more research is needed to show a link between the two conditions.
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How is IBS diagnosed?

Your doctor may be able to diagnose IBS based on your symptoms. Your doctor may not need to do medical tests or may do a limited number of tests.

Your doctor will ask about your

  • medical history
  • eating habits
  • medicine use

Your doctor will look for a certain pattern in your symptoms. Your doctor can diagnose IBS by using symptom-based standards such as the Rome criteria. Based on the Rome criteria, IBS may be diagnosed if

  • your symptoms started at least 6 months ago
  • you have had abdominal pain or discomfort at least three times a month for the past 3 months
  • your abdominal pain or discomfort has two or three of the following features:
    • Your pain or discomfort improves after a bowel movement.
    • When your pain or discomfort starts, you notice a change in how often you have a bowel movement.
    • When your pain or discomfort starts, you notice a change in the way your stools look.

Your doctor will also conduct a physical exam and may perform blood tests to make sure you don’t have other health problems. IBS can have the same symptoms as other health problems, so more tests may be needed. If any blood tests suggest you may have another health problem, your doctor might also perform the following tests:

  • Stool test. A stool test is used to check stool for blood or parasites, which are tiny organisms found in contaminated food or water. Your doctor will give you a container for catching and storing the stool. You will return the stool sample to your doctor or a commercial facility. The sample will be sent to a lab to check for blood or parasites. Your doctor may also check for blood in stool by examining your rectum—the lower end of the large intestine leading to the anus—during your physical exam.
  • Flexible sigmoidoscopy. Flexible sigmoidoscopy is used to look inside your rectum and lower colon. This test is used to look inside the rectum and lower colon. The test is performed at a hospital or an outpatient center by a gastroenterologist—a doctor who specializes in digestive diseases. Anesthesia is usually not needed. Your doctor will give you written bowel prep instructions to follow at home before the test. You may need to follow a clear liquid diet for 1 to 3 days before the test. You may also need a laxative or enema the night before the test. You may also have one or more enemas about 2 hours before the procedure.

    For the test, you will lie on a table while the doctor inserts a flexible tube into your anus. A small camera on the tube sends a video image of the intestinal lining to a computer screen. The test can show problems in the rectum or lower colon that may be causing your symptoms.

    You can usually go back to your normal diet after the test, though you may have cramping or bloating during the first hour after the test.
  • Colonoscopy. Colonoscopy is used to look inside your rectum and entire colon. The test is performed at a hospital or an outpatient center by a gastroenterologist. You’ll be given a light sedative and possibly pain medicine to help you relax. Your doctor will give you written bowel prep instructions to follow at home before the test. You may need to follow a clear liquid diet for 1 to 3 days before the test. You may need to take laxatives and enemas the evening before the test.

    For the test, you will lie on a table while the doctor inserts a flexible tube into your anus. A small camera on the tube sends a video image of the intestinal lining to a computer screen. The test can show problems in your colon that may be causing your symptoms.

    Cramping or bloating may occur during the first hour after the test. Driving is not permitted for 24 hours after the test so that the sedative can wear off. Before the appointment, you should make plans for a ride home. By the next day, you should fully recover and go back to your normal diet.
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How is IBS treated?

Irritable bowel syndrome is treated by relieving symptoms through

  • changes in eating, diet, and nutrition
  • medicine
  • probiotics
  • psychological therapy

You may have to try a few treatments to see what works best for you. Your doctor can help you find the right treatment plan.

[Top]

Eating, Diet, and Nutrition

Eating large meals can cause cramping and diarrhea in some people with IBS. If you experience these symptoms, try to change your eating patterns by eating four or five small meals a day.

Certain foods or drinks may make symptoms worse, such as

  • foods high in fat
  • some milk products
  • drinks with alcohol or caffeine
  • drinks with large amounts of artificial sweeteners, which are used in place of sugar
  • beans, cabbage, and other foods that may cause gas

To find out if certain foods trigger your symptoms, keep a diary and track

  • what you eat during the day
  • what symptoms you have
  • when symptoms occur

Take your notes to your doctor and talk about which foods seem to make your symptoms worse. You may need to avoid these foods or eat less of them.

Fiber may improve constipation symptoms caused by IBS because it makes stool soft and easier to pass. Fiber is found in foods such as whole-grain breads and cereals, beans, fruits, and vegetables. The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics recommends that adults consume 21 to 38 grams of fiber a day.

While fiber may help constipation, it may not be enough to treat the abdominal discomfort or pain of IBS. In fact, some people with IBS may feel a bit more abdominal discomfort after adding more fiber to their diet. Add foods with fiber a little at a time to let your body get used to them. Too much fiber at once can cause gas, which can trigger symptoms in people with IBS.

[Top]

Medicine

Your doctor may give you medicine help relieve symptoms. Follow your doctor’s instructions when you use medicine to treat IBS. Talk with your doctor about possible side effects and what to do if you have them.

These medicines can lessen the symptoms of IBS:

  • Laxatives treat constipation. Many kinds of laxatives are available. Your doctor can help you find the right laxative for you.
  • Loperamide (Imodium) treats diarrhea.
  • Antispasmodics help reduce muscle spasms in the intestines and help ease abdominal pain.
  • Antidepressants in low doses can help relieve IBS symptoms.
  • Lubiprostone (Amitiza) is prescribed for people who have IBS with constipation.
  • Linaclotide (Linzess) is also prescribed for people who have IBS with constipation.

The antibiotic rifaximin can reduce bloating by treating small intestinal bacterial overgrowth; however, scientists are still debating the use of antibiotics to treat IBS and more research is needed.

Probiotics

Probiotics are live microorganisms—tiny organisms that can be seen only with a microscope. These microorganisms, most often bacteria, are like the microorganisms normally found in your GI tract. Studies have found that probiotics taken in large enough amounts improve symptoms of IBS; however, more research is needed. Probiotics can be found in dietary supplements, such as capsules, tablets, and powders, and in some foods, such as yogurt. Talk with your doctor before using probiotics, supplements, or any other complementary or alternative medical treatment. Read more at www.nccam.nih.gov/health/probiotics.

Psychological Therapy

Psychological therapy can help improve IBS symptoms.

  • Talk therapy. Talk therapy may reduce stress and improve IBS symptoms. Two types of talk therapy used to treat IBS are cognitive behavioral therapy and psychodynamic, or interpersonal, therapy. Cognitive behavioral therapy focuses on your thoughts and actions. Psychodynamic therapy focuses on how your emotions affect your IBS symptoms.
  • Gut-directed hypnotherapy. In hypnotherapy, a therapist may help relax the muscles in your colon by putting you into a trancelike state.
  • Mindfulness training. Mindfulness training can teach you to focus your attention on sensations occurring at the moment and to avoid catastrophizing, or worrying about the meaning of those sensations.
[Top]

Does stress cause IBS?

Although stress does not cause IBS, if you already have IBS, stress can make your symptoms worse. In addition, simply having IBS symptoms can produce stress.

Learning to reduce stress can help improve IBS. With less stress, you may find you have less cramping and pain. You may also find it easier to manage your symptoms.

Meditation, exercise, hypnosis, and counseling may help lessen IBS symptoms. Getting enough sleep and changing life situations to make them less stressful may also help. You may need to try different activities to see what works best for you.

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Points to Remember

  • Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is a functional gastrointestinal (GI) disorder, meaning symptoms are caused by changes in how the GI tract works.
  • IBS is a group of symptoms that occur together, not a disease. Symptoms can come and go repeatedly without signs of damage to the GI tract.
  • The most common symptoms of IBS include pain or discomfort in your abdomen—the area between your chest and hips—and changes in your bowel habits.
  • While IBS can be painful, it doesn’t lead to other health problems or damage the GI tract.
  • Doctors are not sure what causes IBS. Researchers are studying the following possible causes of IBS:
    • brain-gut signal problems
    • colon muscle problems
    • sensitive nerves
    • mental health issues
    • infections
    • small intestinal bacterial overgrowth
  • Your doctor may be able to diagnose IBS based on your symptoms. Your doctor may not need to do medical tests or may do a limited number of tests.
  • IBS is treated by relieving symptoms through
    • changes in eating, diet, and nutrition
    • medicine
    • probiotics
    • psychological therapy
  • Although stress does not cause IBS, if you already have IBS, stress can make your symptoms worse.
[Top]

Hope through Research

The National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases’ (NIDDK’s) pision of Digestive Diseases and Nutrition conducts and supports basic and clinical research into many digestive disorders.

Clinical trials are research studies involving people. Clinical trials look at safe and effective new ways to prevent, detect, or treat disease. Researchers also use clinical trials to look at other aspects of care, such as improving the quality of life for people with chronic illnesses. To learn more about clinical trials, why they matter, and how to participate, visit the NIH Clinical Research Trials and You website at www.nih.gov/health/clinicaltrials. For information about current studies, visit www.ClinicalTrials.gov.

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Pronunciation Guide

abdomen (AB-doh-men)

abdominal (ab-DOM-ih-nuhl)

antidepressants (AN-tee-dee-PRESS-uhnts)

antispasmodics (AN-tee-spaz-MOD-iks)

anus (AY-nuhss)

chronic (KRON-ik)

cognitive (KOG-nih-tiv)

colon (KOH-lon)

colonoscopy (KOH-lon-OSS-kuh-pee)

constipation (KON-stih-PAY-shuhn)

diarrhea (DY-uh-REE-uh)

enema (EN-uh-muh)

flexible sigmoidoscopy (FLEK-suh-buhl) (SIG-moy-DOSS-kuh-pee)

functional (FUHNK-shuhn-uhl)

gastroenterologist (GASS-troh-EN-tur-OL-uh-jist)

gastrointestinal (GASS-troh-in-TESS-tin-uhl)

hypnotherapy (HIP-noh-THAIR-uh-pee)

interpersonal (IN-tur-PUR-suhn-uhl)

intestines (in-TESS-tinz)

irritable bowel syndrome (IHR-ih-tuh-buhl) (boul) (SIN-drohm)

laxative (LAK-suh-tiv)

mucus (MYOO-kuhss)

probiotics (PROH-by-OT-iks)

psychodynamic (SY-koh-dy-NAM-ik)

psychological (SY-koh-LOJ-ih-kuhl)

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For More Information

American Neurogastroenterology and Motility Society
45685 Harmony Lane
Belleville, MI 48111
Phone: 734–699–1130
Fax: 734–699–1136
Email: admin@motilitysociety.org
Internet: www.motilitysociety.org

International Foundation for Functional Gastrointestinal Disorders
700 West Virginia Street, Suite 201
Milwaukee, WI 53204
Phone: 1–888–964–2001 or 414–964–1799
Fax: 414–964–7176
Email: iffgd@iffgd.org
Internet: www.iffgd.org

Rome Foundation, Inc.
P.O. Box 6524
Raleigh, NC 27628
Phone: 919–539–3051
Fax: 919–900–7646
Email: mpickard@theromefoundation.org
Internet: www.romecriteria.org

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Acknowledgments

Publications produced by the Clearinghouse are carefully reviewed by both NIDDK scientists and outside experts. This publication was reviewed by Douglas A. Drossman, M.D., University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Thank you also to the Salvation Army, SE Corps, Washington, D.C., for facilitating field-testing of the original version of this publication.

The U.S. Government does not endorse or favor any specific commercial product or company. Trade, proprietary, or company names appearing in this document are used only because they are considered necessary in the context of the information provided. If a product is not mentioned, the omission does not mean or imply that the product is unsatisfactory.

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National Digestive Diseases Information Clearinghouse

2 Information Way
Bethesda, MD 20892–3570
Phone: 1–800–891–5389
TTY: 1–866–569–1162
Fax: 703–738–4929
Email: nddic@info.niddk.nih.gov
Internet: www.digestive.niddk.nih.gov

The National Digestive Diseases Information Clearinghouse (NDDIC) is a service of the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK). The NIDDK is part of the National Institutes of Health of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Established in 1980, the Clearinghouse provides information about digestive diseases to people with digestive disorders and to their families, health care professionals, and the public. The NDDIC answers inquiries, develops and distributes publications, and works closely with professional and patient organizations and Government agencies to coordinate resources about digestive diseases.

This publication is not copyrighted. The Clearinghouse encourages users of this publication to duplicate and distribute as many copies as desired.

This publication may contain information about medications and, when taken as prescribed, the conditions they treat. When prepared, this publication included the most current information available. For updates or for questions about any medications, contact the U.S. Food and Drug Administration toll-free at 1–888–INFO–FDA (1–888–463–6332) or visit www.fda.gov. Consult your health care provider for more information.


NIH Publication No. 13–4686
September 2013

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Page last updated October 16, 2013

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PAINT ROCK ALABAMA tspan:3m PAINT ROCK ALABAMA




Tips to Prevent Data Theft in PAINT ROCK ALABAMA

Today, it’s quick and easy to get a credit card approved, transfer money from one account to another, renew your driver’s license, fill a prescription from your doctor at your local pharmacy, use store loyalty cards, and purchase products online. But you pay for this convenience by providing more opportunities for your personal information to be changed, stolen, or reported inaccurately. Companies can also use the information you have shared to direct their future marketing efforts or can sell the information to other companies. To help protect your privacy, follow these tips:

  • Look for privacy statements on websites, sales materials, and forms you fill out. If a website claims to follow a set of established voluntary standards, read the standards. Don´t assume they provide the level of privacy you want.
  • Ask how your personal information will be stored and used.
  • Only provide the purchase date, model/serial numbers, and your contact information of warranty registration forms.
  • Discuss privacy with others in your home. Everyone, even children, should understand what information is not appropriate to share on the phone, while using a computer, tablet, smart phone and in other situations.

Check with your state or local consumer agency to find out whether any state laws that help protect your privacy. Some companies and industry groups have also adopted voluntary policies that address privacy concerns.

Creating Secure Passwords

The number of passwords that you need on a daily basis can be overwhelming. It is tempting to use the same password across several sites; however to get the most protection available, you should use different passwords on each site and change your passwords periodically. The goal for creating passwords is to strike a balance between being something that is easy to remember and unique. Some general tips for creating a secure password include:

  • Use a mix of uppercase and lowercase letters, numbers, and special characters.
  • The longer password, the better it is.
  • Don’t use your name, birthday, license plate, favorite sports teams or other facts that are easily guessed.
  • Create a password based on a phrase. For example “A stitch in time saves nine” can be translated into the password “Ast!Ts9”. where each character represents a word in the phrase.
  • If you must use the same password on several websites, add a prefix or suffix. For example, use “Ast!Ts9:4bnk”for your bank account and “Eml: Ast!Ts9” for your email account.

Back to Top

Specialty Consumer Reports

Credit reports are not the only reports that you can get for free. The same law that allows you to get a free credit report each year also allows you to get a copy of specialty consumer reports. Just like Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion collect your credit information, there are other companies that collect information about your medical, insurance, rental/tenant and alternative credit histories. Landlords, insurers and other companies buy these reports to help them decide whether or not they will offer their services to you.

Just like your credit reports, you have the right to a free annual report from each specialty consumer reporting agency. Since there is no centralized place to order these reports (like there is for credit reports), you must contact each agency individually. If you are planning to rent an apartment, ask the landlord for the name of the screening company that they use and request a copy of your report in advance. Similarly if you are getting a new insurance policy, you can contact the consumer reporting agencies that collect related information. If there is a mistake on your report, you have a right to correct it.

For a list of specialty consumer agencies, visit the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (PDF) or Privacy Rights Clearinghouse. If you need to file a complaint about a consumer reporting agency, contact the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau or the Federal Trade Commission.

[29]



In PAINT ROCK ALABAMA: Why Good Trade Deals Matter to a Business

Nick Martin is the co-founder of The Pro´s Closet, an online used-cycling business. He sent the following email to the White House list to highlight why a better trade deal means a brighter future for online businesses like his.

The Trans-Pacific Partnership isn´t just President Obama´s proposed trade deal -- it´s mine, too. It´s a trade deal that millions of other online small business owners in this country would be proud to add their name to. I want to tell you why:

Every time I step through the doors of one of our 4,000-square-foot warehouses in Boulder and Denver, Colorado -- every time I see the bikes and cycling parts that line those walls and take in the energetic buzz of our 30-member team -- I take a step back and reflect on a simple fact: I own a business. It’s a "pinch-me" moment -- every time.

I am a cyclist and the proud co-owner of The Pro´s Closet, an online used-cycling store. And thanks to the Internet and the availability of e-commerce platforms like eBay, we´ve gone global. After all, when it’s not cycling season in the U.S., it’s peak season somewhere else in the world.

International customers aren´t just good for business abroad; they’re great for my Colorado communities. Why? Because selling in more markets means I can hire more people here at home. In fact, more small businesses are using the Internet to grow their business by reaching new customers they couldn´t reach before.

This is why trade is so important to me. If the success of American businesses in the global economy is important to you, say you’re an ambassador for a better trade deal that delivers a brighter future for all of us.

It may seem like a really remote and technical issue, but it actually has a real impact on how small businesses like mine do business. Currently more than 40% of our transactions cross U.S. borders. Unfortunately, most of our trade rules were written in a "pre-Internet" era, which means they are a nightmare to navigate for small online businesses.

Here’s an example: Right now, customs rules are so inconsistent and hard to follow that if we put a cycling part in the wrong packaging or mail it with the wrong label, it won’t make it to our customer in one country. The rules are different for each country, and are sometimes set up in a way that completely blocks out American business.

That is why it is so important that we secure the Trans-Pacific Partnership, a new kind of trade agreement that will ensure America writes the rules and levels the playing field for online businesses and American workers by:

Reducing and eliminating tariffs across the Asia-Pacific region

Streamlining customs procedures

Making the rules more transparent, consistent, and less costly

Helping keep the Internet open and free, enabling online businesses to operate without unnecessary infrastructure costs

Of course, as the President has said, not all of our past trade deals have lived up to their promise. Thankfully, this trade deal is on track to be different. In fact, the Trans-Pacific Partnership is shaping up to be the most progressive trade deal the world has ever seen. [13]










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