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Current location: Georgia
Member since: Tue Feb 10, 2004, 12:08 PM
Number of posts: 38,780

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Environmental Scientist

Journal Archives

German police puts aggressive squirrel 'behind bars'

Berlin: In a bizarre incident, an aggressive squirrel was 'arrested' by police in Germany after a woman complained that the rodent was following her around.

Police received an unusual emergency call on Wednesday from a young woman in Bottrop in North Rhine-Westphalia (NRW), complaining that while walking down the street in the west German city, she found herself being chased by the squirrel.

Unable to shake the animal off, she eventually called the police for help and an officer was quick to come to her aid. After capturing the rodent, officers brought it back to the station, where it was discovered that the animal was showing symptoms of exhaustion, The Local reported.

The squirrel had been 'arrested' and taken into custody, police said in a press release.

Police in North Rhine-Westphalia (NRW) published a video on their Facebook page on Wednesday, showing an officer at the station feeding honey the little squirrel.


Charles Pierce on Wisconsin Corruption

​The sandbags were piled high and deep around Scott Walker, the goggle-eyed homunculus hired by Koch Industries to manage their midwest subsidiary formerly known as the state of Wisconsin. And, on Thursday, his masters got everything they'd paid for, and more. There now is only one Republican presidential candidate under active criminal investigation — Chris Christie. Rick Perry, of course, remains under indictment.

Writing for the majority, Justice Michael Gableman found a key section
of Wisconsin's campaign finance law is "unconstitutionally overbroad and
vague" and that the activities prosecutors had investigated were not
illegal. "To be clear, this conclusion ends the John Doe investigation
because the special prosecutor's legal theory is unsupported in either reason
or law," Gableman wrote. "Consequently, the investigation is closed.
Consistent with our decision and the order entered by Reserve Judge (Gregory)
Peterson, we order that the special prosecutor and the district attorneys
involved in this investigation must cease all activities related to the
investigation, return all property seized in the investigation from any
individual or organization, and permanently destroy all copies of information
and other materials obtained through the investigation.

So, not only does this decision pull Walker's cojones out of the fire, it also demolishes whatever was left of Wisconsin's campaign-finance regulations. This is particularly piquant in this case when one notes that Wisconsin also operates under the Second Worst Idea in American Politics — The Elected Judiciary.

In February, the special prosecutor asked that one or more justices drop out of the case,
presumably because they have benefitted from spending by the Wisconsin Club for
Growth and Wisconsin Manufacturers & Commerce. The Wisconsin Club for
Growth is estimated to have spent $400,000 for Ziegler in 2007; $507,000 for
Gableman in 2008; $520,000 for Prosser in 2011; and $350,000 for Roggensack in
2013. WMC spent an estimated $2.2 million for Ziegler; $1.8 million for
Gableman; $1.1 million for Prosser; and $500,000 for Roggensack. In addition,
Citizens for a Strong America — a group funded entirely by the Wisconsin Club
for Growth — spent an estimated $985,000 to help Prosser. The spending
estimates come from the Wisconsin Democracy Campaign, which tracks political
spending. The justices did not give a reason for why they don't view that
spending as a conflict, but court rules say political spending on its own is
not enough to force a justice off a case.

If you're keeping score at home, the same organizations that were the subject of the criminal probe gave hundreds of thousands of neatly laundered dollars to the judges who ruled that those same organizations did nothing wrong on behalf of Scott Walker because fk you, that's why. If this happened in Myanmar or Kazakhstan, we'd all be laughing at it. Instead, let's once again congratulate Justice Anthony Kennedy for his immortal observation that: "...independent expenditures do not lead to, or create the appearance of, quid pro quo corruption."


Dinosaur find: Velociraptor ancestor was 'winged dragon'

By Victoria Gill

Scientists have discovered a winged dinosaur - an ancestor of the velociraptor - that they say was on the cusp of becoming a bird.

The 6ft 6in (2m) creature was almost perfectly preserved in limestone, thanks to a volcanic eruption that had buried it in north-east China.

And the 125-million year-old fossil suggests many other dinosaurs, including velociraptors, would have looked like "big, fluffy killer birds".

But it is unlikely that it could fly.



My Irony Meter Just Broke- McCain: Trump 'fired up the crazies'


Donald Trump “fired up the crazies” in his state when he held a rally in Phoenix last weekend, Arizona Sen. John McCain said in a recent interview. During that appearance (and others last weekend), Trump was joined by the father of Jamiel Shaw, who was killed by an undocumented immigrant.

Trump has tapped into “some anger” in the state over the conditions at the border, McCain told The New Yorker’s Ryan Lizza in an article published Thursday.

“It’s very bad,” the Republican senator said. “This performance with our friend out in Phoenix is very hurtful to me,” McCain said. “Because what he did was he fired up the crazies.”
Trump’s latest polling numbers would seem to suggest that his message is resonating with Republican voters.

Read more: http://www.politico.com/story/2015/07/john-mccain-donald-trump-immigration-phoenix-120216.html

Ya Sure, Ya Betcha John! You would know all about that.....

Thursday TOON Roundup 5- The Rest





Thanks for the support!

Thursday TOON Roundup 4- Greek suffering

Thursday TOON Roundup 3- Pluto is not a dog!

Thursday TOON Roundup 2 - Planet GOP

Thursday Toon Roundup 1-Lame Duck? Hah!

Buckyballs in space solve 100-year-old riddle

Carbon cages floating in the space between the stars have been confirmed as the cause of cosmic-light features that have puzzled astronomers for almost 100 years.

In 1919, Mary Lea Heger, a graduate student at the University of California’s Lick Observatory on Mount Hamilton, saw that particular wavelengths of light were dimmed in the emissions from certain stars, in a way that seemed unrelated to the stars themselves. As astronomers spotted more such features, they attributed them to molecules in the interstellar gas that absorb wavelengths of light on their way to Earth, and called them diffuse interstellar bands (DIB). Some 400 DIBs have now been observed, from across the Milky Way and beyond.

Dust grains, carbon chains and even floating bacteria emerged as candidates to explain these features, but none proved conclusive. Now, a laboratory analysis of the light absorbed by buckyballs — hollow, soccer-ball shaped molecules made up of 60 carbon atoms — under space-like conditions has provided direct match for DIBs seen in 19941. They are the first DIBs to be explained.

The finding, published in Nature on 15 July2, opens the door to identifying other molecules floating in interstellar space. “As far as I'm concerned this is the scientific paper of the year,” says Harry Kroto, the British chemist who shared the 1996 Nobel Prize in Chemistry for the discovery of buckminsterfullerene with colleagues Robert Curl and Richard Smalley.


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