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Home country: USA
Current location: Georgia
Member since: Tue Feb 10, 2004, 12:08 PM
Number of posts: 39,340

About Me

Environmental Scientist

Journal Archives

Tuesday Toon Roundup 2: The Rest

Black Lives Matter

Women’s Health

Jim Crow




Mine Disaster




Tuesday Toon Roundup 1-Klown Kar hits a Trump Bump

Slowpoke Toon: Aftermath of Trump

NASA astronauts just ate food grown in space for the first time

For the first time in history, astronauts have eaten food grown in space.

As part of NASA's VEG-01 experiment (nicknamed "VEGGIE") aboard the International Space Station, they sampled red romaine lettuce that's been growing in a specially designed chamber since early July, under the care of astronaut Scott Kelly. After Kjell Lindgren carefully cleaned the greens with sanitizing wipes to ensure they were clean, the duo and Japanese astronaut Kimiya Yui first tasted them around 12:45 ET on Monday — before trying them again with a bit of olive oil and balsamic vinegar.

The astronauts only get to eat half the lettuce; the other half will be frozen and sent back to Earth for scientific analysis. Long term, the goal of this sort of microgravity gardening is to add a bit of variety and nutrition to astronauts' heavily processed, thermostabilized diets — something that could be especially important for the multiyear journey it'd take to send people to Mars.

"The astronauts have a pretty amazing diet, with a lot of different foods," Gioia Massa, NASA's lead researcher on the project, told me last year, "but they don't get fresh vegetables often."


Assault on Planned Parenthood was years in the making

Weeks before the first undercover Planned Parenthood video surfaced, Rep. Diane Black was given a sneak preview of three hours of the not-yet-released footage.

“It literally made me sick to my stomach,” Black (R-Tenn.) recalled during an interview with The Hill Monday. “I was emotional and tearful.”

Snippets of the footage showing a Planned Parenthood official candidly discussing the price of fetal tissue for medical research began to emerge about a month later, thrusting Planned Parenthood into a media firestorm and rekindling a national debate on abortion.

The fallout was no accident. Calls in Congress to defund the taxpayer-backed organization and the unexpected injection of abortion into the building 2016 presidential race are the result of a carefully planned strategy by the Center for Medical Progress, the anti-abortion group behind the videos, and its allies.


Bernie Sanders' Eye-Popping West Coast Swing: 3 Days, 70,000 Cheering Supporters

by James Nash

Some 27,000 people descended Monday night on the Los Angeles Memorial Sports Arena, which has hosted acts such as Madonna and Pink Floyd, to hear from a raspy-voiced 73-year-old who has become the 2016 political season's breakout star.

For Senator Bernie Sanders, the Vermont Democrat and self-proclaimed socialist, it was the third staggeringly large crowd in three nights that capped a west coast swing that put his political rivals on notice. From fellow white-haired activists to youth wielding signs depicting him as "Bernie Man," his head grafted onto a stick figure representing the counterculture Burning Man festival in Nevada, his fans turned out in numbers that other candidates might only dream of at this early stage in the race.

The crowd packed the Los Angeles arena and spilled into an overflow area outside, where people cheered under the palm trees as Sanders spoke for an hour, denouncing income inequality and money in politics and supporting gay marriage and abortion rights and free tuition at public universities.

"This is a bigger buildup, a bigger grassroots thing than Howard Dean," said Allen Peters, a 73-year-old doctor wearing a T-shirt from the failed 2004 Democratic presidential candidate from Vermont, also a darling among liberals. "Bernie Sanders is in a better place than Howard Dean was at this time. We always have to worry that Hillary and her bank buddies will knock him down."

Sanders himself did not mention former Democratic frontrunner Hillary Clinton or any Republican candidates during his speech, which drew sustained and rapturous applause and cheers when he voiced support for universal health care, legal rights for undocumented immigrants and higher minimum wages. He repeated his call for a "grassroots political revolution" that would upend the economic system, which he said is rigged to benefit the elite.



Washington Post: Another huge crowd for Democratic presidential hopeful Bernie Sanders

LOS ANGELES — Dante Harris, the leader of a local flight attendants union, had a question for the 17,500 people inside the Los Angeles Sports Arena.

“Did all of you make the trip out here on a Monday night because everything is going well for you and your family?”

“No!” they shouted in unison.

Harris nodded in agreement and shouted back: “Workers’ lives matter! ... Black lives matter! ... The truth matters!”

Deafening cheers nearly drowned out Harris as he said: “We can build a movement with Bernie!”



Positive article, much more so than the one today in the LA times….

What happens when you comment on Daily Mail articles with actual Nazi propaganda

by Matthew Champion

TL;DR: They get up-voted... a lot

We've highlighted how in the last few weeks, media coverage of migration into Europe has become increasingly alarmist, not helped by our prime minister using language more associated with the far-right.

The anti-migrant sentiment expressed in some papers became too much for the people behind the @bestofthemail and @dmreporter Twitter accounts, who prefer to remain anonymous.

In a post on Medium, they detailed an experiment conducted on the comments section of the Daily Mail website to show the dangers of this dehumanising language becoming normalised.

They wrote:

wanted to see what level of support the comments would get if we took some famous pieces of Nazi propaganda and changed the word 'Jew' with 'migrant'.

Here's what happened:

the rest

'I've got a chainsaw': Moviegoers flee Newport Beach theater

NEWPORT BEACH – Moviegoers panicked and fled after a teen brandished what they thought was a chainsaw 40 minutes into a showing of “The Gift” at Edwards Big Newport 6 across from Fashion Island on Saturday night.

“All of a sudden, someone opened the emergency exit, and yelled ‘I’ve got a chainsaw’ and cranked it up,” Kyndall Aldama, 23, of Huntington Beach said Sunday. “No one got up. Then he cranked it again, and everyone started screaming. Someone else yelled they saw a gun.”

Aldama, who was seated in the middle of the theater, said she was pushed to the ground and trampled in the melee.

“At least eight people just stepped on and over me. Everyone thought it was like ‘The Texas Chainsaw Massacre,’” she said.



Facing Rising Dental Costs, Seniors head to Mexico

LOS ALGODONES, Mexico (AP) -- Mark Bolzern traveled 3,700 miles to go to the dentist. The 56-year-old Anchorage, Alaska, native left home this spring, made a pit stop in Las Vegas to pick up a friend, and kept heading south, all the way to Los Algodones, Mexico, a small border town teeming with dental offices.

About 60 percent of Americans have dental insurance coverage, the highest it has been in decades. But even so, the nation's older population has been largely left behind. Nearly 70 percent of seniors are not insured, according to a study compiled by Oral Health America. A major reason is because dental care is not covered by Medicare and many employers no longer offer post-retirement health benefits. What's more, the Affordable Care Act allows enrollees to get dental coverage only if they purchase general health coverage first, which many seniors don't need. At the same time, seniors often require the most costly dental work, like crowns, implants and false teeth.

As a result, many are seeking cheaper care in places like Los Algodones, where Mexican dentists who speak English and sometimes accept U.S. insurance offer rock-bottom prices for everything from a cleaning to implants. Dentists in Los Algodones say a large portion of their clients are seniors.

In the desert outpost near the border of California and Arizona, men in white shirts stand outside of offices with signs advertising root canals and teeth cleanings. Other signs advertise prescription drugs like muscle relaxers at low rates - no prescription needed.

For Bolzern, seeing a dentist in Los Algodones meant a savings of up to $62,000. He was told the extensive dental work he needed - his teeth needed to be raised and he needed a crown on every molar - would cost $65,000 at a private dentist. He looked for lower rates, finding a dental school where the work was less expensive because it was performed by students. But it still cost $35,000.

He paid $3,000 in Mexico and has been back several times.

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