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Member since: Tue Feb 10, 2004, 12:08 PM
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Environmental Scientist

Journal Archives

Lois Lilienstein, of the Children’s Trio Sharon, Lois & Bram, Dies at 78

Source: NYT

Lois Lilienstein, whose sunny personality and tuneful, bell-clear voice were central to the live and televised performances of Sharon, Lois & Bram, the Canadian singing group popular among young children and their families, died on Wednesday at her home in Toronto. She was 78.

The cause was cancer, her son, David, told The Associated Press.

A trained pianist and singer, Ms. Lilienstein was an American Midwesterner who in 1966 moved with her husband, Ernest, to Toronto, where she began performing for and teaching music to preschoolers and other children. In the 1970s, she met Sharon Hampson and Bramwell Morrison when all three were performing at the Mariposa Folk Festival in Orillia, Ontario, north of Toronto. They released an album of eclectic folk songs for children, “One Elephant, Deux Éléphants,” in 1978, and began touring with a show that often encouraged singalongs and other forms of audience participation.

Their profile was raised in 1984 with the premiere of their television show, “Sharon, Lois & Bram’s Elephant Show” (initially merely “The Elephant Show”), featuring the trio; another children’s entertainer, Eric Nagler; an actor in a cheery elephant costume, Paula Gallivan; and both child and adult guests. The show was on the Canadian Broadcasting Company until January 1989, and in reruns on the Nickelodeon cable channel in the late 1980s and the 1990s.

Read more: http://www.nytimes.com/2015/04/24/arts/music/lois-lilienstein-78-of-the-childrens-trio-sharon-lois-bram-is-dead.html

The Senate’s Top Climate Denier Is Using Climate Change To Argue For More Nuclear Power

The traditional definition of chutzpah involves a guy who kills his parents, then pleads for mercy because he is now an orphan. The modern definition of chutzpah involves … Sen. James Inhofe (R-OK).

The chair of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee has an Earth Day (!) op-ed arguing we should embrace carbon-free nuclear power because of the threat posed by global warming. You remember Inhofe, the guy who called global warming a hoax, the guy who for over a decade has trashed climate scientists, such as James Hansen, whom he called in 2006 a “NASA scientist and alarmist.”
Apparently, however, Inhofe no longer sees Hansen as radioactive. He writes, without a trace of irony:

James Hansen, the former head of NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies, said in 2013 that ‘continued opposition to nuclear power threatens humanity’s ability to avoid dangerous climate change.’

How cool is it that Inhofe is now apparently on board with top climatologist Hansen on the urgent need “to avoid dangerous climate change” by accelerated deployment of zero-carbon technologies? Presumably he’ll soon be on board with Hansen’s call for a high and rising carbon dioxide fee (returned to the public as a dividend), and a World War II scale effort to return CO2 levels back to 350 parts per million from their current level of 400 ppm (and rising 2+ ppm a year).


Trans-Pacific Partnership: bill on trade deals passes key Congress committee

A companion “fast-track” bill cleared a Senate panel on Wednesday and both are now ready for action in their respective chambers.

Still, the way forward is likely to be treacherous with many of Obama’s fellow Democrats in opposition over worries that trade deals could harm jobs and the environment, leaving the White House to rely heavily on Republican support.

The House committee’s 25-13 vote in favour of the bill provided an exhibit of this unusual alliance, with only two of the panel’s 15 Democrats voting for the legislation – much less support than it received in the Senate panel.

Committee chairman Paul Ryan joked it was a “strange world” when he had to defend Obama against amendments moved by his own party.

The panel’s top Democrat, Sander Levin of Michigan, is one of the fiercest opponents. He put forward an alternative backed by unions and the House Democratic leadership, but Ryan did not allow a vote.



Money and corruption make strange bedfellows, no?

Medical marijuana in Alabama is dead: Key senator says state not ready

Was it all for nothing?

Medical marijuana legislation won a small victory in an Alabama Senate panel on Wednesday, but long-time senator and chairman of the committee that sets the calendar for the floor says the bill is dead.

This means the full membership of the Senate won't even get a chance to debate it.

Sen. Jabo Waggoner, Rules Committee chairman, told AL.com that Alabama isn't ready for legislation that would allow patients with some chronic medical issues to purchase medical marijuana.

"It is bad legislation," he said. "We don't need that in Alabama."



Delusional House GOP Claims to Have 'Balanced the Budget' Already

In a new promotional image celebrating its first 100 days in power, the Republican leadership of the House of Representatives puts a happy green check mark next to something that hasn't really happened. To buttress some articles about how "Congress is actually doing its job," the House GOP insists that it has "balanced the budget."

If you missed those headlines about the elimination of the deficit, don't worry: They never happened. On March 25, the Republican-controlled House passed a budget for fiscal 2016, with all but 17 members of the majority voting for it. If followed, and if its predictions panned out, it would eliminate the deficit by fiscal 2025. Among the "no" voters was North Carolina Representative Walter Jones, who complained that the budget would... not eliminate the deficit until fiscal 2025. "This budget relies on a host of smoke and mirrors accounting gimmicks and rosy economic forecasting to make it appear as if it balances in ten years," he explained.


Friday TOON Roundup 4 -The Rest







100 years ago…

Friday TOON Roundup 3 -Koch and GOP



Friday TOON Roundup 2 - Immigrants

Friday TOON Roundup 1 - Drone Killings

Mammoth genome sequence completed

An international team of scientists has sequenced the complete genome of the woolly mammoth.

A US team is already attempting to study the animals' characteristics by inserting mammoth genes into elephant stem cells.

They want to find out what made the mammoths different from their modern relatives and how their adaptations helped them survive the ice ages.

The new genome study has been published in the Journal Current Biology.

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