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n2doc

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Home country: USA
Current location: Georgia
Member since: Tue Feb 10, 2004, 12:08 PM
Number of posts: 31,429

About Me

Environmental Scientist

Journal Archives

Toles Toon- Obama the Firefighter

Toon...

Friday TOON Roundup 3- The Rest

Bad





Crooks





Georgia




War





RIP






Friday TOON Roundup 2 -Budget
















Friday TOON Roundup 1- Repubs

















Mr. Fish Toon- Good Grief, Linus

I'm really wondering about something

For over 30 years we have been cutting taxes on the rich, with only a few bumps. Yet I don't remember in all that time any increases in entitlements (meaning lower retirement age, better health care coverage, lower medicare costs). Instead, so -called 'entitlements always get the axe too. Even SS has had its enrollment age raised, and has perpetually been increased at a lower rate than the overall inflation rate, and our payroll tax increases. So WHY IN THE HELL DO PEOPLE EQUATE TAX INCREASES ON THE RICH WITH "ENTITLEMENT" CUTS???????


I'll support going back to 1968 income tax rates (last time we got a real increase in 'entitlements' if they want to equate the two.

Pretty pics of snowflakes





These macro images of snow flakes were snapped by Russian photographer Andrew Osokin. They really capture the delicate beauty and complexity of snowflakes, to such an extent that it's difficult to believe they're actually real. They are. If you like 'em, you can see hundreds more of Andrew's images over on his LensArt website.

more
http://gizmodo.com/5966165/youll-never-believe-these-stunning-photos-of-snow-are-real/gallery/1

The New Rise of Segregated Schools


After half a century, America's efforts to end segregation seem to be winding down. In the years after Brown v. Board of Education, 755 school districts were under desegregation orders. A new Stanford study reports that as of 2009, that number had dropped to as few as 268.

The study is the first to take a comprehensive look at whether court-ordered busing successfully ended the legacy of Jim Crow in public education, and it suggests a mission that is far from accomplished. On average, those districts that stopped forcing schools to mix students by race have seen a gradual but steady--and significant--return of racial isolation, especially at the elementary level.

It's unclear what effect school "re-segregation" will have on minority achievement, though a large body of research suggests it certainly won't help efforts to improve test scores, graduation rates, and college entry levels for blacks and Hispanics, a growing share of the American population. But the retreat from desegregation also suggests the policy had significant flaws, problems current education reformers should pay attention to.

The hope behind desegregation was that it would bring together white and black children to learn with, and from, each other, and end the disparities that blacks suffered under legal segregation like hand-me-down textbooks, decrepit buildings, lower-paid teachers, and, of course, lagging achievement. In the three decades following Brown v. Board of Education, courts ordered districts to create elaborate student assignment plans (often dependent on forced busing) to mix black, Hispanic, and white students together in the same schools. Most school boards complied reluctantly, and parents in places like Boston reacted violently.

more

http://www.theatlanticcities.com/politics/2012/12/new-rise-segregated-schools/4084/#

Plant Stress Paints Early Picture of Drought

In July 2012, farmers in the U.S. Midwest and Plains regions watched crops wilt and die after a stretch of unusually low precipitation and high temperatures. Before a lack of rain and record-breaking heat signaled a problem, however, scientists observed another indication of drought in data from NASA and NOAA satellites: plant stress.

Healthy vegetation requires a certain amount of water from the soil every day to stay alive, and when soil moisture falls below adequate levels, plants become stressed. Scientists with the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Agricultural Research Service (USDA-ARS) have developed a way to use satellite data to map that plant stress. The maps could soon aid in drought forecasts, and prove useful for applications such as crop yield estimates or decisions about crop loss compensation.

"Crop drought monitoring is of high practical value, and any advance notice of drought conditions helps the farmer make practical decisions sooner," says Steve Running, an ecologist at University of Montana in Missoula.

A new animation of plant stress (top) shows how drought evolved across the United States from January 2010 through September 2012. In spring 2010, satellites measured cool leaf temperatures, indicating healthy plants and wetter-than-average conditions (green), over many areas across the country. By summer 2011, satellites saw the warming of stressed vegetation, indicating significantly lower-than-usual water availability (red) in many areas, most notably in Texas. Crops were either dead or would soon be dead.

more
http://www.nasa.gov/topics/earth/features/plant-stress.html
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