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Burned feet, parched throats: Arizona homeless desperate to escape heatwave

The man was not wearing any shoes, and he was crawling along the baking asphalt with socks on his hands.

That was how David Lee Witherspoon Jr, president of a food pantry, found him while driving through Phoenix last week. The man told Witherspoon he had left his home without any footwear after a fight, though Witherspoon thought he might have been homeless. Then he had taken off his socks to remove some burrs, but the road surface was so scorching he was forced onto all fours. Luckily Witherspoon had some spare sneakers in his car, and helped the man put them on.

“Anyone crawling along the street when it’s over 100 degrees – you would not survive very long before you got third-degree blisters on your hands and even your knees,” Witherspoon said.

It is currently so hot in Arizona that just inhaling can feel painful. Dozens of flights have been canceled at the Phoenix airport. The National Weather Service has declared an excessive heat warning that will be in place until Monday, amid temperatures approaching 120F.

more
https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2017/jun/23/arizona-heatwave-homeless-phoenix

In the blink of an eye, Police turned violent at a traffic stop

In a heartbeat, Anthony Promvongsa’s sunny summer day in Worthington, Minnesota, turned from ordinary to a nightmare.

Shortly after encountering an agitated motorist driving in front of him on July 28, 2016, Anthony found himself confronted by the police. Within seconds of exiting his vehicle after pulling Anthony over, Agent Joe Joswiak of the Buffalo Ridge Drug Task Force opened the door of Anthony’s car, screaming, “Get the fuck out of the car, motherfucker!”

Without hesitation, Agent Joswiak pulled, punched, and elbowed Anthony several times in the back while Anthony was still restrained by his seat belt. Agent Joswiak then yanked Anthony out of the car, threw him to the ground, and pressed his knee to the back of Anthony’s neck to pin Anthony facedown on the pavement while he and Sgt. Tim Gaul of the Worthington Police Department applied handcuffs.

It turns out the agitated motorist Anthony encountered before being assaulted by Agent Joswiak was an off-duty police officer who called Joswiak to go after Anthony for tailgating him. The officer reports regarding the incident make no mention of any suspicion that Anthony was committing a drug offense.

more
https://www.aclu-mn.org/en/news/blink-eye-police-officers-turned-traffic-stop-unnecessarily-violent-encounter

Judge orders changes at Wisconsin juvenile prisons

MADISON (AP) -- A federal judge issued a stinging rebuke Friday of disciplinary practices at Wisconsin's youth prisons, saying state officials have demonstrated a "callous indifference" to the harm caused to juvenile inmates by the use of solitary confinement, pepper spray and shackles.

Those tactics used at the Lincoln Hills and Copper Lake prisons likely amount to unconstitutional cruel and unusual punishment and are outside the national norms for juvenile corrections, U.S. District Judge James Peterson said.

"Ted Kaczynski has less restrictive solitary confinement than youth at Lincoln Hills," the judge said, referring to the convicted killer known as the Unabomber.

Attorneys for the American Civil Liberties Union and Juvenile Law Center had asked Peterson to immediately ban solitary confinement, pepper spray and the use of shackles at the Lincoln Hills and Copper Lake prisons located about 155 miles north of Madison. Corrections officials argued doing that could put the safety of inmates and staff at harm.

more
http://fox11online.com/news/state/federal-judge-to-rule-in-wisconsin-youth-prison-case

Mistrial Declared in Shooting of Black Driver by Cincinnati Officer

Source: NYT

CINCINNATI — For the third time in a week, the trial of a police officer in the fatal shooting of a black man has ended without a conviction, the latest setback for prosecutors and activists seeking greater accountability for the use of deadly force by the police.

On Friday, a judge found that the jury was hopelessly deadlocked in the retrial of Raymond M. Tensing, the former University of Cincinnati police officer who fatally shot Samuel DuBose, an unarmed motorist, in 2015. The judge, Leslie Ghizfter, declared a mistrial after earlier on Friday urging jurors to keep deliberating. Mr. Tensing’s first trial last fall also ended with a hung jury.

When the Hamilton County prosecutor, Joseph T. Deters, first charged Mr. Tensing with murder and involuntary manslaughter in July 2015, he suggested a path to a conviction would be much easier than this, calling it the most “asinine” police shooting he had ever seen.

But its rocky course in court, after two mistrials, underscores a difficult reality for those who want police officers held criminally liable in cases like these: A conviction is far from assured, even when there is video evidence and an aggressive prosecutor.

Read more: https://www.nytimes.com/2017/06/23/us/raymond-tensing-samuel-dubose-cincinnati.html?_r=0&referer=

Widely used marine seismic survey air gun operations negatively impact zooplankton

Zooplankton underpin the health and productivity of global marine ecosystems. Here we present evidence that suggests seismic surveys cause significant mortality to zooplankton populations. Seismic surveys are used extensively to explore for petroleum resources using intense, low-frequency, acoustic impulse signals. Experimental air gun signal exposure decreased zooplankton abundance when compared with controls, as measured by sonar (~3–4 dB drop within 15–30 min) and net tows (median 64% decrease within 1 h), and caused a two- to threefold increase in dead adult and larval zooplankton. Impacts were observed out to the maximum 1.2 km range sampled, which was more than two orders of magnitude greater than the previously assumed impact range of 10 m. Although no adult krill were present, all larval krill were killed after air gun passage. There is a significant and unacknowledged potential for ocean ecosystem function and productivity to be negatively impacted by present seismic technology.

Phytoplankton and their grazers—zooplankton—underpin ocean productivity1,2, therefore significant impacts on plankton by anthropogenic sources have enormous implications for ocean ecosystem structure and health. In addition, a significant component of zooplankton communities comprises the larval stages of many commercial fisheries species. Healthy populations of fish, top predators and marine mammals are not possible without viable planktonic productivity1,2,3.

Man’s dependence on fossil fuels requires continual exploration for new resources. Deposits of undiscovered oil and gas reserves in the world’s oceans4 are estimated to be substantial (Fig. 1), with exploration occurring in most petroleum provinces. In the marine environment, exploration is achieved via an acoustic imaging technique that uses intense, low-frequency impulse signals generated near the sea surface and directed into the seabed (‘seismic surveys’)5. Spatially distributed arrays of air guns simultaneously release high-pressure air (13.8 MPa or 2,000 psi) into the water to produce the impulse signal. Reflections from sub-sea density discontinuities received by strings of hydrophones enable sub-sea image generation. Commonly, a series of closely spaced parallel tracks are followed to systematically survey large swathes of ocean, each track with a series of acoustic signal locations (Fig. 1b,c)5.




a, Estimated undiscovered marine oil deposits shown by geological province using a logarithmic colour scale in millions of barrels of oil equivalent (MMBOE; source: USGS data6 for 2012), location of experiment shown by a star symbol. b, A typical 3D seismic survey area, located by the black circle in a. c, Close-up of seismic lines with individual air gun firing locations, from the area indicated by the white rectangle in b.


more

http://www.nature.com/articles/s41559-017-0195

Screwing up the whole food chain.

Just About Every Major Medical Group Hates the GOP Health Care Plans

by MAGGIE FOX


Groups representing pediatricians, cancer specialists, heart doctors and family physicians all agree: Both the House and the Senate offerings for fixing health care in the U.S. would make things worse, not better.

Within hours of its release, groups representing medical professionals were denouncing the Senate version, called the Better Care Reconciliation Act or BCRA.

“The Senate draft health care bill is literally heartless,” American Heart Association CEO Nancy Brown said.

Here are five reasons so many medical professionals oppose the Republican-proposed changes made so far to the 2010 Affordable Care Act:

Women

Medicaid covers half the births in the U.S. right now and the House and Senate bills would both not only pull back the expansion of Medicaid that underlay Obamacare, but reduce federal funding for the original program, too.

more

http://www.nbcnews.com/health/health-care/just-about-every-major-medical-group-hates-gop-health-care-n776001

Toon - What's the Fuss?

Friday TOON Roundup 3 - The Rest


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Week

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