Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Chinese, LA, London, Rome, Melbourne Pollution - What Goes Around, Comes Around

Article is about how Asian pollution circles the globe but same holds for urban centers around the world. Coal-fired pollution from the US mid-west poisons lakes in New York. Dust and pollution from West Africa damages coral reefs in Virgin Islands. There is no "away" to throw things to! Away is here.

Pollution from Asia Circles Globe at Stratospheric Heights

Once in the stratosphere, the pollutants circulate around the globe for several years. Some eventually descend back into the lower atmosphere, while others break apart.

"This is a vivid example of pollutants altering our atmosphere in subtle and far-reaching ways," Randel says
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Spring cleaning time for your head - be mannerly to men and women

Use your urge for Spring Cleaning to clean out your culture and manners closet - your mind - grin. Jessica will help you get started.
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Mandating chivalry is mandating sexism

A Latin teacher in Arizona has instituted a rule that all of his male students act like "gentleman" to the young women in class. Yes, that's right - he's mandated chivalry.

First of all, this is Latin class - not Old-School Dating 101. But I digress.

Now, let's be clear - there's a big difference between chivalry and manners. Being a nice person that opens doors for others (regardless of their gender) and being respectful is something that we should encourage in all people. That's being kind; it's mannered and it's nice. Chivalry, on the other hand, is straight up based on the idea that women are weaker need to be taken care of. It's insulting. It's also a trade-off - one that we're supposed to be grateful for - for being at the shit end of the patriarchy.

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Tax Loophole for Boeing Ending in 2013 - Healthcare realities

The news earlier today sounded as if the healthcare reform was going to cause Boeing and other corporations to spend millions more.

What is really going on is that a tax loophole is being closed in three years and they will be paying taxes just like the rest of us.
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The Chicago-based aerospace giant (NYSE: BA), which employs more than 70,000 in Washington state, said the income tax charge was necessary because in 2013, the company will no longer be able to claim an income tax deduction related to prescription drug benefits provided to retirees and reimbursed under Medicare.

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Monday, March 29, 2010

NASA's UAV-Plus Wish I had confidence it's not for CIA, DOD and DHS too

30 hours of flight time at 65,000 feet with HD cameras and computerized "sniffers." Sounds a lot like a cover for a U-2 spy plane circa 1950s and 1960s without an on board pilot to get captured. Google or wiki "Gary Powers and U2" If you are too young to know what I am talking about. Hint? Gary Powers is not a member of the Irish rock group U2 - grin.

Global Hawk, NASA's New Remote-Controlled Plane

Global Hawk, NASA's New Remote-Controlled Plane
For the past two weeks, they have been working to mount equipment—from HD video cameras to ozone sensors—onto NASA’s Global Hawk, a remote-controlled airplane that can fly for up to 30 hours at altitudes up to 65,000 feet.
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Saturday, March 27, 2010

Congo Killing Just Keeps on Going, Going, Going On - No One Seems to Care?

Where are all those who want regime change here and there, a preemptive strike here and there, and...

Where is anyone who cares about innocents in Uganda. Their government is debating criminalizing being gay and cannot protect its people against the LRA and the Congo government... who cares about the killing?
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(Kampala) - The rebel Lord's Resistance Army (LRA) killed at least 321 civilians and abducted 250 others, including at least 80 children, during a previously unreported four-day rampage in the Makombo area of northeastern Democratic Republic of Congo in December, 2009, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today.

"The Makombo massacre is one of the worst ever committed by the LRA in its bloody 23-year history, yet it has gone unreported for months," said Anneke Van Woudenberg, senior Africa researcher at Human Rights Watch. "The four-day rampage demonstrates that the LRA remains a serious threat to civilians and is not a spent force, as the Ugandan and Congolese governments claim."

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Thursday, March 25, 2010

India-Bangladesh 0 - Earth 1

This is funny, not funny and reminds you that if you look at earth from 20,000 feet - there are no lines/borders separating land, water, people, animals from each other just one earth. Funny thing that. Just one earth - so who votes for messing it up?
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Island claimed by India and Bangladesh sinks below waves

An forest official returns to his base as the sun sets at Sunderbans

For nearly 30 years, India and Bangladesh have argued over control of a tiny rock island in the Bay of Bengal. Now rising sea levels have resolved the dispute for them: the island has gone.

"What these two countries could not achieve from years of talking has been resolved by global warming," said Hazra.

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Similarities between 1918 and 2009 H1N1 Flu gave older people some immunity

Pandemic btw does not mean: "WE ARE ALL GOING TO DIE!" It means that people will get the disease all over the world in a relatively short time period.

Discoveries from this pandemic may help develop vaccines in the future with "cross-over" protection. That might also eliminate any need to use any form of mercury as a preservative.
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Study shows 1918 and 2009 pandemic viruses share key feature

The researchers said the unexpected similarity would have allowed the immune systems of those exposed to the 20th century virus to mount a defense against the 21st century one.

"Our findings provide strong evidence that exposure to earlier viruses has helped to provide some people with immunity to the recent influenza pandemic," Wilson, who is Scripps Research Professor, said in a statement.

The researchers suggested that manipulating newly emerged viruses in such a manner could allow for the development of vaccines against future pandemic strains. If such vaccines were deployed, they said, the antibody protection produced could prevent a novel pandemic strain from becoming entrenched enough to evolve into a persistent seasonal flu.

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Monday, March 22, 2010

Slow learners still want US to use foreign prisons to hide...?

United States Penitentiary (USP), Leavenworth, United States Penitentiary (USP), Leavenworth, United States Penitentiary (USP), Leavenworth. Got it?
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U.S. may expand use of its prison in Afghanistan

U.S. prison at Bagram air base
The White House is considering whether to detain international terrorism suspects at a U.S. military base in Afghanistan, senior U.S. officials said, an option that would lead to another prison with the same purpose as Guantanamo Bay, which it has promised to close.

The idea, which would require approval by President Obama, already has drawn resistance from within the government. Army Gen. Stanley A. McCrystal, the top commander of U.S. and NATO forces in Afghanistan, and other senior officials strongly oppose it, fearing that expansion of the U.S. detention facility at Bagram air base could make the job of stabilizing the country even tougher.
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Thursday, March 18, 2010

Autism and Mercury Link - Electric Power Plants?

Some parents worried about their children being exposed to mercury and triggering autism have focused their attention on trace amounts of mercury in vaccine for diphtheria and some flu vaccines. A more likely suspect may be the mercury emitted daily in coal-fired electric utility plants. I found a fairly good research paper on trends of autism diagnosis increases (Tracing Autism Trends: Prelude for an Epidemic? By Julie Herczeg ...
If autism trends continue to rise at the rate that it is, by 2006-2007, ..... “The United States Autism Epidemic: Our Bitter Harvest” The U.S. Autism ... ) but it did not look into the possibility of mercury from coal-fired plants contributing to a worldwide increase in diagnosing autism. The study did not look at how more doctors knowing how to diagnose autism contributed to the rise in diagnosis either. Study of the two together might give us some good information on how to prevent furt
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Power plants ‘not making a dent’ in mercury emissions

• Power plant mercury emissions have actually risen since 2000 (the first year this data was reported) in several states, including Arkansas, Arizona, Georgia, Iowa, Illinois, Kansas, Louisiana, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, Texas, and others.

AEP’s Gavin Power Plant in Ohio emitted 937 pounds of mercury in 2008, a 115.4 percent increase from 2007. This drastic increase in mercury emissions appears to be due largely to a change in the coal burned at the plant in 2008.
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Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Katie Spotz Rowed from Dakar, Senegal to Georgetown, Guyana!

Whew! Can you imagine doing that yourself - alone, 70 days!
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Click here to track Katie

“Welcome to Guyana!”

Katie finishes her Atlantic row

“Welcome to Guyana” – a sentence I’d been waiting to hear for 70 days, 5 hours and 22 minutes!

After the interviews and welcoming party, we made our way to the Princess Hotel and I was handed a pina colada and shown to my room where I discovered the next wonder. A bed. A bed where I didn’t have to worry about being run down by freighters. A bed where I didn’t have to gasp for air as the night wore on. A bed where I could sleep for a whole night without constantly being thrown into the wall by a rogue wave.

Once I found out a casino was attached to the hotel, my brother and I made our way there to see if my head would explode from sensory overload! Luckily, it didn’t, for I seem to have found my head in the clouds again; this time literally.

But you can hear about that another time. I’ve got a boat to tidy up for shipping, and a plane to catch to take me on the next adventure.

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Snap, Crunch, Kit Kat and Deforestation!

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Nestlé, maker of Kit Kat, uses palm oil from companies that are trashing Indonesian rainforests, threatening the livelihoods of local people and pushing orang-utans towards extinction.

We all deserve to have a break - but having one shouldn't involve taking a bite out of Indonesia's precious rainforests. We're asking Nestlé to give rainforests and orang-utans a break and stop buying palm oil from destroyed forests.

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Michael Moore's Lament for St. Patrick's Day

Greed not green rules, it seems.
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Wednesday, March 17th, 2010

It was amazing. Every story on the front page of Tuesday's New York Times told the story of the Age of Greed during which a system known as capitalism is slowly, but surely, killing us:

  • Insurance company greed: "Millions Spent to Sway Democrats on Health Care"
  • War profiteers: "Contractors Tied to Effort to Track and Kill Militants"
  • There's no profit in repairing our infrastructure: "Repair Costs Daunting as Water Lines Crumble"
  • China, the bank: "China Uses Rules on Global Trade to Its Advantage"
  • You mean NAFTA didn't improve life in Mexico: "Two Drug Slayings in Mexico Rock US Consulate"
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    Tuesday, March 16, 2010

    Childhood Obesity: Got Ideas to Solve?

    Read what's at this site and submit your ideas to the Federal Government - grin - rather than complain later on about "their" ideas.
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    Task Force on Childhood Obesity
    This notice announces a
    request for public comments to assist the Task Force in making
    recommendations on public and private sector actions that can be taken
    to solve the problem.
    written comments must be
    submitted or postmarked on or before March 26, 2010
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    In Afghan War - Wishing is Sometimes All a Woman Can Do.

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    I Wish I Could

    When I want to cry
    I wish I could walk in the rain
    When I am unhappy
    I wish I could laugh with my friends
    When I feel alone
    I wish I could talk with someone
    When I see people going to a party
    I wish I could go to that party
    When I see my friends with new dresses
    I wish I could wear a new dress
    When I think about my future
    I wish I could do anything with my life
    When I see you near me
    I wish I could tell you I love you
    I just want to tell you
    I love you, dear…

    By Sana

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    Good work requires direction, support, timely feedback and discretion.

    The discretion or elbow room people need is to not be totally tied to intelligence from people 10 or 500, or 8,000 miles away. As they say: when in doubt trust the terrain you see rather than someone's map or plan. Still direction support and feedback first are needed to make that work. and that needs to come from someone responsible for their actions, not some hired contractor or paid informant.
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    U.S. Is Reining In Special Operations Forces in Afghanistan

    Children related to five people, including three women, who died Feb. 12 in a night raid near Gardez in Paktia Province, Afghanistan, stood at their graves last week.

    KABUL, Afghanistan — Gen. Stanley A. McChrystal, the top American commander in Afghanistan, has brought most American Special Operations forces under his direct control for the first time, out of concern over continued civilian casualties and disorganization among units in the field.

    “What happens is, sometimes at cross-purposes, you got one hand doing one thing and one hand doing the other, both trying to do the right thing but working without a good outcome,” General McChrystal said in an interview.
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    Monday, March 15, 2010

    Domestic Violence - No More Silence!

    guide to: 10 things you should know about domestic violence

    photo by Meggganhope, flickr

    Domestic violence, often referred to as a silent crime, gets little national attention despite how many lives it touches. President Barack Obama said it best when he stated, “A family’s home becomes a place of fear, hopelessness, and desperation when a woman is battered by her partner, a child witnesses the abuse of a loved one, or a senior is victimized by family members.”

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    We Bailed Out B of A so they could expand in China?

    This really sucks. Sorry for crudeness but what can I say -it makes me mad. Reminds me of when a local Bell Telephone company in Cincinnati blackmailed the city of tax cuts and "bribes" to stay downtown. Their next big news was hiring 1,000 new people in Manila. You can always trust B of A - to sell USA out!
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    BofA eyes expansion in China

    Bank of America is pondering expansion in China that could make it easier for the bank to conduct commercial banking in the fast growing nation, the Wall Street Journal reported Monday, citing sources familiar with the situation.

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    OK, Call me old fashioned but I don't take increased sales of German tanks as good news

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    Germany doubles arms exports

    But the largest buyer of German exports was Turkey, which accounted for 14 percent of the arms shipped abroad. The second- and third-largest buyers were Greece and South Africa, respectively, followed by South Korea, Spain, Austria, Italy, Malaysia, Australia and Chile.

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