And they come with no warning,
nature loves her little surprises.
Continual crisis!

Monday, November 11, 2019

Linkee-poo looks at all the poppies

"Donald Trump Jr. stormed out of an event promoting his new book yesterday after he was heckled by a protester and supporters angered by his refusal to take questions." Heckled from the left and the right.

"Archaeologists have uncovered a viking grave with two bodies in two boats, buried one hundred years apart." (Grokked from Dr Caitlin Green)

"A Virginia doctor allegedly performed hysterectomies and tied a patient's fallopian tubes without consent, federal authorities said in court documents." Monsters sometimes wear white coats.

"'Mindfulness, cognitive behavioral therapy and clinical hypnosis appear to be the most useful for reducing pain,' says study author Eric Garland, a professor at the University of Utah. The reductions in dose were modest overall, he says, but the study is a signal that this approach is beneficial."

"A group of former students from five of Detroit’s worst-performing public schools is suing the Michigan Department of Education and Democratic Gov. Gretchen Whitmer for their constitutional right to access literacy."

"Melissa Reeves, a professor at Winthrop University and former president of the National Association of School Psychologists, talked with NPR's Lulu Garcia-Navarro about changes in how school shooting drills are carried out and her concerns about how drills can impact the psychological development of young children." With tornado or fire drills, nobody comes along with a tornado or sets fire to the schools. However, in "active shooter drills" the active shooter part is sometimes acted out.

"This is a film shoot held by Athena Security. It’s one of several companies creating artificial intelligence software to identify weapons. AI requires a lot of data to learn what is a gun — and what isn’t. But there aren’t enough images in the public domain of people holding weapons, and very few are from the perspective of security cameras. So Athena is creating its own data by filming the footage itself." Uhh... Not sure this is what we should be doing. Including the part about the robot. But I'm sure it will totally not malfunction or misidentify threats. Also note, they're trying to teach the machine learning algorithm how to spot a gun, but there's very little consideration on teaching it how to correctly identify things that are not guns.

"On Earth, helium is generated deep underground through the natural radioactive decay of elements such as uranium and thorium. 'It takes many, many millennia to make the helium that's here on the Earth,' says Sophia Hayes, a chemist at Washington University in St. Louis. The helium seeps up through the Earth's crust and gets trapped in pockets of natural gas, where it can be extracted."

"A US financial regulator has opened an investigation into claims Apple's credit card offered different credit limits for men and women." Oopsie.

"Investors have recently put fears about the pace of global growth aside, opting for optimism on a 'phase one' US-China trade deal. But muted economic data expected out of Europe this week could change the mood."

"The British economy avoided falling into recession in the third quarter of the year, but annual growth is running at a near-decade low rate as a result of ongoing uncertainty related to Britain’s departure from the European Union and a subdued global backdrop, official figures showed Monday."

"But those who vaped, the study found, had higher levels of unhealthy LDL cholesterol, on average, compared with nonsmokers. And levels of healthy HDL cholesterol were lower among people who used both traditional and e-cigarettes." Welcome to the autonomic nervous system's para-sympathetic side. As I've stated on twitter, all vaping is is changing your drug pusher. Some people have used e-cigs to wean themselves from nicotine, and that's great for them. However, if your vape juice contains nicotine, claiming you've stopped smoking is like saying because you now rub cocaine on your gums instead of snorting it that you've kicked the habit. Vaping is "safer" only the aspect that it's less likely to burn your bed/chair/house down.

"The water is already low at a Florida freshwater spring, but Nestlé wants more." You may remember Nestlé's CEO who once said that potable water is not a human right.

"May 27, 2018… It’s Memorial Day weekend. It has been 22 months since the flood… There is rain in the forecast." There will come soft rains. One of the problems of climate change… we're living in the wrong places. I suggest looking at this link on a computer, I'm not sure you can get the impact of the layout on a phone. It is intensely video and photo oriented, but besides the subject, I'm sharing the link in the vein of, "this is how you can tell stories on the internet." Well done, NPR.

"If you're serving a life sentence but momentarily 'die' and are then resuscitated, does that mean you can walk free?… That's what a convicted murderer is claiming in Iowa. He says he's been in prison for four years too long. But on Wednesday, a three-judge panel of the Court of Appeals of Iowa gave that idea a firm no." Okay, so I know this is a popular story about how people have died and were brought back. There is no coming back from death. What is more accurate description of what is happening is you are in the process of dying and that process is reversed, or the condition causing the impending death is corrected.

"The self-driving Uber SUV involved in a crash that killed a Tempe, Ariz., woman last year did not recognize her as a jaywalking pedestrian and its braking system was not designed to avoid an imminent collision, according to a federal report released this week… 'The system design did not include a consideration for jaywalking pedestrians,' the report said." AI my ass.

"The Environmental Working Group has found that high levels of perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) and other perfluorinated chemicals (PFAS) have been detected in tap water at Trump National Golf Course in Bedminister, New Jersey. PFAS are often called 'forever chemicals,' because they don't break down once they enter the environment and can cause build-up in the blood and organs of people exposed to them. President Donald Trump has frequently used the private club for meetings with public officials and referred to the compound as 'the summer White House.'" Maybe we shouldn't eat the rich. They're probably toxic. Betcha they have a filtration system in place by next summer. Meanwhile in Flint, Michigan… (Grokked from Dan)

How goes Brexit? "In a major shift, Brexit Party leader Nigel Farage said Monday his party will not run against Conservative candidates in almost half of the U.K. seats available in Britain’s Dec. 12 election to make sure it doesn’t split the pro-Brexit vote." Facing a loss for their own ideology, they decided not to cut off their own noses.

"Denmark will temporarily reinstate border controls with Sweden and step up police work along the border after a series of violent crimes and explosions around Copenhagen that Danish authorities say were carried out by perpetrators from Sweden."

"Evo Morales has stepped down as Bolivia's president after the military encouraged him to leave the post to ensure stability following weeks of protests against his disputed re-election." Probably the nicest coup ever.

And now to Hong Kong… "A Hong Kong anti-government protester was shot by police Monday… Elsewhere, a man was set on fire following an apparent dispute over national identity in the semi-autonomous Chinese territory, which has been wracked by five months of protests. The man was in critical condition in a city hospital."

"As first reported by NY1 Noticias, the armored personnel carrier was spotted Wednesday morning on Forest Avenue near Norman Street in Ridgewood. Agents wearing ICE jackets were seen standing around the street, as a gunner stood watch in the middle of the vehicle." Look at all the little kids playing soldier. Unfortunately they're carrying real weapons and engaging in a terror operation. (Grokked from Steven Brust)

"The Supreme Court will have the fate of these four DREAMers and some 660,000 others in its hands Tuesday when it considers the Trump administration's decision to end the DACA program, which has provided a reprieve for some undocumented immigrants brought to the United States as children. A ruling on the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program is expected next spring in the midst of the 2020 presidential election."

"Nardini’s confirmation is a terrifying new milestone for Trump: One out of every four judges at the circuit court level is now a Trump appointee. Here’s another statistic: In less than three years, Trump has appointed 45 appeals-court judges, while President Obama appointed 55 appellate judges in his eight years in office. The explanation for Trump’s success is the same for Obama’s failure to appoint more: Mitch McConnell." Stacking the court. (Grokked from Saladin Ahmed)

"Giuliani forgot my name almost immediately, but we kept in touch… Two days after publication, on the evening he attended a Yankees playoff game with Alan Dershowitz, Giuliani — President Donald Trump’s 75-year-old informal cybersecurity adviser — accidentally texted me what appeared to be a password: Eight characters, beginning with the name of a networking company and including a capital letter, a special character, and a number. Multiple IT experts confirmed it could be nothing else, and, given the iPhone’s messaging setup, impossible to type with your butt or in any other unwitting way." Giuliani's blunders are the new Kremlinology.

"A lawyer for Rudy Giuliani's indicted associate Lev Parnas said Giuliani directed Parnas to issue an ultimatum earlier this year to a representative of incoming Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, warning him that if the new government didn't announce an investigation into Joe Biden, the US would freeze military aid and Vice President Mike Pence would not attend Zelensky's inauguration." It's like a race to see who will thrown whom under the bus.

"For news audiences, key details about the Ukraine affair have been told, so far, twice: First, in leaked and preliminary accounts of what witnesses told investigators behind closed doors, then in the full transcripts released last week of their depositions… This week, some witnesses will tell their stories for a third time, in open hearings scheduled before the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence." Keep saying it until people understand.

"Trump has spent weeks questioning the whistleblower's motives and slamming the account for being inaccurate. But as this annotation shows, most of the complaint has been corroborated during closed-door depositions of administration officials, through public statements and from a rough transcript of the call itself, released by the White House."

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