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Member since: Fri Dec 19, 2003, 02:20 AM
Number of posts: 29,798

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Time for Congress to Direct Completion of NAS Nuclear Power Plant Safety Study

Is it safe to live near nuclear power?
By Alex Pavlak, Ph.D., P.E., Harry Winsor, Ph.D., John Rudesill and Norman Meadow, Ph.D.

Nuclear power development has stagnated since Three Mile Island mainly as a result of the public’s fear of radiation. This fear has real roots: ignorance of the dangers of radiation during the early years; radioactive fallout from atmospheric testing; lack of trust resulting from Cold War secrecy; and the long latency period before consequences can be diagnosed. But are these fears rational today? Is it safe to live near a waste repository, mine, or ore processing, nuclear power or fuel reprocessing plant? Only trusted epidemiological data can provide answers.

The Lifespan Study of Hiroshima & Nagasaki survivors concluded that the primary detectible long-term consequence of high radiation exposure was cancer, not genetic mutations. In 1991, Jablon et al. found “no excess cancer deaths” in U.S. counties with nuclear facilities. More recently the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) funded the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) to design an improved study to quantify cancer incidence (not mortality) near nuclear facilities. This distinction is important because incidence is much more accurate than mortality.

NRC completed Pilot Planning, and then as reported by The Hill, the NRC canceled Pilot Execution. The stated reasons were “too expensive”, and “too long to get answers.” The Pilot Execution phase’s estimated cost was $8-9 million for 7 facilities. Studying all 62+ U.S. facilities would have a larger cost, but lower unit cost, because a template will have been validated. Today’s opponents of nuclear power should strongly support the study to provide solid evidence that nuclear plants are dangerous and operators cover up accidental releases. Proponents of nuclear power should support it to provide convincing specific data that nuclear facilities can be operated safely. People living anywhere near nuclear facilities should support it because it addresses fears that have been too often ignored.

The NAS has a good reputation for unbiased, independent scientific study. The Research Committee is in place. NAS policy is that once the study is funded the sponsor cannot influence it. Internationally, such studies are fragmented and many are suspect; there are no comparable large scale studies.


...The world needs a template for how to efficiently conduct such studies and keep them up to date. It is time for Congress, to step up and get this process started.

I don't care where you come down on the issue, I think we can all agree this study should be completed.

General background for the primary - Exit poll discrepancies in Kerry v Bush 2004

Graduate Division, School of Arts & Sciences Center for Organizational Dynamics
Working Paper #04-09
November 15, 2004
The Unexplained Exit Poll Discrepancy
Steven F. Freeman, PhD


Please read and bookmark for reference. I suspect it is going to be a part of the discussion.

12:30 EST update Earned Delegate Count Clinton: 526 Sanders: 325

Super-delegates can be seen at link


1AM update: C 543 S 349
1PM update C 576 S 386

Strong endorsement for Bernie from war weary veteran

Interview from yesterdays Morning Joe show

Rep Tulsi Gabbard Resigns DNC Post to Endorse Bernie Sanders

Melissa Harris-Perry Walks Off Her MSNBC Show After Pre-emptions

Source: NYT

In an unusually public flare-up, one of MSNBC’s television personalities clashed with the network on Friday in a dispute about airtime and editorial freedom and said she was refusing to host the show that bears her name this weekend.

The host, Melissa Harris-Perry, wrote in an email to co-workers this week that her show had effectively been taken away from her and that she felt “worthless” in the eyes of NBC News executives, who are restructuring MSNBC.

“Here is the reality: Our show was taken — without comment or discussion or notice — in the midst of an election season,” she wrote in the email, which became public on Friday. “After four years of building an audience, developing a brand and developing trust with our viewers, we were effectively and utterly silenced.”

In a phone interview, Ms. Harris-Perry confirmed she would not appear on the show this weekend. She said she had received no word about whether her show, which runs from 10 a.m. to noon on Saturdays and Sundays, had been canceled, but said she was frustrated that her time slot had faced pre-emptions for coverage of the presidential election. She said she had not appeared on the network at all “for weeks” and that she was mostly sidelined during recent election coverage in South Carolina and New Hampshire. (She was asked to return this weekend.)

In her email...

Read more: http://www.nytimes.com/2016/02/27/business/media/melissa-harris-perry-walks-off-her-msnbc-show-after-pre-emptions.html

There has been a great deal of discussion not only on DU but nationally, about the election-related shift in programming by MSNBC. From MHP's blog post we are getting a glimpse of the confirming reality:

Some unknown decision-maker, presumably Andy Lack or Phil Griffin, has added my name to this spreadsheet, but nothing has changed in the posture of the MSNBC leadership team toward me or toward our show. Putting me on air seems to be a decision being made solely to save face because there is a growing chorus of questions from our viewers about my notable absence from MSNBC coverage. Social media has noted the dramatic change in editorial tone and racial composition of MSNBC’s on-air coverage. In addition, Dylan Byers of CNN has made repeated inquiries with MSNBC’s leadership and with me about the show and what appears to be its cancellation. I have not responded to reporters or social media inquiries. However, I am not willing to appear on air in order to quell concerns about the disappearance of our show and our voice.


What was Obama thinking? Some unsettling blowback from the Iran deal.

Iran’s Moderates Face a Major Challenge in First Elections Since the Nuclear Deal
Iran's reformists, moderate and even conservatives have united to blunt the power of hardliners in parliamentary and religious elections

Kay Armin Serjoie/Tehran 4:59 PM ET

As Iran gets ready to hold its first major elections since the historic nuclear deal reached with world powers last year, the political landscape has undergone an unprecedented shakeup as reformists, moderates and even conservatives—who usually compete against each other—have essentially united to confront the hardliners who have controlled Iran’s internal politics for most of the last decade.

The elections on Feb. 26—which are for both the parliament as well as the Experts Assembly, the body tasked with choosing Iran’s next supreme leader—are historic, in large part because they are the first polls to take place since the implementation of the Iran nuclear deal. With that agreement and the lifting of sanctions, Iran is poised to reenter the international community—and every political faction wants to have a say in what path the Islamic Republic will take.

But what’s even more notable is that, for the first time, a wide range of political groups have united in the purpose of preventing hardliners from getting elected—even if they have to learn to live with other factions that until now they have always opposed. “For example when you look at the reformist list of candidates you can see it is a list out of necessity, not choice, the list has no common identity,” says Abdullah Ganji, managing director of Javan Daily and a political analyst. “On one hand you have Mohammadreza Aref, a reformist who believes that the parliament’s first duty is to pursue the termination of the house arrest [of Green Movement Leaders Mir Hossein Mousavi and Mehdi Karroubi]. In the other hand you have Kazem Jalali, a principalist who has officially called for the death sentence for these two, they have welcomed anyone who opposes the Paydari Front”—the main and foremost hardline political faction in Iran’s present-day political spectrum....

Hey y'all, look! MY PRESIDENT did that!

1/2 of Clinton’s 2014 Speaking Fees Came From Groups Also Lobbying Congress

We don't need transcripts to know that this is morally reprehensible.

Half of Hillary Clinton’s Speaking Fees Came From Groups Also Lobbying Congress
Philip Elliott

Groups with giant lobbying budgets gave Clinton big speaking fees ahead of 2016 presidential campaign

Almost half of the money from Hillary Clinton’s speaking engagements came from corporations and advocacy groups that were lobbying Congress at the same time.

The Democratic presidential candidate earned $10.2 million in 2014, her first full calendar year after leaving the State Department. Of that, $4.6 million came from groups that also spent on lobbying Congress that year, according to data compiled by the nonpartisan Center for Responsive Politics....

...Asked Tuesday if there were conflicts of interest in speaking to these groups, Clinton was curt with reporters in Cedar Falls, Iowa. “No,” she said.

“Obviously, Bill and I have been blessed and we’re very grateful for the opportunities that we had...


Great chart at article

Tough question for HRC team - is health care a basic human right or not?

Bernie and plenty of his supporters have stated that they believe it is, but so far there hasn't even been any Hillary supporters willing to state a position.

So how about letting us know your views. The claim is out there that the only difference between HRC and Bernie on Health Care is the process of change, but I don't think it is. I believe it, like virtually all other differences in this struggle, goes to a fundamental disagreement on values related to the worth of human life.

Edited to change wording from"basic right" to "basic human right".
My apologies to oasis for thinking she/he was evading my point.

I listened to about 20min of Hannity interviewing Trump tonight.

It's a strange by-product of this election but I find my TV is, for the first time ever, occasionally tuned (low low volume mode while I putter around) into Fox.** Tonight I turned on the sound for an interview Hannity was doing with Trump and I watched it long enough to actually listen to how DT handles probing. I have to say that he is an extremely skilled deflector, delayer and hint thrower - it's a style I've never seen.
I was most intrigued by the line of questioning that was just emerging when I tuned in - healthcare. Trump did the standard R cost attack against it, and then hit all the talking points as he dissed obamacare and promised to start repealing it the instant he took office. Then he went into a humanist mode and kept repeating lines built around a big "BUT" - the theme was we can't let people die in the street. When pressed what he'd do, he diverted to a monologue on something but maybe 3 minutes later they eventually came back to health care and went down the same path again
- kill obamacare, replace it, it's high cost care, with high cost drugs, highest drug cost in the world highest health care cost in world, kill obamacare, high cost, most expensive in world

...... then ....

he's self-funding, offered millions from insurance companies, self funding don't need it, can't let people die in street

..... then ....

he says "I'll have the best health care for every one and I'll negotiate right, that obama can't negotiate with anyone except traitor republicans in congress, I'll do it right, best health care in the world and I'll save money doing it..."

Then he changes the subject and diverts the topic.

He is promising single payer.
The man is selling the Republican rank and file on single payer health care. The above narrative is illustrative only and I probably use one word to his 50 and one I left out that he threw in maybe twice what medicare.

From his "I opposed the Iraq War" starting point for skewering Shrub, to the health care issue, to the focus on money in politics and the corrupted nature of the system, he is mirroring Bernies message.

I can't imagine he thinks he can get elected with his bombastic rhetoric and the thought of him as president and commander in chief is intolerable, but I really, really can't wait to see where in the hell he will be with this realty show in 4 months.

I don't know why he is pitching Bernies agenda, but he unquestionably is. I can think of half a dozen convoluted possible but definitely not plausible scenarios. What I can't help but do while I speculate though, is admire the chutzpah of taking a liberal social agenda into the lions den.

This election season is f*&cking insane.

ETA an explanation for the ** above. I'm furious at MSNBC for shutting out Bernie. At least 80% of that anger is brought on by the feeling that I've been betrayed by people there who I trusted to be honest brokers. When that gets to me I flip to Fox where I have no illusions going in - I know they are going to lie to me and there is no trust to betray. I never thought I'd say it but that strategy - of tuning in Fox News, is actually lowering my blood pressure. So let me repeat with an exclamation point:
This election season is f*&cking insane!
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