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Gender: Male
Hometown: Northern California
Member since: Wed Nov 17, 2010, 01:02 PM
Number of posts: 11,665

Journal Archives

The 85-Year-Old Nun Who Went to Prison for Embarrassing the Feds Is Finally Free

Sister Megan Rice, the 85-year-old activist nun who two years ago humiliated government officials by penetrating and vandalizing a supposedly ultra-high-security uranium storage facility, has finally been released from prison. A federal appeals court on Friday overturned the 2013 sabotage convictions of Rice and two fellow anti-nuclear activists, Michael Walli, 66, and Greg Boertje-Obed, 59, ruling that that their actions—breaking into Tennessee's Y-12 National Security Complex and spreading blood on a uranium storage bunker—did not harm national security.

More here: http://www.motherjones.com/blue-marble/2015/05/megan-rice-85-year-old-nun-released-prison-nuclear-weapons
Posted by Playinghardball | Tue May 19, 2015, 03:31 PM (1 replies)

Bernie: If Teddy Roosevelt were alive today he'd tell us to "break them up."

Posted by Playinghardball | Tue May 19, 2015, 03:20 PM (3 replies)

Must read: Shell Oil’s Cold Calculations for a Warming World..

Last week, when the Obama administration gave tentative approval to Shell Oil’s plan to return to the Arctic after its disastrous attempt to find oil there in 2012, I found myself thinking of a conversation I had several years ago with a man named Jeremy Bentham. A theater-loving Englishman, Bentham leads Shell’s legendary team of futurists, whose methods have been adopted by the Walt Disney Company and the Pentagon, among others.

The scenario planners, as they call themselves, are paid to think unconventional thoughts. They read fiction. They run models. They talk to hippies. They talk to scientists. They consult anyone who can imagine surprising, abrupt change. The competing versions of the future — the scenarios — that result from this process are packaged as stories and given evocative titles: “Belle Époque,” “Devolution,” “Prism.” Then the oil company readies itself, as best it can, for all of them.

Over the course of almost half a century, Bentham’s predecessors in the scenario-planning group helped Shell foresee and prepare for events like the fall of the Soviet Union, the rise of Islamic extremism and the birth of the anti-globalization movement. More recently — before California’s historic drought — the team focused on water scarcity. And long before most other oil companies, Shell’s scenario planners helped the company understand that climate change was a strategic and scientific reality.

In early 2008, weeks before Shell bid a record-breaking $2.1 billion on oil leases in the melting Arctic Ocean — the basis for the newly approved drilling plan — the company’s futurists released a new pair of scenarios describing the next 40 years on Earth. They were based on what Bentham called “three hard truths”: That energy demand, thanks in part to booming China and India, would only rise; that supply would struggle to keep up; and that climate change was dangerously real. Shell’s internal research showed that alternative energy systems — wind, solar, carbon capture — would take decades to make just a 1-percent dent in our massive global energy system, even if they grew at 25 percent a year. “It takes them 30 years to just begin to start becoming material,” Bentham explained to me.

One scenario, called “Blueprints,” painted a moderately hopeful vision of green energy and concerted action within the constraints of technological change, of a swiftly rising price on carbon emissions as the world comes together to remake its energy systems. In this vision of the future, there is active carbon trading. There is a strong global climate treaty. There is still far more warming than society can easily bear — approaching 7 degrees Fahrenheit — but the world still averts the very worst of climate change.

More here: http://www.nytimes.com/2015/05/18/magazine/shell-oils-cold-calculations-for-a-warming-world.html?_r=1
Posted by Playinghardball | Tue May 19, 2015, 03:07 PM (0 replies)

Remember what it was like to have a Republican in the White House...

Posted by Playinghardball | Tue May 19, 2015, 11:13 AM (1 replies)

Luckovich: GOP Presidential Debate

Posted by Playinghardball | Tue May 19, 2015, 10:58 AM (4 replies)

Will Rogers on “trickle up” economics

Posted by Playinghardball | Mon May 18, 2015, 03:45 PM (1 replies)

You Won’t Believe How 3D Printing Helped This Turtle

Technology is pretty awesome. Sure, it gives us toys whose obsolescence is already planned well in advance and creates a culture of people fascinated by gadgets.

But it also gives us the ability to save lives that would have been lost in a previous era. A case in point is this sea turtle. It was brought practically lifeless in to the Sea Turtle Research, Rescue, and Rehabilitation Center at Pamukkale University in Turkey. The turtle was missing almost all of its lower jaw from an apparent collision with a propeller. It was lucky to be alive. Vets brought AKUT3–as the turtle became known–back to health slowly, but the jaw injuries were too severe for the 100-pound animal to be put back into the wild.

Enter a company specializing in designing and printing 3D prosthetics. For free, the company made models of AKUT3’s skull and used them to make titanium implants that would allow the animal to eat again without assistance.

AKUT3 then went into a lengthy surgery and emerged in shape. Two weeks later, it had not rejected the implants and is now thought to be the first turtle to use 3D prosthetics.

Now that’s using science for good. Amazing.

Posted by Playinghardball | Mon May 18, 2015, 03:34 PM (7 replies)

This person nails it....

Posted by Playinghardball | Mon May 18, 2015, 03:28 PM (10 replies)

Today's news from Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.):

News May 18

Monday, May 18, 2015

Senator Sanders

Tuition-Free College Sen. Sanders will introduce legislation on Tuesday to make college tuition-free in the United States, the New Hampshire Union Leader and the Valley News in West Lebanon, New Hampshire, reported. The bill also would substantially lower student debt and bring down interest rates on college loans, MSNBC, WCAX-TV and WVNY-TV reported.


Obama’s New War Powers Push Stalls in Congress A move to write new war powers to authorize the Obama administration's 9-month-old battle against Islamic State militants has stalled in Congress. It might even be dead. And while lawmakers say they don't want to give up their check on a commander-in-chief's authority to use military might, they have little interest in having what would be the first war vote in Congress in 13 years, AP reported.


Patriot Act Stalemate A stalemate in the Senate would leave the FBI and National Security Agency without powers they have used to track terrorists for years, say supporters of the Patriot Act. Without action by the end of the month, key provisions of the Patriot Act will expire, The Hill reported.
VA’s Hiring Effort is ‘Seriously Fractured’ Agency understaffing was a key flaw exposed during last year’s scandal over the cover-up of long patient wait times at the Department of Veterans Affairs. It has too few health-care employees to timely serve the wounded warriors and others among its clientele. Congress and President Obama reacted by approving $5 billion to hire medical professionals. A House Veterans Affairs’ health subcommittee hearing Friday revealed differences, perhaps it’s really competition, among the groups of health care staffer organizations, each of which say VA needs more of its kind, The Washington Post reported.

Labor Gives Clinton Pass on Trade Labor unions are fighting hard to defeat legislation that would authorize sped-up consideration of a trade agreement being negotiated with 11 Pacific Rim nations. However, they are giving Mrs. Clinton the kind of breathing room they aren’t affording congressional Democrats or even the president., according to The New York Times.

Posted by Playinghardball | Mon May 18, 2015, 01:51 PM (2 replies)

Bernie Sanders: President Franklin D. Roosevelt

Posted by Playinghardball | Mon May 18, 2015, 01:45 PM (2 replies)
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