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Shipment of Ice Cream Successfully Launched to the ISS
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
here are frozen fruit bars, ice cream bars, ice cream sandwiches and cups of chocolate and vanilla ice cream — about 80 in all, according to NASA.
The Trump Administration Pitched Coal at a Climate Change Conference
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
But conference attendees are applauding a coalition of U.S. mayors and governors fighting global warming
In Morocco, a blue tourist town is turning green
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
Huddling against a hillside in northern Morocco is a tourist town famed for the striking blue of its buildings, and now the mayor is mixing in another colour -- green. Chefchaouen -- known locally as Chaouen -- wants to become a model for sustainable development at a time when the northwest African kingdom has shone a spotlight onto its commitment to the environment and a greener future. Mohamed Sefiani, mayor of the town of some 45,000 residents where visitors come to admire hundreds of hues of blue, says Chefchaouen began to go green more than seven years ago.
Scientists warn of 'giant leap backward' at climate talks
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
Carbon dioxide emissions are set to rise this year after a three-year pause, scientists said at UN climate talks Monday, warning that "time is running out", even as White House officials used the occasion to champion the fossil fuels that drive global warming. CO2 emissions, flat since 2014, were forecast to rise two percent in 2017, dashing hopes they had peaked, scientists reported at 12-day negotiations in the German city of Bonn ending Friday. "The news that emissions are rising after a three-year hiatus is a giant leap backward for humankind," said Amy Luers, a climate policy advisor to Barack Obama and executive director of Future Earth, which co-sponsored the research.
Harvey's 'Biblical' rainfall is getting more likely
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
WASHINGTON (AP) — The chances of a hurricane flooding parts of Texas, like Harvey did, have soared sixfold in just 25 years because of global warming and will likely triple once again before the end of the century, a new study says.
India gives 'king of sweets' a geographical tag to end bitter rivalry
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, odd news
India has awarded a "geographical indications" tag to rosogolla, the king of Indian sweets, after a years-long battle between two neighboring states over the ownership rights. Luscious rosogolla, or sweet cheese balls dripping with sugar syrup, have long been a favorite dessert across the Indian subcontinent and among the diaspora.
School worksheet quizzed students on 'boy toy,' affairs
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, odd news
HOPEWELL, Va. (AP) — Middle school students in a Virginia home economics class were mistakenly given a worksheet that quizzed them on what an extramarital affair is as well as "boy toy" and "trophy wife."
Man detained after Danish police crack public bench thefts
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, odd news
COPENHAGEN, Denmark (AP) — Police in Denmark says a man is suspected of stealing 12 of Copenhagen's green public benches that Danes instantly associate with the capital city.
Mystery 'Shadow Patch' in Pacific Hasn't Moved For 1,000 Years And Scientists Finally Know Why
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
One patch of water in the center of the Pacific Ocean has remained virtually motionless for the past 1,000 years. Now, a recent study published online in Nature has uncovered some of the secrets of this mysterious "shadow zone," revealing not only why it has remained still for so long, but also what the ocean looked like half a millennium ago. Water moves a lot, and pretty fast actually, with some currents moving around 5.6 miles per hour, but the "shadow zone" in the North Pacific Ocean is different.
Is Joe Biden Running for President in 2020? Here's Why It Probably Won't Happen
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
A moment back in the spotlight doesn't erase his weaknesses
12 More Frat Brothers Charged in Penn State Hazing Death After Deleted Video Recovered
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
"We all have proof of what happened on tape"
Suitcase of sapphires and other gems worth 1 million pounds stolen from London train
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, odd news
British police were hunting for an unidentified man on Tuesday after a suitcase containing 1 million pounds ($1.3 million) worth of gems was stolen from a luggage rack on a train at London's Euston station. The owner, a 35-year-old jewelry dealer, boarded a train to Birmingham on Nov. 8 but when the train arrived at Rugby in central England, he discovered that his suitcase of rubies, emeralds and sapphires was no longer on the luggage rack. Police released a grainy image of a man who they said they would like to speak to.
Here's Another Reason Bonobo 'Hippie Chimps' Are Awesome
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
These predominantly peaceful primates — sometimes called "hippie chimps," as they are known to be less aggressive and more altruistic than chimpanzees — tend to look out for one another and even share their food. Researchers recently found that bonobos would help unfamiliar bonobos reach a food reward, even when they didn't receive a reward themselves. "Trust," the scientists wrote in a new study, "is fundamental to social life." Modern human societies are built on trust that we often extend to people who are unfamiliar to us, a behavior known as xenophilia.
Trump administration tried to promote fossil fuels at global climate meeting. It didn't go well.
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
A Trump administration attempt to offer fossil fuels as a solution to climate change was subject to protest and walkouts on Monday at U.N. climate talks in Bonn. Representatives of the fossil fuel industry said they wanted to be part of the conversation and sat through intense questioning and heckling from media and protesters in the room. The bitterness that has divided the U.S. since the election of Donald Trump arrived in Bonn, when around a hundred mostly American climate protestors disrupted the event, with song, heckling and protest banners. SEE ALSO: The U.S. is now the only country opposed to the Paris Climate Agreement “You claim to be an American,” the protesters sang at a panel including George David Banks, President Trump’s special energy assistant, and moderated by vice president Mike Pence’s assistant Francis Brooke. Natural gas, coal and nuclear companies were also represented. As they marched out of the room, they were joined by hundreds of other demonstrators that had not been able to get in. The panel sat quietly through the protest before launching into a defense of the role of various forms of fossil energy in climate mitigation, in front of a half empty room. Fossil fuels, including high efficiency coal and carbon capture and storage, “were vital” to achieving the goals of the Paris deal, said Holly Krutka, vice president of coal generation and emissions technologies from Peabody Energy. Banks said: “This panel is only controversial if we choose to bury our heads in the sand and ignore the realities of a global energy system.” He repeatedly said he was in Bonn to talk openly. When asked later by Climate Home News if the administration held the policy that the 2-degree Celsius, or 3.6-degree Fahrenheit, warming target from the Paris deal needed to be avoided, he said: “I actually don’t know that means.” Trump announced that the U.S. would quit the Paris pact in a Rose Garden Speech last June, although no exit will be possible before November 2020. When pushed on their position on Trump’s Paris withdrawal, two of the six panelists – the gas and nuclear representatives – said they disagreed, Krutka demurred, Barry Worthington, executive director of the US Energy Association said he agreed. The administration officials both refused to answer, although Banks is widely understood to have pushed for Trump to stay inside the Paris deal. On the Paris deal, Banks said: “We’re part of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change and climate mitigation is an important goal of the US but… I don’t think it's any surprise that economic prosperity is a higher priority. When the president looks at the Paris Agreement and climate policy in general, he looks through the lens of what effect does this have on us manufacturing and competitiveness.” Amos Hochstein, senior vice president of marketing at LNG company Tellurian said he had served in the Obama administration: “I’m very proud of that. I disagree with a lot of people on this panel but I’m here anyway and if we really care about clean air and climate change we have to stop siloing ourselves into communities where we only talk to ourselves.” The reaction from within the conference in Bonn has been muted, with many trying to ignore the event. “This is a sideshow, the real world is not paying any attention,” said Jay Inslee, governor of Washington, who made a statement to the press before the event began. When asked whether coal could be part of the solution to climate change, Frank Bainimarama, the Fijian prime minister and COP23 president, told reporters: “I really don’t want to get into an argument with the United States of America, but we all know what coal does and we all know the effects of coal mining and of coal.” “There is really no need to talk about coal because we all know what coal does with regard to climate change,” he added. Patrick Gomes, the head of the African, Caribbean and Pacific group of 79 nations said that the U.S. meeting was “a diversion, unfortunately” from the urgent task of climate mitigation and adaptation. “It has more of a commercial side to it than an ecological or environmental concern,” he told Climate Home News. “It is regrettable [that the US] still wants to bring to the fore commercial incentives and issues that take precedence over humanity.” US negotiators have kept a low profile at the Bonn summit, raising their heads above the parapet only to support likeminded countries in trying to limit the practical scope and range of the Paris agreement. US touting coal for the world at #COP23. People…have other thoughts. Sit-in happening outside the event. pic.twitter.com/SMTKa27dNs — theotherclimateNaomi (@cptnplanette) November 13, 2017 “They haven’t caused any trouble,” one climate negotiator said. “The role that they played under the Obama administration is definitely missed and in that sense its troubling not to have them alongside us on many issues.” Another former government official said that Trigg Talley, the leader of the US delegation would be feeling “terrible, of course” about what he was being asked to do. “Representing the Trump administration on climate must be the worst thing in the world,” the ex-official said. The European Union, which was holding talks with China and Canada while the event went on, refused to comment on the meeting. WATCH: Los Angeles is painting their roads white to cool the city down and improve air quality
Roy Moore Fires Back at Mitch McConnell After Majority Leader Says 'I Believe' Accusers
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
Several women have said Moore pursued relationships with them when they were teenagers
Jeff Flake: There Is 'No Doubt' I'd Support a Democrat Over Roy Moore
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
The Republican Arizona senator added that he would back calls to expel Moore if elected
Race Car Driver, 8, Dies After Slamming Her Car into Cement Barrier
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
“Sadly this one in a million event happened to us, to our little girl," her father said
Sydney ferry named Ferry McFerryface after 'Boaty' overruled
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, odd news
SYDNEY (AP) — The last ferry in a new Sydney Harbor fleet will be christened Ferry McFerryface — Sydney's second favorite choice after the now famous jokey Mc-moniker, Boaty McBoatface.
Bill Gates Just Made a Massive Investment in Alzheimer's Disease Research
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
The Microsoft co-founder is lending his resources to improving treatments for the brain disorder
Ancient Humans and Stolen Bones: Major Controversy Raises Doubt About History of Human Evolution in Europe
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
A team of scientists have drawn headlines over the past few years for a series of papers asserting that early humans made their way to northern Europe a million years ago. The authors of the new paper include the current head of excavations at Untermassfeld, a rich deposit of animal fossils that are about a million years old.
Fifth Accuser Says Roy Moore Sexually Assaulted Her As a Teenager
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
When she was 15 and 16
Nanotech, gene editing used to edit cholesterol gene: U.S. study
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
By Julie Steenhuysen CHICAGO (Reuters) - U.S. researchers have used nanotechnology plus the powerful CRISPR-Cas9 gene editing tool to turn off a key cholesterol-related gene in mouse liver cells, an advance that could lead to new ways to correct genes that cause high cholesterol and other liver diseases. Nanotechnology is the design and manipulation of materials thousands of times smaller than the width of a human hair. “We’ve shown you can make a nanoparticle that can be used to permanently and specifically edit the DNA in the liver of an adult animal,” said study author Daniel Anderson, an associate professor in chemical engineering at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
15 People Have Caught Fire and 5 Have Died After Being Tasered Near Flammable Materials
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
Over the course of 24 years
Tesla, SpaceX Director Jurvetson on Leave After Misconduct Claims
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
Steve Jurvetson resigned from his venture capital firm DFJ and took a leave of absence from the boards of Tesla Inc. and Space Exploration Technologies Corp. after claims of misconduct against him. He ...
Peggy Whitson: 2017 Glamour Woman of the Year
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
The astronaut reveals what it was like to see earth from space.
Ancient Artifact Proves Humans Have Been Drinking Wine for at Least 8,000 Years
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
Humans, according to new discoveries in the Republic of Georgia, have been drinking wine for 8,000 years—about 600 to 1,000 years longer than previously believed. Excavations by the Gadachrili Gora Regional Archaeological Project Expedition (yes, their acronym is GRAPE) in a collaboration between University of Toronto and the Georgian National Museum have discovered ancient jars coated with chemical evidence of winemaking. The jars were discovered at two early ceramic Neolithic sites called the Gadachrili Gora and Shulaveri Gora, which are about 30 miles south of Georgia’s capital, Tbilisi.
Novice surfer masters a pro move: Punching a shark to escape
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, odd news
CANBERRA, Australia (AP) — A novice surfer mastered a pro's move on the first try: He punched a shark on the nose to escape its jaws.
President Trump Names Drug Company Executive to His Cabinet
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
Azar was an executive at pharmaceutical giant Eli Lilly
Talk about vintage: Pottery shards show 8,000
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
NEW YORK (AP) — Talk about vintage wine: Pieces of broken pottery found in the nation of Georgia provide the earliest known evidence for the origins of today's winemaking industry.
Orbital ATK launches eighth cargo mission to space
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
Orbital ATK's barrel-shaped Cygnus cargo ship launched atop an Antares rocket at 7:19 am (1219 GMT), a day after a last-second delay due to an unexpected aircraft in the area. "Five, four, three, two, one and we have ignition," said Orbital ATK's mission control operator, as the rocket's engines lit up the chilly, gray morning and cheers erupted from spectators near the launch site. The mission is the eighth for Orbital ATK, which has a $1.9 billion contract with NASA to resupply the orbiting outpost.
Roy Moore Says the Underage Sex Allegations Are 'Fake News' and He'll File a Lawsuit in Response
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
The Washington Post story quoted four women by name and had two dozen other sources
Could Roy Moore become the first U.S. senator expelled since the Civil War?
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, politics
Sen. Cory Gardner said the Senate should expel Alabama Senate candidate Roy Moore if he's elected. Could Moore be seated if he manages to win despite the growing number of sexual misconduct allegations against him?
Trump's approach to human rights? It's personal, critics say
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, world
When President Trump spoke to South Korea’s National Assembly last week, his emphasis on the systematic abuses and absence of basic freedoms in the authoritarian state to the north made him sound like a fervent champion of universal human rights. White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders says human rights “briefly came up” in Trump’s meeting with President Duterte Monday, which she said instead focused on ISIS, illegal drugs, and regional security. Recommended: What do you know about Donald Trump?
Global 2% rise in CO2 'giant leap backwards for humankind'
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
The carbon dioxide emissions that drive global warming, flat since 2014, are set to rise two percent this year, dashing hopes they had peaked, scientists reported at UN climate talks Monday. "This is very disappointing," said Corinne Le Quere, director of the Tyndall Centre for Climate Change Research at the University of East Anglia and lead author of a major study detailing the findings.
Nanotech, gene editing used to edit cholesterol gene
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
U.S. researchers have used nanotechnology plus the powerful CRISPR-Cas9 gene editing tool to turn off a key cholesterol-related gene in mouse liver cells, an advance that could lead to new ways to correct genes that cause high cholesterol and other liver diseases. “We’ve shown you can make a nanoparticle that can be used to permanently and specifically edit the DNA in the liver of an adult animal,” said study author Daniel Anderson, an associate professor in chemical engineering at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. The study, published on Monday in Nature Biotechnology, holds promise for permanently editing genes such as PCSK9, a cholesterol-regulating gene that is already the target of two drugs made by the biotechnology companies Regeneron Pharmaceuticals and Amgen.
The Story Behind That Viral Photo of a Lonely Rhino
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
Want to know what extinction looks like? This is the last male Northern White Rhino. The Last. Nevermore pic.twitter.com/o4obIQUpaR— Daniel Schneider (@BiologistDan) November 6, 2017
Why Clocks Run Clockwise—and Some Watches That Don’t
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
The reason is much older than clocks themselves
World's earliest evidence of wine
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
Scientific analysis of 8,000-year-old pottery jars unearthed in Georgia offers the world's earliest evidence of grape wine-making, dating the tradition almost 1,000 years earlier than previously thought, researchers said Monday. Before, the oldest known chemical evidence of wine in the Near East dated to 5,400-5,000 BC (about 7,000 years ago) and was from the Zagros Mountains of Iran, said the report in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, a peer-reviewed US journal. The world's very first wine is thought to have been made from rice in China around 9,000 years ago, followed by the grape-based alcohol in Iran.
Greenhouse gas emissions just went the wrong way, again
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
After years of promise, we're going backwards on greenhouse gases. Global carbon dioxide emissions are expected to rise by 2 percent in 2017, following a flat line between 2014 and 2016. SEE ALSO: Deadly smog smothers New Delhi, posing grave health risks These results come from researchers at the Global Carbon Project, showing an unexpected increase in emissions from the world's top carbon emitter, China. It seems complacency from governments is a lot to blame, in missing our climate goals. "The slowdown in emissions growth from 2014 to 2016 was always a delicate balance, and the likely 2 percent increase in 2017 clearly demonstrates that we can’t take the recent slowdown for granted," Robbie Andrew, the report's co-author, said in a statement. China's influence on emissions China's emissions contributes nearly a third of the world's total emissions, and was a key factor in the rise. When emissions flatlined for three years, it was the result of the country's reduced economic growth. In 2017, China is projected to increase its emissions by 3.5 percent. It's been hungrier for coal, oil and natural gas, due to increases in industrial production and economic growth. To make matters worse, hydro power generation was down due to lower rainfall, while solar, wind and nuclear growth was not quick enough to make up the shortfall.  However, China is capping its winter coal use and industrial growth is slowing, potentially curbing emissions growth towards the end of the year. Image: Global Carbon ProjectThe U.S., which is the world's second biggest emitter, is projected to have a decline in emissions at 0.4 percent, a smaller decrease compared to the previous decade (1.2 percent each year).  This year is expected to be the first time in five years that coal consumption will increase (by 0.5 percent) in the country. India's emissions are expected to rise by 2 percent, much less than the 6 percent per year it averaged over the last decade, while the European Union's emissions is set to decline by 0.2 percent — compared to an average 2.2 percent drop each year over the last decade.  Veering off Paris targets While it's unclear if the increase in emissions is a one-off or return to growth, this latest news is a setback in achieving targets set by the Paris Climate Agreement.  In 2015, countries agreed to cut emissions enough to limit global warming to under 2 degrees Celsius, or 3.6 degrees Fahrenheit, above pre-industrial levels. Earth's carbon dioxide concentrations is projected to increase by 2.5 parts per million in 2017, which is higher than the growth rate over the last decade. It adds to the record of 403.3 parts per million set in 2016, and obviously doesn't bode well for reducing Earth's temperature. There have been sustained warnings that the next decade will prove critical to humanity's future, and it's clear nations around the world are resting on their laurels when it comes to climate. WATCH: Germophobes would love this bacteria detecting towel
The best holiday travel tech
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
The hottest tech to make any trip smooth sailing.
China dominates top supercomputers list
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
China overtakes the US to have more supercomputers in the list of the world's fastest 500 systems.
NASA Rocket Launch to International Space Station Delayed by Stray Plane
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
A NASA rocket launch was delayed on Saturday morning thanks to an unexpected visitor: a stray plane. “We have confirmed that the aircraft that aborted today's launch attempt was a small aircraft flying at about 500ft approximately 6 miles offshore,” according to the space agency’s Twitter account for the Orbital ATK. The Orbital ATK Antares rocket carrying the Cygnus cargo spacecraft will now attempt to blast off on Sunday at 7:14 a.m. EST, according to a statement from NASA.
The grassroots group that wants to ban plastic straws in Cornwall
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
One conversation between a surfer and a businesswoman has led to a huge social media campaign to help clean up Britain's polluted beaches. Britain is experiencing a worrying rise in the amount of litter, particularly plastic, found on the seabed around its shores.  SEE ALSO: These edible wrappers could help keep plastic out of the ocean In 2016 there's been an average of 358 pieces of litter uncovered per square kilometre of seabed — a rise of 158% compared to the previous year — according to figures from the Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs. Every bit of plastic you see on our beaches shouldn't be there. Have a look at the high tide line after the storms and see what's there #plasticocean #twominutebeachclean #regram #finalstrawcornwall A post shared by The Final Straw (@thefinalstrawcornwall) on Oct 16, 2017 at 10:22pm PDT In order to tackle this dramatic phenomenon that pollutes our shores and seas, a citizens' group in Cornwall is campaigning to ban plastic straws across the English county's bars and restaurants.   "Final Straw Cornwall" started after a conversation between a surfer, James Neale, and 69-year-old businesswoman Pat Smith of Bosinver Farm Cottages.  Image: FINALSTRAWCORNWALLSmith was motivated to do something about plastic after watching the documentary A Plastic Ocean, in which the problem of plastic polluting beaches, littering the ocean floors, blocking seabirds' stomachs and killing whales was on show in all its magnitude.  And Cornwall, with its wild, rugged coastal beauty and its sense of community, was perfect for this experiment in environmental activism: "The message of the film's co-director Jo Ruxton was simple: we have to stop using single use plastics — plastic bags, throwaway coffee cups, straws, bottled water and the like – all of which are designed to be used once and thrown away, many of which end up in our oceans, where they will remain for eternity," Smith told Mashable. We promise to stop posting beautiful photos of #sunsets in #cornwall if you promise to #saynotoplasticstraws #finalstrawcornwall A post shared by The Final Straw (@thefinalstrawcornwall) on Oct 6, 2017 at 12:42pm PDT "Every piece of plastic ever produced is still on the planet, except those that have been burned." Along with Neale, the duo launched the campaign to sensitise individuals and encourage businesses in Cornwall to stop using single-use plastic straws.  Image: FINALSTRAWCORNWALLOne can't help but wonder: why straws? The answer is quite simple, because it's a relatively easy task. "I think it’s important to be honest and tell you exactly why I am campaigning — because it’s easy," Neale says.  He admits his head was buried in the sand on environmental issues, just like many people.  "I wasn’t crippled by some saintly urge, quite the opposite. I found something that wasn’t overwhelming and thought; 'Maybe this is something I could really help with.' Plastic straws." Enjoy our stunning beaches this weekend and please look after them #finalstrawcornwall #oceanpositive ##cornwall A post shared by The Final Straw (@thefinalstrawcornwall) on Sep 23, 2017 at 1:20am PDT Since the launch of the campaign, businesses are lining up to get involved, Smith and Neale say.  Signups include The Lost Gardens of Heligan, prestige hotels such as The Scarlet and Bedruthan Hotel, and most recently Lusty Glaze Beach. "We are really confident of the 6,000 or so hospitality venues we have in Cornwall signing up and getting on board," they say.  Image: finalstrawcornwallAccording to ITV, 8.5 billion straws are used in the UK every year. So what to do if you want to help?  Howling Northwesterly winds on the north coast. Always beautiful #finalstrawcornwall #plasticocean #lovewhereyoulive A post shared by The Final Straw (@thefinalstrawcornwall) on Nov 5, 2017 at 12:34pm PST Here's a little memo: WATCH: Flying taxis could be here by 2020 thanks to Uber
The Latest: Protesters disrupt US event at climate talks
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
BONN, Germany (AP) — The Latest on climate talks taking place in Germany (all times local):
New woman accuses Roy Moore of sexual assault when she was a minor
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, politics
Beverly Nelson is the fifth woman to accuse the Alabama Republican Senate candidate of sexual misconduct. Nelson says Moore groped her when she was 16 and he was 30.
Russia investigation: What we know and where it may head next
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, world
Early last month, as part of its effort to investigate Russian interference in the 2016 US presidential election, the FBI filed an affidavit in federal court explaining why the bureau wanted to keep secret a plea deal it had struck with a low-level former Trump campaign adviser named George Papadopoulos. Mr. Papadopoulos was a bit player in the Trump 2016 effort, a young, unpaid foreign policy adviser who attended meetings but seemed to do little else. Why cloak the fact that Papadopoulos had lied to agents and then deleted social media accounts in a hapless attempt to conceal his actions?
In Israel's north, seeking a measure of calm as Mideast tensions spike
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, world
At first glimpse, the sweeping view north into Lebanon from this ridge-top border kibbutz appears so tranquil – dense forest hillsides of oak and pine cutting a swath of deep green under an open sky, a white-washed house with a red tile roof in the distance. Nearby are a pair of radar towers, a small Israeli army outpost with a watch tower, and across the border fence a Lebanese Army lookout staring right back. “They say it’s the Lebanese Army tower, but it’s Hezbollah.
Measuring the kindness of strangers
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, world
How many people honored this year’s World Kindness Day on Nov. 13, preferably with a random act of kindness? Public indifference toward World Kindness Day may be excused by the fact that the annual celebration has only been around fewer than 20 years. Earlier this year, Microsoft released a survey of 14 countries tracking the level of empathy, respect, and dignity used in digital platforms, such as social media and online forums.
Here's Why Sean Hannity Fans Are Smashing Their Keurig Coffee Machines to Pieces
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
"I am humbled and speechless and frankly laughing my a-- off"
When Earth's Supercontinent Pangaea Was Torn Apart 130 Million Years Ago, the Planet Warmed Up
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
No one would have thought continents tearing themselves apart would be calm, but scientists have just uncovered evidence that the process has consequences far above the surface of the Earth as well. In the paper, a team of German and Australian scientists tallied up how much land was being torn apart over time and compare the extent of this activity, called rifting, to carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere. While we tend to be focused on the carbon cycle of compounds moving between the atmosphere, the ocean, and the upper layers of the Earth's surface, there's a whole lot more carbon that is typically locked safely away in the heart of the planet.