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Old 2009-08-20, 19:48   Link #3661
ganbaru
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MrTerrorist View Post
good news for the poor & hungry.
Only if their gouvernement don't block the use/importation of those crop because it GMO thing.
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Old 2009-08-20, 23:46   Link #3662
iLney
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200m in 19.19?!

http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport2/hi/athletics/8213036.stm

What can I say? Is he human?
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Old 2009-08-21, 00:20   Link #3663
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shadow Kira01 View Post
Huzzah! Score one for scientists!

This is great news for the third world country, it'll definitely help improve the food crisis in those locations.
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Old 2009-08-21, 06:27   Link #3664
Saleh
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shadow Kira01 View Post
I do not think it will damage Japan-US ties in any way but serves more of the purpose to strengthen it. After all, how can Japan-US ties be good if both the Japanese government and the United States are denying the existence of such secret pacts when in fact a high-level American former official had already admitted it?

However.. If the secrets are to be revealed, there is no doubt that it will come out as a shock and the approval rate of the opposition party after August 30th will drop more than it already did.
I am skeptical about it. If the contents of classified documents are capable of doing any harm to States government, then the declassification may be suppressed. It's not the best time to disclose a secret.


2nd lead poisoning case hits China, 1,300 sick

Quote:
(AP) -- China detained two factory officials after 1,300 children were poisoned by pollution from a manganese processing plant, state media said Thursday, days after emissions from a lead smelter in another province sickened hundreds.

Both cases have sparked unrest and come amid growing anger in China over public safety scandals in which children have been the main victims. Tainted infant formula milk and the mass collapse of schools in a huge earthquake last year have also provoked widespread dissent.

The latest incident involves the Wugang Manganese Smelting Plant in Wenping township, central Hunan province. It opened in May 2008 without the approval of the local environmental protection bureau, within 500 yards (meters) of a primary school, a middle school and a kindergarten.

Fears of poisoning began to spread among villagers in early July when many children became susceptible to colds and suffered fevers and other ailments, the official Xinhua News Agency said.

Some 1,354 children who live near the plant - or nearly 70 percent of those tested - were found to have excessive lead in their blood, Xinhua said. Lead poisoning can damage the nervous and reproductive systems and cause high blood pressure and memory loss.

Local authorities shut down the smelter last week and detained two of its executives on suspicion of "causing severe environmental pollution," Xinhua said. General manager Liu Zhongwu was still at large, it said.

Li Liangmei, a 36-year-old mother of two affected children, said hundreds of villagers rioted Aug. 8 after news broke about the lead poisoning. She said a crowd of about 600 to 700 people overturned four police cars and smashed a local government sign.

"People were angry about the test results," Li said. Her 13-year-old daughter and 8-year-old son were among the hundreds found to have lead in their blood above safe levels.

Earlier this week, villagers in Shaanxi, another rural province in central China, clashed with police as they protested the operations of the Dongling Lead and Zinc Smelting Co. in the town of Changqing. They also stoned trucks trying to deliver coal to the plant.

That unrest came after at least 615 out of 731 children in two villages near that smelter tested positive for lead poisoning. Children from six other villages there are now being tested.

...
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Old 2009-08-21, 09:29   Link #3665
Shadow Kira01
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Originally Posted by Saleh View Post
I am skeptical about it. If the contents of classified documents are capable of doing any harm to States government, then the declassification may be suppressed. It's not the best time to disclose a secret.
However, wouldn't that also contradict the idea of a "change"? Changing the government yet keeping all the policies wouldn't make much sense, would it? More over, even if the DPJ are willing to negotiate with the United States over the secret pact, the Socialists and the PNP would not keep quiet about it. Although they are minor parties with not so many seats but if they make a fuss, the DPJ will be at loss as that it cannot maintain a majority in the Upper House without the two minor coalition parties' aid. Thus, whether it will damage Japan-US ties or not, it will still be pursued as that there is no alternative to the issue.

More over, the only way for Japan-US relations to improve is to perform a multitude of reforms as that it is necessary. Continuing the role of the subordinate is not popular with what the public thinks, even though the current ruling coalition and the wealthy businesses would believe otherwise. More importantly, if the US thinks that revealing a secret pact would harm bilateral ties, it generally points out how fragile the relationship between the two nations are to begin with. Otherwise, this shouldn't be an issue at all.
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Old 2009-08-23, 10:56   Link #3666
LynnieS
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Millions in U.S. facing shrinking Social Security payments
Quote:
WASHINGTON – Millions of older people face shrinking Social Security checks next year, the first time in a generation that payments would not rise.

The trustees who oversee Social Security are projecting there won't be a cost of living adjustment (COLA) for the next two years. That hasn't happened since automatic increases were adopted in 1975.

By law, Social Security benefits cannot go down. Nevertheless, monthly payments would drop for millions of people in the Medicare prescription drug program because the premiums, which often are deducted from Social Security payments, are scheduled to go up slightly.
Ooh. Touch that "third rail" of American politics - a.k.a., Social Security - and you're looking at some serious trouble, IMHO. What are the odds that this will be used to get the health care changes back onto the table?
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Old 2009-08-23, 11:45   Link #3667
Vexx
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Originally Posted by LynnieS View Post
Millions in U.S. facing shrinking Social Security payments
Ooh. Touch that "third rail" of American politics - a.k.a., Social Security - and you're looking at some serious trouble, IMHO. What are the odds that this will be used to get the health care changes back onto the table?
The headline is a bit of mislead.... SS payments aren't shrinking. But the parameters for Medicare are changing upward a bit while the SS payments are remaining the same because the cost-of-living index is unchanged.

I suppose one could argue that the two programs should be synchronized more tightly. On the other hand, it might get the attention of those Medicare recipients at townhall meetings screaming for the "gubmint to keep their hands off of healthcare" (yes, some of the debate factions are that stupid). After all - healthcare insurance is ramping up by double digit percentages for all of us who have insurance (at least until employers throw in the towel on providing benefits completely or go out of business).
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Old 2009-08-23, 12:21   Link #3668
Anh_Minh
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Originally Posted by Vexx View Post
On the other hand, it might get the attention of those Medicare recipients at townhall meetings screaming for the "gubmint to keep their hands off of healthcare" (yes, some of the debate factions are that stupid).
Won't it just make them scream harder?
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Old 2009-08-23, 12:32   Link #3669
SaintessHeart
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Originally Posted by Anh_Minh View Post
Won't it just make them scream harder?
It would be a good thing if they scream to their deaths.....in hyperventilation.
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Old 2009-08-24, 13:04   Link #3670
LynnieS
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vexx View Post
The headline is a bit of mislead.... SS payments aren't shrinking. But the parameters for Medicare are changing upward a bit while the SS payments are remaining the same because the cost-of-living index is unchanged.
True enough. If you consider the title to be exactly what it says, you would expect the S.S. payments to be cut as a result of, well, the U.S. government no longer being able to afford them. Unfortunately and eventually, that will almost definitely be the case.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Vexx View Post
I suppose one could argue that the two programs should be synchronized more tightly. On the other hand, it might get the attention of those Medicare recipients at townhall meetings screaming for the "gubmint to keep their hands off of healthcare" (yes, some of the debate factions are that stupid). After all - healthcare insurance is ramping up by double digit percentages for all of us who have insurance (at least until employers throw in the towel on providing benefits completely or go out of business).
All government-provided programs - and I can't think of one exception right now - are linked, funding-wise. After all, it all comes from the same source who gets the cash from tax receipts and borrowings. You can't continue to borrow billions one week, billions the week after, and continue this every other week or so without some consequences. Health care will, eventually, be affected; odds of that being for the good are, IMHO, low.

Cuts in U.S. school bus service in many areas due to lack of cash

Quote:
... It is a dilemma facing thousands of parents across the country, as cash-strapped school districts from California to Florida have cut bus routes to chip away at spending.
...
About 23 percent of school districts surveyed by the American Association of School Administrators say they are reducing or eliminating school transportation for the coming school year as part of cost-cutting measures. That's up from the 14 percent who considered such measures during the 2008-2009 year.
A couple of miles isn't too far for a teenager to walk - as long as he is careful - IMHO. They probably won't find it "cool" to have to walk instead of driving their own cars. Younger kids, esp. if they have to walk in risky neighborhoods or where there aren't pedestrian paths could be at more risk, though.
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Old 2009-08-24, 13:59   Link #3671
Shadow Kira01
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Poll: Americans losing confidence in Obama

Quote:
WASHINGTON — A new poll says that Americans, concerned over the future of health care reform and anxious about the growing federal budget deficit, are losing faith in President Barack Obama.

The Washington Post-ABC News survey found that less that half of Americans — 49 percent — say they believe the president will make the right decisions for the country. That's down from 60 percent at the 100-day mark of the Obama presidency.

The poll published Friday says Obama's overall approval is 57 percent, 12 points lower than it was at its peak in April. Fifty-three percent disapprove of the way he's handling the budget deficit and his approval on health care continues to deteriorate.

The national survey was conducted Aug. 13-17 and has a sampling error of plus or minus three percentage points.
It seems that Obama's approval ratings are dropping over two major reasons. One is the obvious "death panels" which are giving the impression to Americans that poor people will have to allow their doctors to unplug the oxygen tank for their grandparents. This action led to an outrage all over American town halls and the fact that the opposition parties led by the Republicans aren't using their voice to oppose the "death panels", they ended up getting grilled as well.

The other issue is the war in Afghanistan in which American soldiers along with allies fight against insurgents known as the Talibans which seems to be a worthless mission to the majority of Americans, especially those who are aligned with the Democrats as that the situation in Afghanistan has been deteriorating, not to mention that the Talibans are becoming more and more energetic and powerful as opposed to getting weakened. More over, the majority of Americans are seeing the situation as starting from scratch this point in time. Thus, there is no doubt that Obama's approval ratings are dropping drastically lately...
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Old 2009-08-24, 14:02   Link #3672
Anh_Minh
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Originally Posted by LynnieS View Post

Cuts in U.S. school bus service in many areas due to lack of cash

A couple of miles isn't too far for a teenager to walk - as long as he is careful - IMHO. They probably won't find it "cool" to have to walk instead of driving their own cars. Younger kids, esp. if they have to walk in risky neighborhoods or where there aren't pedestrian paths could be at more risk, though.
See? You can do something against child obesity...
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Old 2009-08-24, 14:34   Link #3673
Thingle
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Originally Posted by Anh_Minh View Post
See? You can do something against child obesity...
Uhh.. unless you're the parent, you cant (have no right to).
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Old 2009-08-24, 14:59   Link #3674
Vexx
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Originally Posted by Thingle View Post
Uhh.. unless you're the parent, you cant (have no right to).
Aye, all anyone else can do is shame the parent (societal disapproval).
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Old 2009-08-24, 15:46   Link #3675
Anh_Minh
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Originally Posted by Thingle View Post
Uhh.. unless you're the parent, you cant (have no right to).
Though I was facetious in my comment, you - or at least, the government - really can do things against child obesity. Off the top of my head:
- provide balanced meals in school cafeterias, and making sure even poor families can afford them.
- regulate advertisement for snacks and junk foods, the same way ads for tobacco or alcohol are regulated.
- mandatory PE.
- promote healthy lifestyles.
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Old 2009-08-24, 15:52   Link #3676
Cipher
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Anh_Minh View Post
Though I was facetious in my comment, you - or at least, the government - really can do things against child obesity. Off the top of my head:
- provide balanced meals in school cafeterias, and making sure even poor families can afford them.
- regulate advertisement for snacks and junk foods, the same way ads for tobacco or alcohol are regulated.
- mandatory PE.
- promote healthy lifestyles.
Child obesity you say? You'd rather help the fat kid than the poor skinny kid?
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Old 2009-08-24, 15:59   Link #3677
Thingle
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Originally Posted by Anh_Minh View Post
Though I was facetious in my comment, you - or at least, the government - really can do things against child obesity. Off the top of my head:
- provide balanced meals in school cafeterias, and making sure even poor families can afford them.
- regulate advertisement for snacks and junk foods, the same way ads for tobacco or alcohol are regulated.
- mandatory PE.
- promote healthy lifestyles.
Well you see, people have the right to live the life they want to live, given they harm no one else and the state has no right to enforce what kind of food to eat, classes to take and lifestyle to live, ergo imposing on erstwhile "free" people.

That's just my opinion of course, the most states can do is ensure that they are educated about good health and which foods are worth eating. Then they leave it to the individual to make choices for himself. Anything more than that is excessive demonstration of state power.
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Old 2009-08-24, 16:01   Link #3678
Cipher
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thingle View Post
Well you see, people have the right to live the life they want to live, given they harm no one else and the state has no right to enforce what kind of food to eat, classes to take and lifestyle to live, ergo imposing on erstwhile "free" people.

That's just my opinion of course, the most states can do is ensure that they are educated about good health and which foods are worth eating. Then they leave it to the individual to make choices for himself. Anything more than that is excessive demonstration of state power.
Leaving the baby to feed itself?
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Old 2009-08-24, 16:02   Link #3679
Vinak
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The Appendix: Useful and in Fact Promising



The body's appendix has long been thought of as nothing more than a worthless evolutionary artifact, good for nothing save a potentially lethal case of inflammation.
Now researchers suggest the appendix is a lot more than a useless remnant. Not only was it recently proposed to actually possess a critical function, but scientists now find it appears in nature a lot more often than before thought. And it's possible some of this organ's ancient uses could be recruited by physicians to help the human body fight disease more effectively.



http://www.livescience.com/health/09...evolution.html


----------



Robots take another step towards world domination.

Robots Learn to Lie



Is it important that computers and robots tell us the truth? Or should they learn to lie - like their human makers?
In an experiment performed in a Swiss laboratory, 10 robots with downward-facing sensors competed for "food" - a light-colored ring on the floor. At the other end of the space, a darker ring - "poison" - was placed. The robots earned points for how much time they spent near food as opposed to poison.
The experimenters, engineers Sara Mitri and Dario Floreano and evolutionary biologist Laurent Keller, also gave the robots the ability to talk with each other. Each robot can produce a blue light that can be seen by the others and which can give away the position of the "food" ring. Over time, the robots evolved to deceive each other about the food ring.



http://www.livescience.com/technolog...obots-lie.html



----------
This isn't news (3 years old now.) but it's related to this article:
Quote:
Originally Posted by TinyRedLeaf View Post

Deep Space Alcohol

The cloud, where OH maser filament are red and extended methanol filaments are green. Image credit: JIVE Click to enlarge
Astronomers have located a gigantic cloud of methyl alcohol surrounding a stellar nursery. The cloud measures half a trillion km across (300 billion miles), and could help astronomers understand how some of the most massive stars in the Universe are formed. It's methanol, not ethanol, so you wouldn't want to drink it if you could reach it.


http://www.universetoday.com/2006/04...space-alcohol/
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Old 2009-08-24, 16:08   Link #3680
Anh_Minh
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Originally Posted by Cipher View Post
Child obesity you say? You'd rather help the fat kid than the poor skinny kid?
In developed countries, the former is more of an issue than the latter.

Besides, the solution for the skinny kid is relatively easy: just make sure he's got enough to eat. For the obese one, it's a much messier problem: you have to change his mind, his habits.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Thingle View Post
Well you see, people have the right to live the life they want to live, given they harm no one else and the state has no right to enforce what kind of food to eat, classes to take and lifestyle to live, ergo imposing on erstwhile "free" people.

That's just my opinion of course, the most states can do is ensure that they are educated about good health and which foods are worth eating. Then they leave it to the individual to make choices for himself. Anything more than that is excessive demonstration of state power.
I disagree on one detail: you can bloody well force kids to take certain classes. Reading, writing, basic arithmetic, for starters.

I'll have you note that the step I've described aren't about forcing kids into a lifestyle. It's about not letting the TV brainwash them into overeating junk, making sure they've got one balanced meal (they're going to have a meal anyway. Teaching kids is hard enough without starving them at noon. Might as well make it a good one.), and generally speaking introducing them to the possibility of being something other than a chips eating couch potato.
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