Monday Jan. 22

No hysterical news about the “government shutdown.” No celebrities, sports figures, self-promoters or spin doctors. Here’s the good stuff. 

Pentagon confirms it
Russia has “doomsday” nuclear torpedo,
targeted at US coast

Popular Mechanics
doomsdaysub
…  a 100-megaton thermonuclear weapon. By way of comparison, the atomic bomb dropped on Hiroshima was 16 kilotons … designed to attack coastal areas, destroying cities, naval bases, and ports. The mega-bomb would also generate an artificial tsunami that would surge inland, spreading radioactive contamination with the advancing water. … warhead is “salted” with the radioactive isotope Cobalt-60. Contaminated areas would be off-limits to humanity for up to 100 years.

Richest 1% snapped up 80% of wealth in 2017
BBC
> More than 80 per cent of the all the wealth generated globally last year flowed into the coffers of the richest one per cent of the population, a new Oxfam report has revealed.
> “excessive corporate influence on policy-making, erosion of workers’ rights and relentless drive to minimise costs in order to maximise returns to investors all contribute to a widening gap between the super-rich and the rest”

kochcartoonWhat a coincidence!
GOP passes tax plan
Koch donates $500,000 to Ryan.
The Hill
Charles Koch made the donation 13 days after the plan was passed, which lowers the corporate tax rate and cuts estate taxes.


The new awful
Mexico records 29,000 murders
The Guardian

Public backs legal status for “dreamers”
But doesn’t want border wall
Pew Research

China’s gene editing … to hell with the rules

HANGZHOU, China—In a hospital west of Shanghai, Wu Shixiu since March has been trying to treat cancer patients using a promising new gene-editing tool.

U.S. scientists helped devise the tool, known as Crispr-Cas9, which has captured global attention since a 2012 report said it can be used to edit DNA. Doctors haven’t been allowed to use it in human trials in America. That isn’t the case for Dr. Wu and others in China.

In a quirk of the globalized technology arena, Dr. Wu can forge ahead with the tool because he faces few regulatory hurdles to testing it on humans.

chinagene

In Washington town, almost certain disaster, but when?
NY Times
The fissure was first spotted in October on Rattlesnake Ridge in south central Washington State, overlooking Interstate 82 and the Yakima River. Since then, a 20-acre chunk of mountainside — roughly four million cubic yards of rock, enough to fill 25 football stadiums to the top of the bleachers, eight stories up — has been sliding downhill. Geologists can measure its current speed — about two and a half inches a day — but they cannot say for certain when, or if, it might accelerate into a catastrophe. And they are powerless to stop it.
keepout.jpg

irishimmJesus! We’re white and speak English!
Boston’s Irish alarmed
as immigration sweep
targets them

NPR
Ireland estimates as many as 50,000 unauthorized Irish are living in the shadows in America.
“It makes everyday life more difficult. For a simple traffic stop they can be deported.”

How FDA plan to kill cigarettes may save Big Tobacco
Tech Times
> The second component of the FDA’s plan is what may save the Big Tobacco companies from going under, as exhibited by a new product from Philip Morris International.
> The product, named iQOS, is a device that heats Marlboro-branded tobacco without actually burning it. According to Philip Morris, this will reduce the exposure of people to tar and other toxins that are created by normal cigarettes.

 

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