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Topics - nesb

1
So there's been some buzz about this lately, and my first reaction was, meh. But it would put some pretty serious pressure on employers to not be exploitative dicks. And it would, y'know, give people jobs. I'm thinking it could be especially good for felons.

On the flip-side, I'd be curious about the details of the implementation. Is everyone, everywhere, guaranteed a semi-local job, or are people going to have to move or travel? Stuff like that.
2
http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2018/04/21/how-long-will-be-allowed-to-remain-christian.html

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Here in the United States, Christians and Christianity are mocked, belittled, smeared and attacked by some on a daily basis. This is a bigoted practice that is not only increasing exponentially, but is being encouraged and sanctioned by a number on the left.

OTOH the president literally had to pretend to be Christian to get elected. So dude will probably not have to become a martyr, for a spell. Not that he would, because the mean ol' New Yorker talking smack about Chick-fil-a has him shaken to his core. That's not really the stern stuff of a saint.
3
Science / Stone Age Cosmopolitan
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Using advanced sequencing methods, the team were able to recover DNA data from humans pre-dating the agricultural revolution in North Africa - around 10,000 years ago - for the first time.

They found that about two-thirds of the Taforalt individuals' heritage closely matched the DNA of the ancient Natufians, a culture that lived in the Eastern Mediterranean region of the Middle East until about 11,500 years ago.

The other third of the Taforalt DNA matched current populations in West Africa, suggesting interaction by peoples on either side of the Sahara Desert - a huge physical barrier to migration - were also occurring earlier than previously thought.

"Clearly, human populations were interacting much more with groups from other, more distant areas than was previously assumed," Mr Krause said.
-https://www.independent.co.uk/news/science/human-dna-history-study-morocco-africa-iberomaurusian-migration-max-planck-institute-a8277346.html

And the paper in Science if you can access it (I cannot): http://science.sciencemag.org/content/early/2018/03/14/science.aar8380?variant=full-text&sso=1&sso_redirect_count=1&oauth-code=672b0e70-9849-4903-a55c-ac9fc3c7bc0c

I kinda like this, because it suggests against humans being isolationist or in-group exclusive by nature. We're obviously a social animal, but even in the Stone Age, apparently, that socialization wasn't limited to people who hailed from one particular region.
5
https://arstechnica.com/science/2018/03/attack-of-the-pond-virus-it-outwits-drug-resistant-bacteria-saved-mans-life/

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But in Westernized countries, phage therapy has largely been passed over by researchers, given the success of antibiotics. As such, phages have failed to garner the needed research attention to establish their safety and efficacy. That's changing now, albeit slowly, with the rise of antibiotic-resistant bacteria.

But this pond phage isn't your garden-variety microbial marauder. The phage--dubbed OMKO1--has the unique ability to force surviving drug-resistant bacteria into ditching their drug resistance. This is critical. One of the main arguments against turning to phage therapy is that bacteria can readily evolve resistance to them. Researchers have plenty of evidence of this. Thus, some researchers fear that any effective phage therapy is destined to the same impotent fate as many of our once powerful antibiotics.

But, if phages can kill bacteria and make survivors evolve to be vulnerable to drugs, then a one-two punch of phage and drugs could knock out any infection, resistant or not. In other words, "phage such as OMKO1 that appear to force a clinically relevant trade-off may present an effective solution to the inevitable evolution of resistance by pathogenic bacteria," the Yale researchers conclude.

You never know. This could be something.
6
Sports / XFL the sequel
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This is a worked shoot, my good buddies. For all the proof you need, repeat the particulars of Vince McMahon's ostensible plan, out loud, to a skeptical audience, like say on the bus or whatever. A "family friendly" alternative professional football league, with no TV contract, that will exclude players with criminal records yet somehow still find eight 40-man rosters' worth of athletes good and skilled and competent enough to play a brand of "quicker, simpler ... safer" football with "fewer infractions" and at a high and telegenic enough level to draw football-stadium-sized crowds, and all of it organized and pitched around those players agreeing not ever to kneel or sit during the national anthem--a marginal part of the presentation of a football game that a good 98-percent of football fans happily spent waiting in line for hot dogs or finding their seats or picking their noses for all the long decades of the NFL's explosive growth into America's secular religion, and which a fractional smattering of whom only began pretending to care any particular which way about less than 18 months ago. All of it launched and overseen and funded by the leathery pinhead who has spent the past half-century not turning professional wrestling into one of the most popular sports in America, despite never facing direct competition even a hundredth as rich or powerful or entrenched as the NFL--the doofus who tried to launch a bodybuilding league and wound up getting indicted for it. Yes. This is a real thing that definitely will happen.

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Don't fall for this. Please don't fall for it. Oh god, you're going to, aren't you. You're going to gawk it into existence. You asshole.

https://deadspin.com/the-new-xfl-is-dumb-as-hell-but-thank-god-its-not-actua-1822447469
7
Quote
The tensions between Monsanto and the nation's weed scientists actually began several years ago, when Monsanto first moved to make dicamba the centerpiece of a new weedkilling strategy. The company tweaked the genes in soybeans and cotton and created genetically modified varieties of those crops that can tolerate doses of dicamba. (Normally, dicamba kills those crops.) This allowed farmers to spray the weedkiller directly on their soybean or cotton plants, killing the weeds while their crops survived.

[...]

Dicamba, however, has a well-known defect. It's volatile; it tends to evaporate from the soil or vegetation where it has been sprayed, creating a cloud of plant-killing vapor that can spread in unpredictable directions. It happens more in hot weather, and Monsanto's new strategy inevitably would mean spraying dicamba in the heat of summer.

[...]

"If this were any other product, I feel like it would be just pulled off the market, and we'd be done with it," Scott says.

But dicamba, and the crops created to tolerate it, aren't just any products. There is big money behind them. Monsanto, seed dealers, farmers who are struggling with weed problems -- they all have a stake in this technology. The university scientists who are pointing out problems with them are confronting an economic juggernaut.

[...]

Bradley says executives from Monsanto have made repeated calls to his supervisors. "What the exact nature of those calls [was], I'm not real sure," Bradley says. "But I'm pretty sure it has something to do with not being happy with what I'm saying."

I contacted three academic deans at the University of Missouri, asking for details about the calls. A university spokesman said they were too busy to respond.

Monsanto's Partridge says, "We are not attacking Dr. Bradley. We respect him, his position, opinion, and his work. We respect him, and academics in general."

Bradley says criticism from people in Missouri's farming community whom he has known for years hits him even harder. "To have somebody say that what [I'm] saying is bad for Missouri agriculture, that's a hard one to take," he says. "There's not a lot of glory in these positions, or major financial incentive. We chose these jobs to help the farmers in our states."
-http://www.npr.org/sections/thesalt/2017/10/26/559733837/monsanto-and-the-weed-scientists-not-a-love-story
8
Politics and Current Events / wtf


So someone booby-trapped a walking trail in my area. Luckily, someone noticed, and called the bomb squad. Who knows if the trap would have worked, but if there was a hole drilled in the mouse-trap, and a firing pin attached to it, then maybe?

http://wwmt.com/news/local/bomb-squad-called-for-booby-trap-found-on-kalamazoo-walking-trail
9
Arts and Entertainment / Fraggle Rock
The Doozers are the proletariat, the Fraggles the bourgeois, and the Gorgs are the aristocracy, right? So what are Doc and Sprocket? Either way, the show seems to have a message similar to Bee Movie, where hard labor (and being exploited) is the natural and necessary state of certain beings, regardless of their ideals.
10
Sports / NFL 2017
Since Ksen seems to have survived the hurricane just fine, I feel compelled to point out that the Lions have a better record so far this year, than the Patriots do.

11
So I was smoking a lot of dope, and decided this guy:


^guy^

looks a lot like a puffin.


^puffin^

A pterosaur is like a dinosaur but different, and what if like, birds evolved from them instead? I mean, I think they flew and stuff, and a T-Rex can barely fly at all?
12
TR Embassy and Animal Shelter / birds ?!
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wmvGEJkfSVY

Hummingbirds bathing on leaves is (apparently) an entire YouTube genre. And rightfully so.
13
Politics and Current Events / Grab Them By the Pussy
Parents dream of their children becoming the President of the United States. Well, tell your child he just has to reach a point where he can grab women by their pussies, and it's okay, because he's a celebrity. If your kids (or some of them) are girls, well, maybe they can be groped by a future president.
14
Hey, my friends. I've been reading up on various astronomy/etc. stuff today, and it occurred to me that I don't know how much time dilation is taken into account when dealing with distant objects. I imagine it must be, totally, but we often hear that something is so old for being so far away, given the time it takes light to reach us, but what about relative speeds and gravitational effects? They would impact relative age, presumably. So if Fuzzy or anyone knowledgeable can explain roughly how all this fits in with our models and whatnot, at least on some basic level, I would be mad grateful.