Wednesday, February 18, 2015
All the greats are dying.
Tuesday, February 17, 2015
Gov. John Kitzhaber, the four-termer who will step down Wednesday amid a conflict-of-interest scandal involving his fiancée, was “a bright and idealistic young man, totally committed to the environment,” writes local political observer Floyd McKay of Western Washington University. Mr. Kitzhaber’s fiancée, Cylvia Hayes, the author of his downfall, boasts a master’s degree in environmental studies. The two came together, says the New York Times , over a “shared passion for a low-carbon energy future.” But not to worry. Mr. Kitzhaber’s successor, Oregon’s secretary of state, is a lawyer with a degree in environmental conservation.
Are you getting that icky feeling yet? There comes a moment when you should hear echoes of Pope Francis ’s complaint of a Catholic hierarchy full of cynics bathing in easy grace as they pursue self-advancement.
Even if there are some lone holdouts of sterility in the natural world, however, the environment exists in a constant state of flux – and if extremophiles teach us anything, it is that organisms are always capable of adapting. “Give them enough time and they will find a way,” says DiRuggiero.
According to the available evidence, the bubble is a reality. In education, for instance, Walker and Frevert found a wealth of research showing that better looking students, at school and university, tend to be judged by teachers as being more competent and intelligent – and that was reflected in the grades they gave them.
What’s more, the bubble’s influence inflates over the years. “There’s a cumulative effect,” explains Frevert. “You become more confident and have more positive beliefs and more opportunities to demonstrate your competence.”
Yup yup yup. And there's an ugly effect too.
Vakoch wants to send repeated radio transmissions of messages to hundreds of stars that lie within 82 light-years (25 parsecs) of Earth — using a focused beam from the Arecibo Observatory in Puerto Rico, the world's largest radio telescope.
Physicist Stephen Hawking has argued against that strategy, saying that the signals could attract the bad kind of aliens depicted in movies ranging from "War of the Worlds" to "Independence Day." He imagines that our first contact with extraterrestrials could be like the Native Americans' first contact with Europeans, "which didn't turn out very well for the Native Americans."
Hawking is absolutely right about this. Indeed, it should be illegal to attempt to contact aliens.
Women like Price, who see their decreasing sex drive as a problem, are at the center of an intense, emotional debate that's been raging for years over whether the Food and Drug Administration should approve the first drug that claims to boost a woman's libido.
The outright stupidity of this case is no assurance that it will simply be dismissed when a judge is presented with the facts. In the more crazy, anti-gun sections of the country, stranger things than Mr. Gordon going to prison have happened. But there may be a faster and better solution to the problem. Let’s imagine for a moment that a governor of a blue state who is having a lot of trouble with the conservative base was interested in running for the presidency. Let’s further imagine that he could use a quick shot in the arm to bolster his conservative credentials. A possible scenario comes to mind, no?