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Avalanches kill 2 skiers in France, injure 2 in Switzerland

PARIS (AP) - Authorities say two skiers were killed by an avalanche in the French Alps, and two more people were injured by an avalanche in Switzerland near the border with France. The prefecture in France's Savoie region said the fatal avalanche occurred Sun

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600-lb. heroin spoon sculpture placed outside OxyContin creator's corporate headquarters

Addiction profiteer and OxyContin creator Purdue Pharma just can’t get a break. The privately held pill-pusher palace faces myriad lawsuits for being a driving force in the addiction crisis currently gripping the nation, most recently coming from the state
Daily Kos

600-lb. heroin spoon sculpture placed outside OxyContin creator's corporate headquarters

Addiction profiteer and OxyContin creator Purdue Pharma just can’t get a break. The privately held pill-pusher palace faces myriad lawsuits for being a driving force in the addiction crisis currently gripping the nation, most recently coming from the state of Massachusetts on June 12. Then, the opiate factory announced massive layoffs this week, the second such move of 2018, along with a focus shift to drugs that actually help people rather than kill them. Just days after the layoffs were announced, employees at the family-owned death factory arrived Friday to find a most challenging piece of street art outside of the Stamford, Connecticut, headquarters of the company who still totally sells addictive painkillers: a nearly 600-pound sculpture of a heroin spoon, bent and dirty with residue. Massachusetts artist Domenic Esposito tells the Hartford Courier that his sculpture represents addiction as an epidemic, as well as paying tribute both to his brother’s 14-year struggle with addiction, and his mother who always finds the dirty spoons that signal his relapses.  Esposito said his brother started with OxyContin and Percocet and moved to heroin. “People say [OxyContin and Percocet] aren’t a big deal, but then you’re hooked and you run out of money and you turn to heroin. “My mom would call me in a panic ... screaming she found another burnt spoon,” Esposito said. “This is a story thousands of families go through. He’s lucky to be alive.” The Danbury News-Times reports that the sculpture was installed as part of the Fernando Luis Alvarez Gallery’s “Opioid: Express Yourself” multimedia exhibit. Strategically placed by Alvarez to block both a driveway and a sidewalk, the sculpture, called “Purdue,” remained in place for over two hours before city workers arrived to remove it. Alvarez was arrested for both a misdemeanor—for putting the sculpture outside the painkiller palace and thus blocking traffic—and a felony, for (amicably) refusing to remove it under police orders.  Purdue Pharma issued a predictably meaningless statement in response to the installation. “We share the protesters’ concern about the opioid crisis, and respect their right to peacefully express themselves. Purdue is committed to working collaboratively with those affected by this public health crisis on meaningful solutions to help stem the tide of opioid-related overdose deaths.” The “Purdue” spoon remains in police custody.

Nuts & Bolts: Inside the Democratic Party—yes, there can be bad canvass

Welcome back, Saturday Campaign D-I-Yers! For those who tune in, welcome to the Nuts & Bolts of a Democratic campaign. Each week, we discuss issues that help drive successful campaigns. If you’ve missed prior diaries, please visit our group or follow N
Daily Kos

Nuts & Bolts: Inside the Democratic Party—yes, there can be bad canvass

Welcome back, Saturday Campaign D-I-Yers! For those who tune in, welcome to the Nuts & Bolts of a Democratic campaign. Each week, we discuss issues that help drive successful campaigns. If you’ve missed prior diaries, please visit our group or follow Nuts & Bolts Guide. Over the years, one thing I have always stood in favor of is canvass: direct contact with voters at the door. Not only does good canvass help inform voters about your candidate, but it helps identify individuals who have moved and need to be re-registered. You can clean up your data, connect voters with vote by mail options, and register new voters who move into your district. And those are just some of the benefits of good canvass. Despite all of these upsides, though, it is actually possible to have bad canvassing: a door-to-door effort that harms your campaign more than it helps. Do you want to avoid bad canvass?  Let’s talk about the things you need to stay away from!

This week in science: diamond in the rough

Later this year, New Horizons will get some passing shots of a mysterious class of distant ice-balls and it hurtles past Ultima Thule on its way to the cosmic background. But in this week, an ambitious Japanese effort called Hayabusa 2 closed in on a muc
Daily Kos

This week in science: diamond in the rough

Later this year, New Horizons will get some passing shots of a mysterious class of distant ice-balls and it hurtles past Ultima Thule on its way to the cosmic background. But in this week, an ambitious Japanese effort called Hayabusa 2 closed in on a much nearer icy rock and it has some pretty damn nifty rover technology onboard: [It] also will deploy a lander called MASCOT that is so clever it makes me smile. It's a rectangular box less than a third of a meter across and has a mass of 10 kilograms. On the surface of Ryugu, though, that mass translates to it weighing about as much as a big drop of water on Earth! It has an offset weight in it that, when moved, will use its torque to launch the lander on a series of shallow hops so that it can move around the surface! Whoa. It also has two other rovers called MINERVA-II which use a similar method to move around the surface. The best images yet of the small object, dubbed Ryugu, show it to resemble a partially cut celestial diamond in shape and with a ridge of material partly encircling the equator that’s similar in some ways to that seen on one of Saturn’s tinier moons by Cassini. The JAXA spacecraft will edge ever closer over the next few weeks until it settles in about 10-15 miles away and begins its long, multifaceted mission. A grad student experiment that was originally to last only a year has come to an end, along with the most famous non-human extant primate of our time, over 40 years later: Koko, the gorilla who mastered sign language and showed the world what great apes can do, has died. «Koko touched the lives of millions as an ambassador for all gorillas and an icon for interspecies communication and empathy,» the release said. «She was beloved and will be deeply missed.» There is no prior science policy or environmental objectives that Trump and his minions can’t sell, grift, and/or screw up: Trump’s list of seven ocean policy priorities …  calls for federal agencies to coordinate on providing “economic, security, and environmental benefits for present and future generations of Americans,” and then highlights the need to “promote the lawful use of the ocean by agencies, including [the] United States Armed Forces.” It also says the government should work to “facilitate the economic growth of coastal communities and promote ocean industries,” ... Speaking of Trumpy-isms, the Space Force garnered considerable fun in cyberspace this week: On Thursday morning, #SpaceForceRecruitmentSlogans became the top trending Twitter topic in the U.S., with thousands of Americans using the hashtag to make suggestions or comment on Trump’s new idea. A large portion of the posts poked fun at some of the president’s most infamous catchphrases. Be skeptical of public science “debates,” for a lot of reasons, and our friends at SciAm name a few: But second, and maybe more importantly: once you put facts about the world up for debate, you’ve already lost. Science isn’t a popularity contest; if it were, I’d definitely vote to eliminate quantum mechanics, set π to 1, and put radium back in toothpaste. I really, really don’t want sea levels to rise, rainfall patterns to shift, and heat waves to intensify. Climate change is definitely not my first choice. But physics and chemistry don’t care what I, or anyone else, wants.

This week in the war on workers: $15 minimum wage and paid family leave in Massachusetts

Massachusetts lawmakers sprang into action this week to keep planned initiatives for a $15 minimum wage, paid leave and a reduced sales tax off the November ballot—and it’s mostly good. The bad precursor to the “grand bargain” legislation is that i
Daily Kos

This week in the war on workers: $15 minimum wage and paid family leave in Massachusetts

Massachusetts lawmakers sprang into action this week to keep planned initiatives for a $15 minimum wage, paid leave and a reduced sales tax off the November ballot—and it’s mostly good. The bad precursor to the “grand bargain” legislation is that it came only after the state’s Supreme Judicial Court killed a ballot question that would have raised taxes on the highest earners to fund education and transportation. That’s a major loss to the state, and what you get when a Republican governor—even one who throws decency the occasional bone as this week by saying no to sending National Guard troops to the border—is appointing judges. But with that off the table, legislators quickly passed a $15 minimum wage, to be phased in over five years; 12 weeks of paid family leave and 20 weeks of paid medical leave; and headed off a measure lowering the sales tax (and cutting revenue significantly) with an agreement for a sales tax holiday. This is mostly good, if you can forget the loss of the millionaire’s tax. But there are some problems. In exchange for the minimum wage increase, the state will phase out a law requiring workers to get time and a half on Sundays and holidays, a major loss for many. The minimum wage for tipped workers will also only rise to 45 percent of the regular minimum wage—this in the week that Washington, D.C, voters passed one fair wage for all. Raise Up Massachusetts, the coalition pushing the minimum wage and paid leave questions, is still considering whether to keep the minimum wage on the ballot given the weaknesses in what the state legislature passed.

Rick Scott gave $600K tax break to kiddie concentration camp--that also engaged in fraud

Right now, Rick Scott and Bill Nelson are tied in the polls for a Senate seat. How this is possible after all of the horrible things Rick Scott has done to our state is beyond me.  Rick Scott is somehow always involved in the worst things going on in our na
Daily Kos

Rick Scott gave $600K tax break to kiddie concentration camp--that also engaged in fraud

Right now, Rick Scott and Bill Nelson are tied in the polls for a Senate seat. How this is possible after all of the horrible things Rick Scott has done to our state is beyond me.  Rick Scott is somehow always involved in the worst things going on in our nation: allowing the NRA to pave the way for the largest gun massacres in our history, expanding Stand Your Ground, giving Trump political cover after his abhorrent defense of Nazis in Charlottesville, or his bizarre attacks on the FBI. His involvement with the recent family separation tragedy is no exception. In Homestead, Florida, a federal compound detaining around 1000 kids is managed by a Florida contractor called Comprehensive Health Services.  They got the contract a few weeks before Trump’s inhumane policy took effect.  Ten percent of the children there have been forcibly separated from their parents by immigration agents. This was a facility that was shut down years ago, but re-opened in time for Trump’s child kidnapping policy.  Why are they operating here in Florida?  You can thank Rick Scott. The facility was given $600,000 as a tax-incentive.   And it gets even worse: But just as Scott was negotiating that tax break, Comprehensive Health was hashing out a deal with the feds to pay a $3.8 million settlement to the U.S. Department of Justice over a medical-fraud claim. After Comprehensive Health paid the fine in February 2017 (without admitting any wrongdoing), Florida gave the company the tax breaks anyway. Of course, Rick Scott is never bothered by fraud.  We are talking about the same man who once defrauded millions of elderly people with the largest Medicare fraud in history.

Spotlight on green news & views: Sea level rise a big friggin' expense on the coast; asbestos

This is the 562nd edition of the Spotlight on Green News & Views (previously known as the Green Diary Rescue). Here is the June 16 Spotlight. Inclusion of a story in the Spotlight does not necessarily indicate my agreement with or endorsement of it. OU
Daily Kos

Spotlight on green news & views: Sea level rise a big friggin' expense on the coast; asbestos

This is the 562nd edition of the Spotlight on Green News & Views (previously known as the Green Diary Rescue). Here is the June 16 Spotlight. Inclusion of a story in the Spotlight does not necessarily indicate my agreement with or endorsement of it. OUTSTANDING GREEN STORIES RonK writes—The Daily Bucket: A Tree for all Seasons and its Phenology from Solstice to Solstice: “I have a favorite tree. It is a Scarlet Oak (Quercus coccinea). The scarlet designationcomes from its bright fall red foliage that will be apparent when we get to October. The Scarlet Oak is native to East and Central US. It is a beautifully shaped tree and is often used as a featured ornamental in landscaping as it is here in a city park situated along Bellingham Bay.I have enjoyed this tree for a long time and have photographed it off and on as time presented and as I watched the sun move across the bay and the islands. The sun traverses the bay arcing through the year to one solstice and then back again. As the sun changes its position across the seasons the tree changes its persona as the sun journeys round the bay. This is a tree for all seasons with the bay, the San Juan Islands, the Lummi Peninsula and sunsets as its backdrop. The park is Marine Park, one that I have photographed in previous posts over the years. However, I have never given this magnificent tree the due that it deserves until now.” Here is a view of the Scarlet Oak decked out in its finery and perched by the Bay with Lummi  directly behind and Orcas Island in background to the right. Xaxnar writes—«The Ornithologist the Internet Called a Murderer»: “The New York Times has the story of an ornithologist who found the first-ever seen male of an elusive species of bird. What happened next is not what Dr. Christopher Filardi expected. Only three females had ever been observed. They are found in an area of Guadalcanal that is under threat of logging and other development. When he caught a glimpse of a male he was thrilled. Kirk Wallace Johnson explains what happened next. Days later, when the team captured a male in a mist net, Dr. Filardi gasped. ‘One of the most poorly known birds in the world was there, in front of me, like a creature of myth come to life,’ he wrote in a dispatch to the museum. [...] It wasn’t until the public realized that Dr. Filardi had ‘collected’ the bird — killing it for the museum’s research collection — that the adulation turned to venom. What Filardi did is normal scientific practice. Rarely-seen does not mean rare. Filardi estimates the island population is 4,000 birds — a good size for an island habitat. He was not collecting a trophy. By collecting the kingfisher, he was obtaining information that is necessary to understand the bird: how it compares to related species, its genome, as a standard for further work, and so on. This is how science documents species to provide a base of knowledge about them.”

Economics

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In Army of None, a field guide to the coming world of autonomous warfare

The Silicon Valley-military industrial complex is increasingly in the crosshairs of artificial intelligence engineers. A few weeks ago, Google was reported to be backing out of a Pentagon contract around Project Maven, which would use image recognition to aut
TechCrunch

In Army of None, a field guide to the coming world of autonomous warfare

The Silicon Valley-military industrial complex is increasingly in the crosshairs of artificial intelligence engineers. A few weeks ago, Google was reported to be backing out of a Pentagon contract around Project Maven, which would use image recognition to automatically evaluate photos. Earlier this year, AI researchers around the world joined petitions calling for a boycott […]

Open source sustainability

Open source sustainability has been nothing short of an oxymoron. Engineers around the world pour their sweat and frankly, their hearts into these passion projects that undergird all software in the modern internet economy. In exchange, they ask for nothing i
TechCrunch

Open source sustainability

Open source sustainability has been nothing short of an oxymoron. Engineers around the world pour their sweat and frankly, their hearts into these passion projects that undergird all software in the modern internet economy. In exchange, they ask for nothing in return except for recognition and help in keeping their projects alive and improving them. […]

Are scooter startups really worth billions?

It’s been hard to miss the scooter startup wars opening fresh, techno-fueled rifts in Valley society in recent months. Another flavor of ride-sharing steed which sprouted seemingly overnight to clutter up sidewalks — drawing rapid-fire ire from ci
TechCrunch

Are scooter startups really worth billions?

It’s been hard to miss the scooter startup wars opening fresh, techno-fueled rifts in Valley society in recent months. Another flavor of ride-sharing steed which sprouted seemingly overnight to clutter up sidewalks — drawing rapid-fire ire from city regulators apparently far more forgiving of traffic congestion if it’s delivered in the traditional, car-shaped capsule. Even […]

How backups, backups, backups protect NYC’s cellular infrastructure

The infrastructure that underpins our lives is not something we ever want to think about. Nothing good has come from suddenly needing to wonder “where does my water come from?” or “how does electricity connect into my home?” That pondering gets even m
TechCrunch

How backups, backups, backups protect NYC’s cellular infrastructure

The infrastructure that underpins our lives is not something we ever want to think about. Nothing good has come from suddenly needing to wonder “where does my water come from?” or “how does electricity connect into my home?” That pondering gets even more intense when we talk about cellular infrastructure, where a single dropped call […]

Culture

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The Latest: Alaska city unveils memorial to fallen Guardsmen

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) - The Latest on an Alaska city honoring Guardsmen killed in crash after 1964 earthquake (all times local): 1:40 p.m. Four men who died on a humanitarian mission to help rebuild an Alaska town following the second most powerful earthquak
www.washingtontimes.com stories: Travel

The Latest: Alaska city unveils memorial to fallen Guardsmen

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) - The Latest on an Alaska city honoring Guardsmen killed in crash after 1964 earthquake (all times local): 1:40 p.m. Four men who died on a humanitarian mission to help rebuild an Alaska town following the second most powerful earthquake ever recorded have been honored in the ...

The Latest: Protesters block bus carrying immigrant kids

MCALLEN, Texas (AP) - The Latest on the separation of immigrant children from their parents following President Donald Trump's order allowing them to remain with their parents (all times local): 2:25 p.m. A group of immigrant rights protesters has blocked a b
www.washingtontimes.com stories: Travel

The Latest: Protesters block bus carrying immigrant kids

MCALLEN, Texas (AP) - The Latest on the separation of immigrant children from their parents following President Donald Trump's order allowing them to remain with their parents (all times local): 2:25 p.m. A group of immigrant rights protesters has blocked a bus carrying immigrant children outside a U.S.-Mexico border processing ...

Jogger says US detained her after accidental border crossing

BLAINE, Wash. (AP) - A 19-year-old woman who traveled from France to Canada to visit her mother in British Columbia says U.S. officials detained her for two weeks after she accidentally crossed the border while jogging. Cedella Roman tells the Canadian Broadc
www.washingtontimes.com stories: Travel

Jogger says US detained her after accidental border crossing

BLAINE, Wash. (AP) - A 19-year-old woman who traveled from France to Canada to visit her mother in British Columbia says U.S. officials detained her for two weeks after she accidentally crossed the border while jogging. Cedella Roman tells the Canadian Broadcast Co. that two U.S. Customs and Border Protection ...

Facebook Fact-Checks Fake News

After helping to spread fake news online, Facebook is doubling down in its efforts to fight it. For more than a year, the social network has been removing false accounts, working with fact-checkers, […] The post Facebook Fact-Checks Fake News appeared f
Geek.com

Facebook Fact-Checks Fake News

After helping to spread fake news online, Facebook is doubling down in its efforts to fight it. For more than a year, the social network has been removing false accounts, working with fact-checkers, […] The post Facebook Fact-Checks Fake News appeared first on Geek.com.

‘Junk’ Jumping Gene Actually Key to Embryonic Development

One man’s junk is another man’s critical regulator of the first stages of embryonic development. The so-called “jumping gene,” long considered hereditary clutter or a damaging parasite, is actually key to human evolution. […] Th
Geek.com

‘Junk’ Jumping Gene Actually Key to Embryonic Development

One man’s junk is another man’s critical regulator of the first stages of embryonic development. The so-called “jumping gene,” long considered hereditary clutter or a damaging parasite, is actually key to human evolution. […] The post ‘Junk’ Jumping Gene Actually Key to Embryonic Development appeared first on Geek.com.

Alaska city honors Guardsmen killed in crash after '64 quake

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) - A month after the second most powerful earthquake ever was recorded, the Alaska port community of Valdez remained in ruins. A hulking Alaska National Guard cargo plane's mission April 25, 1964, was to deliver Gov. William Egan to over
www.washingtontimes.com stories: Travel

Alaska city honors Guardsmen killed in crash after '64 quake

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) - A month after the second most powerful earthquake ever was recorded, the Alaska port community of Valdez remained in ruins. A hulking Alaska National Guard cargo plane's mission April 25, 1964, was to deliver Gov. William Egan to oversee efforts to rebuild the town on a ...

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Cardinals-Brewers Preview (Jun 23, 2018)

MILWAUKEE -- Ryan Braun will be back in the starting lineup Sunday when the Milwaukee Brewers wrap up their four-game series with the St. Louis Cardinals at Miller Park.
FOX Sports Digital

Cardinals-Brewers Preview (Jun 23, 2018)

MILWAUKEE -- Ryan Braun will be back in the starting lineup Sunday when the Milwaukee Brewers wrap up their four-game series with the St. Louis Cardinals at Miller Park.

Mariners stop 5-game slide with 7-2 win against Red Sox

BOSTON (AP) Mike Leake pitched eight shutout innings, Mitch Haniger drove in three runs and the Seattle Mariners snapped a season-high five-game losing streak with a 7-2 victory over the Boston Red Sox on Saturday night.
FOX Sports Digital

Mariners stop 5-game slide with 7-2 win against Red Sox

BOSTON (AP) Mike Leake pitched eight shutout innings, Mitch Haniger drove in three runs and the Seattle Mariners snapped a season-high five-game losing streak with a 7-2 victory over the Boston Red Sox on Saturday night.

Colon goes for history as Rangers face Twins (Jun 23, 2018)

Bartolo Colon goes for a spot in the history books Sunday afternoon when he takes the mound at Target Field where the Texas Rangers will face the Minnesota Twins.
FOX Sports Digital

Colon goes for history as Rangers face Twins (Jun 23, 2018)

Bartolo Colon goes for a spot in the history books Sunday afternoon when he takes the mound at Target Field where the Texas Rangers will face the Minnesota Twins.

Mercury look to keep rolling vs. struggling Sky (Jun 23, 2018)

The Phoenix Mercury will go for their ninth win in the past 10 games when they visit the Chicago Sky on Sunday evening at Wintrust Arena near downtown Chicago.
FOX Sports Digital

Mercury look to keep rolling vs. struggling Sky (Jun 23, 2018)

The Phoenix Mercury will go for their ninth win in the past 10 games when they visit the Chicago Sky on Sunday evening at Wintrust Arena near downtown Chicago.

Font, Rays shut down Yanks; DeSclafani slams Reds past Cubs

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) Wilmer Font worked into the sixth inning to get his first major league win, Willy Adames homered and the Tampa Bay Rays beat the New York Yankees 4-0 on Saturday.
FOX Sports Digital

Font, Rays shut down Yanks; DeSclafani slams Reds past Cubs

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) Wilmer Font worked into the sixth inning to get his first major league win, Willy Adames homered and the Tampa Bay Rays beat the New York Yankees 4-0 on Saturday.

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