Daily Archives: October 14, 2015

An Undemocratic Party? Ahead of First Debate, Criticism Grows over DNC’s M ove to Control Process


Democracy Now!

Published on Oct 14, 2015

Democracynow.org – Five Democratic presidential candidates will square off tonight in Las Vegas for the first of six debates in the 2016 campaign. The participants are former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders, former Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley, former Virginia Senator Jim Webb and former Rhode Island Governor Lincoln Chafee. Hawaii Congressmember and Democratic National Committee Vice Chair Tulsi Gabbard will not be attending the debate, and says she was disinvited after publicly calling for more than six debates. We get a preview of the debate with Bill Curry, Salon.com political columnist, former White House counselor to President Clinton and a two-time Democratic nominee for governor of Connecticut.

Global Climate Change
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Fossil teeth place humans in Asia ‘20,000 years early’ – BBC News

http://www.bbc.com/news/science-environment-34531861

The 47 human teeth were found sealed in a cave, beneath 80,000-year-old stalagmites

By Paul Rincon Science editor, BBC News website

Fossil finds from China have shaken up the traditional narrative of humankind’s dispersal from Africa.

Scientists working in Daoxian, south China, have discovered teeth belonging to modern humans that date to at least 80,000 years ago.

This is 20,000 years earlier than the widely accepted “Out of Africa” migration that led to the successful peopling of the globe by our species.

Details of the work are outlined in the journal Nature.

We need to re-think our models. Maybe there was more than one Out of Africa migration Dr María Martinón-Torres, UCL

Several lines of evidence – including genetics and archaeology – support a dispersal of our species from Africa 60,000 years ago.

Early modern humans living in the horn of Africa are thought to have crossed the Red Sea via the Bab el Mandeb straits, taking advantage of low water levels.

All non-African people alive today are thought to derive from this diaspora.

Now, excavations at Fuyan Cave in Daoxian have unearthed a trove of 47 human teeth.

‘Game-changer’

“It was very clear to us that these teeth belonged to modern humans [from their morphology]. What was a surprise was the date,” Dr María Martinón-Torres, from University College London (UCL), told BBC News.

…(read more).

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What The End Of Pilgrim Nuclear Means For Massachusetts | Radio Boston


October 13, 2015

Norman Pierce of Plymouth protests against the Pilgrim Nuclear Power Plant in 2012. (Steven Senne/AP)

After 43 years of operation, Pilgrim Nuclear Plant announced Tuesday it will shut down by June 2019. So, what does that mean for Massachusetts and the future of nuclear energy?

Guests

Bruce Gellerman, WBUR reporter. He tweets @AudioBruce.

Michael Golay, professor of nuclear science and engineering at MIT.

More

WBUR: 43-Year-Old Pilgrim Nuclear Plant In Plymouth To Close Permanently

  • “Entergy Corp. said in a statement it will close the plant, which provides 680 megawatts of energy to Massachusetts, ‘because of poor market conditions, reduced revenues and increased operational costs.’ ”

The Boston Globe: Pilgrim Nuclear Power Plant To Close In Plymouth

  • “The decision will have a significant impact on the town of Plymouth as well as the region. The plant employs about 600 people and provides the South Shore town with $10 million a year and other financial benefits.”

WCVB: ‘Potential Energy Shortage,’ Baker Warns Of Pilgrim Plant Closing

  • “‘Losing Pilgrim as a significant power generator not only poses a potential energy shortage, but also highlights the need for clean, reliable, affordable energy proposals which my administration has put forward through legislation to deliver affordable hydroelectricity and Class-I renewable resources,’ Baker said.”

The Boston Globe: Tough Times, No Easy Answers For Pilgrim Nuclear Power Plant

  • “The Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station was already facing rising costs, declining revenues, and an energy market increasingly inhospitable to nuclear power. And then the federal Nuclear Regulatory Commission delivered some really bad news.”

Global Climate Change
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Nuclear

Climate Change And The Next Genocide | On Point


October 13, 2015 at 11:00 AM
We’ll talk with historian Tim Snyder, who sees resource wars behind past genocides and says climate change now raises the danger again.

The bare landscape of Crimea, Ukraine, offers little protection in warfare, and German infantrymen hug the ground to escape enemy fire, Jan. 7, 1942. (AP)

Yale historian Timothy Snyder has shaken up what seemed the settled history of World War II and the Holocaust with a more complicated view of Hitler and his motives. Anti-Semitism, yes. Raging. But tied, crucially, to a desperate sense of limited resources. An “ecological panic,” says Snyder, that drove Hitler and the Nazis to conquest, the dissolution of states that might resist them, and to mass murder. Genocide. Now, Snyder warns, we should not think those impulses are frozen in the past. Climate change could spark a return. This hour On Point, a new warning on ecological panic and resource wars.

– Tom Ashbrook

Guests

Timothy Snyder, professor of history at Yale University. Author of the new book, “Black Earth: The Holocaust as History and Warning.” Also author of “Bloodlands.” (@TimothyDSnyder)

Francesco Femia, co-founder and director of the Center for Climate and Security.

See:

Global Climate Change
Environment Ethics
Environment Justice

A Dangerous Sense Of Safety | On Point


October 14, 2015 at 11:00 AM
Does our desire for safety leave us vulnerable to bigger disaster? A top economics reporter makes the case.

Chris Joseph, far left, inspects the flood waters near high tide in the historic downtown in Georgetown, S.C., Sunday, Oct. 4, 2015. (AP)

Greg Ip is chief economics commentator for the Wall Street Journal, and here’s what catches his eye in our country lately: that the more we try to avoid risk, the more risk we may incur. We fight forest fires until forests are stuffed with kindling ready to blaze. We regulate banking and bankers go looking for riskier investments. We live next to flood defenses, and the floods overwhelm. You can’t make it foolproof. But is too much safety and stability our big American problem these days? This hour On Point, Greg Ip on safety and risk and American life now.

– Tom Ashbrook

Guests

Greg Ip, chief economics commentator for The Wall Street Journal. Author of the new book, “Foolproof: Why Safety Can Be Dangerous and How Danger Makes Us Safe.” Also author of “The Little Book of Economics.” (@greg_ip)

Tom Hirschl, professor of sociology at Cornell University, where he is also director of the population and development program. Co-author of “Chasing the American Dream.”

Global Climate Change
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