Tuesday, October 02, 2018


Sept. 11, 2018
With 2018 shaping up as the fourth hottest year on record, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres warned Monday that the world must take action in the next two years to avert the disastrous consequences of runaway climate change.
"If we do not change course by 2020, we risk missing the point where we can avoid runaway climate change, with disastrous consequences for people and all the natural systems that sustain us."
"Far too many leaders have refused to listen. Far too few have acted with the vision the science demands," said Guterres whose address came just two weeks before world leaders gather in New York for the annual UN General Assembly meeting.

Oct. 2, 2018
Far beyond Pluto, astronomers have found a new dwarf planet that follows the most distant orbit yet confirmed, reaching some 2300 times farther from the sun than Earth’s. Nicknamed “The Goblin” thanks to its discovery around Halloween 2015, 2015 TG387 takes 40,000 years to orbit the sun, researchers report online today on the preprint server arXiv.

Benjamin Wittes Oct. 2, 2018
If I were a senator, I would not vote to confirm Brett Kavanaugh.
These are words I write with no pleasure, but with deep sadness. Unlike many people who will read them with glee—as validating preexisting political, philosophical, or jurisprudential opposition to Kavanaugh’s nomination—I have no hostility to or particular fear of conservative jurisprudence. I have a long relationship with Kavanaugh, and I have always liked him. I have admired his career on the D.C. Circuit. I have spoken warmly of him. I have published him. I have vouched publicly for his character—more than once—and taken a fair bit of heat for doing so. I have also spent a substantial portion of my adult life defending the proposition that judicial nominees are entitled to a measure of decency from the Senate and that there should be norms of civility within a process that showed Kavanaugh none even before the current allegations arose.
Can anyone seriously entertain the notion that a reasonable pro-choice woman would feel like her position could get a fair shake before a Justice Kavanaugh? Can anyone seriously entertain the notion that a reasonable Democrat, or a reasonable liberal of any kind, would after that performance consider him a fair arbiter in, say, a case about partisan gerrymandering, voter identification, or anything else with a strong partisan valence? Quite apart from the merits of Ford’s allegations against him, Kavanaugh’s display on Thursday—if I were a senator voting on confirmation—would preclude my support.

Sept. 26, 2018
Last week, Spotify began beta testing a new feature that allows independent artists to upload their own music directly to the platform, completely bypassing the old label or distributor model that’s existed as the barrier between artist and consumer since the music business’ infancy.
Right now, the direct upload option is available as an invite-only beta feature on its Spotify for Artists platform — which includes about 200,000 verified users, accounting for 72 percent of all streams — and only “a few hundred U.S. based artists” got the invite. But, according to Spotify, in the next few months, more artists will get in.

Millionaire donors to republicans

Major Study Finds The US Is An Oligarchy
April 16, 2014
Researchers concluded that U.S. government policies rarely align with the preferences of the majority of Americans, but do favour special interests and lobbying organizations: "When a majority of citizens disagrees with economic elites and/or with organized interests, they generally lose. Moreover, because of the strong status quo bias built into the US political system, even when fairly large majorities of Americans favour policy change, they generally do not get it."

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