Tag Archives: science news

Trans-Fat Still in Wide Use in the USA

 

food

Artificial trans fats, better known to many American consumers as partially hydrogenated vegetable oil, have contributed to a half million deaths a year, many of those in developing countries ill-equipped to address the health threats posed by a product cherished for its low price and long shelf life. It’s not just fast food giants that carry trans fats, it is also most grocery store chains. Even “Safeway” carries products that are virtual poisons to the body. Buyer beware. Read the fine print, made tiny for two reasons: they are legally obligated to “report” the ingredients, and they hope you won’t see it. Descriptions and names of ingredients are intentionally misleading, too. Plus serving size. Decrease the serving size and the amount of sugar you’re getting seems okay…if you only have a couple teaspoons and not a giant bowl. In Publix markets they have their own brand of ice cream, with both trans fat and high fructose corn syrup, Lots of chemicals on the label in tiny print. But it costs less, and is sooooo yummy! (Cheaper to make.) Which is also why Americans are the fattest, and have the highest health care costs. “More is better,” is our mantra. “Give us more! Make America Great again!” LOL> Yup…our President eats at McDonalds. Pets eat better than people at McDonalds. Pet food: “No trans fat, no grain fed, no HFCS, with added vitamins.” Now read “Fast Food Nation,” about McDonalds food, where it comes from, how the animals are abused and less healthy than grass fed (which costs more.) Money is God. (Or, rather, short term profits, as in Avatar: “The only thing the shareholders care about is their quarterly statement, not dying indigenous.”) Not only can money win elections, but promises about it can get re-elections. Trump 2020? If we don’t all blow up, first, you bet. We love bold and narcissistic, too.  (Never mind the EPA. As “Mr. Wonderful” says, “It’s all about the money. I love money. So show me the…MONEY…”) Humm. Guess the White House doesn’t believe the Bible, after all. Bible: “The love of money is the root of all evil.” Bank records, Mueller and Trump Jr.? Junior shoots animals for trophies, accepted money for access to dear old dad. Hotels, casinos, Stormy Daniels payoff. There’s “more!” There is a current battle between Lidl and other markets on the price of eggs. They undercut each other to get business. Some sales are .17 cents for a dozen. But why would anyone want to eat those eggs? There’s also a bacteria outbreak in cheap eggs. They aren’t healthy to eat. The chickens never see the light of day. Christian Chickens, too. Chick-fil-a is closed on Sunday because that’s “the Lord’s Day.” Their chickens are farmed, mistreated. Yumm? The argument I’ve heard is that mankind is made in the image of God, and so we are superior and therefore we “have dominion” over the animals, which were sacrificed in the Bible. For a barbecue? Swine (pigs) in the Bible were once invaded by demons, and there are sermons against eating something with “a cloven hoof.”  But Christian pork barbecues are everywhere at church picnics. Having studied the intelligence and sensitivity (feeling) of hogs for this novel, I can report that we do indeed share much of the DNA of hogs, whose organs can be harvested for humans, or human organs grown in their bodies. The sad thing is that they make great pets, yet are considered “food,” and so it’s somehow okay for Christians (and others) to look the other way, instead of reading all the fine print. Who reads anymore anyway, right? Ask Kanye! He’s rich. Education must be unimportant! Teachers? Blaaa. Boring. Go on AGT or The Voice, and the local newspapers will track your every word! “Have you got a minute? Give us more!” The Evangelicals don’t mention Trump liking Kanye. You can call that “Confirmation bias.” Looking only for evidence that supports your claims. Do that, and you might end up believing the Earth is flat. Coffee? We need a third party, a missing Third Man (or Woman.) Because it’s time to wake up.

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The Dumbest, Most Sexist Scifi Series?

What is YOUR pick for worst? Here’s mine:

UFO, the TV series. Not only is it a 70s strip tease, with men in charge while the women all wear tight silver stripper outfits with purple hair, but the great US Military defeats more “highly advanced” civilizations every week, with explosions heard in space, and no higher purpose than gun battles. Feel sick? MeToo.

meme

This image went viral in the last summer Olympics. It is now a meme.

NYC

Have we become a static society, as described by David Deutsch in The Beginning of Infinity? Can we really go backward to the dumb Dark Ages? He thinks not, but there is evidence of culture rejecting science, and turning everything from politics to religion into a spectator sport. White vs black, women vs men, Democrat vs Republican, military vs military. Everyone wants to see ego parades of head-butting concussions, violence without meaning or connection, like in the movie A Clockwork Orange. Will we all become jaded and cynical as the Tom Cruise character in Collateral? We are spied on and tracked, and don’t seem to care. Like lemmings, we follow the Kardashians in hope of escaping the world, as they have. That hope is thin, though. Onion skin thin, and getting thinner every day. Listen to this

Ripples in Spacetime Explained

LigoA new book Ripples in Spacetime is an engaging account of the international effort to complete Einstein’s project, capture his elusive ripples, and launch an era of gravitational-wave astronomy that promises to explain, more vividly than ever before, our universe’s structure and origin. The quest for gravitational waves involved years of risky research and many personal and professional struggles that threatened to derail one of the world’s largest scientific endeavors. Govert Schilling takes listeners to sites where these stories unfolded-including Japan’s KAGRA detector, Chile’s Atacama Cosmology Telescope, the South Pole’s BICEP detectors, and the United States’ LIGO labs. He explains the seeming impossibility of developing technologies sensitive enough to detect waves from two colliding black holes in the very distant universe, and describes the astounding precision of the LIGO detectors. Along the way Schilling clarifies concepts such as general relativity, neutron stars, and the big bang using language that listeners with little scientific background can grasp. Govert Schilling (1956) is an internationally acclaimed astronomy writer in the Netherlands. He is a contributing editor of Sky & Telescope, and his articles have appeared in Science, New Scientist and BBC Sky at Night Magazine. He wrote over fifty books (in Dutch) on a wide variety of astronomical topics, some of which have been translated into English, including Evolving Cosmos, Flash! The Hunt for the Biggest Explosions in the Universe, The Hunt for Planet X, and Atlas of Astronomical Discoveries. In 2007, the International Astronomical Union named asteroid (10986) Govert after him.