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Al Franken Is Not Sorry
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
Even as he resigned from the Senate in disgrace this week, Minnesota Sen. Al Franken couldn't resist a parting shot.
North Korea’s Kim will not be intimidated, To get a read on North Korea, watch the US, not China, Why Pope Francis didn’t say ‘Rohingya,’ Can
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, world
“North Korea continued its defiance of the international community with the test of yet another ballistic missile [Nov. 29],” states an editorial. “In response to this latest outrage, concerned governments continue to try to muster a concerted effort to constrain North Korean behavior.... Still, flaws in the strategy to do so remain unfixed and must be remedied.... The challenge is for the U.S. and partners like Japan to articulate a diplomatic settlement that Pyongyang can support.
NASA SuperTIGER Balloon Launching Over Antarctica Will Hunt Rare Cosmic Rays
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
A team of scientists is camped out in Antarctica to launch a giant balloon in hopes of better understanding the rarest type of cosmic rays that hit Earth—particles of relatively heavy elements like zinc and tin. The project, called Super Trans-Iron Galactic Element Recorder and nicknamed SuperTIGER, is supposed to launch by Sunday, but the team is at the mercy of the harsh Antarctic weather and has already been delayed from its first prospective lift-off. Cosmic rays is a general term for all sorts of particles that hit Earth.
Photos Show People Waiting in Line for 6 Hours for This Gallery's Selfie Opportunity of a Lifetime
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
Whatever it takes to get that 'gram
Tonya Harding's World Was Nothing Like Nancy Kerrigan's. That Mattered in 1994
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
Tonya Harding had an underdog story that appealed to some but made it easier for others to suspect her
'These Children Were Stolen.' Former Nurse Pleads Not Guilty in Deaths of 5 Children
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
An imprisoned former nurse who prosecutors believe could be responsible for the deaths of up to 60 children in Texas pleaded not guilty
A Small Oklahoma Town Was Chosen for a Bioterrorism Drill. Some People Are Concerned
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
Some are worried whether the test chemicals are truly harmless
America’s Allies in the Arab World Don’t Know What to Make of Trump’s Jerusalem Declaration
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
But to begin with, protests across the region were muffled
The global dominance of white people is thanks to the potato
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
In his economic masterwork The Wealth of Nations, the great Scottish economist Adam Smith reveals himself to be a deep admirer of Irish poor folk. Or, more specifically, their preferred food, potatoes. “The chairmen, porters, and coal-heavers in London, and those unfortunate women who live by prostitution, the strongest men and the most beautiful women…
14 UN Peacekeepers Killed and Dozens Wounded in Congo Attack
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
"It's a very huge attack, certainly the worst in recent memory"
Norovirus Outbreak Sickens Students at North Carolina State University
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
About 60 students have come down with the illness
Man Who Bilked More Than $100 Million in Ponzi Scheme Escapes Federal Prison
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
Prison officials said Frederick Darren Berg was discovered missing Wednesday
Oklahoma veterinarian removes 21 pacifiers from dog's belly
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, odd news
EDMOND, Okla. (AP) — An Oklahoma mother and father couldn't figure out what was happening to their child's pacifiers until the baby's grandmother saw the family dog swipe one off a counter.
Wisconsin man fleeing police crashed while checking phone
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, odd news
MILWAUKEE (AP) — Milwaukee prosecutors say a man who led police on a high-speed chased told arresting officers he crashed his minivan because he became distracted checking his cellphone for directions.
North Korea’s Kim will not be intimidated, To get a read on North Korea, watch the US, not China, Why Pope Francis didn’t say ‘Rohingya,’ Can
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, world
“North Korea continued its defiance of the international community with the test of yet another ballistic missile [Nov. 29],” states an editorial. “In response to this latest outrage, concerned governments continue to try to muster a concerted effort to constrain North Korean behavior.... Still, flaws in the strategy to do so remain unfixed and must be remedied.... The challenge is for the U.S. and partners like Japan to articulate a diplomatic settlement that Pyongyang can support.
Astronomers have observed the most
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
First observed by Carnegie Observatories researchers, the supermassive black hole was found to exist in a quasar dating to some 690 million after the Big Bang, and aeon to us but just a blip in the timescale of the universe.
Man Beat 3
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
The man threw the 3-year-old to the ground causing head trauma
The Downside of Having an Almost Perfect Memory
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
Fewer than 100 people have been diagnosed with highly superior autobiographical memory (HSAM). Here's what that means
‘We Must Protect Our Girls.’ Will Pakistan Finally Vote to End Child Marriage?
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
Pakistan's parliament will vote on whether to raise the minimum marriage age to 18
AI researchers are trying to combat how AI can be used to lie and deceive
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
Among researchers studying how AI can be used to lie and manipulate the world, there’s a feeling that 2017 has been the calm before the storm. The past few years have brought example after example from research labs of how AI can generate videos of politicians saying literally anything, or potentially trick self-driving cars into…
Aide Says Rep. Trent Franks Offered Her $5 Million to Carry His Child
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
Ted Franks abruptly resigned from Congress
Solar and Wind Power Face Serious Threats From the Trump Administration
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
Less than a year into Trump's presidency, clean energy developers face a slew of unanticipated threats that could slow the industry's growth
Clashes Erupt Across West Bank Over U.S. Jerusalem Pivot
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
Palestinians clashed with Israeli troops across the West Bank and Muslim worshippers from Jordan to Indonesia took to the streets
Liquefied gas proving to be a natural for energy firms
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
The world's energy companies are being increasingly enticed by liquefied natural gas, thanks to an expected rise in global demand and the fuel's flexibility when compared to costly, long-term pipeline projects. France's Total, which holds a 20 percent stake in the Yamal project that went on line in the Russian Arctic on Friday, recently announced it was buying some of the LNG assets of Engie, another French energy firm, catapulting it into the number two spot in the sector. "I do expect LNG demand to grow in the next few years for a number of reasons as part of the overall growth in demand for natural gas," said Peter Hartley, a professor of economics at Rice University.
Israeli Strikes Kill 2 Hamas Men After Gaza Rocket Attack
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
Trump's recognition of Jerusalem as Israel's capital has roiled the region
Head Priest Among 3 Dead in Samurai Sword Attack at Tokyo Shrine
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
The head priest of a prominent shrine in Tokyo was ambushed and killed with a samurai sword
Militias, poachers wreak havoc on central Africa's wildlife: monitor
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
Sudan's Janjaweed, Uganda's Lord's Resistance Army and other notorious militias are wreaking havoc on wildlife in central Africa, poaching and trafficking elephants, hippopotamuses, buffaloes and other animals, a monitor said Friday. The threat comes from "highly organised armed groups who are linked to human rights violations and ongoing political instability" as well as state actors, armed pastoralists and poachers, Traffic said in a report. Joseph Kony, a self-styled mystic and prophet who launched a bloody rebellion three decades ago, "tasked a group of LRA fighters with obtaining 100 tusks... over the course of nine months" from the Garamba natural reserve in Democratic Republic of Congo, Traffic said.
Trump visits Mississippi's Civil Rights Museum amid protests
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, politics
As Trump visited the new Museum of Mississippi History and the Mississippi Civil Rights Museum, protesters held up signs and shouted "No Trump, no hate, no KKK in the USA."
North Korea’s Kim will not be intimidated, To get a read on North Korea, watch the US, not China, Why Pope Francis didn’t say ‘Rohingya,’ Can
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, world
“North Korea continued its defiance of the international community with the test of yet another ballistic missile [Nov. 29],” states an editorial. “In response to this latest outrage, concerned governments continue to try to muster a concerted effort to constrain North Korean behavior.... Still, flaws in the strategy to do so remain unfixed and must be remedied.... The challenge is for the U.S. and partners like Japan to articulate a diplomatic settlement that Pyongyang can support.
Is the World's First Nuclear Fusion Plant Finally on Track?
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
The world's first nuclear fusion plant has now reached 50 percent completion, the project's director-general announced Wednesday (Dec. 6). When it is operational, the experimental fusion plant, called the International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor (ITER), will circulate plasma in its core that is 10 times hotter than the sun, surrounded by magnets as cold as interstellar space. To fuse hydrogen atoms and generate 10 times more power than goes into it by the 2030s.
The Earth is making a weird noise, and researchers have no idea why
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
Thanks to humans, the Earth is a pretty noisy place. We're loud creatures — certainly more so than any other animal ever to walk the planet — and we're even louder when we get together with other humans. But the Earth isn't totally silent, even without noisy animals all over its surface, and scientists are trying to figure out why that is. For the very first time, researchers have captured an underwater recording of a mysterious noise that Earth has apparently be producing for eons, and they still aren't sure why. The sound which the planet produces is a low, steady, unceasing hum. Scientists have been attempting to record and explain the odd noise as far back as the late 1950s, with little concrete data to suggest its source. Now, new research published in Geophysical Research Letters is attempting to explain why it happens, and scientists think it might have something to do with the ocean. "The Earth’s hum is the permanent free oscillations of the Earth recorded in the absence of earthquakes," the research paper explains. The existence of the sound, which had gone for decades without being confirmed by additional research, was finally supported by Japanese scientists in 1998. This newest study is the first to actually record the sound from deep beneath the ocean's waves. By recording ambient sound within the ocean and then using robust noise cancelling techniques to strip away the sound of the ocean itself, scientists were left with only the sound. They were able to confirm that the noise is completely continuous and, over nearly a year of observation, did not vary significantly. But what actually causes it? Well, the jury on that is still out, but various theories have been proposed. One of the more plausible explanations is that the Earth's hum is actually acoustic resonance. Acoustic resonance, which is the process by which objects of similar natural frequency will vibrate in sync with each other even if they're not directly touching, could cause the Earth to produce a continuous vibration, some scientists believe, but others aren't so sure. Further research is most certainly warranted, and even if the cause of the hum turns out to be something rather mundane, it could still help give us a rare glimpse at the inner workings of our planet.
U.S. States Tried Decriminalizing Pot Before. Here's Why It Didn't Work
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
Legalization proponents believe they have the upper hand. But history tells another story
Ancient Tombs Dating Back 3,500 Years Discovered in Egypt's Luxor
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
The latest discovery in the city famed for its temples and tombs
North Korea’s Kim will not be intimidated, To get a read on North Korea, watch the US, not China, Why Pope Francis didn’t say ‘Rohingya,’ Can
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, world
“North Korea continued its defiance of the international community with the test of yet another ballistic missile [Nov. 29],” states an editorial. “In response to this latest outrage, concerned governments continue to try to muster a concerted effort to constrain North Korean behavior.... Still, flaws in the strategy to do so remain unfixed and must be remedied.... The challenge is for the U.S. and partners like Japan to articulate a diplomatic settlement that Pyongyang can support.
Suspected Serial Killer's Parents Refuse to Answer Questions
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
"This is a rarity"
President Trump: America 'Cannot Afford' for Roy Moore to Lose Alabama Senate Election
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
Trump cast doubt on the women who accused Moore of misconduct
See Astonishing Images of the California Wildfires From Space
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
Astronauts and satellites have been capturing terrifying images of the blazes
North Korea’s Kim will not be intimidated, To get a read on North Korea, watch the US, not China, Why Pope Francis didn’t say ‘Rohingya,’ Can
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, world
“North Korea continued its defiance of the international community with the test of yet another ballistic missile [Nov. 29],” states an editorial. “In response to this latest outrage, concerned governments continue to try to muster a concerted effort to constrain North Korean behavior.... Still, flaws in the strategy to do so remain unfixed and must be remedied.... The challenge is for the U.S. and partners like Japan to articulate a diplomatic settlement that Pyongyang can support.
Donald Trump's Approval Rating Just Hit a New Low
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
November was his lowest point since he took office in January
Yellowstone Supervolcano: An Eruption Isn't Coming, But Here's What Scientists Would See
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
"Some volcanic systems just seem to be in a perpetual state of unrest, and Yellowstone is one of those," Scientist-in-Charge at the U.S. Geological Survey's Yellowstone Volcano Observatory told Newsweek. That unrest is scientifically fascinating, which is why researchers monitor the region from the ground and from space. In order for a supervolcanic eruption to begin, he said, a truly huge amount of magma would need to rise to the surface, and that would have very clear consequences. "You've got to break a lot of rock to move that much magma," he said.
Why Is Mars Red? Primordial Steam Bath Created Clay
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
Mars gets its “Red Planet” nickname from the clays that cover its surface, but billions of years ago, Mars was steaming and in a bit of a blue funk. “The basic recipe for making clay is you take rock and you add heat and water,” lead author Kevin Cannon, a planetary scientist at the University of Central Florida, said in a press release. Plenty of young planets go through a magma ocean phase, with their surfaces coated in lava, before settling down.
'Get Down!' Students Describe Terror as Gunfire Erupts at High School
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
"I just thought it was a dream"
Californian Communities Are Under Siege as Destructive Wildfires Continue Their Rampage
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
Tens of thousands of people under evacuation orders and the flames have destroyed nearly 200 homes and buildings
Readers write: Seeing the other side, more Lebanon coverage, investigation recap, uranium story presentation
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, world
Recommended: Could you pass a US citizenship test? Regarding the Nov. 6 Monitor Daily article “Lebanese departure shows Saudi response to Iran’s rising role”: Please continue covering Lebanon. Regarding the Nov. 13 Monitor Daily article “Mueller investigation: what we’ve learned, and what comes next”: This article summarized weeks of speculation, opinion, and partisan reporting.
North Korea’s Kim will not be intimidated, To get a read on North Korea, watch the US, not China, Why Pope Francis didn’t say ‘Rohingya,’ Can
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, world
“North Korea continued its defiance of the international community with the test of yet another ballistic missile [Nov. 29],” states an editorial. “In response to this latest outrage, concerned governments continue to try to muster a concerted effort to constrain North Korean behavior.... Still, flaws in the strategy to do so remain unfixed and must be remedied.... The challenge is for the U.S. and partners like Japan to articulate a diplomatic settlement that Pyongyang can support.
Rare glimpse of a black hole's magnetic field could help us to understand how it feeds
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
A sudden flare and cooling of gas around a black hole has enabled astronomers to measure the magnetic field of a black hole for the first time – finding it much weaker than expected.
Narwhals Caught in Nets Are So Stressed Their Hearts Almost Stop
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
Narwhals, bizarre-looking animals with enormous tusks protruding from their faces, have a surprising adaptation when trying to escape from predators, according to new research. Any athlete knows that when you exercise, your heart rate increases.
The polar bear in this video is dying from starvation. Fortunately, most aren't...yet
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
After landing on Baffin Island, Canada, wildlife photographer and environmental activist Paul Nicklen captured video of a frail polar bear — dying and foaming from the mouth — as the weak animal collapsed to the ground. The bear will soon be dead — if it isn't already.  On Dec. 5, Nicklen posted the grim video to his Instagram account, and since then, it's been stirring  emotions around the web. Polar bears are, for better or worse, a symbolic species when it comes to global warming, and many are seeing this video as a new warning sign.  Fortunately, however, the condition of this bear is not representative of most polar bear populations — at least not yet.  SEE ALSO: Trump shrank 2 national monuments by nearly 2 million acres. He can't do that to Yellowstone. There are 19 different populations of polar bears in the expansive Arctic. The dwindling sea ice here — which these predators need to hunt fat-rich seals — is now affecting different groups of bears in different ways. "It’s tough to see a disturbing image like that and not feel sympathy for the animal," U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) polar bear biologist Todd Atwood said in an interview. "It’s also tough to see an isolated image extrapolated to some kind of population level effect." The actual cause of the bear's death will remain unknown, but Atwood doubts there's one specific cause. "It’s probably a combination of things — it could be an old animal — but it also could be that if it’s still on land, that there’s not enough sea ice," he said.  My entire @Sea_Legacy team was pushing through their tears and emotions while documenting this dying polar bear. It’s a soul-crushing scene that still haunts me, but I know we need to share both the beautiful and the heartbreaking if we are going to break down the walls of apathy. This is what starvation looks like. The muscles atrophy. No energy. It’s a slow, painful death. When scientists say polar bears will be extinct in the next 100 years, I think of the global population of 25,000 bears dying in this manner. There is no band aid solution. There was no saving this individual bear. People think that we can put platforms in the ocean or we can feed the odd starving bear. The simple truth is this—if the Earth continues to warm, we will lose bears and entire polar ecosystems. This large male bear was not old, and he certainly died within hours or days of this moment. But there are solutions. We must reduce our carbon footprint, eat the right food, stop cutting down our forests, and begin putting the Earth—our home—first. Please join us at @sea_legacy as we search for and implement solutions for the oceans and the animals that rely on them—including us humans. Thank you your support in keeping my @sea_legacy team in the field. With @CristinaMittermeier #turningthetide with @Sea_Legacy #bethechange #nature #naturelovers This video is exclusively managed by Caters News. To license or use in a commercial player please contact info@catersnews.com or call +44 121 616 1100 / +1 646 380 1615” A post shared by Paul Nicklen (@paulnicklen) on Dec 5, 2017 at 8:52am PST After posting the video, Nicklen told National Geographic that "when scientists say bears are going extinct, I want people to realize what it looks like. Bears are going to starve to death. This is what a starving bear looks like." But while the threat to polar bears is real, all is not yet dire for the Arctic predators.  "It’s worth noting that there are some subpopulations that are believed to be stable," said Atwood. Polar bears are listed as a threatened species in the United States, which means that while they're not yet on the brink of extinction, they "are likely to be at the brink in the near future," according to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, which maintains the list. For polar bear populations that are struggling, it's often due to a lack of sea ice. Polar bears can't hunt seals on the open water. "So as the open water season gets longer, there’s association between the length of the open water seas and body conditions — body conditions decline," Atwood said. But this isn't the full story. The physical condition of polar bears is also dependent upon how much fish is available for seals. So in places with more fish and seals — places that are more "biologically productive" — there will be more food for bears, and they're likely to be better fed.  Unless, of course, there's no sea ice there, either.  There is a clear solution to polar bears' vulnerability — and you undoubtedly know it well: Humanity's commitment to limit global warming, which is caused by fossil fuel emissions. These heat-trapping gases warm both the oceans and the air, resulting in vastly diminished sea ice, particularly in the summer and fall.  "This requires changing our behaviors relative to our carbon footprint," Atwood said. WATCH: The world’s tallest mammal is now threatened with extinction     
Should you ever get a puppy at Christmas? Here's all you need to know
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, science
The average owner spends between £21,000 and £33,000 on their dog in its lifetime.
Woman who robbed banks while pregnant sentenced to prison
JAY GORY, MANAGING EDITOR, odd news
MADISON, Wis. (AP) — A Wisconsin woman accused of robbing three banks while she was more than eight months pregnant pleaded guilty to robbing two of them and was sentenced to four years in prison.